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.

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.