Thursday, March 5, 2015

Searching the Obituary Daily Times

One of those sites that have become invaluable to me for locating fairly recent obituaries is the Obituary Daily Times. If you have a subscription to Ancestry.ca you can also find the Obituary Daily Times in their collections under "Web: Obituary Daily Times Index, 1995-Current". But the Obituary Daily Times web site is constantly updated so use that whenever possible.

Not all newspapers are indexed by the fabulous contributors. However, the list of publications that are or have been indexed can be found on the Publications page. Just be aware that the Obituary Daily Times DOES NOT have the obituaries. It is just an index to help you find the newspaper that does have the obituary or notice of death.

There are two ways you can use this site for your genealogy research. The first is to subscribe to their daily (or twice daily) e-mail. You do that by sending an e-mail to GEN-OBIT-L-request AT rootsweb.com (replace the "AT" with the "@" symbol) and putting "subscribe" in the body of the e-mail. No subject for the e-mail is required. However, since I already get enough e-mails every day I make use of the second option and that is searching their online index.

Searching the Obituary Daily Times database is as simple as going to their search form found at http://obits.rootsweb.ancestry.com/cgi-bin/obit.cgi. There you can search for anything recorded in the index.

For example, I'm looking for recent obituaries for Jenkins. For the keywords I just type in Jenkins. That returns back almost 18,000 possible matches for people with a surname of Jenkins, maiden surname of Jenkins, previously married surname of Jenkins, people who died in Jenkins township in Pennsylvania. That is just a few too many to review in my lifetime. Yet I can also use more than one keyword in the search. In this case, I am looking for any obituaries in the index for any Jenkins in New Brunswick. For the keywords I just use Jenkins NB. Just by adding "NB" I now only have 60 possible obituaries to look through. Below is a snippet of what was returned:

BEERS, Constance (JENKINS)[KING]; 92; St John NB>Auburndale FL; Tampa Trib; 2007-9-18; evallie
CYR, Margaret Helen (JENKINS); 74; Woostock NB; Telegraph Journal; 2002-11-22; jdlmwc
FIDLER, Maxine J (JENKINS); 78; York NB>Troy MT; Missoulian; 1999-4-16; hharley
HANLEY, Dorothy "Dot" (JENKINS); 88; Saint John NB>Halifax NS; Telegraph Journal (NB); 2005-8-31; jdlmwc
HANLEY, Dorothy Parker (JENKINS); 88; Saint John NB>Halifax NS; Chron-Herald; 2005-8-31; kbutler
HEDBERG, Brenda J (ESTEY)[JENKINS]; ; Saint John NB; Telegraph Journal; 2003-3-8; jdlmwc
JENKINS, Betsy Maria (PAGET); 89; Plaster Rock NB; Daily Gleaner; 2007-2-19; rmdi
JENKINS, Betsy Marie (PAGET); 89; Plaster Rock NB; Telegraph Journal; 2007-2-19; jdlmwc
JENKINS, Carl Beecher; 76; Minto NB; Daily Gleaner; 2008-4-28; rmdi
JENKINS, Carmen A (OUELLETTE); ; Saint John NB; Telegraph Journal; 2011-12-19; jdlmwc
JENKINS, David G Rev; ; Rothesay NB; Telegraph Journal; 2013-8-14; jdlmwc
JENKINS, Donald M; ; Saint John NB; Telegraph Journal; 2008-4-19; jdlmwc
JENKINS, Donald Osbourne; 73; Fredericton NB; Saint John E-T-G; 1990-9-28; jdlmwc
JENKINS, Doris Gertrude (CUMBERLAND); 90; Hampton NB; Telegraph Journal; 2008-11-11; jdlmwc
JENKINS, Dow A "Dowie"; ; Nauwigewauk NB; Telegraph Journal; 2006-10-31; jdlmwc
JENKINS, Edith Gertrude (SMITH); 96; Long Reach NB>Cumberland MD; Cumberland T-N; 2006-3-14; gschubert
JENKINS, Eileen Ruth (TOMPKINS); 61; Waterville NB; Daily Gleaner; 2009-4-21; rmdi
JENKINS, Ellen "Nellie" (STACKHOUSE); 101; Medford ME>Saint John NB; Telegraph Journal; 2007-5-22; jdlmwc
JENKINS, Flora A (McGARITY); 77; Cambridge Narrows NB; Telegraph Journal; 2013-9-17; jdlmwc
JENKINS, Fred W "Roop"; 78; Saint John NB; Telegraph Journal; 2009-11-21; jdlmwc

Note how the index is formatted (taken from the Obituary Daily Times Contributors' Handbook):
Surname, Firstname; Age; Place of Birth>Death; Pub Name; Pub Date; Tagname

The surnames are always in upper case and if a maiden surname is provided in the obituary then it is included between "()". If the person was married previously and the previous married surname (or surnames) is in the obituary then that too is included but encased in "[]".

The age, if provided in the obituary, is recorded.

You will see sometimes the place is listed like "Long Reach NB>Cumberland MD". This means that the place of birth is also recorded. In this case the obituary stated that the person was born in Long Reach, New Brunswick and died in Cumberland, Maryland.

The publication name can be a challenge since often the full publication name isn't typed in but instead a short form or abbreviation is used. You can find all the publication name abbreviations on their Publications page. Always double-check the abbreviation to make sure you are looking for the correct newspaper.

The date of publication is in the format of YYYY-M-D. So a publication date of 2003-3-8 converts to March 8th, 2003. Note that there are no leading zeros for the months and days.

Finally the tagname is the code for the contributor's name.

Let's look at the line "JENKINS, Fred W "Roop"; 78; Saint John NB; Telegraph Journal; 2009-11-21; jdlmwc". I note that his nickname appears to be "Roop". An unusual nickname but since I've been researching his line for some time now I know that his grandmother's name is Lena Garner Roop. According to this obituary he was 78 years old when he died in Saint John, New Brunswick. I should be able to find his obituary in the November 21st, 2009 edition of the Telegraph-Journal. I can either see if a local library or archive has this edition or I can check online to see if the Telegraph-Journal has an online presence (they do and their recent obituaries can be searched at http://telegraphjournal.canadaeast.com/obituaries.php).

I could have searched for Jenkins 2009 or Fred Jenkins and his entry in the index would have popped up. The search keywords can be anything recorded in the index.

Just remember, the Obituary Daily Times is just an index. You still have to locate the newspaper and read the obituary to confirm that it is for the person you are searching for.

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Canadian Census Enumerator Instructions

Many times as we do our research into the lives of our ancestors we come across census entries that cause us to scratch our head in bewilderment and confusion. Just why did the enumerator record the religion as "N.C." or the birth place as "U.C."? There must be a rational reason and many times there is. First of all, make sure you visit the Censuses page at Library and Archives Canada and read the various sections, especially the "About" page, for clues concerning abbreviations and when the enumerations took place.

However, the next challenge is to find out what were the instructions given to the enumerators. For those censuses taking place after the 1867 Confederation you can find PDF copies of the proclamations and/or manuals on several web sites such as the Internet Archive, Library and Archives Canada, or even the University of Ottawa.

For those censuses taken before Canadian Confederation it becomes a little more of a challenge. Fortunately the Programme de recherche en démographie historique (PRDH), Département de Démographie, Université de Montréal as part of their historical census database construction projects for the Canadian censuses of 1851/52 and 1881 has pulled together some transcriptions to help understand those censuses.



Those excerpts may be found in David P. Gagan's article "Enumerator's Instructions for the Census of Canada 1852 and 1861" in the "Histoire Sociale/Social History", Vol. VII, No. 14 (November 1974). Use WorldCat to see if you can find a copy close to you to peruse.

For those more recent census enumerations of Canada such as those taken in 1926, 1931, 1936, 1941, and 1946 a search of the Internet Archive can locate the enumerator manuals.


Tip: Save those PDF files to your computer just in case they disappear from the various web sites.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Missing Sub-Districts in the Canadian Censuses?

One of the key resources we make use of in order to track our ancestors over the years are the nominal census enumerations. In Canada, for most provinces1, we have records of the decennial nominal census enumerations from 18512 to 19213 available to us. In the Prairie Provinces there are also the 1906 and 1916 censuses available. All except for the 1921 census are available on the Library and Archives Canada web site on their Censuses page. There is even the 1870 census of that brand new province of Manitoba.

Yet have you ever run into the problem where you just can't locate the family in a specific census?

You know the family was in the township and county during the census so why can't you find them using Ancestry or FamilySearch?

Beyond the obvious issues of horrible handwriting making transcriptions difficult or the family being missed by the enumerator (it happens) there is another reason ... the pages may have been lost. This is more common in the enumerations prior to Confederation. A good example is the 1851 census enumeration of Bytown4. If you had ancestors residing in the East and West sub-districts then you are in luck. However, if the family you are interest in was in the Centre sub-district then stop banging your head against the monitor or keyboard trying to find them in the census5. The census records for that sub-district didn't survive.

District: 46 - Bytown (town)

Sub-district NumberSub-district Name
442East
443West
444​Centre (census records have not survived)

Yet how do you know if the pages from the census for a sub-district survived the ravages of time? There we are fortunate that Library and Archives Canada has listed all the numbers and names of the various districts and sub-districts. On each of the About pages for each census there is a link to the "Districts and Sub-districts" for that census. Go to the Districts and Sub-districts, select the province in question and a list of the districts and sub-districts will be display.

While you are on the About page take some time to read what schedules have also survived and have been microfilmed (and later digitized). For example, the 1871 census of Canada has all 9 schedules preserved while for the 1881 census of Canada only "Schedule 1, Nominal return of the living" has been preserved.

Tip: Before you go insane looking for records that may not exist become familiar with what records have survived.



1. Nova Scotia didn't start listing everyone in a household until the the 1871 census.
2. Sometimes also called the 1852 census since they didn't get around to taking the census until 12 Jan 1852.
3. The 1921 census of Canada is available for free on Ancestry to those using an Internet Service Provider in Canada.
4. Now called Ottawa. 
5. Don't give up though. Have you checked the city or county directories for a listing for the head of household?

Monday, February 23, 2015

Extra Children or a Bigger Mystery - Wrap-up

When we last left the tale of Marjorie and Louetta at the end of January (see Extra Children or a Bigger Mystery - Part 4) I had a hypothesis that they were not the children of Margaret McKinnon and Joseph Bailey but actually of John Nelson and a Christina. Yet I needed to confirm this belief and clean up some loose ends by ordering several birth, marriage, and death registrations from Manitoba. It only took a few weeks to have the paper copies mailed to me (and longer for me to get to writing this post).

The first document of interest is the marriage of John Wm Stratford to Christina A. Nelson on 7 Nov 1883 in Winnipeg.

Manitoba Vital Statistics, Marriages, 1883-06-001701, John William Stratford-Christina A Nelson; Manitoba Vital Statistics Agency, Winnipeg.
Manitoba Vital Statistics, Marriages, 1883-06-001701, John William Stratford-Christina A Nelson; Manitoba Vital Statistics Agency, Winnipeg
Here we see that Christina was born in Ontario, she is a widow, and her parents are Alexander and Anna McKinnon. Could her parents be the Alexander McKinnon and Ann McDonald that we found in part 4 when an Annie McKinnon married John Nelson in 1873? Christina A. Nelson here is listed as a widow so it is a possibility. But we still have the issue of Annie McKinnon vs. Christina A. Nelson (nee McKinnon).

There is the birth of an unnamed female on 11 Oct 1884 that seems to shed some light on her name. In that registration of birth this unnamed female child is the daughter of John Wm. Stratford and Christina Annie McKinnon.

Manitoba Vital Statistics, Birth Registration 1884-06-004388 (1884), Unnamed Stratford (female); Manitoba Vital Statistics Agency, Winnipeg.
Manitoba Vital Statistics, Birth Registration 1884-06-004388 (1884), Unnamed Stratford (female); Manitoba Vital Statistics Agency, Winnipeg.
There we see that the Christina A. Nelson (nee McKinnon) in the marriage registration is probably Christina Annie McKinnon. But we still have a few loose ends and questions to be answered.

In the 1891 census we had Louetta and Margery Nelson listed as step-daughters of John W. Stratford but the wife of John W. Stratford is Sarah not a Christina or Annie. That is why I ordered the marriage registration for John William Stratford and Sarah Givens. I wanted to confirm that John William Stratford was a widower and find out who he married.

Manitoba Vital Statistics, Marriages, 1891-06-001114, John William Stratford-Sarah Givens; Manitoba Vital Statistics Agency, Winnipeg.
Manitoba Vital Statistics, Marriages, 1891-06-001114, John William Stratford-Sarah Givens; Manitoba Vital Statistics Agency, Winnipeg.
So yes, John William Stratford was a widower and had remarried prior to when the 1891 census was taken starting in April 1891. Now the 1891 census makes some sense. Christina Annie McKinnon died sometime between the birth of a unnamed daughter on 11 Oct 1884 and John William Stratford's marriage to Sarah Givens on 11 Mar 1891. I have yet to find her death registration or where she was buried though.

What about Marjorie and Louetta is there anything that can connect them to their parents? I didn't find a marriage registration for Louetta but I did order the marriage registration for Marjorie to Herbert Alan Waterhouse (see Extra Children or a Bigger Mystery - Part 3 for that initial possible connection).

Manitoba Vital Statistics, Marriages, 1917-06-046011, Herbert Alan Waterhouse-Marjorie V Nelson; Manitoba Vital Statistics Agency, Winnipeg.
Manitoba Vital Statistics, Marriages, 1917-06-046011, Herbert Alan Waterhouse-Marjorie V Nelson; Manitoba Vital Statistics Agency, Winnipeg.
Here we get confirmation of what was recorded in "The Carberry Plains: 75 Years of Progress" where Marjorie is mentioned as being a nurse and marrying a Mr. H. A. Waterhouse in 1917. The marriage registration has John Nelson and Annie McKinnon as the parents of Marjorie V. Nelson. Those are the same names as listed in the marriage of John Nelson and Annie McKinnon in 1873. This is a very good thing.

However, there is still one more document that I ordered and that is the death of John Nelson on 22 Mar 1883. The age of John, birth place, occupation, and religion (Bible Christian) all match so it is highly likely this is the right person. He died seven months before the widow Christina A. Nelson married John William Stratford. Everything seems to line up quite nicely.

In that original chart it seems that "Margory" and "Lousia" are actually Marjorie and Louetta. Just how is Marjorie and Louetta connected to the McKinnon tree you ask? (OK, you probably didn't.) Using all of the records together I believe I can state that those two women are still the grandchildren of Alexander McKinnon and Ann McDonald but through their daughter Christina Annie McKinnon's marriage to John Nelson.

Thursday, February 5, 2015

The Changing Name of Caspard van Den Bergh - Addendum

In my last post "The Changing Name of Caspard van Den Bergh" I had mentioned that "[t]he perfect document would have all his known aliases but I'd be happy just find some document with two of the known names listed for Caspard van Den Bergh." It just so happened that I hadn't looked hard and long enough. As I continued to look for additional documents a lovely green leaf on Ancestry popped up for both Caspard and his son Gary. It was for a New York Passenger List for their arrival in the Port of New York on 21 May 1933 on board the Saturnia.

Ancestry.com, "New York Passenger Lists, 1820-1957," database, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com/ : accessed 5 Feb 2015), entry for Caspard Van Den Bergh, arriving 21 May 1933.
Ancestry.com, "New York Passenger Lists, 1820-1957," database, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com/ : accessed 5 Feb 2015), entry for Caspard Van Den Bergh, arriving 21 May 1933.
Note the dark typewritten comment above Caspard's name. There it is written "Proff. Known Wash West  Guy"

Yet one record doesn't necessarily help establish that it is true. So back to Ancestry to search for any additional immigration records. There were several more found but the real winner was the one when on 16 Sep 1934 Capard and his second wife Rosalie arrived in Seattle, Washington, USA from a trip to Japan. The immigration official was kind enough to write above Caspard's entry the following, "Known as Guy West".

"Washington, Passenger and Crew Lists, 1882-1961," database, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com/ : accessed 5 Feb 2015), entry for Caspard Litrio Van Den Bergh (known as Guy West), arriving 16 Sep 1934.
"Washington, Passenger and Crew Lists, 1882-1961," database, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com/ : accessed 5 Feb 2015), entry for Caspard Litrio Van Den Bergh (known as Guy West), arriving 16 Sep 1934.

I think these two documents go a long way in establishing that Caspard Van den Bergh and Guy West are the same person. Combine these documents with the census and other records in "The Changing Name of Caspard van Den Bergh" post I think it goes along way in making the connection between Caspard's various names.


Tip: Remember that each record you find can provide a clue or hint to solving that supposed brick wall.

The Changing Name of Caspard van Den Bergh


Once again I'm looking at one of the side branches of my family tree and comparing a family tree drawn up on January 1990 to the events and records I can locate online in 2015. You may recall that in the "Extra Children of a Bigger Mystery - Part 1" I was also using a hand drawn family tree as a guide post in figuring out those collateral branches. Both of these hand drawn trees appear to have been created by the same person.

Hand-drawn Family Tree for Martin m. Innes (created Jan 1990)
Hand-drawn Family Tree for Martin m. Innes (created Jan 1990)

The side branch I am look at this past week is that of Robert Martin and Carrie Young. As with the other tree a number of the names listed are nicknames or abbreviations. For examine, Carrie Young's full name is Caroline Elizabeth Young. Some names have provided interesting challenges. The marriage of Kathleen to a "Cowhut" was a curious one. She actually married Alex Coward but since she disliked that surname and on the connotations surrounding it she always went by the married surname of "Cowaret"1.


Cowhut ... Cowaret ... Coward

When said out loud I can see the connection. Yet that isn't the one name that has had me been baffled. At least some of her life had been documented and recorded. The name that has provides some challenge is that of 'Cap' West, the husband of Grace Martin

Since I have the tree on Ancestry that is the place I started looking. I have no problems with looking at the various public family trees on Ancestry. I just don't trust any of them and the conclusions that have been made by others. Like the hand drawn tree above I make use of the public trees on Ancestry and elsewhere as guide posts and clues. But I don't ever link those people or trees into my tree. I look, read the source records, analyze the information, then make a judgment call to include or exclude based on what I have previously found.

Just a quick note before we go any further. I am skipping some of the explanations of how and why I find some of the records. Sometimes the route to locate a given record can be a strange or even circuitous one where I look at a number of records at once and that provides the clues to get to the key record I mention.

One record that I came across in several trees was that of a "Grace Olive Walsh nee Martin (Vandenbergh former married name)" dated 23 Sep 1938. This was found in the "Border Crossings: From Canada to U.S., 1895-1956" collection on Ancestry.


Ancestry.com, "Border Crossings: From Canada to U.S., 1895-1956," database on-line, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com/ : accessed 3 Feb 2015), entry for Grace Olive Walsh, 23 Sep 1938; Original data: Records of the Immigration and Naturalization Service, RG 85. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration.
Ancestry.com, "Border Crossings: From Canada to U.S., 1895-1956," database on-line, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com/ : accessed 3 Feb 2015), entry for Grace Olive Walsh, 23 Sep 1938; Original data: Records of the Immigration and Naturalization Service, RG 85. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration.

There were several interesting statements recorded on this record:
  • She had been denied admission into Canada
  • She last resided at 1913 E Pine Street in Seattle, King County, Washington, USA
  • Her destination has been her mother Mrs. C. E. Martin, 204 18th Street, North Vancouver, British Columbia
But as we all know2, there may be additional details on the back of these card. The back of this card is even more interesting.

Ancestry.com, "Border Crossings: From Canada to U.S., 1895-1956," database on-line, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com/ : accessed 3 Feb 2015), entry for Grace Olive Walsh, 23 Sep 1938, back of card; Original data: Records of the Immigration and Naturalization Service, RG 85. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration.
Ancestry.com, "Border Crossings: From Canada to U.S., 1895-1956," database on-line, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com/ : accessed 3 Feb 2015), entry for Grace Olive Walsh, 23 Sep 1938, back of card; Original data: Records of the Immigration and Naturalization Service, RG 85. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration.

Some interesting tidbits are recorded (other than having two highballs before getting on stage last night):
  • She has a daughter Dorothy that is residing with Grace's mother
  • She lives with her brother Arthur R Martin in Seattle
  • She claims US citizenship by way of her marriage on 8-16-16 to Caspard Letrio Vendenberg in San Mateo
  • She claims US citizenship by way of her marriage on 10-18-32 to Thos Wash at Seattle
  • She claims US citizenship by birth
Although there is no mention of Arthur on the hand drawn tree, I have been able to confirm that he is a child of Robert Martin and Caroline Young and thus a brother to Grace.

Note, there is no mention of a 'Cap' West. But Caspard does start with 'Cap', could that have been a nickname? Can we find her marriage to Caspard? Nothing found in California using the various California collections on Ancestry and Familysearch. However, since I do know she was residing in British Columbia for the 1911 census of Canada could she have married there or in Washington State. Nothing was found in British Columbia but the Digital Archives of the Washington State Archives did have a possible match. A search for Caspard and Martin on their site returned back only one match. That of a marriage between Caspard Van and Olive Martin. Yet that marriage is recorded as taking place in 1912 not 1916. Fortunately for me the entry also had a marriage certificate I could view and unlike many of the later certificates this had information on the parents.




Washington State Archives, "Marriage Records," database, Washington State Archives - Digital Archives (http://www.digitalarchives.wa.gov/ : accessed 3 Feb 2015), entry for Carpard Van and Olive Martin, married 16 Jun 1912.
Washington State Archives, "Marriage Records," database, Washington State Archives - Digital Archives (http://www.digitalarchives.wa.gov/ : accessed 3 Feb 2015), entry for Carpard Van and Olive Martin, married 16 Jun 1912.

This appears to be the right person. Olive Martin, the daughter of R. W. Martin and Caroline Young. But his name is listed as Caspard Van and the place and date of marriage is way off. Yet she may have been nervous or just couldn't recall the date and place of her first marriage.

Take a look at his profession ... yup, an actor. Of course we've never heard of people have a stage name or changing their names have we? How about Issur Danielovitch3 or Ramon Antonio Gerardo Estevez4 for example? Could that be an explanation of the 'Cap' West name? Easier in the business than explaining time and again how to spell his birth name?

Another search, this time for any Thomas Walsh marriages in Washington State, returned a marriage certificate for Thomas F Walsh and Grace Van den Bergh. They were married on 16 Oct 1933.
Although the information recorded doesn't include her parents names and the year and day of the marriage is off it seems like this is Grace's second marriage.

Washington State Archives, "Marriage Records," database, Washington State Archives - Digital Archives (http://www.digitalarchives.wa.gov/ : accessed 3 Feb 2015), entry for Thomas F Walsh and Grace Van den Bergh, married 16 Oct 1933.
Washington State Archives, "Marriage Records," database, Washington State Archives - Digital Archives (http://www.digitalarchives.wa.gov/ : accessed 3 Feb 2015), entry for Thomas F Walsh and Grace Van den Bergh, married 16 Oct 1933.

But still no closer to figuring out this 'Cap' West. But it does seem that Caspard Van is the same person as Caspard van Den Bergh. I do however find a few mentions of Caspard in the San Francisco Chronicle when on 24 Sep 1930 Grace O.  Van Denburgh files a divorce suit against Caspard L.5 and then on 10 Nov 1930 the divorce is granted in "Van den Burgh - Grace O. vs. Caspard O."6

There were two other clues I can use besides the marriage to Grace. They had at least two children, Dodie and Marjory. Maybe they will provide me with some clues. In the 1921 census of Canada there is a Dorothy Van and Margory Van listed as lodgers living in the same household as the widow Caroline Martin. I also find Dorothy and Margory Van heading up to Alaska. Could these be the same children as mentioned in the family tree chart?

In glancing at the various family trees on Ancestry I came across a funeral home record for Marjory/Margory. That record indicated that she was married to Glenn Willard (he's another one that caused me some grief with his names and this time an obituary provided both of his names) and her parents were Casper Van Den Burgh and Grace Martin7. That looks like a match. But does it get us any closer to this 'Cap' West person?

In the 1930 federal census of the United States there is a Grace O., Dorothy M., and Marjorie C. with the right approximate ages and they were all born in Canada (English speaking part). However they have the last name of West and the head of the household is Guy Toby West.

1930 U.S. census, San Francisco County, California, population schedule, San Francisco, enumeration district (ED) 181, sheet 1A, p. 144 [stamped], dwelling 2, family 11, Household of Guy Toby West; digital images, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com/ : accessed 4 Feb 2015); citing National Archives and Records Administration microfilm T626, roll 201; Original data: United States of America, Bureau of the Census. Fifteenth Census of the United States, 1930. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 1930. T626, 2,667 rolls.
1930 U.S. census, San Francisco County, California, population schedule, San Francisco, enumeration district (ED) 181, sheet 1A, p. 144 [stamped], dwelling 2, family 11, Household of Guy Toby West; digital images, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com/ : accessed 4 Feb 2015); citing National Archives and Records Administration microfilm T626, roll 201; Original data: United States of America, Bureau of the Census. Fifteenth Census of the United States, 1930. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 1930. T626, 2,667 rolls.

Could Guy Toby West be this 'Cap' West in the drawn up tree? Is Guy Toby West the same person as Caspard van Den Bergh? According to the divorce announcements Grace O. Martin and Caspard L. van Den Bergh were still married at the time of the census and she also hadn't married Thomas Walsh yet. But it is still a leap to go from Caspard van Den Bergh to 'Cap' West to Guy Toby West. Is there another clue that might just help?

Strangely enough, an out of country death record does provide an additional clue. Caspard L. van Den Bergh died in Mazatlán, Sinaloa, Mexico and fortunately the "Reports of Deaths of American Citizens Abroad, 1835-1974" collection on Ancestry had an image of his "Report of the Death of an American"8 form. On that form he listed a wife, Rosalie, and a son, Gary Guy van Den Bergh who was serving in the U.S. Navy in 1951. Caspard was also the proprietor and lived at "Toby's Motel" in Los Gatos, California. Hmmm ... Toby's Motel ... curious. A Google search for his son "Gary Guy Van Den Bergh" (regrettably from his family's point of view and great for a researcher's perspective) turned up a very recent obituary9 for him. There it mentions his "father Toby and mother Roaslie van Den Bergh".

All those documents, taken individually, would seem to indicate that 'Cap' West, Caspard van Den Bergh, Caspard Van, and Guy Toby West would be different people. However, when examined together they all point to one most likely conclusion ... they are all the same person. However, there are still clues to track down and documents to find. The perfect document would have all his known aliases but I'd be happy just find some document with two of the known names listed for Caspard van Den Bergh.

[05 Feb 2015 11:55 - Updated to reflect Caspard's spelling of his surname per his signature on his US World War 2 draft registration]


1. Canadian Museum of History, Virtual Museum Canada (http://www.virtualmuseum.ca/sgc-cms/expositions-exhibitions/fort_selkirk/english/ps/psmiss.html : accessed 4 Feb 2015), Kathleen Martin Cowaret, Fort Selkirk Power and Sovereignty: The Missionaries.

2. You do know to check the image before and after on Ancestry to see if there is an additional page or two? The Passenger List sheet is a prime example since many times they span two pages.

3. Kirk Douglas

4. Martin Sheen

5. GenealogyBank (http://www.genealogybank.com/ : accessed 4 Feb 2015), Divorce Suits Filed; citing the San Francisco Chronicle, 25 Sep 1930 edition, p 12, col 6.
 

6. GenealogyBank (http://www.genealogybank.com/ : accessed 4 Feb 2015), Divorces Granted; citing the San Francisco Chronicle, 11 Nov 1930 edition, p 10, col 6.

7. "California, San Francisco Area Funeral Home Records, 1895-1985," database, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com/ : accessed 3 Feb 2015), entry for Marjorie Cecilie Willard, died 25 Jun 1941; citing N. Gray and Company Funeral Records.

8. Ancestry.com, "Reports of Deaths of American Citizens Abroad, 1835-1974," database, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com/ : accessed 3 Feb 2015), entry for Caspard L Van den Bergh, died 9 Nov 1951.  

9. "Obituary for Gary Guy van Den Bergh," The Union Democrat, 3 Jun 2014, online archives (http://www.uniondemocrat.com/News/Obituaries/Obituaries-for-June-3-2014 : accessed 3 Feb 2015).  

Sunday, February 1, 2015

February Backup Reminder

Each week I read in the various genealogy related groups on Facebook another tale of woe from someone that has lost all their research due to a computer crash. My first reaction, although I never post it, is where the heck is your backup?

Just like you should always wear a seat belt when riding in a car then, along the same lines, you should always make backups of the information stored in your computer. In both cases those actions won't prevent a crash but the recovery time will hopefully be lessened.

Over a year ago I wrote several posts about the various backups methods that you can use. If you aren't making backups of your valuable genealogical and personal information on your computer then take the time to read the posts and put into place a backup plan. Those articles are:

Don't be the next victim of lost genealogy data!

Backup Now!

"Burned harddisk secumem 03" by secumem is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported.