Monday, May 27, 2013

John Stoughtenburgh Prince Update

The other day I wrote about Mayor John S. Prince and speculated that his namesake was John Stoutenburgh, the son of Isaac Stoutenburgh and Elizabeth Will. I just had to know if my hunch was correct.

Isaac Stoutenburgh was a very prominent figure in New York City where John Prince's mother was born. Her mother was Bridget Turner who would have been a contemporary of Isaac's son, John Stoutenburgh. Charlotte's grandfather, John Turner, would have been a contemporary of Isaac Stoutenburgh. So I decided to look at the 1790 Census and some directories and records of New York City between American Revolution and 1800.

Isaac Stoutenburgh and his son John were merchants as was John Turner. Isaac Stoutenburgh and John Turner had business locations near one another. I did not find anything that would imply that the Stoutenburgh family and the John Turner family had a close relationship. Hence I was becoming less certain that John Stoughtenburgh Prince was named after John Stoutenburg.

Isaac Stoutenburgh was a colonel during the American Revolution. He represented New York City in the newly formed state's government. He was an alderman in New York City for many years. Isaac was the Commission of Forfeiture for the Southern District along with Pierre Van Cortlandt.

Although I cannot rule out that John Prince's namesake was John Stoutenburgh, I have a stronger sense that his mother chose his given name to honor her grandfather John Turner. Then she chose for a middlename Stoughtenburgh in honor of the more well-known person of her childhood, Isaac Stoutenburgh.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

John Stoughtenburgh Prince

A few years ago as I was researching my ancestry, I came across John Stoughtenburgh Prince. I found several books and websites that either mention this man or include a small biography of him. None of the articles or books gave me much information about his ancestors.

I had made the assumption that he might be a descendant of Pieter Stoutenburg based on his middle name through his mother. However, I did not rule out that he might be a Stoutenburg descendant from his father's family. At that time, I was not able to find anything that would connect him to Pieter Stoutenburg.

John Stoughtenburgh Prince settled at St. Paul, Minnesota about 1854. He was a banker and also held the office of mayor for several terms. From what I read, he was a very influential person in St. Paul during his life. He was the son of Joseph Prince and Charlotte Osborne and was born in Cincinnati, Ohio in 1821.

The only other Stoutenburg descendant who had lived in St. Paul before the late 20th Century was Frank Stoutenburg. I already knew that Frank Stoutenburg was born in Iowa but spent his childhood in the State of New York before heading west to Minnesota. Frank arrived in Minnesota around the time that John Stoughtenburgh Prince died. As far as I could tell there was no connection between these men.

I had hit a brick wall and decided to move on to another area of my research. But the other day that name popped up while I was searching for information on someone else. This time I came across a book published in 2009 that was authored by descendants of John Prince's sister, Amelia Prince, entitled John Broome and Rebecca Lloyd Their Descendants and Related Families 18th to 21st Centuries Volume 1.

Pages 149 - 151 of the book provided me with enough clues to resume my search to find a connection. Charlotte Osborne was born in New York City in 1797. Joseph Prince was born in Boston, Massachusetts in 1788. He and Charlotte Osborne married in Cincinnati, Ohio in 1818. The book gave no indication as to how these two met, nor why they were in Cincinnati in 1818. Joseph Prince's father was the mayor of Cincinnati in 1803 so it would appear that Joseph and his parents were in Ohio before 1803.

After the Revolutionary War, the US government paid soldiers of that war in land warrants. The warrants were mostly for land in what is now the State of Ohio in what was then the Northwest Territory (Ohio, Indiana, Michigan, Illinois, Wisconsin and parts of Minnesota). In March 1803, Ohio became a state and what was left of the Northwest Territory became the Indiana Territory. As parts of the original Northwest Territory became states what remained subsequently became the Illinois Territory, Michigan Territory, Wisconsin Territory and finally the Minnesota Territory.

It seemed to me very unlikely that Joseph Prince and his father had much contact with the Stoutenburgs of New York. When I learned from the book that Charlotte Osborne was born in New York City in 1797, I decided to look for the connection there. Her father, Bilious Ward Osborne was from New Haven, Connecticut but married in New York City Bridget Turner, the daughter of John Turner of New York City.

After Joseph Prince died in 1833, Charlotte was a widow with small children so it was only natural that she would remarry. According to the book, she married Gabriel Franchere in Detroit, Michigan and a Colonel Mack was a witness. Charlotte Osborne and Joseph Prince had a son named James Tallant Prince and a son named Andrew Mack Prince.

I could not find any direct relationship with the Stoutenburg family in New York City and wondered if their sons might be named after influential friends or business relations. Since Col. Mack was at witness at Charlotte Osborne's second marriage, I did some research on an Andrew Mack because one son was Andrew Mack Prince. I found that Col. Andrew Mack was in the Ohio Assembly and ran for mayor of Cincinnati in 1829, the same year in which Andrew Mack Prince was born. Col. Andrew Mack was the founder of the Detroit Free Press and was a mayor of Detroit.

Next I turned to James Tallant Prince. I wondered if there was a James Tallant living in Cincinnati about the time that James Tallant Prince was born. Well, there was! I found a court case in Louisiana in 1830 in which a James Tallant was involved. He was the owner of a steamship, Walter Scott, in Cincinnati.

Now I wondered if there was a John Stoutenburgh in Cincinnati, Ohio about the time the John Stoughtenburgh Prince was born. I haven't found any such person. Then I next wondered if there was a connection to Charlotte's family when she lived in New York City. I haven't found a clear link but Isaac Stoutenburgh was a very wealthy merchant and auctioneer in New York around that time. He had a son, John Stoutenburgh, who followed in his father's footsteps.

I don't absolute proof that John Stoughtenburgh Prince was named for Isaac and Elizabeth Will Stoutenburgh's son John. But it does seem very likely to me.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

A Tale of Two Collingwoods

As a child, I was told that my great-great grandfather was born in Collingwood, Ontario, Canada. Since I was born in the United States as was my mother, her father and her grandfather, Collingwood, Canada was just a name. I had no idea where Collingwood was except that it was in the Province of Ontario.
When I first started the research on my ancestors, I found some death records of descendants of some of my great-great grandfather's siblings in Collingwood, Simcoe County. I assumed that he was born in Collingwood, Simcoe County. Later I discovered via census images that his parents had settled in Collingwood Township. Grey County, Ontario.
It doesn't surprise me when I come across family trees that have him and some of his siblings born in the wrong Collingwood. However, last week I came across a record that did surprise me because the record was made about a cousin by herself.
In 1958, at age 65, Edith Victoria Schnack filled out a statement of birth form. She was living in Edmonton, Alberta at that time. I found voter registrations that place her in Edmonton by 1945. And I found information about a son, Keith Schnack, who born in Edmonton in 1929.
From the information that she wrote, it appears that she knew very little about her parents or of her own birth. I am a bit surprised that she didn't know more about her parents because she was 21 years old when her mother died and 20 when her father died.
She responded to many of the questions on the form with "no knowledge." I am not surprised that she didn't know how much she weighed at birth or how many weeks in duration her mother's pregnancy was before her mother gave birth to her. The thing that did surprise me was that she did not know how old her parents were when she was born.
Edith gave her birth name as Edith Victoria Weldric (sic), her father's name as George Weldric and her mother's name as Caroline Gardiner. I have no idea why she would record her mother’s name as Caroline because I found no records in which Ann Caroline Gardiner Weldrick is identified as Caroline. In the census records, she is found as Ann or Anna. The name on her gravestone and death register is Ann Caroline Gardiner.
Edith believes that she was born in Collingwood, Collingwood Twp., Simcoe County, Ontario at Collingwood Hospital. I think that she confused Collingwood Township with the town. The Collingwood in Simcoe County is in Nottawasaga Township. Collingwood Township is in Grey County. Collingwood the town and Collingwood the township are proximate to each other with Grey to the west of Simcoe. Grey County was established in 1852, taken from Simcoe County. Collingwood Township borders the Georgian Bay and the town of Collingwood sits on the bay.
Edith’s parents were living at Concession 9, Lot 11 in Collingwood Township, Grey County, Ontario in 1901. Between an 1880 map of Collingwood Township and a Google map of the Town of Blue Mountain (current name of Collingwood Twp.), I was able to find where the family lived in 1901. The farm was located between the village of Ravenna and the Red Wing post office. The town of Collingwood is a little more than 8 miles east of their farm.
Her parents were living in Collingwood Township in 1891, 1901 and 1911. According to the Death Register, George Weldrick died on May 4, 1915 at his home at Concession 9, Lot 11 in Collingwood Twp., Grey Co. Ann Caroline Gardiner Weldrick died in Ravenna. Both are buried in the Thornbury-Clarksburg Union Cemetery in Collingwood Twp. Since it appears that George and Ann lived their married life near Ravenna, I suspect that Edith has confused Collingwood Township with the town.
But I would normally assume that a person would know where he/she was born so I decided to see if I could find a birth record of her birth in Simcoe County. I simply did a search at for a female born on October 9, 1893 in Simcoe County. I found 3 names but none matched with her. Because the 1901 census recorded the date of her birth as October 9, 1894, I looked for her on that date. Again a few females were born in Simcoe County on that date but none matched her. Repeating the search, I looked for a female born in October of 1893 and in October of 1894. The searches returned more names but no matches.
Since Edith wrote on her statement of birth that she was born in Simcoe County, I wondered if she had tried to get a record of her birth from the wrong place and assumed that no record of her birth existed. At that point, I decided to look for a record around those dates in Grey County. Again, nothing matched. The next tactic I took was to look at each image in the birth register for Grey County in 1893 and 1894. A curious result occurred. Many of the images of the birth records were either a delayed birth record or a statement of birth.
I wonder what happened at that time that so many births were either not recorded in Grey County? Perhaps, the records were lost.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Who is Country Music Historian Robert Ray Gardiner Junior?

Canada Gen Web has a Cemetery Project in which volunteers take photographs of gravestones at cemeteries throughout the provinces and territories. Luke Stoutenburg and his wife, Elizabeth Case, settled in Upper Canada in the early 1800s. Upper Canada, also later called Canada West, is today's Province of Ontario. Their son and my ancestor settled in Grey County, Ontario.

I had some idea that many of my family members were buried in the Thornbury-Clarksburg Union Cemetery. My assumption was clearly true because as I viewed the gravestone images at this website, I found photos of the gravestones of many members of the Peter Stoutenburg and Caroline Ashton family and their descendants.

One photo intrigued me. It is the photo of the gravestone of Robert Ray Gardiner, Jr. His father is Robert Ray Gardiner who was born in 1913. His mother is Wilda Olive Simmons who was born in 1914. The only date on the Robert Junior's gravestone is June 24, 1935. This could be construed as the date on which Robert Junior died.

Based on the dates when each of his parents were born, it would seem that Robert Junior died as an infant. However, the other text on the gravestone implies that date on the gravestone is not the date of his death. It appears to be the date of his birth.

The text on the gravestone reads:

Robert Ray
June 24, 1935
County Music Historian
Keep it country
Loving son of Ray & Wilda
Praise the Lord
I saw the light

It's unlikely that a son who died in infancy was a country music historian. I tried to find out more about this person on Google but did find any additional information.

Maybe I'll find something later.