Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Chasing Down "Aunt Bertha"

On the back of the postcard style picture is written in my Grandmother Delphia's hand: "Mother (Tillie Means) & Aunt Bertha" (Matilda, standing with her hand on Bertha's shoulder). To me it seemed obvious they were sisters, but I couldn't find Bertha listed in my great-grandmother Matilda's obituary, nor her sister Becky's (Rebecca). I was stumped for about three days.

I actually thought she might have been married to a Staggs. Grandma had a cousin, Mort, and I *knew* his mother and grandma Delphia were cousins. But when I looked up Mort's parents his father was James and his mother was Maggie. To make a long story short, I just needed to go back one more generation to James Staggs parents: William J. Stagg(s) and Bertha L. Lippincott. I also found the Lippincott's in the 1870 census where Bertha is listed as 'Berthena', age 10. Great-grandma Matilda (Tillie) was 7 and Rebecca (Becky) was 12. Older siblings were Lydia, 13, Sarah, 15 and Thomas, 18. All were born in Iowa.

This is a picture of Sarah. Her blouse looks similar to the ones Tillie and Bertha have on in their photo.

This is an earlier picture of Sarah on which Grandma had written: "Aunt Sarah and 'Old Crab' Conally". That still makes me chuckle. I still haven't worked out how she was married to Caleb Conally first and then married to Nathan Bozarth (see my post, "Old Crab Conally" October 21, 2012), but Aunt Sarah died March 6, 1935 in Niangua, MO as did Nathan C. in 1897.

My great-grandmother, Matilda (Tillie) Lippincott Means with her husband, George Robert Means are buried in the Mt. Etna Cemetery (Adams Co. Iowa) as is her sister, Lydia Jane Lippincott Elliot. Lydia was born November 25, 1857 and died May 12, 1897. The Find A Grave site does not give a spouse name nor any children's names. It only says: "She died at her home in Mt. Etna, May 12. The cause of her death was a tumor." Rebecca (Becky) Lippincott Earll died in July 1929 and is buried in Gothenburg, Dawson County, Nebraska as is her son, Ami Lippincott.

Rebecca Lippincott Earll

That accounts for the daughters of David and Catherine Lippincott, now if I can just find more about Thomas W. whom I believe lived somewhere in Missouri. Also, tomorrow, more about Aunt Bertha's son, James A. Staggs, a Des Moines policeman killed while on duty.

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