18 April 2009

The Saga of Emmaline

The saga of Emma is truly one of frustration and fascination. My attempts to discover what happened to Emma after the death of Emma's husband, J.G. Waddell dies in Nashville, Emma just disappears. I'll write more about Emma's family in a future post for now lets look at Emma.

Emma first becomes part of my data base when her daughter, Mary Etta (Marietta) marries Joseph Ansley in Jackson County, Georgia 17 NOV 1875. It tells me nothing more about her, just states that Emmaline Waddell is the mother and that J.G. Waddell is the father. It is unknown to me if Waddell is actually her maiden name or if that is just her married name.

After J.G. Waddel dies in Nashville in 1864 (a whole saga of its own), Emma just disappears. After much looking I found a marriage record in Jackson County, Georgia to wit:

Waddle, Emeline & Brown, J.W. 15 SEP 1876 (pg. 522)

Is this my Emeline, mother of Marietta remarrying?

This marriage record discovery encouraged me to seek further information. The 1880 Federal census (ED 8, pg. 25) has John W. Brown & his wife, Emeline living in Goshen, Elbert County, Georgia. Living in the household with them is 7 year old Ira W. Brown. Is Ira the son of John W. & a first wife or is he is the son of John W. & Emeline?

Cemetery records of Elbert County, Georgia (975.801 EL16CE) led me to the following:

Rehoboth Baptist Church Cemetery, Elbert County, Georgia, Pgs. 435 & 436 -
John W. Brown 1846 - 04 MAR 1936, Emeline Brown, wife of J.W. Brown 1840 - 23 FEB 1925.

I note that the birth date shown for Emeline is a bit off from what I have found in other locations for her, but I am not surprised. She was marrying a younger man, no doubt she adjusted her age to work with his. Her daughter Mary Etta was very good at adjusting her age as well. In fact I think many women did this.

Once the cemetery records gave me a full date of death for Emeline Brown, I went to the Georgia death records on line and searched for her death certificate, hoping it would give me the information I wanted.

Death certificate #4048, Emeline Brown, female, white, married, wife of J.W. Brown. Age 86 years, housekeeper. Born in Elbert County, Georgia. Parents names are for the husband not for Emeline, death certificate does state that she died Feb. 23, 1925 of Pneumonia & that she had been ill for 13 days. Shows burial In Rehoboth Cemetery, Undertaker Burden Furniture Company. (Gotta love that eh?)

Disappointment set in, I was hoping that HER parents names would be there, instead I have the parents of John W. Brown - Adam Brown (1800-1868) and his wife, Nancy Harbin Brown (1799-1870). Not exactly what I was searching for, but will take nontheless.

While pondering all this I decided I would use the child, Ira W. to try & solve my puzzle. A bit of digging on Ancestry.com's Family Tree boards and I came up with a match! The match had no parents but everything else matched. And most of important it had a death date of 16 JUNE 1942 in Elbert County, Georgia. So off to the Georgia death index I went. To no avail, Ira W. was not listed. After thinking I recalled Ira W. was living in Anderson County, South Carolina in 1930, so perhaps he had died there. Checking the death index for South Carolina I came up with Ira W. Brown who died 16 JUN 1942 in Anderson County, South Carolina!!!!

South Carolina Vol. 17, Certificate #7275 for Ira W. Brown will hopefully help resolve my questions on the identity of Mrs. Emeline Brown.

Saturday, 27 Dec 2008 the death certificate of Ira W. Brown arrives from South Carolina. As I feared the death certificate indicates only that Ira's parents are John W. Brown & his wife, Emma Brown, both of whom were born in Georgia. No further information on the parents of Ira W. Brown is noted.

One evening I decided to do some surfing on Find A Grave for Emeline and see if possibly her grave is there. After a few minutes I find a listing for John & Emaline. I write to the contact on the page. He replies a few days later. He states that he believes that the Emaline Brown married to THIS John Brown is actually an Emeline Brown, a cousin of his & not Emaline Waddell. He offers no documentation to back his claim.

So I can't really state for positive that Emeline Waddell who married John W. Brown IS beyond a shadow of a doubt Emeline who married J.G. Waddell. However, all indications are that this is indeed her. I am going to add this marriage to my data base notes for Emaline & hope that all my evidence supporting my claim on this addition will be carefully considered by anyone who chooses to access my files in the future.

Stay tuned for more on the saga of the Waddell's and my attempts to research this very evasive family.

In the meantime - how would you have handled this? Do you have any other idea's on how to resolve this? I'd love to hear from you.


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