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??? 1864 Chatham Birth Mystery

??? 1864 Chatham Birth Mystery

Posted: 10 Aug 2012 8:13PM GMT
Classification: Query
Edited: 10 Aug 2012 8:14PM GMT
Surnames: Wilder, Alvord, Little
I'm pulling my hair out trying to solve the mystery of my great-great grandma Nettie's birth. Any help or advice would be much appreciated by my sanity!

So here's the conundrum:

According to her obituary, Nettie A Little was born on Sep 03 1864 in Chatham, Ontario. On her son's 1891 birth certificate she says her name is Nettie Alvoord Little, maiden name Wilder.

In 1880 she is living with Henry and Celia Wilder in Chicago, IL with her two sisters Nellie (1863, MI) and Ida (1866, MI). In 1870 Henry, Celia, Nellie and Ida are living in Bay City, MI... BUT Nettie is nowhere to be seen!

But wait, in the the same city is a couple named Henry and Marcia Alvord who have a little 5-year-old daughter born in Canada. And yes, her name is Nettie!

To make matters even weirder, it turns out that Marcia Alvord is Celia Wilder's older sister, and that after 1870 the Alvords live an apparently childless life until they both die in Los Angeles in the 1920s.

So is Nettie a Wilder, an Alvord or a Somethingelse???

My personal theory is that Nettie is the second daughter of the Wilders but that after Celia had her third-child-in-three-years her older sister Marcia (who had been married for 10 years without children) kind of "adopted" Nettie... At least until 1880.
Another clue is that while Henry Alvord has a well-documented history in the Civil War, Henry Wilder does not, implying he may have moved to Canada to evade the draft. (Both the Wilders and Alvords were living in Bay City, MI in 1860.)

Just a theory, however, and without more evidence, like a birth record, it's hard to say for sure who Nettie's real parents were.

Thanks for your interest,

Nat Sharpe
Bathgate ND

Re: ??? 1864 Chatham Birth Mystery

Posted: 10 Aug 2012 11:40PM GMT
Classification: Query
Registration didn't begin in Canada until 1869.
Church records would be your only source.

Who does she give as parents on marriage registration?

Re: ??? 1864 Chatham Birth Mystery

Posted: 11 Aug 2012 3:46AM GMT
Classification: Query
Where and when did she marry and die?

Re: ??? 1864 Chatham Birth Mystery

Posted: 11 Aug 2012 2:08PM GMT
Classification: Query
Alas, only five years too late!

Not sure of her religion, but probably a protestant denomination. Any suggestions for pursuing Chatham church records?

As for Marriage facts all I have is her Cook County marriage license which didn't ask any info on her parents.

Re: ??? 1864 Chatham Birth Mystery

Posted: 11 Aug 2012 2:17PM GMT
Classification: Query
Surnames: Wilder, Alvord, Little
Nettie A Wilder was married to John Wallace Little on Sep 04 1883 (1 day after her 19th birthday) at Henry Wilder's house in Chicago, IL. I have a copy of her marriage license but they didn't ask for the names of parents.

Nettie died Jan 13 1964 in Seattle, Washington. All I have record-wise is her gravestone info and a couple obituaries.

Re: ??? 1864 Chatham Birth Mystery

Posted: 11 Aug 2012 4:52PM GMT
Classification: Query
As you say, her birth certificate would be the most reliable info, but that is not likely available, given the year.
Other records which can help provide circumstantial evidence would be:
-Her death certificate - you can order it from the state of Washington, but if her grandson was the closest survivor, he may have not known her parents names
-The death certificates of her children may list her maiden name.
-Obituaries for her parents or the Alvords. You can browse the California death index for 1905-1939 at familysearch
Here is the page for the Alvord's
https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-1971-26179-9659-52?...
Henry Alvord died on January 25, 1918
Marcia Alvord died on April 4, 1919
There may not be obits in the LA paper, but you may get lucky.

Re: ??? 1864 Chatham Birth Mystery

Posted: 12 Aug 2012 12:10AM GMT
Classification: Query
Hmm... Yes, it is quite possible her death certificate wouldn't help as she did outlive her children.
It is a good idea to pursue her children's though. I will get on with that.

Also, thanks for sending the Alvords in the death index, it's helpful to confirm when exactly they died.

Thanks a bunch!
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