Monday, January 27, 2014

SLIG 2014 Part III - Our Group Project

On Tuesday morning Paula handed out the group project information and we were all very anxious to look it over. Our group of three, the lawyer who did our data entry, the military expert and the online researcher, quickly dissected the information from the original document for George C. Pollard. It contained the following:

Military History
Enlisted 14 Nov 1891, at St. Paul, MN
Pvt. Company K, 8th US Cav
Discharged 27 Nov 1892, at Ft. Mead, SD
Cause of discharge: "Spec. order #273"
Disabilities at time of admission to Home: "0740 Hernia, left inguinal incomplete"

Personal History
B. Stanton Co., MN, 17 Jul 1869, presently age 63 (abt. 1932)
Can read & write
Religion: Catholic
Occupation: Farmer
Resid. Subsequent to discharge: Newcastle, WY
Nearest relative: George C. Pollard, son in Los Angeles, CA

Home History
Rate of Pension: "ad"
Date of Admission, Re-admission & Transfer: 1
"B.M.S." (?) 23 Dec. 22, 1932
Date of Discharge & Transfer: Dix 24 Apr 1933 (4 months)
Cause of Discharge: "OR."

You may want to stop reading now and do some of your own research on this project and come back and compare your results with ours. This is not meant to be a contest to see who can get the most records. In the process of sharing our results in class we each got a chance to share our top three documents and then had a class discussion. Now here is the process I used, which several people asked me to share.

My first step in any project is to try to locate the individual or the family in census records. Using and my personal subscription, my preference is to use the old search function. Using this for George C. Pollard brought up 42 census and voter lists, 76 birth, marriage and death records, 1 military record (the one provided by Paula), 2 immigration and travel records, 76 school, directories and church records, and 2 tax, criminal, land and wills records. Now not all of these are our subject, but all should be reviewed. He also can be searched as George, Geo, or G.C. Pollard, and sometimes search functions will bring up some of these alternate spellings.

The original document was only a partial copy of the page, so locating it was helpful. The indexing indicated that he was at Battle Mt. Sanitarium in Hot Springs, Fall River, South Dakota, he was born in Stanton Co., Minn abt. 1869 and he was admitted in 1932, age 63.

From there it was time to look at the 1870 census in Minnesota. He was not there, but there was a Pollard family, husband James a farmer, wife Margaret and nine children, the oldest two born in Wisconsin and the others all born in Minnesota. There is also an agricultural schedule listing the father. Moving on to the 1880 census the family is nowhere to be found, there is not even a listing for the town Lillian Township where they lived in 1870.  So, backtracking some to the 1860 census this same family is in the same town with four children, two born in Wisconsin and two born in Minnesota.

Fortunately there is the Minnesota, Territorial and State Censuses, 1849-1905; this time searching for James Pollard. They appear in 1865 in Lillian Township in Goodhue County, and 1875, 1885 and 1895 in Stanton Township, Goodhue County. In the 1865 census James appears with his wife Margaret M. and seven children, but no George. In the 1875 census there is finally a listing for a baby George C. who is 3 years old and the youngest of ten children, the first two born in Wisconsin and the rest in Minnesota. In the 1885 census he is there again as Geo. age 14. In the 1895 census it appears that James has remarried to Ellen and there are four unknown children all born in Minnesota. In all of these records the father is born in England and the mother in Ireland, except the last when the mother is born in Canada.

The 1890 census did not help us, except for the Veterans schedule which shows James Pollard on the Surviving Soldiers, Sailors, and Marines, and Widows, etc., Minor Civil Division: Stanton. James is listed as a Private, Company I, Reg. 1 Minn., enlisted 10 Feb 1865, discharged 27 Sept 1865, served 7 months, 17 days, PO address Stanton, Minn., Pensioner.

In the 1900 census we find James and Ellen still living in Stanton, with two children (listed as step-chilren). James is listed as immigrating to the US in1818, has lived here for 72 years and is naturalized. Ellen is listed as having had 14 children and 10 are living. She came in 1864 and has lived here for 34 years. They have been married for 8 years. In the 1910 census they are living in Stanton with one step daughter. It does note that this is the second marriage for both. He is the manager of his farm.

In the 1900 census George C. is located in Terry School Township, Lawrence County, South Dakota. His birthdate is listed as July 1873, and his father was born in England and his mother was born in Ireland. He appears to be single and working as a day laborer. In the 1910 census he is in Lawrence County, SD, divorced, and is a farmer.
The 1920 census finds George in Mountain Meadow, Lawrence County, SD., living alone, working as a farmer.

The 1930 census places George as living in Spencer Precinct, Weston County, Wyoming working as a farmer and is a veteran. His parents are shown as being born in England and Northern Ireland. He is living with Ada M. Stevens, a cook, who is widowed. His son George C. Pollard is found living in Los Angeles, CA with his wife Emma B. and their daughter Elizabeth C. who is 5 and was born in CA. Sarah L. Gleason, mother in law, is living with them.

The last available census in 1940 lists George C. the father living in Newcastle, Weston County, Wyoming with his partner Ben Thomas Jr. Ben lived in the same house five years before, but George lived in a rural area of Weston County. George is not working, but Ben is a laborer doing private work. George provided the information. For the marital status the "M" has been crossed out and a "7" is shown. His son George C. Pillard (mis-spelling) born about 1903 in South Dakota, is living with his wife Emma and daughter Betty age 15 in Los Angeles, CA.

That's it, all the census records but the 1880 were found. If you find the family in the 1880 census there should be a prize. Let me know if you should find them and you will be acknowledged for doing so. Look for SLIG 2014 Part IV and there will be a recap of the project and the final records found will be shared.

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