Tuesday, April 19, 2011

All Aboard !

     Who doesn't like trains?   the sound of the whistle blowing in the distance...   the chug, chug, chugging along the tracks...   and  "All Aboard!"

     My 4 year old son, Gregory loves trains.  For his 3rd birthday I re-decorated his bedroom.  We said goodbye to Peter Rabbit and Friends and hello to Thomas (the tank engine) and Friends.  He has more trains than he knows what to do with and knows the difference between steam engines and diesels.  We took a family trip to Strasburg,PA in the beautiful Amish country near Lancaster.  We rode on the Strasburg Railroad, slept in a train car at the Red Caboose Motel   http://redcaboosemotel.com/   and even visited the train museum.  I would recommend this trip to any train enthusiast.
     Gregory's grandmother (my mother) also loved trains when she was a child and had her own set.  Gregory's great-grandmother, Eleanor (my maternal grandmother) worked in a token booth selling tokens for the subway (probably in Brooklyn,NY because that's where she lived).  I just called my mother to verify her mother's employment with the subway and she said that she had no idea.  Well, I didn't pull that out of a cloud.  I know I heard someone (my mother or aunt) mention that my grandmother sold tokens so that's what I'll believe.
     My grandmother's uncle (on her mother's side), Stephen Duper worked for the railroad according to the U.S. World War II Army Enlistment Records, 1938-1946; position: semi skilled switchman, railroad.
     My grandmother's grandfather (on her father's side), Daniel J. Davis had a tragic experience with the railroad.  My great-great-grandfather was deaf but knew when the train was approaching by the vibrations he felt on the ground.  On 29 May 1937, Daniel J. Davis, age 77, apparently didn't feel the vibration and obviously never heard the train that struck and killed him.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Dearly Departed...

     Established in 1853 and located in the scenic Hudson Valley on the east bank of the Hudson River in Dutchess County,NY;  Poughkeepsie Rural Cemetery is home to my dearly departed Davis family.
     The Davis family plot was purchased by my maternal great-great-grandfather, Daniel J. Davis on 28 July 1919 for $129. (430 sq ft @ .30 per sq ft).  This information was on a plot card that the lovely lady in the cemetery office gave me a few years ago.  I called the cemetery today because I was wondering how much a plot would cost nowadays.  The woman I spoke to asked me if I knew what section my ancestors were buried in.
     I guess the price depends on the location?  Do you prefer a scenic view of the Hudson River or maybe a spot under a shade tree?  Is the price even higher if it's a shade tree by the river? ?
     I gave the office clerk the section and lot # for the Davis family plot and she looked up the current price.  If I wanted to be a neighbor and purchase a spot by my great-great-grandfather, Daniel Davie I would pay $44. / sq ft and it doesn't even have a view or trees.  I wonder how much they charge if I wanted to spend eternity by the water?

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Don't Step On My Grave !

     The days are getting longer, the weather warmer, it's time for gallivanting through the graveyard.

     My maternal grandmother's grandfather's family (on her father's side) was from Ulster County,NY.  My great-great-great-grandfather, William H. Davis was born 1832 in Milton,NY and his future wife, Emily Martin was born 1836 in the neighboring town of Lloyd.  I don't know when or where they met and married but according to the 1860 census they were living nearby in Marlborough with their three children. Their son, Daniel J. Davis grew up, moved to Ohio and eventually returned to NY. Daniel and family settled in Dutchess County (town of Poughkeepsie) where they lived for the rest of their lives. Daniel's children moved away for a short time but then moved back to Poughkeepsie.  I already have all the names/dates of my ancestors (Daniel & family) who are buried in the Poughkeepsie Rural Cemetery.  My research there is done except for a return visit to take pictures.  One of these days I need to explore the cemeteries in Milton, Lloyd and Marlborough.
     Last Saturday was a pleasant, sunny day.  A perfect day for visiting cemeteries.  Since I had not yet found my ancestors cemeteries in Ulster County, I decided to visit the cemetery of a friend's ancestor.  Kathryn lives in Massachusetts but has ancestors buried in Sylvan Cemetery, a small, quaint cemetery located in Wurtsboro,NY.  I had promised to visit the cemetery and take pictures for her.  I found the Civil War Lieutenant's grave fairly quickly.  Joseph Roesch's headstone has his name and wife Rachel's on one side and the names of...  (their children?) on the other side (of the same stone, I had never seen that before).  There are smaller stones on the ground with just a first name on each (same names that were on the other side of Joseph & Rachel's headstone).  Charles and Addie share a headstone with an infant.  It's so sad to see the tombstone of a child.

     Joseph Roesch's family story is told in Kathryn Smith Lockhard's wonderful book, Forever Lacedhttp://www.woodenshipsironmen.com/ForeverLaced.htm

Monday, April 11, 2011

Beautiful Day, Beautiful People

     Although I had to work today I was greeted by the warm sun when I left at 3pm.  The weather was beautiful and people are beautiful.  I would like to thank Susan who writes 'Nolichucky Roots'  http://nolichuckyroots.blogspot.com/ %20r for nominating my blog for the One Lovely Blog Award. I'm still getting used to blogging and was surprised to see her comment on one of my posts telling me about this award.
     The award was started a little over two years ago at Works of Art by Sara and included the following rules.

  • Add the logo to your blog.
  • Link to the person from whom you received this award
  • Nominate 7 or more blogs
  • Leave a message on their blog, letting them know they are "One Lovely Blog"! 
The following blogs I have chosen to nominate (in no particular order) are:

~ More Than Names     http://morethannames.blogspot.com/
~ Touching Family History   http://wwwtouchingfamilyhistory.blogspot.com/
~ Untangled Family Roots  http://untangledfamilyroots.blogspot.com/
~ Keeper Of The Records  http://keeperoftherecords.blogspot.com/
~ Are You My Cousin?  http://areyoumycousin-lisa.blogspot.com/
~ Family Archaelogist  http://familyarchaeologist.blogspot.com/
~ Threading needles in a haystack: the genealogy journey  http://threadingneedlesinahaystack.blogspot.com/ 

Thanks again Susan  http://nolichuckyroots.blogspot.com/

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Make Love, Not War

Some do...     Some don't...     some do and do and.....

     Some people enjoy wedded bliss so much that they don't wait for the first marriage to end before embarking on another matrimonial adventure.

     Uncle Sammy was a lover, not a fighter.  He was too busy with the ladies to fight for his country.  My bigamist, war deserting great-uncle had a wife named Ruby in NC (and supposedly another).  I have a letter Ruby wrote to her sister-in-law (my maternal grandmother) and she refers to Sammy as her husband.  I spoke to my mother yesterday about some of my latest discoveries and asked her about Uncle Sammy.  She said that she never met him.  I asked if he really was a bigamist and how she knew this.  She replied that MaMa (my grandmother) rarely spoke of her younger brother but did say that he was a bigamist.  My mother then said that he might have had more wives, who knows? ? ?   Well, I definitely know about Ruby.  I can't truly call Uncle Sammy a "bigamist" (or polygamist) without proper documentation.  I asked my mother if her uncle was a deserter and she said that he had gone AWOL.
     My great-uncle Sammy had one older brother and sister and one younger brother and sister, though the younger sister died at an early age.
     I have nothing else to write about Uncle Sammy, he was a man of mystery.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Lost in Lloyd

     I've been focusing on my maternal grandmother's side of the family and now I'll look at her father's side.

     My great-great-great grandmother Emily was born in Lloyd,NY according to the death certificate of her son, Daniel J. Davis.  The informant for Daniel's death certificate was his daughter, Fannie.
     Emily Martin was born in 1836 to a mother and father whose names are currently a mystery to me.  She married William H. Davis (middle initial 'might' be a 'J') of Milton, NY.  According to the 1860 census, she was married with two children and living in Marlborough,NY.  By 1880, she had 9 children and still in Marlborough.  That is 'If' I'm looking at the correct Emily and William Davis but I'm sure I am.  The 1890 census is unavailable due to a fire (what remains is not helpful to me) and beyond that I am lost.
     I just noticed that my maternal grandmother, Eleanor had a great-grandmother named Emily on both her mother and father's side.  Both of these Emilys cannot be found.  I should refer to them as my Elusive Emilys.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

~ Goulash ~

     Today's post is not about food.  Budapest,Hungary is the hometown of Zsa Zsa Gabor and Aunt Mary, a very fine lady with her straight skirt, sweater set and pearls.
     Aunt Mary was married to my maternal great-grandmother Josephine's brother, Steven.  I never met Uncle Steve or if I did I don't remember because I was only 8 months old when he died.  My mother said that Uncle Steve was a grouchy old man.  Judging from the photos I've seen of my great-great uncle, he didn't look like a ray of sunshine.  His lovely wife was always pleasant, always smiling and very friendly.
     I find it interesting that Aunt Mary was born in Hungary and her father-in-law Stephen Duper was from the neighboring country, Austria.

     ~Mary Duper ~    born 12 October 1896 in Budapest, Hungary and died January 1986 in NY
Map of Hungary