52 Ancestors Week 10: Bachelor Uncle

+16 votes
1.3k views

imageReady for Week 10 of the 52 Ancestors challenge?

You're encouraged to share a profile of an ancestor or relative who matches the week's theme. This week's sharing prompt:

BACHELOR UNCLE

From Amy Johnson Crow:

Coming soon!

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in The Tree House by Eowyn Walker G2G Astronaut (1.7m points)
reshown by Eowyn Walker
Easy-peasy. I'm the bachelor uncle in my family. Never could find a woman crazy enough to marry me. :)
Our father's older brother Peter Sannino born 1921 was a bachelor uncle. Upon graduating high school, he had apprenticed as a pipefitter. The day after Pearl Harbor, the town organized a parade that marched the length of Main St. ending at Borough Hall. Like most of the town's young men, Peter fell in with the parade, marched to Borough Hall and enlisted. He chose the navy, and served throughout the war in the Atlantic as a seaman in his ship's engine rooms. Peter was also the Chaplain's (Catholic) Assistant as well as ship's middlewight boxing champ (but not fleet champ  he admitted). His war experience included accompanying convoys, then troop transport. While in England, he developed a lifelong love of all things Irish, rare for an Italian-American of that time. He was in D-Day, shipboard. After the war, Pete came home opened a plumbing business, then a bar restaurant, sponsored sports teams in the local and semi-pro leagues, was a lifelong member of the YMCA, and the PBA, and the VFW, American Legion, and ushered at 10 o'clock mass every Sunday until the week before he died after a brief illness at aged 83. My Irish born wife was astonished at the number of people who appeared at his viewing and attended his funeral.
Maybe you're just smarter than the average crazy bachelor uncle? :)

Rob, I'm right there with you man! smiley

69 Answers

+17 votes

This week's topic is a little tricky because I don't have any bachelor uncles, neither did my parents. I decided to pick my great grand uncle Herbert Hawkes who apprenticed as a Tailor but served during WW I in the Royal Navy and later in the RAF when it was formed on 1st April 1918. His brother Albert Hawkes also served in the Royal Navy and later in the RAF. I am sure both of them shared tales of derring-do that impressed their nephews because several of them joined the armed services in the 1920s.
 

by Ray Hawkes G2G6 Mach 5 (50.3k points)
Great uncle is an uncle ;-)
+22 votes

Great Uncle Arthur joined the Navy to see the world.  From 1924 to 1928 he enjoyed his bachelor days visiting ports and seeing the world.

Unfortunately, his life in the Navy killed him.  He contracted tuberculosis while on board his ship and was hospitalized until 1931 when he died.

I adopted his Find a Grave memorial this week and posted a photo request two days ago.  I was surprised to see that it was fulfilled today!

by SJ Baty G2G Astronaut (1.1m points)
edited by SJ Baty
+18 votes

This is a tough one Eowyn!  Off the top of my head, I can tell you about some interesting spinster aunts but the death rate was high among the men, and those who survived to adulthood tended to marry.  

I do have one: a favourite uncle of my father: Wilson Trefry. He drove an ambulance in France and Belgium for nearly three years in WWI - he missed Vimy but he was in the Somme and many other battles. After the war, he took over the family farm and cared for his parents. Nothing dramatic, but he was respected in the community, and a road is named after him in Argyle, Yarmouth, Nova Scotia.

by Laurie Giffin G2G6 Mach 8 (83.1k points)
+14 votes

I found one.  Peter Ringo was my 6x great uncle and he never married.  

by Caryl Ruckert G2G6 Pilot (190k points)
+16 votes

I have a Bachelor Uncle...sort of. He is the first person to come to mind. His name is Edgar Bender and he was a bachelor for most of his life. Edgar is my 4th great uncle. My second cousin has done the family history since before I was born and I started working on it with her about 10 years ago. She said that Edgar never married and I didn't really do any digging on him until a few years ago. Lo and behold, Edgar did marry....very late in his life. He was 61 years old when he married and his wife died sometime shortly thereafter. I found her on the 1920 census listed as his wife and by 1930, Edgar was listed as a widower. He went on to live until he was 78 years old. Needless to say, his short marriage was a surprise and we still kind of consider him a bachelor!

by Anonymous Tuma G2G6 Mach 1 (14.3k points)
+15 votes

Since I did not have any bachelor uncles, I went to my husband's family. He had two bachelor uncles -- Fr. Patrick Shaules and Fr. Rockwell Shaules. They both became priests. Father Pat, as he was called by the family, spent most of his time doing missionary work in the Philippines, while Father Rock spent his time more locally in the US. I believe he was more of a counselor. I never had the opportunity of meeting either of these remarkable men, but they were both well-loved by their family.

by Robin Shaules G2G6 Pilot (895k points)
+12 votes

This bachelor uncle isn't related to me at all (I don't think), but having researched him want to share his story.

Walter Gerald Hughes was born on 18 July 1886 the youngest of William and Mary Jane's nine children. In the 1891 census, Walter is a scholar living with his family in the village of Botolph Claydon, however by 1901, the 14-year-old had left rural Buckinghamshire and was working as a Page (servant) at the Church Missionary Society Preparatory Institute on the north side of Clapham Common, London. Ten years later and is working as a railway porter and living with his parents again. Walter worked for the Metropolitan Railway Company from 1904 and worked his way up the ranks to become a signalman at Quainton Road Station – this is now the Buckinghamshire Railway Museum where I volunteer.

On 3 October 1914, Walter left railway service & enlisted for war: he joined the army & served as Bombardier and later Corporal 39251in B Battery, 84th Brigade of the Royal Field Artillery in France & Flanders where he was killed in action on 19 August 1917, aged 31; unmarried with no children. This most likely puts him in the Battle of Langemarck; one of a series more commonly known now as the Battle of Passchendaele. Walter is buried at Artillery Wood Cemetery, Boezinge, Belgium and also remembered on his parent’s grave in Buckinghamshire and honoured at Baker Street Station, London on the Metropolitan Railway Company memorial.

by Alison Wilkins G2G6 Mach 2 (29.8k points)
+15 votes

As my mother's only brother was married with children and my father was an only child, I have to jump a generation to my maternal Grandfather's brother.

Grand-Uncle Henry was the only one of the family at the time who was "free" of family obligations to take a trip to Sweden in answer to a newspaper advertisement seeking descendants of the family there.  Henry returned bearing treasure: four copies of the family's genealogical records going back to the late 1400s / early 1500s.  Four copies for five children.  Poor Grand-Aunt Annie was not included in the bounty.  (MY guess is it's because she was born after her father died, so he never registered her with the Swedish family and she was, therefore, unknown to them.)  The surviving three sons each received their copy, but my maternal Grandfather's copy was "held in trust" for his children .. because you can't cut it in half, and because nobody knew which of the children would be interested enough to want it.  Unfortunately, by the time my mother was at a stage in life to want it, it had spent so long in the backyard shed at her Uncle Stanley's place in Tropical North Queensland that it had pretty much just rotted away (as had a portrait of her paternal grandmother that was also "held in trust" for her).

One day .. one day I will track down the cousins up north and see if any of them have their family's copy.  Or the cousins in Brisbane who might have their father's copy.  What happened to Grand-Uncle Henry's copy may never be known (unless he gave or Willed it to a niece or nephew).

.

.

(I'm a wee bit too pleased with myself for managing to participate every week of these 10 weeks so far.  Will I make it to 52?  Will I even make it to 26?  Only the wikifairies know.)

by Melanie Paul G2G6 Pilot (269k points)
+16 votes
I'm gonna take my uncle, the brother of my mother, who went during the German occupation of the Balcan into the partisans and was killed of nationalist Serbs. My grandmother looked for him for months, always asked the farmers she met if somebody had heard or seen something of him and ultimately found a gypsy who said he knew where he was because he had to ditch the grave of him and his three friends who were with him. My grandma then ditched herself and identified him because of the coat he wore. The four were then transferred to a cemetery that has a WW II section and there they are still today. I'm gonna link the pic of his gravestone, but I'm not sure it's gonna show up as mum is still living. https://www.wikitree.com/photo/jpg/Glumac-4
by Jelena Eckstädt G2G6 Pilot (620k points)
+14 votes

I used my bachelor great-granduncle, William O. Perry, last year as the subject of week 4 - Invite to dinner.  So I'm going a bit further out on the family tree to his first cousin Oscar Durin Chapin who was just about his age and also remained single and was uncle to a number of his seven siblings' children.

Oscar was a farmer and at least on the census records remained in the same county most of his life.  He was the only one of his brothers who didn't marry.  However, they didn't fare too well with their wives as I found deaths and divorces left many of them single.

by Jill Perry G2G6 Mach 4 (41.1k points)
+16 votes

This is my Great Uncle Frank Long on the left. He was known to be a real man with the ladies. He kept several cheap engagement rings, so they would always be handy. His dad is in the middle, and my grandfather, his brother-in-law, is on the right. Frank spent most of his evenings in the bars. He always wanted my grandfather with him, as he would get drunk and pick a fight, so he needed a man the size of my grandfather with him. In his later years, he spent his holidays at my house. The alcohol did affect his speech by that time, but I made sure he was always welcome.                 https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Long-12275#             

by Alexis Nelson G2G6 Pilot (325k points)
edited by Alexis Nelson
+17 votes

My 'Bachelor Uncle' story is somewhat tragic. 

Hugh David Gray

My uncle Hugh David Gray served in World War II along with two of his other brothers. They all returned home from the war, thankfully. 

After discharge from the US Army Air Force, Hugh took advantage of his GI Bill and moved from Texas to Tuscon, Arizona for six months of training in aeronautics just after the conclusion of the war. 

On Saturday, March 27, 1948 while his mother was visiting him, he was reported missing after his training plane did not return. The wreckage of his plane was found the following day with his watch stopped about 45 minutes after his takeoff time.

She brought her son's body back to Abilene, Texas and he was laid to rest at Cedar Hill Cemetery. 

My father never flew on a plane because of this tragedy. 

by Patricia Ferdig G2G6 Mach 3 (31.4k points)
Very sad story.
+12 votes
Wow, I had to go back a ways for this one-not too many bachelor uncles in my family.  One of my grandma's uncles was Edward Wellington Crossley Jr.  He was a lifelong employee of the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad Company (and probably a Monopoly fan as well) and lived in Newark, Ohio.  My grandma always said he was a very nice person and remembered him fondly.  He passed away a few  years before my mother was born.
by K. Anonymous G2G6 Pilot (125k points)
+16 votes

My 4th great-grandmother's brother from Gloucestershire, England was a naturalist named Simeon Warner Millard and an eccentric bachelor uncle to be sure!  According to the Tewkesbury Yearly Register from 1840, he was a "man of caterpillars, fleas, and earwigs".  A Quaker, he was to be wed but "frightened at what he considered 'perpetual bondage', he deserted the lady, and eventually gave her six hundred pounds to prevent an action for breach of promise of marriage."  His cabinet of insects was sold after his death and was considered equal to that of any private individual in England.

by Geoffrey Crofton G2G6 (6.8k points)
+13 votes
I have to go back a generation -- my father's only brother was married, and my mother has only sisters.

Houston Chisholm, the eldest of a massive clan of siblings and half-siblings, was born in 1900. His father named several of his sons for towns in Mississippi: Houston, Raymond, Clinton, Braxton, and Newton all for the towns (respectively) of Houston, Raymond, Clinton, Braxton, and Newton MS. Perhaps he ran out of town names he liked, as the other boys had more regular names.

Houston died in 1927. I do not know the cause.

https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Chisholm-1038
by Jessica Key G2G6 Pilot (180k points)
+13 votes

None of my immediate uncles are bachelors; however, I am the "second great grand niece" of William Kilgour who, as far as I and another family researcher are aware, never married or had children.

by Amelia Utting G2G6 Pilot (181k points)
+11 votes
I think you've pretty much stumped me on this one. No bachelor's that I can find in any of my family lines. If someone didn't marry, it was mostly because they died in a war or from an accident or disease before they got a chance to. But my husband has a nephew who hasn't married and he's got nieces and nephews of his own, so he will have to do. No name, since he is still living. He's been very successful in his career, he's very loved by his family, he's really good to his widowed mother, and he's happy as a clam being a bachelor.
by Nelda Spires G2G6 Pilot (287k points)
+12 votes

This week I'm picking my Great-great-grand uncle Hercules Hall.

He was born in 1829 in Ireland, in pretty much the same place my father's family have lived ever since, and only a few miles from where I was born.  Sadly there are no Halls of our line left there anymore, but there are a few Hall descendants from the female lines.

Hercules was one of four brothers including my G2 Grandfather that we knew about when starting out researching my family, and the reason we knew about them was mainly through land registers, with Ireland sources at this time being scarce.  After many years of digging the information for him is still quite sparse, but with a bit of research and luck we have managed to find five extra brothers and sisters. All the others married and had many children - 59 nephews and nieces for him - so Hercules was quite unique.  Even though he didn't marry he did stay closely involved with the family, and it seems once he was too old to farm himself, he rented his farm to one of his nephews and continued living with that family until his death at age 86 in 1915.
 

by Linda Hawkes G2G6 Mach 3 (37.5k points)
+11 votes
My father's brother. Warren G. Adkins (Adkins-1729) never married. He was born in the mountains of eastern Kentucky in 1923. One of fifteen children, he had plenty of niece's and nephews he treated like his own children. He was everybody's favorite uncle, and a favorite to many great grand niece's and nephews.  There isn't a single cousin in my family who doesn't have a favorite memory to share of him. He loved family, nature, and animals.  He will always be remembered for teaching his niece's and nephews compassion and kindness with his patient, gentle soul.
by Mary Imler G2G Crew (530 points)
+12 votes

Unfortunately I only have 2 Uncles, who are both married. I have a fair few Great Uncles but they are again all married except Georgie Pallant who died when he was only 3 years old. Probably not exactly what we are looking for here, but certainly a bachelor. So he is my nomination.

by Chris Colwell G2G6 Mach 2 (22.3k points)

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