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Tuesday, 9.13.05:  Distant Cousins

Family History. In the process of putting together a Price-Newham family tree, I began looking for aunts, uncles, and long-lost cousins. The genealogy gurus say that you shouldn't just pay attention to your direct line of ancestors, that there are insights to be gained by looking wider.

I began plotting my family tree in Visio, then dug deeper into the data at What's frustrating is that women often disappear because their surnames change. There oughta be a law -- the census should always index a woman's maiden name as well as her married name. Even the English marriage register is annoying -- it says when someone got married but not who they got married to. What's up with that? But I finally figured out that, if you burrow into the right file, the two spouses will be listed next to each other in the master ledger. This helped.

Here's what I found: my grandfather Walter had at least six first cousins -- none on the Price side.

The Prices were dying out till Sarah and Bill had 6 sons. Walt's great aunt Mary Price did not marry. His great uncle Phil Price had one daughter, Ada. She married Tom Holds in 1894, but was back living with her widowed dad in 1901, without children.

Walt's mother Sarah Newham Price had 4 nieces and 2 nephews. Edith Newham (from her brother Sam), Frances E Newham (from her brother Charles) and Sara Jane, Reginald F, and Frances Nelly Ardin (from her sister Mary Jane). The mystery remains the nephew Henry Edward Newham -- he shows up as an infant at his grandparents house (in the 1891 census) and was apparently raised by them. My suspicion is that Mary Jane gave birth to Henry when she was still single, at the age of 25. Perhaps she never admitted he was her son, since his birth was registered in the next county over. At the age of 31 she got married to a nearby blacksmith, Walter Ardin, and they went on to have at least 3 children (according to the last available census of 1901).

Price-Newham family tree

Kitchen. Work completed on Monday, Day 7 -- oak floor. I promise, promise, promise to keep this beautiful floor clean at all times. Promise!





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