George Morton Redding and Mary Adelaide (aka Addie) Coleman are collateral ancestors of mine, but George and Addie’s family make up the largest branch of the descendants of William and Sarah Moriah (Crouse) Coleman so it is important to include their story.
George Redding was born on 12 March 1848 in Calais, Maine, if his age at death, given as 51 years, 8 months and 0 days is correct. He was the son of Otis A. Redding and Emaline Getchell. His occupation was that of carpenter.
Mary Adelaide, or Addie, Coleman, was the firstborn child of William Coleman and Sarah Moriah Crouse, arriving ten months after their wedding, on 2 December 1855. Addie was also born in Calais.
George and Addie married in Calais on 5 November 1878. The 1880 census is the only census in which this married couple appears. They were living with Addie’s grandparents, Thomas and Mary Coleman, and their first child, Howard, aged one year.
George was enumerated as a farm laborer. He and Addie likely helped maintain the small farm for her elderly grandparents.
Thomas Coleman died in 1888 and Mary followed in 1889 so by 1890, George and Addie were likely in a household of their own. In any event, they had a growing family, as six of their eight children had been born.
However, the 1890’s were an extremely sad time for this young Redding family. On 17 October 1890, their third child, Chester, died at the age of 8 years old. Addie gave birth to two more children, bringing the total to eight. Four short months after giving birth to her last child, Addie died on 16 January 1895 in Calais.
She was buried in Calais Cemetery, next to two siblings who had died young.
Addie Coleman Redding Gravestone
George was left with six young children to raise on his own, but his health was declining even though he was a young man of 42 in 1890. Times got even tougher as George died of chronic heart disease with kidney complications on 12 November 1899.
George and Addie Redding left 7 orphaned children and one who predeceased them, all born in Calais:
- Howard Jones, born 1 April 1879; died 24 April 1955, Calais, ME; married Jessie Fleming
- Frank Earl, born 12 May 1881; died 16 June 1948, possibly in Pembroke, ME, where he lived in 1940; married (1) Belle Perkins (2) Essie Pearl Taylor
- Chester A., born about 1882; died 17 October 1890, Calais, Me
- Ethel Emaline, born 16 October 1884; died 16 November 1974, Lynn, Essex, MA; married Edward Elnathan McDormand
- Sarah May, born 4 January 1887; died 11 June 1971, Brockton, Plymouth, MA; married Daniel M. Glidden
- William Otis, born 27 October 1888; died 17 May 1961, Calais, ME; married Harriet Blanche Fleming
- Ruth Rebecca, born 22 September 1891; died March 1978, Bangor, Penobscot, ME; married Roscoe Crosby
- Edgar Hartwell, born 14 September 1894; died 8 August 1960, Wrentham, Norfolk, MA; married Alice Mae Glidden
What happened to the children after their father died? Eldest child Howard was 21 years old when his father died. He hasn’t been found in the 1900 census. However, Frank was boarding with Henry and Margaret Day in Calais. Margaret was an adopted daughter of Thomas and Mary Coleman, so a grand aunt of Howard. Ethel and Edgar were living in Wrentham, Massachusetts with their Aunt Augusta Getchell Stewart’s family. Sarah is missing in 1900, but she married in Lynn, MA in 1906. William haven’t been found in 1900. Ruth was living with her grandparents, William and Sarah Coleman. The children were apparently scattered to relatives who could care for them until they came of age.