(I’ve written these posts to be published while I’m away from the computer – so you won’t have to actually live without me!)
Almost 8 years ago I came across a gold mine of genealogical information which I’ve alluded to before in previous posts. My mom told me I could search everywhere for anything pertinent. It was also another way for her to unload stuff on me. In the very back room of the basement – where she keeps the washer and dryer, inside clothes line, freezer and small appliance items she uses rarely – I opened a large box. Inside were a couple more boxes. One had old photos that I pulled out and went through. Another box held my “artwork” and silly letters I wrote as a young child – items that parents try to keep. Another box had more photo albums and papers. Now most of that is in my possession. I came across my mom’s and grandmother’s report cards, pictures of my dad’s family, pictures of my great-grandparents and my mom’s baby sister at death in their caskets (my family is morbid like that!).
Then I went through every single photo album in my mom’s house (at least I think I did!) and removed “old” pictures or photos she told me I could take. We spent time trying to label photos – especially really old ones of people I didn’t recognize.
In another part of the basement is a big trunk. My parents used it to pack clothes and household items when they moved to and from Japan in the 1950s. Inside were blankets, un-cut material my mom had purchased to make clothes, and then in the very bottom was a box. Written on the box was “Letters from WWI”. My first thought was “no!” There was no way any letters from WWI survived or that my mother would have them. I opened it and sure enough there were letters. One was dated May 1916 – my grandparents were still courting! A hundred letters is an understatement.
Then my mother found two more boxes with more letters – her letters from Japan to her parents; letters from my grandmother’s mom and siblings to my grandmother; later letters from my grandparents to each other when one of them was out of town. Then my mom handed me a big manilla folder that contained letters my grandparents wrote her when they were stationed in Wiesbaden, Germany (I’ve posted some of the letters in a previous post).
Then I opened a filing cabinet that had belonged to my grandfather. Inside were my grandparents’ memorial books, their 50th anniversary book, newspaper clippings, and two rather old looking school notebooks. One was filled with minutes from my grandfather’s family reunions – Johnson-Shively – held almost every year since before 1920 until after 1920. Most of the entries were very short and sweet and included the pertinent business meeting information – how much was in the reunion treasury, who was elected President, Vice-President, and Secretary, where the next reunion would be held and quite often the names of those who had passed away, married or born during the year.
When my husband saw the piles of materials that I was going to bring back home, he just shook his head and declared that we were going to have to add another wing to the house! I feel very fortunate that I ended up with all these materials instead of them being lost to a landfill or to someone who wouldn’t know the importance of these items. Each time I look at this memorabilia, I discover something new.
How has your treasure hunting been?
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So you won’t have to live without me while I’m tending to some family obligations, i’ve written some posts that are scheduled to post in the next several days. So stay tuned for more!
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I don’t want anyone to leave me but wanted to announce that for the next two weeks, I won’t be able to post any new information. I have some family obligations that will keep me from being on the computer. I’ve already posted my entry for the next Carnival of Genealogy.
Please go check out some of the links I have to the right or within my many posts. There are many great genealogy blogs that have tons of information – I hope you’ll enjoy yourself!
While I’m away from the computer, leave me some comments on posts you would like to see or blogs you’ve read and enjoy.
Please come back now, you hear!
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Posted in Carnival of Genealogy, Life and Death, Photographs, tagged age, Amore, Blazer, Carnival of Genealogy, CoG, genealogy, Goul, Johnson, Stern, Werts, Wilt on July 8, 2008 |
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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)
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Posted in Life and Death, Photographs, tagged cemetery, genealogy, grave, headstones, Indiana, Ohio, Oregon, Washington on July 7, 2008 |
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I’ve been very lucky to be the recipient of old photos – a few prior to the 1900s, many from the early 1900s – 1950s and later. My family has an affinity for snapping photos of graves and headstones – which is like a windfall for me – especially when all the pertinent information is recorded as well. I have pictures of graves from Ohio and Indiana to Oregon and Washington State.
Here are just a few of the photos I’ve been lucky to receive.
Graves of my grandmother’s grandparents – Emmanuel Stern and Nancy Caylor Stern.
Graves of Joseph Napolean Wilt’s (my great-grandfather) brother, Charles Wilt and Charles’ wife – Margaret.
Johnson Ancestors’ graves:
Grave of William and Vilena Johnson (my g-g-grandfather’s brother and sister-in-law); Graves of Mary and Letis Johnson – my grandfather’s siblings; then the picture of the graves of my great-great-grandparents (James Wilson and Amanda Evaline Johnson’s) babies who died in infancy.
My brother, Jim’s grave, in Welcome Cemetery close to Culman, Alabama.
There are many more in my files and quite a few that I haven’t scanned yet. I’ve also had other distant cousins and relatives email me or actually send me pictures of ancestors’ graves.
Do you go “grave hunting”?
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Thanks to Randy Seavers’ Genea-Musings Blog, I found out that the current “Everton’s Genealogical Helper” Online Edition is FREE for download (this month only!). You can go to Everton Publisher’s Genealogy Blog for the link.
While I was scanning the online edition, I came across a link (yes, the links within the online edition actually link to a website) for Jackson County, Missouri records. If you go to https://records.co.jackson.mo.us/localization/menu.asp and click the “Acknowledge Disclaimer” link at the bottom and proceed. You can look up Marriage Records, Official Public Records and Uniform Commercial Codes. I found the Power of Attorney of my great-great-aunt’s grandson and marriage records for more of the Given family that I am trying to locate.
Since that gave me a little taste of gleaming information from public records, I thought I’d do some Googling to see what else was out there. Unfortunately, my time is short right now so I didn’t find a lot of sites, but I did find a site called Your Missouri Courts which looks as if it encompasses all counties in Missouri and the courts therein. I located some wills and divorce information.
Hope those sites help someone!
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Say what? So what is with the First Cousin “once removed”? What is a “cross” cousin? A “parallel” cousin? Now my grandmother used to call her step-siblings – which were also her first cousins, “Double” cousins, but I’ve since learned that is an incorrect term. Double Cousins are those children whose parents are married to siblings. If two sisters marry two brothers – then the children are “double” cousins because they share the same grandparents, great-grandparents, etc. So I guess you could coin a new term and say my grandmother and her step-siblings/1st cousins were “Half Double” cousins. No, probably not!
For more information on what determines a cross cousin, a parallel cousin, etc. please go to Cousin Calculator for more information!
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Please go to Destination: Austin Family to read the 51st Carnival of Genealogy post. This Carnival was hosted by Thomas MacEntee. Thanks, Thomas! The Carnival was a tribute to Independence Day with the topic: “Independent Spirit. There are so many great posts about men and women who took a different path than others. They set out on their own and did things their way even when others said “it won’t work” or “are you crazy?“
I urge everyone to read all the entries and please leave a comment on those you visit! As a recent contributor to the Carnivals, it really helps to know what people are thinking when they read the posts and lets me put a (blog) face with a name! Remember if you leave a comment on my blog, I will include you (if I haven’t already) in my Genealogy Links or Genealogy Blogs link in the hopes that you might get more visitors coming to your site.
Once again, thank you for visiting and I hope you enjoy my contribution to the 51st CoG – Independent From Birth about my great-aunt, Eva Johnson.
Happy Fourth of July!
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