Thursday, December 3, 2015

Abraham 'Harry' Baker's life sketch with wives Ann Stone and Harriet Middleton Kendall

Harry was born in 1830, christened on 26 February 1830 in Towcester.  His father was a hawker-- sold fish and other game he caught.  His mother worked at home.  Harry was born the oldest son in the middle of a large family, all probably helping work in the fields with their father.

On 29 August 1853, Harry married Ann Stone, a young mother with two children by a relationship with a young man named Joseph Phillips.  Those children lived with their maternal grandparents John Cole Stone and Frances Riddy. 

Ann and Harry had four more children together.  Like many in Towcester, Harry was trained as a Shoemaker, although his family had been hunters and fishermen by trade.  When times got tough, Harry also hawked fish and game.  Ann worked as a dressmaker.

Ann died after 10 years of marriage, leaving Harry to care for his children alone.  His oldest was 8, the youngest was 3.  Harriet Kendall (Middleton) was a young widow caring for her 2 children alone and lived on the street where the Baker family owned a meat market.  Perhaps they met there when Harriet bought her meats for supper.  They married in June 1864 and raised their children together in Harriet's home at 176 High street, now Watling street in Towcester. 

The children ranged in age from Harriet's oldest son Benjamin who was 11 to Harry's youngest Abraham who was not yet 4.  Benjamin ran away when he was 14 to America.  Harry and Harriet stayed together on High street in Towcester through the years, finally ending up in Kettering, about 25 miles north of Towcester, where they both died.  Harriet died in 1803-- Harry in 1807.  Harry's son William and daughter Fanny also lived in Kettering.  

For more detail on Harry, see the post on Harriet Middleton Kendall Baker.  

Sunday, August 9, 2015

Mildred Bloss is Carrie Bloss' daughter, not Roses'

I have wondered how we ended up with 14 kids for Rose and Richard Bloss when they reported on two different Censuses that they had 10 of 12 total children living.  If my count is right, they had 11 of 14 kids living in each census-- 1910 and 1920.  So I knew there were two kids listed with them that weren't their kids.  (Interestingly, Mildred is not listed with the family in 1900 when she would have been 6 years old.  Where was she?)

When I found Carrie's obituary, it named the surviving siblings to Carrie.  Instead of listing Mildred as a sister to Carrie, it named Mildred as the only surviving daughter to Carrie.  That was big!  I wanted to confirm this, as there could be two Mildreds-- a Mildred Lind (Carries' daughter) and a Mildred Bloss (Rose and Richards' daughter.)  After all, in those two Censuses I already mentioned, Mildred is listed as the daughter to Richard.  And there are a handful of papers that are addressed to Mildred Lind (the ones claiming Carrie's life insurance policy payout.)  So what was going on?

The confirmation came when I looked for a letter in the many papers that survived these two women.  (Remember that I have the effects of Mary Sophia, Rose, Carrie and Mildred.)   I wanted to see how they viewed each other.  I needed to find a letter written to or from 'Mildred Bloss' not 'Mildred Lind', and it needed to be written to or from Carrie.  I found that letter-- from Mildred to Carrie, with that written clearly on the envelope.  The letter is addressed simply, 'Dear Mother.'  I'll post it here.

Interestingly, Mildred refers to Rose as 'Ma' in her letter and Carrie as 'Mother.'  

So Mildred was born to Carrie and given the name of Bloss for a last name.  That would imply that there was no marriage prior to her birth.  Carrie would have been 21 years old, still living at home and helping her mom quite a bit.  The letters all describe Carrie as a big help to her mother.  I would surmise that Mildred was pulled right into the household and raised along with Carries younger siblings.  After all, Rose and Richard went on to deliver another child or two.  The last one was born when mother Rose would have been almost 45 years old!  Carrie would have been 25 years old at the time.

There is another child in the family that really belongs to a different family.  I suspect it is Willie, born in 1896 and died just a few months later.  He's buried in a different place in the cemetery, away from Rose, Richard, Carrie, Oscar, and the two children that died in their early childhood-- Archie and Kate.  He's about 40 feet away, and his name isn't on the large Bloss monument either.  Remember that Rose reported 10 of 12 kids living in 1900.  We have the names of the two who passed away on their family stone as Archie and Kate.  Does Willie really belong with someone else? Has he been lumped in with Rose and Richard without really having any idea that he belongs there?

Olive delivered 2 children and gave them the last name of Bloss-- Leland in 1901 and Margery in 1904.  Did she also deliver Willie in 1896?  Or did Carrie deliver him, as this was just 2 years after Mildred's birth.  Is there a birth record for him?  Many of them were destroyed by fire.  It's something to look into.  Until then, we can see what these letters reveal about any other mislabeled kids.

Friday, August 7, 2015

Mary Sophia Harvey Kingsley Leonard Amy had a Sister!!!

I put two and two together yesterday from a set of letters I received from my cousin in Pennsylvania. Two letters that is.  Two letters were written by Mary Sophia Amy and sent to her daughter.  One was specified for Roses' 12 year old son Clarence.  Both share something about her sister that wouldn't be usable alone.  I got a name (hard to make out) from one letter and the relationship and age from the other.

Here they are:

Mich, Howard City, Nov 21, 1901

(At top:  This picture the boys found only the fish)

Dear Child Rose,

I was glad and surprised to get a letter from my noisy boy.  Guess he has changed a good deal as he is so interested in his school and to write a letter to me which pleased me very much.  I see it wasn't Jane writing on the letter and thought it was Lottie, first but was pleased to find it came from Clarence.  Would like Lottie to keep her promise of writing next time.  I think Della's little art picture was pretty good.  Tell her to try again.  I do think that Kate is not doing for me as she would like me to do by her in not answering my letters.  She don't care to hear from me as that is the way I should think.  I suffer Carrie don't get time to write.  She has so much to do.  But I am glad you don't give up that way.  I had a letter begin to Nara, Freemont's girl but have laid the letter away that had the address in and can't seem to find it.  Must look again.  I am staying for a few days with a Mrs. Graves and children for company as one of her boys wasn't well, had throat troubles, is some better today.  Can eat some today.  I sent by her for my mail this morn, she brought a letter for me from your Aunt Dennis.  She isn't any better.  She says it seems so bad that her children can't be near her when she so bad.  Well I haven't got the business seen to yet.  I thought it would have been done before this but it has to go just so long it made feel quite blue when I would hear of the snow in so many other places as I heard it was 2 feet deep up north and their ant milk you was snowing.  There is rain here at present but a week ago there was a little flurry, all went of course.  Well I hope Carrie won't be away long and leave you to do the work.  I suppose Richard is at work again now.  You know I told you my tick hurt me so when I write it was real bad when I sewed much too.  The Dr. that called to see the boy said I had what was called muscular rheumatism and I get some powders of him for it and taking them for it now.  Mrs. Graves has rheumatism and he is treating her.  She is lame in her feet.  I had a letter from cousin Irus' folks last week they don't like it up there she says.  It is awful lonesome up there.  If he had only stayed here and worked their place it would have been so much better but he is no farmer.  But the mill he worked at burned down so it lets him out of steady work.  Well well Rose be careful of yourself as you can give my respects to Irus' folks and his (illegible-- Thaits) and my love to all of our folks and a kiss for the little ones and remember me as your loving mother.

22nd dear Child as it came to my mind that this was your birthday I am writing a few lines more and will have to send this to the office and have them put the directions on the paper and have them put it on for me.  I wish you may have a happy day and many more.  Would like to have sent you some kind remembrance if I had the chance but you have my love and best wishes of your mother.

Mary S. Amy 

Dear Grandson, November 21, 1901 Howard City

I received your kind and welcome letter last night.  A young man by name of Charlie Johnson brought it to me.  I am staying for a few days with a lady nearby name of Graves whose boy wasn't very well and she felt rather lonesome nights as her husband is working away and her other son is going to school at ... the boys' names are James and Byron. James is twelve, going on thirteen in June, Byron is 11 in April. He has what the doctor calls quinsy, but seems to me more like enlarged tonsils. His mother went to see the doctor this morning. It seems so strange to hear of so much snow at place we have none but frost  in the morning it snowed just a little just a few days ago but went off when the sun came out again. This is a beautiful morning. Well my son you have written me a nice letter and I was very much surprised but glad and now I shall expect one often until I can come and see what you are all doing. Glad you are so interested in your school. That is right. Keep on and be a good scholar and when you are older you will be glad. I was at church last sunday quite a few out. I have just got a letter from my sister in York state. She is older than your grandma two years, and she is sick and no one to care for her or don't, only a neighbor woman.  It seems as though her children could be near her to care for her dont it?  There is a man here who has cancer and he looks so bad it makes him sorry for him(self) he gets a little better, then worse.  Well we'll close and say with my love for all from Grandma.  write again

Here is a scan of the page from the letter that give the name 'Demis' or whatever.  What does it say?  Doris?  Dorcas?  Demis?  Dennis?  I circled the name below, I could use a little help here.

Clearly Mary's sister had married, so her last name would be different.  And she had children.  I'm using birth year 1831, since the birth year I have settled on for Mary is 1833 from her daughter Rose.  Can we find her? 

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Carrie Bloss Lynde's Postcards-- need help identifying senders!!!

Through a kind gift from a distant relative, I am now in possession of a pile of letters, documents, post cards and photographs once owned by Carrie Bloss Lynde.  I am learning a great deal about these dear relatives of mine as I read these old documents.  I thought I'd scan these in and see if anyone else knows who these people are.  I color corrected these these to make the writing stand out more, so excuse the weird colors.

Some of the people who wrote these messages are unknown to me.  The most mysterious is a 'cousin' named Carrie.  She wrote very detailed post cards to our Carrie, seeming to know a lot about the family.
An alarming note on the middle postcard reads, "Elva was here a few minutes yesterday and she said Cole came home and she did not believe that he would have more than a few days to live.  Is that true?"  I don't know who Cole is either!  He is mentioned in several post cards by others to Carrie, usually in connection with Olivia 'Ollie' Bloss.  Is he her son?  Or another husband?  She married first to a Peter Broman in 1896 then a William White later.  

These postcards are from a cousin named 'Lilla'.  Speaks of her mother who's leg got better but then her arm and shoulder broke out with sores.  January and March of 1910.  Postmarked Union City, PA.  

These are from a cousin named May, who signed one of these as from May and Gene.  Who is she?  She writes from Corry PA.  Cards dated 1908-1910.
These postcards are from Eva Bloss, cousin of Carrie.  Who is she?  How does she relate?  She wrote these from Corry, PA.  Postmarked 1909.

More cousins wrote Carrie.  Help me figure them out:  The top one, Allene or Altrene or Alliene, wrote about Mildred from Erie PA.  Not 100% sure she's a cousin.  The middle one-- cousin Grace mentions a Clifford and an Anna in 1908;  The bottom one-- cousin Mabel writes from Union City, PA in 1911.   

The top one was written by a 'Coon' in 1912.  Guessing he's a little boy, who does he belong to?  Later he is linked to 'Gust' and I am assuming that's a relative of Oscar Lynde, Carrie's husband, because the name Gust appears often in his family.  The middle one is signed Enga dated 1910 posted in Polar Bluff, Missouri. The bottom one was posted in 1908 from Watsonfarms, PA.     It's signed Manda and Maze?  Can't really make it out.  Friends of Carrie?  

Sunday, July 26, 2015

A Deluge of Effects from Mary Sophia Harvey Kingsley Leonard Amy and her children

Recently, I was contacted by a distant cousin who had read this blog post about Rose Adele Kingsley Bloss.  Rose Saves Family  This cousin lives near the homesite of the home that Elias Kingsley built for his brother Elihu and sister in law Mary Kingsley around 1850.   She rescued many of the effects from this old home before it had to be destroyed 3 years ago due to it's age and deteriorating condition.  After getting acquainted on the phone, she offered to GIVE ME many of these effects!

We visited Sheffield, Tionesta, Warren and Kingsley Pennsylvania a few weeks ago to meet our cousin, research the area and collect the effects our cousin had in mind.  For a genealogist, it was like winning the lottery!

As I have done a quick once-over of the materials, I find in my possession some belongings of the following individuals:

Mary Sophia Harvey Kingsley Leonard Amy
Rose Adele Kingsley Bloss, Mary's daughter
Carolyn 'Carrie' Bloss  Lynde, Roses' daughter
Olive Maud Bloss Broman, Roses' daughter

The home also contained some effects belonging to Alice Bloss Workman as well, but they are being given to the Workman descendants.

There are many photos, almost without exception none are labelled with names.  There are many letters to the women listed above, as well as some hand crocheted lace, a couple of shoes, an apron, a infant girl's taffeta dress and an infant pinafore.  In all, it filled a rollaway carry on sized suitcase to the brim, with the fabric items and delicate rolled photos carried loosely in paper bag with handles.

I can hardly wait to catalog and post what I have in this blog!

As I process these effects, I will put what I learn here on the blog for help in understanding what we can learn from it.  Perhaps something will answer our nagging questions--- why did Mary leave?  I will also update the different posts here with the new information and date it.

I'm so grateful for these generous cousins!

Stay tuned!

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Emily Steele Jensen Joins the Daughters of Utah Pioneers

In 1933, Emily Steele Jensen applied for membership in the Wiltshire Camp of the Los Angeles Company of the Daughters of Utah Pioneers organization.  She cited several pioneers in her lineage, including John Steele Jr, Catherine Campbell Steele, James Jepson, Eleanor Nightengale Jepson, Mahonri Moriancumer Steele and Mary Ellen Jepson Steele.  She was admitted on 12 June 1933 by the then-president Cornelia S. Lund, of Salt Lake City, Utah. 

Emily's application shows her pride in her pioneer heritage as a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.  Her membership number 5972 indicates a rather small quorum in 1933, although today DUP boasts of over 88,000 members.  I was happy to show this old application to my fellow members here in the Yellow River Camp of the Gwinnett Company of DUP here in Georgia. 

Transcription:  My grandfather and his wife Catherine migrated from Scotland to Nauvoo July 8th 1845.  Came to Utah with the saints about 1847 where Elizabeth was born in Salt Lake City she being the first white child born in Utah.  Before coming to Utah three children had been born to John and Catherine the oldest Mary Campbell Steele, John and Margaret.  My father Mahonri was born May 1st 1849 at the corner of Liberty Park four other children were born in Utah, Susan, Ahna, Jane and Robert Henry making them the parents of nine children.  They went thru all the hardships of pioneering.  Brigham Young offered Grandfather a tract of land on the avenues in Salt Lake which at that time was hill and sage brush and looked useless and Grandfather was real insulted and told him if that was the best he could offer to keep it.  Later Brigham sent him to help settle Parowan and Toquerville, he was especially interested in Astronomy drawing charts for people and many of them came true.  Grandmother was engaged to the Kings guard before meeting Grandfather who was a fancy shoemaker and said she couldn't see how she ever married Grandfather but guessed she was to be tried thru all the trials she had to encounter.  She was a lovely woman and mother, her health was never very good and she died in Toquerville June 16, 1889.  Grandfather lived 14 years longer than Grandma. 

Emily and Alvin Jensen's Favorite Songs of their Era

Emily Steele Jensen was a singer and often performed at funerals and weddings, and other public venues as needed.  At home, she taught her children to sing the songs of the day, as well as hymns of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.  Some of the fun songs she probably learned in her youth became her favorites, as passed on to her descendants.  'The Little Black Mustache' song was one of her favorites, a song about love, charms, looks and disappointments.  This lyric sheet is among the papers passed on to her posterity.

'The Little Black Mustache' was written in 1881 by James E. Dow, and it remained popular into the 1920's.  (

You can see the sheet music for 'The Little Black Mustache' song and hear a woman sing it at this website:  Little Black Mustache song - Missouri State Archives

Another family favorite that is still sung at reunions is 'Another Perfect Day Has Passed Away' written by Clarence Gaskill in 1933. No online free music is found, but the old sheet music can be purchased on 

Another song of warning titled 'Don't Wear Your Heart on your Sleeve' hits close to the heart.  It was written by Edward B. Marks and put to music by Joseph W. Stern in 1901.  You can see the sheet music to it here:  Don't Wear Your Heart on your Sleeve - Indiana State

The 2 part round, 'We're on the Upward Trail' is now sung by children's groups and Cub Scouts.  You can find the music in the 2009 Cub Scout Songbook on pg. 73.

I remember my grandpa Garth and his brothers harmonizing beautifully as they sang 'Tumbling Tumbleweeds by Bob Dolan and the Sons of the Pioneers (1930).  You can find the chording here:  Tumbling Tumbleweeds Chords

'My Mother Was a Lady' is another warning song, similar to the others.  A country singer recently recorded it, although it was written in 1896 (another song by Marks and Stern.)    You can see the sheet music here:  My Mother Was a Lady - Mississippi State 

The simple song 'Down in the Valley' is a traditional American song, recorded as early as 1909.  It's been recorded by many people and is still sung at various settings.  Simple piano music to it can be found here:  Down in the Valley - simple

More verses to 'Down in the Valley' are found on the Wikipedia page of that name.

These old time songs bring back the sounds of the old days in which Pop and Emily lived.  It's a blessing that they passed these favorites on to their descendants for us to enjoy, and experience their world through songs.