Happy 218th Birthday, Grandfather Lee!ūüéą ūüéā

On 5 December 1800, my three times great grandfather, Horatio Lee, was born in Guilford, Connecticut, to William and Mary Summers Lee.¬† The family migrated West from Connecticut, stopping in New York, and while in West Bloomfield, Ontario County, New York, Horatio married Hannah Munn, the daughter of Noah Munn, Jr. and Mercy Simons, on 5 April 1825.¬† ¬†The family then removed to Oakland County, Michigan, where Horatio and Hannah settled in Section 24 in Farmington Township (the same section of Farmington Township where Horatio’s 4 times great granddaughter and her family have lived for the past 9 years).¬† Horatio and Hannah were the parents of: Caroline (1824), Clarissa (1826), Marietta (1828), George H. (1830), Charles Norton [my great great grandfather] (1833), Maria M. (1835), Emily J. (1838), Volney (1838), Mary C. (1842), Albert Lewis (1845), Thomas F (1847), and Avis (1851)!¬† ¬†Yes, and even dozen and only one set of twins.

Horatio and Hannah are buried in the Southfield Cemetery, Southfield, Michigan.


Posted in Genealogy, Grave Markers, LEE | Leave a comment

It is # 222 for 4 times Great Grandparents Munn!

222 years ago on 26 November 1796, in Gill, Massachusetts, Noah Munn, Jr. and Mercy Simons were wed.  Noah was born on 10 May 1772 in Northfield, Massachusetts to Noah Munn, Sr. and Desire Hitchcock.  He died 13 May 1821 near Riga, New York.  Mercy was born in Bolton, Connecticut, in 1771 to Jonathan Simons and Thankful Isham.   Noah and Mercy were the parents of 11: Joseph (1797), Moses (1798), Miranda (1801), Jonathan (1803), Harriet L. (1805), Hannah (1807), Clarissa (1809), Moses (1811), Sarah S. (1813), Lucinda (1815), and Julius Steel (1819).   Their daughter, Hannah, my 3 times great grandmother, married Horatio Lee in New York and then became one of the early settlers of Oakland County, Michigan.  It is through Mercy Simons to her mother,  Thankful Isham, to her mother Rebecca Fuller, to her father Samuel Fuller, to his father Barnabas Fuller, to his father Samuel Fuller, to his father Samuel Fuller., to Edward Fuller that I have been able to trace my Mayflower Descendant line.

Posted in Genealogy, LEE, Mayflower | Leave a comment

Frohes Jubil√§um Alexander Gaertner und Christina Regina Bauer (24 November 1813)

Today marks the 205th wedding anniversary of my three times great grandparents, Alexander Gaertner and Christina Regina who were married at the Evangelisch in Klein Ingersheim, W√ľrttemburg.¬† ¬†Grandfather Alexander and Grandmother Regina were the parents of 12 children: Johann David (1815), Christina Regina (1816), Maria Magdalena (1818), Johann Frederich (1819), Stillborn Daughter (1821), Alexander (1822), Johann Michael (1824), Stillborn daughter (1825), Johanna Regina (1827), Stillborn son (1830), Christina Regina (1831), and finally Wilhelm Gotthardt (1833).¬† ¬†Wilhelm was my immigrant ancestor who changed his name to William G Gardner after his arrival in the United States in 1854.

I am quite fortunate that the Church of Jesus Christ of the Latter Day Saints [www.familysearch.org] had microfilmed the local Protestant church (Evangelisch) records for this town that has now been swallowed up by Stuttgart which allowed me to track this  and  generations prior.  I was able to track baptisms, marriages, and deaths.

Posted in Gaertner / Gardner, Genealogy | Leave a comment

Happy Anniversary 3 Times Great Grandparents!

On 20 November 1828, 190 years ago, in Bloomfield, Oakland County, Michigan, Miss Almira Botsford married Mr. Morris Jenks.  Almira was born 27 June 1807 in Salisbury, Connecticut to Simeon Botsford and Esther Clark.  Morris was born on 7 October 1801 in Berkshire, New York to Laban Jenks and Prudence White.   Both migrated to Oakland County in the early 1820s with their families.  Morris and Almira produced four children:  Leman Case Jenks (1830), Esther Jenks (1832) [my 2 times great grandmother], Oliver Torry Jenks (1835), and Minerva B. Jenks (1838).

Morris and Almira built the home on Berg Road in Southfield in the early 1850s that would eventually be called Deer Lick Farm Рbut that is another story.  Morris died 13 February 1878 and is buried in the Southfield Cemetery.  Almira died five years later, 6 March 1883.  Unfortuately, I have not found definite proof of where GGG Grandmother was laid to rest.  The records of the Southfield Cemetery do not indicate she as interred next to GGG Grandfather.  The search continues.

Posted in Botsford, Genealogy, Jenks | Leave a comment

106 Year Old Mistake, Aunt Essie!

106 years ago, 19 November 1912, my grandmother’s sister, Essie, married Louis Kincaid Postle in Columbus, Franklin County, Ohio.¬† Aunt Essie was 21, Louis was 25.¬† The marriage was not a good one and would end in divorce.¬† In the 1920 census, the couple appeared to be living with Louis’ mother and siblings, but by the time the 1920 Columbus City Directory went to print, Aunt Essie was back living with Great Grandmother Koontz.

The only photograph I have of Essie and Louis together was taken on the eve of my grandparents’ wedding in April of 1918:


That is Great Grandmother Koontz between Louis and Essie.

I knew that Essie and Louis were divorced, but never know when or why.¬† ¬†We were always quite glad that she married the second time to Harold Spuhler who was one of our favorite uncles who visited my grandparents long after Aunt Essie passed away in 1953.¬† ¬†I did finally write to the Clerk of the Court in Franklin County, Ohio asking for a copy of the decree for Aunt Essie’s divorce.¬† They were quite helpful and supplied the decree and the supporting docuementation – the divorce was granted on 13 October 1922, with the grounds of gross neglect of duty [possibly due to the fact that he was living in Indiana and she was in Ohio]. Filed by Essie 4/28/1922. Attorney fees: $15.00, Court Costs $12.00 – assessed to Louis Postle. Essie Koontz name restored.¬† ¬†She and Uncle Harold were married 30 April 1923.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Happy Birthday, Great Grand Uncle George!

It was 149 years ago, 11 November 1869, that George W. Churches was born in Southfield, Oakland County, Michigan to Thomas and Harriet Roper Churches.¬† George became part of the family when he married, Ora Lee on 2 September 1896 in Pontiac, Oakland County, Michigan.¬† Aunt Ora was Great Grandmother Effie Lee Weaver’s sister.¬† Uncle George and Aunt Ora had three daughters: Pearl Geneva (1899), Erma Lorene (1906) and Ella Madelene (1913).¬† All except Pearl seesawed the use of their given and middle names in documents.¬† Uncle George and Aunt Ora would have been fairly non-distinct except for this one article in the¬†Detroit Free Press¬†on Thursday, 16 October 1913:¬† “Redford Builder Still Missing¬†Belief Strengthened that George Churches Met With Foul Play. ¬†

Belief that George Churches, builder, 44 years old, has met with foul play, was given stronger credence Wednesday by his wife and family in Redford as the day passed without a word of the missing man.

Churches left Redford at 5 o’clock Saturday morning carrying between $1,200 and $1,500 [this is the equivalent of a bit over $30,000 in 2018 dollars] which he intended to bank in Detroit.¬† Before leaving he told his wife he would be back during the afternoon. Thus far nothing has been heard of him.¬† Members of the sheriff’s force have failed to learn even that he had arrived in Detroit.

Mrs. Churches [Aunt Ora] does not believe that his stay from home is voluntary.¬† There are three young daughters, Pearl, 14 years old, Loraine, 7 years old, and a babe [Ella Madelene] 4 months old.”

I have not been able to find a follow up article telling where Uncle George was or what he was doing.  I do know that he did return.   Aunt Ora and he celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary with a big family party in 1941 (also covered by the DFP).  Uncle George lived until 29 December 1960 and is buried next to Aunt Ora at Grand Lawn Cemetery in Detroit.

Posted in LEE, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Happy Birthday, Great Great Grandmother Lee!ūüéā


Esther Jenks Lee

Esther Jenks was born in Southfield, Oakland County, Michigan on 24 October 1832, to Morris and Almira Botsford Jenks.¬† ¬† From The Reunion Papers of the Jenks Family by Eva Seymour Jenks: “Esther Jenks, grew in the homestead in the woods to girlhood, of handsome face and figure, sweet disposition, and a pronounced character marked by industry, thrift, and uprightness. At about the age of 17, she went to Detroit and, staying with her Aunt Mary Botsford Cook, she attended the old Cass School for two or three terms. At the close of her school days – often interrupted by the general community conditions common to pioneers, she emerged a young woman of rare intelligence.”

Great Great Grandmother Lee married Charles Norton Lee on 25 December 1855 in her father’s home in Southfield.¬† It is this same home which she and GG Grandfather Lee would later own and is the home in which she is standing in the above photograph taken in 1916.¬† The children of Charles and Esther included Emmer Estelle (1856), Effie Clarissa (1859) [my great grandmother], Lewellyn (1862), Hannah Almira (1864), Marietta (1870), and Ora (1874).

On the occasion of Great Great Grandmother Lee’s 85th birthday, her children gave her a new black silk dress as a her gift and all posed in front of the Jenks’ Place [aka Deer Lick Farm]:


Esther Jenks Lee 85th Birthday

Esther Jenks Lee passed away on 10 February 1918 and was laid to rest next to her beloved Charlie in the Southfield Cemetery.

For those of you keeping track, yes, Great Great Grandfather Lee died yesterday, the day before Great Great Grandmother Lee’s birthday.¬† This is one of the earliest recordings of what has become a spooky family tradition.¬† ¬†My maternal grandmother died on my mother’s birthday.¬† My paternal grandmother died the day after my father’s birthday.¬† ¬†Needless to day we give birthdays a side glance in our family.


Posted in Genealogy, Jenks, LEE, Uncategorized | Leave a comment