June 6, 2009

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun -- Ancestors-Where were they in 1909?

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun -- Where were my ancestors in 1909?

On my dad’s side-

My second great grandparents were in the great beyond...

My great grandparents William & Melissa Jane Raeburn ages 56 & 54 were living on Ashmumn Street in Sault Saint Marie, Chippewa County Michigan. William was listed as a teamster for a wood shop on the 1910 census. They had lived in the Soo for 10 years moving there in 1899 from Glen Huron in Simcoe County Ontario. Their four children were still residing there with them, Ernest age 26, William age 25 a bank teller for the First National Bank, Margaret age 21 and Anna age 14.

My grandfather Ernest Ferrier Raeburn was working as a first mate on a steamboat on the Great Lakes and in June would have been sailing. He was still a single man.

My great grandparents James Byard & Zilphie Elizabeth Wheeler ages 55 & 49, lived on Bealy(?) Street in Sault Saint Marie, Chippewa County, Michigan. James worked in a grocery store per the 1910 census, his occupation is unclear...and I have yet to figure out just exactly what he did for a living after leaving Canada where he was in the lumber business. One of their four daughters lived with them Ida age 12.

My grandmother Ethel A. Wheeler...well by golly Holly’s stumped. She was not at home with her parents James & Elizabeth. It never occured to me that she would be somewhere else in between parents and marriage to Ernest Raeburn. So I did a search, and I just couldn’t find her census wise. However Aunt Barbara’s notes say that sometime after she graduated high school, approximately 1906 and before she married Ernie in 1912...she went to Chicago with her sister Marjorie. Ethel was working for Sears in an office. So perhaps in June of 1909 my grandmother at age 19 was in Chicago working for Sears.

On my mothers side;

My second great grandmother Sarah Maine Cornell age 87 years old was the widow of Stephen Cornell and was living in Thedford Township( in possibly Lambton County, Well there’s some follow up work) in Ontario; she died there in January of 1910.

Her son, Webster Cornell and his wife Eliza Jane Smith ages 57 & 50 (my great grandparents) were living in Cleon Township, Manistee County Michigan I can’t make out his occupation on the 1910 census, however he was a store owner in Manistee.

Leo Dewey Cornell my grandfather was age 11 and living with his parents. Leo was adopted, and his birth father William Rust died just before his birth. Both he and a sister just two years older were adopted by the Cornell families. His birth mother Mary Almira Ellis Rust remarried a Mr Guthrie and their location in 1909 is unknown.

My 2nd great grand father Mahlon P. Reynolds at age 77 was living in an unknown location. Hmmm he died in Mecosta County Michigan in 1920, where his son Wibur lived.

Wilbur A. Reynolds and wife Hettie Gorton (my great grandparents) ages 49 & 46 were living in Wheatland Township, Mecosta County Michigan. He is listed as a laborer for the county roads on the 1910 census, he was also a farmer.

My grandmother Joyce Blanche Reynolds age 10 was living with her parents in June of 1909.

So there it is....clearly more work is needed. This exercise puts a new perspective on location importance I didn’t think about. The census doesn’t have it all. I knew that but this woke up my sleepy eyes!


  1. When you say teamster, are you talking about teamsters that we see today...Union type, or the men that hauled freight? My husband's gr gr grandfather was a teamster from NY who's family moved to Chicago after attending a freight conference in Chicago in the 1840's.

  2. Well I figured it meant he was a hauler of 'goods'. I did a little googling and found the Teamsters Union was organized in the 1880's for 'those who hauled goods and was looking at that time to organize small town local teamster groups....so perhaps both might be relevent in this case...I don't know how I could find that one out....hmmmm

  3. See Corruption and Reform in the Teamster Union by David Scott Witwer...(google books)

  4. Thanks...My grandmother's father's family was from Jackson county in Michigan.