Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Wedding Wednesday - Bland-Abell of Raywick, Kentucky


The marriage of Miss Mary Thelma Bland, of the Raywick section, and Louis Raymond Abell, of the eastern part of the county, was solemnized at St. Francis' church at Raywick Wednesday morning.  The bride is a daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Lafe Bland and has a host of warm friends in the community where she lives.  The groom, who is a highly regarded young farmer, is a son of Mr. and Mrs. Bert Abell.

At Rootsweb and Ancestry I found a marriage date for them of January 6, 1926.  There was no date on this clipping.

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Newspaper Clippings - Hamilton County, Nebraska, 1912

Stockham, Nebraska is a small town along the southern border of Hamilton County.  My Great Grandpa Arthur McGrath's sister Mrs. W. Smith lived there.  In this little bit of Stockham news from the Hamilton County Advocate it mentions she went to Cozad for her father's funeral.  I had hoped for more.  The rest of the news may be of interest to someone else. 

Hamilton County Advocate, April 23, 1912


By James Beat
Haworth & Jirovsky, jewelers and opticians, Aurora, Neb.
Mesdames P. J. Maupin and Mary Coon were in York Monday.
Mrs. W. Smith went to Cozad Monday to attend her father's funeral.
Ray Galetly visited in Gresham over Sunday with his cousin, Stull Swearingen.
C. A. Coats of Aurora came down Saturday to visit over Sunday with his children.
Mrs. R. Bislaugh and son came Friday from Iowa and are now settled in the Presbyterian mance.
Mrs. Susia Walkinghorse and son came Wednesday from Arlington to visit her mother, Mrs. J. Norton.
Mrs. Margaret Van Wormer of Aurora came Wednesday to visit over Sunday with her daughter, Mrs. Dick Smith.
The operation by Drs. Steenburg, Haughey and Welch on Will Cameron Monday was successful.  He is getting along nicely.
Mrs. A. E. Cameron returned from Fremont Monday, where she visited her daughter, Mrs. Davis Rowe and the new baby.
The work on the streets is a great improvement to the town.  Jo Wood and James Beat, Sr., put in new hitch racks at the Presbyterian church.
Mr. and Mrs. Murphy moved to Hastings Monday to be near their daughter, Mr. Murphy being in poor health they had to quit the restaurant.
Miss Sadie Beat went to Ansley Monday to visit a few weeks with her uncle and aunt.  She was accompanied as far as York by her mother and Mrs. E. M. Stowell.

Monday, September 5, 2016

A Little About Charles Lee and Susannah Case

One of the most difficult branches of my tree is one set of my Third Great Grandparents, Charles Lee and Susannah Case.  According to family notes I found 25 years ago, Charles Lee was born in Dudley, Massachusetts on Halloween in 1813.  I haven't been able to find any verification of his birth or the names of his parents.  Those notes also gave Susannah Case's birth as November 26, 1816 in Belchertown, Massachusetts, but again I can't find any documentation of that.  Books of Vital Records from those areas in that time-frame don't list their birth records. 

Charles Lee
Susannah Case Lee

I remember years ago Grandma showing the photo on the right to my Mom, saying that she wasn't sure but thought the photo was of Susannah.  Grandma's mother was Sadie, Sadie's mother was Sarah and Sarah's mother was Susannah.   Susannah died when Sarah was just two years old, so Grandma felt that Sarah would have had a photo of her mother whom she never knew.  I'm still trying to determine the exact type of photograph and the time frame when this was possibly taken.  No one can say for sure who the woman in this photo is.  

The documentation I have found for Charles begins with the 1840 census from Utica Ward 1, Oneida County, New York.  Charles Lee is listed one line above Lewis Holmes and there are no females listed on the line with Charles and no males listed on the line with Lewis.  Lewis is Charles' brother-in-law, married to his sister Hannah.  Were they living together in one household?  Between the two is a total of 8 grown men, 2 adult women and 1 female child. 

June 16, 1845 at the Whitesboro Presbyterian Church in Whitestown, New York Charles and Susannah were married.  Neither copy here is a great example of documentation with names missing and a smudged copy, but these and more family notes are all I have.  I'm sure the notes are from the bible page directly where it was more clear than this copy. 

Next I found this clipping from June 14, 1846 in the Ottawa (Illinois) Free Trader.  Macon is where Charles Lee's family lived in Illinois, but according to the 1850 census record, their two children were born in New York in 1846 and again in 1849.  Is this the same Charles Lee?  Did he travel back & forth?  

This is the only census that shows Susannah by name - 1850 Bureau County, Illinois.  Their children, George and Sarah are 4 and 1, both born in New York.  They owned $400 worth of real estate.  Also in the 1850 Bureau County, Illinois census, there is a Polly Lee living with Lewis & Hannah Holmes.  It seems likely that she is the mother of Hannah and Charles Lee, but I haven't confirmed that.

The 1860 census shows Charles & kids in the town (or township) of Macon, Bureau Co., Illinois,  The census taker neglected to mark the Occupation, Value of Estate and birthplace columns and others for over half of the page.  Sarah was nearly missed, her name squeezed in between lines.

Charles was an abolitionist and at least once hid a runaway slave in his well.
From "The History of Macon Township"

Susannah and Charles are buried in Bunker Hill cemetery near Buda, Illinois.  I was able to visit their graves in 1998 and their stone had fallen over.  The side with Charles' name was face up, I was sure Susannah's name was on the other side.  After that someone posted a photo (they obviously had taken earlier) of her side of the stone on Find A Grave.   She died from complications from childbirth on April 24, 1851, her children were 5 and 2.  The baby died almost 5 months later.   I would love to know what caused Charles' death at age 48, he died in 1861 on New Years Eve.

How did losing both of her parents by age 13 affect Sarah?  No document can tell me that.  I have these two photos of Sarah late in life.  I know people didn't smile much in old photos, but it makes me wonder.

Friday, August 26, 2016

Friday's Faces from the Past - Harvard Kid #4

This tomboyish little blonde looks like she has on a nice pair of Converse high-tops.  Maybe the carnation she's holding was for coming in first place in a race in her cool buggy.  I can't tell you any more about this photo than what you can see for yourself. 

There is no identifiable information on this except what is written in the bottom corner which I can't make out.  This close-up here is what I'm trying to read.  The first line might be "J. J. Willey", as I have other photos with that photographer's name written on them.  Feel free to leave a comment with your thoughts or ideas!

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Wedding Wednesday - August Weddings in my Family Tree

Looking at marriages in August in my family tree, I have at least 51 couples who had an August wedding.  Five couples chose August 12th making it the most popular day of the month.  Only two couples among my direct ancestors were married in August.  

William Simpson & Avarilla Perkins, my Sixth Great Grandparents, were married August 18, 1742 in Baltimore, Maryland.  Their marriage is listed in the book, Maryland Marriages 1634-1777, compiled by Robert Barnes, and can be found at Ancestry. 

Roger Prescott & Helen or Ellen Shaw were married August 20, 1568 in England.  They are my Eleventh Great Grandparents.  This is so far back in history it's rare to have any actual documentation.  Their marriage is listed on Ancestry, but there is no image and the source information is "an array of materials including pedigree charts, family history articles, queries."  

My husband's Grandparents
William Alfred Bryant Mattingly & Mary Frances Charlotte Boone were married August 28, 1900 at St. Augustine Church in Lebanon, Kentucky.  William was 50 years old at the time, he died only 9 years later.  This was his second marriage, his first wife was Mary Elizabeth Mattingly.  Lottie was widowed at age 31 with six children and never married again.  

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Those Places Thursday - "On the waters of Pitman Creek"

Continuing from last week (which you can read here), this is a summary of property owned by my Great Grandparents Cicero & Allie Bell in Kentucky.  Following are the deeds we found in the Pulaski County Clerk's office in Somerset.  I've extracted just the identifiable information from them to help locate the approximate area on a map and compare to a recorded history (which you can read here).  The last deed we found in Wayne County was dated November 21, 1904.

Deed dated June 20, 1905, Deed Book 58 Pg 534

Ferguson, Kentucky - click to enlarge
J. A. and Georgie A. Wood and Elizabeth J. Richardson (widow) sell to Allie Bell - just Allie - for $190 with $90 down and 2 payments of $50 at 6% interest, "Beginning at a stake on the corner of Walnut street and railroad avenue...", then it describes a lot about 140 x 149 feet.  A note written at the bottom says, "The note for which a lien was retained in the above deed having been paid in full, we hereby release same.  This Aug. 12, 1906."    

Sounds like a town lot to me.  Where a store might be. On this Google map, you can find Sinking creek on the west side of Ferguson and the X is at Railroad Dr and Walnut Street (on Google, if you zoom in closer it's marked).  Even though Uncle Oren says in his recorded history at this point that they moved to Somerset, I think this deed describes property in Ferguson, on the south side of Somerset.  "The farm was sold and we moved to Somerset.  Here father bought a general merchandise store.

Deed dated September 20, 1905, Deed Book 58 Pg 533

Elizabeth J. Richardson (widow), John A. & Georgie A. Woods sell to Mrs. Allie Bell - again just Allie - for $300 in 3 installments at 6% interest, property "Beginning on a stake on the south side of Walnut street the corner of C. S. Bell's lot..."  then to 3 different stakes at points SW, SE, NE and back to the beginning, measuring 120 feet by 140 feet if I read it correctly.  Some additional property adjoining the lot they bought in June, maybe where a new home was built.

Next Oren says, "After about a year in the store, my father was dissatisfied with that and wanted to go back to the farm.  So the store was sold."

The store might not have lasted a full year.  It was at this point in Oren's history that he said they moved to Illinois for a while.  Before our trip I found a couple of articles in online newspapers, this one from the Lexington Herald dated March 23, 1906.  Uncle Oren didn't mention this.  Maybe this move to Mercer county was a short one, then they moved on to Illinois.  Or it's possible that he only invested in this farm and never lived there.  His brother John was in Boyle County in 1904, adjacent to Mercer county, maybe only a few miles away.  There's a deed to get someday in Mercer County.  I especially like "a well-known merchant" here.  

Lexington Herald, Friday, March 23, 1906

After living in Illinois for a while, Oren said they moved to Ferguson.  "After a few months, his earnings were sufficient to take us back to Kentucky... The folks settled in a little village south of Somerset known as Ferguson. father worked in the railroad shop and in his spare time, built a new home in Ferguson."   On an old Sanborn map of Somerset from 1914 I found a big railroad yard noted as being 2 and 1/2 miles south of the courthouse.  The new home he mentioned was possibly the reason for them buying that second lot.  Next in chronological order, the following deed is for the Dutton farm on Pitman Creek that is north of Somerset. 

Deed dated March 11, 1907, Deed Book 61 Pg 100-101

R. O. & Cordelia Heath sell to Allie Bell - again just Allie - for $1950 cash in hand paid. "Two certain tracts or parcels of land situated in [Pulaski County] on the waters of Pitman Creek...".  "Beginning on a black oak and two hickories the old Dutton corner...",  "containing 40 acres more or less...".  Second tract "Beginning on a stone in or near Joe Dutton's line...", "to a hickory, Dutton's corner...", "now McPherson's corner...", "containing 72 acres more or less...".  

This deed fits at this point of Oren's history:  "But after a while, my father preferred the farm rather than the shop, so he sold his new home and bought another farm.  This time north of Somerset, about a mile and a half out of town.  It was known as the old Dutton farm..." and he goes on to say  " was here that Virgil and Stanley were born."  Grandpa was born August 1, 1907 and Virgil was born September 7, 1909.

Wayne County Outlook, Thursday, April 4, 1907

Here's a clipping from the Wayne County newspaper that mentions selling a store again, a year after the previous clipping.  The "Dock Heath farm" here refers to R. O. & Cordelia Heath.  Crab Orchard Pike goes north from Somerset to Crab Orchard.  I wonder if one of the cottages is the home Cicero built while he worked in the railroad shop.  Notice Allie gets credit for the sale in the deed, but not the newspaper.  The following deed agrees with this clipping.  

Deed dated March 13, 1907, Deed Book 61, Pg 271-272

Allie  & C. S. Bell sell to J. E. Tomlinson and Beecher Smith for $1950 cash in hand paid, "Two certain lots of ground...", "on the waters of Sinking Creek...".   The first lot is described as "on the south side of Walnut Street, the corner of C. S. Bell's lot...", "being same deeded to Allie Bell by John A. Woods et al, on the 20th day of September 1905...".   The second lot bounded "on the corner of Walnut Street and Railroad Avenue...", "being same lot deeded to Allie Bell by John A. Woods et al. on the 20th day of June, 1905..." .  The two places in Ferguson were sold.

Now from Oren's narration:  "After about 4 years, they sold the Dutton farm and bought another one not far away.  The farm was known as the old Tom Meece place."  

Deed dated January 31, 1910, Deed Book 66 Pg 503-504

G. P. & Sarah B. Sallee and A. J. & Kate S. Crawford sell to Allie Bell (only) "for and in consideration of exchange of lands, deeded this day...", "on the waters of Pitman Creek...", "first tract 25 acres more or less, conveyed to parties of the first part by John T. Meece and others...", "three certain tracts of land adjoining the first tract and all now constituting one farm".    This deed refers to a previous deed where the Sallee's and Crawford's bought the land from John T. Meece in May, 1907.  

Deed dated January 31, 1910, Deed Book 69 Pg 350

Allie & C. Bell sell to G. P. Sallee and A. J. Crawford.  $1050.00, $300.00 paid down, with one payment of $750 at 8% interest, for "a certain tract of land in Pulaski Co. Ky, on the waters of Pitman Creek...", "beginning on a black oak & two hickories, the old Dutton corner...", "containing 40 acres more or less."  and a "Second tract adjoining above and both constituting one farm..", "in or near Joe Dutton's line...", ""to a stone, now McPherson's corner...", "containing 72 acres more or less...".   This deed refers to the deed conveyed to Allie by R. O. Heath & wife March 11, 1907.   A trade of the two farms. 

North of Somerset, Kentucky - click to enlarge

Click on this map and you can find Pitman creek to the right of Hwy 39, which was called Crab Orchard Pike back then.  At the top of the map you'll see Crimson Dr, and on Find A Grave, a map of the Vaught Cemetery (mentioned in following deeds) shows it at the end of Crimson Dr.  

From Oren's narration this is when they leave Kentucky again:  "In the summer of 1910, the folks were on the move again.  They rented their farm, the old Tom Meece place, and I joined them and we moved to Oklahoma...". 

Deed dated November 23, 1911, Mortgage Book M-19 Pg 371

"I Allie Bell & husband Cicero Bell... being indebted to The Citizens Bank of the sum of Three Hundred Dollars...I hereby bargain, sell and convey, by way of mortgage, unto said Citizens Bank, the following described property, viz.:  Being the same land conveyed to Allie Bell on the 31st day of Jany, 1910 by G. P. Sallee & etc....".  A note at the bottom is written:  "The debt for which the above mortgage was given having been paid in full we hereby release same completely.  This Dec. 12th 1914."  Just a little bit of bank business.

Deed dated December 21, 1911, Deed Book 75 Pg 145

Ben P. & Lela E. Hines and Walter & Desda Elrod sell to Allie Bell.  $350.00, $100 down and balance in 4 payments at 8% interest.   "on the waters of Pitman creek...", "on a poplar now down at corner of fence at Grave yard...", "to a stone Meece's corner in Gipson line...", "to a stone A. Vaught & P. J. Meece corner...", "containing 30 acres more or less."  So, this deed is for the farm they bought after living in Kansas, as Oren said:   "After a year, my father was ready to go back to Kentucky.  So, they moved from Ionia back to Kentucky."  This would be the last farm they would buy in Kentucky. 

Deed dated November 9, 1914, Deed Book 75 Pg 24

Cicero & Allie Bell sell to Mrs. Anna Kipp for $1450.00 cash in hand paid.  "on the waters of Pitman Creek...", "at a poplar stump at the Vaught graveyard, old corner, thence old line between this farm and the Hines farm...", "corner between this farm and the Gilmore farm where Gilmore farm calls for a stake...", "to a small hickory, where deeds call for a stone, the South-east corner of the tract bought by J. T. Meece from Gilmores..." .   The land from the deed dated December 21, 1911.  After this sale they paid off the mortgage from November 1911.  And back to Kansas they went.

Deed dated February 16, 1917 Deed Book 78 Pg 26

"..we Allie Bell and C. Bell who having deeded to G. P. Sallee and A. J. Crawford... on the 31st day of Jany, 1910... whereas a lien was retained in said deed to secure an unpaid balance of $750.00 and the debt having been fully paid, now we... do hereby name, constitute and appoint V. P. Smith of Somerset, Ky. our lawful atourney in fact, to release the said lien in the said deed to us, and to do all acts pertaining thereto, that may be necessary for the releasing and satisfying the said lien as fully as we might do ourselves were we present in person."  A Power of Attorney, signed by J. G. McLinn, Notary Public of Mitchell County, Kansas was sent to the Pulaski County Clerk, C. M. Langdon which he recorded on the 24th day of March, 1917.  By this time, Cicero & Allie had moved their family out of Kentucky for the last time.

Somerset, Kentucky

It's interesting to me that when Cicero & Allie are the Grantee's (buyers), the deeds are in Allie's name only.  When they are the Grantor's (sellers), he is named with along her.  There must have been a reason for that.  Another thing - I have always thought that Cicero's middle initial was C. not S., and I've never seen what the initial stands for.  Maybe it's Silas?  Cicero's Grandfather was John Silas Bell.

Uncle Oren's memory was fantastic!  I took his recorded history as a challenge to find these deeds.  Now I can piece together a better timeline of the places where my Great Grandparents raised their family.  I can better visualize, at least on a map, the approximate locations of their farms and the store.  With this information now maybe I can find out the name of the store.  This doesn't end here, but this is all for now.

Thursday, August 4, 2016

Those Places Thursday - "On the waters of Meadow Creek"

Monday, I posted the transcription of Bell family history (you can read it here), including mentions of several places bought and sold by Cicero Bell 1900 through 1910 or so.  On vacation this summer, I was able to visit the court houses in Monticello and Somerset Kentucky to look for deeds for these properties.  I give full credit to my husband for finding several and helping me get them. My experience in court house work is limited since they aren’t open on weekends.  Our first stop was the courthouse in Monticello for the Wayne county deeds.

Deed dated August 28, 1901, Deed Book 35 Pg 173-174

The heirs of Berry Rogers were the sellers (E. R. & Mattie VanHoozer, R. & H. A. Meadows, D. B. & Margaret Morris, John & Lizzie Chrisman, H. C. Rogers, David & Diza Rogers, Hettie & Edgar Matchett, John & Martha Rogers, W. B. & Eliza Jane White, G. W. & Mattie Rogers, Lenora & Rilley Correll, Barbara & H. M. Eads, Noah & Catherine Rogers, B. R. & Mollie Creekmore).  They conveyed to Allie (Allie mentioned first) & Cicero Bell, land in Wayne County, Kentucky "on the Monticello & Burnside Pike".  This image shows the confusing mess of compass points that is the metes & bounds system to describe the tract of land.  So different from the square sections we're used to in Nebraska.  To determine the exact location takes much more time, effort and information than I have now.  But the names of their neighbors and some landmarks mentioned are worth noting -  John Simpson's corner on the north side of pike, the old Daugherty line, school house, Tate's corner, J. C. Rogers corner, Dick's line, C. T. Willhite's corner, Tolegate lot, a coal house. Those will help if I ever work more to find the locations. 

So, this matches well with Oren's history: "we moved to a new farm which was located on the turnpike between Monticello and Burnside... and settled near Mill Springs...  This new farm was known as the Rogers farm.  Here we lived for a period of about 4 years.  During that period, Ben and Ed were born." 

We found more deeds than I expected, but later I realized there were two we didn't find.  The sale of the first farm that had belonged to Allie and her first husband.  Also, we didn't find a sale of the Rogers farm, unless the following deeds sold off portions of it and the original description no longer applies.  

Deed dated November 12, 1902, Deed Book 33 Pg 293-294

Cicero and Allie Bell sell to G. M. Muncy and R. F. Sloan "for the purpose of a joint road running from the Pike over the lands of first and second parties hereto to the lands of C. T. Willhite on Meadow Creek".  Some of the description includes:  "Beginning at a cedar on the south side of the Pike, J. C. Rogers corner...", mentioning Roger's corner several times, and "to a Hickory sd Roger's corner on Tate line...".  

Deed dated November 12, 1902, Deed Book 35 Pg 363-364

C. T. & Elzira Willhite sell to Cicero Bell and J. W. Bell (his brother John) "land in the County of Wayne, State of Kentucky, on the waters of Meadow Creek".  The description includes "Beginning at a small Sourwood, Millers corner on Muncy line..."  and "in the middle of Meadow Creek, then down the creek with the meanders thereof..." and it describes every twist and turn of the creek.  Coming to "a stone on north side of sd creek (Shearer's corner), then Shearer's line...", "to a stake on sd line, Miller's corner, then Miller's the beginning".  

Deed dated April 16, 1904, Deed Book 35 Pg 474-475 

J. W. & Lizzie Bell and County of Boyle, State of Kentucky sell to Cicero & Allie Bell their part of the land bought in 1902.  It is the same description of land.  Looks like John and Lizzie were living in Boyle County at this time.

Deed dated November 21, 1904, Deed Book 36 Pg 349-350

Cicero & Allie sell their Wayne County farm to J. W. Simpson "it being the same tract of land conveyed to said Cicero & Allie Bell from J. W. Bell and wife by deed date of April 16, 1904."  

Downtown Monticello, Kentucky
These were all the deeds we found listed in the index for Cicero or Allie Bell.  After we left the courthouse, we went right next door to the Wayne County Historical Society.  Knowing there was a slim chance, I asked a woman there if they could give us an idea where the land was and showed her the deeds and the transcription of Oren's history.  As she was reading, she gasped and told another woman that the deeds were for property on Meadow Creek.  It just so happened that the Willhite's and Muncy's were her family.  She was able to tell us about where the property was - south of Mill Springs if I understood her correctly.

Before we left Monticello, we took a quick tour of the Wayne County Museum, then went on to Mill Springs.  The Brown-Lanier House wasn't open, but we walked down to the Mill.  Then we just drove around that area for a little bit.  

Next I will post the deeds we found in Somerset.