Religion

1812 marriage certificate for Isaac and Wealthy (Cushman) Jaques

Today I am posting a copy of the original 1812 marriage certificate that belonged to my third-great-grandparents, Isaac Jaques and Wealthy Cushman. It was among the numerous papers and clippings saved by my grandmother. I wish it contained details that would be helpful with connecting the Mayflower dots—e.g., the names of Wealthy’s parents. I assume the marriage took place in either New York City, where Isaac was making a career as a tailor, or Hartford, Wealthy’s birthplace. The couple and their children did not relocate to Elizabethtown, NJ, until 1843.

The pastor’s name was “N. Bangs”. This may very well have been Nathan Bangs, the self-taught itinerant theologian who was very well known at that time. He kept a diary of his travels and eventually wrote a history of the Methodist Episcopal Church in Canada and the US.

Categories: Bangs Nathan, Cushman, Elizabeth, Union Co., Jaques, Methodist Episcopal, New Jersey, Weddings | Tags: , | 2 Comments

Rev. Harry Baremore Angus (1883-1919)

Harry B. Angus, Rutgers College Class of 1905

I just came across the service of ordination bulletin from June 16, 1909, for  the late Rev. Harry Baremore Angus (1883-1919). Once again, I must thank my grandmother for being one to never toss anything out and my parents for holding onto it all these years.

I’d forgotten that Harry, son of Job Winans Angus (1856-1936) and Jeannette Tillou (1860-1932), died of the Spanish influenza—on April 30, 1919. Certainly that period in history is much more relatable now that we are in the midst of our own pandemic. Fortunately we are blessed with many more scientific advancements, although that is of little comfort to those who’ve lost a loved one. My sympathies to any of you who have found yourself impacted on a very personal level through the loss of a friend or family member.

Harry was in his mid-thirties and had been married to Miss Grace M. Kendall for less than four years. At the time of his death, his children were just 4 months old (Samuel Kendall Angus, later killed in Italy during WWII) and 2 years 9 months old (Elizabeth Dorothea Angus). Harry was buried in Evergreen Cemetery in the Angus plot. Grace survived to age 100.

A small bio of Harry appeared in the Philadelphia Inquirer on October 11, 1916, prior to his installation as pastor of McDowell Presbyterian Church in that city. Philadelphia. So much left undone at the end of the day. So much talent lost. But he’s not forgotten. Hopefully someday someone closely related to Harry will find this bulletin if perchance they don’t already have one in their family history files.

Philadelphia Inquirer, 11 October 1916 – Credit: Fulton History dot com

McDowell Presbyterian Church, Philadelphia; public domain image on Wikipedia

Categories: Angus, Elizabeth, Union Co., New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Presbyterian | 6 Comments

112-year-old Brodhead family guestbook — Post I

Honeymoon photo, Frank M. Brodhead and Fannie Bishop Woodruff, married June 6, 1908

In the coming weeks, I’m going to be publishing the pages of a guest book that was given to my grandparents when they moved into their new home at 736 Jersey Avenue in Elizabeth, Union Co., New Jersey, in June 1908.  Their minister Rev. William Force Whitaker of the First Presbyterian Church of Elizabeth was the first guest who signed in, and his handwriting matches the handwriting you see here, so the book evidently was a gift from him. About 18 months’ worth of guests is recorded. Many of you will recognize the names of those who stopped by. I’m not publishing all the pages at once since I will have comments to make about certain names and want to research some others.

I am going to assume that the house number 736 is correct, however, a previous post I did on my grandparents’ wedding contained a newspaper announcement that gave the house number as 732.  It could be that parents (Andrew D. and Margaret Brodhead) lived at 732, since I have seen that as their address, and my grandparents at 736.  A visit to Google street view indicates that both those homes have been replaced (quite recently it appears) by a townhouse-looking structure, so, alas, the number discrepancy is neither here nor there—there shall never be real estate listings showing the inside of those two dwellings.

The pages below show a child’s scribbles, revealing that my Dad or his brother must have gotten his hands on the guest book at some point. Or perhaps the scribbles were made by the children of some visitors…

The first page shows the following guests — after the Reverend (who resided at 142 Stiles Street, Elizabeth, NJ):

The Van Horn Children: Abigail Van Horn, Frances Van Horn, and Robert Osborn Van Horn

In any case, I will welcome your comments as you see names you recognize. Please feel free to share any information you may know about the people behind them for the benefit of other family members who follow this blog. Thank you!


Categories: Baker, Barksdale, Brodhead, Coleman, Elizabeth, Union Co., Family Homes, Heirlooms, New Jersey, Presbyterian, Townley, Woodruff | Tags: , , | 10 Comments

Irene Bell Wait of Perth Amboy, New Jersey—my new theory

Irene Bell Wait (b. 1764) married my fifth great-grandfather David Wait (b. 1754, Edinburgh, Scotland) on 21 April 1874. They lived in Perth Amboy, Middlesex County, New Jersey.

A recent comment left on my post Irene Bell Wait, one of my brick walls, which I wrote nearly 7 years ago, prompted me to go back and re-read it. You know, whenever I read my old posts, which isn’t very often, I kind of come away amazed that I managed to come up with so much information. Maybe some of you fellow family history bloggers feel the same way: “Did I write all that??!”

Anyway, that first post mentions an Andrew Bell, a witness to David Wait’s will, which was executed on October 29, 1810, shortly before David succumbed. His wife Irene Bell had died in 1804 at age 39, leaving him with 11 children, many of whom were still very young when he died. Twenty-year-old daughter Margaret was left a house in which she was to raise her younger siblings.

I wanted to try to connect Andrew Bell with Irene Bell as this was the first time I actually sensed I had a lead as to her possible identity, but my attempts to link the two failed.

My latest theory, and it’s only a very loose theory at the moment, was spawned by a reexamination of materials I’d already read and the discovery of a few new ones, and that is that Andrew Bell (b. 1757) and Irene Bell (b. 1764) were half-siblings.

This hinges on “Andrew Bell” being the Andrew Bell who was born in 1757, in Philadelphia, to English-born John Bell (cir. 1725-1778) and his first wife Hannah Smith, daughter of Frederick Smith of Philadelphia, hatter.* One other child, Cornelia Bell, was born in 1755. She eventually married William Paterson, one of the signers of the Constitution. She is mentioned on the website www.constitutionfacts.com under the heading “The Women Behind the Signers of the U.S. Constitution” (note: the birth and death dates are incorrect).

Andrew Bell and his father John Bell were Loyalists, while Cornelia was pro independence. How the family dealt with these divided loyalties is reflected in the numerous letters Cornelia wrote to her brother during the war years. You can read about this in the book Past and Present: Lives of New Jersey Women

At some point, the marriage between John Bell and Cornelia & Andrew’s mother Hannah Smith ended, and John Bell remarried on 27 April 1763, to widow Annaatje “Anna” Meyer Tilden (1731-1819, daughter of Johannes Pietersz Meyer and Elizabeth Pell**; Find a Grave memorial #16213136). Anna Meyer’s first husband Captain Richard Tilden had died in October 1762 in Philadelphia. They had been married for roughly 11 years and had had two children:

Richard, who died in infancy, and John Bell Tilden, December 1762-1838 (Find a Grave memorial #16213149). Obviously, given the second son’s name was John Bell Tilden, the Tildens had some very close connection to John Bell. And, clearly, John Bell did not hesitate to leave Hannah to go take care of the Captain’s widow and her infant son.

From p. 465-466  of Volume IX of The Encyclopedia of Virginia Biography, we can read the following about Captain Richard Tilden and son John Bell Tilden (note that the latter’s birth year here is given as 1761; his tombstone says 1762):

The Tilden or Tylden family is one of great antiquity in England; as far back as the reign of Edward III. We find William Tylden paying aid for land in Kent, when the Black Prince was knighted. ( I ) The first Tilden of whom we have record in America was Captain Richard Tilden of England, who died in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. October, 1762. He married Anna Meyer, born in New York, August 31, 1731, daughter of John Meyer and Elizabeth (Pell) Meyer, and granddaughter of William and Elizabeth (Van Tuyl) Pell. She bore him two sons: John Bell, see forward, and one who died in infancy. (II) Dr. John Bell Tilden. son of Captain Richard and Anna (Meyer) Tilden, was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, December 9, 1761, baptized in the Episcopal church, and died July 31, 1838, in New Town, now Stephen City, Virginia. He was a student at Princeton College at the time of the revolutionary war and left college to join the Continental army, receiving a commission as ensign. May 28, 1779, in the Second Regiment Pennsylvania line, commanded by Colonel Walter Stewart. He was subsequently promoted to second lieutenant, his commission to date from July 25, 1780. His regiment left York, Pennsylvania, for the southern campaign in the spring of 1781, and he was present at the siege of Yorktown and surrender of General Cornwallis.  At the close of the war he was honorably mustered out of service, and became a member of the Pennsylvania Society of the Cincinnati. During his entire service he kept a diary, which is now in the possession of the Pennsylvania Historical Society, in Philadelphia. Pennsylvania. Dr. Tilden settled in Frederick county, Virginia, where he practiced medicine until the close of his life. Some time prior to 1824 he was ordained to the ministry of the Methodist Episcopal church, and during the agitation of the question of lay representation, he advocated the equal rights of the laity with the clergy in the legislative department of the church, for which he and other prominent members were expelled for so-called heresy. In 1872 the church admitted its error by adopting lay representation into its polity. Long before the subject of African slavery took a political shape, Dr. Tilden manumitted his slaves and sent them to Liberia with one year’s outfit. Dr. Tilden married August 9, 1784, Jane Chambers, born in York county, Pennsylvania, December 18, 1766, died May, 1827, (laughter of Joseph and Martha (McCalmont) Chambers, of York, Pennsylvania. [It goes on to list all the children and their progeny.]

For an April 2020 article on Dr. John Bell Tilden, click here. Portrait included.

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John Bell was 38 when he married Anna Tilden. She was 32, so it would have been highly plausible for her to have had more children. Was Irene Bell, one of my fifth great-grandmothers, a product of this union?

Irene Bell was born on October 20, 1764. When John Bell died in 1778 at his Bellfield Estate in Bridgewater Township, Somerset County, New Jersey. Irene would have been about 14. The fact that she is not mentioned in John Bell’s will does not seem surprising to me given her age. Note to self to try to find Anna Bell’s will. Perhaps, Irene is mentioned in it.

John Bell’s will appears on page 40 of the New Jersey, Abstract of Wills, 1670-1817 (accessible via Ancestry website, and probably Family Search). In his will, John leaves the following:

  • $500 to wife Anna Meyer Tilden Bell;
  • $200 to ex-wife Hannah Smith;
  • “a negro” to stepson John B. Tilden, who was anti-slavery (as per the Virginia biographical info above) and surely would have freed this individual;
  • “a negro woman, Delia, and her son Rory” to daughter Cornelia Bell;
  • “house and fifty acres of land in Bridgewater Township, Somerset County” to son Andrew Bell;
  • “All my lands in Earls Colne, in County of Essex, England” to friend Mark Grime of Witham, County Essex, England;
  • Residue of Estate to Anna Bell, Cornelia Bell, Andrew Bell, and John Tilden.

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Last reflections:  Irene Bell married David Wait in 1784; it had struck me before that some of the names in their family Bible appeared to be the German/Dutch variants. If Irene’s mother was from a Dutch community and had a Dutch upbringing, as Anna Meyer did, this may explain why a few names in the family Bible sound Dutch. Also, her first two sons were named David and John. Perhaps, David’s father was also David.  If Irene’s father was John Bell, the name John would have been thoroughly appropriate for a second-born son.

In one of my past posts, I’d mentioned that there was some confusion as to which side of the Revolutionary War events David Wait was on. Given what I’ve learned recently—about Perth Amboy being a Loyalist stronghold during the War—the version of him coming to America as a member of the British forces and subsequently being captured now makes the most sense. It would also make sense that David felt comfortable marrying into a Loyalist family. The War had only officially ended a little more than six months prior to their marriage.

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If you have read this far, you are probably someone interested in this family line. Please let me know if you ever find anything that corroborates (or refutes) my “theory”; I will certainly keep chipping away at this. Hopefully we can all get this figured out some day!

PS: I will say that I am very confused by the fact that John Bell had two wives and took the second one while the first was still living. I’ve been doing some reading on marriage, etc. during the pre-Revolutionary Colonial period. Divorce was very uncommon. I will have to look into this some more, but from what I’ve read thus far, the laws in place would likely only have condoned divorce in cases of abuse, adultery, cruelty, or abandonment, and would not have awarded the guilty party the opportunity to remarry while the wronged party was still alive. So was Hannah Smith the guilty party here? Did her actions lead to a divorce and John Bell’s remarriage to Captain Tilden’s widow?

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*See page 40 of the New Jersey, Abstract of Wills, 1670-1817

**Ancestry.com. New York City, Compiled Marriage Index, 1600s-1800s [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2005.

Categories: Bell, Loyalists, New Jersey, Perth Amboy, Presbyterian, Revolutionary War, Wait, Woodbridge | Tags: , , | 8 Comments

William Trewin & St. James Methodist Church in Elizabeth, NJ

William Trewin, b. 21 March 1847; son of John & Mary Ann Trewin; year unknown.

St. James Methodist Church in Elizabeth, New Jersey, celebrated its 80-year anniversary in 1957, and a church program I recently came across commemorating the occasion indicated that my great-grandfather William Trewin was one of eight people who were on the committee that agreed to found the church, which was the result of two churches (Elizabeth Avenue Methodist Episcopal Church and St. Paul Methodist Episcopal Church) coming together in a building that was acquired through an exchange with the Broad Street Baptist Church. The first service was held on April 15, 1877.

At the time of the committee meeting, October 23, 1876, my great-grandfather was 29 years old and married to his first wife Edith Fry with whom he was raising two sons, Bert and Clarence.  The commemorative program is included in this post for anyone curious about some of the history of the church during its first 80 years. Today, the building is occupied by the Haitian Bethany Baptist Church.

Image from City of Elizabeth, New Jersey, Illustrated, 1889

Categories: Elizabeth, Union Co., Methodist, New Jersey, Trewin | Tags: , , | 4 Comments

Obit for Mary Jane Woodruff (1833-1916)

Grave of Mary Jane Woodruff (and her younger brother William Henry) in First Presbyterian Churchyard, Elizabeth, NJ; Creative commons attribution license cc-by-2.5, attribution ‘R.E.H.’.

Grave of Mary Jane Woodruff (and her younger brother William Henry) in First Presbyterian Churchyard, Elizabeth, NJ; Creative commons attribution license cc-by-2.5, attribution ‘R.E.H.’.

Just a brief post today: the nearly 100-year-old obituary notice for Mary Jane Woodruff, daughter of Henry King Woodruff and Abby Winans Angus Woodruff, which was saved along with a bunch of other clippings by my grandmother.

Mary Jane (single, never married) died on November 30, 1916, at age 84, at the home of her cousin Mary Martha Angus Knowles (1846-1922) and Mary Martha’s husband Austin Fellows Knowles (d. 1924). (Their beautiful house located at 924 Elizabeth Avenue, Elizabeth, NJ, was featured in a previous post.)

Below is a tree showing how they were related. My great-grandmother Wealthy Angus Woodruff, one of Mary Martha’s sisters, was a cousin as well. She lived a little less than 3 miles away on the Woodruff family farmhouse located on Conant Street and was probably a frequent guest in the Knowles’ home.

Mary Jane was buried in the First Presbyterian Churchyard. She shares a gravestone with her younger brother William Henry Woodruff (1836-1913).

I have another Woodruff obit to share, but will do so in a separate post. Have a great day, all.

1-Jacob Baker Angus b. possibly 13 Oct 1786, c. 26 Nov 1786, First 
  Presbyterian Church, Albany, NY, d. 27 Mar 1828, Hester Street, New York 
  City, New York USA, bur. Methodist Society Cemetery, New York, NY
 +Mary Winans b. 1784, Elizabethtown, NJ, d. 27 Nov 1824, New York City, Kings 
  County, NY, bur. Stone #1249, First Presbyterian Church yard, Elizabeth, 
  Union Co., NJ
|--2-James Winans Angus b. 10 May 1810, New York City, New York USA, d. 23 
|    Dec 1862, Elizabeth, Union Co, NJ, bur. First Presbyterian Church yard of 
|    Elizabeth, NJ
|   +Wealthy Ann Jaques b. 15 Dec 1815, New York City, New York. NY, d. 7 Mar 
|    1892, At Home, 25 Reid Street, Elizabeth, Union Co., NJ, bur. First 
|    Presbyterian Church yard of Elizabeth, NJ
|  |--3-Mary Martha Winans Angus b. 20 Aug 1846, Mexico City, Mexico, d. 16 Jan 
|  |    1922, Elizabeth, Union Co, NJ
|  |   +Austin Fellows Knowles b. Mauch Chunk, Carbon Co., PA (Jim Thorpe, PA), 
|  |    d. 20 Aug 1924
|--2-Abigail Winans Angus b. 16 Jul 1812, Albany, New York, USA, d. 16 Mar 
|    1905, 1177 S. Chestnut St., Elizabeth, Union Co, NJ, bur. First 
|    Presbyterian Church yard of Elizabeth, NJ
|   +Henry King Woodruff b. 1806, New York, USA, d. 1852, Elizabeth, New 
|    Jersey, USA
|  |--3-Mary Jane Woodruff b. 1833, New York, NY, d. 30 Nov 1916, Home of Mrs. 
|  |    AF Knowles, 924 Elizabeth Ave, Elizabeth, Union, NJ, bur. First Pres. 
|  |    Church of Elizabeth, Union, NJ

Angus_MaryJaneWoodruff_obit
Knowles_house_924ElizAve


			
Categories: Angus, Death, Elizabeth, Union Co., Knowles, Obituaries, Presbyterian, Woodruff | Tags: , | 4 Comments

1882 Marriage Certificate for William Trewin and Elizabeth Sargent

My great-grandfather William Trewin’s first marriage (1868) ended tragically on December 7, 1879, when his wife Edith H. Fry died in childbirth. He remarried and his two sons Bert and Clarence became the beloved sons of my great-grandmother Elizabeth Sargent. I’d never been able to find an exact date of William and Elizabeth’s marriage until earlier this summer when I found an envelope containing the original marriage certificate. The William Sargent listed as a witness was probably Elizabeth’s father rather than her brother who shared the same name. It appears that her brother Samuel, a Methodist minister, performed the ceremony. These new details, as few as they are, combined with images we have of these four, help paint a faint picture of the happenings of July 31, 1882, in the lives of these ancestors and those closest to them.

Marriage Certificate
This is to Certify
That William Trewin of Elizabeth, NJ
and Elizabeth Sargent of Jersey City, NJ
were by me joined together in
Holy Matrimony
in Jersey City according to the ordinance of God and the Laws
of the State of New Jersey on the 31st day of July 1882
Witnesses
William Sargent
Samuel Sargent, Minister of the Gospel

Trewin_Wm_web

William Trewin (1847-1916)

Trewin_Eliz_web

Elizabeth Sargent (born Slaymaker, but name changed to Sargent when emigrated to US after the Civil War) (1854-1926)

Trewin_Wedding_Certificate_

Trewin-Sargent Marriage Certificate

William Sargent Sr. circa 1869/70

William Sargent Sr. circa 1869/70

Rev. Samuel Sargent PhD (image courtesy of Frances S. Cowles)

Rev. Samuel Sargent PhD (image courtesy of Frances S. Cowles)

Categories: Elizabeth, Union Co., Jersey City, Hudson Co., Methodist, New Jersey, Sargent, Trewin, Weddings | Tags: , | 4 Comments

Circa 1906: Two Trewins in support of immigration

Trewins_immigration_play

‘Aliens or Americans’ – cast members from a church play? Elizabeth, NJ, circa 1906

Leafing through my grandmother’s photo album, I came across this group photo showing my great-grandmother Elizabeth Sargent Trewin standing in the back on the right, and her daughter (my grandmother) Zillah Trewin in the rear on the far left, partially obscured by a gentleman’s hat. On the back, Zillah had written Mother’s class in [???] ‘Aliens or Americans.’ I was intrigued. I scanned it at high resolution to read what was written on the rear left door:

A million immigrants!
A million opportunities!
A million obligations!

Interesting! My great-grandmother, a devout Christian, was evidently a proponent of immigration (not the least bit surprising since she was an immigrant herself—from England in about 1870).

The quotation on the door appears to come from a book called Aliens or Americans (by Howard B. Grose) which was published in 1906 by the Young People’s Missionary Movement, New York. I think this is about the time this photo was taken (Elizabeth’s hair has still not gone the gray that appears in photos from the 1910s).  The peak year of European immigration was 1907, so immigration was a very hot topic at that time, and the photo may be from a play that was performed in their Elizabeth, NJ, church (St. James Methodist) to highlight the church’s duty to engage in mission work by assisting newly arrived immigrants in the resettlement process.

I’ve pulled the author’s preface and Josiah Strong’s introduction to Aliens or Americans and have included them below to give a sense of what my great-grandmother and grandmother may have been experiencing and responding to. The book is available online through The Project Gutenburg (click the link in the previous paragraph). I have not had time to read it (it’s several hundred pages long), but glancing at the table of contents, it looks like it gives plenty of interesting insight into immigration at that time, the Ellis Island experience, etc. Anyone with ancestors who immigrated in the early 1900s may find something of interest here.

Have a good day, all. As always, thanks for stopping by.

PS: For interesting info and images of immigrants from that period visit: A Look at The People Coming Through Ellis Island, 1906 – Gjenvick-Gjønvik Archives Website

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Preface

new_americans

Image from Aliens or Americans, published 1906

It is not a question as to whether the aliens will come. They have come, millions of them; they are now coming, at the rate of a million a year. They come from every clime, country, and condition; and they are of every sort: good, bad, and indifferent, literate and illiterate, virtuous and vicious, ambitious and aimless, strong and weak, skilled and unskilled, married and single, old and young, Christian and infidel, Jew and pagan. They form to-day the raw material of the American citizenship of to-morrow. What they will be and do then depends largely upon what our American Protestant Christianity does for them now.

Immigration—the foreign peoples in America, who and where they are, whence they come, and what under our laws and liberties and influences they are likely to become—this is the subject of our study. The subject is as fascinating as it is vital. Its problems are by far the most pressing, serious, and perplexing with which the American people have to do. It is high time that our young people were familiarizing themselves with the facts, for this is preëminently the question of to-day. Patriotism and religion—love of country and love of Christ—unite to urge thoughtful consideration of this great question: Aliens or Americans? One aim of this book is to show our individual responsibility for the answer, and how we can discharge it.

Immigration may be regarded as a peril or a providence, an ogre or an obligation—according to the point of view. The Christian ought to see in it the unmistakable hand of God opening wide the door of evangelistic opportunity. Through foreign missions we are sending the gospel to the ends of the earth. As a home mission God is sending the ends of the earth to our shores and very doors. The author is a Christian optimist who believes God has a unique mission for Christian America, and that it will ultimately be fulfilled. While the facts are in many ways appalling, the result of his study of the foreign peoples in our country has made him hopeful concerning their Americanization and evangelization, if only American Christians are awake and faithful to their duty. The Christian young people, brought to realize that immigration is another way of spelling obligation, must do their part to remove that tremendous IF.

These newcomers are in reality a challenge to American Christianity. The challenge is clear and imperative. Will we give the gospel to the heathen in America? Will we extend the hand of Christian brotherhood and helpfulness to the stranger within our gates? Will we Christianize, which is the only real way to Americanize, the Aliens? May this book help to inspire the truly Christian answer that shall mean much for the future of our country, and hence of the world.

The author makes grateful acknowledgment to all who have assisted by suggestion or otherwise. He has tried to give credit to the authors whose works he has used. He is under special obligation for counsel and many courtesies to Josiah Strong, one of the modern patriot-prophets who has sought to awaken Americans to their Christian duty and privilege.

Howard B. Grose. Briarcliff Manor, June, 1906.

***************************************************

Introduction

A million immigrants!
A million opportunities!
A million obligations!
This in brief is the message of Aliens or Americans?

In this country every man is an American who has American ideals, the American spirit, American conceptions of life, American habits. A man is foreign not because he was born in a foreign land but because he clings to foreign customs and ideas.

I do not fear foreigners half so much as I fear Americans who impose on them and brutally abuse them. Such Americans are the real foreigners.

Most of those who come to us are predisposed in favor of our institutions They are generally unacquainted with the true character of those institutions, but they all know that America is the land of freedom and of plenty, and they are favorably inclined toward the ideas and the obligations which are bound up with these blessings. They are open to American influence and quickly respond to a new and a better environment.

They naturally look up to us, and if with fair and friendly treatment we win their confidence, they are easily transformed into enthusiastic Americans. But if by terms of opprobrium such as “sheeny” and “dago,” we convince them that they are held in contempt, and if by oppression and fraud we render them suspicious of us, we can easily compact them into masses, hostile to us and dangerous to our institutions and organized for the express purpose of resisting all American influences.

Whether immigrants remain Aliens or become Americans depends less on them than on ourselves.

Categories: Elizabeth, Union Co., Methodist, Missionaries, Religion, Sargent, Slaymaker, Trewin | Tags: | 1 Comment

Circa 1895 photograph of Benjamin Boles and wife Mary Galbraith

Below is a photo of my great-grandfather Edward Boles‘s youngest brother Benjamin Boles, who was born on 28 February 1871 in Fingreagh, Inishmagrath, Co. Leitrim, Ireland, and Benjamin’s wife Mary Galbraith. They had one child, a son, James Newton Boles, who was born on 14 September 1898, in Tipperary. Mary died in childbirth and, from what my mother has told me, after Mary’s death, Benjamin, a shopkeeper, renounced all of his worldly possessions in order to become an evangelist in a religious movement that had recently gotten underway in Ireland.

Benjamin never remarried, as far as we know, and his son was raised by Benjamin’s sister Jane and Jane’s husband William Pearson. I don’t know when Benjamin passed away; I have a photo of him that was taken in 1943, so it was sometime after that. I imagine the photo below was taken on the occasion of Benjamin and Mary’s marriage given that her one glove is off and she appears to be wearing rings. Or perhaps on the occasion of their engagement since he is ring-less. I also have this lovely photo of Mary all by herself, and this undated photo of father and son.

Boles_Benjamin_and_Mary

Mary Galbraith and Benjamin Boles

Boles_Mary

Mary Galbraith

Ben Boles with son Newton Boles

Ben Boles with son Newton Boles (1920s?)

 

Categories: Boles, Co. Tipperary, Galbraith, Ireland, Religion | Tags: , | 4 Comments

Andrew Douglas Brodhead obituary

A. D. Brodhead

A. D. Brodhead (1853-1917)

Brodhead_AD

Obituary, probably from the Elizabeth Daily Journal, May 7, 1917

My great-grandfather Andrew Douglas Brodhead (known to many as ‘Doug’) passed away 99 years ago today, on May 6, 1917, a day that would have been his father Andrew Jackson Brodhead‘s 94th birthday had he lived long enough.

When I first started working on our family history 5-6 years ago, I knew hardly anything about Andrew Douglas. Over time, images of him surfaced, as did brief mentions of him in letters and a few articles, but I’d always wondered about the circumstances of his death. Well, the answer came during the “great garage clean-out of 2016” when I discovered this obituary; it describes the very sad circumstances of his passing.

Brief as it is, the obit speaks volumes as to what kind of man he was and offers insight into his life’s travels—from Mauch Chunk, PA, to Perth Amboy, and then to Elizabeth, with his latest place of employment being in NYC.  Father of Frank, Lewis, and Andrew. Husband of Margaret Lewis Martin. I’m sure this event was a huge shock for all the family, including all of Andrew’s siblings and their families. Thankfully, they were a close-knit bunch and looked after each other, something that makes a big difference in how we get through such things.

Categories: Brodhead, Death, Elizabeth, Union Co., Evergreen Cemetery, Hillside, NJ, Obituaries, Presbyterian | 9 Comments

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“There are two lasting bequests we can give our children: One is roots, the other is wings.” Teaching children values and giving them the opportunity to excel is essential to good parenting. However, I feel I must also provide my children (and myself) insight into the ones who came before us: our ancestors whose lives and stories have shaped us into who we are. This is my journey; these are their stories…

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