If you have information, stories, photographs, etc., to share about anyone in my family, please contact me - howardka at earthlink.net. If you use anything from this blog, please contact me for permission to post/use elsewhere. I don't mind sharing but would like credit for these original posts and family photos.

Monday, March 4, 2013

Mr. and Mrs. Green Berry Jowers

Green Berry and Caroline Hicks Jowers, my paternal great grandparents

Sometimes in this family history journey I'm on, surprises pop up and a typical response is "What in the world!" This happened to me last week.

I'm taking a genealogy class at my local community college in Murphy. It's called "Searching for Your Family History on the Internet." It's the third time I've taken the class, and no, I didn't fail the first two times. There is always something new to learn. Websites add more records and information. New websites appear. Also, each time I've been at a different place in my research and knowledge, and what I heard a time or two before is finally getting through.

The class topic was the website FamilySearch.org. The instructor used Alabama, County Marriages, 1809-1950 (among others) to demonstrate how to search/find information on FamilySearch. I used that opportunity to search in class for marriage records for Green Berry Jowers and Caroline Hicks, my paternal great grandparents. I can tell you I was super excited when this time I found photos of the actual records. I downloaded the images right there in class to look at later when I got home. However, what I found when I looked more closely was a bit disconcerting. Check out the images below to see if you can find my concern.

I already had a transcribed index with marriage information I copied a few years ago. Green Berry was transcribed incorrectly.

Name: Grancerry Jowers
Spouse: Caroline Hicks
Marriage Date: 20 Feb 1864
County: Barbour
State: Alabama
Performed By
Judge of Probate
Performed by
J S Williams
Jordan Dodd, Liahona Research 

© 2011, The Generations Network, Inc.
Alabama Marriage Collection, 1800-1969
Source Information:
Ancestry.com. Alabama Marriage Collection, 1800-1969 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations
Inc, 2006.
Original data:
Alabama Center for Health Statistics. Alabama Marriage Index, 1936-1969. Alabama Center for Health
Statistics, Montgomery, Alabama.
Dodd, Jordan R., et. al. Early American Marriages: Alabama to 1825. Bountiful, UT: Precision Indexing
Publishers, 19xx.
Hunting For Bears, comp. Alabama marriage information taken from county courthouse records. Many of these
records were extracted from copies of the original records in microfilm, microfiche, or book format, located at
the Family History Library.
Dodd, Jordan R., comp. Early American Marriages: Alabama, 1800 to 1920.

This database contains marriage information from selected areas of Alabama from 1800-1973.

Barbour County, AL Marriage Index - Green Berry Jowers and Caroline Hicks are on the left side page, third from the bottom

Marriage License - Green Berry Jowers and Caroline Hicks are on the bottom right page

Can you see why I'm a bit concerned? Did you notice on both records that no marriage date is recorded??? What in the world is that all about? It looks like I've got some digging to do to find out if/when they got married. Personally, I think it's just a matter of when. Just another mystery to try to solve.

An added note of interest, the Barbour County, AL Marriage Index also has other Jowers men listed: Berry Jowers/Emma Stricklin (1888, Berry is Green Berry's son), Hilliard Jowers/Sarah F. Gary (1867, Green Berry's brother), H. N. Jowers/Sarah Williams (Green Berry's brother). I don't know the relationship to the other Jowers men listed.

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Martha Denny Langdale

My new year genealogy research got off to a great start. I had been looking for my English great grandmother, Martha Denny Langdale, in England's 1891 census for three years and I finally found her. I had found her easily years earlier in the 1901 census living with my great grandfather and five of her children at 3 Portsdown Place in the Maida Vail area of London.

I knew for three years where my great grandfather, Charles Langdale, was in the 1891 census . . . Wormwood Scrubs Prison in London, England. (That's a story for another day.) I was curious about what happened to his family. I searched for Martha Langdale by name, including a name variant, Langdell. Didn't find her. I looked for her parents, thinking she might have moved back in with them. Didn't find them. I looked for her living with other Langdale families. Didn't find her there either. I tried other searches. What I didn't try was using name variants other than Langdell. Thanks to checking the variant spelling box on findmypast.com, a genealogy website I subscribe to, on January 2, she showed up! She was listed on the census as Martha Lansdale.

Martha (24) was living with her three daughters, Margaret (7), Harriett (3), and Martha (1) at 109 Canterbury Road. It was a multi-family dwelling. No occupation was listed for her.

What stood out to me was her son, Charles, who would be 9 in that census, was not listed. Nor was a daughter, Ellen, who was probably born in 1885 and would've been 6 years old in 1891. I have baptism records for both. I did find a death index record for Charles, who died in 1883, less than a year old. I was very sad when I found that record. It also means my great grandmother was about 15 years old when she became a mother. I've not found a death record for Ellen yet. Martha and Charles went on the have five more children: Norah in 1893, Thomas Henry (my granddad) in 1895, Charles in1898, Dennis in 1900, and Frederick in 1901.  Norah died in 1897.

Martha didn't make it to the 1911 census. She died in 1902. She was 36. Her death was registered in the October, November and December Death Index book.  She left a lot of young children behind. Tragedy struck earlier in 1902 months before Martha died. Dennis died sometime between January and March . These were huge losses for this poor family.

In the 1911 census Charles was listed as a widower. A daughter, three sons (including my granddad), and a nephew lived with him.

1891 Census Martha Denny Langdale
Death Index Martha Denny Langdale
Death Index Charles Langdale

Death Index Norah Langdale