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Michigan Insane Asylum Records Article

12 Apr

I have posted below my Michigan Insane Asylum Records article as published in the Acorns to Oaks, Vol. 32, No. 4 of the Michigan Oakland County Genealogical Society Quarterly. The article goes into detail as to how to secure records.

AsylumRecordsArticleP.1 AsylumRecordsArticleP.2 AsylumRecordsArticleP.3

Francis Cooper & Sarah Booth Family of Baildon

8 Mar

Francis Cooper married Sarah Booth on 13 OCT 1815 in Baildon, West Riding Yorkshire, England at St. John the Evangelist Church. Francis died 18 JAN 1850 in Baildon with burial at St. John the Evangelist Church. Sarah died prior to 1841 (she is missing from the 1841 England Census and Francis is listed as a widower.)

Here is their marriage record:

Francis Cooper & Sarah Booth

Francis and Sarah had eight children that I can figure at this time:

1) Francis Booth was born 23 APR 1815 in Baildon. He was born out of wedlock to Sarah Booth, prior to her marriage to his father, Francis Cooper. He was married to Sarah Ward (1820 – ?) on 13 AUG 1837 in Baildon at St. John the Evangelist Church. He was also married to Mary Wood on 2 JAN 1870 in Bradford at St. Peter’s Cathedral. Please note that Francis Booth listed his father as Francis Cooper on his marriage record. This was not that unusual at this time in this region.

Francis Booth Baptism

Francis Booth & Sarah Ward Marriage Record

2) Benjamin Cooper was born about 1816 in Baildon.

3) Margaret Cooper was born 08 JUL 1817 in Baildon. This is my fourth great-grandmother and you may find other information about her under the tag- Margaret Cooper Ellison Hudson. If you click on PDF below you will see her baptismal record.

MargaretCooperBaptism

4) John Cooper was born 22 AUG 1820 in Baildon. If you click on PDF below you will see his baptismal record.

JohnCooperBaptism

5) Thomas Cooper was born about 1820 in Baildon. He married Hannah Moorhouse (1823 – ?) on 17 NOV 1842 in Otley at the All Saints Church, Yorkshire. He died about 1887 in Baildon with burial at St. John the Evangelist. It appears that Thomas and Hannah had at least nine children: Booth (1884 – ?), Mary Ann (1846 – ?), George (1848 – ?), Joshua (1851 – ?), Thomas (1854 – ?), Alfred S. (1856 – ?), Richard (1857 – ?), Henry M. (1865 – ?), and Emily (1875 -?)

6) Samuel Cooper was christened on 20 APR 1823 in Baildon. He was married on 25 MAY 1843 in Bingley at the All Saints Church to Ellen Cockshott (1822 – ?) and he died APR 1860 in Bingley with burial at All Saints. It appears that Samuel and Ellen had at least two children: Henry (1848 – ?) and Mary (1850 – ?).

7) Sarah Ann Cooper was born about 1826 in Baildon. She was married on 28 JAN 1850 to Francis Wilks (1825 – ?) in Bradford at St. Peter’s Cathedral in Yorkshire. In 1881, Sarah Ann was listed on the Pudsey, Yorkshire Census. It appears that Francis and Sarah Ann had at least four children: William (1854 – ?), Dawnbough (1859 – ?), Joseph (1863 – ?) and Sarah Hannah (1866 – ?).

8) Mary Ann Cooper was born 01 AUG 1832 in Baildon and died at the age of one on 16 MAY 1834 in Baildon with burial at St. John the Evangelist Church.

You may see my sources used on my public Ellison Family Tree on ancestry.com. Please contact me if you have further information on this family and their descendants. I am very much interested in understanding what happened to my fourth great-grandmother’s siblings and their families.

Substitute for 1890 US Census in Oakland County, Michigan

29 Feb

If your ancestor lived in Oakland County around 1890, you will be interested in checking out the work of the Oakland County Genealogical Society here: http://www.ocgsmi.org/1890%20Oakland%20County%20Michigan%20Census%20Substitute

OCGS volunteers (yes, me too) have created indexes to the tax assessment rolls for the following areas in Oakland County, Michigan:

1884, 1890 & 1894 Brandon Township

1884, 1890 & 1894 Orion Township

1886 Avon Township

OCGS is actively seeking to borrow tax assessment rolls from additional locations in Oakland County, if you can help with this aspect of the project please let me know.The records will be scanned by the society and then indexed and made available for free to researchers at the above site. The city or township will then receive a CD of the scanned records.

Why is this project so important? The 1890 US Census was largely destroyed and mostly unavailable to genealogical researchers. When someone is tracking their ancestors, they must leap from 1880 to 1900 in the censuses and so much can happen in twenty years. By indexing the tax assessment rolls, family historians can pinpoint their ancestor’s location during those years and then can locate other records. It is vital in research to try and ascertain your family’s exact location.

OCGS would like to have all of Oakland County available to researchers.

Benjamin and Mary Maria Ellison Family of Baildon, Yorkshire, England

24 Feb

Whatever happened to Walker Ellison’s family?

Walker Ellison was the son of Benjamin Ellison and Mary Maria Ambler of Baildon, West Riding Yorkshire. He was born on 31 AUG 1818 in Birstall, Yorkshire, England and was christened on 1 NOV 1818 at St. Peter’s Parish Church in Birstall.

On 11 NOV 1838 he married Margaret Cooper at the All Saint’s Church in Otley, Yorkshire. Walker and Margaret had two children: Mary Maria (1839-1909) and Benjamin Walker (1841-1913). Walker and Margaret are my 4th great-grandparents. Walker died on 31 MAR 1841 in Linton-on-Ouse, Easingwold, Yorkshire, England and is supposedly buried there. I have as of yet found his will. Walker was recorded as having been a wool sorter.

Benjamin Ellison was married on 13 AUG 1810 at St John the Evangelist Church in Baildon, Yorkshire to Mary Maria Ambler, the daughter of John Ambler (1757-1831) and Hannah Walker. Walker then was named after his paternal grandmother’s family name. Unfortunately, Mary Maria died shortly after having her last child on 25 MAR 1829 and she is buried, along with Benjamin, at St. Wilfrid’s Church in Burnsall and you can read their monument inscription here: http://www.burnsall.bradford.anglican.org/monuments.htm. Mary Maria was born 18 FEB 1786 in Baildon and was baptized on 19 FEB 1786 at St. John the Evangelist Church in Baildon. Mary Maria is descended from the wealthy Ambler family of Baildon. Benjamin was listed as being a bookkeeper and also often a gentleman on vital records.

The children of Mary Maria and Benjamin Ellison:

  1. Hannah Maria Margaret  (1811 – ?)
  2. William  (1813 – ?)
  3. Frances Rebecca (1814 – 1889)
  4. John (1815 – 1816)
  5. Benjamin Ambler  (1816 – ?)
  6. Walker (1818 – 1841)
  7. Christiana Sarah Alice (1821 – 1892)
  8. Peter Charles James (1823 – 1880)
  9. Jeremiah Thomas (1825 – 1844)
  10. Mary Martha (1828 – 1889)

1) Hannah Maria Margaret Ellison was born 30 JUN 1811 in Birstall, Yorkshire. She was married on 1 FEB 1830 to James Robinson. I have been unable to locate the Robinson’s in Yorkshire and suspect they immigrated but have been unable to trace them. Annie Hudson, Benjamin Walker Ellison’s half-sister, married Enoch Kimball Robinson (of Massachusetts) and I wonder if there isn’t a connection here. As Annie would not be a blood relation to the Robinson’s but may have met them through Benjamin Walker, a blood relation.

2) William Ellison was baptized on 19 SEP 1813 in Baildon at St. John the Evangelist Church. He was married on 16 MAY 1849 to Elizabeth Grimshaw (1817 – ?) at All Saints Church, Otley, Yorkshire. He is listed on the 1851 England Census in Bradford, Yorkshire on the 1861 Census in Eccleshill, Yorkshire and the 1871 and 1881 Censuses in Manningham, Yorkshire. William and Elizabeth had at least two children: Grimshaw and Mary E.

Grimshaw Ellison was born about 1853 in Bradford and married Mary Alice Walker (1859 – 1945) on 18 NOV 1891 in Baildon at St. John the Evangelist Church. On 27 NOV 1903, at the age of 50, Grimshaw arrived in New York, New York alone, having resided in Baildon as of the 1901 England Census. On 28 SEP 1904, Grimshaw died aboard the Ship Baltic while escorting his wife to America. Mary Alice arrived in New York two days later. She died about 1945 in Baildon. Grimshaw and Mary Alice had at least three children: William (1894 – ?), Mary Doris (1897 – ?) and the Reverend Geoffrey Walker (1898 – 1978).

3) Frances Rebecca Ellison was born 12 MAR 1814 in Birstall, Yorkshire and baptized on 25 MAY 1814 in Birstall at St. Peter’s Church. On the 1861 and 1871 England Census, she is listed in Ripon, Yorkshire and she died 19 DEC 1889 in West Riding Yorkshire. She never married.

4) John Ellison was born JUN 1815 in Baildon and died 10 JAN 1816, buried at St. John the Evangelist, Baildon, Yorkshire.

5) Benjamin Ambler Ellison was born 22 SEP 1816 in Baildon, Yorkshire. He was baptized on 6 APR 1817 in Baildon at St. John the Evangelist Church. On 22 NOV 1841, Benjamin arrived in New York, New York. On 23 MAY 1844, he married Mary Patten at St James Cathedral Anglican Church in Toronto, Canada. He is listed on 1852 and 1861 Canada Census as living in York, Canada West. Benjamin and Mary had at least nine children: Maria (1844 – ?), Susanna (1845 – ?), Alice (1846 – ?), Benjamin Ambler (1848 – 1926), John (1850 – ?), William (1854 – ?), Elizabeth (1866 – ?), Margaret (1868 – ?), and Catherine (1869 – ?). It is Benjamin that was the first emigrant out of Baildon in Walker’s family and it is my guess that he convinced Walker’s widowed wife, Margaret and her new husband William Hudson and his younger sister, Christiana Sarah Alice and her husband Martin Taylor, to leave England.  The Taylor’s lived by the Benjamin Ellison family after their arrival in New York in 1848.

Maria was born in 1844 in Canada. She was married to Thomas Lamb (1835 – ?) on 21 NOV 1865 in Haldimand, Ontario, Canada. The Lamb’s are listed on the 1880 US Census as living in Buffalo, Erie, New York. They had at least three children: William (1868 – ?), Emma (1870 – ?) and Thomas (1874 – ?).

Benjamin Ambler was born in 1848 in Ontario, Canada and was married to Sophia R. Birnie on 19 FEB 1880 in Ontario, Ontario, Canada. He died 8 DEC 1926 in Whitley, Ontario, Canada. They had at least one child: Margaret (1881 – 1945).

John was born 1850 in Canada and was listed on the 1880 US Census as living also in Buffalo, Erie, New York.

7) Christiana Sarah Alice was born about 1821 in Baildon, Yorkshire, England. On 31 MAY 1842, she married Martin Taylor (1819 – 1899) in Otley at the All Saint’s Church. She died on 13 SEP 1892 in Thorah, Ontario, Canada. On 15 SEP 1848, (Christiana Sarah) Alice, Martin and three of their children arrived in New York on the Ship Senator with Margaret and William Hudson and their children – Mary Maria Ellison, Benjamin Walker Ellison, Annie Hudson and Emma Hudson. Martin was a joiner; his father was John Taylor a dyer of Baildon. Alice and Martin Taylor had at least five children, the first three born in England: William (1844 – ?), Jeremiah (1846 – ?), Anne/Hannah (1848 – ?), Alice (1850 – ?), and Ada (1858 – ?). Beginning in 1852, the Taylor family is listed on Canada Censuses as living in York and then in 1871 in Ontario. They lived near Alice’s brother, Benjamin Ambler Ellison.

8) Peter Charles James was born 24 JUL 1823 in Yorkshire, England. He was married to Ann Steel (1825 – ?) on 13 AUG 1844 in Otley at the All Saint’s Church. On the 1851 England Census they are listed in Horton, Yorkshire and on the 1861 Census, in Baildon. On 12 SEP 1867, Peter arrived with his son Charles Steel in New York, New York, and he died 27 JUN 1880 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Peter and Ann had at least five children: Margaret (1846 – ?), Sophia (1849 – 1862), Alice (1850 – ?), Charles Steel (1853 – ?) and Emily (1855 – ?).

Charles Steel Ellison was born about 1853 in Bradford, Yorkshire, England. On the 1880 US Census he is listed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

9) Jeremiah Thomas Ellison was born 18 OCT 1825 in Yorkshire, England and died at 19 years of age on 24 NOV 1844 in Baildon, with burial at St. John the Evangelist.

10) Mary Martha Ellison was born 18 AUG 1828 in Burnsall, Yorkshire, England. She was married to Edward Poole Fearnley (1819 – ?) on 29 DEC 1849 in Baildon at St. John the Evangelist Church. On the 1851 England Census, they are listed in Shipley, Yorkshire and on the 1861 and 1871, they are in Bradford, Yorkshire. Mary Martha died in JUL 1889 in West Riding Yorkshire. Mary and Edward had at least four children: Samuel (1850 – ?), Alice (1853 – ?), Kate (1856 – ?), and Ellen (1858 – ?).

All of the information recorded above is sourced on my ancestry.com public ELLISON FAMILY TREE by Journeybooks. You will see the documents I found listed there. You can see this information without paying for a membership.

Please contact me through this blog if you are a cousin or have additional information. I look forward to hearing from you!

Jennifer Ralston Porter

Samuel Delmont Ellison & Family

15 Feb

Samuel Delmont Ellison was the oldest son of Benjamin Walker Ellison and Mary Alice (Cutler), born on 1 JUN 1866 in Greenville, Montcalm County, Michigan. According to United States IRS Tax Assessment records, the Benjamin Ellison family lived in Eureka and Greenville from Dec. 1865. In 1870, the family was living in Cleveland, Ohio and in 1874, they moved to Boyne Falls, Charlevoix County, Michigan. Samuel’s father was a maltster and a farmer and was debilitated by the after effects of having contracted malaria during his service to the Union.

On 22 JUL 1891, Samuel married Caroline Seegmiller, the daughter of Henry and Mary A. Seegmiller. Caroline was born 11 OCT 1870 in Ontario, Canada and with her family, immigrated to Grand Traverse County, Michigan about 1884.

Caroline and Samuel had two children. Russell Henry Ellison born 17 NOV 1895 in Grand Rapids, Michigan and Glyndon Walker Ellison born 28 NOV 1897 also in Grand Rapids. By 1900, Caroline was living in the Traverse City State Hospital (also known as Northern Michigan Asylum), Grand Traverse County, Michigan.

Traverse City State Hospital

In 1900, Samuel and his sons were without a wife and mother. Samuel lived in Eau Claire city, Eau Claire, Wisconsin. His oldest son, Russell was living with his maternal grandparents Henry and Mary Seegmiller in Paradise, Grand Traverse County, Michigan. Glyndon was living with his paternal grandparents Benjamin and Mary A Ellison in Boyne Valley, Charlevoix County, Michigan.

But in 1903 the boys had joined their father in Eau Claire and attended school there.

In 1910, Samuel lived with his parents, Benjamin and Mary Ellison in Boyne Valley, Charlevoix County, Michigan. His sons, Russell and Glyndon were not living with the family. Samuel helped care for his now almost entirely disabled father.

On 10 JUN 1913 in Charlevoix County, Michigan, Samuel applied for a marriage license to Tena Watkins, a 42 year old divorcee from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The application was denied and the marriage did not take place. On the 1910 and 1920 Census, Caroline Ellison continued to be listed as a married woman and a resident of the Insane Asylum.

In 1920, Samuel was living in the State Lunatic Asylum in Austin, Texas.

Insane Asylum Austin Texas

On 23 JAN 1921, Samuel died in the State Lunatic Asylum in Austin, Texas. No one claimed his body and he was buried in the Austin Texas Asylum Cemetery.

In 1922, Russell’s first wife, Harriet, died in El Paso, Texas.

HarriettEllisonDeathRecord

On 21 SEP 1927, Caroline died in the Northern Michigan Asylum in Grand Traverse County, Michigan.

Caroline Seegmiller Birth Record

Samuel Ellison 1910 US Census

Tena Watkins 1910 US Census

SEllisonArticle1898

Samuel D Ellison 1900 US Census

SD Ellison Application for Marriage to Tena Watkins

SD Ellison & Caroline Seegmiller Marr. Rec.

SD Ellison Death Record

CarolineEllisonArticle1898

Caroline Ellison on 1910 US Census

Going to America by Terry Coleman

5 Dec

Going to America by Terry Coleman is a must read if your ancestor emigrated from the United Kingdom during the mid-nineteenth century to America. Coleman takes the reader step-by-step through the emigration process, from the decision to leave home and booking passage in Liverpool to the journey and arrival in New York.

Rich with details, Coleman gives an exhaustive understanding of what the entire experience must have been like for our courageous ancestors. The emigrants had to be on the constant lookout for runners who would steal from them at every opportunity, from their arrival in Liverpool to their arrival in New York. At the mercy of the captain and crew, the emigrants had to survive trips that on the average lasted 35 days. If an emigrant died on board ship, they were often tossed overboard with little concern or sympathy. Cruel captains could withhold rations, drinking water and even the opportunity to cook on the cooking fires on deck. Passengers were forced to work on board and the ships were not cleaned until they arrived in the bay, before docking in New York. Passengers were crammed into berths and if ill, there was often no one to care for them.

Coleman also explains how the emigrants traveled into the interior land of America upon their arrival. In the appendices are The Passenger Acts, both British and American. Coleman credits the sources used extensively, allowing further look up of materials published during the middle of the nineteenth century. Illustrations of ships, emigrants, Liverpool, New York in 1852 and advertisements from the time are included.

No other book I’ve read thus far on immigration, and I have read about 15 of them, brought to life for me what it must’ve been like for my English ancestors to sail from Liverpool in 1848 and arrive in New York. I highly recommend Going to America as an excellent genealogical resource.

Yorkshire, England Online Resources

3 Dec

I found these two sites run by Peter Ward while researching Yorkshire, England.

Peter has many wills from Yorkshire transcribed here: http://www.willtranscriptions.co.uk/  .

And then at the other site http://bmd-cert-exch-site.ourwardfamily.com/ it appears people are sharing vital records from Yorkshire.

Don’t forget to check the Yorkshire BMD indexes at: http://www.yorkshirebmd.org.uk/. Here you can check for your ancestors and order copies of the certificates, if you can locate a bank that will sell you a certified money order in sterling pounds.

An absolutely wonderful site on Yorkshire, with many resources: http://www.genuki.org.uk/big/eng/YKS/index.html .

The site has a separate page for the Otley, West Yorkshire area: http://www.genuki.org.uk/big/eng/YKS/WRY/Otley/

The Gravestone Photographic Resource is indexing and taking photos of Yorkshire cemeteries: http://www.gravestonephotos.com/public/area.php?area=yorkshire

I am researching the following surnames from Baildon, West Riding Yorkshire: Ellison, Cooper, Hudson.

Some of my Ellison’s from Baildon settled in Ontario, Canada and in Philadelphia, PA. My direct branch settled in Cleveland, OH and then Michigan.

Resource for Genealogists

27 Oct

Frederick Merks’ book “History of the Westward Movement” is a valuable resource for family historians. Merk goes into extensive detail on the history of land transfers, migrations, taxation, legislation and the American economy from the beginning of American history up to Migratory Farm Labor from 1900- 1975.

Chapters include “Land Policy and the Principle of Equality of States”, “Settlement of the Prairie and Lake Plains”, and “Agriculture in the Middle West and the Granger and Greenback Movements”.

Merk includes maps outlining road and railroad development, which crops were produced when and where, treaty cessions and population growth, amongst others. By reading his book, you may understand why your ancestor went where when. For instance, the Homestead Act was legislated in 1862 and encouraged many people to migrate into the Middle West areas, including Kent County, Michigan where my ancestor Benjamin W Ellison went early in 1863 to farm his free 160 acres.

I must add a note of caution, though, as Merk engages in offensive and racist views at times about American Indians, even referring to Indian women as “squaws” — a deragotory and offensive term. He tends to stereotype American Indians as being the simple savage and his explanations of why he thinks American Indians acted in the manner they did with white people often falls very far short of the truth. Fortunately, Merk does acknowledge that American Indian lands were gained unethically and immorally. Merk died in 1997 when 90 years old and was under the tutelage of Frederick Jackson Turner. He taught history at Harvard University for years. If you can look past this problem in the book, the information will assist you in your research of your family’s history.

Cemetery Readings

10 Oct

I was a first-time cemetery reader recently. I enjoyed hanging out with the silent ones, and there were a few things I learned about the fine art of cemetery readings for genealogical societies.

  • Take a clip board and a couple of writing instruments
  • Have a water bottle and a snack with you
  • Wear work gloves
  • Wear comfortable walking shoes that can get dirty
  • Be ready with a trowel, and possibly even, a shovel. Some readers take a broom, I used my gloved hand

The headstones may be buried. They may be beneath upwards of 6 to 8″ of dirt and sod. Most of the headstones will be covered with debris.You will need to uncover the marker enough to read it.

Remember in the Jewish sections, to be particularly respectful of the stones left upon the grave marker. The stones and rocks were left there on purpose.

There will be mistakes you find on the original transcription, if you are updating, and you will find grave markers that should not have been missed the first time through.

Sometimes there are additional markings and names and dates on the backsides of tombstones, so you must read both sides.

Have fun!