Tag Archives: Old Photos

Robbinston, Maine Photo, c1910, Going Home

My 2X great grandmother, Nellie F. (Tarbox) Adams (1856-1927) was born in the small town of Robbinston, Washington, Maine, just south of the big city of Calais, where much of my mother’s paternal family had lived since the 1830s.

Nellie’s father, unlike many men of the time, wasn’t a farmer. He bought up various businesses and ran them.

Although George and Mary Elizabeth (Scripture) Tarbox had originally settled in Robbinston, having migrated north from Newburyport, Massachusetts, they soon moved into Calais. I suspect that their move was precipitated by George’s need to be in Calais often to attend to his business concerns.

Robbinston had a population of just over 1100 residents back in 1860, when Nellie was a little girl. Today, the population is only half that – 575 souls.

EBay is a favorite shopping site for historical photos of the towns in which my ancestors lived.

When I saw the photo above up for sale, I knew I had to buy it and send it back home to its current owners.

Since this house was said to be on “Main Street,” which today is the state highway, I spent a few minutes meandering along the road via Google maps, until I reached today’s street view of the house.

Because I don’t know who owned this house at the turn of the 20th century and the address was only R.F.D. #3, Robbinston, Maine, I had no clues to follow. By the way, R.F.D. is Rural Free Delivery.

Since the photo was taken, the road has been widened considerably and it looks like much of the added roadway came from the front yard of this house.

However, I asked a contact who lives in the Calais area if it would be possible to knock on the door to find out who lives in the house today so this photo can go back home.



Elvira Alzina Parker (1818-1897), Wife of Henry H. Belcher of Lenawee County, OH

Elvira Alzina Parker (181-1897), Wife of Henry H. Belcher

Back of Photo

Elvira Alzina Parker was born 27 November 1818 in New York. Husband Henry H. Belcher was also born in New York in 1815.

By 1840, they had married and moved to Lenawee County, Michigan.

The back of the photo lists Elvira’s children, although son Hiram, 3 months old in the 1850 census, is not included.

I found this photo on EBay and there were several other family photos on sale at the same time, but I only purchased this one of the family matriarch.


  1. Louisa Lucy, born c1840; died 5 August 1909, Hillsdale County, MI; married (1) Myron Warner, who was 30 years older and died between 1870-1880 (2) Hebert Bills, 24 March 1881, Lenawee County, MI. Louisa had one daughter, Libby, but she was not at home in 1880 and may have died young. The Bills haven’t been found in the 1900 census so I don’t know if she had any other children.
  2. Rowena, born c1842; died after 1880; married Enos F. Wood. The Woods had a son and a daughter, but this family hasn’t been found after 1880.
  3. John C., born c1845; died 6 March 1892; married Hester O. Warner, 7 June 1876, Hillsdale County, MI. This couple hasn’t been found after their marriage.
  4. William Henry, born c1847; died 11 September 1895, Hillsdale County, MI; married Mary Matilda Strick, 17 April 1873, Hillsdale County, MI; and lived in Williams County, OH in 1880 and likely into the 1890s. His mother’s photo was taken in Pioneer, Williams County, Ohio in 1890. It appears they had no children.
  5. Sarah Jane, born 1 June 1849; died 30 July 1886, reportedly in Billings, Montana; married George H. Geer, 19 November 1873, Lenawee County, MI. In 1880, the family lived at Fort McKinney, Carbon, Wyoming. They had one son who isn’t found after 1880 and one daughter, Elvira, named for her grandmother.
  6. Hiram, born May 1850; 3 months old in the 1850 census; died 20 January 1906, William County, OH; married Anna M. Orewiler. Elvira was able to visit both sons at once, at Hiram’s family lived right in Pioneer, where she had her picture taken. Hiram and Anna had at least one child who lived to adulthood, daughter Mary.
  7. William Edwin, born 23 June 1858; died 23 December 1941, Lenawee County, MI; married (1) Lucy Geer, 27 June 1875, Lenawee County, MI (2)Frances Dority, 19 August 1880, Hillsdale County, MI. They had five children, but divorced in March 1906.
  8. Azle Oscar, born 14 October 1860; died 10 February 1928, Montcalm county, MI; married Lydia Anne Picking, 9 April 1882, Lenawee County, MI. They had seven children.
  9. George Willard, born 9 August 1862; died 17 October 1922; married Julia Olive Wilson, 19 March 1890, Lenawee County, MI. They had two sons.

As you can see, Elvira has a number of grandchildren, many of whom probably have descendants, too. This neat family photo is going home to one of them.

Sarah, Charles, Jennie and Edward Franklin of Olney, IL Are Going Home

Edward, Jennie, Charles & Sarah Franklin (L to R)
Olney, Richland, Illinois, c1882

This is a photograph that I rescued on eBay. As I later discovered, the inscription on the back correctly names the children, but they were orphans of William Franklin, taken in by their grandparents when William and his wife died within a few months of each other.

The story begins with Christopher and Sarah Franklin, born c1820 and c1833, respectively in England. It took some census jumping around to fill in some of the family members.

The Franklin family apparently emigrated from England to the United States shortly after the 1850 census, as they haven’t been located in it.

The 1860 census of Jasper County, Illinois shows the following:

Christopher Franklin, 35, born England (c1825)
Sarah, 27, born England (c1833)
William, 14, born England (c1846)
James, 12, born England (c1848)
Jackson, 7, born NJ (c1853)
Elizabeth, 70, born NJ (probably should be England), c1790

By 1870, the family had moved to Richland County, Illinois, which borders Jasper County’s southern line.

Christopher Franklin, 52, born England (c1818)
Sarah, 35, born England (c1825)
James, 21, born England (c1849)
John E., 17, born New Jersey (c1853)

Their son, William, is no longer at home because he married Caroline Rapp, 24 December 1868, in Jasper County. Caroline was born c1849 in Germany.

By 1880, the number of people in the Franklin home had increased, but they were nephew, nieces and grandchildren:

Christ Franklin, 60, born England (c1820)
Sarah, 47, born England (c1833)
Benjamin A., 25, born Ohio (married, but no wife listed), nephew
Anna R., 23, born Ohio, niece, single
Florence, born 1859, Ohio, niece
Sarah A., 10, born 1870, IL, granddaughter
Edward, 8, born 1872, IL, grandson
Jane, born 6, 1874, granddaughter
Charles C., 4, born 1876, grandson

(Thomas) Collet Canny, 19, is also in the home and identified as an adopted son, born in Illinois.

The census also gives one important piece of additional information. For the four grandchildren, it states that their father was born in England and their mother in Germany.

Next, remember the marriage record I mentioned above for William and Caroline Rapp? In 1870, the couple is living in Jasper County, Illinois and also in the home is baby Sarah, 9 months old with the notation that she was born in September 1869.

Further, Dundas Cemetery in Richland County is where Christopher Franklin was buried in February 1897 and Sarah in March 1919. Two other Franklin graves are for William Franklin, who died 30 September 1877 and Caroline Franklin, who died just four months later on 15 January 1878.

That explains how Sarah, Edward, Jennie and Charles came to be living with their grandparents in 1880.

Who are the nephew’s and nieces’ parents?

Florence is found with her parents in Marion County, Ohio in 1860. They are George F. Franklin, born 1829, England, and Harriet V. (Beerbaur), born 1838, Ohio and children Hooper, born 1858, and Florence, born 1859. They married in Marion County on 21 October 1856.

From this, it appears that George F. Franklin could be a younger brother of Christopher Franklin.

The 1860 census of Clinton County, Ohio shows James Franklin, 40, born England (c1820), Mary H., 36, born England (c1864), Benjamine, 5, born Ohio, Anna J., 3, born Ohio and Florence, 1, born Ohio.

There are now two Florences, both born in the same year – 1859. Which is living with Christopher? The 1870 census of Macon County, Illinois lists George and Harriet Franklin with daughter Fannie, aged 8 and son, William, aged 1.

Therefore Benjamin, Anna and Florence living with their grandparents are all the children of James and Mary Franklin. James then is another brother of Christopher and he and Mary must both have died before 1880.

Now, it is time to send the photograph of the four children of William and Caroline (Rapp) Franklin home to a descendant. Here is more information about each:

1. Sarah Franklin married William Hill on 4 November 1888 in Richland County, Illinois.  They were the parents of five children:

1. May, born May 1889; died 26 October 1933; married William E. Hendershott. They had three children.
2. Floyd, born 1892; died 1961; married Ida Bell Philips. They had three children.
3. Charles, born 1894; died 26 June 1944; married (1) Dora Lottie Phillips (2) Emelie. They had two children.
4. Beatrice, born 1899; died 1969; married Oscar Heady. They had three children.
5. Hazel, born c1905; mentioned in brother Charles’s 1944 obituary.

2. Edward J. Franklin married Martha J. Storer, 15 April 1900 in Richland County, Illinois. They had two children:

1. Howard William, born 1901; died 1942; married Malinda I. McQuillen. They had one child.
2. Florence Vera, born 1908; died 21 December 1972; married James H. Anderson, 1940. No further information.

3. Jane Franklin married James J. Kinkade on 8 April 1897 in Richland County, Illinois. James died soon as in 1910 Jane and her son were living with her widowed grandmother, Sarah Franklin. Jane and James had two children, although the first was born the year before they married and it’s possible that James had a first marriage. Jane reported that she had two living children, but only Edward was in the home. Connie would have been just 14 years old.

1. Connie, born September 1896; no further record after 1900 census.
2. Edward Marshall, born February 1900; died 12 October 1982; married Thelma Louisa Perry, 9 February 1928.  They had two children.

4. Charles Christopher Franklin married Josie O. Storer, 5 September 1900 in Richland County, Illinois. They had three children:

  1. George S., born 1904; married Anna Pearl Grimes, 20 October 1928, Washington County, Indiana. They had one child.
  2. Thelma M., born 6 November 1904; died 27 June 1995; apparently never married.
  3. Mildred E., born 24 August 1909; died 20 October 1989; married Ross Maris Orndorff. They had two children.

From all these descendants, I have located three great grandchildren of Charles and Josie Franklin. The photo of Charles and his siblings has gone home to family. 🙂