Saturday, June 8, 2013

The Princess Plays Hard To Get-Part 3

     I'm still hot on the trail of the Wordens, but my focus has changed a bit.  Well of course it has, I'm as easily distracted as a four year old, hopped up on M&Ms. You know how it goes, you start searching for cousin Lucy and look!  Right there next to her obituary is an article about Uncle Michael from another family line getting hitched, so you start copying that wonderful find, when you discover the best man's name sounds very familiar so now you must check that out, and so on and so on...

    Long story short, I cannot find anything more than I already have on Pelina Cater Worden, not that I'm giving up, not a chance, I'm nothing if not tenacious.  That 1850 census showing her and her daughter Ruth in the household of her son Sylvester Jr. in South Bristol, NY got me thinking though; whatever happened to young Ruth?  She was only 14 in 1850 and by the time of the NYS 1855 census she and Pelina were nowhere in sight.  A family tree online says Pelina died in 1852, but as usual, with no real source.  Another tree, also un-sourced, claims Ruth Worden married a man named Richards.  I decided to try and prove or disprove that bit of datum.

     After analyzing census records gathered at Family Search and Ancestry in addition to those I copied years ago at the Ontario County Archives, along with news articles, I think Ruth did in fact marry William Richards around 1854.  Un-sourced trees aren't always wrong, it's just impossible to tell until you check for yourself.
Here is how I arrived at my conclusion--

In 1850 William was 21 and living with his parents Daniel and Elizabeth Richards.  Ruth Worden was living with her brother.

1855 Census, South Bristol, NY
In 1855 William was living with Ruth Richards age 18, (and Ruth Worden is not enumerated), so far so good, but wait, living with William's parents Daniel and Elizabeth are Mary E. Richards age 8 and George E. Richards age 9.  They are grandchildren, but their ages can't be right, William could not have a 9 year old, he was single just 5 years previous.

In 1860 the indication is that the children's ages were indeed wrong  in 1855.  George is now 10, born around 1850 and Mary is 6 born around 1854.  That makes more sense.  I think William was married, fathered 2 children and was widowed between censuses.  He must have been a fast worker, because he also has a son named William P. age 6 who must be the child of Ruth although I think he must have been 5 not 6.  If his first wife died when Mary was born and he turned right around and married Ruth I suppose they could have had a son aged 5 by 1860--it boggles the mind.

1875 Census, South Bristol, NY
     I couldn't find them in 1870, but in 1875 the household included William, 46 and Ruth, 36, along with Ellen M.,(Mary E. had turned into Ellen M.) age 19, William Jr. age 18, and two more children, Bert age 6 and Elizabeth age 3.  That's sorta curious, twelve years between children?  The census seems to say these youngsters are children of the marriage though, and Ruth was certainly still young enough to have been their mother.

     Ruth died in 1876 as shown in this obituary:  June 24 1876--—The wife of William Richards died Monday night at his place of his residence.   The 1880 census reflects this, William age 51 is living with Ellen M., 24 and William Jr. 23.  Willie Jr has his wife, 17 year old Althea living with them and Bert and Elizabeth are still there also, their relationship is not shown for some reason.

     This article from the Naples, NY newspaper pretty much clinches the deal though: William [P.] Richards, son of William and Ruth Worden Richards, died early Saturday morning at his home near Bristol Center, aged 54 years.

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