Monday, January 14, 2019

Lowell Copeland Lived in a Church

It recently occurred to me that I had never looked for my great-grandfather, Lowell Copeland, in a city directory, which is a genealogical source that can provide different information than a census, a vital record, or a newspaper article, and if you're lucky, you can find an ancestor in consecutive years and see if there are any changes.

As I have previously shared at Grandfather's Occupation, Lowell Copeland was living in New Trier, Cook County, Illinois, between 1900 and 1920 and all three of his children were born there. By the time of the 1930 federal census, he was living in Michigan City, Indiana.

Lowell Copeland appeared in Chicago City Directories from 1897 to 1902, where he was listed as Asst Treasurer, Sullivan Machinery and resided in Winnetka. He appeared in the Evanston City Directory (living in Winnetka, a nearby suburb) from 1912 to 1922. 

Some time between 1922 and about 1926, Lowell moved to Michigan City, when his information might have been collected for the following year's city directory. His entry is in a gray rectangle in the image.

Caron's Directory of the City of Michigan City, Ind. for 1927-1928 (Louisville, Ky: Caron Directory Co., 1927), p. 131; digital image, Ancestry.com (https://search.ancestry.com/search/db.aspx?dbid=2469 : accessed 10 January 2019).

His name was Lowell Copeland; I'm not sure why the middle initial T appears here; his son (my grandfather) was Lowell Townsend Copeland.
Ethel M. (Greeley) Copeland was his wife.
His occupation was pur agt: purchasing agent for the Sullivan Machinery Company, which I wrote about at Grandfather's Occupation.
Lowell and Ethel lived at 614 Franklin. Well, the first thing I like to do when I see an address in a city directory is to search for it on a map.

Saturday, December 22, 2018

Helen Hunter Follansbee ~ 52 Ancestors #51

I am participating in this year's 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks writing challenge from Amy Johnson Crow.

In a roundabout way, I'm writing about a second great-aunt of mine, Helen Rainey Hunter (1886-1939).

My great-grandfather, Percy Earle Hunter, was the second of ten children of James Hunter and Mary Freeland. Mary died in March 1902 and James died in October 1902, and his obituary reports that since his wife's death, "he has never been the same man he was before."

When their parents died, Percy took responsibility for many of his younger siblings, the youngest of whom were 10 (Curtis Carr Hunter), 14 (Mary Lois Hunter), and 16 (Helen Rainey Hunter). (I still need to look to see if there are official guardianship records.)

Therefore when Percy's sister Helen Rainey Hunter got married in 1909, it was "Mr. and Mrs. Percy E. Hunter" who announced the marriage of their sister.

"Marriage Announcement," The Pittsburgh Press, 15 October 1909; digital image, Newspapers.com (https://www.newspapers.com/image/141365338 : accessed 22 December 2018), p. 24, col. 3.

William and Helen (Hunter) Follansbee lived in Pittsburgh their entire lives and had three children: William U. Follansbee III (b. 1912), and twins, Lois Hunter Follansbee and Mary Freeland Follansbee (b. 1915). Although two of these children married (William and Mary), there were no grandchildren.

Helen and her children attended my grandparents' 1931 wedding, signing the guest list and appearing in the group photo.

I believe she is behind and between my grandmother and her father in the 1931 wedding photo. This would be just before her 45th birthday. Her older brother, Percy, is 58 in this photo. Grandmother was 24.

Helen (Hunter) Copeland, Helen (Hunter) Follansbee, Percy Earle Hunter

The only other record I could find was Helen's death certificate, which reported that she died at age 53 of colon cancer. ["Pennsylvania Death Certificates, 1906-1966," Ancestry.com (https://search.ancestry.com/search/db.aspx?dbid=5164 : accessed 22 December 2018), certificate file no. 76326, record for Helen Hunter Follansbee, d. 24 September 1939.]

If any Hunter family members have any memories or photos of this Follansbee family, please let me know in the comments.

Friday, December 7, 2018

Winter and Ice Skating ~ 52 Ancestors #49

I am participating in this year's 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks writing challenge from Amy Johnson Crow. Each week has an optional writing prompt and this week's writing prompt is Winter.

These are my parents in January 1964 (if the "Jan 64" date was close to when the photo was taken). My dad, Charlie Pyle, loved to ice skate and we all learned how to skate soon after learning to walk.


Looks like it was cold enough for the pond in Dedham (Massachusetts) to freeze well enough for skating early that winter!

Saturday, November 24, 2018

The 1787 Will of Elias Lyman ~ 52 Ancestors #47

I am participating in this year's 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks writing challenge from Amy Johnson Crow. Each week has an optional writing prompt and this week's writing prompt is Thankful.

I am thankful that I am currently participating in the ProGen Study Groups.

My most recent assignment was to transcribe a will or deed. I chose a New Hampshire ancestor whom I have not researched very much and transcribed his will. I am thankful that I have had this learning experience because it has (1) shown me the importance of transcribing every word of an old handwritten document and (2) helped me clarify the number of children of the writer of this will.

My 5th great-grandfather, Elias Lyman, was born in Enfield, Grafton County, New Hampshire, on 14 April 1754. [1] He married Ruth Griswold on 30 January 1776 in Enfield. [2] The only other sources I have for him are authored works: a 1935 Griswold family genealogy [3] and an 1872 Lyman family genealogy. [4]

Two of the children of Elias and Ruth were found in New Hampshire vital records:
Ruth Lyman (b. 7 January 1777 in Enfield)
Elias Lyman (b. 5 or 6 July 1778 in Lebanon)

Then there is Lucinda Lyman (born about 1784), my 4th great-grandmother, who married Thomas G. Wells, and two other children mentioned in the published genealogies: Lucy Lyman and Harry Lyman. The Lyman genealogy also included Roswell Lyman, but doesn't specifically list him as a child of Elias and Ruth. (And since the Griswold genealogy based its information on this family from the Lyman genealogy, it doesn't include Roswell Lyman.) Both genealogies included Tryphena, born 10 August 1810.

However, the will, written and proved in 1787, means that Elias Lyman died 23 years before Tryphena Lyman was born and therefore couldn't have been her father.

Section of 1787 will of Elias Lyman in which he lists his children

He referred to his beloved sons: Elias Roswell and Henry (with no punctuation between the names) and Elias inserted before and above Roswell. He referred to his beloved daughters, Ruth, Lucy, Lucinda (with punctuation). However, using the will and continuing with researching from the hints from the genealogies, I am surmising that he had six children: Ruth, Elias, Roswell, Lucy, Henry, and Lucinda, but I still need to explore each of these families to confirm the birth order.

Wednesday, November 14, 2018

Samuel Sewall Greeley: Always Bearded ~ 52 Ancestors #45

I am participating in this year's 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks writing challenge from Amy Johnson Crow. Each week has an optional writing prompt and last week's writing prompt was Bearded.

A quick glance and I can see that I have a few bearded ancestors. Following are the photos I have of my second great-grandfather, Samuel Sewall Greeley. It appears that he had a beard throughout his entire life.

He was born in Boston in 1824. This is a photograph of a photograph. He has quite a few descendants so hopefully the original is with another descendant.


He came to Chicago in 1853 and married his first wife in 1855. After her death in 1864, he returned to Massachusetts to marry a cousin in 1866.