A genealogy blog about the migration generation of my McKee Family line, including bios, transcribed obituaries, photographs, and research notes.

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Sunday, February 27, 2011

Mary Kerr Campbell

One of my brick walls has been Robert Harvey Campbell, the son of Harvey Campbell and Jane McKee. However, I've made progress thanks to some notes sent to me by a member of the Burck/James line of the family.

Robert Harvey Campbell b. 10 Sep 1856 in Coulterville, Randolph County, IL and d. 1 Oct 1884 Coulterville, Randolph County, IL (Find A Grave 62231549).

Robert appears on the 1880 census still living with his parents. Between 1880 and 1883, Robert marries Mary Ann Kerr.

Mary Ann Kerr, the daughter of John A. and Mary Kerr, was born 9 Oct 1860 in IL and died 16 Nov 1880 Coulterville, Randolph County, IL (Find A Grave 62231587).

Robert and Mary Ann had one child: Mary Kerr Campbell b. 19 Sep 1883 Coulterville, Randolph County, IL.

With the death of her mother, Mary Kerr Campbell becomes an orphan. Members of the Campbell family--aunts Mary Agnes (Campbell) Woodside and Jane Minerva (Campbell) James--seem to have been unable to take in their orphaned niece.

In 1900, Mary can be found with her uncle, Robert H. Kerr (b. Feb 1856 in IL) and his wife Belle, in Birmingham, Ward 3, Jefferson County, AL. Robert was an attorney. He and his wife, Belle, had no children of their own. In addition to taking in their seven and 1/2 year old niece, Robert and Belle had already take in an 11-year-old nephew, Robert K. Marsh.

In 1909, Mary's uncle Robert dies in Birmingham.

In 1920, Mary can be found living with her Aunt Belle Kerr in Birmingham. She is working as a librarian.

In 1930, Mary can be found living with her Aunt Belle Kerr in Birmingham. She is working as a clerk at the power company.

In 1937, Belle Kerr dies in Birmingham.

According to the obituary index at the Birmingham Library website, Mary Kerr Campbell's obituary appears on 24 February 1955. The Alabama Death Index shows Mary as dying 22 Feb 1955 in Tuscaloosa County, Alabama. I've sent for the obituary to see if it includes a list of survivors and a burial location.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Margaret Louise (Allen) Smith

The Houston Library comes through again with an obituary. This time the obit is for Margaret (Mrs. Hoyt Oliver Smith). I've added Margaret to Find A Grave (66137877). Hoyt is from the Smith/Booth line. Here's the line:

Hoyt Oliver Smith-->Emma Salena (Booth) Smith-->
Ananias Jackson Booth (Jr.)-->Ananias Jackson Booth (Sr.)

On Find A Grave, you can follow the family links as far back a A.J. (Jr.).

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Loyce Marie (Weeden) Leete preferred Lois

A Random Acts of Genealogical Kindness volunteer followed up and located an obituary for Loyce Marie Weeden, Mrs. Jack Edward Leete. According to the obit, she went by the name Lois Leete. You can see Lois' memorial on Find A Grave (66058460).

Over the past few days, I've continued confirming that status of people who carry an L custom code. Along the way, I've cleaned up a few mysteries using Pipl to look up info that I've missed in the past.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

This and That

I've been corresponding with my newfound Henderson/Uptergrove cousin Jackie. We've been trading pictures. I've sent Jackie a gedcom so that she can review what I have and fill in missing info where she is able and/or suggest corrections. I've already had to go through and change Trueman to Truman. I've also sent her a few scanned documents just so she has them.

The weather this past weekend must have improved or people got cabin fever because I had lots of pictures posted to Find a Grave memorials. One gentleman posted eight.

I've successfully located obituaries that I've missed in the past. Look at the following Find A Grave memorials:

--Harry Thompson McGuire: 34993552
--Helen Berdelle (McGuire) Hager: 47060373

With Helen's obit, I could finally marry off her daughter Mary Olive Hager to John Ed Wiebers. Thank you Newspaper Archive. In a routine search, I found that the Wiebers had received an award that is bestowed on a family or individual who has provided support, dedication, and loyalty to Northeastern Junior College over the years. The award is presented during the college’s commencement exercise each spring. The Wiebers famiy received the award in 2004. Click here to read more about the award.

And now it's back to lurking for obits...such a ghoulish activity but necessary.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Contact with Uptergrove Cousin

I've had another contact from the Booth line. Jackie is from the Lucinda Ann (Booth) Henderson line.

Ananias Jackson Booth (Sr)-->Lucinda Ann (Booth) Henderson-->Cora Sue (Henderson) Uptergrove, and then through one of the Uptergrove children.

Jackie hasn't said which of the Uptergrove children. But then this is a first contact and most people are shy at the beginning. Also, it's prudent in the world today to be careful.

Jackie found me through my Rootsweb website, which is in great need of an overhaul. Websites are way more difficult to maintain that this blog is proving to be.

I've responded Jackie. So, we'll see what happens. It could be a start that results in lots of great trades. Regardless, it's nice to know about another cousin.

Custom IDs and Barbara Jean (Boyce) McGuire

I've written before about having a custom ID that I use to code my files. Here's a list.

F = I've made an entry on Find a Grave.
O = I've found an obituary. The ideal custom ID is FO.
D = The person is dead or probably should be dead. I may or may not have a date. If I don't have a date, I have to look for one. If I do have a date, I need to find an obit.
L = The person is getting older and I should be searching the Web for an obit.
- = The person is most likely living and not about to die anytime soon.

The genealogy world with its vitals can sometimes have a bit of a ghoulish aspect to it. My brother-in-law fell over laughing when I told him that L stood for lurking and that I routinely lurk on the Web looking for obits. He immediately demanded to see the custom ID on his entry in my database. He's not quite old enough yet to have earned an "L" status.

All of this leads to Barbara. I was lurking on the Net...looking at all my L people...when I came upon Barbara's obit. As usual it provided all sorts of information that I didn't have before. Click here to see the obit.

Unfortunately, the obit doesn't include a burial location. So I've changed Barbara's custom ID to O. If a memorial doesn't turn up on Find A Grave in the next few weeks, I'll have to decide whether to contact a family member. I can use Pipl.com to get contact info for the people mentioned in the obit.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

My Grandmother's Funeral

The boy is Billie June Luke and the woman is Mary Agnes (Leemon) Luke. They are the son and mother of Marguerite Murphy (Luke) Treme, the person just buried. Marguerite was my grandmother. You can find Marguerite on Find A Grave (47660066).

This poignant photo was taken by Lillie May Luke, Marguerite's older sister and a shutter bug. My aunt had Brownie camera and she snapped pictures constantly.

Great aunt Lillie is part of the reason that I started doing family research. She was always interested. I had a casual interest until a distant cousin sent me a box filled with my aunt's memorabilia, including a "My Family" book in which my aunt had made numerous entries. My aunt's book gave me a jump start on putting together a family tree that includes more than 1,000 people on the McKee line alone.

Billie, my uncle, was the oldest of Marguerite's three children. The other two children were Joy Treme and James Treme, my father.

The widowed Mary Agnes raised her grandson after the death of his mother. Billie was born out of wedlock and Mary Agnes seems to have been the only person willing to take him in. It was 1932, Depression Era, and based on a few saved letters, Billie and Mary Agnes live lives of quite desperation. Billie had his first after school job at age 8. He was told he would have to earn his way in the world and that he did.

Billie joined the Navy at 18, well into World War II. He was justifiably proud of his service. He was the recipient of several awards and medals.

From this rough start, Billie ended up a very successful person. He worked in the aircraft industry in California, and did quite well. Somewhere along the way he learned to play a guitar and was in a band. He was good enough that he did a bit of studio work.

Billie never had any children of his own. He seems to have been far too wounded by his early years. He grew up at a time when society judged and nobody let him forget the circumstances of your birth.

Speaking for myself, I never cared about the circumstances of Billie's birth. I loved him for who he was...wounds, warts, and all.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Too Odd for Words

The St. Petersburg Times, Sunday, 6 February 2011, page 15 A includes an article on pet cemeteries that include burials for humans. According to the story, most states have no statutes that bar having cremated human remains interned with those of a pet in a pet cemetery.

When I think of all the Find A Grave entries I’ve made, I don’t think that I’ve ever run into an internment that was in a pet cemetery. As a genealogist, I’ve often had to think outside of the box, but I have to admit that on my own I wouldn’t have gotten outside enough to look for a person in a pet cemetery.

I have to confess that I can look across the room right now and see the little box that has the cremated remains of one of my cats…my little Ziggie. She’s been in the same spot for almost two years as I ponder what I want to do with her.

Recently, I’ve settled on having her tucked in my coffin at my feet and buried with me in a people cemetery. However, it never occurred to me to have her added to my headstone as this article infers. Tucking a cremated pet into your coffin is legal in Florida courtesy of a state legislator who wanted to be buried with his beloved golden retriever. Being a power broker, he had a law passed. As a result, I can go into the beyond with Ziggie under foot where she always was.

I’ve got to say that it tickles me to no end that people in the future will be looking at my gravestone trying to make heads or tails of who Ziggie Tremé might be. I still have one more cat—Elvis—and if I can, I’ll add him too on the other side of my feet. So there will be a third being on my gravestone for people to ponder—Elvis Tremé.

I guess the upshot of all of this is that genealogists need to start tracking what is happening in pet cemeteries too. Who knew? The whole situation is just too odd for words.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Texas Birth Index Cross Check

A basic technique of using the index in Ancestry is to put in the father's last name as the name you're looking for and then enter the mother's last name in the Family Member field. I leave all other fields blank. The index will display every entry that matches the combination.

In my case, I had neglected to cross check the father's name Lobdell with the mother's last name Booth. When I did that, lo and behold, I had two matches that gave me the father's full name plus the mother's middle name.

Herbert Edward Lobdell and Margaret Pauline Booth were the parents of:
Yvonne Lobdell b. and d. 20 Jan 1936 in Wichita Falls, Wichita County, TX (FAG 52932259)
Marcia Jean Lobdell b. 8 Jun 1937 Wichita County, TX

Now it's a matter of trying to chase down more information on each of these people.