Monday, April 21, 2014

Cemetery Stories: Sears Family....... Part 2

(This story/post continues from my last post.)

The book of extracted Smith Funeral Home records shows the death of Lewis Sidney Sears, and has an entry for his wife, "Mattie E., b. Washington, d/o J.D. Knight and Nancy Zink; d. 19 May 1905, age 34, buried in Lewiston, Idaho."

Checking with friends in the Twin Rivers Genealogy Society in Lewiston, I learned that Mattie E., born 21 May 1871, died May 1905, was cremated and her cremains are with those of Mildred B. Norman in the Masonic Section of Normal Hill Cemetery in Lewiston.

Going back to Fairmount to see if the cemetery office might have any further information, they hauled out some huge, tattered book and were so helpful. I learned two things: the property owner for where Lewis and Little Lew are buried was a Mary L. Sears, but the office had NO record of Little Lew at all! (She's not mentioned in the Smith Funeral Home book either.)

Checking the 1900 census for Spokane, I did not find the widow and child. And they were not in Lewiston in 1900. Trying the 1880 census, I found a Louis Sears, age 23, born New York (both fit), single, railroad laborer, and living in a boarding house in Grantsburg, Burnett, Wisconsin. Is this him?

Louis and Mattie/Mary must have married? But where? And when? He died of typhoid fever on the same day in Spokane that his daughter, "Little Lew," was born, 12 May 1889. The little girl died about 18 months later on 26 December 1890. While there certainly is a tombstone for Little Lew, the cemetery office has no official record of her.

And why did the mother Mattie E. (Little Lew's stone says M.A.) end up being cremated in Lewiston, Idaho?

Guess I'll keep walking and thinking and imagining...................

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