I received my order of records from the New Jersey State Archives on Saturday. The record you see above was too big to fit onto my scanner, so I tested out the app recommended to me for my iPhone. It worked pretty well! Especially under the conditions I was trying. It would have probably worked a bit better in daylight on a flat surface.
Anyway, onto the record. The record I sent for was the marriage record for George Yohn and Josephine Doremus. I’m currently trying to figure out if George Yohn is in fact George Thorward. What I like about the above record is that the marriage date fits with what I know for George and Josephine. I also like that Josephine Doremus is listed. There was another Josephine Doremus in the 1870 census but she was living in Newark and not Caldwell. In 1880 there is no trace of Josephine and George Yohn. Only Josephine and George Thorward. Everything about the above record fits with George Thorward except the Yohn last name. It is a bit disappointing to see the parents names listed as “Not Known” for George. Though it raises another question. Did George lose his parents when he was young? Did that prompt his immigration to America?
I did search the online index for name changes on the State Archives website but I found no trace of any Yohns or Thorwards. I’d love to get my hands on some local history books from the church or even the newspapers. My Grandpa told me that there is some stuff in local books about the Thorwards because they were integral in the Methodist Church of Caldwell.
Included in the envelope with my records was a note from the Archives. They explained to me that they included the entire page as counties were only required to report once a year the births, marriages, and deaths from their county. Individual records weren’t issued by the State until June 1, 1878. So the record they sent me is actualy for the whole period of May 1871 to May 1872. So to me that tells me, if another Josephine Doremus had married George Thorward in November of 1871, it most likely would also be listed on this page.
I’m getting closer and closer to confirming my assumption that there was a name change. Once that happens, I’ll have more questions. Was Thorward the original German name or was Yohn? Did George adapt Yohn when he immigrated and then wanted to change it back? Were the children born under the name Yohn? Will this impede me in finding their birth records?
Previous entries in the George Yohn craziness: