McKinney, Herbert Vincent grave marker, Calvary Cemetery, Dayton, Montgomery, Ohio, USA; photograph by Richard Holt, 7 Aug 2009. Digital copy privately held by Jean Marie Diaz, [ADDRESS FOR PRIVATE USE], Linden, California. 2009.
Herbert is Nellie‘s husband. Until I received this photo, I was missing his death date — it seems to fall between the cracks of the otherwise copiously available death data from Ohio.
McKinney, Nellie Tierney grave marker, Calvary Cemetery, Dayton, Montgomery, Ohio, USA; photograph by Richard Holt, 7 Aug 2009. Digital copy privately held by Jean Marie Diaz, [ADDRESS FOR PRIVATE USE], Linden, California. 2009.
Nellie is the biological aunt and adoptive mother of my grandfather John Herbert TIERNEY, and the only great-grandparent I ever met.
Two sisters and a daughter-in-law on a warm summer’s day. Bess, on the left, never married, but you can see a brooch at the top of her dress. Pauline, my grandmother, sports her wedding ring. Nellie, Bess’ sister and Pauline’s mother-in-law, shows her wedding ring, watch, and three strands of pearls. Mom and I think this was taken in the back yard of Nellie’s house.
Here are the pearls on display again, in the formal portrait taken for her 50th wedding anniversary in 1955:
Going through Grandma’s jewelry box was eternally attractive to a magpie child. Along with the big bright costume jewelry and the beautiful rings, were these pearls. They had an intricate silver box clasp. I remember handling the necklace and wearing it, even, but I don’t have the pearls now, haven’t for years. I hope my mother managed to rescue them from the chaos of my college years, but I haven’t had the nerve to ask. They may be gone forever. (I took better care of the is-it-aquamarine-or-is-it-blue-topaz ring my mother handed down to me from Grandma; the stone, whatever it is, is too soft to take daily wear, but I know where it is.)
Written for the 16th edition of Smile for the Camera! carnival.
The word prompt for the 16th Edition of Smile For The Camera is “Bling, ancestor Bling.” I am always drawn to the beautiful jewelry worn by our ancestors in old photographs. The locket that was your Great Grandmother’s treasure, the pocket watch proudly displayed by a male ancestor, the beautiful crosses of old, and the children with their tiny bracelets. While not many of our ancestors were wealthy enough to own multiple pieces of jewelry, there was the one good piece that held sentimental value. Some of us have been fortunate enough to inherit those treasures. Show us a photograph of your ancestor wearing their “Bling,” or photographs of the pieces you have inherited. Admission is free with every photograph!
Tierney, Margaret grave marker, St Mary’s Catholic Cemetery, Union City, Randolph, Indiana, USA; photograph by Suzanne Stamper-Youmans, 23 Apr 2008. Digital copy privately held by Jean Marie Diaz, [ADDRESS FOR PRIVATE USE], Linden, California. 2009.
I had known the family story that my grandfather had been adopted as a small child because his mother had died, but I hadn’t been clear on the relationships involved. The evidence came together bit by bit, but now we know that Margaret married William James TIERNEY in Apr 1908, and my grandfather was born in Dec 1908. Margaret died of TB (“from a bad cow,” my mother theorizes) 11 Sep 1911, but not before she had arranged for her son to be cared for by Will’s sister Nellie TIERNEY MCKINNEY and her husband Herbert Vincent MCKINNEY, who eventually adopted him. The formal adoption played a big part in a family tussle over the estate of another of Will and Nellie’s siblings, but that’s another story that hasn’t been properly researched yet…