Posts Tagged ‘Updegraff’

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Murphy & Aspery

I feel pretty confident on what I’ve found so far with the Murphy and Asperys, so I’ve created a public Ancestry.com tree and have attached most of my sources. Let me know if you’re interested and I’ll email you the link. This includes the surnames: Murphy, Quinn, Aspery, and Perchase.  The Murphys moved out of Ireland in the early 1800’s and were always on the go throughout Wales, England, and then finally ended up in Pennsylvania.  Their movements seemed to be guided by the rise and fall of various ironworks around the UK.

Richards & Williams

Margaret Ann Richards (Murphy Patterson) had a sister named Bessie and parents John Richards and Ann Williams. Family lore is that Ann died when the girls were young and John moved them with their step-mother to Pennsylvania from Yorkshire, England in 1882.  I’ve found a potential 1881 census record of a Margaret, Bessie and parents John and Ann in Yorkshire.  But, it also includes other siblings Polly, Joseph, and Elizabeth.  As far as I know, Margaret never mentioned having any other siblings, other than Bessie.  I’m still trying to figure all this out.

Duncan & Rostron

This line includes surnames: Duncan, Glass, Ford, Rostron, Barwell, Kane, and Sullivan.  I’m looking for a descendant of either James Duncan (1769-1861) or Hugh Duncan (1799-1870) to compare DNA with. Also looking for an obituary for Jennie Salina (Ford) Duncan who died in 1936 in Effingham, Illinois.

Zillifro

Definitely need to find a descendant of Samuel Willis (abt 1823-?) or Sarah Jane Hilliard (abt 1818-?) to compare DNA with because I have NO IDEA if these are the correct grandparents of Loretta Alice (Zillifro) Hutchinson. She claimed that her “real” mother was a native american that died during childbirth – which, I know, is very unlikely, but I think it’s still possible that her real mother did die during childbirth and her father, Egbert Zillifro, remarried very quickly after. I’d really like to connect with someone from the supposed step-mother’s line to get to the bottom of it.

Hutchinson

I spent so much time on this line, almost an entire year exclusively, that I barely look at it anymore. It includes the surnames: Hutchison, Moorhead, Campbell, Patton, Jamison, Shryock, Anderson, and Blackstone.  They are Irish and Scottish immigrants from the late 1700’s and ended up in the area of Indiana, PA and Butler, PA. This is the line that connects to Fergus Moorhead, our Revolutionary War ancestor and would qualify the women in my family to join the Daughters of the American Revolution. Unfortunately, the application rules are so stringent that I completely lost interest.

Updegraff

The Updegraffs are well documented back to the late 1500’s.  It’s my oldest line and they have interesting connections to the creation of the Mennonite church, William Penn, and early Philadelphia. But, I have little to no information on any of the women that married into the Updegraff family (it’s a very lopsided tree!). I’m particularly interested in the Millers of Hagerstown, MD and Somerset, PA.

Pirolt & Rauscher

Oh, my Austrian ancestors!  I feel like I will never know their story. I have a couple leads. One is that my grandfather’s brother supposedly died in WW2 at the Battle of Monte Cassino. If I could be on the show “Who Do You Think You Are,” I would definitely want to do this family line.

Harman Updegraff & Margaret Miller

Southern Methodist University, Central University Libraries, DeGolyer Library

1850’s Pennsylvania Freight Locomotive (Southern Methodist University, Central University Libraries, DeGolyer Library)

Two things I can tell you about my ancestors: there are a lot of Margarets and a lot of accidental deaths.

Harman Alexander Updegraff was born 28 August 1821* in Somerset County, Pennsylvania to Harmon Updegraff and Rachel Howard.  He was a farmer in his early years and later became a conductor of a freight train of the Pennsylvania Railroad.

Updegraff Residence

Updegraff Residence

Harman’s wife, Margaret Miller, was born 15 February 1820 in Somerset County, Pennsylvania.  The two were married in March of 1845* and had eight children.  They lived in downtown Johnstown near the Baltimore & Ohio station, on Washington Street.

The Adams Sentinel and General Advertiser, 5 Dec 1860, p. 1

The Adams Sentinel and General Advertiser, 5 Dec 1860, p. 1

On November 29, 1860 while working somewhere between Derry and Latrobe, Harman fell from his train onto the tracks and was killed. He was only 39 years old and left his five young children and newly pregnant wife (two of their children had passed years earlier).  Harman was buried at the Levergood Cemetery but was later exhumed and interred in Grand View Cemetery.

As Margaret’s children grew up and got married, she permanently moved in with her daughter Margaret Angelina Williams. Her son William had moved to Harrisburg, George to Chicago, and Henry to New Castle, but James and Margaret Angelina stayed in Johnstown.  She was a member of the Trinity Lutheran Church and survived the Great Johnstown Flood in 1889.

On March 11, 1898 Margaret set off to walk from her daughter’s house to her son’s a short distance away.  Her daughter was concerned about her walking by herself, but she insisted that she did not need help as she had just walked from the train station the day before by herself. Just minutes after leaving the house, Margaret was struck by a Pacific Express Train, 37 years after her husband’s tragic death.  She was buried with her husband in Grandview Cemetery.

Johnstown Daily Tribune, 11 March 1898

Johnstown Daily Tribune, 11 March 1898

Source List

Aged Lady Killed by a Train.” Undated clipping, ca. 1898, from unidentified newspaper.

“Killed on the Railroad.” The Adams Sentinel and General Advertiser, 5 December 1860. Digital images, http://newspaperarchive.com/adams-sentinel : 2012.

“Updegraff.” The Johnstown Daily Tribune, 11 March 1898.

Grandview Cemetery.  Internment file, database. http://grandviewjohnstownpa.com/interment-search.php : 2012.

Pennsylvania. Cambria County. 1850 – 1880 U.S. census, population schedules. Digital images. Ancestry.com. http://www.ancestry.com : 2012.

Pennsylvania. Cambria County. Death Certificate. Clerk of Orphans Court, Johnstown.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints [LDS].  “Pedigree Resource File,” database.  FamilySearch.  http://www.familysearch.org : 2012.

*Note: Harman’s exact birth and marriage date came from the Pedigree Resource File.

Related Posts:

Loretta (Zillifro) Hutchinson & Oscar Hutchinson

Margaret (Davis) Updegraff

Updegraff Page

Perspectives on Poverty and Genealogy

I love statistics and all the fun charts and graphs you can make. I also love TED Talks. You can imagine my delight when watching Hans Rosling’s New Insights on Poverty, when he inserts his grandparents into the data set while comparing past and present economic situations around the world. Genealogy adding context to economic data? Yes please!

Here’s how it works. Gapminder has compiled an incredible amount of historical data from around the world on various topics such as life expectancy, education, energy consumption, GDP, population growth, etc. Click here to view a chart of life expectancy and income per person (inflation-adjusted). On this particular chart, the data goes back to the year 1800 and if you click “play,” you’ll see some incredible patterns unfold.  Not much happens in the 1800’s, but around 1910 things start to really take off. On the right bar, you can click on a particular country to see their journey to increased life expectancy and income.

Inspired by Mr. Rosling’s example, I thought I would give some context to the world my ancestors were born into.

My Great Grandfather, John William Updegraff, who was born in 1889 in the United States, was born into similar conditions (life expectancy/income) as present day Swaziland.

Using the same reasoning, my Grandfather, Robert Lee Updegraff was born in South Africa and my Mother in Trinidad and Tobago. Myself, born in 1983, similar to present day United Arab Emirates.

I would have gone back to my 2nd Great Grandfather Henry Updegraff, who was born in 1855, but there are no present day countries represented in the data with similar life expectancy and income.

It’s interesting to note the consistent and significant increase of life expectancy among each generation in the United States.

Looking at my Dad’s family, all born in Austria, I ran into a couple issues.  In comparing child mortality with income per person (inflation-adjusted), I couldn’t find a similar present day equivalent to the world that my Great Grandfather Kilian Pirolt (1874 Austria) was born into. Furthermore, my Grandfather Johann Pirolt (1906 Austria) and my Father (1944 Austria), were both born into similar conditions; thanks to WW2 there was little improvement among the two generations.  In fact, in 1945, Austria reverted back to the 1860 income rate and 1914 child mortality rate.  It took nearly 5 years for them to get back on a consistent track of improvement.

I encourage everyone to check out the gapminder website and enter in the countries and dates your ancestors were born.  The data will give you a better understanding of the conditions of and improvements made from one generation to the next.

Sunday’s Obituary – Margaret Davis-Updegraff

Margaret H. Davis was born 19 January 1861 in Johnstown,1 Pennsylvania to David H Davis and Catherine Annie Harris, both immigrants from Wales. She was the 5th child of 13 born to David and Catherine.

Margaret Davis married Henry Herman Updegraff in 1881.  Her siblings considered her “marrying well.”  The young couple moved to New Castle between 1885 and 18892 (just before the horrendous Johnstown Flood of 1889).  Margaret and Henry raised four children: Clarence David, Royer Howard, John William, and Alma Catherine.  Margaret’s younger sister, Rachel Davis also lived with Margaret and Henry until she was married to William G. Fischer in 1901.

Margaret hosted many social events for her children, especially her daughter Alma.3  They had a cottage at Brady’s Lake in Ohio and in one instance in 1904, Margaret and her sister Rachel Fischer took the two oldest children (Clarence and Royer) and their girlfriends (to whom they were later engaged) on a vacation there.  The family appeared in the “Society Section” of the New Castle News over 20 times between the year 1900 and 1920.

27 September 1945 - Youngstown Vindicator

Margaret was certainly the matriarch of the Davis and Updegraff family.  Not only did she host many family and social gatherings but she also cared for many.  In addition to caring for her younger sister Rachel, she also took in her niece, after her sister-in-law (widow of Margaret’s brother Luther John Davis) passed away unexpectedly.  When her niece, Irene married, the couple continued to live with the Updegraffs until they could afford a place of their own.

In 1923, Margaret’s husband, Henry Herman Updegraff passed away.  She moved to Youngstown, Ohio to live with her son John William and became the primary caregiver for her two grandsons Robert Lee (my grandfather) and John Leroy.  Margaret was a very important person in my grandfather’s life and according to my mother “she could do no wrong in his eyes.”

Margaret passed away on 26 September 1945 of heart failure.  She is buried with her husbad in Graceland Cemetery in New Castle, Pennsylvania.

1 The obituaries posted in the Youngstown Vindicator and New Castle News have conflicting birth dates: 23 January 1861 and 19 January 1861, respectively. Margaret’s death certificate lists the birth date as 19 January 1861.
2 Royer Howard was born in 1885 in Johnstown and the next child, John William, was born March 1889 in New Castle, indicating the family moved sometime between 1885 and March 1889.
3 To read more about the events and gatherings Margaret hosted with her daughter Alma, click here.

Click here for a list of sources used.

1790-1840 Census – More Than You Think!

I had the pleasure of attending a class yesterday at the National Archives in Washington, DC titled: Beyond the Basics: Census, 1790–1840.  The Archives offers various genealogy classes each week and I thought this would be a great topic.  I hadn’t given the 1790-1840 Censuses much attention before now.

Well, I learned a lot!

1840 Census School Data
At the end (or sometimes beginning) of each township census, there is a page that lists data on schools in the area.  Data includes how many universities or colleges, number of students, academies and grammar schools, number of scholars, primary and common schools, number of scholars at public charge, and number of white persons over 20 years of age to each family who cannot read and write.  Was there someone in the family household that was attending school?  Compare them with the total students in that township.  Did your ancestors grow up in a town with many schools, but did not attend themselves, or vise versa?

1820 Census Age Overlap
The 1820 Census lists males that are ages 16-18 and also 16-25.  If you have 2 males ages 16-18 and 4 males 16-25, then you probably have 2 males ages 19-25.  The government wanted a category that listed the total number of males of “military age.”  I had completely overlooked this before.

Helpful Tip  – List the names associated with each age group
For example, the 1820 Census has Fergus Hutchinson (4th great grandfather) listed as the head of the household in Donegal Township, Butler County, Pennsylvania.  He was 21 years old, not yet married, but many people living in the house.  I didn’t take the time to investigate this until yesterday. An easy way to sort through these earlier records is write out the names of each number.  I realized that both parents had passed away already, so Fergus being the oldest was the head of the household with his 8 younger siblings.

Males < 10 years old  (1) = William Moorhead
Males 16-18 years old (2) = George and John
Males 16-25 years old (4) = Fergus (head of the household) and an unknown male – remember the overlap with the 16-18 year category.
Females < 10 years old (2) = Matilda and Ann
Females 10-15 years old (2) = Maria and Euphemia
Females 16-25 years old (1) = Sarah Jane
Number of Persons Engaged in Agriculture (6)

After mapping it out, I’m pretty confident that this is “my” Fergus Hutchinson.  Everyone is accounted for except that unknown male, and no one is missing.  I actually didn’t know Euphemia’s birthday, but through process of elimination, I now know it’s between 1810 and 1815.

Writing out the names for each is very helpful, especially if you have a common first and last name that shows up multiple times in one county.

Records of the 1820 Census of Manufacturers
The 1820 Census asks how many people in the household engaged in either agriculture, commerce, or manufacturing.  A separate census was taken if someone was engaged in manufacturing.  The information gathered was the name of the manufacturer, the type of manufacturing, location of manufacturer, and information on the kind of raw materials, persons employed, machinery, expenditures, and production.

The idea of collecting data from manufacturers had actually started with the 1810 census, but because enumerators were not given any guidelines, the amount of information and quality was very inconsistent.

The Records of the 1820 Census of Manufacturing cannot be found on Ancestry.com or FamilySearch.com.  As far as I know, you must go to the National Archives in DC or order the microfilm.  Do you have any ancestors that were manufacturers?  I’m interested to see what the records actually look like!  

Use HeritageQuest to Find Census Records
“If you rely on one source, you will not find everything you need” said the NARA instructor.  According to her, Ancestry.com outsourced their earlier indexing to people that did not speak English very well.  Those that indexed at HeritageQuest were genealogists and English speakers.  I have no proof of this and can’t find any data online, but through her many years of experience, she has found less transcription errors on HeritageQuest.  We should use both and form our own opinion.  I see pros and cons to both: HeritageQuest groups your search results in a less cluttered manner while Ancestry.com accounts for name misspellings giving you a larger search results range.  I’ll definitely start using them simultaneously.  Examples of HeritageQuest:

Keywords: Updegraff, 1790 Census, Pennsylvania
Results: There were 11 households with the name Updegraff in Pennsylvania in 1790, all in York County (There are probably more if you take into account spelling variations- you can use Ancestry.com to cross reference).

These are the 11 Updegraff households (Harman is my 5th great grandfather):

Foreigners Not Naturalized
The 1820 and 1830 Censuses reported the number of people in the household that were not naturalized.  This may give some direction in looking for naturalization records.  In 1802, the residency requirement for naturalization was changed from 14 to 5 years.  The 14 year rule was part of John Adam’s Alien and Sedition Acts of 1798.  An alien was required to file a declaration of intent (usually the first 3 years of residency) and then may petition the court for admission to citizenship (2-7 years after declaration) a total of 5 years after being a resident.  If your ancestor was an alien in 1820, you may want to search for naturalization records for 1821-1826.   These documents could be filed at any court office – local, state, or federal, wherever it was convenient.  Unfortunately, many of these courts did not hold on to the records, but  it’s worth making a couple calls to these various locations to check if they have them still.

Sources for Census Records

I will definitely be attending more classes at the National Archives!  It’s just amazing how many resources are out there.

An Unusually Attractive and Popular Girl

On occasion, while researching my family history, I’ve come across a person, photo, or event that touched me personally.  Often it was completely unexpected, and mostly about ancestors that I wasn’t even that closely related to.  One such instance occurred while reading about my great grand aunt Alma Catherine Updegraff.  Thanks to the New Castle News archives at the New Castle library, we can piece together some fantastic details of Alma’s life.  She is mentioned nearly 50 times in the Society Section during the time of her childhood and adult life.

Alma Catherine Updegraff

Childhood
5 February 1895:  Alma Catherine Updegraff was born in New Castle, Pennsylvania to Henry Herman Updegraff and Margaret H Davis.  She was much younger than her three older brothers: Clarence David, Royer Howard, and John “Jay” William. (1900 Census)

2 June 1900:  Five year old Alma was living with her parents, three older brothers, and Aunt Rachel Davis (her mother’s youngest sister) near 257 West Washington Street, New Castle, Pennsylvania. (1900 Census)

Adolescence 
20 March 1908:  A large meeting was held by The Protected Home Circle and the Ladies League, with a great number of members being present.  For entertainment, Alma performed a duet, “Star of the East” with Charles Isaacs.

7 February 1911: So that Alma’s 16th birthday would not go unnoticed, her friends at the L.B.G. Club planned a surprise party.  Alma’s mother furnished the music and entertainment and decorated the house with red and white ribbons, flowers, and hearts.

29 November 1911: Alma and her brother Jay spent Thanksgiving with their Aunt Susannah Davis-Schultz (mother’s sister) in Alliance, Ohio.

31 Jan 1912:  While visiting their home at 135 North Beaver Street, New Castle, Alma’s Aunt Annie Hughes-Davis died of dropsy.  Annie Hughes-Davis was the wife of Alma’s mother’s younger brother Luther John Davis.

11 March 1912: Alma and her brother Jay visit for a couple of days to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, possibly to see their Aunt Rachel Davis.

17 January 1913: Just before her 18th birthday, Alma was appointed Pianist at the Protected Home Circle, New Castle Circle No. 5 (a fraternal insurance organization).

Adulthood
11 July 1913:  On this day she participated in a motor party to Youngstown with some friends, her brother Jay, and future fiancé Leon Claire Taggart.

15 August 1913:  In honor of a friend visiting from New York, Alma hosted a 6 o’clock dinner at her Front Street home.

30 October 1913: Alma participated in a “progressive party” in which party attendees change houses for each course.  Alma’s house was the last stop and was co-hosted by her cousin Irene Davis (Uncle Luther John Davis’ daughter).

28 July 1915:  Alma attended a “Supper at Park” in honor of her sister-in-law’s cousin visiting from Pittsburgh.  Those in attendance included her brother Clarence David and sister-in-law Minnie Colgan, brother Jay, and future fiancé Leon Clare Taggart.

31 August 1915: Alma hosted a “Corn Roast” with four of her friends.  The event was decorated with japanese lanterns and Alma’s mother served the refreshments.  Music and dancing occurred later in the evening.

Engagement
16 February 1918:  Alma was described in her engagement announcement as “unusually attractive and popular.”  The engagement party was held at the home of Alma’s parents and was hosted by her mother, sister-in-law Minnie Colgan, and Aunt Rachel Davis-Fischer.  A basket of red tulips decorated with red, white, and blue ribbon hung from the chandelier.  The favors to guests included miniature ships filled with red and white candy and the message “will sail in the spring.”

Marriage
13 January 1920: Renting at 179 Cleveland Street, Youngstown, Ohio with husband Leon Clare Taggart. (1920 Census)

16 April 1920:  The J.B.G. Girls held a farewell dinner at the Leslie House in honor of Alma who was moving to Akron, Ohio.

5 July 1921: Alma and Leon visit with her parents in Youngstown because of the serious sickness of Irene Davis-Shaffer -Alma’s 1st cousin.

17 February 1925: Mr. and Mrs. Leon Clare Taggart celebrate the birth of their son, Leon Russell Taggart.  (Family called him Russell, my Uncle Rusty Updegraff was actually named after him!)

7 April 1930:  Living at 35 Erskine Avenue, Youngstown, Ohio with husband and five year old son. (1930 Census)

Tragedy
20 November 1930: Funeral services for Alma Updegraff-Taggart occurred at the family residence 35 Erskine Avenue.  The house was filled with beautiful flowers and many friends in mourning.

I was absolutely shocked when I read the last article.  Happiness seemed to surround Alma and it was so enjoyable reading each article.  The last thing I was expecting to read was her obituary.

Alma died during childbirth at the age of 35.

Unless otherwise noted, all events have been gathered from the New Castle News archives.

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