After you’ve spent any significant amount of time searching for your ancestors, you no doubt have discovered how easily it is to get off course when you stumble upon an unexpected scrap of information. Over the years, experience has taught me to go with this flow rather than forcing myself to remain on task.
Such was the case of chasing down my elusive Lane family. Hoping to determine whether they lived in the city or county of St. Louis at the time my great grandmother “Mamie” married Clarence Lane in about 1916, I located Mamie’s older brother Tom A. Moore and his 2nd wife Eleanor (Chase) residing in Chicago. Although I knew from family letters that Tom had been a lumberman and had first eloped with the St. Louis debutante, Rebecca Tebbetts, I had never located him in a census with his 2nd wife Eleanor and knew nothing of her or her ancestry. I only knew Tom had eventually settled in Los Angeles, California.
Happily accepting the detour, I was ready to follow its lead. The 1910 census listed Eleanor C. as 23 years of age, born in Illinois, father born in Illinois and mother in New York. The enumerator listed this as her first marriage and Tom’s second, and indicated they had been married less than a year. After locating them in the 1920 census with their son, Tom Jr., I was able to quickly find a certificate of birth for their son Tom Jr. at Familysearch.org. The certificate listed him as their first child and gave the birthplace of Eleanor as Rockford, Illinois. Their place of residence at the time of his birth on Sunday, October 29th, 1911 matched the address 1375 E. 54th St., Chicago, on the 1910 census. From here I easily located Tom and Eleanor in the 1930 census residing at 708 S. Sheridan Road in Highland Park City, Illinois.
Now that I knew Eleanor had been born in Illinois in about 1886, I back-tracked to locate her prior to her marriage. I found an Eleanor in 1900 residing in Hyde Park Twp residing at 41st street. The information matched her age (born April 1886), and listed her as the daughter of Ira R. Chase (born Feb 1860 IL) and Frances (born Oct 1864 IL). Although her mother’s place of birth did not match the 1910 or 1920 listing Frances born in NY, I still believed this to be the correct family.
I knew from family letters Tom A. Moore had died in Los Angeles, so I searched the California Death Index for Eleanor and found her listed as having been born 26 Apr 1886 in Illinois and having died in Los Angeles on 01 Jul 1950. Her mother’s maiden name was listed as Barnes – which lead me to search for an “Ira R. Chase” + “Barnes” on Google which yielded the marriage of Frances Estella Barnes to Ira in Rockford, Winnebago Co., Illinois – thus matching the birthplace of Eleanor which had been recorded on the birth certificate of her son in 1911.
It didn’t take long locate the earlier census records of the Chase families in Cherry Valley, Winnebago Co., Illinois but I was unsuccessful in locating him in 1850. As anyone knows who is not a subscriber to the paid databases, the 1850 is not indexed nearly as complete as the other census years. However, having spent many years at the microfilm readers scrolling through each page of a township for a family, I find this process interesting. Whereas locating a family in an index and simply clicking the link to its page, scrolling through the neighborhood truly acquaints you with the families. In this case, while perusing the townships of Loudon and Canterbury I realized there were LOTS of families named Batchelder in the 1850 census which meant it was fairly probable that at least one Chase had married into this family. With this reasoning, I Googled books for “Batchelder + Chase in Loudon, New Hampshire” and came up with a hit on the Batchelder Genealogy listing a marriage of an Isaiah Chase to an Abigail Batchelder. A subsequent search lead me to “Seven Generations of the Descendants of Aquila and Thomas Chase which supported the 1850 census record I had found for Isaiah and Abby.
According to the two books aforementioned, Isaiah was born in Haverhill to Captain James Chase and Elizabeth (Haseltine) in Haverhill on 05 Dec 1776 and died in Loudon, New Hampshire on 17 Oct 1858 at the age of 82 years, 10 months and 22 days. His wife was Abigail Batchelder whom he had married in Loudon on 05 Dec 1799. She died in Loudon on 10 Oct 1859. They were the parents of: Harriet R. who married Alfred Haines; Ira A. who married Hannah Cate; Newel and Perley – twins who died in their infancy; William Friend who married Mary H. Currier; Albert M. who married Sarah Jane Green; Emerson Harris who died in his infancy; and James Haselton who was listed with his wife Belinda in Isaiah’s 1850 household and was fatally wounded at the Battle of Antietam in 1863.
I then located Henry in the Illinois, Deaths and Stillbirths 1916-1947 as Henry "Bachelor" Chase which is no doubt a spelling variant of Batchelder or Bachelder. According to the document, he died at the age of 89 on 24 Oct 1918 and was buried at Cedar Bluff Cemetery in Rockford. Since there was no entry for him on Find A Grave, I added him and requested a headstone photo which has been claimed and will hopefully be fulfilled shortly- with perhaps additional information of others buried nearby.
So although I’ve yet to track down the Lanes with any more certainty than what I had found earlier this year, I was able to find more information about the ancestry of my great grandmother’s sister-in-law, Eleanor Chase who I now know descended from the colonial family of Aquila Chase who had arrived in New England in about 1639.
1911 Record of Birth - Tom Moore, Jr.
In brief: Eleanor Marion Chase was born in Winnebago Co., Illinois to Ira R. Chase and Frances Estella (Barnes) on 26 Apr 1886. Her grandfather was Henry B. Chase, son of Ira, and grandson of Isaiah and "Nabby" (Bachelder) Chase. She was married to lumberman Thomas Anthony Moore, son of Thomas Anderson Moore and Clarissa Vanbergen (Pilcher), in Chicago, Illinois on 02 Feb 1910 and to this union was born one son, Tom Jr. who was born on 29 Oct 1911. Eleanor was widowed on 27 Feb 1948 in Los Angeles, and died in that city on 01 Jul 1950. Place of burial not known.
As time permits, I’ll add the full documentation and ancestry of Eleanor Chase to my Moore & Pilcher website and continue to look for the ancestry of my grandfather, Clarence Moore Lane. Updated link 13 Aug 2012 Ancestors & Descendants of Eleanor M. Chase
Thanks for sharing a little of your time with me. If you have additional information, or you care to drop an email or comment, I'd enjoy hearing from you.
Abbot Abiel, A genealogical register of the descendants of George Abbot of Andover : George Abbot of Rowley, Thomas Abbot of Andover, Arthur Abbot of Ipswich, Robert Abbot of Branford, Ct. and George Abbot of Norwalk, Ct., Boston: James Munroe, 1847.
American Lumbermen, the Personal History and Public and Business Achievements of one hundred eminent Lumbrmen of the United States, The American Lumberman, Chicago, 1906 (Thomas Anthony Moore, p. 365)
Biographical Review, the leading citizens of Hampden County, Massachusetts, Biographical Review Publishing Co., Boston, 1895 (Henry A. Chase, p 520-521)
Biographical Review, the Leading Citizens of Rockingham Co., New Hampshire, Biographical Review Publishing Co., Boston, 1896 (Arthur M. Chase, p. 337-338)
Chase, John Carroll, Chamberlain, George Walter, Seven Generations of the Descendants of Aquila and Thomas Chase, Derry, NH, 1928
Chase, Nia Sawyer Chase and Allied Families, Genalogical and Biographical, The American Historical Society, Inc. New York, 1930
Clark, Emily A. A Record of the Chases, their earliest known history to the eleventh generation of some of the descendants of Aquila Chase of Newbury, Mass., John B. Clarke Co., Manchester, NH, 1898
Hanaford, Mary E. Neal, Family records of the branches of the Hanaford, Thompson, Huckins, Prescott, Smith, Neal, Haley, Lock, Swift, Plumer, Leavitt, Wilson, Green, and allied families, Rockford, Illinois, 1915.