Hug Your Local Library

My encounter with the Clark County [Ohio] Public Library should have been the first clue. I wrote them to order a batch of obituaries I found on the RB Hayes Obituary Index (a source no Ohio researcher should be without). At the end of the note I added that I was hoping to find an obit for John KOHL, whose death date had been narrowed down to sometime between the 1900 US Census and 1904. I thought this was overly optimistic of me, but if you don’t ask, you don’t get.

Well, I sure enough got. Not only did I get the obituary, I got a photocopy of a register page of deaths in Springfield, showing the record of his death. This is material that a respected professional firm didn’t come up with in a microfilm search of the FHL’s Clark County records.

But yesterday I was preparing for some film to come into my local FHC, so I was trying to set up the correct sources in TMG ahead of time. I went looking for the Greene County (Ohio) archives on the web. I found them here… and discovered that the early birth and death records originally generated by the Probate Court are available online!

Now, as pleasant a surprise as this is, I probably shouldn’t complain. But I wouldn’t be the technologist I am if I didn’t have better ways to do things. 🙂 The software they appear to be using to serve up the images looks similar to that used by the NEHGS, and I find its lack of drag and drop support annoying beyond words. Instead of being able to move a rectangle representing the visible subset of the enlarged page, one has to click. And wait. And click. And wait. Heck, my browser handles large graphical files better than that. Just serve up the raw images and let me at them, ok?

Complaints notwithstanding, I see lots of browsing (and clicking, and waiting) in my future, to see if I can find the TIERNEYs born in the village of Osborn.

Tombstone Tuesday: John KELLY (1840-1905)

John Kelly's grave marker

Kelly, John 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.

John KELLY is my second great-grandfather. He’s one of the more elusive characters in my tree… at least of the ones whose names I know. Thanks to a fortuitous error by an overzealous census enumerator in 1920, I know he and his wife hail from County Tipperary, Ireland. However, while he’s consistently listed as naturalized, I’m not convinced that the naturalization papers found in Darke County, Ohio are actually for him, because at the time they were filed, he was living in Miami County! What about naturalizations there, you say? None for John Kelly! And then there’s the mystery of his eldest daughter, who is consistently (across six censuses) listed as being born in Canada… well after the dates given for John’s immigration. (All her siblings were born in Ohio or Indiana, which makes sense as they were living near the state line.) Did John go back to Ireland to get his wife, and take enough time at it for their first child to be born on the way back? Mysteries.

Tombstone Tuesday: Johanna LEAHEY KELLY (1848 – 1894)

Johanna Leahey Kelly's grave marker

Kelly, Johanna 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.

Johanna LEAHEY KELLY is my second great-grandmother, another of the ancestors I didn’t know I had before I started this project. I have a photograph of her ten surviving children, but none of her. Not yet, anyway. Scanfest ahoy!

I particularly appreciate how these posts make me review my use of the evidence. For example, until I looked hard at this image, I had Johanna’s birth date as ‘c. 1849’. Oops!

Piecing Together the WEYRICHs

Today’s research is mostly not visible in my database, because what I have been doing is trying to make sense of the WEYRICH (WEYRICK, WAYRICH, WIRICK, WEYRAUCH, etc, etc) families in Dayton, Ohio between 1850 and 1930. My preferred method for a quick start on this job is to spend a lot of time on Ancestry with the “add this record…” button, and save the wrangling with TMG until I think I have something worth recording.

Phillip John WEYRICH (b. 17 Feb 1844, m. 20 Dec 1870, d. 10 Jan 1906) is a second great-grandfather of mine. His obituary lauds him as the first pretzel-baker in Dayton. He had four daughters and a son… so why, I ask, are there so many confounding WEYRICHs in Dayton in this time period?

Here’s a page from the 1891-1892 Williams’ Dayton Directory. (Writing that sentence caused me to take a quick peek at, the best book search engine available. The only copy of a Williams’ Dayton Directory of this era available for less than $250 has several missing pages. I guess I can resist the temptation.) (Resisting parenthetical remarks is quite another matter.) (Oh, yes, the original selling price? $4.)

Williams' Dayton Directory for 1891-92
Williams' Dayton Directory for 1891-92

Right, we have two Adams (counting the WEYRAUCH) and two Phillips, and three of them are bakers. Fortunately I can pick my direct ancestor out of this mob, because great-grandmother Bertha Elizabeth is also listed at 501 S. Warren.

This is good and useful, because Adam WEYRICH had twelve children—so says a note in the Dayton Metro Library’s online obituary index; I haven’t received a copy of the obit itself yet. Census data from 1880 and 1900 agrees. I expect this family is the source of many of the Dayton WEYRICHs of later generations. Unfortunately no two of the death certificates (via a quick lookup on agrees on exactly what Adam’s wife’s name was (the two censuses agree on Barbara), but that is a mystery for another day.

The question that intrigues me: Are Adam and Phillip brothers?

Wordless Wednesday: The KELLY Siblings

The KELLY Siblings
The KELLY Siblings

TIERNEY, Margaret Theresa KELLY (1872-1911), seated third from left. Robert Emmett KELLY, standing far left. Also present: Catherine A., Ellen C., Thomas Francis, Mary, Edward Joseph, Anna S., Cecelia and Josephine KELLY. Photographed c. 1908 by unknown photographer, Union City, Indiana. Privately held by Jean Marie Diaz, [ADDRESS FOR PRIVATE USE,] Linden California. 2009.

Submitted to the 10th Edition of I Smile For the Camera at Shades of the Departed.