Mysterious Ancestors

I’ve been so disorganized in the last few weeks. I recognize now that’s why I don’t feel like I’ve gotten anything accomplished. However, I have many hours of television on my DVR to catch up on and a few hours to spare. So I’m taking that time to sit down and look over some of my current mysteries. I’m on a Mays family hiatus, in case you were wondering. That two death certificates thing just through me completely off my game.

George Yohn / George Thorward

Okay, he’s my biggest mystery. I’ve discussed him with myself and others many times since I had my latest breakthrough. Here are the facts about George Thorward.

  1. He is most definitely George Thorward through my Great-Great Grandfather’s life. I don’t have Lewis’ birth or death records but as our family is most notably Thorward, I’ve got to assume we’re Thorwards.
  2. In the 1900 and 1910 censuses they ask for year of Immigration. George answered 1865[1. 1910 United States Census; Caldwell, Essex, New Jersey; ED 156; Dwelling: 38, Family: 39;] and 1867[1. 1900 United States Census; Caldwell, Essex, New Jersey; ED 215; Dwelling: 133, Family: 145;].
  3. There was no George Thorward in 1870 Caldwell, New Jersey.
  4. There was a George Yohn living next door to Josephine Doremus in 1870. George Thorward’s wife, whom he married in 1871.
  5. I found a marriage record for George Yohn and Josephine Doremus on the New Jersey Archives website.
  6. George Thorward was in the tobacco business his whole life. George Yohn is listed as a cigar maker’s apprentice in 1870.[3. 1870 United States Census; Caldwell, Essex, New Jersey; Dwelling: 118, Family: 134;]

The things I’m doing to resolve this problem:

  1. I sent away for the marriage record between George Yohn and Josephine Doremus to see what it says.
  2. I’m making a list of the dates of all these Caldwell/Essex County events so that if I get a chance in July, I’ll be ready to go to the local library in New Jersey.

William H Moore

William Moore runs a very close second to George Thorward when it comes to mysteries. Here’s what I know about him:

  1. He first shows up in 1870 census in Chicago with his wife and oldest three children[4. 1870 United States Census; Chicago Ward 9, Cook, Illinois; Dwelling: 1570, Family 2102;]. My Great-Great Grandfather isn’t born until 1871.
  2. Through city directories I know that William lived in Chicago from 1866 to 1870. This might explain why Cook County didn’t have a record of Robert’s birth in 1871.
  3. He immigrated to the United States in either 1858 or 1859[5. 1900 United States Census; Brooklyn Ward 25, Kings, New York; ED 441; Dwelling: 115, Family 252;] [6. 1910 United States Census; Brooklyn Ward 25, Kings, New York; ED 696; Dwelling: 241, Family: 461;]
  4. In 1920, William and his daughter Mary are living at 7 Myrtle Ave in Caldwell, New Jersey.[7. 1920 United States Census; Caldwell, Essex, New Jersey; ED 22; Dwelling: 366, Family: 382;]
  5. I found dates of death penciled onto the back of the Brooklyn Cemetery deed. William’s is given as July 28, 1928.
  6. Caldwell, New Jersey, July 28, 1928 did not return a record when I sent away for it.
  7. I don’t know if his wife immigrated at the same time as him or if they married after. She died in 1896, before the immigration question on the census.

What I need to do to solve his mysteries?

  1. I need to fill the gaps between his estimated birth of 1836 and 1870. His daughter Mary was born in 1865 in New York. His next child was born in 1868 in Chicago.
  2. When I go to look up things in New Jersey, I have to check myself to see if he did in fact die in Caldwell or some other part of Essex County.
  3. I want to find an obituary for him to see if it mentions anything about his early life.
  4. I should look in New York and see if there is a marriage record for him and his wife, Mary.
  5. I should also look and see if there is a naturalization record for him. In 1910, he says he is a naturalized citizen. There should be a record of it somewhere. I just don’t know if his very generic name will be a road block.


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