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St. Patrick’s Day

St. Patrick's Day

Growing up I didn’t really pay much attention to St. Patrick’s Day. I didn’t know of any Irish ancestors. Green is not my color. It was a holiday I just didn’t connect with.

Little did I know, I am Irish on my mom’s side of the family! My 3x great-grandparents James and Catherine Moore immigrated to Canada from Ireland. They settled in Ontario where they raised five children.

It was their granddaughter Etta who would them immigrate to the United States.

Etta Moore McCallum
Etta Moore McCallum, circa 1908.

I still don’t celebrate St. Patrick’s Day per say, but I am proud of my Irish ancestors! Without researching my family history, I never would have known about my connection to Ireland, one of the reasons researching my family is important to me.

Thanks for reading!

Until next time,

Meredith

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52ancestors

52 Ancestors: Lucky

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On 6 April 1917, the United States declared war on Germany. My great-grandfather, Chester Crowe, had just turned 22. I doubt the war had little impact on him at first.

On 16 February 1918, Chester married Myrtle Crowe in Vancouver, Washington.

chester and myrtle marriage
The marriage certificate of Chester Crowe and Myrtle Sanford.

(I love looking up where my ancestors lived. The Morgan Hotel no longer exists, and Myrtle’s address is now a Walgreens.)

However, on the 24 June 1918, Chester enlisted in the United States army.

Chester Crowe, WW1
Chester Crowe, 1918

He was sent to France, where he fought in the Argonne offensive, the final battle of the war.

Enlistment Record_back of Discharge papers
The back of his discharge papers, which list his service.

Private Chester Crowe left France on 24 June 1919 from Brest, arriving in Hoboken, New Jersey on 5 June aboard the USS Patricia.

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Passenger list featuring Chester Crowe on his return to the U.S.

Chester is lucky. He went to fight in France and was not wounded. Over 26,000 U.S. soldiers were killed and nearly 96,000 wounded, and he was not among them. Over 1.2 million American soldiers fought in the Meuse-Argonne offensive, and Chester returned home unscathed.

Chester and Myrtle went on to have two children, son Merle and daughter Veva (my paternal grandmother). He lived a long life, dying on 2 December 1972 at the age of 77.

This story is one of the ones on my tree that amaze me. Had something gone wrong, I may not be here. Thanks for allowing me to share it!

You can find all my 52 Ancestors post through the tag below.

As always, you can find me on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. You can also email me: familyhistoryfood [at] gmail.com.

I also have a vintage site: familyhistoryfood.etsy.com.

Until next time,

Meredith

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52ancestors

52 Ancestors: Strong Woman

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Let me introduce you to my great-great-grandmother, Dorothea Wilhemine Alder, Dora for short.

Dora was born on 10 December 1858 in Kiel, Schleswig-Holstein, Germany, the daughter of Ernst Johann Martin Adler and Catharina Margaretha Ohlsen. I know nothing of her childhood, if she had any siblings, or how long her parents lived. The first record I have of her is of her marriage to Hermann Peter Borchert, on the 27 May 1885 in Kiel.

dora and hermann marriage
The marriage record of Dora Adler and Hermann Borchert, in the original German.

The next day, Dora and Hermann left from the port in Bremen, and arrived in New York on 15 June 1885. She is even listed by her maiden name on the ship’s manifest. They were processed through Castle Garden.

dora and hermann rec

I think it is amazing enough that she was married the day before immigrating to a new country, but she was also pregnant! Nearly three weeks on a transatlantic ship, entering the port in New York, and then settling in a new country. A strong woman, indeed.

Dora gave birth to their first daughter, my great-grandmother Ida, on 23 October 1885 in Lansing, Michigan. Dora and Hermann traveled over 4000 miles from the time they were married to where they had their first child.

Dora, Hermann, and Ida would move to Cincinnati, Ohio, where they would add five children to their family. The family then moved to Indianapolis, and later Toledo, before making the move to San Diego.

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The family in the 1900 census. Notice the incorrect birth year for their daughter Ida.

Dora died in San Diego on 1 November 1926, at the age of 67. She is buried nearly 5600 miles from where she was born and married.

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Herman (he dropped the extra “n”) and Dora’s headstone, at Mount Hope Cemetery in San Diego. 

A strong woman on my family tree! If Dora had not made her trip, I wouldn’t be here, and that amazes me.

Thank you for reading about my great-great-grandma! If you happen to know more about her, especially a picture, let’s get in touch!

You can find all my 52 Ancestors post through the tag below.

As always, you can find me on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. You can also email me: familyhistoryfood [at] gmail.com.

I also have a vintage site: familyhistoryfood.etsy.com.

Until next time,

Meredith

 

 

 

52ancestors

52 Ancestors: Where There’s A Will

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When I research my family history, I run into various people who make the same mistake: confusing my maternal great-grandfather William McCallum with someone of the same name. It’s an easy mistake to make if you aren’t paying close attention: they were born around the same time, lived in the same state, and died within a few years of each other. However, they were different people, and so for this week’s post, I want to tell a little about my William McCallum.

William McCallum was born on 16 September 1872 in Carleton Place, Ontario, Canada. I don’t know much about his life in Canada, but he did lose his mother Margaret when he was 4, and then his father Thomas when he was 13.

1881 canada census
William McCallum listed on the 1881 Canadian census.

The first record I have for him in the United States is in 1904 on a Declaration of Intention. He actually filled out 3 of these (that I know of): this one, 1905, and one right before he was naturalized.

1904 intention
His first Declaration of Intention.

He married by great-grandmother Etta Moore on 10 October 1905 in Orillia, Washington. Etta was born in Perth, Ontario, and it appears they immigrated to the U.S. together before they married.

William and Etta marriage
William and Etta’s marriage certificate.

William and Etta had two sons: Donald Sinclair (born 29 August 1906 in Seattle) and my grandfather, William Gordon (born 27 November 1907 in Seattle). When their children were little, the family traveled back and forth to Victoria, B.C., as William was one of the workers who built the sea wall. William eventually became a U.S. citizen in 1914, after one more Declaration of Intention.

Many of the papers around this time list his address in Seattle, including his World War I registration.

WW1 reg WM
WWI registration card

The cool thing is, the house is still there! When in Seattle last summer, I managed to snap this photo:

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my family once lived there! photographed in August 2017.

By 1920, the family had moved to Sumner, a small town south of Seattle, where William is listed as a farmer on the census in 1920, 1930, and 1940.

1930 census
1930 census, with William, Etta, and my grandfather William (who went by his middle name, Gordon).

In August 1951, my grandparents and their two children (including my mom, Peggy), moved to Hillsboro, Oregon. My grandfather couldn’t find a job in Seattle, so he came here and lived in a boarding house for a while. After failing to get another house, they ended up buying a house in the country in Hillsboro. William and Etta followed soon after (my mom is unsure if it was at the same time or very soon after), as they couldn’t take care of themselves. They lived in their own separate house that was connected to the home my grandparents bought.

William died in Hillsboro on 7 February 1953. He is interred at the Powers Woodlawn Abbey Mausoleum in Sumner, Washington, along with Etta, who died just two month later. (He did not die in 1958 in Washington, contrary to some of the records attributed to him).

Now wouldn’t it be cool to have a picture of him? He’s the only one of my great-grandparents who I do not have a photo of!

Thanks for reading about my William McCallum! I think it is important that he has his own identity, and not the incorrect ones floating around the interwebs.

You can find all my 52 Ancestors post through the tag below.

As always, you can find me on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. You can also email me: familyhistoryfood [at] gmail.com.

You can also sign up for our newsletter: http://eepurl.com/bXnfav.

I also have a vintage site: familyhistoryfood.etsy.com.

Until next time,

Meredith

 

 

 

52ancestors

52 Ancestors: Heirloom

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I was looking at old pictures, and came across a picture of my maternal grandma, Pauline Gall. For her senior picture, she had a lovely picture taken, and we still have the dress.

Pauline Gall high school graduation 1934?
Pauline Gall’s senior picture, circa 1934.

I posted this photo to my Instagram page, where it was reposted by SaveFamilyPhotos. It received many comments, and some suggestions on how to display the dress. (Also, many  comments about how my grandma looks like Kirsten Dunst).

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Pauline Gall’s dress.

Some suggested cutting the dress up (nope, it is in great condition, and frankly I could see one of my nieces taking photos or getting married in it some day). Some suggested donating it (but I would like to hold onto it). Two suggestions remain: displaying it on a dress form, or putting it into a shadow box, both of which I am considering.

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Close up.

The dress is blush in color, and has a pink sash. The detail is eyelets and embroidery. The dress itself is sheer; a slip would have been worn. It’s in great condition for being over 80 years old!

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Such great detail.

Now to figure out how to display it, and not put it back in the truck it came from! If anyone has any ideas or tips on how to display such a piece, please let me know!

You can find all my 52 Ancestors post through the tag below.

As always, you can find me on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. You can also email me: familyhistoryfood [at] gmail.com.

You can also sign up for our newsletter: http://eepurl.com/bXnfav.

I also have a vintage site: familyhistoryfood.etsy.com.

Until next time,

Meredith

52ancestors

52 Ancestors: Valentine

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Okay, I am posting this 52 Ancestors post early…

BUT, it’s because it includes a recipe! And since Valentine’s Day is on Wednesday, I wanted to give people time to make these delicious cookies.

My mom has a cookie for every holiday. As a holiday approached, us kids would come home from school to cookies laid out across the counter. So when I thought about this week’s prompt – Valentine – I immediately thought of her cookies.

This recipe comes from the Betty Crocker Cooky Book. The copy we have was actually my  maternal grandma’s, given to her by her mother on January 2, 1964, in honor of her 47th birthday. My mom says she first made these in high school.

Betty Crocker Cooky Bookbetty crocker cooky book inscription

The recipe used is not specifically meant for Valentine’s Day, but my mom would cut them into hearts and top them with pink icing. They are light and flavorful, and one of my all-time favorite cookies.

Valentine's Day Cookies

AUSTRIAN CREAM COOKIES: (makes about 4 dozen, we usually double the batch and make bigger cookies)

Ingredients:

2 eggs
1 cup sugar
1 cup heavy whipping cream
3 3/4 cups flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon of flour

Beat eggs until light. Add sugar gradually; blend in cream. Mix in flour, baking powder, salt. Chill for 1 hour.

Heat oven to 375 degrees. Roll out cookies 1/4 to 3/8 inches thick (I like a nice thick cookie). Bake 10-13 minutes and cool on a wire rack. Top with icing recipe (below).

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Fun fact, my dad had this rolling pin when my parents got married! It belonged to his paternal grandma, Cora.

If your oven runs hot, you will need less baking time. I baked mine for 8 minutes for the large ones (as pictured), and 7 minutes for smaller ones. They need to be pale brown on the top and will turn dark faster, so keep on eye on them.

Austrian Cream Cookies recipe

I love the comment of “Good!” in my mom’s handwriting, and the doubled measurements in my sister’s. This is a well-loved cookbook!

Once you have them mixed, chilled, baked, and cooled, you can ice them. The icing is easy and oh-so-good. But the cookies are delicious without them as well, if you are impatient.

EASY CREAMY ICING:

1 cup sifted powdered sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 tablespoon cream (I used more, it needs to be spreadable)

Blend sugar, salt, and vanilla. Add cream and mix. You can add more cream if it is too thick. Add a drop or two of food coloring, if desired. Ice on cooled cookies.

 

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And enjoy! They keep best in an air-tight container.

Valentine's Day cookies

So pretty, served on my great-grandma Etta’s china.

Thanks for reading all about our little Valentine tradition! I hope you make these cookies, they are wonderful!

You can find all my 52 Ancestors post through the tag below.

As always, you can find me on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. You can also email me: familyhistoryfood [at] gmail.com.

You can also sign up for our newsletter: http://eepurl.com/bXnfav.

I also have a vintage site: familyhistoryfood.etsy.com.

Until next time,

Meredith

 

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52ancestors

52 Ancestors: Favorite Name

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This week’s prompt – Favorite Name – was a tough one for me. I come from a long line of boring names. (I told my mom of this week’s prompt, who replied, “which John are you going to write about?”😂)  So instead, I have opted to write about someone who loved their unique name, my paternal grandmother Veva.

Veva Loene Crowe was born on September 29, 1922 in Salem, Oregon to Chester and Myrtle Crowe. She loved to tell me about her birth story: she was born two days after her youngest maternal aunt, Marie. Her mother Myrtle assisted with the birth of her sister, and then gave birth with the assistance of her mother. Marie and my grandma grew up like sisters.

George Dyer and great grandchildren

My grandma as a baby, with her brother Merle, cousins Delva and Walter Levengood, and their great-grandfather George Dyer. Delva and Walter’s mother was Eva.

My grandma loved her name, because it was unique. She told me it was name her mother had come up with, to honor to women: her dad’s sister Vera and her mom’s sister Eva, combining the two names into Veva.

Chester Crow with his sisters, Vera and Violet

Chester, Vera, and Violet Crowe, circa 1910.

Eva, Myrtle,

Eva, Myrtle, and Lester Sanford, circa 1900.

Growing up, my grandma would tell me how she loved her name because it was unique to her, that no one else had it. I remember being at a store with her when I was younger and stumbling across Viva paper towels, and being stunned that it was only one letter away from her name! I recall her being less than impressed; after all, it was not her name, spelled the same way.

Veva Loene Crowe

Veva as a child. This was her favorite picture of herself.

As I got older, my grandma asked that I name one of my children after her, to keep her name alive. “A middle name is fine!” she claimed. (In hindsight, she picked the wrong grandchild to ask, as I have no children, but my brother, sister, and one of my cousins each have three.)  However, I am happy to have a platform to share the story behind the name she loved.

Thanks for taking the time to read the story about my grandma’s name! You can find all my 52 Ancestors post through the tag below.

As always, you can find me on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. You can also email me: familyhistoryfood [at] gmail.com.

You can also sign up for our newsletter: http://eepurl.com/bXnfav.

I also have a vintage site: familyhistoryfood.etsy.com.

Until next time,

Meredith

 

 

 

 

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