52 Ancestors: #2 den Här an d’Madame REIFFER, a Brick Wall

Last week I introduced you to my 2017 New Season of the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks Challenge with 52 Ancestors: #1 The WILMES-SCHOOD Family of Diekirch 1739-1825. As in 2014 and 2015, I have a plan for my posts in 2017. I will be writing about all of my children’s 5th great-grandparents who have not yet been featured. In 2014 their American ancestors in this generation were spotlighted.

We have 64 sets of 5th great-grandparents. In this pedigree chart, on the right, are the first 8 sets of my children’s 5ggp. The MEDER-LAMBERT family was featured in several posts last year so I began with the next couple, WILMES-SCHOOD.

5thggp
Pedigree chart generated using Ancestral Quest 15

I had planned to skip Théodore REIFFER‘s parents as they are unknown (as seen in the green boxes above) and continue with the parents of his wife Elisabetha CLOS. I even “announced” in the last post that Elisabeth’s parents would be up next. But one of the nice things about blogging is you can change your mind and re-schedule posts. 🙂

I didn’t expect to find a key to open a door in the REIFFER brick wall in the near future. However, why should I skip this set of 5th great-grandparents? By writing all I know and don’t know, I may find someone who’s already knocked down the brick wall or who may be able to help me open the door.

1831deaththeodorereifer
1831 Death Record Nr. 23 [1]
Théodore REIFFER was born about 1771 in Gilsdorf in the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg.[1] His age and place of birth were listed on his death record. I suspect he was not born in Gilsdorf and it was an error made by his son-in-law who was the informant for this death.

I searched page by page through the church records of Diekirch from 1768 to 1776. In later times the civil records for Gilsdorf would be found in Bettendorf. However, the church records for the village were recorded in Diekirch during the time period I am interested in.

I reviewed the records found for his children. None of the records included information on Théodore’s place of birth. His age was consistent with the estimated 1771 birth year in all records except for one where he was seen a little younger, born about 1774.

On all records found for Théodore, he was seen as a sheep herder which explains his moving around so much. Records were found starting in Landscheid and going to Wahlhausen, Tandel, Fouhren, Bastendorf, and Gilsdorf. His wife was from Körperich.

map
Google map

I consulted the Körperich Family Book[2] to see if there were any REIFFER connections in the villages of the area. A few REIFFER families were in the area for a later time period. One man, Johann REIFFER, born abt. 1767 in Gralingen to parents from Pütscheid seemed interesting.  If you look at the map these places are to the left and right of the arrow pointing from Landscheid to Wahlhausen.

I searched Rob Deltgen’s site for the parents, Nicolas REIFFER and Margaretha SCHMITZ. He has the couple with the son, found above in the Körperich FB, and several daughters. No other sons. What caught my attention was the place of birth of two of the daughters: Nachtmanderscheid. This lies between Landscheid and Wahlhausen. A coincidence, or could this REIFFER family be Théodore’s family?

I searched for the marriage record of the couple and found they may have married in Brandenbourg in 1759. The groom was named Nicolas REIFFER and was from Nachtmanderscheid. The entry for the marriage in the church records has only the groom’s name. It looks like the person writing the information was interrupted and never went back to write the name of the bride.

My next step is to search through the church records of Brandenbourg for baptisms from 1759 to 1780 for the children of this couple. I hope to find those mentioned on Rob’s site and perhaps some he has not found. Will Théodore be one of them?

If the children of this family are found in the Brandenbourg church records, I plan to check the same for the deaths of the parents.

For the time being, all I know is that den Här an d’Madame REIFFER, parents of Théodore, died before 31 January 1833. This is known as they were mentioned although not named in the 1833 marriage record of Théodore’s daughter Susanna. She married after the death of her parents and confirmed, along with a witness, that her grandparents were also deceased.

den Här an d’Madame = Mr. and Mrs.

bestwishescathy1Sources:
[1] Luxembourg, Registres d’état civil, 1793-1923 (images), FamilySearch (original records at Luxembourg National Archives, Plateau du Saint-Esprit, Luxembourg), Bettendorf > Mariages 1817-1890 Décès 1800-1859 > image 1109 of 1494. 1831 Death Record No. 23. (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-267-12456-41136-19?cc=1709358&wc=M9M6-2ZY:2071013250 : accessed 04 Apr 2013).
[2] Richard Schaffner, comp., Familienbuch der Pfarrei St. Hubertus Körperich in der Südeifel mit Körperich, Niedersgegen, Obersgegen, Gentingen, Roth an der Our, Seimerich und Scheuerhof (später Neuscheuerhof) 1689-1899 (2002).

© 2017, copyright Cathy Meder-Dempsey. All rights reserved.

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Old Photographs Saved From Trash Can ~ #85 The Strangest Thing Happened

The strangest thing happened while I was looking at the tintypes in this collection. I was setting up to scan one of an unidentified couple at a higher resolution (DPI) to bring out more detail so that I could write about it.

Since I had the scanner set up and the photographs at hand, I decided to scan all ten of the tintypes. One of them, the first one I shared in the post 52 Ancestors: #14 Albert Spencer LILLIE (1848-1913) ~ Old Photographs Saved From Trash Can, was glued to a card with writing on the front bottom and on the back.

ASLWhen I wrote about this tintype in April 2015 (has it been nearly two years?), I had only the digital images I received per email from my cousin Joe. It was my first post using the photographs from his collection and I knew nothing at all about vintage photography.

With the actual tintype in hand, I noticed the card it was attached to was loose at the bottom where the name A. S. Lillie was written. I took a closer look, shining a light in under the plate. It was loose all along the edges. As I was handling it, the card seemed to barely be attached. I pulled the card away a bit and it detached from the plate.

The tintype must have been stored in humid conditions with the card. It appears to have rusted and gotten stuck and not glued on purpose. Once detached, I saw the card was actually a carte de visite.

1870albertspencerlilliecdv1870albertspencerlilliecdvbackAlbert Spencer LILLIE ca. 1870
Photo type: Carte de visite (CDV)
Card size: 2 3/8″ x 4 1/4″
Card color: beige
Card edges: rounded corners
Image size: ca. 1 1/2″
Border: a thin inner & a thicker outer line
Front imprint: none
Back imprint: none
Photographer: none
Labeling: handwriting on back & front
Damage: rust from a tintype

Four different persons wrote information on the back of this CDV, which appeared to identify the tintype when I wrote the original post. In ink at the top: Albert S. Lillie. Directly below in pencil and very faded only the beginning of Albert can be read. In the center, again in pencil, A. S. Lillie age 22 yrs. At the bottom, in yet another handwriting in ballpoint pen, Isaac Lillie father.

Albert S. LILLIE (1848-1913) is my closest relative in this collection of old photos. He was the nephew of my 3rd great-grandmother Clementine (Gowing) DEMPSEY.

The border is a thin inner line and a thicker outer line and the corners are rounded. This as well as the size and placement of the image help to date the picture between 1869-1872. The image on the carte de visite is a young man identified as Albert Spencer LILLIE age 22 years as written both on the front and back. Born in 1848, this would mean the CDV is from about 1870.

1870albertspencerlilliecdvcropped
Close up of the image on the carte de visite

Is there a method to remove the rust from the front of the photograph? Should I try using a razor blade to lift a little bit of rust from the outer part of the card – as a test? I would love to be able to see his whole face and be able to compare it with the other two photos I have of Albert.

While scanning the tintypes I made another discovery which I will share next week. I hope it will make up for leaving you hanging with yet another mystery to be solved. Who is the man in the tintype which was attached to Albert’s photo?

bestwishescathy1

More about this collection, how it came to be in my possession,
and links to previous posts in the series can be found here.

Please contact me!
Are you related to a person mentioned in this post? Send an email to
openingdoorsinbrickwalls @ pt.lu or message me on my Facebook page
Opening Doors in Brick Walls.

© 2017, copyright Cathy Meder-Dempsey. All rights reserved.

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52 Ancestors: #1 The WILMES-SCHOOD Family of Diekirch 1739-1825

Welcome to a New Season of 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks. You’ve never heard of the challenge? Amy Johnson Crow came up with this brilliant way to get your ancestors’ stories written in her first post for 2014. I wrote about 52 of my American ancestors in 2014 and 104 (52 European ancestral couples) in 2015.  You can find my entire list of ancestors I’ve written about here.

Gangolphus WILMES & Anna Margaretha SCHOOD

Genealogy Sketch

Name: Gangolf “Gangolphe” WILMES
Parents: Michaelis WILMES and Barbara JACQUEMIN
Spouse: Anne Marguerite SCHOOD
Parents of spouse: Nicolai SCHEID (SCHOOD) and Anna Maria FETT
Whereabouts: Diekirch, Grand Duchy of Luxembourg
Relationship to Cathy Meder-Dempsey: 4th great-grandfather of husband

1. Gangolphus WILMES
2. Apolonia “Apolline” WILMES
3. Theodore MEDER
4. Franz “François” MEDER
5. Johann Peter “Jean-Pierre” MEDER
6. Marcel Mathias MEDER
7. Cathy Meder-Dempsey’s husband Living MEDER

All records for this family were found in the church and civil records of the town of Diekirch. Births, baptisms, marriages, and deaths mentioned below occurred in Diekirch unless otherwise stated.

diekirchsignGangolphus WILMES, the son of Michaelis WILMES (1700-1783) and Barbara JACQUEMIN (1705-1751), was born and baptized on 5 April 1739. His godparents were Gangolphus Walbrüll and Margaretha Juttels. The church record shows the surname spelled WILLEMS.[1] He was the middle child of the nine documented children found for his parents.

1739gangolphuswilmesbapt
1739 Baptismal Record of Gangolphus WILMES [1]
His mother, Barbara, died on 25 October 1751.[2] On 5 March 1753, a little over sixteen months later, his father married his second wife, Marie THOBES (1727-1792).[3] They were the parents of four documented children.Further research (page by page viewing of the church records) needs to be performed to confirm the number of siblings and half-siblings Gangolf actually had.Anna Margaretha SCHOOD, daughter of Nicolai SCHEID (SCHOOD) and Anna Maria FETT, was born and baptized on 24 November 1741. Her godparents were Joannis Feth, Synodalis (a church counselor) and Anna Margaretha, frate olim (sibling of old) Feth.[4]
1741annamargarethaschoodtbapt
1741 Anna Margaretha SCHOODT baptismal record [4]
Anna Margaretha’s surname was seen as Schoodt, Schood, Schod, Schoed, and Schoedt in records found for her and her children. Different spellings of surnames was not unusual during this time period. To avoid confusion I have used the spelling found when her parents married: SCHOOD.When I started to look into the WILMES-SCHOOD couple I did not have Anna Margaretha’s parents, siblings, or her date of birth/baptism. I will share how I found the records in another post. For now, I would like to point out that FETT and FETH are very likely the same family name, only a different spelling. I will be able to confirm or refute this claim after I have done further research on Anna Margaretha’s mother’s FETT family.

Gangolphus and Anna Margaretha – The Marriage

My children’s 5th great-grandparents, Gangolphus WILMES and Anna Margaretha SCHOOD, were married on 29 October 1764.[5] No further information was included in the entry for the marriage in the church record. No parents of the bride and groom, no age for the bride and groom, and no witnesses. Other entries made on the same page, in a different handwriting, have a bit more information on the parents of the bride or groom. It looks like two persons were keeping the records. My children’s ancestors’ marriage was recorded by the one who wrote short entries with little more than the names and date.

1764wilmesschoodmarriage
1764 Marriage Record [5]
Gangolphus and Anna Margaretha – Become Parents

Gangolphus and Anna Margaretha’s first child was born less than two weeks before their first wedding anniversary. Susanna WILMES was born and baptized on 18 October 1765. Her godparents were Joannes Preusen and Susanna Schodt.[6] The godmother was likely her 21 years old aunt Susanna, her mother’s sister.

1765susannawilmesbapt
1765 Baptismal Record for the child Susanna [6]
Gangolphus and Anna Margaretha did not wait long for their second child who was born thirteen months later. Elisabetha was born and baptized on 23 November 1766. Her godparents were Christian Flick and Elisabetha Schoodt.[7] The godmother Elisabetha was likely a sister of the mother of the child, however I cannot say if she was Elisabetha age 27 or Maria Elisabetha age 20. Births of these two ladies have been found but marriages and/or deaths records have not been searched for.
1766elisabethwilmesbapt
1766 Baptismal Record of the child Elisabetha [7]
The third child of this couple was of my children’s 4th great-grandmother Apolonia WILMES. She was born and baptized on 27 February 1769. Her godparents were Nicolas Theys and Apolonia Scholtes.[8]
1769apoloniawilmesbapt
1769 Baptismal Record of the child Apolonia [8]
Gangolphus and Anna Margaretha finally had a son when their fourth child was born. Nicolaus WILMES was born and baptized on 19 February 1772. His godparents were Nicolaus Unden and Maria Barbara Clemang.[9]
1772nicolauswilmesbapt
1772 Baptismal Record of the child Nicolaus [9]
The fifth child was once again a girl. Anna Margaretha Wilmes was born and baptized on 5 July 1774. Her godparents were Michel Wilmes, a brother of the father, and Anna Margaretha Preuser.[10]
1774annamargarethawilmesbapt
1774 Baptismal Record of the child Anna Margaretha [10]
On 16 February 1777, two and a half years later, the sixth child Margaretha WILMES was born and baptized. Her godparents were Nicolas Wilmes, a brother of the father, and Margaretha Frison.[11]
1777margarethawilmesbapt
1777 Baptismal Record of the child Margaretha [11]
Four years later another daughter joined the family and was given the same name as the last child. Margaretha WILMES was born and baptized on 7 January 1781. Her godparents were Joes (Joannes) Schumacher of Hollenfels and Margaretha Preuser of Diekirch.[12]
1781margarethawilmesbapt
1781 Baptismal Record of the child Margaretha [12]
The baptismal record of this child is the first record showing a signature for the father “Gangolff Wilmes” as he signed above, on the right side near the bottom. It is 1781 and Gangolphus would soon turn 42.

An Aside Concerning Godparents

As seen above, godparents included both the mother’s and the father’s siblings. What of the other godparents? Preusen and Preuser, names seen for three godparents of the children mentioned above, are likely the same surname. Were they also relatives?

Further research is planned as this is a name which is already in my children’s family tree. Thomas PREISEN (PREUSEN) and Anne Marie SCHRANTZ were the parents of their 4th great-grandmother Margaretha PREUSEN. It will be interesting to see if there is a connection.

The Children’s Mother Dies

1781annamargarethaschodtdeath
1781 Death and burial record of Anna Margaretha SCHOOD [13]
Gangolphus’ wife Anna Margaretha died on 12 January 1781, five days after giving birth to Margaretha.[13] Her age was given as 34 although she had turned 39 the previous November. Gangolphus was left with seven children to care for. The youngest was only 5 days old when her mother died and the oldest was 15 years old.
1781marriagewilmescolman
1781 Marriage Record for Gangolphus Wilmes and his second wife [14]
The widower waited six weeks to remarry. He married Maria Catharina Colman, daughter of Andreas Colman and Catharina Wevers, on 24 February 1781.[14] The fact that he was the widower of Anna Margaretha SCHOOD is included in the entry. His brother Damian WILMES was one of the witnesses. Once again we see the signature “Gangolff Wilmes” which would suggest that in day to day life he went by Gangolff while the church authorities concerned his name to be Gangolphus.

Further Deaths in the Family

Sadly, the death of Gangolphus’ wife and mother of his children was not the last during the year. His youngest, baby Margaretha died at the age of seven months on 14 August 1781. The death entry includes the name of her deceased mother.[15]

1781margarethawilmesdeath
1781 Death entry for the youngest daughter Margaretha [15]
She was followed two weeks later by her sister who was also baptized with the name Margaretha. The death record of the second child has the correct age at death but when she died on 31 August 1781 her name was given as Elisabetha. As with her baby sister, the name of her deceased mother was included in the entry.[16]
1781elisabethawilmesdeath
1781 Death entry for the daughter Elisabetha baptized Margaretha [16]
The five remaining WILMES children lost their paternal grandfather Michaelis WILMES on 21 November 1783 at the age of 80 years.[17]
1783michaelwilmesdeath
1781 Death record of Michael Wilmes, Gangolphus’ father [17]
Three years later Gangolphus buried his only son Nicolaus Wilmes who died on 19 April 1786 at the age of fourteen.[18]
1786nicolauswilmesdeath
1786 Death entry for son Nicolaus [18]

Four Remaining Daughters

Of the four remaining daughters, two have not been traced. The oldest Susanna and the youngest Anna Margaretha. It is not known if they married or even died young. They were not found in the index of marriages for Diekirch which could mean they died young, married in another town, or never married.

The first of Gangolphus and Anna Margaretha’s daughters to marry was Apolonia “Apolline” WILMES. She married Johann Nicolas “Jean Nicolas” MEDER (1766-1844) on 13 January 1794.[19]

Apolonia’s older sister Elisabetha married André KOENIG (1769- ) on 20 June 1796.[20]

Apolonia and Elisabetha gave Gangolphus ten grandchildren, three of whom predeceased him.

Gangolphus is Again Widowed

1811marguerithetholmangdeath
1811 Death record of Marguerithe Tholmang, wife of Gangolffe Wilmes [21]
On 31 March 1811 “Gangolffe Wilmes,” a 77 years old day laborer was the informant for the death of his wife, Marguerithe THOLMANG who was 76 at the time of death.[21]This name does not match the name seen for the woman he married in 1781. The marriage record shows her name as Maria Catharina Colman, daughter of Andreas Colman and Catharina Wevers. Was this the same lady he married in 1781 or was he married three times? Hopefully further research will solve this question.Gangolphus WILMES outlived his last wife by fifteen years, long enough to see two of his grandsons marry in 1821[22] and 1822.[23]1824apolloniawillmesdeathHis daughter Apolonia, my children’s ancestor, died on 26 November 1824.[24]

1825jeangoutwillmesdeathGangolf “Gangolphe” WILMES died on 22 January 1825 at the age of 85, outliving his father by five years.[25] His death was reported by his grandson, Jeangout KOENIG. Jeangout is the French version of the name Gangolf. Gangolphus’ name was given as Jeangout WILLMES and his age as 82 years. According to the death record, he was the widower of Marie TOLLMAN – similar to Marie Catherine Collman seen in 1781 but not a match. Could her maiden name on the marriage record have been transcribed incorrectly and did this influence my interpretation of the handwriting?

1835elisbethwilmesdeathAt the time of his death, the only known living child of the WILMES-SCHOOD couple was Elisabeth WILMES who died ten years later on 10 December 1835 at the age of 70.[26]

Next week, I will continue with another set of my children’s 5th great-grandparents, the parents of Elisabetha CLOS. The parents of her husband, Théodore REIFFER are at this time unknown and I am not expecting to find the key to a door in his brick wall in the near future.

bestwishescathy1Sources:
[1] Luxembourg, registres paroissiaux, 1601-1948 (images), FamilySearch (original records at Luxembourg National Archives, Plateau du Saint-Esprit, Luxembourg), Diekirch > Baptêmes 1647-1664, 1672-1743, mariages 1698-1741, sépultures 1698-1729 > image 70 of 240. 1739 Baptismal Record (left page, last entry).(https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-L9WM-MQBR?cc=2037955&wc=STHC-B8B%3A1500890501%2C1500890502 : accessed 23 Dec 2016).
[2] Ibid., Diekirch > Sépultures 1743-1793 > image 12 of 140. 1751 Death Record (left page, 2nd entry). (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-L9WM-LC3F?cc=2037955&wc=STH6-6Y7%3A1500890501%2C1500929176 : accessed 26 December 2016).
[3] Ibid., Diekirch > Mariages 1743-1794 > image 13 of 122. 1753 Marriage Record (left page, last entry).(https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-L9WM-MQK6?cc=2037955&wc=STHC-B87%3A1500890501%2C1500891002 : accessed 6 January 2017).
[4] Ibid., Diekirch > Baptêmes 1647-1664, 1672-1743, mariages 1698-1741, sépultures 1698-1729 > image 72 of 240. 1741 Baptismal Record (right page, 4th entry from bottom). (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-L9WM-M73M?cc=2037955&wc=STHC-B8B%3A1500890501%2C1500890502 : accessed 5 January 2017).
[5] Ibid., Diekirch > Mariages 1743-1794 > image 28 of 122. 1764 Marriage Record (left page, 5th entry). (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-L9WM-M7XL?cc=2037955&wc=STHC-B87%3A1500890501%2C1500891002 : accessed 22 December 2016).
[6] Ibid., Diekirch > Baptêmes 1743-1790, confirmations 1768-1789 > image 128 of 373. 1765 Baptismal Record (left page, 4th entry).  (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-99WM-LHTM?cc=2037955&wc=STHZ-ZNL%3A1500890501%2C1500918030 : acessed 22 December 2016).
[7] Ibid., Diekirch > Baptêmes 1743-1790, confirmations 1768-1789 > image 134 of 373. 1766 Baptismal Record (right page, last entry). (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-1951-32421-7986-99?cc=2037955&wc=STHZ-ZNL:1500890501,1500918030 : accessed 22 December 2016).
[8] Ibid., Diekirch > Baptêmes 1743-1790, confirmations 1768-1789 > image 149 of 373. 1769 Baptismal record (left page, 4th entry). (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-1971-32421-7593-86?cc=2037955&wc=STHZ-ZNL:1500890501,1500918030 : accessed 22 June 2015).
[9] Ibid., Diekirch > Baptêmes 1743-1790, confirmations 1768-1789 > image 169 of 373. 1772 Baptismal Record (right page, 3rd entry).(https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-99WM-LHFF?cc=2037955&wc=STHZ-ZNL%3A1500890501%2C1500918030 : 9 January 2015).
[10] Ibid., Diekirch > Baptêmes 1743-1790, confirmations 1768-1789 > image 185 of 373. 1774 Baptismal Record (right page, 2nd to last entry). (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QSQ-G9WM-LH3Z?cc=2037955&wc=STHZ-ZNL%3A1500890501%2C1500918030 : accessed 23 Dec 2016).
[11] Ibid., Diekirch > Baptêmes 1743-1790, confirmations 1768-1789 > image 203 of 373. 1777 Baptismal Record (left page, 2nd to last entry).(https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-L9WM-LCG2?cc=2037955&wc=STHZ-ZNL%3A1500890501%2C1500918030 : accessed 22 Dec 2016).
[12] Ibid., Diekirch > Baptêmes, mariages 1779-1786, décès 1779-1785 > image 67 of 208. 1781 Baptismal Record (right page, 1st entry).(https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-99WS-4QGL?cc=2037955&wc=STHD-GPF%3A1500890501%2C1500945258 : accessed 22 December 2016).
[13] Ibid., Diekirch > image 79 of 208. 1781 Death Record, died at age 34 years (right page, 3rd entry). (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-L9WS-4Q6G?cc=2037955&wc=STHD-GPF%3A1500890501%2C1500945258 : accessed 22 December 2016).
[14] Ibid., Diekirch > Baptêmes, mariages 1779-1786, décès 1779-1785 > image 88 of 208. 1781 Marriage Record (left page, last entry).(https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QSQ-G9WS-4Q86?cc=2037955&wc=STHD-GPF%3A1500890501%2C1500945258 : accessed 22 December 2016),.
[15] Ibid., Diekirch > Baptêmes, mariages 1779-1786, décès 1779-1785 > image 82 of 208. 1781 Death Record (left page, last entry). (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-99WS-4QFV?cc=2037955&wc=STHD-GPF%3A1500890501%2C1500945258 : acccessed 22 December 2016).
[16] Ibid., Diekirch > Baptêmes, mariages 1779-1786, décès 1779-1785 > image 83 of 208. 1781 Death Record, age at death 4 years (left page, 4th entry). (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-L9WS-4QN6?cc=2037955&wc=STHD-GPF%3A1500890501%2C1500945258 : accessed 22 December 2016).
[17] Ibid., Diekirch > Baptêmes, mariages 1779-1786, décès 1779-1785 > image 136 of 208. 1783 Death Record (right page, 2nd entry).(https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QSQ-G9WS-4Q4G?cc=2037955&wc=STHD-GPF%3A1500890501%2C1500945258 : accessed 3 January 2017).
[18] Ibid., Diekirch > Baptêmes, mariages, sépultures 1786-1793, 1795 > image 5 of 204. 1786 Death Record (left page, 2nd entry from bottom). (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QSQ-G9WS-4W5H?cc=2037955&wc=STHD-GPX%3A1500890501%2C1500981574 : accessed 6 January 2017).
[19] Ibid., Diekirch > Mariages 1743-1794 > image 116 of 122. 1794 Marriage Record (lower right). (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-1951-32400-5311-96?cc=2037955&wc=STHC-B87:1500890501,1500891002 : accessed 28 June 2015).
[20] Ibid., Diekirch > Baptêmes 1791-1795, mariages 1794-1798, 1800-1803, sépultures 1794-1795 > image 110 of 243. 1796 Marriage Record (right page, last entry). (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QSQ-G9WS-47DM?cc=2037955&wc=STHD-2JW%3A1500890501%2C1501017982 : accessed 23 December 2016).
[21] Luxembourg, Registres d’état civil, 1662-1941 (images), FamilySearch (original records at Luxembourg National Archives, Plateau du Saint-Esprit, Luxembourg), Diekirch > Mariages 1843-1890 Décès 1797-1824 > image 1153 of 1493. 1811 Death Record No. 13, at the age of 76 years (middle of right page). (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-267-12052-50867-46?cc=1709358&wc=M9M6-2ND:n1913802954 : accessed 11 Apr 2013).
[22] Ibid., Diekirch > Naissances 1879-1890 Mariages 1796-1842 > image 1077 of 1492. 1821 Marriage Record No. 22. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:S3HY-DYH3-1TK?cc=1709358&wc=9RY4-W38%3A129628901%2C130301801 : accessed 6 January 2017).
[23] Ibid., Diekirch > Naissances 1879-1890 Mariages 1796-1842 > image 1093 of 1492. 1822 Marriage Record No. 2. (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-267-11618-97291-62?cc=1709358&wc=9RY4-W38:129628901,130301801 : accessed 21 April 2010).
[24] Ibid., Diekirch > Mariages 1843-1890 Décès 1797-1824 > image 1487 of 1493. 1824 Death Record No. 32. (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-267-12052-49769-12?cc=1709358&wc=M9M6-2ND:n1913802954 : accessed 04 Apr 2013).
[25] Ibid., Diekirch > Décès 1825-1890 > image 2 of 1358. 1825 Death Record No. 3, lower left hand corner. Age 92 years at time of death. (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-267-12147-160630-60?cc=1709358&wc=M9M6-2NH:n538876208 : accessed 11 April 2013).
[26] Ibid., Diekirch > Décès 1825-1890 > image 174 of 1358. 1835 Death Record No. 29. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:S3HY-6XYW-4W4?cc=1709358&wc=9RYC-2NL%3A129628901%2C129628902 : accessed 23 December 2016).

© 2017, copyright Cathy Meder-Dempsey. All rights reserved.

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Old Photographs Saved From Trash Can ~ #84 Unknown Couple abt. 1894 (Part II)

unkcoupleUnknown Couple abt. 1894
Photo type: Cabinet Card
Card size: 4 1/4″ x 6 1/2″
Card color: cream
Card edges: plain cut, rounded corners
Border: single thin line
Front imprint: artistic gold print
Back imprint: none
Photographer: O. H. Talbott of South Side Square, Girard, Kansas
Scan: auto adjusted

After publishing last week’s post, several of my readers left comments which led to the necessity to re-think my post and write an update.

The Identity of the Man in the Photograph

My cousin Joe was the first person to comment on my post last week.

As my Mother would say “I swanee” that looks like Quincy Royalty as a young adult. Referring to the portrait taken in Kansas as well. His hair being parted on the other side might be an image reversal, but it sure looks like him.

Joe had me comparing the photo of young John Quincy Royalty (1866-1918) and checking his timeline. The photo on the left is a flipped closeup of John as Joe thought one of the two images may have been a reversed image.

royaltyquincyyoungadultunkcouple

Side by side, do they resemble each other? The identity meter on PicTriev, will compare two faces and show one of four results: from the same person, nearly from the same person, quite look-alike, and from different persons. The comparison of the above two pictures brought back from different person.

Using the similarity meter on PicTriev, I compared the above two pictures and got 78% similarity. This is more or less the same results I obtained using PicMonkey’s fade tool to compare the two overlapping photos. This was not as easy as it appears as the angle to the camera was not the same in the two photos. The positions of the mouth, nose, eyes and hairline are close matches.

mergedmen
The light looking eyes of the couple in the photo made me wonder if the soft tones were showing the true appearance of the couple. Quincy’s eyes appear much darker. If there was an image reversal, it would more likely be the couple photo as Quincy has his part on the same side when photographed in Kansas and in New Mexico.

The Identity of the Woman in the Photograph

Last week I wondered if the woman may have been the same person as the young girl on the left in this photo. The similarity meter showed 42% resemblance. Vera Marie Badertscher of Ancestors in Aprons explained this better than I could.

ireneolivecropped
Irene [surname unknown] (left) and Olive Royalty

I don’t see the resemblance to Irene. Although we can only see one ear in the younger lady, it sticks out slightly, and the woman in the top photo has small, flat-to-the-head ears. The mouth of the younger girl doesn’t look wide enough, either.

Vera brought up some good points about the younger girl and the woman not resembling each other. She also wrote:

I was really struck by what a sweet-looking young man that is. Worth tracking down. Is there a history of that county of Kansas in the late 1800’s-early 1900’s? The young man looks younger than the woman to me. She could almost be his mother.

As mentioned above, Joe thought the man may be John Quincy Royalty. He was a schoolteacher in Kansas before 1900 and there is no known marriage for him. His mother died about 1874 and his stepmother died in 1892 at the age of 62 so Vera’s theory of a mother and her son wouldn’t work.

If not mother–older sister?

Quincy had three sisters who were living around this time. Tillie, Florence, and Olive. The three were married by 1892. Could one of them have traveled to Kansas and had her photo taken with him? Could the photograph have been taken earlier? I used the similarity meter on PicTriev to compare the young woman with Quincy’s sisters.

The similarity meter on PicTriev came up with a 93% match on the young woman and Tillie and same person for the identity. The photo of Tillie (bottom) was taken about 1895. Are they the same woman?

womansmalltilliesmallJust for fun, I compared the unknown man and the unknown woman. They have an 86% resemblance according to this tool. This is even higher than the resemblance between the unknown man and Quincy. The resemblance of the woman with Florence was 66% and with Olive was 69%.

One last thought, is the brooch worn by Tillie above the same as the one worn by the unknown woman on the left? I got out both of my magnifying glasses and had a closer look. They are not the same. The unknown woman’s brooch looks almost like letters and Tillie’s is a bit larger.

magnifyingglassAre the unknown man and woman, brother and sister? Could they be John Quincy and Mathilda J. “Tillie” ROYALTY?

A Little More Help

Luanne Castle of The Family Kalamazoo made some interesting comments about the man’s collar or lack of collar.

So interesting that he wears no collar in that first pic! Would it be because he couldn’t afford a new collar and his old one was ruined or lost or something?

I thought it was more of a trend to not wear the collar.

Hmm, maybe .. . . But I know it was hard for men to get collars sometimes. They always had to budget for them.

Comments like these make me want to learn more about vintage photography and fashion of the times. Luanne has a wonderful collection of old photographs and postcards on her blog. I need to take another (closer) look at hers and mine. You see things differently when you become more interested in learning about them.

bestwishescathy1

More about this collection, how it came to be in my possession,
and links to previous posts in the series can be found here.

Please contact me!
Are you related to a person mentioned in this post? Send an email to
openingdoorsinbrickwalls @ pt.lu or message me on my Facebook page
Opening Doors in Brick Walls.

© 2017, copyright Cathy Meder-Dempsey. All rights reserved.

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2016 A Year in Review and What’s Coming in 2017

I love numbers! Once upon a time, I wanted to be a math teacher and worked as a credit analyst for a few years before becoming a stay at home Mom. I still get to play with them, in genealogy and when analyzing the stats on my blog.

Total Views

Exactly 20,500 visitors came to my blog during 2016. Total views on were 37,046 compared to 27,673 in 2015. The increase was about the same as from 2014 to 2015. If all goes well I will be celebrating 100,000 total views since I began blogging by mid-2017.

Viewers came from 98 countries compared to 84 in 2015. Below are the top 10 countries.

2016mapviewsMy top 10 posts during the year

  1. 6 AncestryDNA Notes for Easier Comparison (I reached my all-time high of 1,198 views in one day on 3 October 2016 when this was posted)
  2. How I Use and Manage AncestryDNA Notes
  3. How to Find Your 18th Century Immigrant’s Signature
  4. Slave Name Roll Project: RELEASING Amy, Addison, Henry and his Enslaved Family
  5. James SIMS (1754-1845) Pioneer of Nicholas County, West Virginia (originally written in 2002, updated and re-posted in 2013)
  6. Slave Name Roll Project: RELEASING Cato, Sold on Christmas Day 1821
  7. Henry RUPE’s Estate and his Widow Catherine’s Last Days
  8. 52 Ancestors: #47 Johnny CASH’s 1C5R – Kesiah LIVELY (from 2014, this posts gets lots of hits due to my famous cousin)
  9. Where I Found the Land Records of my RUPE Ancestors in Maryland
  10. Here We Go Dancing ’round the Hill

I don’t know if I should be surprised or not with the success of my two top posts. Writing posts on DNA, a subject I have only started learning about, was not planned. I haven’t done the test but have been administering my brother’s DNA results for the past seven months. There is so much I need to learn about DNA and how it will help in my genealogy research. I’d like to be able to write at least one post in 2017 about a great discovery made through DNA. Don’t we all?

The success of my posts for the Slave Name Roll Project helped me to continue searching for more names to write about each month and this will be continued in 2017.

The Old Photographs Saved From Trash Can series will soon be coming to an end. Fifty posts were written in 2016 from #37 to #84 with a couple being done in two parts. Each week I learned more about vintage photography and fashion of the era. I think this shows in the latest posts I’ve written. Before completing the series I may re-visit some of the earlier photographs which did not include descriptions.

Followers

200followersDuring the last few days of 2016, my WordPress followers went over 200. At the end of the year, I had 203 WordPress followers (compared to 126 in 2015) and 77  email followers (compared to 45 in 2015).

Top 5 Referrers

The top five referrers were Facebook, search engines, RootsWeb, Tangled Roots and Trees, and the WordPress Reader. #1 Facebook is not surprising as I use it to promote my blog. #3 RootsWeb reflects how often people view my GEDCOM file and then visit my blog. #4 is Schalene Jennings Dagutis’ blog. Without her, we would not have the Slave Name Roll Project. I get a lot of traffic from her blog since she mentioned my blog in her introduction to the project.

Search terms

Not all search engines reveal search terms due to privacy, however, it is still interesting to see what may have brought people to my blog. Many search terms are places and ancestral names.

What’s Coming in 2017?

I began blogging in January 2014 when I joined Amy Johnson Crow‘s challenge 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks. In 2015 I did the 2015 Edition and by the end of the year, I had written about my children’s ancestors from their grandparents to 4th great-grandparents as well as 1/4 of the 5th great-grandparents. During 2017 I am going to do a NEW SEASON of the challenge, working on the rest of their 5th great-grandparents and posting on Fridays instead of Mondays.

Once the Old Photographs series has been put to bed, I plan to get back to doing the heirloom posts, Tuesday’s Child’s Family Heirlooms.

Happy New Year to all my readers!

Very special thanks to Amy Cohen of Brotmanblog: A Family Journey for being my most active commenter for the past two years.

Thank you to all my readers and followers for making 2016 such a great year! Wishing you success in your genealogy and blogging, joy and happiness in your lives. Happy New Year 2017!

bestwishescathy1© 2017, copyright Cathy Meder-Dempsey. All rights reserved.

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Old Photographs Saved From Trash Can ~ #84 Unknown Couple abt. 1894

This photograph of an unidentified couple measures 6 1/2″ x 4 1/4″. The rich soft tones of the image are marred by a stain on the right side of the picture. At first, I thought a top layer had been scratched off of the photo. The original shows this is actually a piece of paper stuck to the picture. Very likely another photograph stuck to this one when the water damage happened.

unkcoupleoriginalscanThe front includes the photographer’s name and location in golden artistic print common around 1882-1900. The rounded corner and single line border dates this cabinet card to the 1889–1896 period. The photo was glued to a light cream colored heavy card stock and there is no writing or printing on the back.

The collar of the man’s shirt is a low band without an actual collar. His tie has a large knot and is tucked to the side as was the style in the late 19th century. His hair is cut short and neat.

The woman’s dress has a high neckline with lace, leg-of-mutton sleeves, and a wide cape-like collar bordered with black venitian lace similar to that around the neck. A pin is attached to the middle of the high neck of her blouse. Her face is framed in tiny ringlets instead of bangs while the rest of her hair appears to be put up in a bun at the back of her head.

unkcouple
Auto adjusted.

O. H. Talbott who had his business in Girard, Kansas, worked as a photographer from 1894 (or perhaps earlier) until just before 1910. No information was found for a photographer of this name. To place his occupation in Girard during a certain time period I had to draw up a short biographical sketch from information found in census records and his children’s records.

  • Othniel Henry Talbott was born in 1853 in Indiana.
  • In 1860 he was in the household of Lorenzo Dow Talbott and Elizabeth Allen, likely their oldest child, in Greencastle Ward 5, Putnam County, Indiana.
  • Sometime after 1862 and before 1866 the family moved to Iowa. In 1870 they were living in Yellow Springs, Des Moines County, Iowa.
  • In 1880 Othniel was 26 years old, single, living with his parents in Mediapolis, Des Moines County, and working as a blacksmith.
  • In 1885 when the Iowa state census was taken, he still working as a blacksmith and living in his parents’ household.
  • A change in profession and residence took place during the nine years period between 1885 and 1894.
  • Othniel married Genelia Richie about 1892 and their first child, a son, was born in January 1893 in Fairbury, Jefferson County, Nebraska.
  • In January 1894, O.H. Talbott was running advertisements in The Girard Press for his photography business.
  • In August 1894 O.H. Talbott went to Muskogee in the Indian Territory while his wife and child visited in Paola, Linn County, Kansas per a snippet in The Girard Press of August 23, 1894.
  • He must not have remained long as in 1895 they were in Paola and his parents and one of his brothers living in his household. Othniel was working as a photographer per the 1895 census.
  • In November 1897, when their 2nd son was born, the couple was still living in Paola.
  • In 1900 they were in Eldorado Springs, Cedar County, Missouri, where Othniel was working as a photographer.
  • A third son was born in September 1904 in Eldorado Springs where Othniel H. Talbott applied for a patent on 5 June 1908 for a photographic-plate holder.
  • In 1910 they were back in Potosi in Linn County, Kansas, where he was working his own mortgaged farm.
  • The 1915 state census showed Othniel, a farmer, and his wife with their two youngest sons in Potosi.
  • By 1920 the couple and their youngest son moved to Gates, Campbell County, Wyoming where land was acquired and farmed. He was still farming in 1930.
  • Othniel died in 1938 at the age of 85 and was buried in Basin. He had likely retired from farming and moved there between 1930 and his death in 1938.
  • In 1940 his widow was living in Basin, Big Horn County, Wyoming, with their son youngest son, daughter-in-law, and granddaughter.
  • His wife who was 19 years younger, died in 1954 and was buried beside him.

Since this sketch points to O.H. Talbott doing business in Girard, Kansas, in January 1894 and until August of the same year, I wonder if his business in the town may not have gotten off to a good start. Paola is 73 miles north of Girard and I do not believe Othniel would have commuted to work. It is more than likely his business in Girard was short lived and this photograph may be one of very few, if any, which survives.

youngoliveThere is another photograph in this collection which was taken in Girard at Bell’s Studio in the early 1880s. It was featured in Old Photographs Saved From Trash Can ~ #18 Olive ROYALTY 1871-1949 and shows a young Olive (right) and another girl who was only identified as Irene (left). How Olive came to be in Girard to have her portrait taken with Irene is unknown. Could Olive’s friend Irene be a younger version of this young woman with the man? When comparing the two photographs the difference in the color of the eyes stands out. Could the soft tones of the photo taken by Talbott cause the young woman’s eyes to appear lighter? Can a resemblance be found between the young woman and Irene?

bestwishescathy1

More about this collection, how it came to be in my possession,
and links to previous posts in the series can be found here.

Please contact me!
Are you related to a person mentioned in this post? Send an email to
openingdoorsinbrickwalls @ pt.lu or message me on my Facebook page
Opening Doors in Brick Walls.

© 2016, copyright Cathy Meder-Dempsey. All rights reserved.

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Slave Name Roll Project: RELEASING Cato, Sold on Christmas Day 1821

On Christmas Day, one hundred and ninety-five years ago, Sophia and her child as well as a boy named Cato were sold in estate sales in Nicholas County, (West) Virginia.

William Hamilton (1795-1821) died about a month after his sister Jane. His inventory and sale were recorded at the same time as Jane’s which were shared last month in the post releasing Sophia and her child.

William Hamilton owned a man named Cato as seen in the Inventory & Appraisal of his personal estate:

williamhamiltoninventory500
Citation: “West Virginia Will Books, 1756-1971,” database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-1-18231-21772-76?cc=1909099 : accessed 20 January 2016), Nicholas > Will book, v. 001 1820-1899 > image 18 of 158; county courthouses, West Virginia.

William Hamilton
Inventory & Appraisal
(in margin)

We the Subscribers agreeable to an an order of the
Worshipfull the County Court of Nicholas County,
the November term 1821 of Said Court being first
Duly Sworn have proceed to appraise the personal
estate of William Hamilton Dec’d as produced
to us by Robert Kelly & John Mc. Hamilton the
administrators on said Estate to wit, on the
18th day of December 1821
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . $ – Cts
one Negro man named Cato . . . . . 400 – 00
Watch & Chain . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .20 – 00
one pair of Saddle Bags . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 – 00
one horse . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 60 – 00
one Bed & furniture . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17 – 00
one Book History of America . . . . . . . .  – 75
one Sword & Belt . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12 – 00
tow appletts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16 – 00
one pair of spears . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . – 75
one Saddle . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12 – 00
two Books . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 – 50
Razor Box & Razor . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 – 00

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Samuel Neil
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . John Groves
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Nathaniel Foster
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . John Fitzwater
. . . . . . . . . . . . Sworn to before me Edward Rion
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . R. Kelly . . . . . . . . . .adminst
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . J. Mc. Hamilton . . adminst.

At the time of the sale of the estate which took place on Christmas Day in 1821, Cato was described as a boy and sold to William Hamilton’s brother-in-law and partner Robert Kelly:

williamhamiltonestatesale500
Citation: “West Virginia Will Books, 1756-1971,” database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-1-18231-21768-88?cc=1909099 : accessed 20 January 2016), Nicholas > Will book, v. 001 1820-1899 > image 29 of 158; county courthouses, West Virginia.

W. Hamilton . . . .An account of the Sale of the Estate of William Hamilton Dec’s on
account of sale . . . . . . .the 25th of December 1821 to wit . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . $
Robert Hamilton . . . . 1 Saddle of the appraisement . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .12 – 00
. . . . . ” . . . . . . . . . . . . . .History of America . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  – 75
Robert Kelly . . . . . . . . .one negro Boy named Cato . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 505 – 00
. . . . . ” . . . . . . . . . . . . . .one Bed & furniture, the head & Layings Excepted . . 15 – 00
. . . . . “. . . . . . . . . . . . . . Two Books . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1 – 75
Miss Mary A. Hamilton . . one Horse . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .65 – 00
Edwar Rion Guardian . . 1 Watch : . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .22 – 00
of David Hamilton
Robert Kelly . . . . . . . . . 1 Pair Saddle Bags by appr. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 -00
. . . . . ” . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Appaulett. . . . . . . . .do. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .8 – 00
. . . . . ” . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 pr.  Spears. . . . . . . . .do. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . – 75
John Hamilton . . . . . . . 1 Sword & Belt . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .12 – 00
. . . . . ” . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Epauten . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8 – 00
                                                    R. Kelly
                                                    J. Mc. Hamilton administrators

Jane Laverty Hamilton (1793-1821) and William Hamilton (1795-1821) were two children of John Hamilton (1748-1818) and Rebekah Laverty (1765-1811). In 1820 their older married brother Robert Hamilton had three slaves in his household, two males under 14 years of age and one male 45 years or older. There were several white adults in the household but since Jane had a female slave she was probably not in this household. Robert was the only Hamilton on the 1820 census. One or more of his unmarried brothers, perhaps William, may have been in this household.

Jane and William’s older sister Margaret was married to Robert Kelly who had five slaves in his household, one male under 14 years of age and four females between 14 and 25 years of age. As in Robert Hamilton’s household, there were several white adults in Robert Kelly’s. It is more than likely that Jane was in this household as it also included a female enslaved person who may have been Sophia who was released in last month’s post.

William may have been in either household as both included male slaves under the age of 14 years. As Cato was seen as a man in the inventory and then as a boy when he was sold, he could have been nearly 14 in 1820. It is more than likely that William and Cato were in the household of Robert Kelly as the brothers-in-law were partners in the firm Kelly & Hamilton. The inventory and appraisal of the estate of the firm Kelly & Hamilton followed the inventory and appraisal of the estate of William Hamilton and did not include any slaves. As seen above in the sale of the estate, Robert Kelly became the slave holder of Cato.

bestwishescathy1

True's statementFollowing my three part series on the slaves of my 5th grand-father James Sims during Black History Month in February 2015 I made a commitment to write a post on a monthly basis until I’ve RELEASED all of the names of slaves owned by my ancestors or owned by persons I’ve researched who were relatives or neighbors of my ancestors. These posts are part of the Slave Name Roll Project which can be found on Schalene Jennings Dagutis’ blog Tangled Roots and Trees

© 2016, copyright Cathy Meder-Dempsey. All rights reserved.

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Old Photographs Saved From Trash Can ~ #83 William F. HOLT Family of Brookport, Illinois

While doing these posts I’ve opened several doors in Joe’s brick walls. Joe is my 4th cousin once removed through my 4th great-grandparents Landon S. GOWING and Sally CRISP of Amherst and Nelson County, Virginia.

In the beginning, I was only concentrating on getting the identified photos posted with a little family history. Along the way, I’ve been able to identify some of the unknowns.

Although I’ve learned about old photographs and the fashion of the period, I’m still a beginner and nowhere near possessing the expertise others have when working with vintage photography. This proficiency is lacking when it comes to the photo I am featuring today.

I’ve been avoiding doing this one as it was labeled as an unknown family and I don’t know how to classify it.

wfholtfamilyThe original is 4 1/3 by 5 1/2 inches including a border of about 1/2 an inch. It is unique and not similar in format to any of the other photos in the collection. It has been mounted onto a piece of glass. The image is facing the glass like a photo in a picture frame. The glass is larger than the photo and a green border has been painted on the back side where the glass overlaps the photo. The brush strokes can be seen along the edge of the back of the photo which is gray with very light writing on it.

wfholtfamilybackAt first glance, I did not see there was writing on it, it is that faint. I tried holding it at an angle by a window (natural light), using a lighted magnifier, and taking a picture of it. I was able to make out some letters and two words. W. F. Holt and Brookport.

HOLT is one of the surnames which has been mentioned a few times in this series. Thelma HOLT was the wife (they later divorced) of Samuel Royalty “Roy” LILLIE and the mother of Lynn Vance LILLIE. Thelma’s parents were from Brookport, Massac County, Illinois.

Her parents were William F. HOLT (1871-1934) and Edith S. WYMER (1874-1948). They had a daughter Lula M. HOLT (1895-1963) and a son Leonard Herman HOLT (1897-1947), both born before Thelma whose birthday was 30 June 1901. This fits perfectly with the family group in this picture. A man and a woman, a young girl about 6 or 7 years old, a young boy about 4 years old, and a baby.

While researching this photograph I learned that wicker chairs first appeared in the 1890s as studio props and continued to be used for several decades. In this photograph, the father is sitting on what looks like a wicker chair or stool. His wife is also sitting and holding a baby. The two children are standing.

I suspect the photo was taken in late 1901. The baby on the mother’s lap is wearing what looks like a voluminous christening gown which completely hides her size and makes it difficult to estimate her age.

The young girl, standing behind her parents, wears a center part. Her hair is French braided from the crown to the nape of the neck and then hangs in two regular braids down her back. The mother’s hair is combed back from her face and likely pinned up in a bun at the nape. Both mother and daughter are wearing similar blouses with large collars adorned with a gathered ruffle which reaches to the shoulder seam, perhaps made by the mother from the same pattern. The mother is wearing a dark floor-length skirt. One of her pointed shoe tips is peeking out from under the skirt.

The young boy has a side part like his father and is wearing a darling suit, similar to the sailor suits children were wearing at the time. The large lapels are embroidered as are the cuffs of the jacket and a row of buttons is on both sides. He is wearing knee pants, knee-high socks, and boots laced up above the ankle. Around his neck, he has a floppy bow tie while his father, who is wearing a three-piece suit without leg cuffs, does not have any kind of tie. The lapels of the man’s jacket have shiny inserts. A watch chain hangs from the vest buttons and is likely tucked into the vest pocket hidden by his jacket. A tiny light circular adornment is on the collar of his vest. His white shirt is buttoned up to the pointed collar. The toe caps of his lace up boots are dull, likely from daily use.

I believe the identification on the back fits the William F. HOLT family of Brookport, Illinois, and the fashion fits for late 1901. One question remains. Does this method of mounting a photo on a piece of glass and adding a painted border have a name or could it have been a homemade preservation attempt by a person who formerly owned the photograph?

bestwishescathy1

More about this collection, how it came to be in my possession,
and links to previous posts in the series can be found here.

Please contact me!
Are you related to a person mentioned in this post? Send an email to
openingdoorsinbrickwalls @ pt.lu or message me on my Facebook page
Opening Doors in Brick Walls.

© 2016, copyright Cathy Meder-Dempsey. All rights reserved.

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A New Look for Opening Doors in Brick Walls

I’ve wanted to try a new theme for my blog for quite some time. I’ve seen a few themes I like but not enough to go through the “work” of switching. Too many format changes to the content would have to be made to make the theme work well for my blog.

I have a wiz-ee-wig 😉 obsession when writing my posts in draft mode. I know I should just write until I’m finished and then format. I’m always using the Preview button to see what the post looks like and to read through it searching for errors or possible re-writes.

From Twenty Ten to Twenty Sixteen

The year is nearly over and I decided to try the WordPress default theme for 2016: Twenty Sixteen. It took me several hours to customize the widgets, background, menus, headers, and fonts. I didn’t do it in one sitting. I put it aside several times, never closing the dashboard. There may be an easier way but I wanted to keep my old theme, Twenty Ten, active until I was satisfied with the new theme.

I became quite frustrated with the logo feature. Here I have what I think is a great logo – mainly because I made it all by myself – and it wasn’t showing up in the upper corner during the customization. In the end, after I had made all the changes to the menu and widgets, I went back to the headers and logo section, tried again, and it finally worked. The new theme went live last Wednesday and on Sunday I tweaked the size of the title to the dimensions available in the image field. Instead of using a picture I chose to make an image with the name of my blog in the fonts I used for my logo and hid the default title.

Some things which will have to be fixed

I haven’t gone through each post but I have found two issues that I will have to deal with.

sources
I’m not liking the way my sources look compared to the rest of the post.

My sources (endnotes) no longer appear in small print. They are now in a larger size bold print. This will have to be fixed as most of my posts from last year, when I did the Luxembourgish families, have between 20-50 items in the endnotes. This does not look “neat and clean” like the rest of the blog.

sourcefixed
This is how I’m thinking of re-doing all the sources.

I’ve fiddled around with solutions and have decided to switch the formatting to Paragraph (same as the rest of content) and then change the font color to a middle gray to set it off from the rest of the post.

sketch
Notice the numbering is too close to the side of the box.

Another difference I will have to get used to is the numbering in the Twenty Sixteen theme hangs the numbers or bullets to the left and places the text flush with the other content. I was used to the numbers/bullets being flush to the text and the rest being indented to the right. My boxes with the Genealogy Sketch have this numbering and the numbers are nearly attached to the left side of the box. I’ll be fixing these over the next few weeks.

Some things I love about this new theme

When quoting the old theme used indentation of the italicized text, This new theme still used italics, although the font size is a tiny bit larger. The text is flush with the rest of the content and sets it off with a thick vertical line to the left.

quote
I like the way the quoted material is set apart with the thick vertical line.

The featured image in a post now shows up at the top of the post. I have a few ideas of how I am going to use this to my advantage. For example, a recurring image for posts in a series or using my collection of photographs of doors (like the one at the top of this post) or photos of signs of the towns an ancestor lived in. I think this may work really well since I am not using a photo at the top of my blog.

I’m ready for the New Year and my blog is ready for another year. If you are a blogger, have you recently updated or changed your blog’s theme? To all of my readers, I’d love to hear what you think of the new look.

bestwishescathy1© 2016, copyright Cathy Meder-Dempsey. All rights reserved.

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Old Photographs Saved From Trash Can ~ #82 A Young Florence ROYALTY?

I nearly missed this photograph, it is so tiny. It was first scanned by my cousin Joe along with an envelope in which I found it. Stamp size, it measures 1 1/8 by 1 3/8 inches.

unkportraityounggirlenvThe young girl looks to be in her early teens. Her hair is tied back at the nape of her neck with a large bow, likely out of the same material as her dress. Her eyes are very light colored, possibly blue. Her dress or blouse may be white or a light color and has a high collar. The extra fabric on the top part of the bodice appears to have vertical pleats sewn down and then left open in the bosom area. The sleeves are a bit puffy in the upper arms; the lower arms are not seen in the photo. Were they bishop sleeves or gigot sleeves?

unknownblueeyedgirlwithbow
Non-identified photograph of a young girl in her teens.

Could this photograph have been taken in the middle or late 1880s?

ca-1910ruthjoannalillie
Ruth Joanna LILLIE ca. 1909.

The dress looks very much like the one Ruth Joanna LILLIE was wearing in this framed portrait. Was the original dress saved and made to fit Ruth or is she wearing a reproduction of the dress? Ruth was the oldest daughter of Florence ROYALTY and Isaac Spencer LILLIE.

Could the young woman be Florence ROYALTY (1868-1946)? We’ve seen photographs of Florence at different ages but none in her teens.

mrin21898-royaltyflorence6yrs
Florence at age 5 or 6 years with light colored hair.
isaac-and-florence-lillie-rooney-collection
Florence, with her husband Ike, is in her late thirties and her hair has become darker.

Another possibility would be Florence’s sister Mathilda J. “Tillie” ROYALTY (1859-1939) who also had light colored eyes. Their sister Olive ROYALTY had dark colored eyes which eliminate her. Tillie was 9 years older than Florence which means the photograph would have to have been taken earlier, perhaps in the late 1870s or early 1880s.

tomtilliefannietom+tillietillieolder

 

 

 

Larger images of these photographs may be viewed in the post on Tillie.

Am I correct in dating this photograph in the middle to late 1880s? Does this young girl resemble Florence ROYALTY as a little girl and as a married woman? Or could she be Florence’s sister Tillie? Or will she remain unidentified?

bestwishescathy1

More about this collection, how it came to be in my possession,
and links to previous posts in the series can be found here.

Please contact me!
Are you related to a person mentioned in this post? Send an email to
openingdoorsinbrickwalls @ pt.lu or message me on my Facebook page
Opening Doors in Brick Walls.

© 2016, copyright Cathy Meder-Dempsey. All rights reserved.