Sunday, May 20, 2012

Part VII: Arthur CHAMBERLIN - 1930 Census

Previous post in this series:
Part VI: Arthur CHAMBERLIN in the Census

In my last post about Arthur Chamberlin, I had discovered his parents and siblings in the 1910-1930 census records. Well, I had discovered one of his parents and two of his siblings in the 1930 census. I found his father, Martin, with his two oldest brothers, Edward and Thomas, living in Marine City, St. Clair, Michigan, with Martin's widowed father, Edward Felix Chamberlain. According to the 1920 census, there should have been two additional siblings, Albert and Alice. Arthur and his mother, Gertrude, were also missing. I knew from Martin's death record that he was divorced at the time of his death in 1942. I had also found a 1941 marriage record for Gertrude and her second husband, Sear Christian. At this point, although the census said Martin was married, I figured they were either separated or divorced at the time of the 1930 census. 

I searched with all sorts of search term combinations for Gertrude Chamberlain, along with Alice, Albert, and Arthur Chamberlain, but to no avail. Then one day, I decided to search for Sear Christian, just to see what he was up to in 1930. I knew from the 1941 marriage record that he was living in Detroit, so I figured I would check there first. Well, lo and behold, I found a Sere Christie living at 2267 Monroe St. in Detroit. He was listed as a die setter, and his age and place of birth (c. 1887-1888 in Belgium) were consistent with those listed on the marriage record. Guess who was living with him? Gertrude Christie (age 42) and three children: Alice (age 15 - a shoe store saleslady), Albert (age 13), and Arthur (age 7), all enumerated under the name Christie. No wonder I couldn't find them --- I was searching for Chamberlain/Chamberlin. 

1930 U.S. census, Wayne County, Michigan, population schedule, Detroit (Ward 9), enumeration district (ED) 233, sheet 11B, dwelling 144, family 17, Sere Christie household; digital images, ( : accessed 29 March 2008); citing NARA microfilm publication T626, roll 1040.
Interestingly, Sear and Gertrude were both listed as married, and she was listed as his wife. The children were all listed as Sear's children (not his stepchildren). However, I am not sure that Sear and Gertrude were actually married, since we have a 1941 marriage record, which occurred 11 years after this census was taken. They could have gotten married before 1930, divorced, and then remarried in 1941, but I doubt it. Especially since Martin was still listed as married in 1930. I have to wonder if Gertrude ran off on him with the three younger children in tow. Perhaps Martin did not want to be divorced and did not sign the divorce papers until 1941. I need to see if I can find their divorce papers, which I am assuming would have been filed in St. Clair County. It's also possible they were filed in Wayne County. 

Well, now that I had all of Arthur's siblings' information, I could start to look for them on

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