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Genealogical breakthrough

You may remember back in November I wrote about my great-grandfather Winslow, with two possible stories of how, where, and when he died (with slight additional variations) and my ever-thwarted attempts to find out what the real story was.

In mid-January, I managed to ensnare myself into a half-year subscription to Newspapers.com (via a one-week trial period that I kinda-sorta forgot to end). I had been poking around for him in Chicago, Detroit, and Port Huron newspapers there, striking out in general.

Yesterday, I did a really broad search for his last name, anywhere in Michigan, in the years 1890–1893. Lo and behold, results came up in a newspaper from a tiny town I had no expectation had ever had a newspaper. The first result was a paragraph that said he was bound for Chicago as a mate on the steam barge J.I. Case in April 1892. The second was a longer paragraph in June 1892, noting that he had passed away at home near Yale, Michigan, earlier in the week after three weeks of illness with typhoid fever.

I didn't know anyone could get giddy over typhoid fever, but I did. Well, ok, not exactly for that reason, of course. I was just really happy to have solved this mystery. I do not know where the case of typhoid fever was acquired; I'm not sure it matters, really. I just saved the two "clips" into my Ancestry.com page for Winslow, updated the death information, and smiled.

He left behind a wife, two sons, and a daughter; five months after his death, his third son was born. Curiously, none of them is mentioned in his death notice, just his father, the Civil War captain. The obit concludes "The family have the sympathy of all," which is a nice touch.

So... on to the next cold case.



( 3 comments — Leave a comment )
Feb. 3rd, 2017 11:19 pm (UTC)
Wow - well, despite the fact that you were trying to find a cause of death, that's actually really cool to be able to find that. I've often been tempted to try to look up my ancestors - I may have to remember that site. (Hope they weren't charging too much for your unexpected time there.)
Feb. 10th, 2017 12:28 am (UTC)
I think it's $74 for a six-month subscription. They have cheaper subscriptions, which might work out if you only need one newspaper, maybe. If you have a relationship with a library that has a Newspapers.com account, you'll be able to use it for free, I think. (In which case, you'd have to print things out instead of saving them, but that's easy.)

The free trial could've worked for me, but you know how they get you on free trials. :)
Feb. 16th, 2017 04:30 pm (UTC)
Yay that you found the obit with the information!

My brother may have found our Ojibwe/ Chippewa ancestor. She was much closer than thought generation wise. He was going through some notes from our maternal grandfather. All Grandpa would say was that she was descended from "fine American stock." Grandpa grew up in St. Louis, near Mt. Pleasant...and next door to the reservation there. Mt. Pleasant was also a terminus for one of the Underground Railroad routes. Jim also found out that the paternal part of that line came up through Ohio through an area where many freed men settled. Be interesting to see what's what.

He's taking a DNA test--we should be getting the results back soon.

Fran (Oakley is taking a nap)
( 3 comments — Leave a comment )

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