What does this mean? Anyone know.

I’ve been going through person by person, census by census. I’m trying to do this all correctly which means if something comes up, then I have to ask questions. I’m currently trying to cite all the census information for William Harmon Mays and his family. He and his young daughter moved to Ohio after his first wife died. In Ohio, he then met and married my Grandfather’s mother, Iva Belle Moyer, when she was hired to look after his daughter. This is all per my Grandma.

So now I’m left with getting all the factual evidence. I may never get “evidence” for the nanny part, but I can at least document the marriages and death of the first wife, right? Maybe not. We’ll see.

There are some trees out there that give the marriage date of William and Sarah Elizabeth McDaniels. Until I find the documentation, I’m going to leave that off, but the date sounds right. So at least I have a place to look. The not promising part of the picture is that Kentucky didn’t regulate recording marriages until 1958. So I may be out of luck, but hopefully there will be something on a local level.

My next step was trying to actually confirm with the census records the places William would have been at anyway. That’s when I ran into this.


Hard to read, I know. Maybe a local visit will turn up a better copy too. Basically what I’m seeing is that Elizabeth is marked as William H’s wife, with daughter Mary J. All the ages fit perfectly. William’s parents are living next door. So this is the right family. However Elizabeth is crossed out. So I’ve always assumed this means that she died before the census day. However, I want an official answer on why she would be crossed off. This could be a clue as to what happened.

So I went to Ancestry’s 1910 census main page and started reading everything they give about the census.


What I gather from this instruction is that the enumerators were to still count people who died between April 15, 1910 and when the enumerator showed up. This is the most logical explanation I could find for why Elizabeth would be crossed out. This family was counted by the enumerator on May 3, 1910. It’s a little sad knowing that Elizabeth would have died within the month, heck it could have been that week!

If there is anyone out there reading this that knows for sure this is why Elizabeth would have been crossed out, please let me know! I will make a note of it so I can try and search death records for her.


That is if it was recorded. Hopefully a trip to Kentucky can solve this problem.