Question of the Week: Brickwalls... argg... Have you got one, and what do you need to knock it down?

+41 votes
3.1k views

Brickwalls...argg...Have you got one that's driving you crazy? What do you need to knock it down? Make sure to add the profile link and maybe you'll get some "Hammer Time"  help from an unlikely source.

asked in The Tree House by Deborah Collier G2G6 Mach 3 (37.4k points)
edited by Deborah Collier
My biggest brickwall has been hanging around for over 25 years. It is my great grandfather on my mother's side. He wasn't married to my great grandmother as far as I am aware. They had 5 children together. Baptism records show his name as Ramon Carey Webb, although his children knew him as Tom. His grandchildren called him Pops, and none of them know anything else about him. There are no records for a Ramon Carey Webb, and none for a Thomas Webb allegedly born around 1900. No death record exists for a Thomas Webb allegedly around 1975. It is all smoke and no mirrors and I have nothing to go on.

https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Webb-4914

Lexi
Lexi ~

Where did Thomas Webb live?
Hi Mary,

Thomas lived in the Dorset area. His eldest 2 children were born in Halstock and Hazlebury Bryan, the youngest 3 in Wimborne. My great grandmother's name was Doreen Lucy Udall.
My brick walls are everywhere. :/ but I haven't been searching for very long. One thing that is very very usefull though, and many don't think of it, is Facebook. Yeah, I said it. Facebook. Most cities and towns have a page, and often the libraries, historical, and  genealogical societies have groups and pages as well. It is totally free to ask and post "looking for" messages to the owners of the page and for the public to see. I found two direct sisters of my father that way- I made a "searching for the family of my father" page, and about a week later, an old lady in England was sitting at her computer, and searched for her brother on Facebook. I popped right up, and within hours, a phone call was made to Texas to another sister, and I was on the phone with family I never knew existed. Then, 12 hours after that, I got an email confirmation from a bio-half sister and VOILA! A whole new family!

Another group of folks that have been a godsend are the Masons. They keep very very good records as well. I have the ongoing elusive great grandfather, Clayton Bowden Duke Sr., and the only info I could find in California on him that wasn't census and voter registrations etc, was his name mentioned in the Pasadena newspaper about a big honor's get together held by the Pasadena Scottish Rite. Once again, Facebook message to the Pasadena Scottish Rite, and about 2 weeks later, records that confirmed membership along with a note of tranfer to San Gabriel, Ca. I'm yet to contact them, but Pasadena Scottish Rite was able to randomly help me with spousal info on a man who used to live in my house! He passed away and I found his education awards in my attic and wanted his family to have them. They saw my post, and gave me info. I live in Northern California, nowhere near Pasadena.

As much as Facebook is snubbed and petty, it has certainly become a very useful resource. I even was added to a DNA Duke group and have been able to connect and compare notes and exchange theories with the more open and willing family members. The "looking for" options are awesome, as well as the Search Angels who assist with more than just adoptee's, since many of them are genealogists.

Just a little thought to swish around that might help some of the folks struggling with the climb over their walls...
Erin, all good to know.

Thanx!
William Terkowski. Has a brother Nathan who was a plumber. Supposedly my father's father. Came from Hells Kitchen. Was in the military my grandmother Veronica Reilly was in the USO. His wife had been in sanitarium at some point, not sure if it was when they met but William and Veronica began a relationship that ended with her becoming pregnant with my father who was born in 1941. I don't the circumstances of the end of their affair or if he even knew she was pregnant. Veronica married and young Fred was adopted and raised by her husband. I found one census record out of tons of William Terkowski's, just one with a brother named Nathan and they were inmates at Hebron Orphan Asylum 1506, Manhattan Help if you can!!!
Any way to get ahold of records from ancient orphanage? Maybe the nearby historical society has possession?
I have my 4th great grandfather Lindsay Ray was born in 1805 in Scott Co., Va according to the marriage record for his second marriage.  Of course, that county didn't exist at that time . He also listed his father as being born in Scott Co., Va and his mother from TN. Based on his age he probably didn't realize that it would cause me all kinds of problems. At this time I am working on finding a direct line male descendant of Lindsay so that I can do several things. Show if he has a common direct line ancestor with the line that thinks he is their Lansea (which since she is listed as the daughter in a legal document they all want to ignore should be easy), determine if that direct line ancestor is connected to the person they claim he is descended from if Lindsay does turn out to be related, and find out who his parents really were based on DNA and research.

I have possibles but nothing to connect them at this point. Hoping the DNA will make the connection. Just trying to locate a direct male line descendant that is willing to do the test for me. Along with a couple others for some different lines that I am working on.

Its been particularly trying since my Dad's DNA is giving us some really good matches and we can't figure out where the connection is for this family.
Hang in there Sharon Ray! I am in the same boat. My father had his DNA done before he died in 2010. We matched several other Turners, but have not been able to find a common ancestor with most of them. We match with the Turners from our family that had their DNA also to confirm we all belonged.  Many others matched, but none have been able to find a common ancestor.  Some where down the line, I believe the oral history got  jumbled and someone got off track and continued to hand it down.  So it is like putting a puzzle together, one piece at a time.  I call it...digging up bones. Trying to put faces and names to ancestors as we find them, and more importantly, documenting each individual and generation. Good luck as you continue your mission.
Thanks Deborah!  I can't blame it on the oral history on this side of my family. This side doesn't have one or at least not one that anyone can remember. What's interesting is that we have found a family t hat we have a very strong match with from multiple people from multiple people in different branches of a particular family. They are in the right area but we've got no connection that we can find except the DNA and we have multiple matches that triangulates beautifily in not just one area on one chromosome.

We keep digging and working on things. Best of luck with your Turners!

56 Answers

+9 votes

The consensus internet opinion is that my 4th gr.grandpa, Conrad DuBois, died in Michigan. For many reasons, I know that is not true (See his bio). I need his burial location as he actually died in Seneca, Co. NY in June 1821. A copy of his Will, Seneca Co. petition for probate no. 355 proved Feb. 1822 would also be fantastic. Thanks. 

answered by Rod DuBois G2G6 Pilot (167k points)
edited by Rod DuBois
Mary Delamater?

Conrad Dubois of Fayette, Seneca Co., New York wrote his will 18 Dec1820. It was proved 11 Feb 1822. James S. Hicks was named executor.Source; Seneca County Wills, Court of Common Pleas: 355. SarahDubois/Hicks, wife of said James Hicks, is mentioned in the will as agranddaughter also, Mary/Polly Dubois/Stark, wife of Aaron Stark isalso mentioned as a granddaughter. Mary/Polly Dubois/Stark was unableto be found and Conrad Dubois' will and property was sold withoutgiving her the inheritance she was entitled to. She later in 1850petitioned Seneca Co. court to make the heirs that recieved her shareof her grandfather's inheritance, give over her share, but all theheirs were living in Michigan, as was she, at that time. Nothing cameof it in NY, unknown whether she was able to sue her siblings andparents for her inheritance that was due in Michigan. She was a widowat the time, then remarried, so her situation changed and she mightnot have pursued a suit or the siblings gave her what was coming toher in cash.
Hi b Paulson, Maria Delamater was Conrad's wife who preceded him in death. Thanks for the detail on his granddaughter, Mary. Do you have a source for the petition she filed that we could look up? It may at least reference the Will. Are you also a descendant?
+10 votes
Hi my biggest brick wall is Grant -4347 .  My very big thanks to Vincent Piazza and Doug Lockwood for all the sourcing , editing and creations of profiles they have done on my family. I have been able to find a great deal about my mum's side.  But my big problem is with Cathryn's parents. William and Isabella Grant.  I think Isabella may have been a Peacock at birth because a young man who was living with them had the name Archibald Peacock. My mum said the family all lived together so I thought he might have been a brother. Anyway there are 100s of William and Isabella Grants and a surprising amount of William Grants who married  women named Isabella.  I did find an Isabella Peacock Grant but her info was on Ancestry.com.  she was married to a William Grant. My income is limited.  If I got Ancestry I would have to give up the Collie and horse rescue donations I make.  I just can't justified that.  The funny thing is while trying to find my mum's ancestors I find my father's. My father 's 9th great aunt married Peacock.  I'm pretty inbred. Thanks for the post.
answered by Trudy Roach G2G6 Pilot (165k points)
Everyone on both my mother's and father's sides have Peacock somewhere with DNA matches. Plus everyone else under the sun who is related somehow. WHO ARE THE PEACOCKS, and WHAT DO THEY WANT FROM ME?!!!!

I'll be happy to take a peek on ancestry for you if you like, send me a private message with info. I'm still learning this site.
+11 votes
http://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Scheurer-42

That guy was born in Germany. I guess I'll never know who his parents were.

My DNA says that the line originated in Switzerland.

 

Betty
answered by Betty Fox G2G6 Pilot (112k points)
+9 votes
Lamb-1808  Moses Lamb just shows up in Rowan County, North Carolina.  One story is that his parents were from Maryland. Possible sibling named James.  Have worked the descendants with no clarity about Moses.  I need names of parents and their origins.
answered by Mary Nance G2G6 Mach 1 (17.4k points)
+10 votes
My biggest brick wall right now is trying to find out who Ann Poore's parents are. I know she married Jacob Hufhines (Hoffheinz family) on November 4, 1829 in Washington County, Tennessee and they moved to Kentucky where they had their children. (Thanks to census records and marriage records).

But Ann's parents are not mentioned on the marriage record and I cannot find a census record for her birth period in Tennessee (1807-1817) so I am just stuck. Someone suggested that her maiden name might not be Poore. I suppose that is a possibility.

Edit: Oops, here is a link to her profile.http://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Poore-549
answered by Jourdi Cleghorn G2G6 Mach 2 (25.9k points)
I have had some trouble with TN relatives as well.  One issue is that so many counties changed names at some point.  I assume you looked at all of TN?  If not it may be worthwhile to check out some neighboring counties just in case. She seems young for remarriage, but that is a good suggestion to check.  Any siblings or "neighbors" that show up on multiple censuses next to her (on the actual pages)?  I have used that to help track people down as well.
+10 votes
I've already asked about some other lines but this time I'm going to mention my Nagel line.  Maria Nagel:  Nagel-624 was the first wife of Augustus Knoderer who came from Strasburg, France and I have several more generations of ancestors for.  Maria and Augustus lived in York, York, Pennsylvania, USA.and had 9 children.  After she died Augustus married Leah Schwartz and moved to Columbus, Ohio.having one child before moving and two afterward.  I don't have any hints on who her parents are but would like to find them.
answered by Dave Dardinger G2G6 Pilot (362k points)
edited by Dave Dardinger

Strasburg church records are online at http://archives.bas-rhin.fr/scripts/accueilanglais.asp

+10 votes

So the one that most intrigues me is on my ex-wife's family tree.

Elkanah Russell. (Russell-11814).

With the last name of Russell in the family, it was always assumed that it was an English last name. The death record for Elkanah stated that his father was from Germany. The last name was originally Russel.

Elkanah was born in 1835 in Virginia (currently West Virginia) and died in 1905 in Washington, D.C., and is buried in Prospect Hill Cemetery in Washington, which was originally for German families in the area. It has an interesting history.

I can't find any information on his wife, not even a name. I would also like to be able to get information on his father. I found some information on his mother and, I believe, siblings.

Prospect Hill Cemetery offers a book, for a fee, on the names of the adults that are buried there. I will probably end up getting this book. Their website has a list of last names of people buried there, and Russell is included.

But I seem to have a difficult time getting any further information. I don't know if it's because this was in Washington, D.C. I've started to wonder if that is the case.

Any help is appreciated.

 

answered by Eric Weddington G2G6 Pilot (146k points)
+10 votes

My fifth great grandfather, Petter Holm was a gardener at the manor in ironworking Älvsbacka in Värmland, Sweden. He was born in Västergötland in 1733. The problem is that there are 450 little parishes in Västergötland, all with their own record keeping. I don't think anybody has even tried finding him.

I haven't yet entered all my research here, but when I'm done Petter will remain one of the low points. Sort of annoying - but at least he does not leave a gap in the seven-generation Ahnen-list.

answered by Eva Ekeblad G2G6 Pilot (235k points)
+11 votes

Frank Barry Barry-1283 was born in Canada in 1824. He was married to Margarett (Unknown) Barry Unknown-259186

Frank is the Father of Frank BarryMary BarrySelina (Barry) LambertPeter Barry and Eliza Barry . 

The 1880 United States Federal Census Record Census & Voter Lists shows daughter Selina Barry (then 22) with her brother Frank Barry (then 26), and other siblings living with their parents. 

But no where is the parents of Frank Barry (mentioned in the beginning, born in 1824).  That is my roadblock right now. Link is:  http://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Barry-1283

answered by Dorothy Barry G2G Astronaut (1.2m points)
I noticed that there is a Francois Barri born in Quebec and baptized around 1822. He's the legitimate son of Francois Barri and Maria Jacombe. Trois-Rivières, Québec (Quebec), Immaculée-Conception, cathédrale l Assomption. It's in the Drouin collection. If this is the right guy, it might be why he was buried in Longueuil - it's in Quebec, after all.

In the 1900 census, his name is listed as "Francis," and his guessed birthday (the census can be real off with these) is April 1827. His birthplace, his wife's birthplace, and their parents' birthplaces, are all listed as Canada (F), meaning French Canada... AKA Quebec. He and his wife are both aliens (meaning not citizens) and came to the US in 1871, as per said census. The census says they've been married for 48 years. 1900-48 = 1852.

This contradicts the Acadia record you have on the profile, with their marriage being February 12, 1872 on said record.

You have a disconnect in your records you might need to resolve.

Hi G. Thank you for your help so far and the information you shared.

However, I don't see the Acadia record that says February 12, 1872 anywhere on my profile source listings. (The marriage source has no date on that I can see. Note I am not a paid Ancestry member but am a registered "free" member so they only show some of the information not all and I copied just what they showed.) Plus if it did say 1872 then it would not line up with the children's birth dates starting with Son Frank 1854 and daughter Mary 1856 which I have. So being married in 1852 would be correct. (I had estimated 1853 in my personal notes).

 

I have: *Acadia, Canada, Vital and Church Records (Drouin Collection), 1757-1946 Name: Francis Barry Event Year: 1838-1899 (Date Unknown)Event: Mariage (Marriage) Religion: Catholique City: Chatham Place or Church Name: Chatham Province: Acadie (Nova Scotia and New Brunswick) Spouse: Marguerite Keating.

Thanks, Dorothy

Oh, added question, did this "Francois Barri" born in Quebec marry a Marguerite Keating or someone else? Thanks for your time in this. 

First of all, pardon my assumption on French Canada only being Quebec. I visited Canada and was convinced that was the only part of Canada that was so solidly French (I've actually visited Longueuil and Montreal myself!), but a glance at the Wikipedia article revealed that parts of Nova Scotia and New Brunswick were indeed considered part of French Canada.

I still think the Acadia record is the wrong one.

The Acadia record says it in the image. "On the 12th day of February 1872, Francis Barry of the Parish of [illegible] Co. Gloucester and Margaret Keating of this parish of Chatham after publication of [illegible] [illegible] their marital(?) consent in marriage before me the undersigned and [illegible] [illegible] [illegible] [illegible], in presence of A. B. Campbell and Jane [Wall/Mall/illegible] besides many others. - Thomas John [Barnum/illegible]"

There ya have it.

I don't know if Francois Barri married or not, and I just woke up, but I figured I should do this for you before I got my breakfast.

Are you sure that your Frank Barry married a Margaret Keating and not a different Margaret?

Thank you "G" for your quick response and verification.  

As of this date I no longer believe Margaret Keating is the correct spouse of Frank Barry, thanks to your research, but I do believe from the 1880 and 1900 census that he did marry a Margarett (LNAB Unknown)!! 

I have removed that source from their profiles. 

Please enjoy your breakfast and have a great week. 

 

+10 votes

Nathan Davis. Born about 1815 in Maryland; we don't know where in Maryland for certain, but he married in Frederick County in 1843 and certainly lived there the rest of his life. He died in 1866; his short obituary suggests that he was a bit of a recluse and doesn't give any parentage.

In 1850 he's near the family of James Lynn Davis and wife Elizabeth Hamner Davis, but as far as I can tell, he's not actually related to James (or at least is no closer than third cousin). I haven't ruled out a relationship with Elizabeth Hamner, especially since Nathan has a son and grandson named James Hamner Davis, but nor have I found anything to support it.

Y-DNA testing suggests a relationship between Nathan and Edward Davis (died 1736 in Charles County, Maryland), but the exact relationship hasn't been found, and it's possible that the common ancestor is too far back for us to trace.

answered by Sharon Casteel G2G6 Mach 8 (82.5k points)
My most frustrating brick wall involves Abigail Garfield (Garfield-184) who married Cornelius Houghton in Sutton, MA August 5, 1773.  Where and when was she born and who are her parents?

Mass.VR Records show the above marriage (Cornelius is shown as "of Leicester", as well as intentions filed in Sutton July 18, 1773.

Abigail died in Groton, MA in December, 1822 at the home of her youngest son, Joel.  Her gravestone indicates that she was 72 years old, suggesting a dob of about 1750.

There were a number of Garfields in the area at that time.  Most frequently suggest as parents are

     -Eliakim Garfield - Hannah Chase, unlikely as they did not marry until 1759

     -Benjamin Bowman Garfield - Abigail Harrington, unlikely as Abigail died in 1746 and he did not remarry until 1742 (Eunice Cooley).

I am trying to chase down other potential parents.
+8 votes

I complain about this part of my family whenever these sort of questions come up, but it's gotten worse now. Yay.

So, check it. My great great grandmother, Isadora York married a William Carrier at some point, I couldn't find any information on him. And then recently I did. I was so freaking ecstatic over it. Jacob William Carrier. Finally, I knew where my Carrier line came from...

... then I couldn't find proof of his birth or death anywhere, and it turns out Jacob was in jail in Philadelphia when my great grandfather, George John Carrier, was conceived -- George was born in Tioga county, NY.

What's worse is I can't even go over to Tioga to find out anything more myself, I don't have a driver's license (one of the blessings of living in NYC is not needing one... now biting me in the butt).

Edit: What I could use most right now?... maybe some logs from Eastern State Penitentiary to see if Dora ever visited Jacob while he was in jail, any info on Jacob really, maybe someone to help me go through my DNA and help me figure out what lines I match people... currently unsure of George John Carrier's father (is it Jacob somehow? Conjugal visit result in a pregnancy? If it's not him, then who?) and Dora's father's parents.

answered by G. Bartomeo G2G6 Mach 7 (76.9k points)
edited by G. Bartomeo
+8 votes
Hezekiah Strutton has been the bane of my genealogical life for decades. I believe, but cannot prove, that my 2d great-grandfather Joseph Strutton was his grandson (son of Hezekiah's son Joel). Hezekiah first shows up in Burke County North Carolina in 1787, possibly born in Virginia. His son Joel appears on the 1810 census with an unknown wife and two unknown children. Have not been able to find out any more information about Joel or his children. I believe the son listed on the 1810 census to be Joseph Strutton.

Even if I can establish that Joseph is the grandson of Hezekiah, I hit another great big monstrous brickwall. Because I have no idea where Hezekiah came from or who his parents were.
answered by Shirley Dalton G2G6 Pilot (391k points)
+8 votes
I have many brick walls, but my most recent in lineage is Bernard "Barney" John  Ryan-5290 and  Michael Patrick Fitzmaurice-135 and their wives. Irish immigrants all. Their children married each other in 1888. I know quite about them AFTER they arrived in the US.

I also have my recently tentatively toppled brick wall. Thornley L. Mattson-397. He is my third great grandfather and the urban legend is that he left to fight the Indians, and never returned.  

I can place him in Ross, Ohio in 1850. I can also place John L. Mattson there. John's son Thomas named his son Thornley. I have a notation on my family tree that Thornley's father was David, but no records. David Mattson is in Ross, Ohio in 1850 and earlier. David was married to Lucinda (which Thornley named his daughter.). She appears as if she might be the former Lucinda G, White and her father a militia man stationed in Ross, Ohio named Thornley L. White.  There are no other sources for any other Mattsons in Ohio in the early 1800s. There are only 3 (used to be 2) known people with the first name of Thornley and all were in Ross, Ohio in about 1850. So it is an amazing number of coincidences, or I got it. So please look it over and if you have any ideas where I might find something more concrete, I'd love your ideas. Or if you want to build the wall back up again, let me know that too.
answered by Susan Fitzmaurice G2G6 Mach 3 (38.5k points)
+8 votes
Brick wall:  George A Robinson, born in Virginia about 1828.  He married Celia Ann Buffkin  in Copiah County, Mississippi in November, 1861.  .  In 1870 census he, wife Celia Ann and children  lived at Meadville, Franklin County, Mississippi.  A child born in 1876.  In 1880 census, Celia Ann Robinson was a widow, living in Copiah County, Mississippi with the children.  When did George A die and where?  Family thought his middle name might be  Alexander. Who were his parents?
answered by Doris Swehla G2G Crew (440 points)
+8 votes

I have 2 pressing brick-walls, but the one I would like to knock down first is http://www.wikitree.com/wiki/McMahon-1293  John McMahon who was a blacksmith in Australia  and arrived here in 1841. Other than being mentioned in his daughter's wedding notice, I cannot ascertain anything about him. I think he must of rode off into the sunset on one of his shod horses!

answered by Rionne Brooks G2G6 Mach 3 (33.9k points)
+9 votes

Why must everyone be named Deliverance?? When did people start using the suffixes "Junior", "III", etc in consensus?

I would love to confirm that the parents of [[Wheeler-11187 | Deliverance Byron WHEELER]] are, in fact, [[Wheeler-3335 | Samuel WHEELER]] and Susan PARSONS.. married in Whitingham, Vermont on 1 FEB 1846 by Hosea BALLOU.

Also, trying to match Samuel WHEELER to any of the Captain Wheelers of the 1600s and 1700s.

I don't want to link the two Wheelers as father and son until I have some definitive proof. All I have ever come across is a marriage license between Samuel and Susan Parsons, then D. Byron Wheeler is born to Samuel and Susan Parsons Wheeler three years later.

Here is the current relationship finder for Samuel and D. Byron Wheeler: [[http://www.wikitree.com/index.php?title=Special:Relationship&action=calculate&person1_name=Wheeler-3335&person2_name=Wheeler-11187]]

answered by Anonymous Wheeler G2G Crew (470 points)
edited by Anonymous Wheeler
+7 votes

I have a brick wall with my Great Grandfather Albert L Clark.  He was married to my Great Grandmother Helen S. Clark (Schmuland-2) http://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Schmuland-2.

I have him in Census data going back to 1930 (Portland Oregon - 2 daughters), I also have his draft registration for WWII.  He states he was born in Oak Hill, Davidson Co, TN on 10/6/1889, and that he was a WWI vet as well.  He died 6/6/1952 in Portland. I had mistakenly thought he was an Albert Lowery Clark born 8/17/1889 in Hickman Co TN (http://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Clark-24011)  - but have since dis-proven the link. He might be listed as a boarder in Nashville on the 1900 Census - but I have no evidence yet on that either.

So my question...I can't find him anywhere on the 1920 census - and was wondering how you would check that census against people who might have still been in the military at that time (if he did not get released early from WWI)?

answered by Leigh Geschwill G2G2 (2.8k points)
Hi Leigh,

Would you be willing to add a profile for your Great Grandfather Albert L. Clark with what data you know for sure? It makes it easier to help collaborate rather than recreating stuff you already have.
Yes - I had just unlinked another profile I was working on for another Albert L Clark in TN (see above) and just haven't had enough solid information to create a new one yet for the correct person.  I got another piece today - so i should be able to put something up this weekend.
+7 votes
My brick wall is William Y. Young I first discovered my great great great grandfather, William Y Young, (Young-18688) in 1992. It's approaching 25 years later and I have yet to find his parents. His wife, Catherine Ann Lair's (Lair-168) family history is well known. I have his military records and property records from Illinois, but have been unable to find much about his early life in a part of Virginia that became Harrison County, Kentucky after his birth. He lived near Georgetown, KY after his military service in the War of 1812. He moved to Greene County, IL before 1834 and lived his remaining decades in Illinois.
answered by Don Castella G2G3 (3.3k points)
+8 votes

My great grandfather, Dock Holland Harris, is where that branch ends for me. He was shot and killed by his daughter's (my granny, Carrie Bell Harris Moseley) husband, George Swain, and his brother Nick when they came to collect my granny from her father's house. George and Carrie were separated and all family rumors point to George being 'mean', so possibly abusive? At any rate, I've found D.H. Harris' obituary, even the 1919 Georgia Supreme Court proceedings against George Swain, but no parents or any other basic information for Dock.

answered by Debi Matlack G2G6 Mach 5 (51.9k points)
+8 votes
I am having the hardest time locating my Grandpa Smith's side of the family. No one seems to know the Great Grandparents names or where they are from. I can trace just about everyone else back to 1500's or further, but his side is incredibly hard.

Grandpa Frank J Smith was born August 17, 1924 in Brooklyn, NY to Marie Agnes Houlihan/Holahan (1899 NY? died Nov 1971?) and Frank Joseph Smith Sr. (6/4/1894? NY? died 6/1970 NYC, NY?) They lived in NJ, NY (Brookly, Newburgh, NYC, Bronx).
My grandpa had 5 sisters:. Marie (Smith) Smith, Rita (smith) Edic, Ruth T (Smith) Laxton, Helen A (Smith) Embler, Francis Genevive (Smith) Smith. *Yes 2 sisters married Smith men HA*
Now my Grandpa has 2 Sister's that are still living ages 90-92 I believe, but no one says they remember their Grandparents names or anything about them? Why would that be?
*I was told my grandfather's dad was a 6'5 Dutch man, then someone said Italian? His mother was Irish, and my grandpa told me before he died that she and her sisters came over from Ireland, stayed in an orphanage in NY? (My DNA came back extremely Irish, Scottish with a little Italian and some other areas).
Can anyone please help me? I am trying to find my Grandpa's sisters children, so maybe they have pictures or some information.

Thank you so very much~Shanan
answered by Shan Dawson G2G4 (4k points)
Hi Shanan, I feel for you and applaud that you got as far as you have with the last name Smith.  I have been trying to get information for my daughter on her father's side but all I have is his parents names, A. Jones and L. Smith.  Smith and Jones! Even if I knew where he was, I couldn't ask him. There are so many Smith's and Jones' it makes my head spin every time I try.  They are not in your line as they are African American from one of the Carolina's I believe or somewhere down South but my ex was born in Maryland.

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