That’s Odd!!

This blog is about the son of Francis Evison and Lydia Cooper.  His name is Francis C. Evison and he was born on 24 Jun 1860 in Lucas County, Ohio (USA).  Francis C is my 1st cousin, 3X removed.

Shortly after his birth, Francis’s parents must have moved to Whiteford, Monroe County, Michigan (USA) because the family was recorded as living there on 27 July 1860.

Sadly, Francis’s mother died sometime between 11 Nov 1862 (the day that Francis’s younger sister was born) and 28 May 1870 (the day that Francis’s father married his second wife).  Francis was 11 years old when his father remarried.

It was also within this time period that Francis moved from Michigan back to Ohio!

Census Taker - Norman Rockwell

Census Taker – Norman Rockwell

Oddly, in July of 1870, Francis was enumerated as living in two different places in Sylvania, Lucas County (Ohio)!

On 18 Jul 1870.  Francis was staying with his paternal grandparents, William and Lucy Evison.  Then on 19 Jul 1870, he was living with his father and stepmother!?

The instructions to the census taker were to record, “the name of every person whose place of abode on the first day of June, 1870, was in this family.”   Clearly, Francis could not be living in both places on 1 Jun 1870!  I think that he was living with his grandparents on 1 Jun 1870 and with his father and stepmother on 19 Jul 1870.

By the end of 1879, Francis was back living in Michigan!

Francis C Evison and Alvaretta Metcalf

Marriage - Francis Evison and Alvaretta MetcalfOn 21 Dec 1879 in Seneca, Lenawee County (Michigan),  20-year-old Francis married 17-year-old Alvaretta Hannah Metcalf.

Alvaretta, the daughter of William T. Metcalf and Mary Newell, was born on 22 Jul 1862 in Sand Creek, Lenawee County (Michigan).

scratch-head03-idea-animated-animation-smiley-emoticon-000416-largeIn 1880, Francis is again listed as living in two different places!  This time in Seneca, Lenawee County (Michigan).  He was written in — and then crossed off — living with his parents and younger sister. And he was also enumerated living with his wife, Alvaretta, and her widowed mother, Mary Metcalf.  Odd!!

1880 Census - Francis and Ann Evison and Family  1880 Census - Francis and Alvaretta Evison

On 3 Feb 1883 in Seneca, Francis and Alvaretta’s son was born.  He was registered as William E. Evison, but he was also known as “Earl”.

Birth - William Earl Evison

At the end of June of 1884, the Evisons were still living with Alvaretta’s mother, Mary Metcalf, in Seneca.

1884 Michigan Census - Francis, Alvaretta and William EvisonAlvaretta Metcalf Evison BarberNow another odd thing in the life of Francis C. Evison!!

According to an on-line family tree, Alvaretta married Charles Frederick Barber in 1894!?  Alvaretta and Charles’s first child was born the following year — on 2 Nov 1895 in Adrian, Lenawee County (Michigan).

The owner of the on-line tree also posted a photograph of Alvaretta and she obviously lived into old age LOL!

I contacted the Ancestry member who posted the photograph to ask if she knows anything about the circumstances of Alvaretta’s re-marriage — but, as of the date of this blog, I have not received an answer.

Update on 25 Aug 2014

I heard back from the Ancestry member and she doesn’t have any information on the circumstances surrounding Alvaretta’s re-marriage.  So I have to assume that Alvaretta and Francis Evison divorced sometime between 1884 (the last census where they are living together) and 1894 (when Alvaretta married Charles Barber).

Alvaretta had two children with Charles Barber:  Bertha Ann (b: 2 Nov 1895) and Charles Noble (b: 18 Sep 1900) and she died on 22 Mar 1946.

Now back to the life story of Francis Evison!

By the end of 1897, Francis was about to move again – from Michigan back to Ohio!

Francis C Evison and Cintha (Cynthia) Stevens

Marriage - Francis Evison and Cynthia StevensOn 4 Dec 1897, Francis applied for a marriage license to marry Cynthia Stevens.

He swore an oath that he “has no wife living”.  So either he lied, or he was divorced from Alvaretta 😉

Francis and Cynthia married the next day — on 5 Dec 1897 in Lucas County (Ohio).  I couldn’t find any information about who Cynthia’s parents are.  But she was born in 1867 in Liberty, Adams County (Ohio).  Cynthia was about 7 years younger than Francis.

In 1900, Francis and Cynthia were still living in Lucas County.  Francis was employed as a carpenter and the family was living in a house that they owned (but was mortgaged).

thinking-idea-animated-animation-smiley-emoticon-000339-facebookThe census taker wrote Francis’s son’s name as “Earl W” — not “William E” as it has been on all documents up until 1900.  Odd!

And it appears that Earl continued to live with his father, not his mother when she re-married.

1900 Census - Francis, Cynthia and Earl Evison

Cynthia Stevens Evison died on 19 Nov 1900 in Adams Township, Lucas County (Ohio).  The odd thing is that her name is shown as “Cintha” in the transcription that I found on the Mormon website (  Cintha (aka Cynthia) was only 33 years old when she died (cause of death unknown).

Death - Cintha A Evison

Francis C Evison and Laura Melissa Stevens

Marriage - Francis Evison and Laura StevensFrancis married for the third time, to Laura Melissa Stevens, on 13 Jan 1901 in Toledo, Lucas County (Ohio).  This was the first marriage for Laura.

Laura was born in Fulton County (Ohio) on 27 Jun 1874  — almost 15 years younger than Francis!!  She is the daughter of Myron Stevens and Kezia Adeline Eastman.

I searched for, but couldn’t find, any proof that Cynthia (Cintha) Stevens and Laura Melissa Stevens were related.

The year after she married Francis, Laura gave birth to a son named Cecil Edward Evison.  He was born on 26 Nov 1902 in Toledo.

Birth - Cecil Edward Evison

1910 Census - Francis and Laura Evison and FamilyTheir second son, Harry E, was born in about 1908.  The odd thing is that he was born in Michigan!!

I couldn’t find any documentation to determine when the Evison family moved from Ohio to Michigan but, by Apr of 1910, they were back in Ohio — living in Chesterfield Township, Fulton County (Ohio).

1920 Census  - Francis and Laura Evison and FamilyThen, in 1920 and 1930, Francis was living in Adams Township, Lucas County (Ohio), with his wife, Laura, and their sons, Cecil and Harry.

In 1920, Francis’s widowed father was also living with them and Francis’s eldest son, Earl, was living a few doors down.

The odd thing in the 1930 census (dated 9 Apr 1930) is that Francis’s occupation is written in as “landscaper-real estate firm” — but then is crossed off and “none” is written over top.

1930 Census - Francis and Laura Evison and Family

The Death of Francis C Evison and Laura Stevens Evison

Francis C Evison died a month after the 1930 census was taken.  He died of pulmonary tuberculosis on 10 May 1930 at the age of 69 years, 10 months and 15 days.  His death certificate says that he is buried in one of the cemeteries in Lyons, Fulton County (Ohio).  However, I couldn’t find his name listed in the index here.

His death certificate also says that he last worked in 1926 and that he worked for 35 years as a carpenter — which means he was about 30 years old when he became a carpenter.  Before that, he was a farmer.

Death - Francis C Evison

Laura continued to live in the same house that she was living in when Francis died — 1114 Wamba Ave in Adams Township, Lucas County (Ohio).  She was living there with her son, Harry, in 1940.

1940 Census - Laura and Harry Evison

On 9 Feb 1945 in Adams Township, Lucas County (Ohio), Laura Stevens Evison died of coronary sclerosis and angina pectoris.  She was buried in Rose Hill Cemetery in Lyons, Fulton County (Ohio) on 12 Feb 1945.  I’m assuming that she was buried with Francis but I was unable to find a transcription or a photo of their headstone.

Death - Laura Stevens Evison

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Francis Evison, the Inventor (Part Two)

Part One of this blog was about Francis Evison’s birth, his life in England, his emigration to the United States, his first marriage and the birth of his first two children.  Part Two is about his life after the death of his first wife, Lydia Cooper Evison.

Lydia Cooper Evison died, probably in either Michigan or Ohio, sometime before 28 May 1870.  It was on 28 May 1870 that Francis married his second wife, Ann Williams — in Lucas County, Ohio (USA).

Marriage - Francis Evison and Ann Williams

Marriage – Francis Evison and Ann Williams

Ann was born on 20 Apr 1846 in Pennsylvania, the daughter of John and Ann Williams.  Ann became step-mother to Francis’s two children, Francis (age 11) and Lydia (age 7).

1870 Census - Francis and Ann Evison and FamilyIn July of 1870, the Evisons were living in Sylvania (pronounced Sih-vain-yah), Lucas County, Ohio.  Francis was employed as a cooper, making and repairing casks and barrels.

By 1874, Francis and his family had moved to Seneca Township, Lenawee County, Michigan — which is about 30 miles northwest of Sylvania.

The maps below are maps of Seneca Township.  The one on the left is from 1874 showing the location of Francis Evison’s farm.  The one on the right is a screecapture from Google maps showing the approximate location of Francis’s farm today.

1874 Map - Location of Francis Evison's farm2013 Map - Approx. location of Francis Evison's FarmNote that, in 1874, the Evisons were living next door and closeby to several Metcalf families.  Francis’s son, Francis, will marry Alvaretta Metcalf in 1879.  More about Francis and Alvaretta and their descendants in a future blog.

According to the 1900 Census, Francis and Ann had one child who died before the 1900 Census was taken.  But, on the findagrave website, I found two entries for Evison children who died in Lenawee County (Michigan).  One is for Frank Evison who was born on 7 Sep 1877 and died two days later, on 9 Sep 1877.  The other is for Frank William Evison who died on 1 Feb 1879 (DOB unknown).   Both are buried in the same plot in Oak Grove Cemetery in Morenci, Lenawee County (Michigan).   Is this the same child or two different children of Francis and Ann Williams Evison??

Findagrave - Frank William Evison    Findagrave - Frank Evison

In 1880, Francis is still living in Seneca Township with his wife, Ann, and his 17-year-old daughter, Lydia.  Francis’s son’s name is written in on the census form — but then crossed off.   I’m not sure why Francis Jr.’s name is written in and crossed off.  By 1880, he was married and living with his wife and mother-in-law (see subsequent blog about Francis Jr.)

By the 1884 Michigan census, Lydia had married and moved away from her parent’s home.  Francis and Ann continued to reside in Seneca Township.

1880 Census - Francis and Ann Evison and Family1884 Michigan Census - Francis and Annie Evison

Now we come to the reason that I titled the blog, Francis Evison, the Inventor 🙂

On 10 Aug 1886, Francis “invented a new and useful improvement” in clod crushers and pulverisers.  A “clod” is defined as a lump of earth or soil — so I assume that a clod crusher was something that crushed clods LOL!!

Clod Crusher and Pulveriser Invention - Francis Evison

And then, on 19 Oct 1897, Francis patented a “new and useful” windmill:

Purpose of Windmill

Windmill Invention - Francis Evison

Sadly, the 1890 US Census was destroyed by fire/damaged by smoke and water in a fire in the basement of the Commerce Building in Washington, D.C. in 1921 — so I don’t know where Francis and Ann were living in 1890.

But I would assume that they were still in Seneca Township because, in 1900, 64-year-old Francis and 55-year-old Ann were living there.  Interestingly though, Francis is now earning his living as a blacksmith!!

1900 Census - Francis and Ann Evison

Then in 1910, Francis is back to being a farmer in Seneca Township.

1910 Census - Francis and Ann Evison

On 24 Feb 1919, at 72 years of age, Ann died of pernicious anemia and chronic bronchitis.  She was buried in Oak Grove Cemetery in Morenci, Lenawee County (Michigan) on 27 Feb 1919.

Death - Ann Williams Evison

1920 Census - The EvisonsAfter Ann died, the widower Francis likely moved back to Ohio.

He is listed in the 1920 Census living with his son, Francis Jr., and his family in Adams Township, Lucas County (Ohio).

The findagrave entry for Francis says that he died on 12 Jul 1924 in Seneca Township, Lenawee County (Michigan) and that he is buried in Oak Grove Cemetery in Morenci, Lenawee County (Michigan).  But there isn’t a photograph of his headstone posted on the findagrave site — so I did some further research and found this:

Transcription of Sexton Record - Francis Evison

It’s a transcription of the Sexton Records of those buried in Oak Grove Cemetery.  A “sexton” is the person in charge of a cemetery, responsible for keeping detailed records of those buried in the cemetery.

The Sexton Record says that Francis died in Morenci, Lenawee County (Michigan) of old age.  Note that it also says that he was 89 years old when he died — which means he could have been born in 1835, not 1836.

I noticed that the entry for Francis was in Volume 2 of the Sexton Records, so I searched for Volume 1 and found this:

Transcription of Sexton Records - Ann, William St. Thomas and Frank Evison

Amazingly, it is the Sexton Records for Ann Williams Evison (Francis’s second wife), William St. Thomas Evison (Francis’s father) and Frank Evison (Francis and Ann’s son)!

untitledI decided to take a chance and send an e-mail to the person who did the transcriptions and ask if she would go to the cemetery and take a photograph of the headstones.

And she responded!!

In her e-mail, she explained that the transcriptions were taken from the original
Sexton’s Records and burial cards kept at City Hall in Morenci. Her husband was
Mayor at the time and she had access to those records and was able to transcribe

She attached a photograph that she took of the headstone for Francis and Ann Evison and explained that there isn’t a marker for William St. Thomas or Frank — but that the lot is very large, so they are likely buried in the same plot.

Headstone - Francis and Ann Williams Evison

I am thrilled, not only to have a photograph of the headstone for Francis and Ann, but also to finally discover when/why my great, great, great grandfather, William St. Thomas Evison, died — and where he is buried!

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Francis Evison, the Inventor (Part One)

As mentioned previously, the next few blogs will be about Francis Evison and his descendants.

Map - Lincolnshire, EnglandFrancis was the third-born child of William St. Thomas Evison and Lucy Frost.  He is the older brother of my great, great grandfather, William Evison.

Francis was born in Hogsthorpe, Lincolnshire, England.

I couldn’t find any documentation to determine exactly when Francis was born, but it was likely in about November of 1836.

Francis’s older siblings, John and Harriet, both died of unknown causes early in 1841.

1841 UK Census - William and Lucy EvisonIn June of 1841, 4-year-old Francis was living with his parents and younger brother, William, in Hogsthorpe.  Francis’s father earned his living as a tile maker.  By 1851, the family had moved to the nearby town of Farlesthorpe (Lincolnshire).  14-year-old Francis was working as a “brickmaker’s boy”.

1851 UK Census - William and Lucy Evison and Family

Passenger List - William and Lucy Evison and SonsWhen he was 17 years old, Francis and his family emigrated to the United States.

They sailed on a ship called The West Point from Liverpool (England) and landed in New York, New York (USA), on 19 Dec 1853.

Sometime between his immigration in 1853 and the 1860 US Census, Francis married Lydia Cooper, daughter of William and Ann Cooper.  Lydia was born in Holbeach, Lincolnshire and was baptized there on 14 Mar 1842.

Passenger List - Lydia Cooper and FamilyIn 1851, Lydia was living with her family in Holbeach.  Then in 1853, Lydia travelled with her mother and siblings from Liverpool (England) to New York City (USA).

The family sailed on a ship named The City of Washington and arrived in New York on 24 Oct 1853.

This is where things get interesting and complicated, because Lydia is listed in two different Census documents in 1860!!

In one census form, completed on 18 Jun 1860, Lydia is listed with the surname of “Cooper” and living with her family in Sylvania, Lucas County, Ohio.  In another census completed on 27 Jul 1860, she is living with her husband, Francis Evison, and newborn son, Francis, in nearby Whiteford, Monroe County, Michigan!

1860 Census - Lydia Cooper and Family  1860 Census - Francis and Lidia Evison and FamilyNow the interesting thing is that, according to her son Francis’s death certificate, Francis Jr. was born on 24 Jun 1860 in Lucas County, Ohio.

So on June 18th, 18-year-old Lydia is living with her parents in Ohio.  On June 24th in Ohio, she gives birth to a son.  A month later, on July 27th, Lydia is living with her son and husband in Michigan. Because I couldn’t find a marriage certificate for Lydia and Francis, I don’t know if they married before, or after, their son was born.

t4805The 1860 Census also provides a clue as to how Lydia Cooper may have met Francis Evison.  In 1860, the Coopers were living next door to Alden Ashley.  Alden is the brother of Nancy Ashley who is Ellen Wickham’s mother.  Ellen Wickham married William Evison, Francis Evison’s brother!

Francis and Lydia had a second child, Lydia, who was born on 11 Nov 1862 in Monroe County, Michigan.  More about the children of Francis and Lydia is a subsequent blog.

Civil War Draft Registration - Francis EvisonThe American Civil War began on April 12, 1861.  By 1863, it became necessary for the federal government to draft men to swell the ranks of the Union Army.   Men between the ages of 20 and 45 were eligible for duty.

Only men who were mentally or physically impaired, the only son of a widow, the son of infirm parents, or a widower with dependent children were exempt.

Francis Evison was 26 years old on 1 Jun 1863 and was not exempt from the draft — so he was registered in the First Congressional District of Wayne, Munroe, Lenawee and Hillsdale counties in the state of Michigan.   His occupation was listed as farmer.  I don’t know whether Francis actually served in the Union Army — but if he did, he left behind a wife with two very young children to care for.  The Civil War ended on 9 Apr 1865.

Lydia died sometime before 28 May 1870.  On that date, Francis married Ann Williams.

Part Two of this blog continues with the life of Francis Evison after he married Ann Williams.

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Descendancy Research

Descendancy Research

Descendancy Research is defined by Familysearch as:

the process of finding all the descendants (children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and so on) of one of your ancestors.

and the purpose of descendancy research is:

a great way to identify and connect with distant cousins, locate family documents and photos, share stories, and collaborate on research projects.

Familysearch recommends that you choose an ancestral couple who lived in the early to mid-1800s and then research all of their children and all of their descendants.

For the Evison family, the ancestral couple would be William St. Thomas Evison and Lucy Frost.  William St. Thomas and Lucy Frost Evison are my great, great, great grandparents.

William and Lucy had 4 children: Harriet (b: 1832), John (b: 1834), Francis (b: 1836) and William (b: 1839).  All of the children were born in Hogsthorpe, Lincolnshire, England.

Sadly, Harriet and John both died in 1841.  Harriet was 9 years old and John was 7.  And for the past few months, the focus of my blogs has been to document the descendants of William, my great, great grandfather.

So the only other surviving child of William and Lucy Evison was their son, Francis.

For the next month or so, I will be writing about Francis Evison (my great, great uncle) and his descendants.

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Pandora’s Box

I’ve recently encountered a bit of a dilemma in my journey to document the lives of my ancestors!

sad-faceWhat is causing my consternation is that, after I write and publish a blog about an ancestor, I may find more information and/or documents about that ancestor — and I don’t know how deal with this additional data.

An example is the recent release of the 1921 Canadian Census.  I located most of my Evison ancestors, who were alive in 1921.  One would think that this is a good thing — but I’m now faced with a decision about what to do to “update” the blogs that I’ve already published!?

I thought and thought and thought about it and narrowed my choices down to:

  1. Go back and add a copy of the 1921 Census to the blogs that I’ve already published.
  2. Write an “addendum” blog for each ancestor that I found in the 1921 Census.

The downside of adding the information to the original blog is that, if a person has already read the blog, they’re not likely to go back and check for updates and therefore will “miss” the info provided by the 1921 Census.

The upside of creating a “new” blog (which would include a link to the original one) is that a person who has subscribed to my blog will get an “alert” when the new blog is published.  As well, both blogs should come up in a google search.

After thinking about it ad nauseam, I decided to add the 1921 Census to the original blog — because, in most cases, the 1921 Census did not provide any new “startling” information about that ancestor.

crossed_fingersAnd I thought it was better to have all of the info that I’ve found for that ancestor in the same blog.

Fingers crossed that it is the correct decision!

However, I think that there has to be one exception to this “rule”.  And that is, if the additional information opens up a “pandora’s box” of new (or contrary) information about that ancestor.  Then I will write an additional blog.

For example, the 1921 Canadian Census provided more information about Russell and Susan Colvin Cudney.

Russell and Susan married on 2 Aug 1912 in Delaware, Middlesex County (Ontario).  The next census after their marriage was taken on 1 Jun 1921.  The 1921 Census revealed that Russell and Susie had 4 children between the time they married and the 1921 Census!

In 1921, the family was living in Delaware and they were renting a single-storey wooden house with 6 rooms.  Russell was a labourer earning $550 a year.

1921 Census - Russell and Susie Cudney and Family

The following are the names of Russell and Susie’s children that were listed in the 1921 Census — and all the information that I’ve found about them, as of the date of this blog.

  • Gladys Hazel Cudney is the oldest child and she was 7 years old in 1921.  I found her birth document on Ancestry; she was born in Delaware (Ontario) on 12 Sep 1913.  That’s all that I could find about Gladys.

Birth - Gladys Hazel Cudney

  • Velma M. Cudney was 6 years old in 1921.  Therefore she was born in about 1915.  I googled her name and approximate date of birth and a photograph of her headstone came up!

Update on 2 Oct 2014:  I replaced the photograph of the headstone that is on Find-a-grave with a photograph that I took personally.  I also added the photograph of the stone that has Velma’s date of birth and death engraved on it.

Headstone - Ellis Winston and Velma Cudney Axford

Headstone - Velma M Axford

Birth - Ellis Winston AxfordFinding this headstone led to research on Velma’s husband, Ellis Winston Axford.

I discovered that Ellis Winston Axford was the son of William Walden Axford  and Clara Evelyn Hunt.

Ellis was born in Westminster Township, Middlesex County, Ontario (Canada) on 26 Nov 1912.

According to an on-line family tree, Velma and Ellis had two children:

      • Francis Axford and
      • Russell Winston Axford

After an exhaustive search, I couldn’t find any information about Francis (see below for Update on 10 Apr 2014) — but I did find a transcription of Russell’s birth announcement, published in the St. Thomas Times-Journal on 11 Dec 1947.  Russell was born on 10 Dec 1947.

Birth Announcement - Russell Winston Axford

Velma Cudney Axford died in 1978 and Ellis Axford in 1997 (see the photograph above of their headstone).  They are buried together in Woodhull Cemetery in Delaware Township, Middlesex County (Ontario).

  • Mary “Marguerite” Cudney was 4 years old in 1921 — so she was born in about 1917.

For Ontario (Canada), birth documents only up until 1913 have been released and indexed on Ancestry.  So I don’t know exactly when Marguerite was born.  I did find a 1940 Voter’s List though, and Marguerite was living with her parents in Delaware (Ontario).

Voter's List - Marguerite Cudney

And according to a transcription by the Elgin County branch of the Ontario Genealogical Society, Marguerite married Thomas Henry Essey.  Their marriage announcement was published in the St. Thomas Times Journal on 29 May 1942.

Marriage Announcement - Thomas Essey and Mary Marguerite Cudney

Birth - Thomas EsseyThomas Henry Essey is the son of Percy Thomas Essey and Melissa McCauley and he was born on 6 Mar 1911 in Middlesex County (Ontario).

Thomas died in 1979 and Marguerite in 1998.  They are buried in Oakland Cemetery in Delaware (Ontario).  Next time I go there, I’ll take a photograph and update this blog.

Death and Burial - Marguerite Cudney Essey Death and Burial - Thomas Essey

  • William Cudney is the youngest child of Russell and Susie that was listed in the 1921 Census.  He was only 14 days old when the census was taken on about 1 Jun 1921.  Sadly, William died in 1925, when he was just about 4 years old.  He is buried in the same plot as his sister Marguerite.

Death and Burial - William Cudney

I titled this blog Pandora’s Box for a couple of reasons:

  • Because, as noted above, additional documents/information that is published and/or that I find while doing further research can open up a “pandora’s box” of even more documents and information!!
  • And because I’ve discovered even MORE “inter marriages” within the Evison family!  A definition for pandora’s box is: a process that once begun, generates many complicated problems. 

The “complicated problem” in the case of the Evison family is trying to figure out the relationships between people in family tree.  I don’t even know where to start to figure out and explain the relationships.  So I made up a chart 🙂  The coloured dots indicate those ancestors who are siblings.  It’s definitely a Pandora’s Box!!!!

(Click for a larger version of the chart)

Pandora's Box

Update on 10 Apr 2014:

Thanks to addtional information provided (see comments below), I now know that the correct spelling of “Francis” is “Frances”.   Frances Virginia Axford was born in 1941 and died in London (Ontario) on 6 Dec 2013.  Her married name is Perry.

Obituary - Frances Virginia Axford Perry

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Doubting Thomases, Part Three

Parts One and Two of Doubting Thomases is about the six oldest children of Alfred Francis Thomas and Sarah Ellen “Nellie” Finch.  Part Three is about their four youngest.

As with Parts One and Two, there is a caveat about the information in the blogs.  If there isn’t a supporting document, then the information can be considered as doubtful — ergo the reason for the title of the blogs about the Thomas family 🙂

Floyd (aka Lloyd) Francis Thomas

Birth - Floyd ThomasFloyd Francis Thomas is the 7th child of Alfred and Nellie.  He was born on 28 Jun 1912 in Westminister Township, Middlesex County (Ontario).

As so often happens in the Evison family, he was registered with one name when he was born — but was known by a different name!

In this case, he was registered as “Floyd”, but growing up, he was called “Lloyd”.

In 1921, Lloyd was living with his family in a six room frame house in Westminster Township.  Lloyd’s father earned his living as a farmer.

1921 Census - Alfred and Nellie Thomas and Family

I found Lloyd’s headstone in the Scottsville Cemetery in Scottsville, Middlesex County, (Ontario).  He died in 1961 — but I don’t know where.

On the headstone, it says that Lloyd is “the beloved husband of Marion Frances Mansfield”.  The date of birth for Marion is 1922 and the date of death is 2001.

Headstone - Lloyd Francis Thomas and Marilyn MansfieldUsing this information, I located Marion’s obituary.  Marion was born on 20 May 1922 and she died suddenly at St. Thomas Elgin General Hospital in St. Thomas, Elgin County (Ontario), on 24 Nov 2001, or 25 Nov 2001 — her obituary mentions both dates??

Obituary - Marion Frances Thomas

Lloyd and Marion had two children:

  • Larry Francis Thomas who married Diana and they had four children: Katelyn, Kelsey, Kimberley and Kristin
  • Marilyn Thomas who married Ralph Smith and they had two children: Michael and Sheri.

Howard Frederick Thomas

Howard Frederick Thomas, Alfred and Nellie’s 8th child, was 4 years old in the 1921 Census; therefore, he was born in about 1916.

bebe15As of the date of this blog, Ancestry has published birth documents only up until 1913, so no original birth registration is available for Howard.

But I found an Ancestry tree that said that he was born on 17 Jun in Tempo, Middlesex County (Ontario) — but there are no sources listed.

According to that family tree, as well as a brief mention in Delaware and Westminster Townships: Together In History Volume Two, Howard married Evelyn Mae Williams in 1937 and they lived near Talbotville in Elgin County (Ontario).

Howard and Evelyn are listed in the 1965 Voter’s List, living at R.R. 7, St. Thomas (Ontario).

Voters List - Howard and Evelyn Thomas

Evelyn died in 1974 and Howard in 1984.  They are buried together in McArthur Cemetery, Southwold Township, Middlesex County (Ontario).   The headstone says “Mother” and “Father” so I assume that Evelyn and Howard had children — but I couldn’t find any information about how many children or what their names may be.

Headstone - Howard F and Evelyn Mae Thomas

Gerald Ross Thomas

Gerald Ross Thomas was three years old in 1921.  So I assume that he was born in about 1918.  Again, no birth document is available on Ancestry — yet 😉

According to a short write-up about Gerald in Delaware and Westminster Townships: Together In History Volume Two and other information that I found on the internet,  Gerald married Eula Audrey Smale, daughter of Frederick Clifton Smale and Effie Isabelle Marr, in September of 1945.

Marriage - Gerald Thomas and Eula Smale

St Thomas Times Journal (transcription by the Elgin County Branch of the Ontario Genealogical Society)

On the 1946 Voter’s List, Gerald and Eula are living in Glanworth (Ontario).  Gerald is working as a mechanic.

Voter's List - Gerald and Eula ThomasGerald and Eula had one child, a daughter named Donna.  Eula died in 1987 and Gerald in Sarnia (Ontario) in 1993, but I don’t know where they are buried.

Doris Winnifred Thomas

Doris Winnifred Thomas is the youngest child of Alfred and Nellie Thomas.  In Delaware and Westminster Townships: Together In History Volume Two , it says that Doris married Roy George Bramley.

I found Roy’s obituary and he passed away in Strathroy, Middlesex County (Ontario), on 5 Feb 2012 in his 91st year.

Obituary - Roy George Bramley

It also says that he and Doris had been married for 65 years — which means that they married in about 1947.

Marriage - Roy Bramley and Doris Thomas

St. Thomas Times Journal (transcription by the Elgin County Branch of the Ontario Genealogical Society)

Doris died the year after Roy, on 10 Apr 2013, at the Country Terrace Nursing Home in Komoka, Middlesex County (Ontario).  She was in her 85th year.

Obituary - Doris Winnifred Bramley

One of Doris and Roy’s sons posted a photograph of their headstone on his Facebook page — but it doesn’t say where they are buried.

Headstone - Roy and Winnifred Thomas Bramley

The obituaries for Doris and Roy list the names of their children and spouses:

  • Betty (m: Barry Sitzes)
  • Carol (m: John Wilkin)
  • Brenda (m: Wayne Tidball)
  • Ron (m: Katherine Howey)
  • Tom (m: Heather)
  • Edward (m: Pamela Stevenson)
  • Paul (m: Linda) and
  • Susan

The Bramleys

 Barry & Betty Bramley Sitzes           Paul & Linda Bramley              Ron & Katherine Howey Bramley

This is a map of most of the places mentioned in this blog to give you some idea of where they are located.

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Doubting Thomases, Part Two

Part One of Doubting Thomases was about the five oldest children of Sarah Ellen “Nellie” Finch and Alfred Francis Thomas.

My original plan was to include the five youngest children of Nellie and Alfred in Part Two of Doubting Thomases.

But I managed to find more information about Nellie and Alfred’s sixth youngest child, Gertrude Evelyn Thomas, than I have for the others.  So I decided to publish an “exclusive” blog about her and her descendants.

Birth - Gertrude Evelyn ThomasGertrude Evelyn Thomas was born in Lambeth, Middlesex County (Ontario), on 4 Sep 1910.

In the two Canadian censuses that have been released since her birth (i.e. 1911 and 1921), Gertrude was living with her family in Westminster Township, Middlesex County (Ontario).

Border Crossing - Gertrude Evelyn ThomasOn 30 Nov 1932, 22-year-old Gertrude crossed the US/Canada border, accompanied by a friend named George Rickett.  Gertrude and George were on their way to visit Gertrude’s great uncle, George Evison.

Birth - George A. RickettGeorge was born to Robert Rickett and Jennie Kerr on 10 Jun 1901 in Leeds (Ontario).

Eventually Gertrude married George Rickett but I don’t know exactly when or where.

scratch-head03-idea-animated-animation-smiley-emoticon-000416-largeThe union of Gertrude Thomas and George Rickett is yet another example of the complicated relationships in the Evison family!!  George is the brother of Gordon Rickett.  Gordon married Dorothea Evison who is Gertrude’s mother’s first cousin.  So that makes Dorothea and Gertrude sisters-in-law as well as 2nd cousins — I think anyway!??

Ancestors - Gertrude Thomas and George Rickett

In 1940,  Gertrude, George and their 3-year-old son, Alfred, were living in Detroit, Wayne County, Michigan (USA).  George was working as an assembler in an automobile factory.

1940 Census - George, Gertrude and Alfred Rickett

Gertrude gave birth to a second son later that year.  David Norman Rickett was born on 30 Oct 1940 in Detroit.

On 4 Aug 1946, Gertrude applied for a Resident Alien’s Border Crossing Certificate.  On her application, Gertrude was described as 5 ft 4 in tall, 130 lbs — with a fair complexion, red hair and gray eyes.

Border Crossing ID Card - Gertrude Evelyn Rickett

George died at the age of 85 on 16 July 1986 in Grosse Pointe, Wayne, Michigan (USA).  And Gertrude passed away on 6 May 2000 in Iosco County, Michigan (USA).  She was 89 years old when she died.  I don’t know where either is buried.

As noted above, Gertrude and George Rickett had at least two children:

  • Alfred:  I haven’t found any information about Alfred after the 1940 Census.  He was born in Michigan (USA) in about 1937.
  • David Norman:  David was born on 30 Oct 1940 in Detroit, Wayne, Michigan (USA).  He married Carol Ann Meier (date/place unknown).  When he was only 63 years old, David died — on 29 Jun 2004.  As of the date of this blog, I do not know his cause of death nor where he is buried.

Birth and Death - David N Rickett

David and Carol had at least one child: David Norman Jr.   From the indexes that I’ve found on-line, I think that David Jr. was born in Mio, Oscoda, Michigan (USA) in about 1979.  He married Monica Kendall who was born on the 18 Nov 1981.

David is/was a musician, playing bass for a heavy metal group called “Self Infliction”.

Logo - Self-Infliction

I found a photograph of David and Monica on Monica’s Facebook page.  It looks like David Jr. inherited his grandmother’s red hair!

David Jr and Monica Kendall Rickett

David Jr and Monica Kendall Rickett – from Monica’s Facebook page

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