Third Great-Uncle Theodore W. White

Theodore W. White was the youngest child of Job and Elizabeth White, born in 1860 in Yarmouth, Nova Scotia. He, too, immigrated to the United States in 1869. Theodore became a worker in the shoe making industry in Lynn.

According to family legend, as previously written, Theodore became quite sick about 1886 when he and his father Job traveled to Martin County, Florida to see if the warmer weather would improve his health. After his father’s sudden death in Florida, Theodore returned to Lynn around 1889 and his mother Elizabeth continued to live with him.

Theodore White in 1893 Lynn City Directory.  Author's Collection.

Theodore White in 1893 Lynn City Directory. Author’s Collection.

On August 22, 1890, Theodore married Sophronia Bailey. They went on to have three children:

  • Glenn T., born July 1891
  • Gladys May, born May 19, 1895
  • Kenneth Douglas, born January 13, 1898

Sadly, the year Kenneth was born, Theodore passed away on November 9 of cardiac and renal disease, just like his brother Milton. Sophronia and the children moved in with her widowed mother Laura and brother Edwin. Sophronia never remarried and died sometime after 1924.

Glenn married Viola Slaney on Dec. 29, 1912 in Revere, MA. They do not appear to have had children. Glenn died in October 1924 and was buried in Pine Grove Cemetery.

Gladys married Leroy Matthews in 1921; she died on March 17, 1982 and he on September 24, 1974. Both are buried in Waterside Cemetery in Marblehead, MA. Gladys seems to be Theodore’s only child who gave him descendants; on May 1, 1922, she and Leroy had a daughter, Gwenna, who in turn married and had children. Gwenna died on April 11, 2011 and is also buried in Waterside Cemetery.

I show no record of Kenneth marrying. Somehow he made his way out to San Bernardino, CA and died there in February 1975.

* * *

This is the end of the Colomy/White story (until further research turns up something new and cool). Soon we’ll be turning our attention to other branches of my family. Stay tuned!

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Third Great-Aunt Frances A. (“Fanny”) White: Getting Younger

Frances A. White, commonly called Fanny (or Fannie), was born, I believe, in 1846 in Yarmouth, Nova Scotia. She was the oldest daughter and fourth child of Job R. and Elizabeth Phoebe White.

Fanny seems to be the first of her family to immigrate to the United States, though I’m not sure of those circumstances. On July 8, 1868 she married Harmon S. Burns in Lynn, Massachusetts at the age of 22. Harmon S. Burns was an older widower who was born in Vermont around 1828. Like so many people in Lynn, he worked in the shoemaking industry. Their marriage being the first record where I find Fanny’s name and age, I have calculated her birth year to be approximately 1846. As time went on, as we shall see, Fanny seemed to shave a few years off her age!

The 1870 Census shows Fanny and Harmon living in Lynn with his adult son Alfred and her sister Jennie, as well as border Lizzie Clark. Fanny had not aged at all in two years, as her age here was 22.

The 1870s proved to be a difficult time for the Burns. Three children were born and later died during this decade:

  • Roseanna Blanche, born July 1, 1871; died August 8, 1878 of scarlet fever
  • Estella Elizabeth, born March 4, 1874; died December 8, 1874 of spinal meningitis
  • Harmon S., Jr., born February 3, 1876; died August 23, 1878 of scarlet fever

Fanny only appears to have aged 10 years by the 1880 Census, where she and Harmon are living along at 27 Cedar Hill Avenue in Lynn. However, they were not alone for long. On May 2, 1882, daughter Lena M. was born (the register of births shows her as unnamed). On May 6, 1884, daughter Elsie F. was born. I’m sure these daughters brought their parents much joy in the aftermath of their siblings’ deaths.

By 1900, the Burns family and lodger Everett Kent were living at 38 Cedar Hill Avenue. (Fanny aged only 15 years since 1880!) They moved there around 1889 and if my calculations are correct, they would have been next door neighbors to Fanny’s sister Jennie and the Colomy family during Bertha’s trouble with Percy St. Clair.

The next few years brought many changes for the family. On March 11, 1901, Harmon died of gangrene. He was buried at Pine Grove Cemetery at Public Lot-4, Section-22. On November 6, 1902, Lena died of tuberculosis. She, too, was buried at Pine Grove at Moss Path, Lot-692. The following year on January 3, Elsie had married James L. McNichol. That marriage did not last, as they were no longer together as of 1910. And on August 29, 1908 at the ripe old age of 44 (losing three years over the past eight), Fanny married 40-year-old divorced Edward H. Ives.

By the 1910 Census, Edward, Fanny and Elsie moved to 30 Dana Street in neighboring Revere (where Fanny did gain the necessary two years to become “46”). Later that year, on October 26, Elsie married William Younie in Boston. They eventually had a daughter (Bernice Elsie) and a son (William, Jr.). Sadly on February 25, 1917, Elsie died of a cerebral hemorrhage and was buried in Pine Grove (location unknown at this time). Once again, Fanny buried one of her children, this being her last. To add insult to injury, Edward died of a cardiac lesion that year on October 7.

I can’t be 100% sure that I have found Fanny in the 1920 Census. There is only one “Fannie A. Burns” in Massachusetts, who was an inmate in the Westborough State Hospital (a mental hospital). She was listed as married and age 61. Her parent information is not correct, but perhaps whoever put Fanny there did not give the hospital that information. In any case, I have to wonder if Fanny may have been committed there in light of all the tragedies she faced in her lifetime.

Fanny herself lived five more years, passing away in April 1925. Although I am not sure of where Edward Ives was buried, I do know that Fanny is buried next to her daughter Lena in Pine Grove Cemetery. According to Find a Grave, her age at death is 66 years old, which does line up with the “Fannie” in the 1920 Census. So how old was she at death, really? I say she was probably 78 years old.