Unbearable Marital Infelicity

I found an article about one of my ancestors about three years ago and was very intrigued by it.  I knew I would write a story about it at some point, I just had to find the right time.  But it seems that there never is a right time when writing about an ancestor’s suicide.

So even though it doesn’t feel like the right time, it does feel like the time to write it.  At least that’s what I’m doing.  The ancestor I’m talking about is John Stanbrough, my great great great grandfather.  Obviously I didn’t know him, but I do think about him from time to time.  There is no photo of him that I know of, even though he did live into the time of photography.  At the time of his birth in 1820, photography was not around.  But during his 57 years of living, it had developed quite a bit.

Let me tell you about my connection to him.  I am the son of Betty Lou Bucklin Landry.  Her father was Fred Bucklin, who was the son of Addie May Hine Bucklin.  Addie was the daughter of Susan Stanbrough Hine.  Sue was the third daughter and sixth child of John Stanbrough & Lydia Mills Stanbrough.   There was an older half brother by her father’s first wife.  She also had six younger siblings.

John Stanbrough was born November 18, 1820, in Clinton County, Ohio.   He was a Quaker.  For a genealogist, that is a good thing because it means that there are lots of records for that person and their ancestors.  The Stanbrough or Stanborough family had been in the US for many generations.  They started out in New York and moved on to Tennessee.  Our line went on to Ohio and then to Indiana around 1830.  Grandma Sue brought our line down to Louisiana in 1894.

John married Lydia Hunt in 1838.  They had one son together in 1839 and then Lydia died in 1842.  Not long after that, John met another Lydia.  This one had the last name of Mills.   They were married on Sept. 20, 1843.  If you added up the children I mentioned earlier, you’d know that they had a dozen children together over about a 20 year period.

The Noblesville Ledger from March 24, 1873, in Indiana.

Then in 1873, just 10 years after the birth of their last child, Lydia died at the age of 50.  The Noblesville, Indiana, newspaper article incorrectly gives her age at death as 45.  This was the second Lydia that he had lost.   And she was an “estimable lady.”

Later that year, Sue Stanbrough married George Hine and they started a family.  Addie May was born on Sept. 23, 1876, in Noblesville, so there were some happy things going on for John at the time.  He must have gotten lonely again (even with several children in his house), because he decided to get married again in 1877.  He married the widow Margaret Hollis Embree on June 3.  She was 16 years younger and she had six children of her own. 

Obituary of John Stanbrough

I had seen a lot of this information before three years ago when I first saw the transcription of the newspaper article about John Stanbrough’s death.  I wonder if his friends and neighbors were surprised like I was to see this information about a suicide?  What would make a recently married man feel that this was the choice he should make?

The article gives a few clues.  John took an overdose of morphine.  He was able to get grains of morphia without any question from a doctor.  He was taking quinine because he suffered from ague.  This condition of recurring severe chills and fever and him taking quinine point to malaria, which is usually accompanied by pain in the bones and joints.  Chronic pain is not an easy thing to deal with.  Yet this was not cited as a possible cause for his “rash act.”

The article does talk about John leaving a message as to how to dispose of his personal effects.  They suspected that his reasons for the action were marital “infelicity” and financial problems.  They point out that he only married his wife seven months ago, that she had six children, and that they didn’t get along particularly well.  Yet she, also, was an “estimable” woman. 

I’m sure this hit Grandma Sue quite hard.  She was living in the same town at the time and her younger siblings were in the house when all of the commotion was going on.  It was a traumatic time for the Stanbrough household of 1877 Noblesville.  I’m sure it was not John’s intention to traumatize his family.  All he could probably see was the pain and problems that he was experiencing.  He likely thought that they’d be better off without him.

A thought that nobody else likely agreed with.

Surprise! Addie’s Parents Were Cousins!!!

I know.  Some of you are saying, “So what?  I’ve heard this so many times already.”  But this time it’s different.  I’m not talking about the Landry side of the family, I’m talking about the Bucklin side of the family.  More specifically, I’m talking about the Hine line of my family. 

My mom was Betty Lou Bucklin Landry.  She was the daughter of Fred D. Bucklin.  His mother was Addie Mae Hine Bucklin.  She was born in Noblesville, Indiana, but lived her adult life in southern Louisiana.  She was alive when I was born, but she died a few weeks later.  So I have no personal memories of her.  Maybe some of my older siblings or cousins may have some memories of her.  I’ve posted several photos of her in the past and have given her a hard time about all the times that she was scowling in the photos.  Even in this photo she’s not really smiling.

Addie Mae Hine Bucklin (on the right) with her parents Susan G. Stanbrough Hine and George Henry Hine in Hathaway, Louisiana, circa 1919.

Maybe it was because she found out that her parents were related!  I doubt it, though.  She probably wasn’t even aware of the fact, because they were not very closely related.  But from what I’ve been able to figure out, they were definitely cousins.

I discovered this connection shortly after I found out the maiden name of George Henry Hine’s mother.  Her name was Mary Malina Cox.  She was the daughter of Benjamin Cox and Jemima Vestal Cox.  That name was very familiar to me.  It was not because of any association with pancakes, either. 

It had to do with Susan Stanbrough’s ancestry.  I had found the Vestal name in her family tree a few years ago.  When I started looking at relatives in that family group, I found a few Jemima Vestals.  It seemed to have been a common family name at some point, but its usage has declined.  Though my sister Jamie’s name is close.  All you’d have to do is add a second ‘m’ and rearrange the letters.  It wouldn’t really work, though.  “Jemima crack corn” just doesn’t have the same ring as “Jamie crack corn.”  Sorry, Jamie, I couldn’t resist!

So Susan’s ancestry goes like this:  Susan’s mother was Lydia Jane Mills.  Susan’s grandfather was James Mills.  Her great grandmother was Lydia Jay.  Her great great grandmother was Mary Elizabeth Vestal (there it is!).  And her great great great grandparents were William Vestal and Elizabeth Mercer.  This was a pretty long time ago – they were born in the late 1600s.   Elizabeth was born in Great Britain, but William and Mary Elizabeth were born in Pennsylvania.

On Henry’s side I’ve already told you his grandmother’s name.  His great grandfather was Jesse Vestal and his great great grandfather was Thomas Curren Vestal.  Thomas Current Vestal was the younger brother of Mary Elizabeth Vestal.  That would mean that William Vestal and Elizabeth Mercer were also the great great great grandparents of Henry Hine.  So he and his wife Susan were fourth cousins through their Vestal connection.

Fourth cousins sounds pretty far when you first hear it, but it’s interesting to see it in association with this same family.  Two of Addie’s sons were Ralph and Fred Bucklin.  Ralph’s daughter was Helen and Fred’s daughter was Betty Lou, my mom.  Helen and mom were first cousins.  Helen’s son and my sister Karen are second cousins.  Their children are third cousins and their grandchildren are fourth cousins.

So what have we learned?  Henry and Sue were fourth cousins.  I was alive at the same time as their daughter Addie.  At present, there are descendants of Addie who are fourth cousins to each other.  All of this together indicates that I’m getting old.  Yet it doesn’t make me feel old.  It makes me feel like I’m learning perspective.

But you can call me old if you want too.

Grandma Sue and the Granddaughters in 1919

I’ve posted three other photos that were taken on the same day as the photo I’m posting today.  The photos were taken around 1919 somewhere near Hathaway, Louisiana.  The first photo I shared from that day was posted over two years ago.  The other two photos were shared in 2017.  I didn’t post any in 2018, so I’m thinking it is time to share this one.  The only problem is that I don’t have any more from that date, so this is it.  Unless, of course, a few more show up in the future.

Susan G. Stanbrough Hine with her seven granddaughters in 1919.

One of the photos was of my great great grandfather George Henry Hine with his grandsons.  This photo is of his wife Susan G. Stanbrough Hine with her granddaughters.  Of course, we all know her now as Grandma Sue, since we found letters that she wrote and signed as Sue.

Sue and George were born in Hamilton County, Indiana, as were their six children Addie, Bert, Rowe, Lonnie, Jim, and Ollie.  Before any of the children were married, the family had moved to southern Louisiana.  So all of their grandchildren were born in Louisiana, except for Robert Bucklin who was born during the short stint that Addie and Lou Bucklin spent in Arkansas.

In the photo you can see Grandma Sue in the middle of the photo surrounded by her granddaughters.  She actually looks happy in this photo.  Like her daughter Addie, she tended to not smile in photos and in some cases it looks like they are scowling.  But she has a nice smile in this photo, which I really like.  Sitting in her lap is her youngest granddaughter at the time Wanda Hine, who was the daughter of Bert.  She was born in 1917 and is the younger sister to Leta Hine.  Leta can be seen on the far right in the photo and she was born in 1912.

On the far left of the photo is a little girl with her head hung down.  Her name is Alta Zay Hine, she was born in 1912, and she was the daughter of Lonnie.  I don’t know what she was sad about.  Maybe she wanted to be the one sitting in Grandma Sue’s lap?  Standing between Alta and Grandma Sue is Audrey Hine.  Her father was Jim and she was born in 1910.  She would have a younger sister named Darlene in four years.  Darlene would have Grandma Sue around for the first ten years of her life.

Standing behind Grandma Sue is the oldest granddaughter.  Her name was Mary Bucklin and she was born in 1900.  We saw a photo of her with her mother Addie along with Sue and George previously.  Addie’s middle daughter is the girl in the dark dress.  Her name is Edna Bucklin and she was born in 1909.  Addie had six sons in a row between those two girls. (Including my maternal grandfather Fred D. Bucklin) There was either one or two sons between Edna and the next daughter Ruth.  She was born in 1915, but so was her twin brother Roy.  So if Ruth was born first, only Robert was between Edna and Ruth.  Otherwise Ruth was the last child born to Addie and Lou.

So that’s it.  Sue and her girls have all been identified.  Oh, wait!  I mentioned Ruth, but forgot to say which one was her.  But since I have pointed out all of the others in the photo, you know that she was young girl in the front on the right of the photo.  She seems preoccupied with something she has in her arms.  It looks like it could be a stuffed animal or such and her little cousin Wanda seems drawn to it as well.

Now we’re done.  Everyone accounted for.

Say so long to Grandma Sue.

Stanbrough or Hine?

The family of George Hine and Susan Stanbrough with relatives (presumably) circa 1898.

Here is an old photo from the collection.  Maybe I should say it is from the collective.  (Resistance is futile!)  It is from a collection of photos from my mom’s side of the family.  My grandfather’s sisters collected old photos and passed them on to my mom’s cousin Louise.  She and her son Joseph have scanned them and generously share them with family, including me.  This photo has been edited quite a bit to clean it up and make repairs.  Joseph started it and then shared it with me.  I cleaned it up a bit more and brought it to this version.

The first version I ever saw was quite decrepit.  I’ll tell you why.  It looks like one of the things that Louise did was to print out many of these old photos and made photocopies.  Then she went around (or mailed them out) asking the aunts and cousins to identify as many of the people as they could.  There were some identifications attributed to my mom.  She had a good memory for many years and was pretty good at recognizing those old relatives.  The famed family historian Edith Keys Segraves was questioned for some of those photos.

For this photo, Edna Bucklin Keys was consulted.  She identified the older couple sitting to the right as “Grandpa” and “Susan Stanbrough Hine.”  On the left border of the photo it read “Stanbrough family?”  Evidently no one knew who the other people in this photo were, but it was assumed that they were family.  I tend to agree.

1898 – Detail with names

I’m pretty sure that their daughter Addie Hine is standing behind Grandpa George Hine and Grandma Sue.  (Addie was the mother of my maternal grandfather Fred Bucklin.) She is usually standing behind her parents in photos, and in some she has her hand on her mother’s shoulder.  I recognize their sons from other photos that I’ve seen.

On the right is their son Rowe.  To the left of Addie is Jim and the next male to the left is Lonnie (also in dark jacket).  The youngest son Ollie is sitting on the ground and also wearing a dark jacket.  There is another son named Bert and I assume that it is him standing behind Addie.

The other people in the photo are a mystery.  As Aunt Edna indicated, they could be extended Stanbrough family. Grandma Sue had eleven siblings and one older half brother. The other possibility is that the others were part of the extended Hine family.  Grandpa George had six siblings.  Both sides of the family lived in Indiana.

I’m thinking this was two families taking a photograph together.  The older woman sitting on the left and the man standing next to her are likely the parents or grandparents of the other people in the photo.  I looked through my family tree to see if any family grouping looked similar in structure to the one in the photo, but I don’t think I have enough information to come to any conclusion.  So a mystery they remain.

In the meantime I will be looking to see if anyone from those extended Stanbrough and Hine families post the same photo or photos of the same people.  If you perchance should know who any of them are, do let me know.  I would greatly appreciate it.

A Dash at the Bash

I really like this old photo.  It was probably not something that was cherished, however.  It is a bit of a blurry photo.  I think it came from my second cousin Joseph Connors (his maternal grandfather Herbert Bucklin was the brother of my maternal grandfather Fred).  He found an envelope of old negatives from a special event back in the 1920s.

Oct. 3, 1926 – Grandma Sue with her family at her birthday bash.

The special event was Grandma Sue (Susan G. Stanbrough Hine, maternal grandmother of Herbert and Fred) and her good friend Jennie’s (Edessa Jane Welton Havenar, grandmother of our Keys family historian Edith Keys Segraves) joint birthday celebration.  They both had an October 3 birthday and they celebrated together with a joint celebration for at least 20 years.  I know that because there was a newspaper article about that big celebration in 1926.  There were lots of photos taken of family and friends.

You’ve already seen some of the large group photos of most of the attendees because Joseph and I have shared them previously.  Then there were a few pictures of Grandma Sue with her children and grandchildren.  And then there’s this photo.  It might have been a throwaway photo that only survived because the negatives were grouped together.

But I like the photo.  It’s a photo of the family and it includes Grandma Sue, her daughter Addie (my great grandmother), some of her sons, grandsons, and granddaughters.  The fun thing about the photo is its defect.  It’s either a double exposure with the second exposure being a long one, or it was a long exposure and people didn’t realize it.  Because you can see one of the granddaughters in two places.  You can see that she was initially standing in beside Grandma Sue and then she must have made a mad dash to get to somewhere else.

You can also see one of the Hine men (a brother of Addie) on the right is turning around to look toward the men who are talking in front of their sporty new cars.  Another granddaughter on the left with a Y type collar can be seen walking away to the left.  You can just make out some of the feet of people who have moved forward after the first exposure (or after the initial exposure.)

Meanwhile it looks like Grandma Sue hasn’t moved a bit.  It was her 75th birthday celebration after all.  She might have slowed down a little at that point.  So the picture captures more than just a split second from that day.  It captures some of the movement as well.  It’s the closest thing we have to a video or Live photo from back then.

Article from the Jennings Daily Times Record from Dec. 12, 1906

I thought I would also share an article I found that relates to this annual birthday celebration.  This is part of page 8 of the Jennings Daily Times Record from Dec. 12, 1906.  They are giving the news from the Raymond area.  The first few articles are about people I don’t know nor recognize any names.  Then there is a little blurb about some of the Hine family visiting in Jennings.

After that is some information about the weather and how it affects the farmers of the area.  It’s interesting to see what they wrote in the papers back then.  I’m glad they did, because I have been able to find some interesting articles about my family.  Like the next part of the column.

It talks about the goings on of the birthday celebration in 1906, back when Grandma Sue was just 55 years old.  Younger than I am now.  Even though the main course was oysters, which I don’t really care for, I’m sure there were other tasty items on the menu that I could have enjoyed.  It’s obvious that people were having a good time.  I suppose this was the first celebration and it was such a hit that they decided to continue with it.

I do enjoy these old photos and articles about my family.  It makes them much more personable to me.  And the photos from the birthday celebration are great because so many family members were in attendance.  Not just my Hine family, but the Bucklin, Keys, and Phenice ones as well.  A veritable family smorgasbord.

Grandpa Bucklin’s Grandma Sue

George and Susan Hine circa 1890

This post is about my maternal grandfather’s Hine grandparents.  My mom was Betty Lou Bucklin Landry and her father was Fred Bucklin.  He had his maternal grandmother for quite a while, because she died shortly before my mom was born in 1933.  She died on March 29th and mom was born May 20th when grandpa was only 25 years old.  Grandpa’s mother was Addie Hine Bucklin, who was the daughter of George Hine and Susan G. Stanbrough Hine.

This photo is of George and Susan in around 1890.  I’m not really sure of the date, but comparing it to the other photos of this couple, that is the best estimation that I have.  The other photos of them are with children and grandchildren.  This is the only one that I’ve seen of just the two of them.

Transcribed letter of Sue Hine from 1916

The reason I chose this photo and called the post what I did was because of two letters I found recently on Ancestry.  These two letters were written by Susan Stanbrough Hine.  The first one was written in 1916.  It was written to her brother Joseph B. Stanbrough.  It must have been included as a short note with a letter addressed to his granddaughter Eula Stanbro (daughter of Orville C. Stanbrough).  It was written shortly after the death of their brother Nelson, who was the oldest of the eleven siblings in the family.  (There was an older half brother named Albert Stanbrough who died in 1854 and another brother Lucius that died as an infant in 1855.)  Albert was born in 1839, Nelson in 1844, Joseph B. in 1845, and Susan in 1851.

The second letter was written in 1923 after the death of another brother Jim.  He was born the year before Susan and moved to Louisiana with Susan and her family.  In the first letter she mentions him and it seems like he lives with the family.  This letter was written to Eula’s younger sister Nola Stanbro.

Transcribed letter of Sue Hine from 1923

I don’t know the person who posted the letters on Ancestry, and the only thing that was posted were transcripts of the letters.  I sent a request to see the original letters, because I’d like to see the handwriting of my great great grandmother.  The letters seem legitimate, because they talk about the Hine and Bucklin families with details that only family would have known about.  My favorite part of the letters is the way she signed them.  In the first one (directed to her brother), she signs off as Sister Sue.  I always thought of her as Susan because that’s her given name and she always looks a bit stern in the photos.  I wondered if that’s what her family called her, or was it just this one brother.  When I saw the second letter I found my answer.  She signed off on the second letter as Aunt Sue.

So now and forevermore she will be known to me as Grandma Sue.  I like knowing the name that people went by when they were alive.  It’s a little more personal.  It would also be a bit more personal if I had a scan of the actual letters that were written.  But for now all we have are the transcripts, which are great in themselves.  One day I hope that will change and I can share scans of the letters with everyone.

Mom and siblings’ family tree with Stanbrough line highlighted. On the right is a list of the family of Grandma Sue.

A Letter from Aunt Sue

This is from a letter written by Susan G. Hine to Miss Nola Stanbro, Lovington, N. Mexico about the death of James Stanbrough. (Nola is the grandaugher of Joseph B. Stanbrough.)

Elton, La. Oct 29, 1923

My dear niece and all

It has been so long since I wrote to you I expect you have forgotten us. but it sure has been a busy summer and fall. the boys are threshing their Rice now but think they will just about finish up this week. Ollie is not going to have as good a crop this year as he did last but the prices are better so I guess we will come out alright. I told you in one of my letters that Uncle Jim was failing so fast. Well there was an epodemic of colds going round. I was quite sick but did not give up and have the Dr. but was miserable. so about the time I got better Bro took a hard cold. I Dr. him just as I did myself. and we all thought he was getting better he did not cough hardley any. so one morning he had a hemorage. and we sent for the Dr. he said he had taken fresh cold and it was almost pneumonia, but not bad. gave him medicine and told me what to rub on his chest but he did not get much better. he would seem better every other day. he said there was not anything that hurt him. he just seemed wore out so he just got weaker and weaker. the Dr. came again and said we might just as well make up our minds to give him up for there was no hope. one day I asked him if he wanted to get well and he said O I don’t know but he did not say anything about dying. but he told the minister he was living for Christ he was all to him. the day the Dr. Said there was no hope. but he might live till morning. but the Death angle came for him that evening at 6:30, Sept 10. he just passed a way without a strugle. I was glad he did not have to suffer. and of course we all have that debt to pay sooner or later. I am ashamed to ask forgiveness for not writing sooner. for I feel like I should not but I was just about wore out. for Bro just wanted me to wait on him all the time. and they were cutting Rice and I had to cook for the hands. and just kept puting it off from day to day. but will try to do better next time. so will close hoping to hear from you soon. I am as ever. Aunt Sue

George and Susan’s Eighteen in ’19

George and Susan with their 18 in ’19. A nice old family photo from almost a hundred years ago.

George Henry Hine and his wife Susan G. Stanbrough Hine had eighteen living grandchildren in 1919. Their daughter Addie’s fifth child did not make it past infancy or there would be one more in this photo.  There are actually more people in the photo.  It includes their six children and a few unidentified people who are most likely family.

Before I get too far, let me remind you who George and Susan are to me.  I am Van Landry and my mother was Betty Lou Bucklin Landry.  Her father was Fred Bucklin who is one of the twin boys standing directly behind George (the seated man).  The twins’ mother Addie Hine Bucklin (my great grandmother) is standing directly behind them.  Addie’s parents are George and Susan, who are my great great grandparents.  I’ve actually posted two other photos previously that were taken at the same occasion, though they were of smaller groups than this.

What’s that you ask?  ‘Who are all of those people?’ Well I already told you who the important ones are, so I suppose you want me to name everyone.  So that is what I will attempt to do.  I think we’ve settled it now that George and Susan are the older couple sitting in the front of all of their progeny.  They were from Indiana and while there, they had their six children.  They then moved to Louisiana in 1894 where the children grew up and started families of their own.

Hine family group in 1919 with name designations.

Addie was the first one born and she was the first one to provide them with a grandchild.  She is the one with the big A on her head in the second photo.  She was married to Louis Charles Bucklin, but he rarely showed up in photos.  Their first child was Leo (A1) who was born in 1898.  According to a letter written by Susan in 1916, Leo had an accident with a saw blade that left him “a cripple.”  Leo did walk with a limp for the rest of his life.  Next was Mary (A2) who was born in 1900.  Ralph (A3) was born in 1902 and he later had a daughter named Helen.  In 1903 Addie and Lou had a son named Paul, but he was the one that did not live past infancy, so he is not in the photo.

In 1904 a son named Carl (A5) was born.  The photos from this date are the only ones of him that I know of.  When he was very young, he lost his hearing and never learned to speak.  I don’t know if there were any other learning deficiencies or just that there was no Anne Sullivan out in the country in 1919, but I don’t think he had an education.  When my mom was a kid, she was kind of scared of him.  He stayed up in his room a lot, but sometimes he came down to sit on “his nail keg in the kitchen.”

On to number A6.  That would be Herbert born in 1906, who was the grandfather of Joseph.  Too bad Herbert is mostly hidden behind an unidentified boy in the photo.  Clarence (A7) and Fred (A8) came along in 1907.  Clarence is the father of Carla, and Fred is the grandfather of me and all my maternal cousins.  In 1909 Edna (A9) was born.  One of her sons was Mel Keys (my mom’s first cousin through the Bucklins and 2nd cousin through the Keys) who helped to build the working model of the Starship Enterprise for the original Star Trek series.  And he is the father of Steven and Teresa.

The tenth child of Addie and Louis was Robert (A0) who was born in 1911.  He’s sitting in the front looking a little sad.  We have seen that same look time and again from his mother.  I’ve given her a hard time about it on these blog posts, but look at her mother Susan.  She has a big frown on her face as well.  I guess Addie came by that scowl honestly.  Yet there is a photo of Susan with a smile on it from this same day.  I’ll save that for a special occasion!

Back to the list of people – particularly the children of Addie.  We’ve already named ten!  But there are two more to go.  In 1915 she had another set of twins.  Not identical ones this time.  A girl by the name of Ruth (AA) was born with a boy named Roy (AB).  Ruth is the matriarch of the Bruchhaus branch of our family and Roy was the father of Jeannette and Doris.

On now to the second child of George and Susan.  Take heart, some of them did not have any children at all.  After Addie was born in 1876, along came Bert in 1878.  He was married to Anna Jones (BW) and they had three children.  Leta (B1) was born in 1912, Wanda (B2) was born in 1917, and Harold was born in 1921.  Being that the photo was taken in 1919, Harold can not be seen in the photo.

Harrison Rowe is the next child of George and Susan.  Rowe was born in 1880 and he was married to a woman named Electra (or May).  She may be the dark haired woman standing in front of Rowe, but I don’t have any identified photos of her.  They did not have any children that I know of.

Lonnie was born in 1882 and he was married to Millie (LW).  They had two children and they both show up in this photo.  Arthur Henry (L1) was born in 1905 and Alta Zay (L2) was born in 1912.  Jim was born in 1884 and he was married to Dorinda Thomas (JW) who had been a teacher at Nubbin Ridge in the Hathaway area.  They had four children together.  Aulden (J1) was born in 1908.  He graduated from Jennings High School in 1926 (the year after my grandmother Myrtle Phenice Bucklin) and lived the rest of his life in Jennings, Louisiana.  Audrey (J2) was born in 1910.  The baby at the time was Kenneth (J3) who is in his daddy’s arms.  Later on another daughter was born. Her name was Darlene and she was born in 1923.  She was married to Dalton Landry in Jennings.  I remember being confused about this when I was a kid.  They were Landrys but they were related to us from Mama’s side of the family?  What?  It doesn’t seem confusing at all now.

The last child of George and Susan was Ollie who was born in 1886.  He was a mama’s boy.  When he was younger he dated a girl, but he was too connected to his mom to allow the relationship to become more serious.  I’m not sure if he lived with both parents at this time, but after his father died later this year, the 1920 census shows him living with his mom and her 70 year old brother James Stanbrough.  Ollie lived with his mother until she died in 1933 and only married after that time.  He was a mama’s boy.

But Susan must have been a loving person.  She seemed fond of her children and grandchildren.  She also had her brother living with her family for many years.  He came down from Indiana with her family and he never married as well.  I don’t know his story.  He may be one of the identified men in this photo – possibly the bearded man in the back left.  There is also another adult man, an adult women, and some children who are unaccounted for.  I wish I knew who they were.

Well, that’s it. Thanks for traveling back to 1919 with me.  I hope you enjoyed it.  But most of all I wish you a Happy Thanksgiving.

A Yuletide Story

I spend a lot of time doing research.  I know that this does not surprise anyone who has been reading my posts.  During this research I come across a lot of stories.  Some stories are inspiring.  Some stories are happy.  Some are sad.  It’s not that I go looking for stories, I just find them in my search for family history.  And sometimes a story really strikes something in me that makes me want to share it with people.  I found a story like that this week.  It is a very tragic story that needs to be told.

But I’m not telling you that story this week.  I already had a tragic story picked out to tell you this week.  The odd thing about those two stories is that they both occurred on the same calendar date.  But there are even more commonalities in the story that I am telling this week.  Plus there is a tie-in with Christmas and it definitely is more tragic.  Isn’t that what everyone wants this week?  A tragic Christmas-themed story?  Well that’s what you are getting from yours truly.

This story is about two cousins.  Actually those cousins are third cousins.  Two girls were born a bit over eighty years ago and they were great granddaughters of two Stanbrough sisters.  These two distant cousins never met.  They grew up and they both found the man of their dreams.  One of the girl’s names was Dolores Henke and she married her childhood sweetheart named Frank Yule. His name is our first Christmas connection.  (You know like, “Yuletide carols being sung by a choir.”)  The other girl was Betty Lou Bucklin, my mom.  And we all know that she married the love of her life.

After these young women married their respective husbands, both of the families went to live in California.  Not long after that, their families started to grow.  Actually they started to grow at a remarkably similar pace.  They each gave birth to their first child, a daughter with a “J” name, in California in October of 1953.  Our Jodie was born on Oct 14th and their little Janice was born just eight days later.

Though my family moved to New Mexico, the similarities continued. Both of the families had their second child, a son, born in April of 1955.  Their Scott was born on the 21st and our Rob was born just six days later.  That’s amazingly close.  Even though the families moved further away from each other geographically, a few more parallels took place.  The next child born to each of these families was a girl with the given middle name of Jean.

Now you can see why I connected with this story.  Their family started in much the same way that mine did.  It seems like a rather happy story, too.  And I suppose it probably was up to this point.  But that wasn’t what initially got my attention to look at this family a little closer.  You start looking at things in family trees and other documents.  You have to make sure the birth and death dates are accurate and make sense.  So you look at those dates closely.  When you see children with similar year of birth, you think twins.  But when you see the same year for the death of more than one or two people in a family, you think tragedy.  And that is what I found.

The Landry family in 1961.

There is one more similarity that I know of.  In the later part of 1961, both of these families were involved in automobile accidents.  Our family got into an accident in Lake Charles on our way to my mom’s family for Christmas.  (This is the other Christmas connection.)  We were thrown around a bit, Rob was ejected from the car, but for the most part we were fine.  We were able to celebrate Christmas and a new year.  The same can not be said for the Yule family.

The Yule family was driving on Highway 399 in Ventura, California, on Sept. 17, 1961.  They were traveling along in their station wagon when a truck made an illegal turn in front of their vehicle.  That was the day that all similarities between these families ended.  Because, you see, all five members of the family perished that day.  The father was the oldest at 34 years of age and the youngest was three year old Barbara Jean.  A truly tragic ending.

Safe travels this Christmas.

Sept. 13, 2017 – Addendum

Christmas 1961 in Lake Charles




I was going through a packet of papers that I had gotten from my parents’ home in Jennings in January of 2016 and came across this old newspaper article.  My mom liked to save things.  Sometime that was a bad thing and sometimes it was a good thing.  This time it was a good thing.

1919 – A Family Outing

Sometimes I wonder if people are unsure of what I’m talking about.  I jump around from one side of the family to the next so I don’t leave anybody out.  I guess if someone is interested enough about the connections, they will ask.  Sometimes people just want to look at the pictures and move on to the next post.  Well, stop that!  I want you to read everything I write.  Now that you know what I want, you will always do the right thing.

So to keep things from getting confused this week, I’ll start with me.  My name is Van Landry and I was born in Lake Charles, Louisiana, to Robert Joseph “Bob” Landry, Jr. and Betty Lou Bucklin Landry.  My dad was born in 1929 in Lake Charles and my mom was born in 1933 in Raymond, Lousiana.  Her father was Fred D. Bucklin, who was born in Roanoke, Louisiana, in 1907.  This information sets you up for the photo this week.

1919 - Hine

Hine/Bucklin/Stanbrough family group in 1919

The photo was taken in 1919 somewhere around the Hathaway/China area.  It was a Hine family get together.  There are several photos taken that day with all of the family in different groups.  This is a small group.  The young girl in the photo (on the far right) is my grandfather Fred’s oldest sister Mary Bucklin, who was born in 1900.  She would be 19 years old in this photo.  Five years later she would marry Sylvan Phenice, the brother of Fred’s future wife Myrtle. (Sylvan and Mary were married in 1926.  Fred and Myrtle were married in 1930.)  Sylvan and Mary were together for 56 years until Sylvan’s death in 1982.  They did not have any children.  Mary died in 1987.

The woman in the middle of the photo is the mother of Fred and Mary (and ten other children) and was named Addie Mae Hine at birth.  She was born in 1876 in Noblesville, Indiana, and moved with her family (mother and father and five younger brothers) to Louisiana in 1894.  Four years later she married Louis Charles Bucklin and started her large family soon after.  Louis did not show up in too many photos.  They were married for 29 years at the time of Louis’s death in 1927 at the young age of 54.  Addie lived until just 25 days after I was born.  I do not have any memories of my great grandmother.

Addie’s mother and father are the other two individuals in this photo.  Her mother was born Susan G. Stanbrough in Westfield, Indiana, in 1851. She was the sixth child of twelve children born to a family with strong Quaker roots.  In 1873, at the age of 22, she was married to George Henry Hine who was five years her senior.  He was born in 1846 in Hamilton County also. (Westfield and Noblesville are in Hamilton County.)

This is one of the last photos of George Hine.  He died May 3, 1919.  I don’t know how the photo setup came about.  I’m thinking it must have been Mary’s idea.  She wanted a photo of her with her parents and grandparents.  She was probably a bit peeved with her dad for not wanting to be in the photo.  His parents had already died, so they couldn’t be in the photo.  So she settled for this photo with her mom and her mom’s parents.  I like it.  That’s my great grandmother and my great great grandparents.


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