I have a routine that I follow every month. I have a list of ancestor’s names that I put into Google, and other search sites that I use. These are my missing relatives that I try to find each month. They are for the most part from my Father’s side of the family. When my father was twelve his family was broken up and scattered. He very seldom spoke of his family. When asked a question about them he gave vague answers at best. I have no pictures of my father before the age of thirty. So it is my job to search for these people each month to see what if anything shows up.
This was what I was doing when I put the name Frank Ezra Moore, into Google. But what I got was another of my missing relatives Ainslee Moore , Frank E. Moore’s, daughter and my Father’s sister. Ainslee is a person I have been searching for years. Frank, was mentioned as her father in a web site They Came to Milton. There it was all the information on Ainslee Moore that I had been looking for. Ainslee had been adopted by a doctor and their family when she was about four years old. I believe that would have been the last time my father saw her.
The next week was spent finding the documentation I needed to back up what I have found. I used ancestery.com, local historical societies, and several digital newspaper sites, that I subscribe to. The proof, the information that I needed started to flow in. Newspaper articles, obituaries, Find a Grave web site, census, and more. I had by this time a nice list of Ainslee’s family to try and reach. In the past I have done this by telephone, but this time I reached out by Face book. I sent two messages out and waited. This is the worst and the best part of genealogy, contacting a missing part of the family. They could be quite unfriendly or receive you warmly. I have experienced both and everything in between. I can well understand why. Here is a stranger asking all these questions about the family, this would put anyone on the defensive.
Let me give you a general background of what happened to my father’s family. He was to lose his mother and a 14-year-old sister within 24 hours victims of the flu in 1920. His father Frank Ezra Moore was unable ( a very generous term) to take care of his family. He was to go to prison and the children scattered. One brother Robert was adopted by a family named Stone or he just changed his name to Stone. He is one of the missing I am still trying to find. Maxwell was about eight years old. He was placed in the county home and was “lent” out to do farm work. At the age of thirteen he was working in the coal mines. The eldest sister Ethel, at about age 20 tried to take care of the rest of the family. My father Charles, age 14, Frank, age 12, and their sister Elzada age ten.
It was several long days before my message sent via face book was answered. Ainslee’s daughter (my first cousin) was to answer me. Unfortunately she had no information about her Mother’s family. It seems the doctor who adopted Ainslee moved the family to Milton Wisconsin. They had originally lived in New York near the border with Pennsylvania. My father’s family lived in Pennsylvania. Most of the family ties were broken and lost. Ethel the eldest was the only one to keep in contact. But I was sent some great family photographs of a young Ainslee and as she grew into old age. Her wedding picture is at the top of the blog. By the large family gatherings, of which pictures I was sent a sizeable family grew in Wisconsin. Judging by the pictures she had a good childhood, then raised a family of five children.
It is very hard to explain but it made me very happy to see that she enjoyed a more normal childhood than her siblings did. The stories of my father’s family up until now were sad and tragic. It also shows how a helping hand can change the life of a person. While I am sure it was not a perfect ending to Ainslee’s story it was much better and happier than those of her siblings.