Thursday, March 4, 2010

Women's History Month: Marriage Records

Today's instruction from Lisa Alzo at The Accidental Genealogist is:

March 4 — Do you have marriage records for your grandparents or great-grandparents? Write a post about where they were married and when. Any family stories about the wedding day? Post a photo too if you have one.

I have a marriage record for my maternal great-grandparents and my paternal great-grandparents, and for my maternal grandparents, but not for my paternal grandparents -- just haven't got round to that one yet.

My maternal great-grandparents were Francis Harvey "Frank" Reed and Florence Elizabeth McKee. The marriage was announced on page 1 of the Monticello (Indiana) Herald, Thursday, September 18, 1884: "Married, at the residence of the bride's mother, on Wednesday, Sept. 10, 1884, at 12:30 p.m., by Rev. L. J. Natzger of Logansport, Mr. Frank Reed, of Portland, Ind., to Miss Flora McKee, of this place. The ceremony was witnessed by a number of friends and relatives and the happy couple were the recipients of many handsome and appropriate gifts. They left on the afternoon train for Logansport, their future residence, bearing with them the well wishes of many friends in this locality."

On the marriage certificate itself, the minister signed his name as Lyn Naftzger, so the newspaper had it misspelled, but one can hardly blame the poor copywriter!

I do not have a wedding picture, but I have a picture of the two of them many years later. They look like typical reticent midwesterners!

My maternal grandparents, Benjamin Franklin Reed, also called "Frank," and Ruth Nave, were married 23 November 1913 in the county courthouse at South Bend, Indiana. He was a railroad switchman and she was a telephone operator. I have no photographs of them at all.

My paternal great-grandparents, Oscar Merry Packard and Sarah Augusta Hetherington, were married 17 August 1871 in Bloomington, McLean County, Illinois. I have no photographs of either of them.

I do know that my paternal grandparents were married sometime around the turn of the 20th century in southern California. My great-grandfather had brought his young family to southern California sometime in the 1890s, and it was a good place for him to be in the next 30 years, as he was a real estate salesman and developer. I do not know if my grandfather, Walter Hetherington Packard, had followed his father's footsteps originally, but later on he was supervisor of a local dairy. My grandmother, Elizabeth Jane Reynolds, is shown in a photograph in 1897, taken by a Los Angeles studio, and has signed her name "Bessie Reynolds" on the back. I do not have a photo of their wedding day, either. The only photo I have of my grandparents together is this photo, later in life, with their son Arden, who was visiting home on leave from the United States Naval Academy, probably 1932 or 1933. Arden Packard was my father.



Marti said...

"My maternal great-grandparents, Oscar Merry Packard and Sarah Augusta Hetherington"

You mean paternal?

Karen Packard Rhodes said...

Argh, you are right. Finger fault! I will edit that, but keep the comments. Thanks for proofreading behind these old eyes.