Amanuensis Monday – Affidavit of Decease

It has been a couple of weeks since I last posted and I didn’t start to post this piece but something else. Sorry for the delay.


Amanuensis: A person employed to write what another dictates or to copy what has been written by another. This topic was started by John Newmark of the TransylvanianDutch blog.

It has been almost two years since I made a post under the Amanuensis Monday moniker. This is the affidavit of decease for my great-grand uncle, Frank J. McCormack.

Here is my transcription;

AFFIDAVIT OF DECEASE

________________

STATE OF ILLINOIS

Kankakee County         } SS.

Cook

             Arthur A. McCormack,                                , being duly sworn, deposeth

and saith; That                           Frank J. McCormack                                    late of the

Town of                      Kankakee                          in the County of Kankakee and State

aforesaid, departed this life at       the City of Kankakee             , in said County, on

or about the          9th         , day of           December                               A.D. 1917      

and that   he    died leaving              no           last Will and Testament, to the best of

              his                knowledge and belief.

    Arthur A. McCormack     (signature)

 Subscribe and sworn to before me, this       24th     

day of       December       A. D. 1917

       Elmer A. Wilson         

    Notary Public,  in and

for Kankakee County Illinois

Here is the actual file;

Affidavit of Decease - Frank J. McCormack

Affidavit of Decease – Frank J. McCormack

For starters, it really doesn’t tell me anything new about any of the actors. What it does is it confirms several things that I do know, like Arthur’s middle initial “A” and Frank’s middle initial of “J”. Like their father, Michael McCormack, Arthur never used his full middle name and to the best of my knowledge, neither did Frank. By the way, Michael’s middle initial was “M” but he only used about three or four times. He never wrote down what his middle name was. But that is a subject for another post if I haven’t already done so.

I hope you learned something and thanks for stopping by!

Footnote;

  1. Kankakee County, Illinois, Frank J. McCormack probate file, Probate Court, Kankakee.

McCormack Family DNA Update!

I have great news! One of my research goals that I have since I started my research in the early 90’s has been to find out if the Michael McCormacks are truly Irish as most of my research has shown and as my gut tells me is true. Well, as I have found out other than my great-grandfather, William E. McCormack, neither one of his parents, Michael and Catherine, left a really great paper trail. My other option was a DNA test. Specifically, a Y-DNA test. For that, I needed a direct male descendant of Michael to take the test for me.  As I have said before in another blog post, I can’t take the test because my grandmother, God bless her, got in the way. Well, delaying the good news no longer, I have found a direct male descendant of Michael to take the test for me. Right now, I am not going to share his name. I want to thank this cousin for his cooperation! I have ordered a Y-DNA67 test for us. In about 2-3 months we should know some results.

Thanks for stopping by!

A marriage license

One of the interesting things about researching your family history is the documents that you find. One such document that I found, on Ancestry.com, is the marriage license for my late grand uncle Merle H. McCormack and Lois Murel Baker, his first wife.

Marriage License - Merle McCormack

Marriage License – Merle McCormack and Lois M. Baker [1]

It really doesn’t tell me anything new. It is just interesting to see. One of the interesting facts that you see on the license is the listing of the witnesses. I am not sure if the second witness, Alice Frankhouser, is a friend of my uncle Merle or his wife-to-be, Lois Baker. This marriage license also confirms the parents of both Merle and Lois.

I think someday I will print this document on the appropriate paper.

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

Footnote;

1. Ancestry.com. Michigan, Marriage Records, 1867-1952 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2015.

Happy Birthday, William E. McCormack!

I originally wrote this particular post last year.

*********************************************************

Today would have been William E. McCormack, my great-grandfather’s birthday. He was born on 9 July 1853 in Kilkenny, Ireland. He would have been 162 years old! His parents were Michael (M.) McCormack and Catherine (Payne) Steele. Shortly after his birth, he and his parents left Ireland via Liverpool, I believe, for the United States of America. For some unknown reason, they arrived in New Orleans, Louisiana.

William E. McCormack

William E. McCormack [1]

After a short stint in Kentucky and then in London, Ontario, Canada, William grew up in Ypsilanti, Michigan. When he was about 30 years old, he married Lura Grace Roys. Unfortunately, she died in 1895. They had one child, Grace Ellen McCormack. He then married my great-grandmother, Lavina Jane Hemingway in 1897.

Lavina Jane (Hemingway) McCormack

Lavina Jane (Hemingway) McCormack

They had three children, Merle, Alta (my grandmother) and Ruth.

Merle, Ruth and Alta

Merle, Ruth and Alta

I believe sometime in the 1880s, William built one of the finest house in the small village of Otter Lake, Michigan.

The William McCormack House in Otter Lake

The William McCormack House in Otter Lake

It still stands today but not in the magnificent shape that my great-grandfather initially built it. I am sure that I might be forgetting something since I am writing this at 4 am, but William was at times, a general/hardware store owner, a postmaster and probably many other things in Otter Lake.

William McCormack in front of his house in Otter Lake

William McCormack in front of his house in Otter Lake

The above photo is one of my favorite picture of William E. McCormack. Happy belated Birthday, great-grandfather!

Thanks for stopping by and I hope you learned something!

DNA News update!

This is amazing, I am posting on consecutive days!

Last night (Tuesday night), I got an e-mail telling me that my YDNA-67 test was complete and ready for a lookover. I have taken a real quick look at my results. I my say that I don’t have a clue on what it all means. Give me a few days or weeks to find out what this all means. I don’t know how this test will help me in my McCormack research.

Thanks for stooping by!

Happy (Belated) Wedding Anniversary!

Hello once again! Today, even though I am a day late, I want to mark the wedding anniversary of my paternal great-grandparents, William E. McCormack and Lavina Jane Hemingway! They were married on 7 Jul 1897[1] which would make yesterday their 118th wedding anniversary! Can you imagine that being married to the same person for 118 years? The information that I have says that they were married in Otter Lake, Michigan where both of them lived at the time. I wonder if they got married at one of the local churches? St. Johns perhaps?

Lavina Jane (Hemingway) McCormack

Lavina Jane (Hemingway) McCormack

William E. McCormack

William E. McCormack

Thank you for stopping by and I hope that you learned something interesting!

Footnote;

1. “Michigan, Marriages, 1868-1925,” index and images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/NQQQ-FVV : accessed 16 Sep 2012), Wm. E. Mccormack and Lavina Hemingway, 7 Jul 1897.

Where Oh Where did my McCormacks come from?

I must apologize for not posting anything for almost the past month. It has been not because I didn’t want to but that my schedule was pretty taken up with work.

About a month and half ago, I wrote the majority of the below post for an Irish online forum, Your Irish Heritage. I thought I would add to it here.

I imagine a few people remember the old nursery rhyme “Oh Where, oh Where Did My Little Dog Go?” I face a similar problem with “my” McCormacks. I have NO idea on where my McCormacks came from. Were they locals of County Kilkenny? Or were they from somewhere else?

Let me start with what I do know. My great-grandfather, William E. McCormack was born in Kilkenny, Co. Kilkenny on 9 Jul 1853[1]. His parents were Michael (M.) McCormack and Catherine Paine/Payne. They were also married in Kilkenny[2]. I don’t know if they were locals or stopped in Kilkenny. I have *NO* birth location or any other location for either Michael or Catherine.

I do have some family stories to go on about Catherine. My dad always told me that he thought the McCormacks came from County Cork. Another story that I heard from another cousin is that Michael and Catherine stopped in Kentucky, where their first daughter Delilia was born, to visit Catherine’s brother. Looking around, I did find a William Payne in Harrodsburg, Kentucky. Oddly enough, his wife’s name was also Delilia. To be exact, I found him for three consecutive censuses, the 1850 [3], the 1860 [4] and finally, the 1870 [5]. This William Payne “disappeared” from the Harrodsburg area after that. I did find another William (H.) Payne in the Chicago, IL area in the 1880 [6] and the 1900 [7] censuses. I believe that this William (H.) Payne died in 1904 [8].

After some more searching on Ancestry.com, I did find a naturalization record for a William Payne [9]. The birth year (1813) fits and so does the place of birth, Bandon, County Cork, Ireland. This is all great, but somehow I have to tie both (?) of the William Paynes I have to my great-great-grandmother, Catherine (Payne) McCormack. As I have already shown, there are several facts that support my theory that William and Catherine are brother and sister.

Since I have some documentation stating that Catherine is from Ireland, I looked on Roots Ireland for some supporting records. I did find one, a church baptism record for a Catherine Payne with a baptism date of 5 Aug 1823. That is almost a full year BEFORE the date of birth that I have for her. But that information was given on Catherine’s death certificate by her daughter, “Minnie”. So, I could have some wiggle room there. There is one more dissenting fact on that record from what I have in my records. On the baptism record, the father’s name is given as James Payne. That does not match with what I have of Robert Paine/Payne.

I have looked at Griffith’s Valuation and have found several Michael McCormacks, but I really haven’t pursued it because I don’t have a documented (or otherwise) location for Michael or Catherine prior to the summer of 1853. Also, while I can find the name, Michael McCormack, in the Griffiths Valuation I can NOT tie any of those people to my Michael. FYI, the Griffith’s Valuations for County Kilkenny, where I presumed Michael lived prior to his marriage, were published in 1849-50.

Speaking of Griffith’s Valuation, I noted on the marriage document for Michael and Catherine that one of the two witnesses was a Margaret Payne. I looked at various Irish websites that offer Griffith’s Valuation searches for a Margaret Payne in County Kilkenny. I found one.

What I will try to do in the future is to pursue the William Payne/Chicago lead. I will also try to find any more information on Margaret Payne, the witness to Michael and Catherine’s marriage. I could also try the ‘Valuation Revision Books’ located in Dublin.

Thanks for stopping by and I hoped you learned something!

Footnotes;

1.) Lapeer County, Michigan, Michigan Department of Health, Death Certificate, State File No. 3309 (Local File No. 2), 30 Apr 1943, William E. McCormack, Bureau of Records and Statistics, Lapeer.
2.) “Ireland Marriages, 1619-1898,” Michael McCormick, digital image, http://ifhf.rootsireland.ie/.
3.) 1850 United States Federal Census, Mercer County, Kentucky, population schedule, District #1, Pg. 47 (written) p. 245 (stamped), dwelling #506, family #506, William Payne, digital image, Ancestry.com, http://search.ancestry.com/, accessed 6 Jul 2015, citing Seventh Census of the United States, 1850; (National Archives Microfilm Publication M432, 1009 rolls); Records of the Bureau of the Census, Record Group 29; National Archives, Washington, D.C.
4.) 1860 United States Federal Census, Harrodsburg,Mercer County, Kentucky, population schedule, Pg. 27 (written) p. 711 (stamped), dwelling #191, family #191, William Payne, digital image, Ancestry.com, http://search.ancestry.com/, accessed 6 Jul 2015, citing Eighth Census of the United States, 1860; (National Archives Microfilm Publication M653, 1438 rolls); Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.
5.) 1870 United States Federal Census, Harrodsburg, Mercer County, Kentucky, population schedule, Pg. 28 (written), dwelling #192, family #217, William Payne, digital image, Ancestry.com, http://search.ancestry.com/, accessed 6 Jul 2015, citing Ninth Census of the United States, 1860; (National Archives Microfilm Publication M593, 1,761 rolls); Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.
6.) 1880 United States Federal Census, Chicago, Cook County, Illinois, population schedule, E.D. #90, Pg. 34 (written), p. 711 (stamped), house #138, dwelling #223, family #460, William Payne, digital image, Ancestry.com, http://search.ancestry.com/, accessed 6 Jul 2015, citing Tenth Census of the United States, 1880. (NARA microfilm publication T9, 1,454 rolls). Records of the Bureau of the Census, Record Group 29. National Archives, Washington, D.C.
7.) 1900 United States Federal Census, Chicago, Cook County, Illinois, population schedule, Ward #8, E.D. #206, Sheet/Pg. 8 (written), B (stamped), house #302, dwelling #99, family #195, William Payne, digital image, Ancestry.com, http://search.ancestry.com/, accessed 6 Jul 2015, citing Twelfth Census of the United States, 1900. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 1900. T623, 1854 rolls.
8.) “Illinois, Cook County Deaths, 1878-1939, 1955-1994,” database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/N7W8-NJF : accessed 6 July 2015), William H. Payne, 27 Sep 1904; citing , Cook, Illinois, United States, source reference cn 13653, record number 77, Cook County Courthouse, Chicago; FHL microfilm 1,239,710.
9.) “United States, New England Petitions for Naturalization Index, 1791-1906,” database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:VXRC-Q6Z : accessed 6 July 2015), William Payne, 1841; citing Maine, NARA microfilm publication M1299 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.), roll 101; FHL microfilm 1,429,771.