Saturday, July 27, 2013

The Final (For Now) Post about the Robert Macken Family

I told you I had a small update on this family. So I thought I would get it out there before I finished up the Read children. I’m afraid that when I get buried in their story I will forget all about the Macken information.

I will go by age so Mary is first. I found her in the 1900 census as a maid in New York so I filled in that information. I also discovered that she married David Cronin in 1906, a widower at the time of their marriage. They had no children and I’m not sure David had any by his pervious wife either as there were none living with them in any of the census records I have. Mary died 1925 in Brooklyn and is also buried in Holy Cross.

Elizabeth “Lizzy” is next. She was first married to a man named George Droge in 1901. I only had her marriage to Connolly because of her brother’s obit and the SSDI entry for her. The couple had 6 children together. George died in 1922 and she stayed a widow for a few years before marrying John J. Connolly. I cannot locate a marriage record for them but I know they were married 1925-1926 according to the 1930 census. I found several articles about Elizabeth in NY newspapers due to the death of her youngest child, Laurence Droge. Apparently he was suffering from diphtheria and when Elizabeth went for help at the hospital where the family was on vacation they turned her away. When she got him to a private physician she was told he was already deceased. The articles take a she said-he said mentality so there really is no way of knowing exactly what happened concerning her hospital visit. There was even a picture of young Laurence at the burial of his father 3 years earlier. Poor boy!

James, died 1908, unmarried.

Joseph, died 1907, unmarried.

The last one with an update is William. I received a copy of his marriage record and he is definitely the one who married Pauline Shannon in 1914. I traced them through to the 1940 census and from the look of it they had no children that I can find. Or, none that survived long enough for the censuses. Both were alive in 1940.

As for Charles. I still have not been able to prove that he was in fact the one who married Mary but am still searching. Will keep you updated.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

David Read and His Two Wives

David Read was someone we knew a lot about once he immigrated to the United States but nothing previous to that. A passport application for his son Charles changed all that. David Read was born September 1806-1808 to James Read and his wife Penelope. According to Charles’ passport application he was born in Coventry, Warwickshire, England. When I checked marriages for Warwickshire I came across one that jumped out at me. James Read and Penelope Yates marrying 8 April 1792 at Holy Trinity, Coventry. David was not listed among the children but they seemed to have changed churches like I do socks. So it could be it was transcribed wrong or happened in a church that isn’t indexed online yet. We will have to wait and see. One of the interesting things is that one of their younger daughters was named Harriet, which was the name of David’s oldest child. It’s not definite but everything seems to point at them as being David’s parents.

David immigrated to the United States around 1817 according to information from the 1900 census. Who did he come with? I wish I could answer that. Without knowing more about the family I have no way of telling. I am currently going through New York County wills for the time period to see if there may be a hint in one of them. He also said in the census that he was naturalized but I have no idea when. Add to that the fact there won't be a lot of information on a naturalization record pre-1906 there isn't much hope of further details.

In about 1833 he married a woman named Margaret Hunter. He did NOT marry Susan Hunter. I will explain who Susan is soon. The first mention of David in City directories is 1835, the year Margaret was born. He was living at 463 Bowery St. and was a sash maker. Don’t bother looking for that address on current maps. It no longer exists. Since I knew Margaret is a Hunter I decided to look at the directories for that time for anyone with the Hunter name. I was planning on mapping them out to see if I could find any clues, when I found Martha. Martha was the widow of James Hunter who was also living at 463 Bowery. Coincidence? I think not. I traced her forward and back and discovered that James was last in the city directory in 1823. Meaning he died 1822-1823. It could take them a while to get the directories out so information for a person may have actually been gathered a year earlier. I trace James backwards and the first mention of him is in 1809, milkman, living at 217 Bowery. As for Martha going forward, she is listed until 1839 and after that seems to disappear.  So now to look for proof.

Margaret gave birth to four known children: Harriet Humphrey Read, 1835; Amanda, about 1836; Martha, about 1838; and David, 1845. That is a huge age gap in the children so we may find that there were one or two we do not know about. I will list the information about the children in my next post since I have some new information about them to sort. Margaret died between the birth of David in April 1845 and the time the 1850 census was taken.

We now come to Susan. Yes, I know the 1850 census lists her as Susan Hunter Reid but she was definitely not David’s wife. She was Margaret’s sister. She was more than likely living in the household when her sister died and stayed on to help with the children while David worked and until he remarried. Susan lived with her niece Harriet once Harriet married. She died in Brooklyn, at the home of Harriet, 12 June 1898. Unfortunately her death record lists her parents as Mr. and Mrs. Hunter but it does say she never married. Lot of detail!

About 1855 David remarried. Her name was Eliza Darling, daughter of John Darling and Catherine Hicks. They had two children: Charles, 1856; and Emma, 1858.

It’s easy enough to trace David through censuses and city directories and there are a lot of them so I will not bore you with the details. If you aren’t asleep by now you are drinking some really strong coffee! Don’t worry I’m almost done for now.

David lived a nice long life. He died in Manhattan 16 October 1900 at the age of 82 of old age. Well, he definitely wasn’t young! Eliza died 3 January 1913 in Manhattan at the age of 94 years, 11 months and 14 days old. They are both buried in NY Bay cemetery in Jersey City. I live not far from there so as soon as I know where the plot is I am going to drag my very-willing husband for a trip to wander the cemetery.

I think that is it for now. Will type up the information on his children in a separate post because there is a lot of info about them. Or, to be truthful, some of them.

So much for my New Years resolution!

Yes, I have been way behind in choosing my next family. I finally picked through records I have access to about the Macken family with no luck in placing them in Ireland. Guess I will have to wait to find that out. I do have one or two new updates on them which I will type up when I have time but I want to get started with the next family. With that being said. One that has recently grabbed my attention is the family of David Read and his two wives, Margaret Hunter and Eliza Darling. I am typing up what I know as we speak so will get that posted ASAP.

Yesterday I had the chance to sit in on a webinar hosted at legacy that was very informative. It was Top 21st Century Genealogy Resources by Tom Kemp. If you have a chance it is definitely worth viewing. You can read more about it at the following link:

Another group of webinars that I have become addicted to are the Barefoot Genealogists webinars done through Crista Cowan is incredibly knowledgeable and goes out of her way to help you out! If you can view one live it is definitely something you want to do. You can view the archives at livestream or at the you-tube channel. She just had one today about using city directories which is one of the things I will discuss in my post about David Read.

So, without further adieu I am off to tell you the story of David Read.