Monday, April 30, 2012

Finding Family in 1940

     I'm not losing my mind.  I'm really not.  I know that I read somewhere that my maternal 2nd great-grandmother, Teresa (Devine) Duper had lived in the apartment where she lost her life to fire, for about 40 years.  So, if she died in 1955, subtracting 40 years would have her living there since 1915.  What was I thinking?  Who did I read about living in the same place for 40 years?  I thought it was Teresa but the 1920 census has her living up in Westchester county with her husband and children.  In 1930, Teresa was living at 991 Flushing Avenue in Brooklyn, NY with her two sons and granddaughter.  Her husband Stephen was not listed with them and I don't know where he was living.  The following year, in July of 1931, Stephen died at the age of 58.  The obituary in the Brooklyn Eagle newspaper states that he died at home and the address shown is 938 Flushing Avenue.  Did Stephen not live with his family?  Was the house number changed from the year before?  My mother had told me about the picture of her great-grandmother leaving a building and that the building number is shown in that photo.  That was where she lived (according to my mother).  The address shown is 434.  So I now have three house numbers on Flushing Avenue.  There's 991, 938, and 434.  Did Teresa move?  Were the building numbers changed?
     I searched the 1940 census and didn't find Teresa at any of the addresses that I already had for her.  I finally checked every enumeration that had Flushing Avenue.  I scrolled through page after page, district after district, and my perseverance paid off.  I found my 3nd great-grandmother Teresa Duper still living on Flushing Avenue but the house number is different.  What?  Another address?  Teresa and her youngest son, Gerald are living at 900 Flushing Avenue in Brooklyn, NY.  Gerald is now 29 years old and still single.  Teresa's granddaughter, Eleanor, age 22, who was with her grandmother and uncles in 1930 us with them again in 1940.  I still don't know where Eleanor's parents are.  I haven't found them yet.  Teresa's son, Stephen was living with her in 1930 because he was separated from his wife, Mary.  By 1940, they are back together and living in the Bronx.
     I'm so happy that I found my grandmother, Eleanor in the 1940 census. ♥

Friday, April 27, 2012

~ Indexing ~

     The 1940 U.S. Federal Census can be viewed if you know where the person lived, if you have an address or enumeration district for that year.  If you have no clue where your favorite grandmother lived or where that scandalous cousin lived in 1940 then you'll just have to wait until the indexing is complete so you can search by name.
     I registered with Family Search to index records.  I was on vacation last week and had intended to work on my genealogy and index the census all week.  I had good intentions but didn't follow through.  I had a headache most of the week and was nervous about starting the indexing.  I am not computer savvy and didn't know what to expect.  I finally started indexing last weekend and couldn't believe how easy it was.  I can choose which record I want to index and have been choosing New York in the 1940 census because this is the state I live in and where my family was from.  The county that I've been getting to index is the Bronx.  I would have preferred Ulster county or Brooklyn (Kings county) but don't mind the Bronx too much because Uncle Steve and Aunt Mary lived in that county.  In 1930, Uncle Steve was separated from Mary and living with his mother, Teresa (my 2nd great-grandmother).  By 1940, Steve and Mary Duper were back together.  I hope to find them.
     Maybe the genealogy gods will smile down on me and have me indexing members of my own family.

Friday, April 20, 2012

A "Devine" Disappearance

     They arrived from Ireland.  They started a family.  They disappeared.

     Patrick Devine, my 3rd great-grandfather on my maternal grandmother's mother's side, met his wife Emily after arriving in the United States.  They lived in New York with their family.  Emily arrived from Ireland at the age of 6 and I have no idea when Patrick arrived.  Emily and her family left their home country during the Potato Famine.  Did the Devines flee from the famine as well?  I know that Patrick had a brother named John who married Mary.  I found Mary and their daughter Anna in censuses but I never found the Devine brothers.
     Where were Patrick and John?  When did they arrive in this country?  When did they die?  I have not come across any census records with either of these men listed.  Patrick and Emily had five children and I have a bit more information on only two of them.  Their daughter Teresa, was my 2nd great-grandmother.  Their son William died as a young man of only 20 years old.  William is buried in St Peters Cemetery which is located in Rosendale,NY.  The headstone has his name along with both parents yet he is the only one who is actually buried in that plot.  I don't have the death information for William's parents therefore I have no idea where they are buried.  The 1900 census has Emily as a divorced woman living with her youngest son, William.  Where was Patrick in 1900?  Was he still alive?  John Devine and Mary had only one child together according to the census records and Mary's obituary.  Although John is not in any of the censuses with his family, Mary's marital status is listed as 'married'.  Was John working somewhere else and listed in a census separately?  Mary and their daughter Anna are buried in St Peter's Cemetery in Rosendale,NY.  They each have their own headstone and John is not there.  Where is John buried?

     The Devines have disappeared...
           what a disappointment...

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

* Cell Block Sam *

     Every one's got a bad boy in their family.  My bad boy is my maternal grandmother's younger brother, Samuel.  I had written about Uncle Sammy in earlier posts regarding his bigamy and war desertion.
     Two of Uncle Sammy's cousins told me that he had spent time in prison.  The cousin on his father's side of the family told me that he spent time in Sing Sing prison which is located in Ossining, NY on the east bank of the Hudson River in Westchester county.  She did not know the cause of his incarceration but thinks it was back in the 1950's.  The other cousin, on his mother's side, told me that Sam had spent time in Dannemora prison which is actually Clinton Correctional Facility located in the village of Dannemora in Clinton county, close to the Canadian border.
     Both of these prisons are maximum security prisons.  What did my grand-uncle do to get sent to these places?  His father, also named Samuel, had spent a year or so in a reform school when he was a teenager.  His crime was incorrigibility.   like father, like son?
     I am unable to get prison records at this time, if they even exist, because I don't know Uncle Sammy's date of birth nor do I know when he was in prison, if he was actually a resident of the big house.
     Was Sammy really the bad boy as his family members suggested?  I wonder if I'll ever find out.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

~ Poughkeepsie ~

     I can't find Teresa in Brooklyn (1940 census) so I'll leave her alone for now and revisit Poughkeepsie,NY.
     I found 77 year old Flora Davis, my maternal 22nd great-grandmother (my maternal grandmother's father's  side) in the 1940 census living in the same house on South Cherry Street where she had been living for decades.  Her son-in-law, John Kyte is listed as head of household, followed by his wife Fannie.  Flora is the third person listed, as mother-in-law, with the word 'deafmute' next to her name.  John and Fannie's two daughters follow their grandmother on the list of residents for this address.
     In 1930, Flora's husband, Daniel is head of household and 'owner'.  The Kyte family is shown to be 'renting'.  At first I thought that this might be a large house and Daniel's son-in-law was paying to live their.  Then when I looked at the 1940 census, I saw that John Kyte who was renting 10 years earlier at this address is now owner and another family is renting.  I guess this is a two-family home?  This particular census also had an 'x' in a circle next to the person who provided the information.  Flora's daughter, Fannie gave all the information.
     In 1940, was John actually the owner? or was he listed as head of household since his father-in-law died three years earlier?  Was John Kyte now the man of the house?  Was the deed to the house transferred to John?
     The Davis family had a strawberry farm as well as the house in town.  I'll save the land/house records for another day.  That post should be interesting because supposedly the farm was either bought or sold for a dollar.  I'll have to double check with my mother.  We heard the story about the quitclaim deed from Flora's granddaughter-in-law.  The woman didn't elaborate though.  I'll have to research this.  A farm for a dollar?

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Flushing Avenue

been searching...  and searching...  and searching...

     I thought I would have found my 2nd great-grandmother, Teresa in the 1940 census fairly quickly once I had the enumeration district.  The 'ED' number in the 1940 census is not the same as the 1930 census but I converted the number with the help from Steve Morse's site
     In 1930, Teresa Duper was living at 991 Flushing Avenue with two of her sons, Steven and Gerald, and her granddaughter, Eleanor (my grandmother).  I found Flushing Avenue in the 1940 census and the block that my family lived on.  I found building 989 but didn't see 991.  I double checked the 1930 census to make sure that I had the correct address and I did.  Where was 991 Flushing Avenue?
     I called my mother and told her that her great-grandmother was nowhere to be found.  I told her that the 1930 census had Teresa's building number as 991 but I couldn't find it in the 1940 census.  My mother said that she didn't remember her great-grandmother's building having a '9' in it, she thought there was a '4'.  My mother was only 7 years old when her great-grandmother did.  I asked my mother if Teresa was definitely living on Flushing Avenue when she visited as a girl and the answer was "yes".  My mother told me to look in the photo album with the old black/white family photos because there's a photo of Teresa leaving her building.  She said that the building number is shown in the picture.   found the photos while I was talking to my mother.  There it is...  "434".  So, if this was my great-great-grandmother's address then what happened to "991"?  My mother suggested that the house number might have changed but that it was on Flushing Avenue.
     Later that evening, I checked the 1940 census again for address 434 Flushing Avenue.  I cannot find Teresa Duper with either address on Flushing Avenue.  I have to do more sleuthing.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Searching the Census

     I am beyond excited about the release of the 1940 federal census.  The only problem that I have is that it is not indexed so I need to know the enumeration district for each person I am searching.
     I decided to start my search of the 1940 census with two names who I believe were in the same location ten years earlier.  I have the enumeration districts from the 1930 census and was able to get the 'ED' for the 1940 census by visiting Steve Morse's site   I was able to convert the 'ED' from 1930 to 1940 to make my search a little easier.
     According to the 1930 census, my maternal grandmother, Eleanor was a 12 year old girl living with her maternal grandmother, Teresa and two uncles in Brooklyn, NY.  I don't know where MaMa's parents were in 1930 but I hope to find them and her brothers in the 1940 census.  Teresa Duper and her youngest son died tragically at home on New Year's Eve in 1955.  The newspaper article stated that she had lived in that apartment for 40 years which means that she was at this address in 1930 and still there ten years later.
     MaMa's paternal grandparents, Daniel and Flora Davis lived in Poughkeepsie, NY in 1930.  Daniel died in 1937 after being hit by a train.  Flora died in 1937four years later, in 1941, so she should be in the 1940 census.  They owned their home on South Cherry Street and had lived there for quite a few years.  I'm hoping that Flora stayed there even after her husband's death.
     Last night I tried to look up my ancestors with the enumeration district numbers from 1930 but couldn't find anyone.  After visiting Steve Morse's site, I converted the enumeration district numbers from 1930 to 1940.  By the time I found the new enumeration districts it was too late to start scrolling through page after page for each district.  I needed to get to sleep so I wouldn't be too tired after work the next day to continue searching the census.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

~ 1940 ~

     I'm back to blogging...  a day late.  I meant to post this yesterday.

     1940 is here at last!  The United States Federal Census is taken every ten years and is available to the public every 72 years.  I am so happy that the 1940 census is finally available for viewing and am sure that this will be a big help to those unanswered questions.  I hope to add a branch or two, locate missing family members, and fit together a few pieces of this genealogy jigsaw puzzle.
     The ancestors who seemed to have have dropped off the face of the earth might resurface with this latest census.

     1940 ~   the year of discoveries, broken brick walls, more answers, and a flourishing family tree...   hopefully...