The theme for the 52nd Edition of the Carnival of Genealogy is AGE. As family historians, we take time to carefully mark the birthdates of our forebearers. We print out family tree charts including this all-important data. We make it a point to note at what age family members have married, had children and passed away. Take some time to look over the data that you have collected on members of your family tree, and share a story of age with us for the upcoming edition of the carnival. Do you have a member of the family who went to work to support the family while still of a tender age? Someone who accomplished something that was typically done by others beyond his or her years? A couple who married young? A couple with disparate ages? A family member who accomplished something of note at an advanced age? How about family members that lived many years, outlasting many of their relatives and friends? With the understanding that “age is often a state of mind”, share your family story about someone whose story stands out because of their age, either young or old.
I found myself thinking “what am I going to post about?” How about some statistics concerning age within my family tree?
- My parents were married when they were both 22.
- Glen Johnson and Vesta Wilt (maternal grandparents): 18 
- Lloyd Amore and Ella House (paternal grandparents): 21 & 20 
- John L. Johnson and Katie J. Blazer (maternal g-grandparents): 22 & 18 
- Joseph Wilt and Martha Stern (maternal g-grandparents): 22 & 18 
- Henry Amore and Annie Werts (paternal g-grandparents): 20 & 17 
- James House and Frances Ogan (paternal g-grandparents): 24 & 26 
- James W. Johnson and Amanda Mullis (maternal g-g-grandparents): 24 & 19 
- Frank Blazer and Malissa Goul (mat. g-g-grandparents): abt. 22 & abt. 26 [abt. 1858]
- Isreal Wilt and Christena Nash (mat. g-g-grandparents): 29 & 20 
- Emmanuel Stern and Nancy Caylor (mat. g-g-grandparents): 22 & 16 
- William Amore and Charlotte Imons (pat. g-g-grandparents): 20 & 22 
- William Werts and Louisa Bookless (pat. g-g-grandparents): 22 & 18 
- Florus House and Julia Lewis (pat. g-g-grandparents): 25 & 23 [abt. 1838]
I didn’t go as far back as I could, but I thought that information would give a sampling. A few things I noticed: most of the time they were married at or before age 20 or in their early 20s. Only in two cases are the wives older than their husbands by at least a year or more. There isn’t too many years difference between a husband and wife. Even though the time spans over 100 years, there isn’t many changes in how old/young the couple was upon marriage.
AVERAGE AGE AT DEATH
- Grandparents: 76 3/4 years old
- Great-grandparents: 77.5 years old
- Great-Great-Grandparents: 57 years old
There is a span of average age at death of almost 20 years between my g-g-grandparents’ generation and my g-grandparents’ generation. There were several who died at a young age: Charlotte Imons died at the age of 34; William Washington Werts died at 27; Christena Nash died at 39; Franklin Blazer died at 33; Amanda Mullis died at 35.
Then I looked at my dad’s line and discovered another interesting fact. My Grandpa Amore’s brothers lived long lives. Isaiah (Zade) Amore: 100;
Roy Amore: 95; Rollo Amore: 87; Herbert Amore: 93; Clarence Amore: 80. His sister, Clemmie Amore, died at the age of 82. Only my grandfather, Lloyd, died before the age of 80, when he was 72. My dad’s siblings also have lived long lives: Gertrude: 98; Paul: 91; Norman: 86; Bervil: 81. My aunt is still living and she is 99. Only my Uncle Gail died in his 70s from cancer.
What that tells me is that especially on my paternal side – longevity is more than likely in the genes as opposed to the environment. For the Amore’s grew up close to coal mines and many of them lived a pretty hard life.
All in all – age is only what we make of it. Whether we marry young or in our maturity; have our first child young or as an older, more patient parent. If we live very long lives, are we making the most out of our time or just passing through?
(Photos: Top – Henry and Annie Amore; Center Right: Emmanuel and Nancy Stern)