November 24, 2014

Was It Eleanor Jeane Or Jeane Eleanor Moline?

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Legal Names and Family Names

L-R: Donald, Helen, Joan, Jeane; on floor: Joyce Moline

It’s always been a puzzle to me just what my aunt Jeane’s first name was legally. Was it Eleanor Jeane Moline as it was noted in my Nordgren great grandfather’s bible page, or was it Jeane Eleanor Moline as her son Lee and the rest of the family always thought it to be?

I’m hoping that in a week or so that mystery will be put to rest. Today I ordered her birth certificate from the State of Washington and hopefully they will find the right record (nope, no refunds) and put this issue to rest.  In my opinion, it wasn’t inexpensive to order the birth record at $31.50 a pop, but having documentation that proves a name is vital.

I suppose I have a special affinity for my aunt Jeane since I was named after her (my middle name) because my mom was very close to her. She and my uncle Jim Davis named their first born after my dad’s middle name (Dad was William Gale Yates) and chose Leland Gale.  Jeane and Jim’s daughter was named after my mom and her name is Lynne Joanne Davis.


Next post: A review of a photo to canvas print of my grandma Helen Nordgren Moline by Easy Canvas Prints.

Moline Family Home – Seattle 1942 and 1986

Moline house Seattle1942

 

The Moline House on Queen Anne Hill

There’s no date written on this newspaper clipping, so I will have to estimate it was written some time around 1942.  I surmise that by knowing that my grandparents, “Al” and Eppie (Epstein) Moline, left their previous residence in Bordeaux, Washington when the mill there closed in 1941.

War was imminent, but it may have been a boom time for my grandfather who was a lumber salesman her in the Pacific Northwest.  Lumber was still in high demand for the war machine that was being called into action as World War II began.  PT boats especially, were large consumers of engineered wood. Grandpa had his own lumber company whose name, appropriately enough, was E. B. Moline Lumber Company.

The Marriage Spot

My mom was just eighteen in 1941.  She lived in this house with her parents all during the war years.  On February 5, 1944 my parents were married in this room, in front of this fireplace.

 

You Can Go Home Again

In about 1985 my mother and I made a pilgrimage to this house so she could show me where they had lived.  Miracles of miracles, when we reached the house they owners were having some remodeling done in the upstairs bath (a jacuzzi tub was being hoisted through the bathroom window when we arrived!) and since the house was pretty ‘wide open’ to the workmen anyway, we were allowed to tour a few of the rooms.

Mom was thrilled to be able to show me her room upstairs and tell me what it was like to live there.  I think it especially pleased her to show me the living room and fireplace where she and Dad were wed.  I was totally taken by the sunroom just off the living room, but she let me in on a little backstory: her step mother didn’t like that room much because it would get so hot at certain times of the year.

I can just imagine my grandparents hosting parties and playing bridge in this house.  Eppie was an RN and had worked at Swedish hospital before she married Grandpa.  She had also worked as a private nurse at one time for Mrs. Silverstone whose husband Emmanuel (Manny) was the district manager for the Crescent Spice Company.

1951 Hawaiian Passenger List – Elvin and Lillian Moline

A Seattle Adventure With Mom

 

What Did You Do During The War Mom?

Yates, Davis and Huntley WW II era

 

Esther Bielmeir Boyd

Photo credit – Kitsap Sun

We live in a military community here in the Bremerton-Port Orchard area, and the history of our county is peppered with those who have worked at the Naval Shipyard.  This week one of our “Rosie the Riveters”, Pat King Harms was in the Kitsap Sun article written by Keeley Smith entitled – Calendar honors Port Orchard resident’s wartime shipyard work.

For the past three years The Washington Women in Trades website has offered for sale “The Rosie Legacy” calendar (I believe they still have some older issues) to the public.  This year’s theme is A Good Hand and Mrs. Harms is the June 2011 calendar girl.

The Moline Sisters

We had a “Rosie” in our family too. My aunt Jeane Moline Davis worked at a Tacoma shipyard as a riveter if my memory serves me correctly.  Aunt Jeane is on the far right in the photo from the WWII era above. My mom, Joan worked in a meat market during the war while my dad (her fiance at the time) was overseas.  Pretty sweet job for mom and her parents considering the meat rationing.  Mom and her coworker would deliver meat to one of the old Seattle restaurants, and they would take their own cut of meat along and the restaurant would cook it for them!  It was my aunt Joyce though that probably had the most dangerous job. She was an Army nurse and served in Europe on the front lines.

Women working at the Naval shipyard here is not just a thing of the past. Their numbers might have dwindled after the war was over, but they have grown again since and they now represent a good portion of the workforce.  These are women who get right down there and slog with their male counterparts in jobs like pipefitter, welder and electricians.

Thank you to Pat King Harms for your service to our country!

Do You Have Favorite Family Members?

Minnie Smith age 12

Are there favorite family members you like to research or write about?  Until someone else posed this question, I hadn’t really given it much thought just who I seemed to write about the most.  I think about several of my ancestors quite often though, and wish that I could have met them.

Minnie Smith Yates

I’ve written about my two grandmothers before in Growing Up Grandma-less where I explain how much you lose when you never get to know your grandmother.  I think about my Grandma Minnie Yates quite often, especially now that I have two granddaughters of my own. What would I have learned from her? I wonder…

Donald, Helen, Joan, Jeane and Joyce Moline

My maternal grandmother, Helen Nordgren Moline, had a very short life, but she left us with a mystery.  Well, several mysteries.  She was killed by a hit and run driver as she stood on a corner in Seattle in September of 1929.  At the time, she was already living away from her husband, two adopted children and three biological daughters.

In 1930 Grandpa Moline and the three girls are living with another young woman in the house, presumably the adopted daughter.  But where was the adopted son Donald Moline?  And, why two adopted children when they had three girls? Did Grandpa want a boy so bad to carry on his name that he wanted Grandma to keep having babies till she ‘gave him one’, and when she had my mother, the youngest and another girl, did they decide to adopt?

~~~

There are plenty more people for favorites in Jim’s family too:

Henry Skaggs, one of the “long hunters” who ( I was told) had an unnatural relationship with his granddaughters.  He’s not my favorites because of that, just the long hunter part because he was one of the pioneers who went into Kentucky with men such as Daniel Boone.

My husband Jim is a descendant of Henry Skaggs through Henry’s marriage to Susan Scott. Their daughter Nancy Skaggs married Peter DeSpain. Of that union a son, John DeSpain married (3) Mariah Perkins. John and Mariah’s daughter Mary Elizabeth DeSpain married John W. Whitmore, a Medal of Honor recipient in the Civil War. The DeSpain and Whitmore families settled in Des Moines County near Pleasant Grove, Iowa.  Peter DeSpain and Nancy Skaggs had 19 children.  I know she probably had no choice, but I sure admire that woman!

Mariah Perkins DeSpain

Who are your favorite ancestors? Let me know by leaving a comment, please.

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