Gene Notes

Some random and some not-so-random thoughts on family history.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Sympathy Saturday - Thomas DeMoss

At the age of 6 months and 25 days, Thomas DeMoss, son of John P. DeMoss and Mary E. Davidson DeMoss.

His Find-a-Grave Memorial can be found here.

Copyright 2010-2012, ACK for Gene Notes

Friday, September 28, 2012

Happy Anniversary! Thirty-Three and Counting

On this day, 33 years ago, I married my wonderful DH. I always love to recount the interesting day we had. First, he picked me up early in the morning and we went for a walk-through on the house we built. Well, it was already under construction. Our wedding day was also closing day. Closing was a disaster, DH threw a temper tantrum at his parents, egged on by his mother.

My sister, Diane, was my matron of honor and was late for my wedding. I almost ended up married to DH's best man. When I left the house I was renting with a friend, I locked myself out! Of course we didn't discover this till the next day. And then we forgot to check out of the hotel.

I like to think our wedding day was like life. It was unexpected, funny, and slightly disturbing. It certainly wasn't boring. Our life hasn't been boring either, and each year I fondly think back on that crazy, crazy day and look forward to what comes next.

Happy Anniversary, DH!

Copyright 2010-2012, ACK for Gene Notes

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Thriller Thursday - Herbert Davidson Percival - The Mystery Continues

Last Thursday, when I decided to reopen that particular can of worms that is Dr. Herbert Davidson Percival, I did not suspect I would ever find anything more on him.  I search for him constantly, ever hopeful that someday I would know for sure if he died at the hands of a robber (the family lore) or if he just took off.

I found some information that led me to believe he might still be in California in 1896, per a September 12, 1896 blurb in the Cincinnati (Ohio) Post:

"Unfavorable word has been received from Miss Cynthia King. She has asked for further leave of absence from the school board on account of her health. She is at Los Angeles, Cal., and is most delightfully situated with Dr. and Mrs. Herbert Percival."

Really? Per the 1896 Los Angeles City Directory, Kate Percival is listed as the widow of Dr. H. D. Percival.

Then I found this article in the Los Angeles Times on June 19, 1896 on page 10:

"Decree of Divorce

Kate G. Percival was granted a divorce from H. D. Percival in Judge McKinley's court yesterday, upon the ground of desertion. "

Do you divorce a dead man? Not likely. So is it likely that Miss Cynthia King was happily situated with Dr. and Mrs. Herbert Percival? I don't think so.

I have always had that niggling thought that Herbert took off. My personal feeling is that he was always living in the shadow of his cousin, Dr. William Percival (Kate's second husband.) Certainly no letters survive in our family archives after the late 1880's when his Aunt Eliza Oliver Shacklett nee Percival died.

Copyright 2010-2012, ACK for Gene Notes

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Wedding Wednesday - Bowman & Chinn

John Parker Bowman, son of William Bowman and Nancy Todd Parker was born in 1817 in Kentucky. On Sept. 26, 1837, he married Mary Elizabeth Chinn, daughter of  Dr. Joseph Graves Chinn and Barbara Garland Graves. Their union was blessed with 6 children, Isabella, John C., Joseph, Edwin, Frank and Clifton.

Copyright 2010-2012, ACK for Gene Notes

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Tuesday Trash or Treasure

To file or not to file. I can't tell you how much I hate filing. And I am probably not alone. No, I don't file everything I print. And to be honest, while I print out census in draft form, and only for the family I want on the page, I don't keep that copy once I've linked it and entered the census fact into my database.

However, there are things that I do keep. That odd piece of paper that might give me a clue as to the birthplace of an ancestor, a note someone wrote listing people who went to an out of town funeral and whose names I don't recognize, a newspaper article about another relative. Actually those all get scanned and the info put in the notes.  I just can't let go. There have been a few times when I've gone back to look at those notes, looking for clues as to the people mentioned, or where they lived. Usually that triggers a census search.

So, no, they aren't trash. Not to me.

Copyright 2010-2012, ACK for Gene Notes

Monday, September 24, 2012

Monday Moanin' - Weekend a Bust ...

Genealogy-wise, last weekend was a total bust! We've had a lot going on around at the house the past few days and this week doesn't seem to be getting any quieter. We have a few weeks left before we expect the first serious frost of the autumn and we have been rushing to get our landscape ready for more landscaping.

When I did get a brief chance to search out something I came up with a big fat ZILCH! And nothing really new to catch my interest at or Sigh. Isn't that always the case when you break through a brick wall? You want to put "FOUND" or "COMPLETE" next to the subject and move on to something else! After I check the catalog!

In the meantime, I will move on to something else. Not sure what, but since I still have 208 items left on my to-do list!

Copyright 2010-2012, ACK for Gene Notes

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Sympathy Saturday - John Skirving

 From The Scotsman, Edinburgh, Scotland, Nov 20, 1833, p 4:

At Etobicoke, in Upper Canada, on the 22d September, Mr. John Skirving, late farmer, Monkton Hall, county of Edinburgh."

John Skirving was born 18 May 1776 in Inveresk, Midlothian, Scotland, the son of Robert Skirving and Jean Robertson.  On November 28, 1806, he married Margaret Wardlaw. On April 13, 1833, the family set sail from Cromarty and landed in Quebec on June 15. On July 9, the reached their new home of Toronto.

He died from malaria two months later. He was my great-great-great-great grandfather.

Copyright 2010-2012, ACK for Gene Notes

Friday, September 21, 2012

That Felt Really Good!

I haven't done much research in the past few months, other than searching the 1940 census. Therefore, it felt really good the past couple of days to really get into "research mode" and poke a hole in one of my brick walls.

I hope you all are following along on my Thriller Thursday - Herbert Percival theme. If you want to catch up, simply google Herbert D. Percival or Herbert Davidson Percival + Gene Notes and you will probably find everything I have ever written about him. Or you can start here. Herbert's story, at least the part I think I know of it will unfold in upcoming weeks.

Am I a tease or what?

Copyright 2010-2012, ACK for Gene Notes

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Thriller Thursday - Herbert Percival Revisited -- Again

 I've written before about my Family Mystery - which is to say - what ever happened to Dr. Herbert D. Percival.

Herbert was my dad's great-granduncle, the brother of his great grandfather, John Henry Percival. Born about 1859 in Missouri, Herbert went to live with his uncle Jabez Percival in Covington, Kentucky by the 1870's. His father, John Stearns Percival, Jr., died outside of Little Rock, Arkansas, in 1863 while in the 5th Missouri Cavalry (Confederate.)

Herbert, while living with uncle Jabez and Aunt Kate, studied medicine at the Medical College of Ohio - later a part of the University of Cincinnati. He graduated from there in 1883 with his cousin, William Bush Percival.

On June 24, 1884, in Covington, Herbert married miss Catherine "Kate" Gray. The would have one child, a son, Robert Hemingray Percival, who died at the age of two months on August 7, 1885 in Covington. 

Herbert and Kate resided in Devil's Lake, North Dakota, where he was licensed by the North Dakota Board of Medical Examiners on February 28, 1887.

From there, Herbert and Kate moved on to California, where in the early to mid 1890's Herbert disappeared off the face of the earth. In 1897, Kate, now a widow, marries her husband's widowed cousin, Dr. William B. Percival.

Recently, released an index called the Deceased Physician File. I found Herbert in it, maybe 3 times. At least two of the following records are the same person, and I am on the fence about the H. D. Percival record. However, I do accept the Herbert D. Percivan and Herbert C. Percival are the same people - both graduated the same year from the same school.

He has been my Mystery Man for all my researching days, since I discovered him early on in my research. Family legend he went out to collect fees one evening, was probably waylaid, and the body disposed of never to be seen again. Fact or fiction, I have no idea. I would dearly love to solve this puzzle!

Copyright 2010-2012, ACK for Gene Notes

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Wedding Wednesday - Webb & Graves

Every so often you come across a record for a marriage that contradicts other records. This marriage between John Vivion Webb and Mary Louise Graves took place on September 19, 1820 in Madison county, Virginia. Or it took place on September 13th. My guess is the 13th is the bond or license date and that the marriage did indeed take place on the 19th.

They were my great-great-great grandparents on my dad's side.

Copyright 2010-2012, ACK for Gene Notes

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Remembering When

I never in all of my parochial school days endured a teacher's strike. Actually, I think that honor was reserved for my freshman year of college. The next one I remember is when my kids were in school in Livonia and the teachers went on strike.

Many years later, I hired in at the city of Livonia and one of the conditions of employment was I had to join a union - AFSCME - probably the most useless union ever. I remember being told at time of employment that our union could never go on strike. Not that I believe in striking, but what's the point of being in a union then?

It really makes me appreciate retirement!

Copyright 2010-2012, ACK for Gene Notes

Monday, September 17, 2012

Monday Moanin'

Boy, am I finding it hard to get motivated to do anything right now. DH and I were gladly anticipating the delivery and assembly of our gazebo today and it's raining. Blah! It's Monday, so that means an intense round of physical therapy on my right knee and when I get home and if it's still raining? Mostly it will mean I don't want to sit down in one position, knee bent for any time.  Tuesday's forecast is also rainy. And busy.

Maybe I will just enjoy the forced inactivity and work on linking some census ...

Copyright 2010-2012, ACK for Gene Notes

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Sympathy Saturday - Harry Whiteside "White"

Harry O. White was born Harry O. Whiteside, a son of Samuel Stanton Whiteside and Mary "Mae" Zimmeth and was my first cousin, once removed. The obituary is from the Coos Bay, Oregon "World."

September 20, 2000 Harry O. White.  Graveside services have been held for Harry White, 94, of Sixes. Interment was held at Port Orford Cemetery.  He was born Feb. 5, 1906, in Mich. He died Sept. 15, 2000, in Sixes. Mr. White grew up around Flint, Michigan, and lived in Colorado for awhile before moving to Oregon when he was a young man. When he met his wife Frances (Curry) in Bandon they married in Nevada and settled in Elk River. He was a longtime resident of Elk River Road, living on his dairy ranch. He was a hard-working rancher, milking his cows by hand and helping transport milk products around the area. He also worked at the old mill for awhile in Elk River before he retired. Harry and Frances stayed in the area all of their 60 years together before she died in 1996. He is survived by his friends and those who cared for him.  He was preceded in death by his wife, Frances; and his five brothers and sisters.  Memorial contributions can be made to a charity of choice. Arrangements are under the direction of Amling/Schroeder, Bandon Chapel, 347-2907.

His Find-a-Grave Memorial can be found here.

Copyright 2010-2012, ACK for Gene Notes

Friday, September 14, 2012

A Little Color - 1875 Style

I found this little blurb while doing a search on Genealogy Bank, and thought I would share it. I always try to get the citation details somewhere on the page for reference when I attach the image to the people mentioned.  I thought the story added a little color to the family.

Copyright 2010-2012, ACK for Gene Notes

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Too-Too Thursday - 1940 Done - Sort of!

Happy Dance in Tennessee as I celebrate the end of  the search phase of the 1940 census. The Zimmeth family gave me the usual trouble, with only my mom's brother and sister being indexed correctly. Mom was indexed as Sammeth on and Tommeth on Her father, not unexpectedly was not found. Also not found was his third wife, Ruth Ellen Bowsher/Smeaton Hessling Stanley Moore. (See previous posts about this wild woman.) By 1940 I think she was divorced from Thomas Lloyd Moore, who was already married when he married Ruth. I tried searching for her by just her first name and couldn't pinpoint her that way either. Another missing Zimmeth is my mom's first cousin Leo. I presume he was using an alias at the time since I can't find him or his wife. Since I am aware of only one alias for him, I think he just evaded the census taker. Grandpa was probably living on the streets of Detroit by 1940. Now to start working on prepping those census for transcription and sourcing!

Copyright 2010-2012, ACK for Gene Notes

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Wedding Wednesday - Bowman & Crenshaw

On September 12, 1901 in River Forest, Cook county, Illinois, Mr. Andrew Bowman to Margaret Crenshaw. 

This was their engagment announcement:

The engagement of Miss Margaret Crenshaw of River Forest, Ill., and Mr. Andrew Bowman, of Fayette county, is announced, the wedding to take place the 12th of September, at the bride's home. Miss Crenshaw is the daughter of Mrs. G. D. Crenshaw, and has always been one of Versailles' most admired young women. She removed to Illinois several years ago. Mr. Bowman is one of the county's prominent young farmers, and is very popular in both business and social circles.

Copyright 2010-2012, ACK for Gene Notes

Tuesday, September 11, 2012


Sure, when you think of 9/11, you probably think of 2001. Me, I remember that 9/11 is my older sister's birthday! Happy Birthday, Sue!

Copyright 2010-2012, ACK for Gene Notes

Monday, September 10, 2012

Working Hard

I managed to sandwich in some internet census searching after working outside in the garden today. Today's task was to dig up my giant yellow iris bed in prep for some "construction" in our yard. Wow. The irises came from a friend in Michigan the first year we were in our house. They were fruitful and multiplied.

On the census front, I'm down to 43 on the second-look and can't wait to wind this down. Soon.

Copyright 2010-2012, ACK for Gene Notes

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Sympathy Saturday - Daisy DeLong Bowman

Lexington Leader, Lexington, Kentucky, obituary, 12 September 1909, p8 c4.

The funeral of Mrs. Daisy DeLong Bowman, infant daughter of Mr. And Mrs. A. Smith Bowman, will take place at the residence of J. C. Berryman, corner Market and Second streets, this morning at 9:30 o'clock. Rev. C. F. Moore will officiate. The pall bearers will be D. C. Berryman, J. S. Botots, F. A. Bullock, J. D. Purcell. Burial in the Lexington Cemetery

Daisy Bowman was born September 25, 1908 in Lexington, Kentucky and died on September 8, 1909 in Lechbridge, Alberta, Canada. 

Copyright 2010-2012, ACK for Gene Notes

Friday, September 7, 2012

Done - Well Almost - Um No Where Near Done!

Okay, I have finished the initial search for census records and am now searching the 90 odd that I should have found the first time. The number of found 1940 census records is over 1300. The other 200 plus are non-1940 census records. Looks like I will have a busy winter.

Copyright 2010-2012, ACK for Gene Notes

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Too-Too Thursday - 1940 Census - Almost there

 I have 36 more records to search for on the 1940 census.I can't believe its winding down. Then I get to work on the nearly 1300 records I've found (all told I have 1509 which includes 1915 and 1925 New York state census and other years from the US and Canada.)

Copyright 2010-2012, ACK for Gene Notes

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Wedding Wednesday - Chinn & Delany

On September 5, 1858 in Monroe county, Missouri, Nancy Ellen Chinn, daughter of Christopher Chinn and Nancy Shropshire married William Delany.

Copyright 2010-2012, ACK for Gene Notes

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

1940 Census Update

Less than 100 1940 Census left to find. I love to see a phase of a project wind down, don't you?

Copyright 2010-2012, ACK for Gene Notes

Monday, September 3, 2012

Labor Day

I love Holidays. Although, Labor Day as a holiday always confused me. Should we labor on Labor day? For sure someone is. Whether it is a first responder, nurse, doctor, utility worker, you can bet somewhere is working today.

I grew up in a blue-collar home in a blue-collar neighborhood. My dad was the custodian for the Catholic parish we belonged to. I know there were times when he was called into work on a holiday to fix something in the church rectory or even the church itself.

My mom didn't work outside the home until my younger sisters were teens, with the brief exception of about a year when I was 9. But she worked so hard in our home raising 6 kids, doing laundry, cooking, cleaning, etc. Even on Labor day.

Thanks to all those people who labor for a living, and that raise families - truly a labor of love.

Happy Labor Day!

Copyright 2010-2012, ACK for Gene Notes

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Sympathy Saturday - Isaac Gatewood Bowman

Isaac Gatewood Bowman was born October 15, 1820 in Kentucky, the son of Abraham Bowman and Nancy Ann Overall. He died September 1, 1907 in  Dallas, Texas and was buried in the Estes cemetery in Grand Prairie, Texas.  Visit his Find-a-Grave memorial here.

Copyright 2010-2012, ACK for Gene Notes