Showing posts with label Fitch. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Fitch. Show all posts

Monday, April 13, 2009

Don't take NO for an answer

Several years ago my husband and I (along with my parents) made a genealogy trip to Trinity county, California. We wanted to visit the area where Horace Fitch lived and ran Fitch's Ferry. We stopped at the Trinity County Historical Society in Weaverville...hoping they would have information on Horace and his family. Much to our disappointment the docent said they didn't have anything.

Before leaving, we all strolled through the various displays. I notice in the back of one room there were some card files. They appeared to be a card catalog of the Society's holdings in alphabetical order by surname. Even though we had been told that there was nothing on the Fitch family, I decided to check the card catalog. Imagine my surprise when I saw a card for Horace Fitch and also one for Oscar Fitch (Horace's brother)!

The card for Horace referenced a photo in the Society's collection of Horace and Oscar taken in about 1907.

The back of the photo identifies Oscar in the front riding "Ted" and Horace in the back riding "Jim." On the porch is Oscar's wife, Louisa (Plank) Fitch, and his granddaughter, Dorothy, is on the right edge of the photo. We were allowed to photograph the front and back of the photo.

The catalog card for Oscar referenced a diary or memoir he wrote of his Civil War experience. We weren't allowed to photocopy or photograph it (darn!). So we transcribed what we could.

The moral of the story...don't take NO for an answer. Ask if the agency has a card catalog of their holdings. You never know what you might find!

Thursday, April 09, 2009

On the street where they lived...

Abraham Albee's & Fannie (Fitch) Albee's home on Dorland St. burned down during the 1906 San Francisco earthquake. Fannie's father, Horace Fitch, bought them a lot at 222 Prague St. Abraham purchased two earthquake shacks and had them moved to the lot; where he joined them together. In this picture (L-R) Bertha, Fannie, Winnie, Walter and Abraham Albee holding Jeff are standing next to their Prague St. earthquake shack.

The photo is circa 1906/1907

I checked the McInerney actions (court actions to establish land ownership). I didn't find anything, but then I realized...I wouldn't. The McInerney actions were for people to claim their land after records were destroyed in the earthquake and subsequent fire. Had the Albees put their earthquake shacks on Dorland where they had lived at the time (if they owned the land), there would probably have been an action. But they put the shacks on Prague street. This would have been a new purchase - hence, no McInerney action required. I need to check regular land records to confirm the family story that Fannie's father purchased the land for them.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Texas? Why Texas????

My great-great grandfather, Horace Y. Fitch, was born in New York and died in Stillwater, Payne county, Oklahoma. Based on census records, he lived in New York, California, Kansas and Oklahoma. My mother found something surprising the other day...an obituary for Horace in a Dallas, Texas newspaper. Why Texas? To our knowledge he never lived in Texas, and none of his children lived in Texas. I searched Ancestry's Dallas City Directories (1889 to 1894)...no Fitch. The obituary is printed beneath the title "Special to the news." It remains a mystery. Why would his death be newsworthy in Dallas? Any ideas?

Friday, February 06, 2009

"the kindest of women..."

Ella (Fitch) Myers was the mother of 3 small children when she passed away. While making their breakfast her dress caught fire, and she was badly burned. She never recovered. Her obituary testifies to the sweet, loving person she was and how much she would be missed. I love the quote from her obituary..."sympathy is no balm to their wounded hearts."

Will the real Cornelia please stand up...

We have received pictures from 2 different sources. Each sender contends the picture they sent was of Cornelia Reynolds (who married Horace Fitch). I don't think they look like the same person or even appear to be from the same era. I'm no expert, but the hair style and manner of dress in the second photo appear to be from an earlier time period. Also, I don't think women changed their hair style so drastically back then. What do you think?

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

A woman of substance...

Quite by accident (a random google search) I found that the Arizona Historical Society in Tempe had 2 boxes of items belonging to Reamy Fitch and his wife, Helen Klingler. Although Reamy is not my direct line, I was intrigued and we arranged to make a stop on one of our trips.

Among the items were copies of Christmas letters Helen sent out every year. Helen was quite an accomplished woman. Every Christmas letter included a poem she wrote. Here is one of her poems:

She was also a painter

I feel so blessed to have "happened" on these little pieces of Helen and Reamy's life. I would have enjoyed knowing them. I believe we were guided to finding this information. When I later checked to see if their work had been done, I found all had been done except their sealing to each other. Reading their letters, I could feel their love for each other, and know they would want to be sealed together for eternity.