Friday, June 22, 2012

Pre-K Grad

     It is the last day of school for my little Gregory.  He 'graduated' pre-k yesterday and will be starting kindergarten in September.  Although I am happy that my son is a big boy now and moving up in the world, it is still a bittersweet day because I will miss his pre-k teacher.
     If all of Gregory's future teachers are as wonderful as Mrs. Allen then I have no doubts that my son will be a great success.
     At 4 1/2 and 5 years old, my son learned the names of all the planets, the continents, and the oceans.  He learned the life cycles of a frog, a butterfly, a ladybug and a plant.  He learned about the water cycle, the weather, dinosaurs, and more.  He learned about money and even know that the Lincoln Memorial is on the back of the penny.
     Is there anything that Mrs. Allen didn't teach the children?

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

My Followers are Leaving?

     This is not a real blog post, just a filler while I'm writing the post about my grandmother in the 1920's.  I wish I could update my blog everyday but I usually write it at work and wait til I get home to look up dates and facts then edit, edit, edit.
     Last night I let my five year old sleep in the big bed with us instead of his own bed because he was going to watch a tv show at 8pm.  He watched his daddy play a video game in the living room instead so I had the bed and tv all to myself.  He'll watch his show tonight.
     I was walking back into the bedroom all ready to go to sleep when my son asked me if i did my blog.  I told him that I had to do a little research and that  I was watching tv instead.  He replied "well, you better go do your blog now before you lose followers."

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

* Rocky Road *

     My Austrian ancestor was never born but he was 58 years old when he died.

     I wrote about my 2nd great-grandfather, Stephen Duper in a post entitled 'Austrian Ancestor' dated 2/10/2012.  I didn't have too much information about this particular grandfather.  All I knew was that he was from Austria, arrived in the United States in 1888 and died in 1931.
     I received Stephen Duper's death certificate excited that I would find out his birth date and cause of death.  I know that the information found on a death certificate is only as accurate as the person supplying the information.  I wasn't sure if I'd see his parents names because I didn't know who the informant would be.  I hoped their names would be there so I could try to continue my research in Austria.
     Stephen Duper died at Roosevelt Hospital om Manhattan, NY o July 16, 1931.  So, when was he born?  I still don't know.  The informant for this death certificate was my 2nd great-grandmother, Teresa.  You would think that she would know and supply such a vital piece of information as her husband's date of birth unless whoever was filling it out didn't think it was important.  He was 58 years old at the time of death so the year of birth would have been 1873.  I don't know if or how I'll find the actual date.  His parents were Stephen Duper and Mary Zaytes.  I'm guessing they arrived in the United States with their son if my math is correct.  The death certificate states that he was living in this country for 44 years which would make his arrival year 1887 minus his year of birth, makes him 14 years old when he arrived.  I still need to check the passenger lists.
     My grandmother's cousin had written in a letter that her grandfather was a dynamite foreman and helped build Storm King Highway in Orange County, NY.  She told me that he died from the rock dust in his lungs.  Well, now that I have a copy of the death certificate I can see the cause of death.  According to the certificate, Stephen Duper was admitted to Roosevelt Hospital on June 20, 1931.  Dr Tilley diagnosed my 2nd great-grandfather with 'pleurisey-suppurative' and it also stated "(aspiration June 16?)".  I am not familiar with these medical terms that I'm finding on death certificates.

  Pleurisy - inflammation of the lining of lungs and chest which causes chest pain when  breathing in or coughing
  Suppurative - the formation or discharge of pus
  Aspiration - to draw in or out using a sucking motion
    This medical term has two meanings, depending on how it is used.
   ~Aspiration can mean breathing in a foreign object (such as sucking food into airway)
   ~the term can also refer to a medical procedure that removes harmful or misplaced substances from an area of the body. These substances can be air, body fluids, or bone fragments.

     Stephen Duper's death certificate has his occupation listed as 'Rock Driller' in the industry of 'Construction' lasting 37 years.  The man was only 58 when he died so he's been in this line of work since the age of 21.  I guess MaMas cousin was correct.

   The rock dust in his lungs led to the rocky road to death.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

No Birthdays for Dorothy

     Little Dorothy Davis never had a 4th birthday party in the year 1927.  There were no balloons, no cake, no laughter, no fun.
     I had written about Dorothy in March of last year in a post entitled "Little Girl".  This child was my maternal grandmother, Eleanor's younger sister.  I never even knew MaMa had a sister until I dragged my mother with me to visit the Davis family plot in the Poughkeepsie Rural Cemetery in Poughkeepsie, NY.  The nice lady in the cemetery's office gave me a map of the cemetery showing the path to get to my family.  She also gave me a copy of a card showing that plot with information such as plot owner, date and amount of purchase, and a list of names and dates of interment.  My mother and I looked at the list and saw Dorothy's name with her age printed as (3) and the date Jan 1927.
     I was obsessed with Dorothy.  I never knew she existed but once I found out about her I had to know more.  How did this little girl die at the tender age of 3?  My grandmother's cousin had told me about Dorothy's tragic death.  She was too close to the kerosene heater causing her clothes to catch fire.  Her mother was deaf and never heard the screams, didn't realize until it was too late.  Dorothy didn't survive the burns.  I called the cemetery to get the exact date of death since it wasn't listed on the paper they gave me.  I was told that Dorothy died on January 28, 1927 in Brooklyn, NY and was buried on January 31.  I asked for her birth date and was told by the cemetery's office that they didn't have it.  So, other than the date of death and burial, all I have is "age 3."  I'm guessing she was born in 1924, maybe 1923.  Well, I can get her date of birth from her death certificate.  no problem...

     I finally ordered Dorothy's death certificate.  It was easy enough.  I had her date  and place of death as well as her parents' names.  I ordered it online and was happy and surprised that it arrived so quickly.
     I glanced at the certificate and looked immediately for the date of birth.  What??  no birth date listed?  When was this child born?  All this certificate shows is 'Age 3' which is what I already knew.
     Dorothy J. Davis, daughter of Samuel George Davis and Josephine A. Duper died on January 28, 1927 at Kingston Avenue Hospital in Brooklyn, New York.  Dr Auerbach determined that the cause of death was "Extensive burns of back - accidental at home."  I already knew that she didn't survive the burns but what I did not know and found on this death certificate was "This case was at Kingston Ave Hospital because of positive culture for Diphtheria."
           Diphtheria?   hmmmm...
      I had heard the word diphtheria but was unfamiliar with this disease and its symptoms.  I looked this up and found that there are two types of Diphtheria.  Respiratory Diphtheria involves the nose, throat and tonsils.  Cutaneous Diphtheria involves the skin.  I wonder if the burns from the 'kerosene' heater contributed to the diphtheria that Dorothy tested positive for?
     The informant on this death certificate was Dorothy's father.  I'm guessing her mother was in no condition to be providing information after giving birth to her youngest son, William the day after Dorothy's death.
     Back to Dorothy's birthday...   unless she just turned 3 in January, that poor child never celebrated a birthday in 1927.  I'm going to try ordering a birth certificate for her with a year of birth as 1923 or 1924.  The death certificate states that she resided in the City of New York her whole life.   her whole short life

                                               ♥ Dorothy ♥

** I write out my blog posts on paper before entering them in the computer.  This post was written and ready to go when I saw that New York had state censuses available on for the years 1892, 1915, and 1925.  I looked up my grandmother, Eleanor in the 1925 census.  She was living with her grandmother and uncles in Brooklyn, NY at the time of the 1930 census and in 1925 I found her in Poughkeepsie, NY with her parents and younger siblings.  One of the siblings listed was 'Dorothy'.  Yes, little Dorothy is actually in a census.  She is listed as 2 years old.  Was she born in 1923?  I'm hoping my answer in her birth certificate arrives soon.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

MaMa's Birthday

♥♥ Happy Birthday in Heaven to my beautiful grandmother Eleanor Frances Davis ♥♥