A McCormack Christmas Ancestor Tree


This is something that I have wanted to do for a long time.  I have always wanted to make some Christmas ornaments that could be hung on a Christmas tree. I got my ideas from various genealogy blogs that I have seen over the years and also from many boards on Pinterest. About a week and half ago, a FB friend of mine posted her version of a Christmas Ancestor tree. She had a tree like mine but instead of bulb ornaments like I used, she used large Christmas gift tags. On those gift tags, she placed pictures of some of her ancestors that have died recently and those that have been died for a long time.

Anyway, for some reason, I got inspired to make my own version of a Christmas Ancestor tree. I did my research and found a place to buy my tree and ornaments. I tried to use one piece bulb ornaments but trying to uncurl a picture that could fit inside an ornament proved to be something that I found to be unworkable. Which is why I went with two piece bulb ornaments. I had much better control over the pictures that way.

This first set pictures I did have two pictures of each person, but after looking at my first sheet, I decided to go in a different direction. I decided to have a husband and wife in my (first) set of ornaments. As you will see below, I used red and green “pipe cleaners” around the edges of the pictures when they went inside the ornaments. 



Top row: William E. McCormack, Lavina J. (Hemingway) McCormack
Second row: Michael McCormack
Third row: Catherine (Paine) McCormack, John Michael McCormack
Fourth row: Gertrude (Peacock) McCormack

I would have finished this next sheet with couples, but I ran out of good quality pictures to use. Then I decided to use some of the children of those couples. I did try to have a sisters ornament and a matching brothers ornament, but I couldn’t get enough pictures of brothers to work. That is, I couldn’t get enough pictures to fit on the inside of the ornaments. Finally, I decided to close out with some pictures of children. 


Top row: Henry T. McCormack, Minnie Myrtle (Van Wormer) McCormack, Henry Peacock McCormack
Second row: Ethel (Davis) McCormack, Gertrude “Betty” Jeanette (McCormack) Waltz, Ethel Rebecca (McCormack) Tougeron
Third row: Alta Lyleth (McCormack) Ford, Edith Marie (McCormack) Bird and Lucille May (McCormack) Crozier
Fourth row: Group 1: Henry P. McCormack, Gertrude “Betty” Jeanette (McCormack) Waltz and Gerald Milton McCormack
Group 2: Merle Hemingway McCormack, Ruth Eleanor (McCormack) Farrell and Alta Lyleth (McCormack) Ford

Here are some pictures of the finished product. I think that it turned out pretty good. If I had more time, I would have put some tinsel on the tree. 

In the future, I hope to make a few more ornaments so that I can rotate the ornaments so that I don’t have the same ones on the tree every year. For example, I could make some ornaments that have a father and son pictures and also a mother and daughter ornament(s). 

Finally, I would like to take some time and thank those people that have contributed in some way that have made it possible for me to be able to complete a project like this. This endeavor to tell the story of Michael and Catherine McCormack’s family isn’t a singular effort by me. It is a group effort.

I also would like to wish every member of very extended family of Michael and Catherine McCormack a very merry Christmas and a very Happy New year!

Thank you for stopping by and I hope you learned something new!

The McCormacks in their own hand!

Sometime back, I saw another blogger write about their ancestor’s signatures. It seemed like a very good idea. Here are a few signatures of some of the McCormacks.

The very first signature that I would like show is of Michael McCormack. It is from his land grant/homestead application when he and his son, Edward J. McCormack were in the process of homesteading/buying some land in the northern portion of the lower peninsula of Michigan. This signature is dated 18 Nov 1884.


Michael McCormack [1]

The second signature is also from Michael. This is from his naturalization oath paperwork. It was dated 18 Nov 1884. 


Michael McCormack [2]

My next signature is from Michael’s youngest daughter, Katherine. It is from a five page letter that she wrote on 28 May 1918 to her niece, Edith Marie McCormack. Edith was the daughter of Katherine’s older brother, Henry. She wrote the letter to Edith about a month after the death of Edith Marie’s mother, Minnie McCormack from cancer.


Aunt Kate aka Katherine Fildelia (McCormack) Ingleright [3]

Robert was the son of Henry Peacock and Ethel (Davis) McCormack. This signature comes from Robert’s DD214 or his “Report Of Separation From The Armed Forces Of The United States.” He had serviced in WWII in addition to Korea. When he was discharged, he was a Captain and flown P-51s in both WWII and Korea.


Robert Michael McCormack [4]

My final signature is Nella Mae McCormack. Nell was the daughter of Henry Peacock and Ethel (Davis) McCormack. Her signature was from the marriage certificate of her marriage to her husband.


Nella Mae McCormack [5]

One thing that I noticed about Nell’s and Michael’s signature, in example #2, is how similar that she and Michael made their  big “C” in McCormack.

I thought this was an interesting and different way to talk about the McCormack clan. 

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


1. Application no. 1959, 29 February 1884, in Michael McCormack (Montmorency County) homestead file bearing final certificate no. 979, 30 January 1885, Detroit, Michigan, Land Office; Land Entry Papers, 1800-1908; Records of the Bureau of Land Management, Record Group 49; National Archives, Washington, D.C.

2. Michael McCormack Oath of Naturalization, 18 Nov 1884, currently held by Jeff Ford, [ADDRESS FOR PRIVATE USE,] Lebanon, Tennessee, 2013.

3. Katherine “Kate” (McCormack) Ingleright (Rose City, Michigan) to Edith Marie McCormack, 28 May 1918; privately by Lance Andrewsen, [RESEARCHER’S CONTACT INFORMATION,] 2011. The letter’s recipient is the grandmother of the current holder.  

4. Robert Michael McCormack DD214 “Report Of Separation From The Armed Forces Of The United States”, 31 Jan 1953; currently held by Jeff Ford, [ADDRESS FOR PRIVATE USE,] Lebanon, Tennessee, 2009.

5. Washington, Marriage Records, 1854-2013, database and digital image, Ancestry.com (https://www.ancestry.com: accessed 26 Sep 2016), entry for Chester John Lowney and Nella Mae McCormack, 23 Aug 1952, certificate No. 10371B.


December dates for the McCormack clan

Once again, I am republishing a post that I wrote a year ago although I have added more information on most of the people here. I apologize because I really would like to publish original posts.

2 Dec 1996William “Bill” McCormack died in Eugene, Oregon. William was the sixth of ten children of Henry P. and Ethel (Davis) McCormack.


William D. McCormack

2 Dec 1941Depsy Ann Crain was born in Placer, California. Depsy is the wife of a third cousin who is still alive and therefore I don’t wish to name him. I think you can tell what she like to do in her spare time. You can learn more about Depsy at my Find-A-Grave memorial for her.


Depsy Ann (Crain) McCormack

3 Dec 1892 – Ethel Davis was born in Anderson, California. Ethel was the wife of Henry Peacock McCormack, the son of John Michael McCormack. Henry was my first cousin twice removed. Ethel was the mother of six sons and four daughters. You can read more about Ethel at my blog posts, “Happy Birthday, Ethel Davis McCormack!” and “Wordless Wednesday – Mom at the beach!

Ethel Davis McCormack

Ethel Davis McCormack

3 Dec 1988 – Ethel Rebecca McCormack died. She passed away in Sonoma, California. Ethel was the daughter of Henry P. and Ethel (Davis) McCormack. Will you look at that smile? I think great smiles run in the family!

Ethel Rebecca McCormack Tougeron (B&W)

Ethel Rebecca McCormack Tougeron

5 Dec 1979Mae Ethel McCormack died in West Branch, Michigan. At the time, she lived near Mio, Michigan. She was the daughter of Edward J. and Elizabeth J. (Rohr) McCormack. For most of her life, she was a teacher in the Mio and Comins area schools. She was married to Hiram J. Stevens. At this time, I don’t have a picture of Mae.

5 Dec 1957 – Elizabeth Petronella (Dornauf) McCormack died in Ithaca. She lived there with  her sister-in-law, Margaret McCormack, the widow of Henry McCormack. Elizabeth was the wife of Arthur McCormack. 


Elizabeth J. McCormack

7 Dec 1898 – Charles Harold Barnes was born in Saginaw, Michigan. Charles was the first child of Maria “Minnie” McCormack and Charles Eli Barnes. He was my first cousin twice removed. You can read more about him at my blog posts, “Wednesday’s Child – Charles Harold Barnes” and “Happy Birthday, Charles Harold Barnes!
9 Dec 1917 – Frank J. McCormack died in Kankakee, Illinois. I really don’t know much about Frank. I do know that he worked for the Illinois Central railroad and was based in Kankakee, Illinois. He didn’t have any children. 

9 Dec 1886 – Edward J. McCormack and Elizabeth J. Rohr were married in Ypsilanti, Michigan. Edward’s younger brother Henry was one of the two witnesses.


Edward and Elizabeth’s record of marriage

9 Dec 1963 – Maria “Minnie” McCormack died. At the time of her death, she had been living with her younger sister, Katherine Ingleright in Niles, Michigan. Please check out her Find-A-Grave memorial
9 Dec 1894 – Donald J. McCormack was born in Lewiston, Michigan. Donald was the third child of Edward James McCormack and Elizabeth Jane Dimick. He was a corporal in the US Army during WWI. He also worked as a logger in Northern Michigan around the Mio area and helped out on the family farm in his younger days. You can see his more about Donald at my Find-A-Grave memorial for him. He was my first cousin twice removed.
11 Dec 1959 – Henry Peacock McCormack died in Fresno, California. Henry was the only son of John Michael and Gertrude (Peacock) McCormack. As a youth, he was something of a mechanical genius. He also experimented with early motorcycles.henry-the-aeroplane

Please check out his Find-A-Grave memorial


Henry Peacock McCormack

13 Dec 1942 – Gerald “Bum/Mac” Milton McCormack married Elizabeth “Libby” Lee Heaton. According to one his sons, Gerald was a mechanical genius having many patents in aeronautical and structural engineering.

16 Dec 1903 – Arthur Willard Farrell was born in Marinette County, Wisconsin. Arthur was the husband of my great-grandaunt, Ruth Eleanor McCormack. You can learn more about Arthur at my Find-A-Grave memorial for him and at my blog post, “An “Art Deco” pose!
17 Dec 1941 – Charles E. Barnes died in Ashtabula, Ohio. Charles was the former(?) husband of Maria “Minnie” McCormack. I say former(?) because I have conflicting information on the status of their marriage. Some records say divorced and other say widowed. Anyway, he was a sailor/Captain of various ships on the Great Lakes. Please check out his Find-A-Grave memorial.
22 Dec 1898 – John Michael McCormack was born and died in Reno, Nevada. John Michael was second son and child of John Michael and Gertrude Angeline (Peacock) McCormack. John, unfortunately, died on the day of his birth. It isn’t known if he was born alive and died sometime after birth or if he was stillborn. You can see more at my Find-A-Grave memorial for him.
23 Dec 1937 – Dorothy Ellen Wade married Henry Davis McCormack. They married in Reno, Nevada. Have you seen a more happy looking couple? No wonder that they were married for 64 years! 

28 Dec 1948 – Edward James Dorstewitz was born in Benton Harbor, Michigan. Edward was a Vietnam War veteran who died of Cancer due to exposure to Agent Orange. He was married to a third cousin who is still alive and therefore I don’t wish to name her. You can learn more about Edward at my Find-A-Grave memorial for him.
29 Dec 1926 – Merle H. McCormack married Lois Muriel Baker. They got married in Flint, Michigan.

I would like to remind everyone that there is a lot more to the people listed here. I hope that in small way, that I have helped to keep the memories of these people alive. If you have anything you would like to add about any of these people, please feel free to contact me.

Happy belated birthday to those whose birthdays have passed and happy birthday to the rest!

Thanks for stopping and reading this post. I hope you learned something new about the McCormack family.

Honeymoon in Havana?

I think it was a semi-coincidence, with Cuba being in the news, that I came across this record the other day. It is the manifest of a return trip of the S.S. Governor Cobb [3] from Havana, Cuba to Key West, Florida. On one hand, a record like this isn’t something too much out of the ordinary. But when you combine the fact that the participants, Harold McCormack and Pauline Humphrey,  in the return boat trip got married about two and half weeks before. They were married on 29 Jun 1928 in Ithaca, Michigan.

In my opinion, it “says” that they were returning from their honeymoon in Cuba.

I did some figuring on the travel time taken in the various segments. Harold and Pauline, I think, most likely left from Detroit, Michigan traveling on train to either Miami or Key West. That would have taken about 45 to 55 hours via train. The boat trip from Key West to Havana would have taken about 7 hours.


S.S. Governor Cobb manifest [1]

This is the happy couple much later in life with Pauline on the left and Harold on the right.

Harold & Pauline McCormack

Harold & Pauline McCormack [2]

Since both people have, unfortunately, passed away we can’t ask them if they did take their honeymoon in Cuba or what they were doing in Cuba.

This is the ship that they traveled on from Havana back to Key West.


S.S. Governor Cobb [3]

I really would have liked to hear some of the stories that Harold and Pauline would have told upon their return to central Michigan. To travel to Cuba during the Roaring ’20s would have been pretty exciting for anyone and I am especially sure that it was pretty exciting for the newlywed couple.

Thank you for stopping by and I hope you learned something new today!


  1. Florida, Passenger Lists, 1898-1963,” database with images, Ancestry.com (http://search.ancestry.com : accessed 27 Nov 2016), entry for  Harold McCormack, trip from Havana to Key West, FL; citing Records of the Immigration and Naturalization Service, 1787 – 2004, Micropublication T940. 122 rolls. NAI 4345370. Record Group 85. The National Archives at Washington, D.C.
  2. “Harold and Pauline McCormack”, privately held by Jeff Ford, [ADDRESS FOR PRIVATE USE,] Lebanon, Tennessee, 2009
  3. S.S. Governor Cobb

Happy Birthday, Aunt Kate!

Once again, I am doing something I don’t like to do. I am going repost my previously  published post about my great grand-aunt Kate, but since I haven’t been able learn anything new and I do want to honor the memory of my great grand-aunt Kate. I do wish that I could have met her while she was alive and well. I wonder what kind of lady she was. Thanks!


Today is my great grand-aunt Katherine “Kate” Fidelia (McCormack) Ingleright’s birthday. Katherine was the youngest of 10 children of Michael and Catherine McCormack. She was born on 26 Nov 1870 in Ypsilanti, Michigan.

Katherine (McCormack) Ingleright

Katherine (McCormack) Ingleright [1]

On 19 Jul 1899 in Lapeer, Michigan she married Leon Ray Ingleright of Niles, Michigan. For most of the next ten years, she and Leon lived with her parents in Otter Lake. [2] Sometime before the 1910 census, her husband who was a doctor, got his own practice or joined one in Rose City, Michigan. [3][4] As far as I know, she and Leon had two wonderful children, Violet Cassie and Leon Ray, Jr. They were born in 1901 and 1903 respectively and both in Rose City. At sometime between the 1920 and the 1930 censuses, Katherine and her family moved to Niles, Michigan. [5] They and their descendants would make Niles and the southwestern corner of Michigan their home up to the present.

There is one reason that my Aunt Katherine is special to me. She and I share the same birthday. I was born 91 years after her. In fact, she was still alive when I was born. But my parents had no knowledge of her branch of the McCormack family.

Thanks for stopping by and I hope you learned something!


1. picture of Katherine Fidelia (McCormack) Ingleright, , 2009, privately held by Jeff Ford, [ADDRESS FOR PRIVATE USE,] Lebanon, Tennessee, 2009
2. 1900 United States Federal Census, Otter Lake, Marathon Township, Lapeer County, Michigan, population schedule, ED 43, Pg. 7B, dwelling 173, family 173, Michael McCormack, digital image, Ancestry.com, http://search.ancestry.com, accessed 6 Feb 2011, citing Twelfth Census of the United States, 1900. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 1900. T623, 1854 rolls.
3. 1910 United States Federal Census, Rose City, Ogemaw County, Michigan, population schedule, Ward 3, ED 38, Pg. 250, dwelling 3, family 75, Leon R. Ingleright, digital image, Ancestry.com, http://search.ancestry.com/, accessed 1 Dec 2012, citing Thirteenth Census of the United States, 1910 (NARA microfilm publication T624, 1,178 rolls). Records of the Bureau of the Census, Record Group 29. National Archives, Washington, D.C.
4. 1920 United States Federal Census, Rose City, Ogemaw County, Michigan, population schedule, Ward 3, ED 280, dwelling 54, family 55, Leon R. Ingelright, digital image, Ancestry.com, http://search.ancestry.com/, citing Fourteenth Census of the United States, 1920. (NARA microfilm publication T625, 2076 rolls). Records of the Bureau of the Census, Record Group 29. National Archives, Washington, D.C.
5. 1930 United States Federal Census, Niles, Berrien County, Michigan, population schedule, Ward 3, ED 12, Pg. 235, dwelling 71, family 84, Leon R. Ingleright, digital image, Ancestry.com, http://search.ancestry.com/, citing Fifteenth Census of the United States, 1930. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 1930. T626, 2,667 rolls.

Thanksgiving and the McCormacks

A Henry McCormack Family Thanksgiving Dinner

A Henry McCormack Family Thanksgiving Dinner

I hope everyone has had a happy Thanksgiving with family and friends. At this time of year, I often wonder how my many McCormack relatives of the past celebrated Thanksgiving. Especially a couple of Irish immigrants in the 1850s. After all, Thanksgiving is an American invention and Michael, Catherine and their infant son, William were new to America. From a story that I was told by one of their grandchildren, they were still speaking Irish/Gaelic almost 50 years after they got here. I guess after a perilous journey across the Atlantic ocean that they would have had plenty to be thankful.

The next McCormack family that I wonder how they celebrated Thanksgiving were the John Michael McCormacks. By 1890, John Michael was in Reno, Nevada and married. What was Thanksgiving like in the old West and in the last decade of the 19th century? I guess again by that time, Thanksgiving would have seem pretty routine.

Thanks for indulging me while I wondered what Thanksgiving was like for some of the McCormack clan.

Now I would to give thanks for all the McCormacks, past and present that have helped me in my seemingly neverending journey to chronicle the vast McCormack clan. I don’t like to name living McCormack out of privacy concerns, but every McCormack has contributed in some way to this effort. I think I have done this before, a huge contribution to the telling of the McCormack story was done by Leroy “Doc” McCormack. Although he didn’t personally help me much, he pointed me to others in his branch of the family that would.

I would also like to thank my parents.

Happy Thanksgiving to everyone and thanks for stopping by!

McCormack family important dates for November

Hello! I know that it has been quite a long time since I last posted a story here. Sometimes life gets in the way of blogging. Even though it is almost the mid of November, I would like to start the month of November off with a post about important dates in the McCormack family.

The McCormack Family Reunion

The McCormack Family Reunion


3 Nov 1917: Gertrude “Betty” Jeanette McCormack was born. She was the first daughter and second child of Henry Peacock and Ethel (Davis) McCormack. She was born in Sparks, Nevada which is a “suburb” of Reno, Nevada.

Betty J McCormack Waltz

Gertrude “Betty” J. McCormack Waltz

4 Nov 1988: Suzanne Mae Smith died. Suzanne was the wife of William D. McCormack. He was the sixth child and fifth son of Henry Peacock and Ethel (Davis) McCormack. Suzanne and William had three children, one daughter and two sons. She died in Eugene, Oregon.

14 Nov 1861: Arthur A. McCormack was born. I hope you have had a chance to read the post, “Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap,” I wrote about Arthur recently. He was the only “bad boy” of the McCormack family that I know of. He was also the executor of his brother, Frank J. McCormack’s estate.

Arthur McCormack

Arthur McCormack at the family reunion in Otter Lake, Michigan.

15 Nov 1860: Patrick J. McCormack died. Actually, I don’t know for sure if Patrick was his first name. The way his name appeared on the 1861 Canada census it looked like to me that it was PJ.Since Michael’s father was named Patrick and at the time, I had just lost a (newly found) cousin by the name Patrick J., I decided to name him Patrick J. McCormack. Unfortunately in his short life, his entry on the 1861 Canadian census was his only notable achievement.

16 Nov 1951: Henry McCormack died. Henry was Michael and Catherine’s seventh child and sixth son. He was a leading member of the Ithaca business community. Here are some blog posts about Henry; “Pictures of Henry McCormack and family”, “Sunday’s Obituary – Henry McCormack”, Wordless Wednesday – Three Generations of the Henry McCormack family”.

Henry McCormack

a young Henry McCormack

21 Nov 1912: Michael McCormack died. The patriarch of the McCormack clan. Here is a post to get your appetite wetted!

Michael McCormack

Michael McCormack

21 Nov 1856: Edward James McCormack was born. Like the rest of his brothers, save for his older brother William, he was born in London, Ontario, Canada. Edward was the third child and second son. I believe sometime in the early 1880s, Edward and Michael came up with the idea of moving up to the northern Lower Michigan to farm.

24 Nov 1885: Grace Ellen McCormack was born. Grace was the only child of William E. McCormack and Lura Grace Roys (she was William’s first wife).

Grace McCormack

Grace McCormack Woodbury about 1957.

26 Nov 1870: Katherine Fidelia McCormack was born. Katherine is one of my favorite McCormack relatives. Perhaps the first reason is that she and I share the same birthday of November 26th. She is also the only female child of Michael and Catherine that I have a picture of.

Aunt Katherine

Katherine (McCormack) Ingleright

26 Nov 1986: Raymond Louis Tougeron died. Ray was the husband of Ethel Rebecca McCormack. She was the second daughter and seventh child of Henry Peacock and Ethel (Davis) McCormack. She and Ray would have one daughter and three sons.


Raymond L. Tougeron, Sr.

29 Nov 1883: William McCormack married Lura Grace Roys. Lura was William’s (my great-grandfather) first wife. They were married in Ypsilanti, Michigan. Lura was from Ypsilanti. They had one daughter, Grace Ellen McCormack before the unfortunate death of Lura.

– – – – – –

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!