Saturday, February 16, 2013

Sunday's Obituary - I'm Baaaack!

Marker for Martin, Anna and 2 of their daughters
I've missed you all.  I've missed my blog too, but I'll be honest...this recent move to Colorado kicked my butt.  I'm used to moving.  The military saw to that, but it was so much easier when I was just a little younger and wasn't caring for a desperately sick kitty.  Since I was having such a difficult time getting to my blog I decided to wait until the move was complete before heading back.  So the house is built and the boxes have (almost) all been emptied.  The organizing is mostly done and the kitty is hanging in there, so it's time to get back to it.

During the organization of our office (which is also the place that is still requiring some attention) I started to go through old genealogy papers that I was bad enough to not file and enter into my database when I first collected them.  Bad, but a habit I'm trying to break.  Anyway, I realized that I had several obituaries on the Blanchfield side of my family and not a single one made it into a post! Shameful, but now I'll have posts for Sunday's Obituary for many weeks to come.

I decided to start with the father of this particular collection...Martin Blanchfield.  Martin Blanchfield married Anna Boyle on January 9, 1876 in New York City in Saint Andrew's Catholic Church.  I did blog about their marriage before as St. Andrew's was kind enough to send me a transcription of their marriage sacrament.

Martin and Anna had 12 children:  Mary, Alice, Annie, William, Josephine, Lillian, Catherine, Joseph, and four children that did not survive, but were acknowledged, namelessly in census records.  Their daughter, Alice, was my great grandmother.  The family moved from New York City to the Beaver Meadows area in Carbon County, Pennsylvania.  Most of their children were born in Carbon County (except Mary and Alice), and all except Mary and Alice moved with their parents to Phillipsburg, New Jersey where they lived out the remainder of their lives.

Martin's obituary was published in the "Easton Express" on Monday, May 13, 1935 on page 8...the same day he passed.  The obituary is brief.  Just one short paragraph, but I'll give them credit for squeezing in as much as they could that would help a genealogist:

Easton Express, 13MAY1935, pg 8

"Martin Blanchfield

Martin Blanchfield, aged 75, died early this morning at his home, 65 Glen avenue, from a heart attack after an illness of one week.  Mr Blanchfield was well known and had many friends.  He is survived by two sons and four daughters, William and Joseph Blanchfield, Mrs. Robert Flynn and Misses Anna, Josephine and Lillian Blanchfield.  He was a member of Sts. Philip and James' Catholic Church and the Holy Name Society."

Not too bad for a brief obit.  Church, address, and kids.  No mention of his wife, Anna, so if I hadn't already discovered her death date this would have let me know that she predeceased him.  If only every obituary I needed had this much useful information!


  1. Can I add information :) ? I have lots to add to this guy!

    1. I would love it, dear cousin! That new baby letting you get on the computer :p

      Do you have any pics of Martin and Anna's kids? We will have to pow-wow when I come home!

    2. The kneeler is the marker for Anna Martin And 3 daughters -- Anna Josephine and Lillian. The four children that died early on were two sets of twins. One set was born in NYC in 1882. I think I sent you a picture of the birth record. They were named Patrick and Thomas. I dont know when they died but I suspect it might have been in Pennsylvania. The family was listed in a NYC DIRECTORY for 1883 but I know my great grandfather William was born in 1884 in Pennsylvania. I have record of Martin's birth in Gortnavern County Kilkenny Ireland in 1845. I also have the names of his parents and grandparents. I will have to show you all this when you come home this summer. Oh and you should have an email that Joe Blanchfield sent to me last summer that has pictures of Martin Anna and the kids in it. I have a great desire to check out St. Mary's baptism records ASAP but it won't be for awhile!