01 September 2014

Breaking the Stone Family Genealogical Roadblock Broken

Copyright Slowmoto Graphics 2014


Edward H. Myers was married to my great grandmother Almedia Wright in 1895. He disappeared before 1900, according to the 1900 census and the 1903 divorce initiated by Almedia for abandonment. He is not a direct relative to me but it did intrigue me. Almedia married James Bruebaker and then after my grandmother was born, she disappeared as well. My husband and I have searched a clue about Edward's life after he left for the last five years.

Recently I reviewed the records we did know belonged to Edward, including his marriage certificate to Almedia. From this record, we felt reasonably secure that he matched the 1880 census record with matching parents and a location of Franklin, Pennsylvania. We traced his parents and siblings without success. We were hoping we would find him in a later census with a sibling or parent.

From the divorce record, Almedia (Medie) suspected he went out west. She stated in the divorce record on Library of Virginia (chancery archives, index number 1903-070) that he left in 1898 and was staying in Arkansas. So I started looking at Find-A-Grave, FamilySearch, Fold3, LVA.virginia.gov, Ancestry.com, for death records, marriage records, census, church records, drafts registrations, military records, state archives, and prison records anywhere past the Mississippi. We entered his name into Newspapers.com in multiple variations and spellings looking for articles with his name. We also searched for records not online. On Find-A-Grave I found a grave stone, with a close birth date and matching middle initial.

Still searching, a death certificate surfaced for an Edward Mires uploaded by another member of Ancestry.com. The death certificate was for Edward Henry Mires and his parents were transcribed as George Myers and Sarral Avert. Could Edward Henry Mires and Edward H. Myers be the same person? The “Edward H. Myers” I was researching was born to George Myers and Sarah West in Pennsylvania. I looked closer at the death certificate and wow, it looked like Sarah A West, not Avest. This matched the 1880 census, his marriage certificate to Almedia, and now, his death record.

Edward's second wife, Ollie Thacker was born in Wise County, the last known whereabouts of Edward H. Myers. Ollie Thacker is a resident there per the 1896 Wise County School census. She was not in 1900 census and neither was Edward Myers, in Wise County, (or any other 1900 census as of date.) Edward Myers’ first wife was living with her mom, Margaret Wright, in Wise County with two children, Ethel and Alfred. Ollie was an orphan and was thought to have been placed on an Orphan Train that ended up in Idaho. We continue to search for Edward and Ollie in the 1900 census either together or apart and a marriage certificate. The 1910 census reports them being married 10 years.
Both, Edward and Ollie resurfaced in the 1910 census with their son Jess “Jessifer” Myers in Colorado. Jess was documented as being born in Arkansas. Jess served time in prison in Colorado. Later, he married Gertrude Fletcher and had a son Donald. Edward and Ollie had a second son, Eugene Earl Myers in 1912. He was a marine and died by friendly fire.

Eventually we did find information that her grandson Donald lived with his parents, Jess and Gertrude in Idaho during Ollie’s lifetime thus inferring that she may have lived there as well which gives credence to the documentation of Ollie being referred to as “Idaho Ollie,” by her brother, when she would later visit him back in Virginia. Donald Myers married overseas to a girl from London and brought his wife back to the states.

Edward Henry Myers died in 1918 during the Flu Epidemic. Eugene Earl Myers, his son, was eventually buried beside him.

What an amazing feeling of success to finally break the stone that collapsed a genealogical roadblock! We have re-examined records and tried to poke holes in the research. We noted that if any record was missing then the other records would be uncertain. However, when looking at the records as a whole, the theory seems to be more of a reality. We continue to search and confirm findings. We requested photos on Find-A-Grave for his wife and family members. We are searching for a relative that is still living to reconnect.

The Edward Henry Myers Tree, a working project, is on ancestry.com as a public tree. If you have any information, questions, or concerns, please send us an email or message.

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