Unexpected Finds

Being a family historian/genealogist, you are able to record many wonderful things that have happened to your family. On the flipside, you also find out things that you might  find unsettling at best.

One of those things is the death of a child and especially how that child dies. In the past, I have spoken about the loss of a child.

Recently , I found out about the circumstances of the death of little Dorothy Ellen McCormack. Dorothy was the first daughter of Henry Davis and Dorothy Ellen (Wade) McCormack.

Tragic is about the best way I could explain it. This isn’t her death certificate, but a Coroner’s Register.


As you can read in the “History of Case” section, her death was rapid and very unexpected. In the space of less than 8 hours, little Dorothy went from perfectly healthy little girl to being dead. I can only imagine that her parents were nothing short of distraught and a total mess.

In my mother’s family, her brother died around same time period of polio. His death was never spoken of. I’m sure the same happened with Dorothy’s parents.

I can only guess the situation was pretty much the same with Minnie (McCormack) Barnes and her husband, Charles when their son, Charles (H.) Barnes died. Minnie or Maria (her given name) was the second youngest child and daughter of Michael and Catherine (Payne) McCormack.


Charles H. Barnes [2]

As you hopefully read in the “Medical Certificate of Cause of Death” section, the attending physician was there for almost 2 days. In that time or perhaps a short time before that, little Charles went from being a healthy infant to dying. As with Dorothy’s parents above, Charles’s parents of Minnie (McCormack) and Charles Barnes were probably were a total mess. In this case, there is some added distress to the situation. The attending physician was Minnie’s brother-in-law, Leon R. Ingleright. He was married to Minnie’s younger sister, Katherine Fidelia (McCormack) Ingleright.

I don’t think that I need to say it, but the tragedy here is that these two toddlers died way before they should have. The two deaths devastated two families for long time.

Thanks for stopping by and I hope you learned something!

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  1. “California, San Francisco County Records, 1824-1997,” database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-1942-22123-19280-86?cc=1402856 : 16 May 2016), Coroner’s Records > Coroner’s register, Mar, 1943 > image 173 of 683; San Francisco Public Library.

  2. Otter Lake, Lapeer County, Michigan Department of State – Division of Vital Statistics, 407 (Stamped), 5 Oct 1900, Charles H. Barnes, http://cdm16317.contentdm.oclc.org/cdm/singleitem/collection/p129401coll7/id/782204/rec/8.

September Dates for the McCormack clan

Here are the important dates in September for the McCormack clan. Remembering these people and what they did and what happened to them is very important.

1 Sep 1824 – Michael McCormack was born. I am not sure where in Ireland Michael was born although I suspect that he was born somewhere in County Kilkenny.
2 Sep 1995 – Lois Elizabeth VanMeter died. Lois was the second wife of James Archer McCormack.
2 Sep 1895 – Lura Grace Roys died. Lura was the first wife of my great-grandfather, William E. McCormack.
4 Sep 1923 – Jewel Beatrice Hassell was born in Jefferson, Texas. She was married to Robert Michael McCormack.
7 Sep 1871 – Charles Eli Barnes was born in Algonac, Michigan. He would become a ship captain on the Great Lakes. He would also marry Maria “Minnie” McCormack.
8 Sep 1896 – Lucille May McCormack was born in AuSable, Iosco County, Michigan. She was the daughter of Henry Thomas and Minnie (Van Wormer) McCormack.
9 Sep 1901 – Charles Arthur Barnes was born. He was the second son of Charles E. and Maria “Minnie” (McCormack) Barnes.
14 Sep 1920 – Henry Thomas McCormack married Margaret Iseman Naugle. It was the second marriage for both Henry and Margaret.
14 Sep 1900 – Dudley B. Palmer was born in Big Creek Twp., located in Oscoda County, Michigan. He would marry Lura Maude McCormack, the daughter of Edward James and Elizabeth Jane (Rohr) McCormack.
15 Sep 1937 – Richard Curtis Ford was born in Detroit, Michigan. He was the son of Aubrey B. and Alta Lyleth (McCormack) Ford. He was a twin, the other being my father.
16 Sep 1900 – Charles Harold Barnes died. He was the first born son of Charles E. and Maria “Minnie” (McCormack) Barnes.
16 Sep 2006 – Paul Lloyd Bird died in Earleton, Florida. He rose to be a Commander in the U.S. Navy. He was the grandson of Henry Thomas McCormack.
18 Sep 2007 – Robert Michael McCormack died in Laurel, Mississippi. He was one of six grandsons of John Michael and Gertrude (Peacock) McCormack. He flew a P-51D Mustang at the end of WWII and during the Korean War.
21 Sep 1895 – Roy D. Ellingham was born somewhere in Illinois. He was the husband of Lura Grace Coon, the granddaughter of William E. and Lura Grace (Roys) McCormack.
23 Sep 1928 – Ethel Rebecca McCormack was born in Reno, Nevada. She was one of four granddaughters of John Michael and Gertrude (Peacock) McCormack. She also had a very special smile.
24 Sep 2007 – Leon Ray Ingleright III died in Cassopolis, Michigan. He was the grandson of Katherine Fidelia (McCormack) Ingleright.
25 Sep 2012 – Richard Curtis Ford died in Port Angeles, Washington. He worked in the timber industry all his life in the Olympic Peninsula of Washington state.
26 Sep 1940 – Dorothy Ellen McCormack was born in Reno, Nevada. Her parents were Henry Davis and Dorothy Ellen (Wade) McCormack.
26 Sep 1853 – Michael McCormack married Catherine Payne in Kilkenny, Ireland. They were married at St. Marys church in Kilkenny. One of the witnesses is a Margaret Payne. It is possible that she was related to Catherine somehow. The exact relationship is not known at this time.
30 Sep 1870 – Leon Ray Ingleright was born in Berrien Springs, Michigan. He was married to Katherine Fidelia McCormack, the youngest daughter and child of Michael and Catherine (Payne) McCormack. He was a doctor and as an interesting sidetone, he was attending/signing physician for the unfortunate death of Charles H. Barnes, the first born son of Maria “Minnie” (McCormack) Barnes, the older sister of his wife. He was also the first of four Leon Ray Inglerights in his family.

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I would like to remind everyone that there is a lot more to the people listed here. If you have anything you would like to add about any of these people, please feel free to contact me. I also would like to thank you for stopping by and I hope you learned something.

Thanks for stopping by and I hope you learned something!

P.S. If you see anything that needs correcting, please let me know! Thanks again!

Amanuensis Monday – In her own words

A cousin started a discussion on FB about family members are more than just when they were born, married and died. To which I couldn’t agree more. If a family historian/genealogist just concentrates on dates and that sort of thing, in my opinion, they are missing out on a lot more to that person’s life.

In the words of my great-grand Aunt Gertrude P. McCormack;

Nevada McCormacks on the social page

John Michael & Family’s trip east [1]

I wonder if she ever tried any Milwaukee beer?

Thanks for stopping by and I hope you learned something!


  1. “Short Locals (J. M. McCormack & family’s trip east)”, Reno (Nevada) Evening Gazette, 5 Oct 1907 (Saturday), p. 9, col. 1; digital images, NewspaperArchive.com (http://www.newspaperarchive.com : accessed 26 Jun 2016), Newspaper Collection


Today, I would like to welcome as a guest blogger, my second cousin once removed, Patricia. Her father was HP McCormack and her grandfather was John Michael McCormack.

John Michael and HP

John Michael McCormack and son HP

Being the youngest of ten children I was not always aware of the goings-on of the older siblings, but one of my fondest memories was in 1945, four of my brothers returned home from WWII. My mother fixed a feast and what jubilant celebration it was. Thankfully my father, HP McCormack took moving pictures of the event which I still have and cherish, showing loving hugs to my mother and father, grandmother, aunt, the teasing between brothers, what fun it was.

Secondly, the summers spent at our cabin at King’s Beach on the North Shore of Lake Tahoe, California. It was a real log cabin built in 1932 from the pine trees cut down by my father, HP McCormack and older brothers. The older ones got to sleep in tents but younger ones in the cabin. In the mornings we would wake to the scrumptious smells of Mom’s pancakes cooking. Hurriedly we’d put on our bathing suits, gobbling down the pancakes, grabbing our towels and dashing down to the beach with our dog, Snooper, right behind us. Ack, the clear blue sparkling water was icy cold! Snooper was usually the first in and out, saunter over to us and shake that cold water all over our hot sun drenched bodies. We acquired terrible sunburns that would crack open, Mom would gently pat vinegar on the open cracked skin, ah, and the pain of it all, but soon we were as tan as could be. In the evenings we would sit around the beautiful rock fireplace, read, play games, pop popcorn and jump every time a pine cone would pop in the flames. Or, we would go to the movies, walking along the boardwalk whiffs of vanilla floating through the night air from the ice cream store.

The third fondest memory was our Christmas celebrations. Mom’s delicious turkey feasts, my father’s decorations, and family togethers. The younger ones would pile into a brother’s car, drive around town delighting in the beautiful decorations anxiously anticipating the excitement of Santa’s arrival. Upon arriving home, we would warn my brother not to honk the horn. His elbow always slipped causing a resounding loud honk. This was to warn the other brothers in the house to start ringing “Santa’s bell”. Brothers would ring the bell, throw it to the next one in another room, and we little ones would run through the house following the jingle of the bell in hopes to see Santa but never did.

I would like to thank my cousin Pat for sharing the memories that she did. If you have someone like Pat in your family, ask them about any memories that they would like to share.

Thanks for stopping by and I hope you learned something today!

“Family Reunions”

A few  weekends ago for me, was a time for family reunions. On Saturday, it was my mother’s side of the family, “Where are the Waldos?” Then on Monday, it was a meeting that I have been looking forward to since this cousin left a comment on one of my posts. I got to meet the granddaughter and great-granddaughter of Elizabeth J. McCormack, the widow of Edward J. McCormack (son of Michael and Catherine McCormack).

Linda and her mom

Elizabeth (Betty) Palmer Knauf and Linda Jagiello

You got to know Elizabeth or “Betty” and her sister in a couple of my posts, “The Passing of a McCormack legend!” and “Celebrating Women’s History Month – Elizabeth J. (Rohr) Dimmick McCormack.”

I would like to thank Linda for making contact with me by leaving a comment on a post several months ago. One thing that her mother, “Betty” told me that was growing up in Mio, it was her family, two aunts and two uncles and nobody else. She didn’t know that there was any other McCormacks around. Anywhere! Well, I took care of that “problem!” I told them all that I could about the McCormack family. Like how Michael and Catherine left Ireland and their travels in the United States ending up in Otter Lake. I also told them about the West Coast McCormacks. Like how John Michael McCormack was a stonemason, supposedly worked on the Brooklyn Bridge and did the same in Reno, Nevada and also how he ran a motel/hotel also in Reno. I also mentioned that Miss Betty’s grandmother (Elizabeth J. McCormack) wasn’t the only McCormack that operated a general store in Michigan. The three McCormacks that ran general stores in Michigan were Henry McCormack in Ithaca, my great-grandfather William in Otter Lake and then her grandmother, Elizabeth in Mio.

It was really great to enlighten someone about the rich family history that they previously didn’t know much about her family. I would like to “welcome” Miss Betty and her daughter to the McCormack family, but they were already a part of the family they just didn’t know much about the rest of us!

A special thank you to Miss Betty for welcoming me into her house and allowing me to do one of my favorite things that is to talk about the McCormack family. Also another special thank you to her daughter, Linda for making that first step of contacting me and then maintaining contact since then. I have enjoyed talking to her and working with her to help her mother learn about the McCormack family.

Thanks for stopping by and I hope you learned something!

August Dates for the McCormack clan

Here are the important dates in August for the McCormack clan. Remembering these people and what they did and what happened to them is very important.

1 Aug 1914 – Henry Peacock McCormack was married. His bride was Ethel Davis. They were married in Sacramento, California and would have ten children. Henry was the son of John Michael and Gertrude (Peacock) McCormack.
9 Aug 1913 – Catherine (Payne) McCormack died.
11 Aug 1999 – Arthur Willard Farrell died. He was married to Ruth Eleanor McCormack, the youngest daughter of William E. and Lavina Jane (Hemingway) McCormack. Arthur was an ad executive for the Detroit News.
11 Aug 1923 – Phyllis Louise Trevellyan was born.She was born in Chicago, Illinois. She was married to Robert Orrin Addy, the step-grandson of Smith and Delilah Elizabeth (McCormack) Addy.
13 Aug 2005 – Adly Rizk died. He was married to Pamela Joy McCormack, the second daughter of James Archer and Jimmie D. (Keen) McCormack, Sr.
15 Aug 2000 – Depsy Ann (Crain) McCormack died. She was the daughter-in-law of Henry Davis McCormack.
16 Aug 2007 – Nella Mae McCormack died. Her parents were Henry Peacock and Ethel (Davis) McCormack.
22 Aug 1998 – Gerald “Mac” Milton McCormack died. His parents were Henry Peacock and Ethel (Davis) McCormack. He was an expert in two engineering disciplines, Mechanical and Structural.
22 Aug 1918 – Alfred Rinehart Coon died. Alfred was married to Grace Ellen McCormack, the only child of William E. McCormack and Sara Grace Roys. He was a doctor.
22 Aug 1926 – Leon Ray Ingleright, Jr. married Margaret W. Murphy. They were married in South Bend, Indiana. He was a pharmacist and operated his own pharmacy in Niles, Michigan. His parents were Leon Ray and Katherine Fidelia (McCormack) Ingleright.
23 Aug 1888 – Lura Vae Addy was born. She was born in Albert Township, Michigan. Her parents were Smith and Delilah (McCormack) Addy.
26 Aug 1874 – LaVina Jane (Hemingway) McCormack was born. She was born in Marathon Township, Michigan. Her parents were Ernest Needham and Ann Toppan (Harris) Hemingway. She was my (paternal) great-grandmother.
26 Aug 1863 – Henry McCormack was born. He was born in London, Ontario, Canada. He started out in business in Ypsilanti, Michigan with E. M. Comstock and then moved to Ithaca, Michigan. He was the son of Michael and Catherine (Payne) McCormack.
29 Aug 1894 – Frances M. Foster was born. She was married to Robert Henry Addy, the son of Delilah McCormack and Smith Addy.

I would like to remind everyone that there is a lot more to the people listed here. If you have anything you would like to add about any of these people, please feel free to contact me. I also would like to thank you for stopping by and I hope you learned something.