Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Wordless Wednesday - Charles Joseph Deller

Digital image of Mable Alice Roark, Charles Joseph Deller, unknown girl, unknown boy,
unknown man, c. 1923, probably SE Kansas, original held by D. & M. Deller, Tulsa, OK. c. 2011

Besides the interesting hairdo and hats, the first thing I noticed was what appeared to be 'sand dunes'.  In fact, they're probably chat piles; remains from the ever present lead mining in SE Kansas, NE Oklahoma, and SW Missouri.  Charles worked in those mines in Picher, Oklahoma for a short time.  You can read more about it in this article about the Legacy of Mining and in an article, "Growing up in the Shadow of the Chat Piles."

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Tombstone Tuesday - Charles Joseph Deller

Digital image of Gravestone for Charles Joseph Deller,
Fairview Cemetery, Coffeyville, KS, A. B. Deller, February 2010
Charles Joseph Deller was born in Kane, McKean County, Pennsylvania on July 21, 1905 to Peter and Carrie Deller.[1]  He died in a drowning accident July 15, 1939 near Ketchum, Oklahoma.[2] This is another one of those instances where the gravestone isn't accurate.

[1] Diller, not named entry, McKean County Births, Return of Births 1904-1905, File Number 29.
[2] Charles J Deller, Ketchum, Mayes, OK death certificate 12310 (15 July 1939).

Monday, February 21, 2011

Amanuensis Monday - The Last Letter from Charles Joseph Deller

Digital image of Family Letter Envelope, July 1939, 
Personal collection of D. & M. Deller, Tulsa, OK, © 2011.
This letter was quite a find for us.  We were cleaning out and sorting through old family papers and pictures, when my husband saw his father's "box" of personal items.  It was once a cigar box, now full of little treasures from the past.  Inside the box was a small envelope, dated July 1939, from Charles Joseph Deller, to his son, Charles Franklin Deller.  At the time, we knew Charles Joseph had died in 1939, but had no other information; only a family story of an accidental drowning.

After a search at Fairview Cemetery in Coffeyville, Kansas, and a talk with the very helpful grounds manager, we narrowed down his death to July 1939, and the cemetery record confirmed that it was a drowning.  I then visited the Coffeyville Public Library and searched microfilm of the local paper, hoping to find an obituary or notice of death; instead I was thrilled to find a full article about the accidental drowning in the Coffeyville Daily Journal.  This article (along with the death certificate I obtained from the Oklahoma Health Department confirmed that he died July 15, 1939, only a few days after the letter was posted to his son.

Digital image of Family Letter,
Personal collection of D. & M. Deller, Tulsa, OK, © 2011.
Both pieces of paper were in the envelope, one part written on the back of a used envelope, and the second on a piece of card.  Both are undated.  They are transcribed exactly as written.
Soney - Inclosed you will find a ticket and $1.00  I want you to come through Tulsa so I can get your Scout things and other nessaties and I will take you on to Graneys from here take the afternoon Buss that gets in here at 12 30 P.M. and I will meet you at Bus Terminal.  From what you have told me about the trip to Yellowstone Park you don't have to much time to get ready. so will be looking for you
Love from

Soney - Thanks for thinking of me. I hope you are enjoying your visit. I would like for you to come back in time to spend some time with me. I have a job on outside of the Cosden Bldg. and am doing it at night. so will have all day to be with you. I have a new boat trailer and outboard moter and I'm sure we can havea good time. I also want to get your Scout layout while I am working.
Let me hear from you soon. You should write to your Graney also.
Lots of Love from Dady.
[written on side of page] 711 S Cheyenne Tulsa

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Wednesday's Child: Joseph C. Deller

Gravestone for Joseph C. Deller, Calvary Cemetery, Coffeyville, Ks.
Digital photo by A.B. Deller, 2 Sep 2010

Peter and Caroline "Carrie" [Miller] Deller had 11 children[1] born between 1893 and 1914.  In 1907 it appears that they had twins, Joseph and Josephine, born in October[2].  In 2009, not knowing exactly where Charles Joseph Deller had died, I ordered a death certificate from the Kansas State Board of Health.  Instead of Charles Joseph Deller, I received a death certificate for Joseph C. Deller (I did find a death certificate for Charles Joseph Deller, in Oklahoma, but that's another story). 

I had assumed Joseph had died before 1920 because he wasn't living with his parents and siblings in Coffeyville, so I hadn't searched census records for him as an individual.  After receiving the death certificate, I looked for him in the 1920 US Federal Census in Parsons (where he died), and he was listed as a patient at the Parsons State Hospital for Epileptics.[3]  The death certificate isn't as complete as I would think a certificate filled out by a hospital should be; it didn't include his date of birth or his parents names (and he was technically still a minor).  He died June 22, 1922 at 6:00am of Status Epilepsy and Exhaustion.[4]

Joseph was buried at Calvary Cemetery in Coffeyville, Kansas on June 24th, 1922.  His death and burial was recorded in the Holy Name Catholic Church parish register by Father J. O'Brien.[5] 

[1], 1910 United States Federal Census, Year: 1910; Census Place: Wetmore, McKean, Pennsylvania; Roll: T624_1374; Page: 8A; Enumeration District: 140; Image: 557.
[3], 1920 United States Federal Census, Year: 1920;Census Place: Parsons Ward 4, Labette, Kansas; Roll: T625_536; Page: 4A; Enumeration District: 157; Image: 1062.
[4] Joseph Deller, Parsons, Labette, Kansas death certificate 50 2693 (22 June 1922).
[5] Holy Name Catholic Church, Coffeyville, Kansas, "1922 Parish Register - Liber Defunctorum Ecclesiae," Page 8, Entry No. 5. 

Back to Work

It's been way over a month since my last post, and high time I was back to work.  Blogging isn't my best skill, but it's definitely an important one in this world of genealogy.  If I didn't know this before, I found it out a week ago, when I was contacted by an unknown, distant relative for the first time.  She had seen the blog, and an entry for our common ancestor, and emailed me.  And now, I'm the recipient of a new genealogy friend. 

She's been researching as well, and found other family members in Pennsylvania who hold a treasure in family photographs. She also has old photos of the family, and has shared some with me.  It's so exciting, seeing a picture of someone I've been researching; in a way, it brings them back to life for me, if only for a few minutes. 

So now, I'll be working on sorting through all that information we collected over the summer (no, I still haven't finished that).  And now, it's been long enough, that when I review a scan, I'm surprised all over again.  Procrastination does have it's (few) rewards.