Of all the funeral cards, that circulate out there, I wonder how many ever find their way back to the families of origin. A simple funeral card is the summation of a life lived.
Enjoy the discovery process.

Friday, April 30, 2010

Follow Friday - Lost Family Treasures by Leslie Ann Ballou

Lost Family Treasures by Leslie Ann Ballou is a delightful genealogy blog.  Each post leads from one treasure to another in Ballou’s unique style.  She transports you back in time as you visit her collection of artifacts and mementos.  It truly is a treasure hunt from Ramona’s Flea Market to Pink Antique Store.  Or maybe a visit to Great Grandma Piggott’s treasure box while on the way to the Smedley’s jewelry box filled with costume jewelry.  The Piggott treasure box is filled with birth announcements, special programs and holiday cards galore.  On the business and educational side of life, Leslie shares items like estate lists, ledgers, wills, school report cards and cabinet photographs.  Interspersed among all the finds are beautiful photos of handmade quilts and hand-woven rugs.  Leslie Ann Ballou is a must visit in the genealogy blog world as she ties everything beautifully together in her creative scrapbook way.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Treasure Chest Thursday - Genevieve Akard's Letters

Every genealogist can recall the catalyst that sparked their interest in genealogy.  For Treasure Chest Thursday, I wish to pay homage to the significant elder in the Akard family that inspired me to learn more about our family history.  In 1972, Genevieve Perry Akard, a military wife of my father’s cousin, was passionately diligent in writing and telephoning all the people with the surname Akard.  Her inquiry letter arrived and for our family it was big event because something other than a bill notice had been placed in our mailbox.  I can still vividly recall, standing on the front porch, as I read her letter aloud to my father and sister.  Since mother had died, Dad designated it my responsibility to respond to her letter.
Throughout the years, I would correspond frequently with Genevieve and always welcomed her insight and family stories.  As Genevieve began to age and it came time for her to move in with her children, she once again thought of me.  Her son, David Akard, brought me a paper bag full of Genevieve’s old genealogy correspondence.  Each letter is a treasure and so many riddles solved before I even knew to form the question.  Although, Genevieve is no longer with us—she is in spirit.  She will always be my genealogy spark. ~

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Guest - Marla Hathhorn

Marla Hathhorn has been so gracious to share two funeral cards with the Funeral Cards and Genealogy blog.  She agreed to appear as a guest and has provided wonderful information about her funeral card collection.

"The funeral cards of  William Redmond 1860-1930 and William Redmond 1825-1910  belonged to my grandmother Lavina Redmond Israel, who lived in her own home until her death at the age of 102. The two William Redmonds were her father (see prior post) and grandfather. My grandmother had given the cards to me many years ago as she knew I was very interested in the family history.
Even though I have been researching both my and my husband's family trees for over 25 years, these are the only two funeral cards I have found, so they are very special to me.

William Redmond was born in Ireland in 1825. His parents John & Mary Redmond brought their 5 children to America in May 1847 fleeing the Irish Potato Famine. William married and raised five children, including his son William Andrew Redmond. The elder William's life took him from Ireland to Oklahoma where he died, while his son William lived his entire life in a ten mile area around Wathena, Kansas.

Thank you ~ Marla Hathhorn"

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Treasure Chest Thursday

Yesterday was a special treat.  My husband surprised me with a short road trip to nearby antique stores.  The fields are popping with wildflowers.  Bluebonnets, Indian Paintbrush, Black-eyed Susan and many other varieties lined the roadway.  Describing the natural beauty escapes my writing hand.  We made our way through the winding back roads to Bastrop, Texas.  Once there, we visited the downtown historical district.  One could almost imagine the days of horse and buggy with shoppers abound.  One old antique shop nestled at the end of Main street was a sweet tuck away place.  When I entered the store, my purpose was to search for long forgotten funeral cards.  Towards the back of the store was a small table with a glass top and nestled underneath was this striking photograph of a beautiful young woman.  Her cabinet card image just reached out to be rescued.  Now, my treasure, she remains unnamed.  Funeral cards will have to wait another day.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

William Redmond, Sr. 1860 - 1930

William Redmond Sr.
The funeral card of William Redmond, Sr. has been submitted by his great granddaughter, Marla Hathhorn.  In her recent email she states: "William Redmond was born in St. Joseph, Missouri, and is buried at Belmont Cemetery in Wathena, Kansas.  Please contact me if you have any questions." Click on Marla Hathhorn's name to send her an email.
Many thanks to her for sending her funeral card our way.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Preparing for a Presentation

Today at Funeral Cards and Genealogy, I am preparing for a May presentation at the Red River Genealogical Society in Clarksville, Texas.  The topic is "How to Search for Your Living Relatives."  The subject is a captivating subject and one that has been brought to light by television shows like "The Locator" and "Who Do You Think You Are?"
A thought that occurred to me is how many relatives we have and are not aware of their relationship to us.  The old saying, “You should be nice to everyone—they may be related” applies here.
On my genealogy journey, I have been so blessed to find family members near and far that have enhanced my knowledge of the many family trees I have researched. 
In May, when I present at the society meeting, I will be among distant cousins and friends.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Tombstone Tuesday - Naomi Perdue Bryant Renfro

The Honeysuckle Tombstone
On the back of this photograph in my grandmother's simple handwriting is "Mother's grave, Age 71 years."  As a child, I can recall my grandmother with tears in her eyes, holding this photograph saying, "This is my mother's grave and there isn't even a tombstone to mark where she is buried."  Little did I know that someday, thirty years later, I would be on a quest to find my great grandmother, Naomi Renfro's grave site, and how important the photo would be in locating her final resting place.
To honor Naomi in death, the family planted a honeysuckle bush at the head of her grave.  In 1930, that is what poor mill workers could afford in lieu of a tombstone.
See the tombstone (upper left of center).  With the assistance of the Sherman, Texas Library staff, I was able to determine the exact location of Naomi Renfro's grave. To this day, the honeysuckle bush still blooms.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Follow Friday

A genealogy blog worthy of following is Caddo-My Home Town, News and views from Caddo, Oklahoma-the small town with a big heart.  Author, Mary Maurer established her blog in October 2005 with three categories, Books, Food and Drink, and my favorite subject, History-Genealogy.
Mary Maurer is the mother of three grown children and proud Nana of three grandchildren.  She is a kindergarten teacher, writer, obsessive genealogist and amateur historian.  Her works can be found in publications such as Birds and Blooms, The Dallas Morning News, Texas Gardener, The Writer and Parent Life.
Next on my wish list is a copy of her book, Caddo, Oklahoma - Presevering on the Prairie.
Many thanks to her for bringing the past to the present for the descendants of Caddo, Oklahoma.  At the stroke of her pen are interesting historical stories to not be forgotten.  A highly recommended read is author Mary Maurer.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

John Ondler 1869 - 1902

Originally uploaded by mrwaterslide

Above is displayed another funeral card from the collection of John Van Noate at Flickr.
It was exciting to discover a funeral card with a 1902 identified photograph of the deceased, John Wesley Ondler.  The memorial verse is very poignant and much can be attributed to the his wife, Elsie and young daughter, Fern--the family he left behind.
Politically active, J. W. Ondler, at one time served as the deputy auditor for Linn County, Iowa.  Cedar Rapids Evening Gazette of March 2, 1899 provides a glimpse into the life of John W. Ondler:
"...Mr. Ondler resigned in order to return to Troy Mills where he is the proprietor of a large and prosperous business.  He found that the loss that his interests suffered through his interests was to great to permit him to remain in the service of the county.  Mr. Ondler was very popular and made many friends and Auditor Jackson was very loath to part with him."
The cause of his death remains a mystery, as news that I can currently access revealed thirteen days before his death: "J.W. Ondler is under the doctor's care.  Raymond Rome is clerking in the store during his absence."  His obituary remains to be discovered.
The good news is four family trees at Ancestry.com have linked to John Wesley Ondler in the 1880 Census at Spring  Grove Township, Linn, Iowa; Roll T9_351, FHC film 1254351, page 372.1, E.D. 276, Image 0746.  It is good to know the family trees may soon display Mr. Ondler's funeral card.
Note:  The author wishes to acknowledge John Van Noate and his generous contribution to Funeral Cards and Genealogy.

Monday, April 5, 2010

January 9, 1889, Reading, Pennsylvania

John Van Noate aka Mr. Waterslide, a collector of old photographs, has a huge selection of cabinet cards on Flickr.  For the next few days, I will research some of his cards that are of the funeral genre.  He has labeled this card as a possible factory or mill fire.  I am not convinced that the building description is correct.  Also, his title, Nineteen Dead, Reading, Pennsylvania may possibly be misleading.
My first attempts at researching this funeral card is the card publishing company was located in Reading, Pennsylvania but the fire incident did not occur there.  The closest hit on NewspaperARCHIVE.com is an news article titled, Nineteen Dead in Fire in The Daily Times dated January 8, 1901.  The story details a fire starting in the asylum section of the building located in Rochester, New York and quickly spreading and destroying the building completely.
This funeral card merits further investigation.
Are there any historians out there familiar with this story?

UPDATE: I posed a similar story on Facebook F.C. & G. and Darlene Bittaker came back with an interesting response of her findings:
"'C. A. Saylor, who operated the New York Gallery at 411 North Sixth Street, Reading , assembled this rare composite of the VICTIMS OF THE GRIMSHAW MILL DISASTER--in record time--to sell as a memento, while interest remained intense. Notice that no attempt has been made at individual identification...and 19 folks are pictured despite the fact the death toll numbered 17.' That I would think surely dates this card to near the date of occurrence. Jan. 9, 1889."
Interestingly, her find leads to another replica of the Commemorative Card on the Destruction of the Mill.  The reverse side of the funeral card is shown there, providing additional clues that Darlene Bittaker discovered.   Interestingly, Darlene provides another link to GenDisasters and a posting about this same story by Stu Beitler, Reading, PA Devastating Tornado, January 1889.  His story provides a list of the dead.  
Everyone be sure to check the comments that researcher, Teresa Martin Klaiber, offered.  She was on the same trail as Darlene.  There are some great history sleuths out there.
From this posting, I hope the reader will see that the author is not always correct in her first observation and attempt to solve a riddle.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Catherina M. Thede

Originally uploaded by mrwaterslide

Shown as Katie Thede--Catherina M. Thede of Crystal, Tama, Iowa at age 2, born July 1897 in Iowa in the Twelfth Census of the United States, 1900, Crystal, Tama, Iowa, Roll T623_460, page 3A, Enumeration District 134. In 1900, she is the oldest child to Peter and Annie M. Thede. Also shown in the census is her younger sibling Elsie, age 4 months. By the 1910 census, Catherina (Katie) Thede is not with her family as revealed on the funeral card.
The 8,926 entries of the family tree, Roots, Branches, Twigs and Leaves by Kathlin4091 on Ancestry.com has the Thede family listed with Catherina missing.
The creator of the family tree will be notified to include Catherina with her family.

Harriet Gale

Flickr "bumanns" has a nice photograph of Harriet Gale's funeral card. Shows she died January 31, 1906 at age 85 years. From appearances, this is from a family historian's collection.

Funeral Card Friday

At the April 2, 2010, Funeral Card Friday event on Facebook, Michelle Mounts asked, “What exactly is Funeral Card Friday?”  The answer is on the first Friday of every month...genealogists are encouraged to check their memorabilia stash for any one funeral card of choice and share a photo or link to the image at the event. If they wish, they may choose to write a short description. All categories of funeral cards are accepted.
Our first event had a nice turn out with the following folks participating:
Tracy McCracken St. Claire provided two wonderful cards.  One image for Alexander Leeper's funeral card, his obituary and ephemera, plus added as an added bonus she provided the link to the Leeper Family Bible.  Her second image was Margaret Ostrander’s funeral card.  She brought to the group’s attention that the card has a 1908 copyright by Wendell & Co. in Leipsic, Ohio.  She posed a great question as to whether the descendant is generally near the publisher location.  So far, on F.C. & G., we are discovering that the deceased are often times within a 100 mile proximity of the publishers.
Dr. Bill Smith of Dr. Bill Tells Ancestor Stories shared a description and photograph of Glenn Bolger’s funeral card.
A short story and photograph of Charles E. Tinker’s funeral card was shared by Pam Warren of Granny's Genealogy.
In response to adding the photo of her ancestor, Odina Neveu, Janine LaFleur Penfield stated, “A genealogist's dream: birthplace and date, using her maiden name along with some cultural immersion. Her photo was on the cover that I now use on her person page in my genealogy software.”
Sheri Bush of Twig Talk had one of prettiest funeral cards.  The funeral card for Gladys Alexander was very vibrant. 
Miriam Robbins Midkiff of Ancestories: The Stories of My Ancestors not only provides a photograph of George Edward Benjamin (a.k.a. Jarig Egbert Binnes) DeVries’s funeral card but details how the card was passed down through the family and provides a citation.  Many thanks to Miriam for acknowledging Funeral Card Friday.
Tami Glatz of Relatively Curious about Genealogy presented the funeral card of Eliza Thompson with her story. Tami was a great commentator to the group event.
Pop Pop was the nickname for George Henry Hughes the paternal grandfather of Linda Hughes Hiser at Flipside.  Her love of her grandfather beams with her telling his story along with a photograph of his card.
If you are Facebook member, check out the Funeral Card Friday event, for all the comments shared with the attendees. Remember to mark your calendar for May 7th for the next Funeral Card Friday.  See you there.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Ancestor Approved

Yesterday I was presented the "Ancestors Approved" award by Lori of the Genealogy and Me Blog. As a recipient of this award I’m supposed to list ten things I have learned about any of my ancestors that has surprised, humbled, or enlightened me and pass along the award to ten other bloggers who I feel are doing their ancestors proud.
To continue to search for the parents of George Bright Frazier (1854-1921).
To continue to search for my mother's first cousin, Beatrice Lindley.
To continue to search for the burial place of Hanora Harrington Walcott.
To share my genealogy findings with my family.
The family photographs in the possession of Carolyn Lucas Hall.
Discovering that my father's first cousin, Velma Williams Patterson murdered her two daughters.
My gr grandfather, William Newton Renfro had fathered 23 children.
To find that Tom Lindley was actually George Thomas Lindley.
The Adair family died within the same month as the Patterson murder trial.
John Schwartz was orphaned by age 10.

Well-deserving of the "Ancestor Approved Award" are:
Branching Out Through The Years by hummer
Gen Wish List by Tina Lyons
High Definition Genealogy by Thomas MacEntee
Graveyard Rabbit of Wichita County, Texas by Robin Inge
Dr. Bill Tells Ancestor Stories by Dr. Bill Smith
Greta's Genealogy Bog by Greta Koehl
The Educated Genealogist by Sheri Fenley
Cyndi's List by Cyndi Howells
Cemetery Explorers
The Robertson-Kubberness Connection by Gwen Kubberness

Thursday, April 1, 2010

52 Weeks to Better Genealogy - Challenge #13 - Cyndi's List

Cyndi Howells was among the first to emerge into the genealogy computer world.  Her brilliant idea of creating a list of genealogy resources has been a godsend to many researchers.  Time and time again, when stumped with a brick wall, I have returned to Cyndi's List for that much needed connection or tidbit necessary to move forward.
As part of the 52 Weeks to Better Genealogy, I wanted to see how I could promote Funeral Cards and Genealogy -- a relative new genealogy blog on Cyndi's List.  If you are emerging into the blog world and would like consideration of a listing.  The first step is to read carefully Cyndi's instructions to Submit a New Genealogy Link.  In a relative short turn around, after following the guidelines, Cyndi had posted Funeral Cards and Genealogy to the March 2010 What's New on Cyndi's List.  Check us out under March 27, 2010.
Many thanks to Cyndi for providing such a valuable resource to family historians, genealogists, librarians and researchers.  And now, bloggers!

Collecting Funeral Cards

The past couple of weeks has been spent more in preparation and gathering funeral cards to present to the followers of Funeral Cards and Genealogy.  Soon to arrive in the mailbox are six funeral cards.  The cards of the following are: Reuben R. Aldrich; Mrs. Caroline Aldrich; Mrs. Edward Croxall; Sarah E. Kehler; Lillie Puckett and Nettie F. Warner.  Yes, Mrs. Edward Croxall has been reviewed recently, however there will be new development presented from the eBay seller.
Also, there are several March eBay issued funeral cards pending a write up and presentation. 
Tomorrow is a big day for F. C. & G. -- we will have our first Friday of the month, Funeral Card Friday.  Several have signed up to post a photo and short description of their funeral card.  For those of you in the blog world, you are welcomed to attend. Click on Find Us on Facebook.
Who knew a person could have this much genealogy fun with funeral cards?

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Mrs. Edward Croxall

While researching funeral cards from time of death to present day, I find that the location where the card for sale is a very important clue.  In March 2010, eBay seller, "debbideals" promotes the funeral card, Mrs. Edward Crosell (sic).  The auction information indicates the card is located at Evansville, Indiana.  This hint allows the researcher to focus on one of three possible general search returns of Edward Croxall.  July 1870, we find Edward P. Croxall, wife Josephine and children; Blanche S. and Florence D. Croxall residing at New Albany, Floyd, Indiana. The following census of June 1880, Edward Croxall, his wife, Josephine and children; Blanche, Florence, Julius, James are residing at New Albany, Floyd County, Indiana.
Valienteagle's "Jones Family Tree" and CHuxton's "CCroston Master 07 2009 Family Tree" have Edward Palmer Croxall as son of James Croxall and Aglae Dubocq.  Neither family tree has followed Edward Croxall's descendants. It may be time to see if the researchers are interested.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Facebook First Week

Ventured into the first week of dual presentation to ponder whether the content should be the same on both the blog and facebook.  Currently, I am thinking that I may use my blog for my own personal research of a funeral card or historically memorabilia.  And promote the facebook version as a place to enlist new ideas from the followers there.  All remains to be seen as to whether the two forums will blend or stand separate.
A short note to thank all you followers out there.  I am enjoying every minute of my tiny world of publication.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

High-Definition Genealogy & Eureka

Anyone new to the genealogy world and is wanting to learn about networking, Thomas MacEntee delivers.  His ability to deliver instruction with humor allows him to stand out in the emerging crowd of online genealogists.
Today, I stumbled across his new website, High Definition Genealogy Family History in Focus.  If you have a "how do I do this" question.  Thomas MacEntee delivers again and again. 
Thanks to his instruction and inspiration, I have decided to take my budding idea of Funeral Cards and Genealogy to Facebook. 
Thomas would be proud that I watched his video instruction and had 6 followers before I could get the full group loaded on Facebook.  Hugs and kisses to Thomas.

Tombstone Tuesday - Orand Hitt

Infant of David Smith (D.S.) & Mattie S. Hitt
Born June 13, 1901
Died June 15, 1901
Sleep on in thy beauty.
Thou sweet angel child.

Note: Orand Hitt was the tenth child born to his parents. Burial at Union Cemetery, Gustine, Comanche, Texas.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Surname Saturday - Akard

Growing up, I was aware that I had an unusual surname.  Indeed, there are very few of us today in the United States with the last name spelled as Akard.
First stop, at Ancestry.com, defines Akard as "Americanized spelling of German Eckhardt."  Secondly, researching Eckhardt, I learn Eckhardt is derived from Eckert.  At Eckert, I am able to locate a surname meaning published in the Dictionary of Family Names, Oxford Press.
"German: from a Germanic personal name composed of the elements agi ‘edge’, ‘point’ + hard ‘hardy’, ‘brave’, ‘strong’."
To date, our family lineage begins with Jacob Akard.  The story passed down through the generations is that Jacob, a young lad, stowed away on a ship bound for America from Germany.  His origin in Germany remains elusive. Jacob Akard was to serve as a mason apprentice in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. Later, he fought in the Revolutionary War.  His sons migrated into Carter County, Virginia and later the families dispersed to Arizona, California, Illinois, Missouri, New Mexico, Tennessee and Texas.  Some families pronounce their name with a strong emphasis on Ākard; others pronounce the surname as (Ăck)ard. Same clan, different sound.
The jury is still out on whether, I am related to the William Christopher Columbus Akard, whom the street in Dallas is named.  His family migrated from Missouri to Texas and my family migrated from Tennessee to Texas. I do see a physical resemblance in the families.  Time for a DNA test to confirm my theories.
"Apt as not," if you meet an Akard, they are related to my American family. 

Edwin Cline and Emeline Holdridge Marriage Certificate

Good friends, Keri M. Carroll and Skip Murray sent this marriage certificate image by Antique Quest, they found on eBay and encouraged me to research the family.  The image was heavily mildewed, muddy and undecipherable--thank goodness the photo correction process yielded the following:
"This is to Certify That Edwin Cline of Smithville, Chenango Co. in the State of New York and Emeline M. Holdridge of McDonough, Chenango Co. in the State of New York were by me joined together in Holy Matrimony on the Eighth day of March in the Year of our Lord One Thousand Eight Hundred and Seventy. J.C. Lawson"
Only a few letters of the surname Holdridge were readable. I was able to conclude her maiden name by relying on the 1870 Census, McDonough, Chenango County and searching for Emeline, females born 1849.  She is located as an 11 year old child residing with parents, Ansel Chauncey Holdridge and his wife Roxy L. (maiden name unknown). 
By 1880, Edwin and Emeline Cline had two sons, George E. Cline, Fred H. Cline and another undetermined child. The family was now residing in the next county to the east, Cortland County, New York.
All of the mentioned family members are laid to rest at the McGraw Cemetery, Cortland County, New York (see Find-a-grave).

Friday, March 19, 2010

Follow Friday

The Genealogy Junkie on a Mission blog is a book and movie all rolled into one.  The author, Teresa, a relative newcomer to the Genealogy Blog World has a story to tell.  Her saga begins when she stumbles across that her husband's surname is not Whitt, nor Hamilton; as previously told.  She discovers, Paul Elton Aspey, former Fort Worth, Texas police officer to be her father-in-law.  As she follows the research trail, she finds that Paul E. Aspey aka Thomas J. Hamilton had changed his name, then skipped the Michigan state line to avoid paying child support, only to meet, the woman who shoots and paralyzes him for going fishing in his dress clothes on a Saturday night.  The first in a series of short stories of the deep dark secrets in her relative's past.
As details unfold it appears to be the work of fiction, but is shockingly true.
If you want to learn excellent people locating skills and read a budding novel at the same time, this is the blog to follow.
UPDATE: The blog has been removed until further notice.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Funeral Sympathy Card

Canadian eBayer has a lot of 4 black embossed sympathy cards.  I chose this one to embellish with Photoshop.  This image lends to more of a reddish tint than the actual true black matte color on eBay.
The part about having a blog, I can share what I find interesting in the macabre world of death and funeral.  Amazing that art plays such a significant role in our grieving lives.

John Irvin 1840 - 1886

Thus far, in its simplicity, this card is one of the most strikingly beautiful funeral cards.
4pebs of eBay describes the card:
"In Memory of John Irvin.  Died Aug. 28, 1886, Aged 46 years.
 Below that it reads;  Loving friends, weep not for me; I long to be at rest.  How happy, happy I shall be When pillowed on my Saviour's breast.
'Twas sad to see thee breathe thy last, But Jesus lovingly said,  "come!" Now thy sufferings all are past, And thy sweet spirit rests at home.
Oh! the hope, the hope is sweet, That we soon in Heaven may meet; There we all shall happy be- Rest from pain and sorrow free.
On the back is printed Memorial Publishing Co. Chambersburg, PA."
Hopefully exposure at the Funeral Cards blog, as well as eBay will provide some historical treasure for a family researcher.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Wordless Wednesday

Lewis Joseph Schwartz's Blacksmith Shop
Caddo, Oklahoma

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Tombstone Tuesday - Jeremiah Harrington

Jeremiah Harrington
August 8, 1850 - June 30, 1902
Fairview Cemetery
Stillwater, Payne County, Oklahoma

Frank S. Streeter

Careful preservation of our ephemera collections is a must.  Just as the ink is fading on this funeral card, so are the memories of F. S. Streeter.  From the photograph it is obvious that the gold transfer lettering has all but worn away.  If the card is tilted at an angle to the light, the embossed wording appears as “F. S. Streeter, died April 28, 1924, Age 67 years.”  The card was originally published by H. F. Wendell of Leipate, Ohio.
With his name and possible geographical location, my research began at Ancestry.com with the State of Ohio Death Index and discovered his death certificate is filed in Volume 4429 and certificate no. 21011, date of death.  Further research at FamilySearch records, I was able to locate an image of his death certificate.  Frank S. Streeter was born to father, John Streeter at Berlin, Ohio.  About 1897, he married Amanda McCullough.  To their union was born a daughter, Fern Streeter.  After their divorce, Amanda took her life by arsenic poisoning on October 21, 1920.  Four years later, Frank died at the Charity hospital in Cleveland, Ohio.
Many times records disagree.  The death certificate and funeral card conflict regarding Mr. Streeter’s age at the time of his death.  The funeral reveals his age as 67, on the other hand, his death certificate indicates he was 59 years, 11 months and 28 days.  However, his age on the 1910 census aligns with the funeral card.
To date, this funeral card is in my possession.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Jacob Buchholtz Revisited

At last, the obituary of Jacob Buchholtz has arrived.  Many thanks to Cheryl for sending my way.  The obituary was published in the Escanaba Morning Press, Friday Morning, June 29, 1917.  I had a hunch that Mr. Buchholtz was a man of importance and his well-written obituary depicts a respected man of the community.

Death Takes J. Buchholts
City's Pioneer and Prominent Business Man Answered Summons Last Night—Lived Here Over A Half A Century
Jacob Buchholtz, one of Escanaba's first settlers and for many years one of the city's most prominent business men, passed away last night at St. Francis hospital after an illness of several weeks from a complication of diseases caused by advanced years.
Mr. Buchholtz had been in failing health since early in the spring and for the past five weeks his condition had been serious.  Slowly the aged patient lost strength and last night shortly after 8 o'clock he passed peacefully away, with the members of his family at his bedside.
The body was removed from the hospital last night to the undertaking rooms of J. A. Allo and today will be taken to the home of Henry Abenstein, Ogden avenue, where it will remain until the time of the funeral.
Funeral services will be conducted at St. Joseph's church at 9 o'clock on Monday morning.  Rev. Father Buchholtz of Marquette, son of the deceased, will officiate at the mass, assisted by Rev. Dr. Barth, of St. Patrick's church as deacon and Rev. Father Corcoran of Iron Mountain, as sub-deacon.  The sermon will be delivered by Dr. Barth.
Mr. Buchholtz was born in the Grand Duchey of Luxemburg; March 4, 1840.  He came to the United States early in life and to Delta county in 1863.  When Mr. Buchholtz came to this district not even a village was yet established on what is now the site of the city of Escanaba.  He traveled from Green Bay to Flat Rock by sailing vessel and was employed for a time in the mill at Flat Rock.  He was one of the first men to settle in Escanaba when the village was platted and was engaged in the building of the Northwestern road from this city to Negaunee.  After the completion of the road he engaged in business in this city and was continuously in business here until 15 years ago when he retired from active business life.
Mr. Buchholtz was known to a host of people not only in the city of Escanaba but throughout this section of the peninsula, where he had lived continuously for over a half a century.  He was held in the highest esteem by all who knew him and his death Escanaba has lost a substantial, public spirited citizen, whose death will be sincerely mourned by a great many people.
Mr. Buchholtz is survived by three sons, Rev. Father Buchholtz of Marquette; William Buchholtz of Akron, Ohio, and John Buchholtz, of Green Bay.  In addition he is survived by two brothers, Matt Buchholtz of this city and Nicholas Buchholtz now in Luxemburg.  His wife and two daughters preceded him in death.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Belgium Funeral Card

Incredible artistic detail is to be found on this funeral card. For a moment, consider the image and lettering.  The card inspires me to want to learn of the printing techniques of this era. Despite the age of the card, it is in remarkable condition.  I was drawn to the Dutch-English translation of the card's message: “Our Lord’s Cross.  I want to rest under your shade.” My research skills are sorely lacking when it comes to Belgium genealogy.  Nevertheless, this card represents the life of  Maria Theresia Josepha Dierckx (1784-1867). This would be a treasured find for a family historian.
Photographs are by colantiques on eBay.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Tombstone Tuesday - Patrick Harrington

Patrick Harrington
10 August 1814 - 15 August 1899
Hanora Lyons Harrington
wife of 
Patrick Harrington
12 November 1822 - 15 June 1897
Fairview Cemetery, Stillwater, Oklahoma
Note: Tombstone has been repaired.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Monday Madness - Albert Gibson Adair

Albert Gibson Adair, my great-grandfather's oldest brother, was known for his madness.
His great grandson, Mr. Larry Don Adair and I met innocently enough at Harwell Elementary school, where I was teaching.  Officer Adair, a Lubbock policeman, had visited the school to present a drug prevention seminar to the students.  First, I spotted his badge, and then noticed he markedly resembled my cousin, Jim Adair.  "Mr. Adair, your surname is the same as my grandmother's maiden name."  One conversation led to another, as we realized we were distantly related.  He agreed to bring his genealogy material the following week and we would compare our records.
The following week arrived; I had my few pages of information and much to my surprise, in walks Officer Adair carrying an arm load of Adair Family History.  A humbling event was to unfold.
As we began to sort through the material and make the family connection—he stated his great-grandfather, A. G. Adair, was insane.  He died in an insane asylum in San Antonio.  It is rumored that he became enraged and took an axe to one of his brothers.  At that moment, I paused took a deep breath and said ... "It was my great-grandfather, Doctor Sharp Adair, that A. G. Adair struck in the head with an axe."  We have photographs of D.S. Adair with the axe indention clearly visible on his head.  To this day, I wonder how my great grandfather survived such an injury.
The Texas Death Certificate was obtained from FamilySearch.org Pilot Program.  Many thanks to the wonderful volunteers out there.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Sell It Now

After three weeks into the blog world, I picked up the telephone and rang Chris at Sell It Now.  His latest sell item on eBay included a grouping of seven funeral cards for sale.  The standard advertisement depicts a photograph of seven cards pleasingly arranged, however, missing was the most important part to a genealogist--the name on the card and any other life events identified.
From the background telephone ringing, I deducted that Chris was a busy man and I would most likely receive a quick response to my questions.  Not so, Chris took an interest in the Funeral Cards blog and  retrieved the cards from a box nearby and provided the following information.
Card 1:  William Herbert Seccombe, died 28 Dec 1899; at time of death, he was 6 years, 10 months, 22 days.  A child that may otherwise be lost to a family tree, if not for this documentation.
Card 2:  Catherine A. Collins with (no death date), age 67 years.  This would take a lot of detective work to determine family tree placement.
Card 3:  James Davidson, died 5 May 1888, age 67 years.
Card 4:  John Nelson, died 26 Apr 1888, no age listed.
Card 5:  Jane Cottrell, died 12 Nov 1892, age 72.  She will most likely appear in a future article.
Card 6:  Not identified
Card 7:  At Rest - photograph only, published by P. A. Miller at Arkansas City, Kansas.
It is good to know that retailers are curious about the ephemera they sell.
If I won the lottery, I would create a huge collection of cards to return to family historians.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Frank Asa McKnight

Many times, while researching those that walked in the past, I attempt to envision the texture of the fabric of their time and place.  One voice to whisper in the wind is the McKnight family.  Imagine Niagara County, New York for a moment, pre-Civil war and late in the evening, a knock at your door. When you call out to who is there, the answer is, "A friend with a friend."  The door opens slightly and your father steps outside.  Muffled voices, footsteps tap gently off the porch landing.  Father, Andrew Jackson McKnight, has taken his friend to the apple cellar to rest briefly for the night.  Only three miles from Canada, tonight the friends spend their last night on United States soil--they, the slaves, are freedom bound.  It is their last stop on the "Underground Railroad."
In his youth, Franklin Asa McKnight, may have known of his father's intentions to help his fellow man.  In my imagination, he is keenly aware.
To most, Frank Asa McKnight is just another funeral card - but his card represents just how close and tangibly near his era of life is to our own lives.  According to Evelyn Jo Oldham's Oldham Family Tree, Frank Asa McKnight was born 7 Oct 1853 at Newfane, Niagara County, New York to parents Andrew J. and Ineta McKnight.  14 March 1915, he died.  His wife, Orcelia Eliza Perry McKnight lived until 1951.  For more years than their marriage, Orcelia kept the funeral card of her dear husband neatly tucked away in her dresser.  Today, they share a plot in Corwin cemetery located on the northeast corner of Lockport-Olcott Road and Hatter Road. Gone but not forgotten.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Wordless Wednesday

Ann Harlan Cameron Adair
21 Jul 1865 - 26 Dec 1953

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Tombstone Tuesday - Martha H. Chancellor

Union Cemetery,
Gustine, Comanche County, Texas
Martha E. Chancellor,
Wife of George H. Chancellor.
Born Jan. 26, 1861; Died Jun 14, 1911.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Jacob Buchholtz 1840 - 1917

This card reminds me of a commercial, I once saw.  A woman justifies a purchase by saying, “It spoke to me.”  My earliest intentions were to only report on funeral cards located and define a  time and place that an interested family historian could trace an important document.  Herr Jacob Buchholtz’s funeral card became the exception … he spoke to me so I purchased the card.  There maybe a family tree submission of Jacob, however, I was not able to locate such with my arm-chair genealogy research tactics. Below are a few initial details about him.

Jacob Buchholtz was born 4 Mar 1840 in Luxembourg.  By 1864, at the age of 24, Jacob and possibly his brother Peter had made their way to the United States.  Two years later, he meets his lovely, Katherina and marries her.   Katherina was also of Luxembourg and came to the United States at the age of 8.  By 1870, Jacob is residing in Escanaba, Michigan and listed as a laborer with his young wife and family, Anna and Willie.  In the following census, Jacob Buchholtz tells the census enumerator that he is “keeping a saloon.”  His family has grown with the addition of Hannah and Jacob Jr.
Delta County Genealogical Society of Michigan has a treasure trove of genealogy material and many specific details of Jacob's life emerge from service of the historians of his county.  Jacob voted in 1881 and was not yet a citizen of the U.S.  From the 1884, Proceedings of the Council of the City of Escanaba, I learn that his bond to deal liquor had been approved and again later in 1887. On 31 March 1888, he files his declaration of intent, then follows up with his petition for naturalization in July 1909 and becomes a U.S. citizen.
There is so much to explore, so I have requested additional records to learn more about Luxembourg and Delta County, Michigan life events of Mr. Buchholtz.  Stay tuned for Part II.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Frederick Ochs 1810 - 1886

One overlooked feature of Ancestry.com is Member Connect.  It is by far one of the greatest additions to their website.  If you haven’t explored this valuable research tool, I encourage you to do so.  When you locate your family member in the census be sure to check the right margin of the page to see if another family historian has added the individual you are investigating to their family tree.  Many genealogy treasures are to be found this way.
A great read would be Frederick Ochs' will.  If only I could find my way to Fairfield County, Ohio.  His funeral card on eBay by sellers “keithandmargie12” is just short of spectacular. The huge Victorian style card measures 13 ½ x 26 inches enough pressed paper stock to make twelve normal 4 x 6  funeral card size.  At one hundred and twenty-four years later, what does the card size alone say about those left to mourn his death and their attempts to reflect their love and respect for their father for future generations?  The salutation reads, “In fond remembrance of dear Father,” followed by Frederick Ochs died April 27, 1886; age 76 years, 24 days.
The Ochs, Hemphill, Spooner & Hoppock  Family Tree and The Gleich Family Tree had significant dates that somewhat correspond with Frederick Ochs funeral card.  Both of these family tree owners could benefit greatly from the record of his death.  The Ochs tree reflects his date of birth as 3 Apr 1811, the card calculates to 3 Apr 1810.  The Gleich Family Tree has his date of death as 27 Apr 1883; the card reveals 27 Apr 1886.  It is amazing that the card has been preserved possibly longer than his tombstone date carvings.
Wonder which progeny will claim their German ancestor’s of Pleasant, Fairfield, Ohio funeral card?
Update: Mr. Donald Leo Gleich passed away 18 Mar 2009.  He was the noted family historian in his family and was thoroughly enjoyed genealogy.  In his memory, from the Columbus Dispatch, 20 Mar 2009.
Donald Leo Gleich Sr., age 75, passed away Wednesday, March 18, 2009. Donald was employed for 28 years with Westinghouse and 15 years with Mid Ohio Electric. He was the Past President of Buckeye Quarter Midget Racing Association. In retirement he has enjoyed working on his family genealogy. Preceded in death by parents Clarence and Adele Gleich and great-granddaughter Isabella Kathleen Ann Daniel. He is survived by his wife of 25 years, Lillian Gleich; sons, Donald L. (Sandra) Gleich Jr. and Norman Douglas (Gay Alene) Gleich Sr.; daughter, Tina M Gleich (Philip) Myers; step-children, Butch, Sandy, Tina, and Dottie; grandchildren, Patricia, Crystal, Douglas, Katie, and Stacey; five great-grandchildren; brother, Clarence (Norma) Gleich; and sisters, Carol Witt and Margorie (Gary) Sagsetter. The family will receive friends 2-4 and 6-8 p.m. Friday, March 20 at Schoedinger Hilltop Chapel, 3030 W. Broad St., where funeral service will be held 10 a.m. Saturday, March 21. Pastor Wayne Beard officiating. Entombment Green Lawn Mausoleum.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Wordless Wednesday

Hanora Hogan Harrington Walcott

Monday, February 22, 2010

Della Edwards Dyche & her daughter Erma Dyche Kelly

The funeral card of Della Dyche is currently up for bidding on Ebay.  Every name a researcher discovers has its own path to a story.  Please allow me to share a few clues along the way.  A wise approach to locating a person that died before the year 1900, is to start with the known facts.  The adage, "Start with the known and move forward to the unknown," is applicable here.  What are the known facts that the funeral card provides?  The first clues were her name at the time of her death as Della Dyche and the date she died, November 19th, 1898.  Further examination of the funeral card yields valuable information, the poem and importantly from its memorial phrase we learn that she was a wife and mother at the time of her death :
Farewell, husband dear, farewell,
Adien, farwell to thee;
And you, my dear little babe,
Farwell, farwell to you.
Our mother is gone and we are left,
The loss of her to mourn,
But we hope to meet with her,
With Christ before God's throne.

The next clue available is the card is for sale by seller redfish22 of Magnolia, Montgomery, Texas.  At the turn of the century, Dyche is an uncommon name in Texas and the family tended to clustered in Denton County (north of Dallas). 
At Find-a-Grave, the tombstone of Della Dyche was located at the Bellew Cemetery in Denton County, Texas.  Her epitaph reads wife of W. E. Dyche. Next step in the 1900 Census, I traced two different William Dyche individuals but their criteria didn't match.  A second look at Denton County in the census, I was able to locate Edwin Dzche, residing as widowed son-in-law with the Noah Edward's family.  With the Edwards family also resides a granddaughter, Erma Dyche born August 1895.  To connect the Dyche and Edwards family, I looked for a family tree and found The Hyde Sides by Dan Hyde.  Although, later, I find discrepancies in his tree, Mr. Hyde is accurate about the Dyche/Edwards family connections.  From his information, we learn the complete name of our subject, Josephine Idella Delta Edwards, wife of William Edmund Dyche. By 1910, daughter Erma is residing with her uncle Henry Edwards and her father has remarried and moved to Dallam County in the Texas panhandle.
Erma Dyche married Carl Kelley sometime before 1920. Their only child is named Joseph Dyche Kelly.  Erma named her son after her parents, Josephine Della & William Dyche.  The next most sought after document for a genealogist is a death certificate and fortunately the Church of Jesus Christ of the Latter-Day Saints, Family Search Record Search had a free copy that had been indexed by volunteers.  On the death certificate, the informant is her son, Joe Kelly.  Most likely the card has been passed down through Joe Kelly's lineage .  And now, the funeral cards sits on an Ebayer's shelf pending to be sold.  Will it be rescued?
Update: Mr. Dan Hyde to the rescue--he is currently bidding on the funeral card.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Sentimental Sunday - Mom's Card

Rest in Peace. The Lord is my Shepherd. Thirty-nine years have passed since my mother took her last breath.  Although, many days separate me from that moment in time, it remains as vivid as the day of 1 December 1971.  At the age of eighteen and very much self-absorbed in my adolescent life, I said goodbye to my mother.  A most challenging time of my life.  A month prior to her death, stymied by the break up with my first true love, I had limped home from Colorado with a broken heart.  Mom's health was failing and I barely noticed. Thoughts that God was punishing me somehow were entertained.  Sounds a bit dramatic, but Mom always described me as emotional.  As I write this, I weep.
When in need, many loving women have assumed the role of adopted mother and filled those caverns and mountain tops, that only a mature woman can for a younger naive woman.  One in particular stands out, "Momma Sweet" aka Margaret Townsend Allen.  With words of encouragement, lots of laughter and by example she taught me about life's simplicity.  Therefore, I was not punished by the loss of my Mom, but blessed with two mothers in my lifetime.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

The Boswell Family - Revisited

Playing matchmaker of funeral card to family historian had a wonderful and unexpected outcome.  Just one week ago, through an Ancestry email message to Alicia J. Burrie, I wrote:  "I am a fellow genealogist and I happened upon the funeral cards of John Albert Boswell, Mary Rennett Boswell and Emma Boswell. They are currently being auctioned on Ebay.  If you are interested please let me know how it turns out...."
Of the five family tree submitters related to the Boswells contacted, only Alicia J. Burrie responded. Some panache and bravery is needed to reach out and respond to other family historians and non-related researchers.  A critical element in locating long lost documents, stories, photographs and other historical information can be accomplished by the extra effort to collaborate with others.
This morning, Alicia invited me to her family tree to see the photographs in place and in following correspondence, she unexpectedly details a pay-it-forward story that warmed my genealogist heart.
"...Finding and recovering documents and photographs of my ancestors is truly fascinating and fulfilling. When I can add a photo or record to one of my relatives in my family tree, I feel like I just found another piece of the puzzle to where I come from.
Holding that original photo or document is one of the most exciting rewards of my research.
I want to thank you for taking the time to contact me about my family funeral cards and photos on Ebay. They are on their way back to a family member who will cherish them as part of her family history. God Bless..."
Having met Alicia J. Burrie and learning of her generous spirit makes me grateful to be a part of the wonderful genealogy community.
*above photograph of Mary Renetta Webster Boswell*

Friday, February 19, 2010

Sam De Stefano

Into the world, an innocent baby was born 13 September 1909, named Sam De Stefano by his loving Italian parents, Samuele and Roslina De Stefano. A translation of the De Stefano surname means "son of Stephen, crowned or royal." The given name Samuel translate to "heard God; asked of God."
"Mad Sam" left the world known as a once feared Chicago mobster.  On 14 April 1973, at the hands of another, with two shotgun blasts, his life ended. He died violently, as he is noted to have lived and delivered.  After the neighbor discovered his body on the garage floor, he lay in a pool of his own blood exposed to onlookers for hours.  His death was rumored to have been an inside hit and that very few people were reported to have acknowledged his last funeral rites.
With all celebrities, the first place to begin research is the archived newspapers. NewspaperARCHIVE and Chicago Tribune Archives provided great resources for locating historical events surrounding the boisterous, bullhorn toting De Stefano. 
In the Ancestry.com 1910 United States Census, index as Samuel Desteffine, age 7 months. With him are his parents and siblings-- Angelina, James, Mike.  Most likely to an error in indexing and misspelling of the surname, the family was not easily traced in 1920.  However, by the 1930 census, Sam De Stefano appears on line 90, age 21 residing at the Illinois State Penitentiary in Joliet, Illinois. Released and by the age of 24, Sam De Stefano was arrested for a New Lisbon, Wisconsin bank robbery. After he was sentenced 15 to 40 years, The Wisconsin State Journal of October 1, 1933 reports, "He left the courtroom in a rage, shouting, I have seen better jails than Wisconsin ever saw." By 1941, the Journal reports Mr. De Stefano to be "rehabiltated and reformed" and he is released from the Waupan Penitentiary. Rehabilitated, he was not.  In the span from 1941 until his death, he revisits the prison system several more times for numerous reasons, some of which include sugar ration forgery, voting fraudulently, death threats and loan sharking.  For those, that crossed Sam De Stefano, the penalty could easily result in severe torture or death.  The most heinous, the death of a 5 year-old, Bernhard McCluskie, Jr., who died in a West Tavern and apartment fire.
Mr. De Stefano tombstone and brief bio appear on Find-A-Grave.  However, the feature – a place to pay last respects – by leaving a message and flowers has been disabled due to misuse.  In this forum, it is not my place to level judgment but to share a few historical tidbits that have been tucked away.
At last look on Ebay, his funeral card was a whooping $55.00 ten times the average value. Who would have thought there was a market demand for Mafia related funeral memorabilia?  I wonder who purchased this card and why?  My thoughts turned to what kind of flowers would I choose and what message I would write?