Thursday, October 30, 2014

No Myth: A Phenomenon Occurs 15 Minutes Before Leaving the Family History Library

Looking back at my research trip of the past 11 days to the Family History Library in Salt Lake City, I have to laugh at what can now be documented as a true phenomenon. It is no longer a myth.

Every year our group from the Lake County (IL) Genealogical Society emphasizes a saying: 15 minutes before you have to leave the library, you will find something great!

This phenomenon couldn't be more true for me this year. For about eight days I was on the British which is the second floor of the basement. I was doing a lot of grunt work i.e. verifying, filling in, and taking digital images of my Lincolnshire, England finds. Nothing exciting was happening, especially doing that type of research work.

Yesterday, I saw my last few hours at the library. I decided instead of cranking away at microfilm for the five plus hours, I would look through some books and do a little background research on the history of Lincolnshire, England. That all went well and I got the information I wanted from one large book with much to much history to take on in a couple hours. So I just took digital images of the pages! Something more to do when I get home.

Being done with the books and with about 30 minutes left before I had to pack up to leave, I started poking around in Since I was in the family history library, I figured there might be a few things available on the website we can't get at home; ProQuest Obituaries is one.

Over the past few years, I haven't been able to find my great grandfather August F. Buschick's obituary or death notice. I was sure there was one of them but I've tried many times searching in various obituary indexes and came up empty. Not this time! Literally, with a little over 15 minutes before I had to pack up to catch the van for the airport, I typed into the search field just BUSCHICK... first person on the list was an Agnes F. Buschick. Who? That's a new name I thought. Then I noticed the date -- 16 Dec 1883. Hmmm, that's the same day as my great grandfather's burial... On closer look at the death notice once I had downloaded it to my laptop, Agnes' name was hard to read, but on second closer look, it actually turned out to be August F. Buschick! No wonder I couldn't find it! It was transcribed wrong...who would have thunk?

BUSCHICK – Saturday morning. Dec. 15, August F. Buschick, in his 58th year, from pleura-pneumonia. Funeral Sunday, Dec. 16, at 1:40 o'clock, from the residence 34 Orchard-st. Carriages to Rosehill. [Chicago Daily Tribune (1872-1922); Dec 16, 1883]
August Ferdinand Buschick as identified in the family album.

With a few moments remaining of my time in the family history library, I did manage to find and download several other Buschick's death notices. There are several more I didn't harvest from the site, but I'll do that some other time. Maybe my city library has an account, too.

So you see -- the phenomenon of 15-minutes isn't a myth!

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Aunt Elenor Buschick 1902-1903 and Great Aunt Emma (Voigt) Volkman 1858-1928

Tricking the weatherman with a surprise trip to a couple cemeteries in Chicago worked again! The day turned out to be perfect for taking pictures, too. Bob and I headed for Montrose Cemetery where there were a couple relatives on my mom's side. On our way home we would stop by St. Boniface Cemetery where Bob's paternal great grandparents are buried.

We had no luck at St. Boniface. As we entered through the main gate, the sign alerted us the cemetery office was several miles north in Evanston. Evidently several Catholic cemeteries are serviced by one office. We will have to do our St. Boniface adventure another day because we would get up to the cemetery office before closed; we didn't have time to walk the cemetery's too big.

Well, this post will have to be about our find in Montrose Cemetery located north of Bryn Mawr and Pulaski Roads on Chicago's north side. I knew who was buried there, I had a printout from a cousin of mine. So I wasn't surprised at all seeing the three flat headstones together. [I have put the images on Find A Grave.]

The cemetery office clerk was very nice and made copies of the gravesite information. It was interesting that the owner of the family plot was Edwin L. Buschick, but he is buried in Acacia Park Cemetery several miles west.

Photo taken by me.
There is a double headstone for two very young Helstrom children both dying in infancy. I don't know who they belong to -- yet. They could be my aunt Lydia (Buschick) and husband John Helstrom's infant daughters. Lydia and John married in 1910; one daughter died in 1910 and the other 1913, both less than four months old. 

Photo taken by me.
I knew who the other two headstones were for. The one on the right is for my aunt Elenor Buschick daughter of Edwin L. and Laura. Elenor died very young. She was born in March of 1902 and died in September of 1903. One of my cousins had sent me a photocopied picture which isn't too good, but it's the only one I have that's identified as Elinor. [Yes, there are several spellings of her name.]

Pictured below, Elinor is being held by my grandmother Laura (Voigt) with four of her older sisters and father also identified. I'm grateful to whoever identified these folks of mine. This picture looks like it was taken in the summer of 1903. Elinor died in September.

The other single stone (on the left) is my great aunt Emma (Voigt) Volkman's. She was my grandmother Laura's sister.

Photo taken by me.
Great aunt Emma was born in 1858 to Henry and Anna (Arnold) VOIGT. Emma married William J. VOLKMANN April 1889 in Chicago. Emma and William had a son Robert born about 1893 in Chicago. A family "story" has it that Harry Volkman, the retired Chicago weatherman, is William and Emma's grandson. There is no proof of this connection. Maybe he's the weatherman I'm tricking for nice cemetery adventure weather.

Emma Voigt Volkmann, identified in family album by aunt Florence.
Emma died on 13 Jun 1928 in Kankakee, Kankakee Co. (about an hour south of Chicago). I was curious why down there when I was sure they lived in Chicago. The 1900 federal census shows them living on 58th St., with son Robert. The 1910 census shows them living on north Armitage Ave. In the 1920 census, I was surprised to find Emma in the Kankakee State Hospital.

I checked the Illinois, Deaths and Stillbirths Index, 1916-1947 and found she was a "resident" of the state hospital. The information contained place, date of birth and death; parents were named along with her husband. The "comments" Length of residence in town where death occurred 15y 1m 18d. She was admitted in 1913.

The Kankakee State Hospital which is now the Samuel H. Shapiro Developmental Center. In 1877, it was the Illinois Eastern Hospital for the Insane, but by the time Emma was admitted, it was the called Kankakee State Hospital. On the 1920 census, she was listed as a "patient," 60 years old, and married.

Yet in Florida, on the 1920 census in Fort Myers, District 0107 on 24-26 January William can be found with son Robert 28. William is listed as a Farmer/home garden -- and a widower. I guess Emma must not have been well enough to ever be released from the mental hospital. 

William shows up again (unmarried) living with son Robert and daughter-in-law on the 1930 census, but not on the 1940. I found his listing on Find A Grave, buried in Fort Myers, Florida [Find A Grave Memorial #49508461]. According to the headstone, William died 28 August 1934. 
William J. Volkmann, identified in family album by aunt Florence.
This image can be found on Find A Grave website.