Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Chasing another black sheep


Copyright © 2013 Deidre Erin Denton, used with permission

How would you like to get an email like this?  (Names changed to protect the guilty) 

"Oh goodness Michele.  It's a mess with John Doe's records because of his lifestyle.  I spoke to my uncle today who states that John was once married to a woman from Minnesota and that they had a son together.  He couldn't recall her name.  The divorce papers from Jane and John, dated in 1951, listed John's address in Connecticut, so it is very possible he had a wife up north.  My uncle, who is John's son, states that his father was married illegally a few times.  John was also married to a woman who's first name was Mary- I believe that marriage took place in Colorado.  He was a rambler and womanizer.   Good luck!"

So far I have found three marriages and annulment.  None of the ones I found were in Minnesota, Connecticut or Colorado.  I guess I have a ways to go yet.  By the way, this man was my grandfather's half brother. 

Copyright © 2013 Michele Simmons Lewis


  1. I live in MN & my ancestors have been here for several generations. Do you know about the MOMS site for marriage certificate searches? I've found that most on here are the marriage date but some are license dates which can actually be lucky. My husband's father was born out of wedlock & he had heard once that his dad's father's name was Anderson. With many people dead already & that there's no contact with, I thought I'd never solve that one. Fortunately my husband's grandmother apparently applied for a marriage license with the biological Anderson father about a month after his dad was born. I ordered the certificate & found out they never went through with it but I got the license anyway. Lucky for me!

  2. I hadn't seen this site (I haven't done anything in MN before). I didn't find anything though. I just bookmarked it. I might need it again!

  3. Some ancestors just like to keep it interesting! My husband's great grandmother was married a documented 7 times. She also made a deathbed confession of an 8th marriage that we have not found yet. 2 divorces, 1 annulment, 1 heart attack, 2 different kinds of cancer, and one surviving husband. The best part is that she is buried with her favorite husband - not the one who survived her. She was a woman who loved men!