Friday, December 4, 2020

Domelle Surname in the 1940 US Federal Census - Updated

I first took a look at the Domelle's in the 1940 census back in 2012, so it's due for an update based on new information I have.

It's not a common name and does have many spelling variations in the US, including:

  • Domelle
  • Domele
  • Dumelle

The rarity of the name has always led me to believe that any Domelle out there is likely sourced from the same line that originated in the Alsace-Lorraine region as "Tomule".

Today I looked in the 1940 US Federal census for any occurrence of a surname of Domelle, Domele or Dumelle, especially for those with a birthplace of Hungary, Indiana or Illinois since those are the main locations for the initial immigrant families.

Here is what I found:

1) There are 10 households of Domelles in the US in 1940 (6 Domelles, 3 Domeles and 1 Dumelle).  There could be 1 or 2 more but they are currently spelled in such a way that I couldn't nail them down.  I might figure them out later.  :-)

2) 5 of them are in the northwest corner of Indiana (4 in Newton County, 1 in Lake County).  

2a. William Domelle, his wife and adult son lived on a farm in Lincoln, Newton County, Indiana. William is brothers with 2b.  William is the 2nd cousin 1x removed of 3c.  William's sons are 2c and 4a, and his daughter is 3a.

2b. Nick Domelle (William's brother) and his wife lived on a farm in Lincoln, Newton County, Indiana.  They are listed on the next lines of the census form under 2a, his brother.  Nick is the 2nd cousin 1x removed of 3c.

2c. Pete Domelle (spelled incorrectly as Domella in the census record), his wife and baby daughter lived in Hammond, Lake County, Indiana.  He is the son of 2a and brother to 3a and 4a.

2d. John Domele and his wife lived on a farm in Lake Township, Newton County, Indiana.  John is 1st cousins with 2a and 2b.

2e. Tony Domele, his wife and 2 children lived on a farm in Lake Township, Newton County, Indiana and is listed just a few lines down on the census from his parents, 2d.  His deceased brother's widow and child are 3d.

3) 4 of them are in Chicago, Illinois (not far from the northwest corner of Indiana - also 2 of those were young Domelle ladies on their own in the big city).

3a. Mary Domelle (spelled incorrectly as Donnelly in the census record) lived as a lodger at 510 North Lavergne Ave, Chicago, Illinois.  She is the daughter of 2a and the sister of 4a.

3b. Betty Domelle lived as a lodger at 2940 W. 54th St, Chicago, Illinois.  She is the daughter of 2b.

3c. Peter Dumelle, his wife and 6 children lived at 3442 N. Halsted St, Chicago, Illinois.  Frank is the 2nd cousin of 2a and 2b.

3d. Clara Domele, widow of Martin Domele, and their son lived at 1616 Nelson St, Chicago, Illinois.  Martin is the son of 2d and brother to 2e.

4) 1 of them, my direct ancestor, wandered over to Tompkins County, New York (thank goodness since that's where he met my grandmother!).

4a. William Domelle, son of 2a above, and brother to 3a, lived as a hired man on a farm at Kline Road, Lansing, Tompkins County, New York.  He is the brother of 2c and 3a.

Below is a map showing the distribution.  Just one big cluster except for the 1 outlier over in NY.

Originally all the Domelles/Domeles were in Chicago, but the 2 brothers and their cousin moved just south to Indiana to farm. 

Saturday, December 28, 2019

Where the Mix Children are Buried

Yes, there are lots of Mix children in the world, but in this case I'm referring to the 10 children of William Homer MIX and Cornelia Elizabeth (AKINS) MIX of New York state.

I can't imagine 10 children running around, although there was enough of an age difference that the oldest, Floyd, was 22 years old when the youngest, Donald, was born.  I would think that once there's more than 4 adding any additional kids doesn't make a difference to the chaos :-D :-D :-D

They were all pretty healthy and all lived into adulthood and beyond.  The first one to die was the second eldest, Spencer, who died in 1971 at age 63.  The last to die was my grandmother, Ann, who died in 2010 at the grand age of 90; she was number 8 out of the 10.

Here is burial information for each of the siblings, they are listed in order of their birth:

1. Floyd William MIX
b. 25 Oct 1905
d. 03 Feb 1989, aged 83
Buried at Fountain's Memorial Park, 5635 W. Green Acres St., Homosassa Springs, Citrus County, FL, 34446

Photo from Find a Grave

2. Spencer Tilford MIX
b. 12 May 1908
d. 08 Dec 1971, aged 63
Buried at ????.  Death certificate does not list a place of burial or if cremation was done.  Place of death was the U.S. Public Health Service Hospital (now known as Richmond University Medical Center-Bayley Seton Hospital, though it is no longer a working hospital), Staten Island, New York City, NY.

3. Laurance Wilbur MIX
b. 29 Dec 1910
d. 09 Mar 1989, aged 78
Buried at Willow Glen Cemetery, Dryden, Tompkins County, NY

4. Daisy Mabel (MIX) DEMARC
b. 01 May 1913
d. 06 Jun 1994, aged 81
Buried at Kingdom Farm Cemetery (a.k.a. Resurrection Park Cemetery), On Bower Rd. off of Rt. 34, Lansing, Tompkins County, NY

5. Mazie (MIX) PATRICK
b. 01 May 1913
d. 22 Apr 2009, aged 95
Cremated remains buried at Willow Glen Cemetery, Dryden, Tompkins County, NY

Photo from Find a Grave

6. William Erwin MIX
b. 07 Apr 1915
d. 14 Mar 1985, aged 69
Buried at Grove Cemetery, 8825 Falls Rd., Trumansburg, Tompkins County, NY, 14886

Photo from Find a Grave

7. Leslie Homer MIX
b. 10 Aug 1918
d. 12 May 1991, aged 72
Buried at Christian Cemetery, Enfield, Tompkins County, NY

8. Anna G. (MIX) DOMELLE
b. 06 Mar 1920
d. 12 Nov 2010, aged 90
Cremated and ashes scattered.

9. John Francis MIX

b. 20 Mar 1926
d. 07 Dec 1981, aged 55
Buried at Hector Union Cemetery, 4359 NY-79, Burdett, Schuyler County, NY

10. Donald Thomas MIX
b. 01 Aug 1927
d. 25 Jul 2009, aged 81
Buried at Willow Glen Cemetery, Dryden, Tompkins County, NY

Photo from Find a Grave

Saturday, August 10, 2019

Collins Mix and the Tioga County Poor House - Part 3

Welcome to Part 3, sorry for the broken up posts but the story ended up being longer when you type it all out!  Plus you know summer is busy!!  I tend to do more research in the winter!

So back in Part 1 and Part 2, we were learning about Collins Mix, who died in the Tioga County NY Poor House.  My cousin and I found the actual Keeper's Book that named him, and in that book we found out some additional information about Collins - he wasn't put into the Poor House just the one time.  Unfortunately, it was many times.

Here's the listings for Collins that my cousin and I found in the Keeper's Book:

The first listing of Collins in the book was 21 June 1845:  Collins, age 67, brought in by a Joel Robinson (many people were), after a bit of looking on the magic internet, I found a Joel Robinson who was the "Superintendent of the Poor" for Candor, Tioga County in the book, "The New York State Register, for 1843".  It's pretty likely it's the same guy then.  There are typically 3 columns to check for each person: "Lunatic", "Idiot", and "Mute" and none of these columns were checked for Collins.  Sometimes there would be a column for "Foreigner" and/or "Colored".

Next up, 12 November 1845:

Third, 12 November 1846:  Collins, age 69

Fourth, 12 November 1847:  Collins, age 70

Fifth, 12 November 1848: Collins, age 71

Sixth, 12 November 1849:  Collins, age 72.  This is the first time they have a column for "Intemperate" and there's no mark in it for him.

Seventh, 12 November 1850:  Collins, age listed as 72 again.  This is the only time they have a mark for the "Intemperate" column for Collins out of 3 opportunities.

Eight and final listing, 12 November 1851; Collins is listed as 73 and he's listed as dying in January 1852.

So the last 6.5 years of his life were spent there at the Poor House.  It's sad, there's not much you can say looking this far back in the past; without any other types of records there's no way to know for sure the circumstances.

So it could be he was a lifelong alcoholic, or maybe it was some mental illness along with the alcohol or was something else entirely - chronic pain that he was medicating with alcohol but then he'd get mean - or maybe that one check for Intemperance was an error and it was some other reason he was there - we won't know for sure until time travel is invented.  But either way, he didn't want to live with his family or his family didn't want him to live with them and so he ended up either voluntarily or involuntarily living in the Poor House.

But, on a good note for us today, it's one more piece of the puzzle in place!  Hopefully it will lead to more!  It was a fun investigation for me and my cousin, we had a good time!!!

Sunday, July 28, 2019

Collins Mix and the Tioga County Poor House - Part 2

Welcome back to the saga of Collins Mix!  In the last post (Part 1), we ended with my trip to the Tioga County Historical Society in 2009.

So now, we fast forward to 2019.  I know I know, how did 10 years go by?  I don't know!  As far as I know I'm still 15 and forgetting my locker combination in my dreams.  Don't ask me what the hell is going on. :-D

AnyWAY, back to Collins and his family - we discovered him in the 1850 census in the Poor House in Owego, Tioga County, that he was listed as intemperate on the index card, and he died in 1852.

Sure would like to know how Leafe pronounced her name!! "Leaf?" "Leaf-ee?" "Leave?" Who knows?

He came up in conversation during a visit with my cousin Kimberly in New York.  We both do genealogy for the Mix side of our family and we decided to have a visit where we could review and verify our overlaps, etc.  During the visit we decided to take a trip over the the Tioga County Historical Society to see what might come up - maybe we'd find that Keeper's book and find out more about Collins!

The volunteer at the desk at the historical society was incredibly helpful and friendly, but was unable to locate the Tioga County Poorhouse Keeper's Book.  We looked at some microfilms of old newspapers in case we might find Collins mentioned, but no luck.  The volunteer (I'm sorry I don't have his name!!) even called another lady who wasn't there that day to ask if she knew anything about it.  Can you believe, she popped in on her day off and was rummaging around back in their storage area, but no luck.  Librarians and historians and volunteers are the BEST PEOPLE!

They suggested we head over to the local library just a few streets away because they had a mostly un-cataloged family history section filled with donations and maybe we would find something there.  So off we went to the library, with a quick stop for refreshments on the way.

We'd just made it through the door when the librarian behind the desk yelled over to us (yes! the librarian YELLED to two complete strangers): "OH, the historical society called!  They found your book!  They said to come back!"

OMG, how'd she know it was us?  Because she's a LIBRARIAN, THAT'S WHY!

Don't mess with librarians!

So we raced back to the historical society taking corners on 2 wheels and slid sideways into a spot and ran inside and........


Oddly enough it looks like 3 year old me already saw it and "wrote" on it...
Never was there a more beautiful sight than this little book on the table!

The volunteer historian was so nervous about letting us handle it but we swore on our ancestors we would gently hold it open by hand and just take photos.

You see - it survived a massive flood there a few years back - the whole basement of the Historical Society was under several feet of water and guess where all their records are stored?  Yep, of course!  Apparently they had a company come up from Texas I think it was, they do freeze-drying of records to try and make them usable again after floods.  I can't imagine trying to pick up the pieces after that!  But our book made it - so we quickly looked under the date I'd seen on the index card a decade ago and sure enough, there he is, Collins Mix, admitted 12 Nov. 1850.  But no one is listed under having dropped him there, no info under "Discharged".  POO!

"Colins Mix", male, born NY, 72 yrs old, Intemperate, resides Owego County

But finally after a decade, I've seen the source record, I know the index card was correct.  Awesome feeling!

So my cousin and I bask in the awesomeness for a moment and then she's like, so, let's look and see if he's anywhere else in this book!

Coming soon!  Part 3!!

Saturday, July 6, 2019

Collins Mix and the Tioga County Poor House - Part 1

So I've got this problematic 4th Great Grandfather, Collins Mix.  He's problematic because when I first applied to the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR), my application had to be rejected as the father/son relationship between Collins Mix and his son Jonathan Collins Mix is assumed but not proven.  The slightly unusual first name of "Collins" comes from his mother's maiden name.

I know that somewhere, there's got to be a small item in a local newspaper, or a bible page, but so far, no one has found them.  So, when I can, I come back to him to see what I can find.

Collins was born on 20 January 1777 in Wallingford, CT, to Thomas Mix and Lois Collins.  I know of one brother to Collins, an older brother named Joel.

By the time Collins was in his early 20s in the 1800 US Census, he was in Clarendon, Rutland County, VT, married to Leafe Ide.

By the 1810 Census, the family was south of there, in Northumberland, Saratoga County, NY.  Finally, by the 1820 and 1830 censuses they stopped their wandering in Candor, Tioga County, NY.  I have yet to locate him in the 1840 census.

From what I can tell so far, they had 4 living children, Olive, Jonathan Collins, Squire Ide, and Sevinah.  Interesting names to be sure, and genealogists LOVE interesting and unusual names!!!!  As a little girl I was frustrated with my own name, always having to pronounce it and spell it for people, but boy did my perspective change once I started researching genealogy!  Thomas Mix, son of Thomas Mix, son of Thomas Mix, son of Thomas Mix, and every female named Elizabeth or Sarah, UGH!!!!!  LOL, but I digress....

Now, on to the 1850 census, the first that really gives us some good details on our people.  I found Collins Mix, but he was not only alone, he was listed as a "pauper" in the Tioga County Poorhouse.

There's lots of reasons a person might end up in a "Poorhouse" in the 1800s - you could of course, be poor, but you might also have a disability like blindness or deafness, some kind of congenital disease, you might be an alcoholic, or have mental illness.  And despite the best intentions that might have gone into creating a poorhouse, it was a place best avoided if  possible.  So how is Collins there, alone?  He had adult kids, he had a wife.  Leafe shows up in the 1865 New York State census, living with her daughter Sevinah and her family so she was alive - unfortunately, despite her lovely unusual name, she remains elusive - I have not yet been able to find her whereabouts in 1850.

But now, Jonathan Collins Mix is findable in 1850 - I found him living in the same county as his dad Collins, in the Candor NY 1850 census.  He's listed with his wife and 4 kids.  So why isn't Collins living with his son if he's so close by?

So that's a clue that perhaps there was something going on with Collins where either he didn't want to be with family members or they weren't in a position to take him in.  Could have been mental illness, alcoholism, but all I know for sure is he's listed as a "pauper" in the 1850 census.  Could be he was just a jerk!  Or maybe his family were the jerks!  We'll never know for sure.

So armed with this information, back in 2009 I traveled up to the Tioga County Historical Society.  It's on a serene tree-lined street right up on the river in Owego NY.

There I found an index card in their files during a search for Collins Mix. The index card said the following information was from the "Tioga County Keeper's Book":

     Mix, Collins
     D. 17 Jan. 1852 ae 73 at the Poor House
     12 Nov. 1850 admitted ae 72, intemperate
     Residence Tioga County

AHA!  So there we go - "intemperate".  In this case, the word intemperate was often used to denote alcoholism.  So if that is truly what's going on, that would explain why his family, though nearby, didn't have Collins living with them.  Of course, he could have had a terrible temper......

Perhaps he was prone to rits of fealous jage
Anyhoo, with that information, I was then able to locate, on microfilm at the Historical Society, the following, which proved the death information on the index card:

     Mortality at the Poor House
     Names of persons who have died at the Poor House during the year 
     ending on the 1st Day of Dec. 1852 
     (Furnished by Col. Daniel Bacon, Keeper).
     Collins Mix, formerly of Candor, Jan 17th 1852, 73
     Average number of inmates, about 75
     Proportion of Deaths about as 1 to 5
     Of the whole number received, the proportion is as 1 - 17

This was from "The Owego Gazette", Number 21, 15 January 1853, page 2.

While there at the historical society in 2009, I asked about that Tioga County Keeper's Book mentioned on the index card, but was told at the time that they did not have it, though if I reached out to other historians in the area I might be able to locate it.

And so there for many years, was the end of my information about my 4th Great Grandfather, Collins Mix.

Up next, Part 2!!!!  No, I didn't prove the father-son relationship (I WISH!), but I did find out more cool stuff along with my cousin!