Friday, July 29, 2011

Honeymoon Photos

Our cabin in Fancy Gap, Virginia

View of the NC Piedmont from the deck

Close-up view of the Piedmont with Blue Ridge Mountains in background
Needless to say, we didn't want to leave the cabin. We called the owners to see if we could stay an extra day, but it was already booked.

Ok, this is me in front of the Carroll County Courthouse in Hillsville, Virginia. I couldn't resist a photo op in front of a courthouse. No, I didn't torture the hubby and make him go in there (only because I don't have any known ancestors there). But I did convince him that we need to go on our first married vacation next summer to Southern California so that I can attend the 2012 SCGS Jamboree!

Thursday, July 28, 2011

We Are Married!!!

Pics from Trahan/Sepulvado Wedding 
23 Jul 2011
Raleigh, Wake, North Carolina

Photo courtesy of Lindsay Kravchuk
 Bride & Groom
Rehearsal Dinner
22 Jul 2011
The Pit, Raleigh, NC

Photo courtesy of Susanna Miller

 Me with my niece, Violet

Photo courtesy of Lindsay Kravchuk

Wedding Cake

Photo courtesy of Lindsay Kravchuk

Groom's Table

Photo courtesy of Susanna Miller

Bride & Groom walking into reception hall

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Census Sunday: My Great-Great-Great Grandparents in 1930

This week I will discuss my 3rd great-grandparents who were alive in 1930. Most of them had passed away by this time, but I did have six of them living in 1930. This is my last generation that had any members alive in 1930, so I will be moving on to the 1920 census next week. (Well, actually, it will probably be in two weeks since I am getting married next weekend)!

Anna (Wise) TRAHAN

1930 U.S. census, St. Landry Parish, Louisiana, population schedule, Police Jury Ward 2, enumeration district (ED) 14, sheet 22B, dwelling 391, family 391, Pierre Richard household; digital images, ( : accessed 17 July 2011); citing NARA microfilm publication T626, roll 820.

Anna WISE was the mother of my great-great-grandfather, Oscar TRAHAN. She is one of the few Germans on my paternal grandfather's side of the family. She was born 04 Oct 1866 to Andrew WISE and Anna GREY and was baptized at Our Lady of the Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Church Point, Acadia, Louisiana. She married Theoville TRAHAN 05 Nov 1883 at St. John's Cathedral in Lafayette, Lafayette, Louisiana. She was Theoville's second wife, and they had twelve children. Anna was 14 years younger than Theoville and outlived him by quite some years. She died 01 Mar 1952 in Carencro, Lafayette, Louisiana, at the age of 85.

I'm not 100% certain the Anna in this census record is my Anna, though. She is living in the household of a young couple named Pierre and Amy RICHARD and is listed as a cousin. Her age is given as 70 years old, which assumes a birth date of 1859-1860. This is off of her known birth date from church records by 6-7 years. However, it was not unusual for an elderly person's age, particularly an illiterate elderly person's age, to be off by a few years in census records. Her relationship to Pierre is listed as cousin, and I haven't had time to research a link between my Anna and Pierre Richard. Both of this Anna's parents are listed as being born in Louisiana, but my Anna's parents were supposedly born in Germany and Ireland. Once again, though, it wasn't unusual for an elderly's person's parents' birthplaces to be incorrect in census records.

Paul Lucius PREJEAN & Marie Alicia BERNARD

1930 U.S. census, Lafayette Parish, Louisiana, population schedule, Police Jury Ward 6, enumeration district (ED) 19, sheet 18A, dwelling 335, family 338, Lecuise Prejean household; digital images, ( : accessed 17 July 2011); citing NARA microfilm publication T626, roll 798.

Lucius and Alicia were the parents of my great-great-grandmother, Virginia (Prejean) Trahan SCHENKEL. Paul Lucius PREJEAN was born 11 Feb 1866 to Ursin Theomile PREJEAN and Adenysa LEGER and baptized at St. Charles Borromeo Catholic Church in Grand Coteau, St. Landry, Louisiana. He married Marie Alicia BERNARD 22 Jan 1885 at St. Peter's Catholic Church in Carencro, Lafayette, Louisiana. He died 10 Mar 1938 in Carencro, Lafayette, Louisiana. Marie Alicia BERNARD was born 30 Dec 1863 to Honore BERNARD and Virginie LEBERT and baptized at St. John's Cathedral in Lafayette, Lafayette, Louisiana. She died 26 Mar 1949 in Lawtell, St. Landry, Louisiana. 

In 1930, Lucius and Alicia (aka Alice) were living in Police Jury Ward 6 of Lafayette Parish, Louisiana. Present-day Ward 6 is 3.5 miles south of I-10 along Ambassador Caffery Parkway in Lafayette and just east of the town of Scott. Lucius was a retired grocer. Neither Lucius nor Alicia were listed as literate or able to speak English.

Susan Rilla (Woods) BAKER
 1930 U.S. census, Las Animas County, Colorado, population schedule, Precinct 55, enumeration district (ED) 63, sheet 2B, dwelling 34, family 34, William C. Baker household; digital images, ( : accessed 17 July 2011); citing NARA microfilm publication T626, roll 245.

Rilla was the mother of my great-great-grandmother, Emmer Link (Baker) PROFFITT. She was born 06 Mar 1853 in Caldwell County, North Carolina, to John D. WOODS and Adaline Rilla JORDAN. She married James Gilbert BAKER 17 Dec 1874, possibly in North Carolina. She died 17 Nov 1938 in Wilmore, Comanche, Kansas. 

In 1930, she was living with her oldest son (and Emmer's younger brother), William Clay BAKER, and his wife, Mary (Shrader) BAKER, in Las Animas County, Colorado. Las Animas County is in southwest Colorado on the border of New Mexico. Her age is given as 73, which is off by about 3-4 years from the birth date given in her obituary (06 Mar 1853).

Mary Ellen (Molesworth) CRYSLER

1930 U.S. census, Sanilac County, Michigan, population schedule, Fremont Township, enumeration district (ED) 17, sheets 5B-6A, dwelling 114, family 116, Mary Crysler household; digital images, ( : accessed 21 June 2011); citing NARA microfilm publication T626, roll 1028.

Mary Ellen MOLESWORTH was the mother of my great-great-grandfather, Ernest CRYSLER. She was born 04 May 1858 in Dorchester, Middlesex, Ontario, Canada, to William Edward MOLESWORTH and Priscilla DEMARAY. She married George Calvin CRYSLER 30 Jun 1875 in Arkona, Lambton, Ontario, Canada. Mary died 26 May 1935 in Melvin, Sanilac, Michigan.

In 1930, she was living as a widow in Fremont Township, Sanilac, Michigan, with her son, Ernest, and two grandsons, George and Harold.

Cora Millicent (King) WEDGE

1930 U.S. census, Oakland County, Michigan, population schedule, village of Oxford, enumeration district (ED) 41, sheet 17A, dwelling 450, family 463, Joshua Wedge household; digital images, ( : accessed 17 July 2011); citing NARA microfilm publication T626, roll 1017.

Cora was the mother of my great-great-grandmother, Nellie May REYNOLDS. Cora was born 05 Nov 1874 in St. Clair County, Michigan, to Suel Alfred KING and Ardelia STRATTON. She gave birth to Nellie illegitimately 21 Oct 1890 in Elk, Sanilac, Michigan, at the age of 15. Nellie's father was listed as Douglas REYNOLDS on the birth certificate. The only Douglas REYNOLDS I have found in the area was a man who died just two months before Nellie was born on 16 Aug 1890 from consumption. It doesn't appear that he and Cora ever married. Cora eventually married Joshua WEDGE 06 Oct 1897 in Lynn, Sanilac, Michigan. Cora was the last of my great-great-great grandparents to die on 27 Feb 1964 in Pontiac, Oakland, Michigan.

In 1930, Cora and Joshua were living at 27 Stanton Road in the village of Oxford in Oakland County, Michigan. Joshua was a railroad laborer. Their youngest daughter, Thelma, was age 20 and working as a saleslady for a variety store. They had two boarder, Earl Teal and George Bice, living with them. George was a laborer of some type (it's hard to read) and Earl was an inspector for an automobile factory. 

SNGF: 16 Great-Grands and Heritage Pie

Randy Seaver of Genea-Musings has come up with another great challenge for this week’s Saturday Night Genealogy Fun:
Your mission tonight, should you decide to accept it, is to:
1) List your 16 great-great-grandparents with their birth, death and marriage data (dates and places). [Hint - you might use an Ancestral Name List from your software for this.]
2) Determine the countries (or states) that these ancestors lived in at their birth and at their death.
3) For extra credit, go make a “Heritage Pie” chart for the country of origin (birth place) for these 16 ancestors. [Hint: you could use the chart generator from Kid Zone for this.] [Note: Thank you to Sheri Fenley for the "Heritage Pie" chart idea.]
4. Tell us about it in your own blog post, in a comment to this post, or in a post on Facebook or google+.
16. Oscar TRAHAN: born 17 Oct 1889 in Rayne, Acadia, Louisiana; married 18 Jan 1908 in Scott, Lafayette, Louisiana; died 5 Aug 1962 in Lake Charles, Calcasieu, Louisiana.
17. Virginia PREJEAN: born 12 Jul 1889 in Carencro, Lafayette, Louisiana; died 3 Mar 1977 in Crowley, Acadia, Louisiana.
18. Maurice BONEAUX: born 13 Aug 1883 in Scott, Lafayette, Louisiana; married 10 Sep 1908 in Carencro, Lafayette, Louisiana; died 5 Sep 1934 in Scott, Lafayette, Louisiana.
19. Marie Alice SONNIER: born 7 Sep 1891 in Carencro, Lafayette, Louisiana; died 7 May 1970 in Vinton, Calcasieu, Louisiana.
20. John Henry MERTENA: born 11 Mar 1884 in , Franklin, Illinois; married 25 Dec 1907 in Mulhall, Logan, Oklahoma; died 28 Jan 1956 in Sulphur, Calcasieu, Louisiana.
21. Blanche WELDEN: born 31 Aug 1883 in Coffeysburg, Daviess, Missouri; died 5 Feb 1970 in Sulphur, Calcasieu, Louisiana.
22. William Harmon PROFFITT: born 12 Jul 1871 in , Jefferson, Tennessee; married 17 Dec 1896 in Chestnut Hill, Jefferson, Tennessee; died 3 Jul 1944 in Alva, Woods, Oklahoma.
23. Emmer Link BAKER: born 20 Sep 1875 in , , North Carolina; died 5 Jul 1949 in Waynoka, Woods, Oklahoma.
24. Lovell Hugh PEMBERTON: born 14 Jan 1878 in Almont, Lapeer, Michigan; married 10 Nov 1902 in Anchorville, St. Clair, Michigan; died 23 Mar 1952 in Lexington, Sanilac, Michigan.
25. Alvina Mary LESPERANCE: born 27 Nov 1881 in Anchorville, St. Clair, Michigan; died 16 Jun 1961 in Lexington, Sanilac, Michigan.
26. Ernest George CRYSLER: born 21 Oct 1877 in Forest, Lambton, Ontario, Canada; married 18 Nov 1904 in Sandusky, Sanilac, Michigan; died 8 May 1942 in Port Huron, St. Clair, Michigan.
27. Nellie May REYNOLDS: born 21 Oct 1890 in Elk, Sanilac, Michigan; died 9 May 1917 in Yale, St. Clair, Michigan.
28. Alexander CURRIE: born Nov 1837 in , Middlesex, Ontario, Canada; died 1909 in Sanilac Co, Michigan.
29. Mary RAYMOND: born Sep 1852 in , , Ontario, Canada; died 1920 in Sanilac Co., Michigan.
30. Robert PLAINE: born 20 Feb 1870 in Caradoc, Middlesex, Ontario, Canada; married abt 1891 in Euphemia, Lambton, Ontario, Canada; died 1936 in Euphemia, Lambton, Ontario, Canada.
31. Florence Minnie HILLMAN: born 23 Jul 1867 in Alvinston, Lambton, Ontario, Canada; died 9 Mar 1933 in Euphemia, Lambton, Ontario, Canada.

Here is my heritage pie with my great-great-grandpaents' birthplaces:

The pink section that represents 1/4 of the chart is my paternal grandfather's family - mostly tried and true Cajuns from Louisiana with a little French (non-Cajun), German, and Spanish mixed in.

The four sections that each represent 6.25% of the chart is my paternal grandmother's family. These were German, English, and Scottish immigrants that originally settled in Pennsylvania and Virginia and made their way further south and west over the years, eventually ending up in Oklahoma.

The other half of the chart is my maternal side of the family, representing Canada and Michigan. I didn't realize that over half of my great-great-grands on that side were born in Canada. Some of these were Scottish and English immigrants to Canada in the early to mid-1800s, and others were German and Dutch Loyalists from New York who fled to Canada around the time of the American Revolution. My Michigan folks were part French-Canadian and part English Loyalists from New York who also fled to Canada.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Aren't They Precious?

Several months ago, I blogged about the births of my niece, Violet, and my cousin, Denni, as well as the upcoming births of cousins Brynnlee and Connor. Poor Brynnlee and Connor were born during my busy season, so I never did post any updates on their births (getting complaints from the readers). So, here are updated pics on all babies (now, you complainers better not get mad because Denni and Violet get two posts).

Photo courtesy of Cousin Hope
Denni ViAnn
b. 30 Aug 2010

Violet Cecile
b. 30 Sep 2010

Photo courtesy of Cousin Paige
Brynnlee Addison
b. 26 Jan 2011

Photo courtesy of Cousin Amber
 Connor Andrew
b. 25 Feb 2011

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Treasure Chest Thursday: My Grandma

I recently bought a subscription to, which I highly recommend. I noticed that it had issues of the Lake Charles American Press from the 1950s to 1970s. This is the major newspaper in the area of southwest Louisiana where I grew up. I searched for my grandparents' names, and I found some really cool articles on my grandmother. She told me that she had been the editor of the newspaper at McNeese State University (then called McNeese State College), but it was really cool to see it on paper in the context of the time period. And I always knew she worked for the Louisiana Office of Tourism at the local tourist bureau in the town where I grew up, but it was cool to see her appointment to the position published in the newspaper. In fact, that article is where I found the address of the house where my dad grew up. The house has since been torn down, so I didn't have the exact address. These articles make me very proud of my grandmother, and I would like to share them with my readers. Enjoy!

"Sulphur Girl Is Editor of College Paper," Lake Charles (Louisiana) American-Press, 26 August 1954, p. 23, col. 3.

Miss Merlene Mertena, a Sulphur sophomore majoring in journalism at McNeese State college, is the editor-in-chief of the Contraband, the college's weekly newspaper, for the 1954-55 school year.
Elected by the paper's staff at the close of school, she assumed her new responsibility with the summer issue published August 3.
During her freshman year she served as reporter and feature editor, and in the absence of last year's editor-in-chief, Miss Carolyn Pulliam, who attended the Columbia Scholastic Press Association Convention in New York City, Miss Mertena headed the Contraband.
At Sulphur high school, Miss Mertena was editor of the school paper, the Cyclone. Prior to entering Sulphur High where she was an honor student, she attended high school in Ponca City, Okla. There she was on the staff of the school paper for two years, a member of Latin club, Biology club, the Dynamighters and worked on the annual, the Cat Tale.
Activities at McNeese include participation in the speech tournament, and membership in the [unreadable]

"Vinton Women Added to Staff," Lake Charles (Louisiana) American-Press, 5 April 1966, p. 1, col. 1.

VINTON---The appointment of two new members to the staff of the Vinton Tourist Bureau was announced this week by John Tarver, director of the Louisiana Tourist Development Commission.
Named as tourist information representatives at the Vinton station were Mrs. Benford Trahan and La Dell Jeffers, both of Vinton.
The new addition increased the staff of the Vinton bureau to three. Already employed at the station is Mrs. Jack Kimball, who has been the only representative there for the past several years.
Mrs. Trahan will be employed by the bureau as a full-time representative, while Miss Jeffers will serve as a part-time hostess and also do publicity and promotional work for the Tourist Development Commission in Southwest Louisiana.
They will assist Mrs. Kimball in greeting visitors entering Louisiana from out of state and in distributing pamphlets and other information describing points of interest to the tourists.
Before assuming their positions at the station the three women attended a two-day training seminar for Tourist Commission employees.
A native of Oklahoma, Mrs. Trahan is the former Merlene Mertena of Maplewood. She attended McNeese and was active in many campus organizations, serving at one time as editor of the school paper. The Trahans live with their four sons at 1306 Fancher St.
Miss Jeffers, a Northwestern Louisiana State College graduate with a degree in journalism and English and a former school teacher lives at 1305 East St.
I am going to have to find another copy of the newspaper on microfilm when I go back to Louisiana to see if it has a better copy of the first article. I couldn't read the rest of the sentence about the rest of the organizations my grandmother was involved with. Stay tuned next week for another great newspaper article about my grandmother and grandfather in 2006.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Wordless Wednesday: Golda Emmer (Proffitt) Curtis

Golda Emmer (Proffitt) Curtis
Sister of my great-grandmother, Hassie Cora (Proffitt) Mertena

Tombstone Tuesday: Truman Elnathan ROWLEY

Photograph by Don & Wendy McCallum
FindaGrave volunteers

FEB 4 1912
JAN 26 1993

Husband of my great-great-aunt, Eva Edna (Pemberton) ROWLEY
Allied Veterans Memorial Cemetery
Port Huron, St. Clair, Michigan

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Census Sunday: My Great-Great-Grandparents in 1930

Three weeks ago, I started a Census Sunday series, in which I featured the census records showing my great-grandparents in 1930. I skipped the next two weeks because my mom was visiting from Louisiana two weeks ago, and last week I was in Louisiana visiting. Now that I am back on track, this post will feature my great-great-grandparents in 1930.

Oscar TRAHAN and Bertha DUHON

1930 U.S. census, Harris County, Texas, population schedule, Justice Precinct 3, enumeration district (ED) 178, sheet 32A, dwelling 587, family 649, Oscar Trahan household; digital images, ( : accessed 21 June 2011); citing NARA microfilm publication T626, roll 2352.

This is my great-great-grandfather, Oscar, and his second wife, Bertha. He ran off to Texas to work for the oil refineries after he left his first wife. I cannot seem to find his first wife, Virginia PREJEAN, in 1930. They divorced around 1920. She had a child with a man named DOMINGUE in 1926, and then she married a SCHENKEL in 1932. I looked for Virginia and her son, Claude DOMINGUE, but I have not been able to find them in 1930. I also looked for her future husband, Louis SCHENKEL, but she was not with him either in 1930. I'm just going to have to order Claude's SS-5 application to see who his father was. Perhaps they were with his father in 1930. DOMINGUE is a very hard name to find in the census. It is pronounced like the word "domain," so you can imagine how it gets spelled. Oscar and Virginia's only chld, Bienvenue, was featured in my last Census Sunday post in the home of his father-in-law (see below).

Maurice BONEAUX and Marie Alice SONNIER

Maurice and Marie were the parents of my great-grandmother, Beatrice Marie BONEAUX. They were featured in the last Census Sunday post, since my great-grandparents, Beatrice and Bienvenue, were living with them.

John Henry MERTENA and Blanche WELDEN
John and Blanche were the parents of my great-grandfather, Merlen Paris MERTENA. They were featured in the last Census Sunday post, since my great-grandfather was still single and living at home with them.

William Harmon PROFFITT and Emmer Link BAKER

1930 U.S. census, Creek County, Oklahoma, population schedule, Mannford, enumeration district (ED) 24, sheet 3A, dwelling 49, family 51, William H. Proffitt household; digital images, ( : accessed 21 June 2011); citing NARA microfilm publication T626, roll 1900.

William and Emmer were the parents of my great-grandmother, Hassie Cora PROFFITT. They were living in Mannford, Creek, Oklahoma, where William was a Methodist minister. Creek is just one county west of Tulsa County. They moved around Oklahoma a lot since William was a minister. I really need to dig into church history and find out where all his appointments were located. My great-grandmother, Hassie, was not living with them. Her younger sister, Bessie, was the only child living at home in 1930. Hassie was probably boarding with a family near where she was teaching, but I haven't been able to find her yet in the 1930 census. I'm not precisely sure where she was teaching. I know that at one time between 1925 and 1930, she was teaching in Pawnee County, just one county north of Creek County.

Lovell Hugh PEMBERTON and Alvina Mary LESPERANCE

1930 U.S. census, St. Clair County, Michigan, population schedule, Kimball Township, enumeration district (ED) 20, sheets 17A-B, dwelling 391, family 394, Lovell H. Pemberton household; digital images, ( : accessed 25 December 2005); citing NARA microfilm publication T626, roll 1024

Lovell and Alvina were the parents of my great-grandfather, John Vital "Jack" Pemberton, who was already married and living with his wife and two children in Port Huron, St. Clair, Michigan, in 1930. Lovell and Alvina were living on Ditty Road in Kimball Township, not too far from Port Huron. Every census year, they seem to migrate further north. Their youngest four children were still living at home in 1930. Lovell was a blacksmith, and the oldest of the four children at home, Madeline, was a laborer in the salt plant. Morton Salt Company had large operations in Marysville, Michigan, just a few miles from Kimball Township, so I presume she worked for them.

Ernest George CRYSLER

1930 U.S. census, Sanilac County, Michigan, population schedule, Fremont Township, enumeration district (ED) 17, sheets 5B-6A, dwelling 114, family 116, Mary Crysler household; digital images, ( : accessed 21 June 2011); citing NARA microfilm publication T626, roll 1028.

Ernest was the father of my great-grandmother, Mabel CRYSLER. Mabel was already married in 1930 and living with her husband, John Vital "Jack" Pemberton, and two children in Port Huron. Ernest was a farmer living with his mother, Mary (Molesworth) CRYSLER, in Fremont Township, Sanilac, Michigan, in 1930. Ernest's first wife and Mabel's mother, Nellie REYNOLDS, died in 1917. He remarried Minnie SIBLEY in 1919. I'm a little confused because this lists Ernest as a widower, and Minnie is also listed as a widower, living with her mother, Pauline CAMPBELL, in Port Huron in 1930. It seems Ernest and Minnie must have had an unhappy union. Interestingly, Minnie was 10 years older than Ernest. Ernest's sons, George and Harold, were living with him in 1930. George was working as a farm laborer.

Alexander CURRIE and Mary RAYMOND
Alexander and Mary are not found in the 1930 census because they both died prior to 1930. They were the parents of my great-grandfather, Archie CURRIE. Alexander died in 1909, and Mary died in 1920.

Robert PLAINE and Florence Minnie HILLMAN
Robert and Flora are not found in the 1930 census because they were living in Ontario, Canada in 1930. They never immigrated to the U.S. They were the parents of my great-grandmother, Jennie Grace Christina PLAINE, who immigrated in the 1920s.