This weeks challenge on 52 Ancestors was ” Plowing through”. Since 50% of my ancestors are farmers there are too many choices. So instead of taking the obvious, I go a different direction. Those who know me may realize when taking on a project I rarely chose a simple one. I often take on more then I might be prepared for yet I will persist and persevere until complete. Genealogy has been typical of one of those projects. Writing this blog is another. Within my genealogy project I have some of those brick walls that I continue to bang my head against. One of those brick walls relates to this weeks choice, Charles T. Ferguson. Charles is one that some would call a collateral relative as opposed to a direct ancestor. The direct ancestor is Margaret Helen (Ferguson) Dougherty (my great grandmother) and her brother would be a collateral.
I started looking at Charles because his mother (my 2x great grandmother) was listed in some places as Mary Agnes Lambert and in other places as Mary A. Hall. He was not the only sibling of Margaret Helen I was pursing, he is just the one I have chosen to tell this tale.
Charles T. Ferguson was born 18 February 1859 in New York State to Joseph A. Ferguson and Mary Lambert or Hall.
The 1860 US Census for Forrestburg in Sullivan County, New York shows Charles T. (1 years old) along with his older sisters Margaret H. (10) and Mary E. (8) and brother David W. (3). His father Joseph Ferguson (33) is a Laborer with $200 Real Estate and $100 personal property, born in Ireland. His Mother is Mary A (30) and she is shown as born in New York State.
On the 22 August 1862 Joseph Ferguson joins the union army as a volunteer in the New York 1st Mounted Rifles. To have taken a horse with you to war usually implied that you were fairly well to do.
In the 1870 US Census we find the family without Joseph, living in Scranton, Pennsylvania. Here Mary (40) is keeping house. Not living in the household is Margaret, who would be 20 years old and who has married John Lyle Dougherty in Scranton, and Mary E. who would be 18. In the family is David now 13 years old and working in a store. Charles is 10 and we now have Edwin who is 9. It looks like Mary has taken in three male borders probably to provide for the families expenses.
Charles is not in the 1880 US Census with either his mother or father. We lose him until the 1885 Kansas State Census where we find Charles Ferguson in Leavenworth, Kansas.
Sometime prior to 1884 Charles T. marries Rosa. Their first child shown here is Agnes born in 1884 in Kansas. presumably Leavenworth.
There is no 1890 Census so the next census we have for Charles is the 1900 US Census for Leavenworth Kansas . Here we find Charles Ferguson (41), having been married 17 years, which put his marriage to Rosa sometime in 1883. Charles occupation is listed as a mail carrier. Rosa his wife is shown as 39 and having given birth to 9 children, 7 of which are still living. The children listed are Agnes (#1) born in 1884, Frances (2) born 1886, William(3) born 1889, Gertrude (4) born 1891, Charles(5) born 1893, Gerald (6) born 1895 and Eddy (7) born 1898. I have not found any records for the two that have died.
In the 1905 Kansas State Census we find two more children Lucian (#8) born about 1901 and Harold (#9) born about 1904. Chas is now 46 years old and Rosa is 44 and all 9 children are still at home. By the next United States census Frances has moved out. All the other kids are still at home and Charles is 51 and still listed as a mail carrier and their daughter Agnes who is still single at 26 is listed as a Stenographer. William who is now 23 is a clerk and I believe it says grocery. This is a poor quality film. (Remember you can click on the image to enlarge).
In the 1920 United States census we find the family still living in Leavenworth in the same home.
Charles is listed as 60 years of age and working as a mail carrier. Agnes is still living at home a chief clerk for the National Military Home in Leavenworth. Edward (Edwin) is 22 and a brakeman on a steam railroad. Lucian and Harold are also at home being 19 and 15 respectively.
In the 1930 census we find that Agnes is listed as head of household at the same address in Leavenworth, where the real estate value is listed as $3500. Charles relationship to head of household is father, and now has none listed under occupation. Lets hope he retired from the Post Office with some sort of pension. Rose A. is listed as Mother and there is also Charles 14 and Omer N. 13 both listed as nephew, which we learned are Charles Jr’s. two children from his marriage to Marion. Not sure where Charles Jr. and Marion are during this census. I do know that Charles Jr. was in the Army. The kids may just be visiting with grandma and grandpa Ferguson.
Charles T. Ferguson dies in San Antonio, Texas of a Coronary Occlusion on Christmas day 1934 probably visiting, form Leavenworth Kansas, family for the holidays. I had sent for Charles death certificate to see what his mothers maiden name was listed as. When I received it I did not find a name for either of his parents, The certificate listed “no record”. But I did find that the informant was an F.J. Ferguson who was living on Dawson St. in San Antonio, Texas, with this information I was able to add what happened to Charles and Rosa’s son Frances to my collator relative information.
I am really glad I took this side track and learned so much about Charles and his large family and I know there are lots more cousins out there in Kansas and Texas and places yet to be discovered. And Madeleine, I do not think we will ever finish this project but who cares the persistence has brought me great joy.