Hutcheson Case Study

My next project will be a case study. I did a quick preview of census and online sources and discovered that by just getting back one generation, one finds links to some previous research. However, what do you do when you only know a few things about an ancestor? And even worse, what if what do you find is confusing? This case study will focus on how to get back just one crucial generation.

I randomly chose Oril O. Hutcheson as I surfed through death certificates which are available online on the Arizona Department of Health Services website. I was looking up death certificates for a Hoyt project (which will be next) and incremented the numbers to read the certificates and other paperwork such as amendments which were interfiled.

Oril’s death certificate caught my eye. He committed suicide — and while it is a shameful and avoided subject, I find that there is always an untold story. The several suicides in my family tree have meant that I needed to dig deep enough to figure out what was causing stress in that person’s life. Additionally, Oril worked for Southern Pacific Railroad. My husband is a “train guy” and we have lots of “Espee” (SP) model trains.

The basics:*
Oril O. Hucheson was born 22 Jul 1879 in Iowa. His father was Thomas Hutcheson and the informant did not know where Thomas was born. Oril’s mother’s name and place of birth were unknown. He was married and the informant was Etta Mae Hutcheson. He died 18 Feb 1949 in Tucson, Pima, Arizona, and was buried in the Masonic section of Evergreen Cemetery. He was 69 years, 8 months, and 22 days old. His death was caused by a gunshot wound to the head and was attributed to suicide which occurred at home at 11am with death pronounced at 2pm. He was employed as a brakeman for So. Pac. R.R. and his social security number was 700-12-3070. He had lived in Tucson, Arizona, for 37 years.

*Arizona Department of Health Services, death certificate no. 1027 (1949), Oril O. Hutcheson; digital image, Arizona Genealogy Death Certificates ( : accessed 29 Aug 2010).


Scholefield Family Tree

Two years ago, to the day, I began this project. Where possible using online resources I have traced the family back and branched out to include siblings and the birth dates of their children. I am ready to call this one as done as I am going to get it at this point. Another project coming soon!

Compiled Report

This is a report of findings as I have entered them. Some bits from the blog may not have made it into this report and if you want to understand the steps taken to produce this work, the blog is invaluable.

The Scholefield Project


Scholefield Family Tree

I’ve been focusing on using the names from the lawsuit to identify familial connections. So far, I have placed all the of the Moores and have only a few names left over. The names that don’t fit are: William D. Lowerre and Ann D. Lowerre his wife, William Kemble, Frederick S. Stalknecht, and Peter Gilsey. There are several reasons that these people were named. Ann and the wives of William, Frederick, and Peter could have been Moores. I’ve not yet found marriage records to prove that. Or they could have been lawyers representing family members. Maybe they were friends of the family who witnessed documents which the plaintiffs were calling into question.

The Moore Lawsuit

This shows the relationship between the Moore’s named in the lawsuit. Michael and his wife Maria were suing his brother, his cousins, and his second cousins when their parents were dead.
Moore Lawsuit


Scholefield Family Tree

When attempting to verify the hypothesis that Michael Moore who married Jane Dunlap and Jacob Moore who married Ann Armour were brothers, I’ve run across one of the hurdles that genealogists have to consider: Where does one take that leap in order to state that a person with different spellings of a name are actually the same person?

For example: Could Hannah and Annatje be the same person?

I previously located information that Michael Moore who married Jane Dunlap was born in 1753.1

A search for him at turns up a report that he was christened on 14 Mar 1753 and his parents were Michel Moore and Annatje Deaij.2

An internet search using this alternate spelling of Michael and the name Annatje turns up a similar result at Olive Tree Genealogy. It provides a bit more information: Date: 1753 Mar 14; Parents: Michel Moore, Annatje Deay; Child: Michel; Witnesses: Francis Moore, Hester Deay, h.v. [wife of] Van Joseph Forbes.3

So, I have a Michael who is the son of Michel and Annatje and a Jacob who is the son of Micheal and Hannah. The two were born six years apart, so I know I am not dealing with a son. Could there be two Micheals of the same generation? Sure, there could be. They could be cousins. But why would children of Michael (Jr) and Jacob be named together in a lawsuit that does not yet appear to go back an additional generation if they weren’t siblings?

I know that I can combine Annatje and Hannah (and again, if I were doing offline research, I’d need to check other resources just in case). I can do this because the Dutch name Annatje was Americanized to Hannah. If you want to check this out for yourself, do a web search for the two names and you will find all sorts of references that show the name Hannah in parentheses or quotation marks next to the Dutch name. If you ever see two names and wonder if they could be nicknames, pet names, or alternate names, try both in a search to see what you find. If they never appear next to each other, then they likely aren’t used in the way that you hoped. Sometimes your search will even turn up a website that lists associated names and you can consider it a slam dunk.

1. See post dated 31 Jul 2010.
2. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints [LDS], “International Genealogical Index,” database, FamilySearch ( : accessed 8 Aug 2010), North America Region, entry for Michael Moore, christened 14 Mar 1753, New York, New York, New York; citing FHL microfilm 0,822,730 (Patron ordinance submission sheets, 1969-1991), batch no. 7309337.
3. Lorine McGinnis Schulze, The Olive Tree Genealogy ( : accessed 8 Aug 2010), New Amsterdam (New York City) New York Reformed Dutch Church Baptisms, entry for Michel Moore, baptized 14 Mar 1753; citing original transcriptions by Ted Brassard.


Scholefield Family Tree

Ok — I don’t have to do the explaining, but apparently Archibald Moore did. And, this is a reminder try odd search strings. A Google search for “‘Archibald Dunlap Moore’ Ann” turned up this result:

In the matter of the petition of Catharine McGowan.
In September, 1856, Judge Whiting issued a writ of habeas corpus directing D. Tilden Brown, esq., Superintendent and Physician of the Bloomingdale Lunatic Asylum, to produce Ann Moore, the wife of Archibald Dunlap Moore, and sister of the relator. The petition set forth that Mrs. Moore was not insane, but that she was illegally deprived of her liberty.
The writ was returnable Oct. 10 of that year. The return set forth that the lady was placed in the Asylum on the certificate two physicians that she was of unsound mind.
The return was traversed and the matter referred to Lewis H.[?] Reed, esq., who reported about a month ago that Mrs. Moore was insane. On Monday a motion was made to discharge her on the ground that she is of sound mind. She has been confined for twelve years.1

This makes me come up with an additional “story” to add to the possibilities I explored before.2 I think that the 1850 census I found for the two Anns was actually supposed to have been Archibald (Arch) and Ann his lunatic wife. It appears that he may have moved her in and out of institutions (or that she was in an institution but listed at home in 1850) and then he went off with the woman, possibly as a servant or nurse, who had been living in his home. Since Ann was listed as his wife in both the lawsuit and the proceedings about his wife’s insanity, it would seem that he did not divorce her. Instead he picked Catherine up and moved to Pennsylvania to start a new life. He and Catherine had children together, but none of the websites which mention them point to a specific date of marriage — just a year when they might have been married based on the birth of their first child. Suspicious?

Archibald died in 1861 and his will was probated.3 If I were spending money on this project (and if this were my family), I would want to locate that will at the Family History Library in Salt Lake City or in a New York repository.

1. “Law Intelligence,” New York Daily Tribune, 10 Nov 1857, p. 7, col. 6; digital images, Fulton History ( : accessed 5 Aug 2010); New York NY Tribune 1857 Oct – Dec Grayscale – 0280.pdf.
2. See post dated 31 Jul 2010.
3. “Surrogate’s Court,” New York Times, 21 Dec 1861, p. 8, col. 4; digital images, Fulton History ( : accessed 5 Aug 2010); New York NY Times 1861 Dec – 1862 Feb Grayscale (174).pdf.