Innis Family Tree

I want to look at the siblings of Thomas Roberts Innis and see if I can finish off this generation. I understand from Sue that all his siblings are deceased. I really wanted to answer the question about Pauline not being on the 1920 census, so I searched for her first. I found her in 1920 in Leadville, Lake County, Colorado.1 She is in the household of Ed F. and Emma Seabert and listed as a niece. It is interesting to note that Edith is also in the household on the day of the census so she is enumerated twice in 1920; on 2 January in Leadville and again on the 13th in Denver with her mother Loula. Pauline [indexed as Imse] appears on the 1930 census in Denver still living with her aunt Emma Sebrt [sic] who is now a widow.2 I had to do a specific search of the 1930 census for her as Pauline, no last name, born 1908 in Texas, living in Colorado to find her. I have no information on a marriage or her death. I’ll check with Sue and report back.

Blanche as noted in the previous post appears on the 1910 and 1920 census. The first search on Ancestry revealed her California Death Index record under the name Blanche Zitnik.3 My confidence is high as the record shows a father of Innis and mother of Roberts. Her birth date is 4 April 1904 and her death is 3 Sep 1980. In 1930 Blanche is living in the same house as her mother, but she is the wife of Charles P. Hannen and has a son.4 I had noticed there was another family in the house with Loula and when I could not find a Blanche Innis on the records, I went back and looked. Her husband Charles is the last person on the page with Loula and Thomas R., and Blanche is on the following page with her son.

By 1930 Edith Innis has married Ralph E. Cowles and is living in La Junta, Otero County, Colorado with their two children.5 I have not located her death information yet.

There is some interesting material and some confusion for me on the Gattis question. I went back and took a hard look at the World War I Draft Registration for Oscar Lee Gattis. Ancestry has two posted with the same name and birth date, but they appear to be duplicates. The occupation is listed as ‘none’ and next to the name in parenthesis is the word ‘Jail.’ So it looks like Mr. Gattis was not out earning wages in September 1918. If he died it would seem to be between September 1918 and 13 Jan 1920, the date on the 1920 census for Loula.

I find an Oscar L. Gaddis on the 1910 census in Denver as a Lodger in a boarding house and his occupation is engineer on the railroad.6 He is single on this census, so he and Loula must have married between 30 April 1910 (the date on the census from Texas) and (theoretically) before Eddie’s birth on 10 Mar 1913. Eddie’s Find A Grave memorial lists his place of birth as Fort Lupton, Weld County, Colorado – yet another confusing point. I found no census records in 1920 or 1930 for Oscar. I did a variety of searches using alternate spellings and wild cards, but I had no luck. I have listed his death date as before 1920 with no location. I also had no luck finding information on either GenealogyBank or NewspaperArchive.com .

Searching for materials utilizing only online resources in Colorado is not the easiest thing – the amount of information online is simply underwhelming. As is always the case, some counties are great, but Denver is – just – well – not! I am constantly surprised that states won’t put up at least an index of items by year if not by date – especially death records. You can find a Social Security Death listing from three months ago, but not a death certificate index from a state for 50-100 years ago. Bless those states that are putting records up! The lack of records online in Denver is just annoying the heck out of me so I will set it aside for the moment and go work elsewhere for awhile.

1. 1930 U.S. census, Otero County, Colorado, population schedule, La Junta, enumeration district (ED) 11, p. 8B, dwelling 186, family 198, Edith Cowles; digital images, Ancestry (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 10 Jan 2010); citing National Archives and Records Administration microfilm T626, roll 248.
2. 1930 U.S. census, Denver County, Colorado, population schedule, Denver, enumeration district (ED) 63, p. 5B, dwelling 77, family 110, Pauline Innis; digital images, Ancestry (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 10 Jan 2010); citing National Archives and Records Administration microfilm T626, roll 234.
3. “California Death Index, 1940-1997,” database, Ancestry (http://www.Ancestry.com : accessed 10 Jan 2010), Blanche I. Zitnik.
4. 1930 U.S. census, Denver County, Colorado, population schedule, Denver, enumeration district (ED) 241, p. 6B, dwelling 97, family 105, Blanche [Innis] Hannen; digital images, Ancestry (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 10 Jan 2010); citing National Archives and Records Administration microfilm T626, roll 237.
5. 1930 U.S. census, Otero County, Colorado, population schedule, La Junta, enumeration district (ED) 11, p. 8B, dwelling 186, family 198, Edith Cowles; digital images, Ancestry (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 10 Jan 2010); citing National Archives and Records Administration microfilm T626, roll 248.
6. 1910 U.S. census, Denver County, Colorado, population schedule, Denver, enumeration district (ED) 74, p. 16A, dwelling 324, family 339, Oscar L. Gaddis; digital images, Ancestry (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 11 Jan 2010); citing National Archives and Records Administration microfilm T624, roll 114.

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Innis Family Tree

My husband Scotty collects model and toy cars. It is his passion and he meets a lot of people through the hobby. While I’m probably no more interested in toy cars than my husband is in genealogy, we do make an effort to spend time with each other in those pursuits. He pretends to be excited for me when I find documentation, and I respond in-kind when he finds a model he has been looking for. He does enjoy tromping cemeteries with me and I have spent many hours at toy shows with him – both of us understand the “thrill of the hunt.”

Recently, Scotty wanted to go look at the toy car collection of an acquaintance from one of his hobby clubs. He asked me to go along and needing a break from the computer I readily agreed. I had met the gentleman, but had never met his wife; however, most “toy widows” can find common ground and we usually get along quite well. When we arrived, Scotty promptly went off to look at the collection and I sat down in the living room with Sue (not her real name) and began chatting. She asked me about my hobbies and I told her about my work in genealogy and family history.

I asked her about her family (I can’t help it – I’m nosy) and she told me she knew little beyond the names of her grandparents. It’s always a little surprising to me when people don’t know more than that. Family historians usually know the names and dates of several generations – although we aren’t always so good with our living relatives. Sue mentioned that one of her favorite relatives ‘Uncle Eddie” had been placed in an orphanage during the depression because the family was so poor. Don’t ask me why, but I was hooked right then and there. Everyone has eras that interest them more than others and for me it is 1840-1870 and 1910-1930.

I decided that if Sue was willing to let me write about my research, then her family would be my next project on Find Your Dead. I asked her if she was willing and I explained the ground rules. The only thing she asked was that I change her name for privacy purposes and we don’t discuss the living online without their express permission. She immediately brought out the small amount of material she had and I scratched out a rudimentary family tree.

We will be looking at the ancestry of Thomas Roberts Innis and Mary Lou Kelly. The information Sue provided was pretty basic: Thomas Roberts Innis, born 1909, was the son of Thomas Ballard Innis and Loula Roberts. Sue stated that Thomas R. was born in Texas, but thinks his parents were originally from Tennessee. He had three sisters: Blanche, Edith (who married a man named Cowles,) and Pauline. Eddie was his only brother. She thought the girls were older than Thomas, but wasn’t sure. Sue was positive that Eddie was the youngest and she thought the family may have been in Denver when Eddie was placed in the orphanage by his mother and he died in California. Sue also told me that Loula Roberts had a twin named Bula.

Mary Lou Kelly was born about 1910 (possibly in Denver) and was the daughter of Arthur Leroy Kelly and Annie Elizabeth Gruner. Sue stated that Arthur was in the military and died in Denver and is buried in the National Cemetery there. She thought Annie was from Walla Walla, Washington and that Annie’s father was from Germany and her mother’s maiden name was Lambert. Sue had a rather confusing family color coded descendancy chart done by a relative several years ago that didn’t have much beyond the names. Mary Lou had two sisters: Alice and Patricia.

This is the starting point for the Innis and Kelly work that I will do. It is actually not a bad amount of information to start with. There are enough names and places to be able to distinguish between family groups on the census and having the siblings will help make the search easier. Sue has no computer or online access, but has agreed to dig through her papers and pictures, and has also promised to ask her family members for more information about earlier generations.

Part of the fun with this family is that I have never worked in most of the places that Sue mentioned. While I have researched Washington records, I have no experience in Texas, Colorado, or Tennessee. Part of doing Cold Genealogy is to hone our existing skills, but also to learn about areas that we may not normally research. It is after all about – “the thrill of the hunt!”

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