Saturday, January 26, 2013

Happy Blogoversary to Me!

Well, I started this blog four years ago today. Wow! Time flies. I wrote a lot at first, but then over the last three years, I kind of slacked off, only writing about once a month or so. I am trying very hard this year to get back on the wagon and post twice weekly. So far, so good! Thanks to all my readers for your support over the years!

Another exciting thing is that I now share my blogoversary with my cousin Brynnlee's birthday! She is two years old today. Happy Birthday, Brynnlee!
Photo courtesy of Cousin Paige

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Census Sunday: PEMBERTON in 1920

1920 U.S. census, St. Clair County, Michigan, population schedule, city of St. Clair (Ward 1), enumeration district (ED) 131, sheet 9B, dwelling 234, family 234, C. Lovell Pemberton household; digital images, ( : accessed 25 December 2005); citing NARA microfilm publication T625, roll 795.

Continuing in the Census Sunday post series, we find my great-great-grandparents, Lovell and Alvina (Lesperance) Pemberton, living at 700 N. Vine St. in St. Clair, St. Clair, Michigan. Lovell was listed as a 41-year-old blacksmith in a factory. Alvina was age 36. Both were listed as born in Michigan.

All children who survived to adulthood were living at home:

Nellie, age 14
John, age 12 (my great-grandfather)
Madaline, age 8
Lovell, age 4
Eva, age 3
Alvina, age 9 months

Sadly, Lovell and Alvina lost four children between 1910 and 1920. Only six of their thirteen children lived to adulthood.

Their fourth child, Charlotte Agnus Pemberton, died 25 Sep 1910 in Mount Clemens, Macomb, Michigan. She was just four months old and died from cholera. 

Their oldest child, Gilbert Lowell Pemberton, died 21 Jun 1913 in Mount Clemens. He died from acute endocarditis at the age of ten. Acute endocarditis is the inflammation of the inner layer of the heart. Rheumatic fever is not listed as a contributory cause of death on his death certificate, but according to Wikipedia, it is the cause of many cases of endocarditis. The death certificate gives his length of illness as six days.

Their sixth child, Myrtie Elva Pemberton, died 15 Sep 1914 in Mount Clemens from intestinal and stomach indigestion. Interestingly, the contributory cause of death was listed as "bottle-fed infant." Did formula in the early 1900s cause the deaths of infants? I need to do some research about the invention of baby formula. Like baby Charlotte four years earlier, she was only four months old when she died. 

Their ninth child, Orville Joseph Pemberton, died 23 Mar 1919 in Marine City, St. Clair, Michigan, from spinal meningitis. He was 11 months old. 

After the 1920 census, Alvina and Lovell lost three more children. 

Their 11th and 12th children were twin boys, James and Joseph, born 22 Mar 1921 in St. Clair. James died immediately on the same day that he was born. His cause of death is given as general anasaica. I'm not sure if the death certificate should have read "anasarca" instead, as I can't find a definition of "anasaica." Anasarca is a swelling of the skin due to an effusion of fluid into the extracellular space. It's usually caused by kidney or liver failure. Joseph died at the age of two on 14 Aug 1923 in Marysville, St. Clair, Michigan, from pneumonia. 

Their 13th child, Adele Christine Pemberton, died at the age of five on 28 Dec 1928 in Port Huron, St. Clair, Michigan. Strep throat is given as her cause of death, but some family notes that I obtained from my uncle several years ago state that a man named Dr. Burch gave her the wrong dose of drugs. I need to look into that a little further. 

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Treasure Chest Thursday: John Peter Pemberton Separation Qualification Record


Name: John P. Pemberton
Army serial no: AF16 194 223
Grade: Sgt
Social security no.: Unknown
Permanent mailing address: 729-12 St., Port Huron, Mich.
Date of entry into active service: 28 Sep 1946
Date of separation: 28 Jun 1949
Date of birth: 18 Nov 1928
Place of separation: Separation Center, Camp Stoneman, Calif.
Military Occupational Assignments:
Months: 2
Grade: Pvt
Military occupational specialty: AF Basic 521
Months: 2
Grade: Pvt
Military occupational specialty: Student 629
Months: 24
Grade: Sgt
Military occupational specialty: Automotive mechanic 2nd echelon 014
Summary of military occupations:
Automotive mechanic second echelon --- Was stationed in Japan with an airforce unit as a[n] automotive mechanic second echelon. Inspected and performed first and second echelon orginization maintenance service and repairs on gasoline powered military motor vehicles.
Military education:
Airforce School 10 weeks automotive mechanic course Lowry Field, Colorado.
Civilian education:
Highest grade completed: 11th grade
Degrees or diplomas: none
Year left school: 1946
Name and address of last school attended: St. Stephen High School, Port Huron, Mich.
Major courses of study: Academic
Other training or schooling: None
Civilian occupations:
Student High School --- Attended St. Stephaen High School at Port Huron, Michigan
Studied history, English, mathematics, Civics, and Biology. 1943 to 1946.
Additional information:
Completed high school levl 25 May 1948

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Census Sunday: PROFFITT in 1920

Well, it has been one year since my last Census Sunday post. I know, crazy, right? Well, there's no time like the present to get back on the blogging wagon. This post features the family of my great-grandmother, Hassie Cora Proffitt, in 1920. Hassie is the mother of  my paternal grandmother. In 1920, we find Hassie with her parents and siblings in Gage, Ellis, Oklahoma.

1920 U.S. census, Ellis County, Oklahoma, population schedule, Rock Township, Gage, enumeration district (ED) 65, sheet 3A, dwelling 48, family 53, Wm. H. Proffitt household; digital images, ( : accessed 13 January 2013); citing NARA microfilm publication T625, roll 1463.

This family is always fun to track through the census records because Hassie's father, William Harmon Proffitt, was a Methodist minister. This means the family moved around a lot as he was appointed at different churches. Ellis County is in northwest Oklahoma on the New Mexico border. The family was living on Walnut Street. William H. Proffitt, was a 48-year-old Methodist Episcopal pastor born in Tennessee. His, wife, Emmer, was age 44 and born in North Carolina. The children, all except the oldest born in Oklahoma, were as follows:
  • Foster N. Proffitt, age 21, born in Tennessee, railroad laborer
  • James G. Proffitt, age 18, teacher at a country school
  • Goldie Proffitt, age 17
  • John W. Proffitt, age 16, newsboy
  • Cathrine Proffitt, age 13
  • Hassie Proffitt, age 11
  • Bessie Proffitt, age 7
I decided to see if I could find any information on the United Methodist church in Gage, Oklahoma, or if I could find a street view on Google Maps for Walnut St. Sure enough, when I put in Walnut St. at Google Maps, a picture of the Methodist church appeared.

View Larger Map

Then I decided to see if I could find the Methodist church in Mannford, Creek, Oklahoma, where the family was found in 1930 in northeastern Oklahoma. It is kind of hidden by the trees, but you can still see it. 

View Larger Map

Saturday, January 12, 2013

SNGF: Semi-Random Research

Randy from Genea-Musings has sent us on a mission again. Since I haven't participated in quite awhile in Saturday Night Genealogy Fun, and my goal is to blog more, I figured I would get back into the swing of participating.

Your mission, should you decide to accept it (cue the Mission Impossible! music) is to:

1)  We're going to do a little bit of Semi-Random Research tonight...

2)  Go to your family tree database of choice (you know, like RootsMagic, Reunion, Ancestry Member Tree), and determine who the very last person on your list of names is.

3)  What do you know about this person based on your research?  It's OK to do more if you need to - in fact, it's encouraged!

4)  How are you related to this person, and why is s/he in your family tree?

5)  Tell us about it in a blog post of your own, in a comment to this blogp ost, or in a Facebook Status post or Google+ Stream post.
The very last person in my RootsMagic database is Alice Zimmerman. Alice was the wife of my second cousin 3x removed, George L. Avers. George was the son of Albert S. Avers and Elizabeth M. Phelps. Elizabeth was the daughter of Joseph Putnam Phelps and Agnes Emma Pemberton. Agnes was the sister of my 3x great-grandfather, John Pemberton. 

Alice Zimmerman was born 27 Jan 1898 and died 3 Apr 1982 in Port Huron, St. Clair, Michigan. George and Alice married in 1967. They married late in life, and no children are mentioned in George's obituary. My source for Alice's birth and death date/place is the "Michigan Deaths, 1971-1996" at My source for the marriage date is George's obituary. Looks like I need to further research in death and marriage records to find more info. 

The very last person in my old Family Tree Maker database is William Young. William was supposedly my 6th great-uncle. My notes say he was born abt 1731 and died abt Dec 1811. Do you really want to know my source? You guessed it....unsourced family trees on the Internet. Do you see why I've abandoned this database? He was supposedly the son of Peter Young and Anna Eve Fox. William's brother, Peter Warren Young, is supposedly my 6th great-grandfather. Peter Warren Young supposedly married Anna Margaret Serviss, and they had a daughter named Elizabeth Young. Elizabeth supposedly married my 5x great-grandfather, Jacob Crysler. Obviously, I don't have much faith in this tree. The only thing I know for sure on this line is that my great-grandmother was Mabel Ellen Crysler, her father was Ernest George Crysler, and his father was George Calvin Crysler. From there, more research needs to be done.

Friday, January 11, 2013

New Discovery: Wesley Finkle

I recently discovered that images of the 1884 census for the State of Michigan are available for free from the website. In fact, they even have a searchable database to locate specific images. As I was writing my recent blog post on William Finkle, I decided to take a gander at the census for the Finkle family.

Sure enough, David and Eliza (Pemberton) Finkle were not too hard to find. I figured they would be in Clay, St. Clair, Michigan.

In the household of 1880, there were six children enumerated, and in 1900, there was one more son, which made for a total of seven children. These were the only seven children ever mentioned in family obituaries, so I figured I had found them all. Curiously, at the bottom of the 1884 census record, there was a seventh child literally called "(No Name)." This child was a one-year-old baby boy. All six children from the 1880 census had been accounted for on this 1884 census record. According to the St. Clair County birth registers, the seventh child was not born until 1885. So who was this nameless baby?

I decided to double check the "Michigan Deaths, 1867-1897" database at Perhaps I could find a death record, though I had my doubts because I was positive I had already searched this database for the Finkle surname. Lo and behold, there was a death record! It was right there in plain sight. No finagling of surnames or parents' names needed to get the right search results.

That little stinker! Wesley Finkle was there all along. According to the death record, Wesley Finkle died on 20 Nov 1887 from spinal disease (poor baby!) in Marine City, St. Clair, Michigan. He was the son of David and Eliza Finkle. And he was 4 years old, making him the right age to be the one-year-old baby boy in 1884. I'm not sure if spinal disease means spinal meningitis or spina bifida. I also wonder why he didn't have a name in 1884 if he was already a year old? I could understand if he was only a few days old. Makes me think he may have been born disabled and perhaps they didn't name him right away, knowing that he was going to die. Even so, would they really wait a year to name him? Or is it more likely the census taker and the death record are off on his age by about a year? Maybe that is more reasonable.

Lesson Learned: Don't forget to search for the death and birth records of children who were born and who also died between 1880 and 1900. Thank goodness for those of us lucky to have state census records in the intervening years.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Wordless Wednesday: Pippi

This is a pic of my Pippi (maternal grandfather) boiling crawfish. I believe it was taken when they lived in a trailer park in New Iberia, Louisiana. His birthday is tomorrow, January 10! Miss you, Pip!

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

William Finkle (1866-1948)


David Finkle (1844-1915)
Eliza Jane (Pemberton) Finkle (1844-1927)
Sarah Maria (Pemberton) Morrison Jones (1851-1941)
As I've been cleaning up the source citations and events in my RootsMagic database, I've been blogging about the individuals and families that I've cleaned up. Recently, I've blogged about David Finkle and Eliza Jane Pemberton. Eliza was the younger sister of my third-great-grandfather, John Pemberotn. David and Eliza had seven children. William Finkle, the subject of this post, was their oldest child.

William first appears in the 1870 census as a four-year-old child in the home of his maternal grandparents, Jeremiah and Susannah (Jermyn) Pemberton, in the village of Algonac, St. Clair, Michigan.

1870 U.S. census, St. Clair County, Michigan, population schedule, Clay Township, Algonac, p. 12, dwelling 94, family 94, Jeremiah Pemberton household; digital images, ( : accessed 23 December 2007); citing NARA microfilm publication M593, roll 698.

His parents, David and Eliza, were also enumerated in the household. This puts William's birth date around 1866 and gives his birthplace as Michigan. This means he was born approximately one year after his parents married on 27 Apr 1865 in Clay Township, St. Clair, Michigan.

William appears again in 1880, this time in the household of his parents in Clay Township.

1880 U.S. census, St. Clair County, Michigan, population schedule, Clay Township, enumeration district (ED) 370, p. 17, dwelling 98, family 98, David Finkle household; digital images, ( : accessed 27 December 2007); citing NARA microfilm publication T9, roll 604.

His age and birthplace is consistent with that in the 1870 census. He was a 14-year-old farm laborer born in Michigan.

In the 1884 State of Michigan Census, William appears as an 18-year-old mariner living at home with his parents in Clay Township.

1884 State of Michigan Census, St. Clair County, Clay Township, p. 38, dwelling 151, family 162, David Finkle household; digital images, Seeking Michigan ( : accessed 7 January 2013); citing Archives of Michigan microfilm record group 80-98, roll 2070.
Again, his birth date and place are consistent (c. 1866 in Michigan) with the 1870 and 1880 census records.

The 1894 State of Michigan Census seems to be off on the age by a couple of years for most of the members of David Finkle's household.

1894 State of Michigan Census, St. Clair County, Marine City, Ward 3, p. 42-43, dwelling 166, family 175, David Finkle household; digital images, Seeking Michigan ( : accessed 7 January 2013); citing Archives of Michigan microfilm record group 80-98, roll 2073.
William is enumerated as a 26-year-old single sailor at the home of his parents on Plank Road in Marine City, St. Clair, Michigan. His birthplace is again given as Michigan. His age, however, suggests a birth date of c. 1868. The record was faint and hard to read, however, so it is slightly possible that I read his age incorrectly.

William Finkle married Mary Bronson on 15 Jan 1896  in Detroit.

Michigan Department of Vital Records, Marriage Registers, 1896, Wayne County, p. 371, no. 20161, Finkle-Bronson; "Michigan Marriages, 1868-1925," digital images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 7 June 2008).
Name of groom: Wm. Finkle
Age: 28
Race: White
Residence: Detroit
Birthplace: Michigan
Occupation: Sailor
Father: David Finkle
Mother: Eliza Pemberton
Times previously married: [blank - seems to imply "none"]
Name of bride: Mary Bronson
Age: 23
Residence: Detroit
Birthplace: Iowa
Father: Marshal Bronson
Mother: Unknown
Times previously married: [blank - seems to imply "none"]
Date of license: 15 Jan 1896
Date of marriage: 15 Jan 1896
Place of marriage: Detroit
Officiant: H.L. Schellenberg, J.D.
Witness: Jerry Finkle, Detroit
Witness: Plum B. Schellenberg, Detroit
William's age is given as 28 and his birthplace as Michigan. This suggests a birth date of c. 1867 (possibly early January 1868). Mary was age 23 and born in Iowa, which suggests a birth date of c. 1872. Both are listed as residents of Detroit. William was a sailor, which agrees with his occupation in the 1884 and 1894 census records. His parents are listed as David Finkle and Eliza Pemberton. Mary's father is given a Marshal Bronson, but no mother is given for Mary. One of the witnesses appears to be William's younger brother, Jeremiah "Jerry" Finkle, who was also residing in Detroit. The other witness appears to be a relative of the officiant who performed the marriage. The 1895 Detroit city directory states that Harry L. Schellenberg was a Justice of the Peace who lived at 76 Forest Ave. E. His business was located at 39 Congress E. According to the 1900 census, Harry L. Schellenberg was a lawyer, and Plum Schellenberg was his wife.

I have not found William in the 1895 or 1896 Detroit city directories at, but I have found a Matie Bronson, a maid residing at 17 Ledyard in 1895. The homeowner at this address in 1895 was Charles Reaume, who owned a real estate business.

William and Mary (Bronson) Finkle were enumerated on 12 Jun 1900 in Clay, St. Clair, Michigan.

1900 U.S. census, St. Clair County, Michigan, population schedule, Clay Township, enumeration district (ED) 78, sheet 4A, dwelling 74, family 74, William Finkle household; digital images, ( : accessed 29 December 2007); citing NARA microfilm publication T623, roll 741.
They did not have any children. William was listed as a 33-year-old sailor born in Apr 1867. Mary was age 25 and born in Mar 1875. Both birthplaces are given as Michigan. The birth date and place for Mary are both off from the 1896 marriage record.

I cannot seem to find William and Mary in 1910. In January 1920, they were again enumerated in Clay Township.

1920 U.S. census, St. Clair County, Michigan, population schedule, Clay Township, enumeration district (ED) 97, sheet 8A, dwelling 188, family 191, William Finkle household; digital images, ( : accessed 29 December 2007); citing NARA microfilm publication T625, roll 795.
This time Mary is listed as "Margaret." William was a 52-year-old sailor born in Michigan. This puts his birth date around 1867. Margaret was age 50 and also born in Michigan. This puts her born around 1869. Again, her age and birth place do not match those found on her marriage record nor the age given in the 1900 census. No children were enumerated.

In April 1927, William was listed as residing in Tashmoo Park in his mother's obituary. Tashmoo Park was actually an amusement park that opened in 1897 and closed in 1951. It was located on Harsen's Island in the St. Clair Flats at the northern end of Lake St. Clair. There were several steamships that sailed between Detroit and Port Huron that stopped at Tashmoo Park. I have to wonder if William possibly worked for one of these steamships, since he was a sailor. Harsen's Island is part of Clay Township and is where the David Finkle family lived for the 1883 and 1885 county directories.

William and "Matie" Finkle were enumerated on 25 Apr 1930 in Clay Township.

1930 U.S. census, St. Clair County, Michigan, population schedule, Clay Township, enumeration district (ED) 7, sheet 10A, dwelling 249, family 252, William Finkle household; digital images, ( : accessed 29 December 2007); citing NARA microfilm publication T626, roll 1024.
They owned their home, which was valued at $3,500. According to the inflation calculator, this is valued at approximately $48,250 today. Again, there were no children. William was a 63-year-old (born c. 1867) sailor on the Great Lakes. Matie was 59 and born in Michigan. This suggests a birth date of c. 1871. William's birthplace was also Michigan.

In 1940, we once again find William and Matie in Clay Township.

1940 U.S. census, St. Clair County, Michigan, population schedule, Clay Township, enumeration district (ED) 7, sheet 18B, household 442, William Finkle household; digital images, ( : accessed 18 July 2012); citing NARA microfilm publication T627, roll 1815.
This time their home was valued at $1,500, which would be almost $24,700 today. Not sure why the price difference existed between 1930 and 1940. Perhaps they moved between 1930 and 1940, but all the neighbors from 1930 are still close by and their home values seem to have dropped as well. Perhaps Tashmoo Park was on its downward swing. William was a 74-year-old farmer (guess he had given up his sailing days). This puts him born about 1866 in Michigan. Matie was age 70 (born c. 1870) and born in Michigan.

Six years later, Mary "Matie" (Bronson) Finkle died from chronic myocarditis and generalized arteriosclerosis (i.e. heart disease) on 12 Sep 1946 in Clay Township. A transcription of her death record from the St. Clair County Clerk:
Decedent: Mary Finkele
Date of death: 12 Sep 1946
Place of death: Clay
Sex: F
Race: W
Marital Status: Married
Spouse: William
Cause of death: chronic myocarditis, generalized arteriosclerosis
Occupation: Housewife
Age: 76 y, 0 m, 18 d
Birthplace: Michigan
Father: Marshall Brunson
Father's birthplace: Michigan
Mother: Unknown
Mother's birthplace: Unknown
Source: St. Clair County, Michigan, Death Book 9: 151, Mary Finkele, 1946; County Clerk, Port Huron.

Her age is given as 76 years, 0 months, and 18 days. This would give her a birth date of 24 Aug 1870. Her birthplace is given as Michigan. So where in the heck did her birthplace of Iowa come from on her marriage record to William? This time her father is given as Marshall Brunson (slightly different spelling), born in Michigan.

I also found her obit when I visited the St. Clair County Library in Port Huron, Michigan, in 2009.

"Mrs. William Kinkele," obituary, The Port Huron (Michigan) Times Herald, 12 September 1946, p. 22.
Harsen's Island, Sept. 12 -- Mrs. Mary Finkele, 76, wife of William Finkele, died early today in her home here after a long illness.
She was born Aug. 24, 1870 in Wyandotte, Mich., and has lived here for 50 years.
Mr. Finkele is survived by her husband.
The remains are in the Gilbert & Son funeral home.
Funeral arrangements are not completed.
Her birthplace here is given as Wyandotte, Michigan, just outside of Detroit. Her birth date in the obit agrees with the one in the death record.

Almost two years to the day later, William Finkle died from cerebral thrombosis (blood clot) and senility on 11 Sep 1948 in Port Huron, St. Clair, Michigan, at the home of his younger brother, Roy.
Decedent: William Finkle
Date of death: 11 Sep 1948
Place of death: Port Huron
Sex: M
Race: W
Marital Status: Widowed
Cause of death: cerebral thrombosis, senility
Age: 82 y, 5 m, 24 d
Birthplace: Michigan
Occupation: Sailor
Father: David Finkle
Father's birthplace: Michigan
Mother: Eliza Pemberton
Mother's birthplace: Michigan
Source: St. Clair County, Michigan, Death Book 9: 309, William Finkle, 1948; County Clerk, Port Huron.

His age of 82 years, 5 months, and 24 days gives him a birth date of 17 Mar 1866.

"William Finkle," obituary, The Port Huron (Michigan) Times Herald, 13 September 1948, p. 10.
The obit gives his birthplace as Pointe Tremble. The official name is Pointe aux Tremble. This is an unincorporated area of Clay Township near Pearl Beach. The obit does not mention him being a sailor, but it does mention that he was known in the area as a fisherman and hunter. I have been looking for the death date of his sister, Eva, and I just noticed that she is not listed as a survivor. Perhaps she died between 1940 (she is in the 1940 census) and 1948. Oaklawn Cemetery is located in Clay Township. According to an online transcription, Mary is buried there too (her obit said funeral arrangements were not finalized). Trinity Methodist Church (today called Trinity United Methodist Church) is located at 424 Smith St. in Algonac. I have not seen this church referenced in any other family member obituaries. No children were listed as survivors in the obituary. It does not appear that William and Mary/Matie had any children.

One other source that I still need to record in my database is a new source that I've found. It's a book called Saginaw Bay Waterfowl Hunting and Decoy Carvers by William A. Stout. Apparently, William Finkle and his brother Hayes were duck decoy carvers. I do not know the source, but his birth date is given as 18 May 1866. The author apparently had one source who knew William "Bill" Finkle during his lifetime. This source stated that Bill lived a simple life and did not own a car and raised his own vegetables for sale to others. He drove Bill around to sell his vegetables. The book states that after his sailing days, Bill earned a modest living by hunting and fishing and selling his duck decoys and fishing lures. Bill lived on Harsens Island throughout his life.

In summary:
  • William Finkle was the oldest child of David and Eliza (Pemberton) Finkle.
  • He was likely born 17 Mar 1866 in Pointe aux Tremble, St. Clair, Michigan.
  • He was a sailor. He became a hunter and fisherman after he retired from sailing.
  • He married Mary "Matie" Bronson/Brunson 15 Jan 1896 in Detroit.
  • Mary was likely born 24 Aug 1870 in Wyandotte, Wayne, Michigan. She was the daughter of Marshall Bronson/Brunson.
  • William and Mary lived in Tashmoo Park on Harsen's Island (Clay Township) for most of their married life.
  • It does not appear that William and Mary had any children.
  • Mary died 12 Sep 1946 in Clay Township, St. Clair, Michigan.
  • William died 11 Sep 1948 in Port Huron, St. Clair, Michigan.
  • William and Mary are buried in Oaklawn Cemetery in Clay Township.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Treasure Chest Thursday: John Peter Pemberton Military Discharge

Name: John P. Pemberton
Serial no: AF16 194 223
Rank: Sgt
Arm or service: AF
Comp & terms of service: AF 3 yrs
Organization: 6141 ST AFBU MAO APO 547
Date of separation: 28 Jun 49
Place of separation: Sep C CP Stoneman Calif
Permanent mailing address: 729 12 St Port Huron Mich
Date of birth: 18 Nov 28
Place of birth: Port Huron Mich.
Address from which employment will be sought: See 9 [permanent mailing address]
Color eyes: Blue
Color hair: brn
Height: 5 7
Weight 148
No. Depend: 0
Race: white
Marital status: single
U.S. Citizen: yes
Civilian occupation and no: Student HS Acad X-02
Date of enlistment: 28 Sep 46
Date of entry into active service: 28 Sep 46
Place of entry into service: Selfridge Fld Mich
Selective service data:
County and state: St. Clair Mich
Home address at time of entry into service: See 9
Military occupational specialty and no: Auto Mech 014
Military qualification and date: Carbine 144
Battles and campaigns: None
Decorations and citations: World War II Victory Medal, Army of Occupation Medal Japan
Wounds received in action: None
Latest immunization dates: Smallpox May 49
Service outside continental U.S. and return:
Date of departure: 4 Jun 47
Destination: APT
Date of arrival: 16 Jun 47
Date of departure: 6 Jun 49
Destination: USA
Date of arrival: 18 Jun 49
Prior service: None
Continental service: 8m 16d
Foreign service: 2y 15d
Reason and authority for separation: AR 615 365 27 Oct 48 C of G Par 1 Pets & DA Cir 335/48
Service schools attended: AF Sch 10 wks auto mech course Lowry Fld Colo
Education: Grammar 8 yrs, High school 3 yrs, College 0 yrs
Pay Data:
Longevity for pay purposes: 2y 9m 1d
Mustering out pay total: $300
This payment: $100
Soldier deposits: None
Travel pay: $28.85
Total amount, name of disbursing officer: R H Hansen Lt Col FD $528.38
Insurance Notice:
Kind of insurance: Nat. Serv.
How paid: Allotment
Effective date of allotment discontinuance: 30 Jun 49
Date of next premium due: 31 Jul 49
Premium due each month: $6.40
Intention of veteran to continue
Remarks: Blood Group A
Lapel button issued 111 109

This is the military discharge paper for my maternal grandfather, John Peter Pemberton.  I found this document at the home of my maternal grandmother. He enlisted in the Army on 28 Sep 1946 at Selfridge Field in Macomb County, Michigan. He was 17 years old at the time and lived at 729 12th Street in Port Huron, St. Clair, Michigan. He spent 8 months of his service in the continental U.S. and two years in Japan. He attended a 10-week auto mechanic training course at Lowry Field in Colorado. He was discharged on 28 Jun 1949 at Camp Stoneman in Pittsburg, Contra Costa, California. I am still trying to figure out exactly where he served in Japan. His military organization is given as 6141 ST AFBU MAO APO 547, which may give me a clue with a little more research.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Wordless Wednesday: Beulah

This is a pic of my maternal grandparents, Clifford Robert Drouillard and Violet Mae (Currie) Pemberton Drouillard. It was taken around 2005-2007 in Beulah, Michigan. They were visiting my great-uncle, William "Bill" Pemberton. Beulah is in the northwestern part of the state on Crystal Lake. I really like the background in this picture. The barn reflection in the window and the landscaping make for a very pretty backdrop.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

David Finkle (1844-1915)


Eliza Jane (Pemberton) Finkle (1844-1927)
Sarah Maria (Pemberton) Morrison Jones (1851-1941)
I've been cleaning up source citations and events in my RootsMagic database, and I have been trying to blog about families as I clean them up. Previously, I wrote about the family of my 3rd great-grandfather's younger sister, Eliza Jane (Pemberton) Finkle. I alluded to the fact that I had done some additional research on Eliza's husband, David. This post is going to be about the research I've done on David's origins.

David and Eliza were married on 27 Apr 1865 in Clay Township, St. Clair, Michigan.

St. Clair County, Michigan, Marriage Book 2: 476, Fincle-Pemberton, 1865; FHL microfilm 976,870.
Recorded July 4th 1865
Geo. F. Collins, Clerk
State of Michigan
St. Clair County
I hereby certify that on the 27th day of April 1865, at Clay, I did join in marriage, David Fincle of this township of Clay aged 20 years, and Eliza Pemberton of the same place aged 19 years, in presence of two witnesses (to wit) Sylvester Sumners and Isaac Combs of Clay, St. Clair County Mich.
Isaac Klein
Justice of the Peace

According to the marriage record, David was 20 and Eliza was 19. This would suggest a birth date April 1844 and April 1845 for David. Witnesses were Sylvester Sumners and Isaac Coombs. Isaac Coombs was a farmer and the stepfather of Eliza's future brother-in-law, Joseph Phelps. Sylvester was a laborer who was born about 1820 in New York (1870 census - Clay, St. Clair, Michigan). I don't know of any relation between Sylvester and David or Sylvester and Eliza. The marriage was performed by Isaac Klein, Justice of the Peace.

When I was at the courthouse in St. Clair County in 2007, I found David's death record. Below is a transcription:

Decedent: David Finkel
Date of death: 1 Apr 1915
Place of death: Pt. Huron
Sex: M
Race: W
Marital Status: Married
Age: 70 y, 5 m, 1 d
Cause of death: Mitral Insufficiency
Birthplace: Mich.
Occupation: Retired
Father: John Finkel
Father's birthplace: Holland
Mother: Don't know
Mother's birthplace: Don't know
 Source: St. Clair County, Michigan, Death Book 5: 93, David Finkel, 1915; County Clerk, Port Huron.

David died from mitral insufficiency on 01 Apr 1915 in Port Huron, St. Clair, Michigan. According to the death record, he was 70 years, 5 months, and 1 day at the time of his death. This would put his date of birth as 31 Oct 1844. His birthplace is given as Michigan. His father is listed as John Finkel, who was born in Holland. His mother's name and birthplace was not known.

I've also found his state death record online at the Seeking Michigan website. It has slightly different information than the county register. His age at death is the same, but it states his birth date as 10 Oct 1844. It gives his place of death as 1733 Stone St. in Port Huron. From WWI draft registrations of David's sons, we know this was the family home two years later in 1917. He was buried 03 Apr 1915 at Lakeside Cemetery in Port Huron. His  name is actually spelled "Finkle" rather than "Finkel" on the sate version of the death certificate. The informant was Mrs. David Finkle of Port Huron, Mich. His occupation is given as Ret. Farmer.

After finding his death record, I decided to search for David in the census records in 1850 and 1860, when he should have appeared in the household of his parents

I found a David Finkle, age 15, in 1860 living with David and Jenny Combs in Clay Township. He was of the right age to be my David Finkle. David Combs was an 82-year-old farmer who was born in Vermont. His wife, Jenny, was 80 years old and was also born in Vermont. Obviously, David and Jenny were too old to be his parents, and they did not share his surname. Could they be his maternal grandparents? Perhaps he was named after his grandfather. At this point, I started to wonder if David Combs had any relation to Isaac Coombs, the witness to David Finkle's marriage record and the stepfather of his wife's brother-in-law, Joseph Phelps. Oh, and did I mention that my 3rd great-grandfather, John Pemberton, married a woman named Mary Ann Coombs in 1865?

I did not immediately find a David Finkle in the 1850 census, but I did find Isaac Combs in the 1870 census.  

Isaac and his wife, Mary A. Combs, were living in Clay Township. Isaac, a farmer, was age 60 and was listed as born in Maine. Mary was age 61 and was listed as born in England. Also in the household was Janette Combs, age 90, born in Vermont. Was Janette the same person as Jenny Combs in 1860? Her age and birthplace match exactly. Furthermore, I cannot seem to find David and Jenny Combs in 1870. Was Janette the mother of Isaac? If Janette was the same person as Jenny, and she was Isaac's mother and David Finkle's maternal grandmother, then this means that David Finkle's mother and Isaac Combs were siblings.

As I was combing the marriage records for St. Clair County on microfilm at the local Family History Center, I came across a record for a John Finkle, age 34 of Clyde Township, and Nancy H. Comb, age 22 of Clay Township. 

They were married 15 Nov 1840 in Clyde at the home of David Donaldson. The witnesses were David and Clarissa Donaldson. Could these be David Finkle's parents? They were married just four years before his birth. I have not found John and Nancy in any census records.

I also found Isaac Combs' death record at 

Date of death: May 5, 1879
Name: Isaac Coombs
Sex: Male
Race: White
Marital Status: Married
Age: 71
Place of death: Clay
Cause of death: Old Age and General Debility
Place of birth: Maine
Occupation: Farmer
Father: Unknown
Mother: Unknown
Parents' Residence: Unknown
Date of record: May 25, 1880
Unfortunately, it does not list his mother or father.

I eventually found a David "Coon" living in Clay Township in 1850 with David and Jenett "Coon."

He was age 5 and born in Michigan. This is in line with the age and birthplace of my David Finkle. The elder David Coon was listed as age 72 and born in Massachusetts. This is in line with the age of the David Combs, age 82, in 1860. His birthplace in 1860 was given as Maine, but at one point, Maine was part of Massachusetts. Jenett is listed as age 72, just two years off from Jenny Combs in 1860 and Janette Combs in 1870. Jenett's birthplace is given as Vermont. There is a Marie Coon, age 16, born in New York, also in the household. Perhaps this is another grandchild of David and Janette/Jenny Combs.

In 1840, I found a David Coombs living in Clay Township.

In the household is one male age 60-69 and one male age 20-29. There is one female age 20-29 and one female age 60-69. Presumable the older male and female are David and Jenny/Janette. Could the female age 20-29 be Nancy H. Comb? She was 22 years old in November 1840 when she married John Finkle. 

I need to research in probate records in St. Clair County to see if John Finkle or David Combs left a will. Perhaps the will or probate file would list David Finkle's relationship to the Combs family. I also need to look at land records for John and David. To sum up my research thus far:

  • David Finkle married Eliza Pemberton 27 Apr 1865 in Clay Township.
  • Isaac Coombs witnessed the marriage of David Finkle and Eliza Pemberton.
  • David Finkle died 01 Apr 1915 in Port Huron, St. Clair, Michigan.
  • David's date of birth on his death certificate is stated as 10 Oct 1844, but calculates to be 31 Oct 1844 based on his age at death.
  • David was likely born in Michigan. 
  • David's father is listed as John Finkle, born in Holland, on his death certificate.
  • David Finkle, age 15, lived with David and Jenny Combs in Clay Township in 1860.
  • David and Jenny are too old to be David's parents. Could be grandparents.
  • Janette Combs was living with Isaac Combs in 1870. She was the same age and had the same birthplace as Jenny Combs in 1860. 
  • David "Coon," age 5, lived with David and Jenett Coon in 1850 in Clay Township. This is likely David Finkle enumerated with the wrong surname.
  • John Finkle, age 34 of Clyde, married Nancy H. Comb, age 22 of Clay, 15 Nov 1840 in Clyde. Have not found them in any census record from 1850 onward.
  • There is a woman age 20-29 in the household of David Coombs in Clay Township in the 1840 census. Could be Nancy.
If anyone has further suggestions of where to take this research, please let me know.