Julia Bressler and Clara Ellis

Julia Bressler is my great-grandmother.  I’m guessing that Clara Ellis was a friend, perhaps from church.  I never heard of Clara, but I love this photo.  I like the similarity of their pose, their hands, and the fabric print of their dresses.  They are wearing lace-up shoes with low heels.  From the look of Clara’s ankles, her feet hurt.  Julia was born in 1859; she’s 86 in this photo.  February 1945.  Probably Wayne, Nebraska.

Uncle John’s Letter 1920

A letter written to my father (Frank Claycomb) when he was 5 years old. From his Uncle John (Bressler).

June 11, 1920

Dear Frank:

Has your pony come yet? Tell your Daddy I have been by Mrs. Snyder’s several times, but have never been in. What do you do all the time?

I will send this letter to you by airplane to Omaha and then from there to Wayne on the train. With love, Uncle John.

Ida Duncan Yelvington

The mystery of Ida Duncan Yelvington was solved just over 20 years ago.  Ida married into my Duncan family – married Francis Duncan, adopted son of Thomas Cation Duncan.  Francis died shortly after their marriage.  So Ida is a bit on the fringe for me, but they had moved to San Diego where my family lived.  So I was curious about what happened to her.  Actually it’s a fascinating story, just not close to me (I wrote more about it here.)  So I asked Mom about Ida, any idea what happened to her.  No, Mom didn’t remember anything.  Finally I found a second marriage for Ida – to Calvin Yelvington.  I shouted to Mom ‘I found her!’  To which Mom replied, ‘Oh, I knew Ida Yelvington.’  Sigh.  But that’s how our memories work.  I understand that more now that I’m older.  I think I just remembered her maiden name – Utley.

Here’s a card Ida sent to my folks, probably in 1939 when my sister was born.  I love seeing the signature – the whole signature.

Hairy Heirloom

It’s more properly called a friendship album.  I got a chance to see one with a distant family connection.  It was made by Emma Osborn with help from her sister Erista, beginning in 1860.  Emma married my great-grandfather’s brother, Thomas C. Duncan in 1866.  Besides poems and obituaries, the book contained locks of hair – from children, friends, and deceased folks.

The woman who generously shared it with me – and provided these photos – found it at an estate sale.  Her research brought her to my blog.  I’m grateful for her diligence.  If the book had a more direct line for me, I would have considered buying it.  It later sold for several hundred dollars.

T. C. Duncan served in the Wisconsin cavalry in the Civil War.

An entry for Francis Osborn Duncan, the adopted son of Emma and T. C.

Lots of genealogical information here.

Hair from a deceased woman braided.

A child’s lock of hair. I think the black ribbon indicates the person has died.

One of Emma’s poems.

A lot of hand work has gone into these tributes.

More intricate designs.

A funny story from our visit is here.

2027 Stanley Hills Drive Hollywood California

This is where my parents lived when they first came to California in 1939.  They rented 2027 Stanley Hills Drive in the Hollywood hills.  The house was built in 1938.  They may have been the first tenants.

2027 is at the center of the photo – part of a duplex.

It’s fun to compare it with a Google Earth shot taken in December 2017.

Local News Column 1890

I like reading obituaries for their information and often for their wording.  How many ways can you say someone has died?  This was not meant to be an obituary, it was just in the local news column, but the wording is not what we would use today.

“The aged wife of Mr. Thomas Duncan who has been with her son, Dr. Duncan at LaMoille, had a stroke of apoplexy recently, but the Gazette reports her as improving.  Dr. F. Duncan, formerly of this city, is one of her sons.
Since writing the above we learn that the old lady died.”

Mrs. Duncan is Eliza Cation Duncan.  She died 9 Dec 1890.  LaMoille is in Illinois and was the home of Dr. James C. Duncan.

 

 

Michael Gallagher

Michael Gallagher, son of John and Martha Gallagher, was the second husband of Cassie Ann Rosenberry, my great great grandmother.  Her first husband was Orson Patchen (Patchin) with whom she had two children, Edgar and Nettie.  Nettie (Annette MaryJane Patchen) was my great grandmother.  Orson Patchen died in the Civil War.  Cassie then married Michael Gallagher.  They had no children.  Michael also died in the war and Cassie applied for his widow’s pension.  These are some of the forms from that file.

Civil War pension files can have wonderful information in them.  In this one, it lists parents’ names, verifies the marriage, and indicates no children.  The best tip I learned about getting the file was to request the entire file to be copied.  Otherwise someone is going to choose which pages you get.  Disclaimer:  I got these files many years ago, so the procedure might have changed.

As Michael’s widow, she did get a pension of $8.00 per month.
These are the proofs offered in her claim.
This page has great information on it – parents, dates, marriage!
And more info here.
My favorite part is seeing her signature on the sheet above.

 

Duncan English Smith & Byington

Sounds like a law firm, but it’s just more photos from these families.  Previous photos here.

Samuel English, father of Lyman and Frank English. Frank is seated and his brother is standing.

Mamie English and Allen Smith

Allen & Mamie Smith with their sons, Myron English and Harold Allen

Belle English and John Byington.

Front: Harriet Byington and Eliza Duncan English. Back: Belle English and John Byington.

Eliza Duncan & Frank English Family

Eliza Duncan is the daughter of our immigrant ancestors, Eliza Cation and Thomas Duncan.  She married Dr. Frank English.  They had two daughters, Mamie and Belle.  Mamie married Allen Newcomb Smith (two sons: Myron English and Harold Allen).  Belle married John Edward Byington (no children).  Myron provided these photos.  Part of his story is here.  The family lived in the Dixon, Illinois area.

Eliza Duncan English

Dr. Frank English

Frank, Eliza, Mamie, and Belle English.

Mamie and Belle English

Mamie and Belle English

Mamie English