Tombstone Tuesday – December 26, 2017 – John Best

John Best

John Best was the son of Frederick and Elizabeth (Trowbridge) Best. He was born on December 21, 1831, in Bayham, Ontario. Frederick and Elizabeth Best had ten children; John (1831), Dorothy Ann (1833), William Henry(1837), Catherine Matilda (1838), Martha (1840), Casper (1842), Frederick Augusta (1844), Mary Elizabeth (1845), Sarah Jane (1847), Murphy Hardy (1851). In the 1851 Census, John is living in Bayham, Elgin County, Ontario with his parents. He is a twenty-one-year-old laborer.

John married Isabelle Crosset sometime before 1859 when their first son was born. I am unable to find the marriage record.

In the 1861 Census, John and Isabella have one son, George (1859) and they are living next to Isabella’s parents and John’s mother, Elizabeth who appears to be a widow.  John lists his occupation as farmer. In the 1871 Census, they have three children; George F, Sarah(1863), and Frances(1866). In the 1881 Ontario Census, John and Isabella have five children living in their household; George F., Sarah Elizabeth, Francis, Florence (1877), Phebe (1879).  In the 1901 Ontario Census, John is a widower and living with his daughter, Sarah and her husband, James Huffman in Elgin, Ontario.

One hundred and twelve years ago, John died on December 26, 1905, at the age of seventy-four of heart failure in Oxford, Ontario. He is buried in Best Cemetery in Elgin County, Ontario.


John Best is my first cousin 5X removed.

Rest in peace, John,

Love, Jan

Tombstone Tuesday – December 19, 2017 – Aaron Patterson


Some believe that Aaron Patterson was born in Ireland and others state that he was born in Cumberland County, New Jersey on January 14, 1762. There is no documented proof for either of these theories. Aaron was married five times. His first wife was Mary Boone of New Jersey. They married in 1787 and had nine children before Mary died in 1806.  Their children were; John, William, Uriah, Aaron, Obadiah, Jesse, Rachel, Hannah, Mary. Aaron purchased 450 acres of land in Cumberland County, New Jersey. In the 1800 Census, Aaron is living in Cumberland County and pays his taxes in 1803. Aaron sells his land in 1805 or 1806 and relocates to Elk Township, Lycoming County, Pennsylvania. Mary dies either just before or just after the move to Pennsylvania.

By 1808, Aaron has moved to Ohio. He is listed as one of the earliest settlers in Tuscarawas County, Ohio. On October 20, 1811,  he married the widow of John Robart, Amelia (Millie) English Robart. Amelia has seven children from her first marriage who are all underage bringing the total children living in this household to sixteen. John and Amelia’s children were; Rachel(1799), Hannah(1801), Phebe(1804), James English(1804), John(1806), Jesse William(1807), Amelia(1807). Amelia English Robart Patterson died in April of 1823. I have not determined that Aaron and Amelia had any children of their own.

After Amelia died,  Aaron marries his third wife, Catherine in 1827. In 1833, Aaron marries his fourth wife Elizabeth Ruby. Aaron marries his fifth wife Margaret Sleater on September 6, 1837.

Aaron Patterson died on December 19, 1842 and was buried in Dundee Wayne Cemetery in Tuscarawas County, Ohio.DundeeCemetery1

Aaron Patterson is the second husband of my 5X Great Grandmother, Amelia (Millie) English Robart Patterson.

Rest in Peace, Aaron!

Love, Jan

Tombstone Tuesday – December 12, 2017 – David Overley


David Overly was the son of Thomas and Emeline Overly born on September 6, 1854. Thomas and Emeline had eleven children: Daniel (1836), Martin(1837), Isaac(1838), Matilda(1839), Mary Ann(1842), Samuel(1844), Thomas(1846), Didimus, David(1854), William(1858), George(1860). David and all of his older siblings were born in Ohio according to an early 1860 and 1870 census. Yet the death certificate states that he was born in Indiana. The two younger brothers were born in Nine Mile, Indiana.

David married Elizabeth Rowe on November 30, 1873 in Elkhart, Indiana.  David and Elizabeth had ten children between 1873 and 1896 when she died. They were; Fannie(1877), Harriet (1878), William (1879) , Martin(1881), Emma (1883), Clara (1886) Roy(1890), Ada(1893), Grace(1894), Zella (1896).

David and Elizabeth are found in Sand Lake, in Kent County, Michigan in the 1880 Federal Census with the first three children. He is 26 years old and lists his occupation as laborer and that he was employed for 10 months. The census record states that he was born in Indiana. In the 1894 and 1901 Kent County marriage records for Harriet and William Overly,  two of the older children, the records indicate that their mothers’ names was Elizabeth Rowe. Elizabeth Rowe Overly died on October 21, 1896, three days after the birth of her tenth child, Zella.

David married Elizabeth (Ball) Hency in Spencer, Kent County, Michigan on November 7, 1897 and she had two daughters from her previous marriage; Elsie and Ada Hency. In the 1900 Federal Census, David and his second wife, Elizabeth, have six daughters living with them, Emma, Clara, and Ada are Elizabeth Rowe’s daughters and Clara and Elsie Hency are Elizabeth Ball Hancy’s daughters and Fern is the one-year-old daughter of David and his second wife.  David lists his occupation as a farmer. The 1910 Federal Census states that this marriage is the second marriage for both David and Elizabeth. The children listed are Elsie Hency, Ada Hency, Fern Overly, Zelma Overly. In the 1920 Federal Census, David and Elizabeth are found in Berrien Springs, Berrien County, Michigan.


David A Overley died on December 12, 1927 according to his death Certificate. His death was listed as a Cerebral Hemorrhage. He is buried in East Nelson Cemetery near Sand Lake, Michigan on December 14, 1927.


This is the original Overley Tombstone where his first wife, Elizabeth, and three children are buried. The East Nelson Cemetery is also known as Cedar Springs is located in Kent County, Michigan.

East NelsonCemetery

David Overly/ Overley is my first cousin 4X removed. This was a challenging research project in light of the fact that David married two women named Elizabeth and on the marriage licenses for his children three surnames, two maiden names and one married name were used making it look like he had married three Elizabeths’.  And somewhere along the way, the Overly spelling was changed from Overly to Overley.

Rest in peace. David.

Love Jan

Tombstone Tuesday – December 5, 2017 – Glenn E Goshorn


Glenn Estel Goshorn was born on June 30, 1912 in Antwerp, Ohio the son of Clyde and Ada (Crawford) Goshorn. Glenn married Beryl F Wilson on March 4, 1933, in Fort Wayne, Indiana. They had two children; Beryl Stella (1933) and James W(1935). By the 1940 Federal Census, Glenn and Beryl are divorced and she is living with the two children with her mother, Abbie Wilson.

In the 1939 Fort Wayne Directory, I find Glenn E. Goshorn and Melba (Jackson) Goshorn listed. Glenn’s occupation is listed as Insurance Agent in 1939 and Melba is a housewife. There is a birth record for June 25, 1937, for Glenn and Melba’s first daughter Sandra Lee Goshorn. They had four daughters; Sandra(1937), Barbara, Catherine, Cynthia.

In the 1942 Fort Wayne directory, Glenn lists his occupation as a lathe operator for General Electric. From the remaining directories that I find, it appears that he was a factory worker for the remainder of his career.

Melba died on June 10, 1981. Glenn married Evelyn Zella Northrup on January 31, 1987.

Glenn E Goshorn died twenty years ago today at Lutheran Hospital in Fort Wayne, Indiana, on December 5, 1997. It states on the death certificate that he was widowed. Evelyn must have died. Glenn Goshorn-DeathCertGlenn is buried in Covington Memorial Gardens in Fort Wayne, Indiana with Melba. Covington

Rest in Peace, Glenn


Love, Jan

Tombstone Tuesday – November 28, 2017 – Emanuel C Crites

Emanuel Crites -2

Emanuel Crites was the son of William and Mary Ann (Forney) Crites born in Dover, Ohio on November 12, 1868. William and Mary Ann Cites had ten children; Daniel (1864), Joseph(1856), Jesse(1867), Emanual (1870), Viola (1872), Willas (1873- 1874), Pearl (1875),Ellsworth (1877), Alpha (1879), Ruby (1882).

In the 1880 Federal Census, Emanuel is listed as an eleven-year-old son living with William and Mary. He attends school and assists on the farm. Emanuel married Mary Ann Klein on March 24, 1895, in Tuscarawas County, Ohio. In the 1900 Federal Census, Emanual and Mary have two daughters; Leleah is four and Lurtha is two years old. Emanuel lists his occupations as a teamster in the 1990 Census. By the time of the 1910 Federal Census, Emanuel has gone back to farming. In the 1920 Federal Census, Emanuel is a working in a Sheet Mill as a laborer. They now have three daughters; Lelah (1896), Lurtha May (1897), Ethel Marie (1910). They also have two people living with them as boarders. John Kannan is a roller in the Sheet Mill. Catherine Ripple is 44 and has no employment. By the 1930 Federal Census, Emanuel is working in a Limber Company as a Laborer. He is 61 years old. Ethel Marie is nineteen years old and is working in a Dry Cleaners as a presser. At the age of 69, Emanuel in the 1940 Federal Census, has two of his daughters and their husbands living with them. They are Elmer and Lutha McClafferty and Marion and Ethel Weymouth. Emanuel is no longer working. Both  Lutha and Ethel are working in the Dry Cleaning plant. Elmer is a fireman at a Chemical Plant and Marion is an Electrician who owns his own business.

Emanuel C. Crites died on November 28, 1949, sixty-eight years ago today. His final resting place is Dover Burial Park in Dover, Ohio.


Emanuel is my first cousin 4X removed. Rest in Peace, Emanuel!

Love, Jan

Tombstone Tuesday – November 21, 2017 – Oella Denney Smith


Oella Denney was the daughter of Walter Denney and Mary Nancy Young born in Brooke, Virginia on May 12, 1845. Walter and Mary (Young) Denney had seven children; Jane Elizabeth (1843), Oella (1845), Rolandis (1848), Francis(1850), Mary Agnes(1852), Clara Virginia(1855), Walter(1859). All of the Children except Walter were born in Brooke, Virginia, he was born in Allen County, Indiana.

Oella Denney married James W Smith on Mar 18, 1869. They had six children; William Frampton (1869), Alvin Oliver (1873), Della (1874), Dora Belle (1876), Etta Clare (1882), Francis Willard (1887).

In the 1870 Federal Census, a newly married James and Oella are living near James’s mother, Susan(Susannah Overly) Smith, in Lafayette Township, Allen County, Indiana. She is a widow with several young children. James and Oella have James’ brother Charles living with them and their own five-month-old son William. In the 1880 Census, Oella and James live in Union Township, Wells County, Indiana and by now they have four children; William, Alvin, Della, and Dora. Oella and James are living in Zanesville during the 1900 Federal Census. They have three children remaining at home. James W lists farming as his occupations and so does a twenty-eight-year-old William Frampton and a twelve-year-old,  Francis. Etta Clare who is eighteen-years-old lives with them also. In the 1910 Federal Census, Oella and James are in Union Township, Wells County, Indiana alone but near their son’s Alvin and William and their families.

James W Smith Family

This photo is of the James W. and Oella Denney Smith family taken likely between 1908 and 1909 based on the people in this photo and the children not yet born.

Row one children seated: James Frank Wert, Lulu Etta Wert, Alvin Sparks, Everett Smith, Virgil Sparks, Talmage Sparks, Nora Sparks, a sister of Arena May Straley Smith.

Row Two Adults and Children Seated: Ruth Jackson, Dora Belle Smith Jackson, Cora Crites Smith holding Frederick James Smith, James W Smith, Oella Smith, Dessie Heckman Smith holding Virgil Smith.

Row three Standing: William H. Jackson, Alvin Smith, William Sparks, Della Smith Sparks, Oscar Jackson standing in from of Della, Homer Wert, William Frampton Smith, Francis Smith and Arena May Straley Smith.

I have wondered if this was the baptism of Federick James Smith but I can not be certain. His family is the owner of the original photo.

Ninety-two years ago, Oella died at the age of 80 years old. Oella is my 2 times Great Grandmother. She is buried in the Uniontown Cemetery next to her husband James W. Smith according to her Death Certificate. There is no tombstone to be found.


Rest in peace, Oella!


Love, Jan

Tombstone Tuesday – November 14, 2017- Rosemary Isabel Forbes Kerry


Rosemary Isabel Forbes was born on October 27, 1913, to James Grant Forbes and Margaret Tyndal Winthrop in Paris, France. James and Margaret Forbes had eleven children; James Grant Jr. (1906), John W. (1908), Griselda (1910), Angela (1912), Rosemary Isabel (1913), Eileen (1916), Monica (1916), Alastair (1918) , Ian (1920), Iris (1922), Fiona(1924). The first three children were born in America and the remaining children were born in France at the Forbes Estate just outside of Paris.

Rosemary lived in Boston and as a young adult, she sailed frequently across the Atlantic to visit her parents in Paris France, sailing in and out of Liverpool, England or Lisbon,  Portugal. She was a nurse for the Red Cross during in WWII and later a Social Activist.

Rosemary married Richard John Kerry in Montgomery, Alabama on February 8, 1941, but a newspaper clipping from England indicated that she quietly married Richard Kerry at the Winthrop Estate in Luray, South Carolina. She met Richard when he took a sculpture class at the resort of Saint-Briac, where the Forbes had built their family estate. They settled in Boston,  Massachusetts, where they had four children; Margaret (Peggy, 1941), John (1943), Diana (1947), Cameron (1950).

Rosemary died on November 14, 2002, in Manchester, Massachusetts. Rosemary was cremated at the Mount Auburn Cemetery in Cambridge Massachusetts but the location where her remains are interned has been kept private by the family.

Rest in Peace Rosemary!

Love, Jan

Note: I have found that I am a cousin to Senator John Kerry and his family.  We are related through the Dudley lines of his family and mine. This discovery was made by using an iPhone app called “We’re Related”. The app has allowed me to break through many brick walls in the last twelve months