This week’s Saturday Night Genealogical Fun prompt from Randy Seaver’s Genea-Musings blog is to follow Chris Staats’ rules (from Freaky Friday: Random Research Reports) for picking a random person’s name and then doing some online research about that person. Here are Chris’ rules:
1. Go to The Random Name Generator and click the red “Generate Name” button at the top of the screen
2. Go to Ancestry.com and enter your generated name in the search box on the main search page.
3. From the results, your research target will be the first census result for your generated name.
4. Using whatever online resources are at your disposal, see what else you can discover about your random person and write about it. It can be a formal report complete with footnotes, or just a “research story” about what you tried, problems you overcame, or success you had. Maybe you want to create a research plan for practice?
5. Post about it on your blog or wherever you wish, and link here to tell Chris about it. Tell Randy about it too as a comment here or a comment on Facebook or Twitter.
The name I got from the Random Name Generator was Eugenia Louie Sullivan.
The first census record I found (for Eugenia L Sullivan) was the 1910 US Census. Eugenie was 16 and living with her uncle Michael Malone (50) and her sisters Jospehine (21) and Drue E (18) in Mobile, Alabama. Eugenia was born in Alabama and at the time of the census is a sales lady at a dry goods store. (Citation: Year: 1910; Census Place: Mobile Ward 6, Mobile, Alabama; Roll: T624_27; Page: 15A; Enumeration District: 96; Image: 504.)
I decided my next step would be to go back in time and see if I could find her in the 1900 US Census. I found her, age 6, living in Mobile, AL. At that time she was living with her parents Patrick (40) and Elizabeth (33) Sullivan. They had been married 13 years and had had five children, of whom three were living. In addition to Eugenia, there were her sisters Josephine (10) and Drusilla (8). Also living with the family are Elizabeth’s father Patrick Malone (70) and her brother John Malone (37). It is now obvious that the Michael Malone the girls are living with by 1910 is their mother’s brother. (Citation: Year: 1900; Census Place: Mobile Ward 6, Mobile, Alabama; Roll: T623_31; Page: 3B; Enumeration District: 103.)
Next, I found Eugenia in the 1920 census. That year, Eugenia (25) and Josephine (30) are living with their uncle Michael Malone (63) in Mobile, AL. Eugenia is a seamstress in a dry goods store. (Citation: Year: 1920;Census Place: Mobile Ward 6, Mobile, Alabama; Roll: T625_35; Page: 29B; Enumeration District: 107; Image: 661.)
In the 1930 census, Eugenia (31) is living with her uncle Michael (73) in Mobile, AL. She is a saleswoman in a department store. And somehow she has lost four years in age. (I wouldn’t mind trying that!) (Citation: Year: 1930; Census Place: Mobile, Mobile, Alabama; Roll: 41; Page: 32B; Enumeration District: 57; Image: 716.0.)
Next, I thought I’d try to find a record for Eugenia’s death. On www.familysearch.org I found a Social Security Death Index record for a Eugenia Sullivan born on November 17, 1892. That’s a little off the 1894 I was expecting, but close enough (given the vagaries of census records) that I’m fairly certain it is her. Given more time, I would continue searching for additional information. In any event, Eugenia died in February 1986 at about 94 years of age in Mobile, AL. (From familysearch.org US Social Security Death Index)
I also found death records for her sisters – Josephine S. Crolich died on December 17, 1974 at 85 years of age and Drusella Hilderbrand died on December 31, 1968 at 78 years of age. (Both from familysearch.org Alabama Deaths, 1908-1974)
I also found her uncle’s death record. He died on August 24, 1938 at 81 years of age. (From familysearch.org Alabama Deaths, 1908-1974) He had been married to Josephine Fourment, but was widowed prior to the 1900 census. The 1900 census shows him living with his father-in-law Zephran Fourment (72) and his daughter Clothilde (10). What I didn’t notice until I pulled up the census record again, was that the Malone/Fourments were living right next door to the Sullivans. This serves to highlight the importance of looking at a record in its entirety rather than just finding the only facts you think you need. (Citation: Year: 1900; Census Place: Mobile Ward 6, Mobile, Alabama; Roll: T623_31; Page: 3B; Enumeration District: 103.)
Given unlimited time, I would continue to try to find her parents’ death records, since it appears that they passed away somewhere between the 1900 and 1910 censuses. I was not able to quickly find those records. For now I’ll leave Eugenia here. She lived a long life – I hope it was a happy one.