Ok, so late again….
In the 52 Ancestor’s challenge it is Week 16 – Live Long. The suggestion: Time to feature a long-lived ancestor. Any centenarians in the family?
Well, actually, no. Not on my side of the family. Fortunately my kids have my husband’s side too, so they have a chance! On my side, there are very few that were nonagenarians whether direct ancestor or collateral line!
One of the nonagenerians, Harriet Vitty, I already wrote about back in Week 4. The other in my direct line is Alice McGlynn.
Alice is my great-grandmother. She married Frederick McGlynn and her maiden name was Alice Parson or Parsons. Except its not.
This is my twisty side of the tree- Family lore was that there was always something with the name, maybe it should have been Parsons, and that lore has its basis in truth.
The first piece of evidence I found to back up the family story was Alice’s social security application, filed in 1937. Alice lists her name as Alice MacGlynn McGlynn. (instructions to married women were to write the name as maiden first name, maiden last name, married last name) It seemed more than a little strange that both her maiden and married names were variations of the same. Her father was listed as Thomas (no middle name) MacGlynn and her mother she listed as Unknown.
Next I obtained a copy of Alice and Frederick’s marriage certificate from 1896. On this certificate record, Alice McGlynn, daughter of Thomas McGlynn and Alice Wetherhead married Frederick Parsons. Clearly this is the same Alice, but shouldn’t her married name have been Parsons in the SS-5? Perhaps here was where the “something with the name” comes in- maybe it was switched on the marriage certicate?
It appears that in all census records the family is found in- 1900-1940 US, 1905-1925 NYS, they are using the last name McGlynn.
Alice was born in England so I looked for records there. I found a marriage record for her parents-but no obvious birth or baptism. There was a female McClean birth registered in the first quarter 1880 in the district of Hampstead. This is not obvious for Alice, but warrants more investigation.
In the UK Census for 1881 and 1891, the family of Thomas and Alice (parents to Alice) are found. In both of these census, the family does not list a child named Alice, but rather a girl Fanny of the correct age. Although I have found no proof in documents, family information had also provided Alice’s name as Alice Frances. Fanny is a nickname for Frances, and possibly used as there were 2 Alice McGlynn’s in the household- ” and daughter. Here I have likely found my great-grandmother- Alice Parsons, under the names Fanny McLean, Fanny McGlynn!
Family stories provide that Alice was a young girl/teen when she arrived alone in the United States. Her family had remained in England. An immigration record for Fanny McGlynn has been found from England to Canada on passenger lists from 1894. She had immigrated with other children from England bound for Niagara-On-The-Lake, a home for indigent and orphaned children. Again further information is needed to confirm that this Fanny is my Alice. If it is she, questions surround how she left Canada and came to be in Canandaigua, New York to be married there in 1896.
In 1897 Alice and Frederick had their first child, W Frederick in Canandaigua, NY. It appears that the family were Parsons’ at the time, the child was named W Frederick Parsons, father was Frederick Parsons, mother Alice McGlynn. Printed above the names are also known as William Frederick McGlynn”, and “also known as Fred McGlynn”. These appear to be in a different handwriting. The situation is the same with their second child Maurice Neally Parsons, aka Maurice Nealy McGlynn, born in Palmyra, NY.
My grandfather, John, was the 3rd child born to them and his birth certificate indicates his mother was Allice Parsons, his father Fred McGlynn. John was born in 1900 at Rochester, NY. The children after him were also born with the last name McGlynn. It appears that from the time they came to Rochester, Fred and Alice used the name McGlynn.
Alice and Fred remained McGlynn from that point on. Alice died at the age of 91 in Rochester, New York. Her death certificate states her father’s last name was McGlynn.
So the lore that there was something with the name was true. But the question remains: Why?