#35 Mildred Wade Bolt

(52 Ancestors #35 – School Days)

Mildred Wade was the wife of my 1st cousin 4x removed, William I. Bolt. She was born July 22, 1856 in Hillsdale, Michigan. Both her parents died by 1870 and she went to live with her grandmother in Geneva, Ohio. In 1877, she married William I. Bolt in Jackson, Michigan. William was my great-great-great grandfather William D. Bolt’s nephew and the son of Isaiah Bolt. William was a plumber and Mildred was a teacher of elocution in Detroit. They lived at 1191 Jefferson Ave. In 1888, she founded the Detroit School of Expression and became its principal.

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Various ads from the Detroit Free Press

In what must’ve been the annual back-to-school issue on Wednesday, August 29, 1906, the Detroit Free Press devoted a large section to “Schools and Colleges of the Northwest.” The paragraph describing Mildred’s school is as follows:

Mrs. Mildred A. Bolt, principal of the Detroit School of Expression, is not only a teacher of the highest ability, but she possesses those invaluable qualities of earnestness and enthusiasm which seem to be transmitted to her pupils, inspiring them to greater diligence and higher aims.

Mrs. Bolt studied elocution with Prof. Moses True Brown, of Boston; attended lectures under Prof. S. H. Clarke, at Chicago University and graduated from the Detroit Training School, where she studied under Mrs. Edna Chaffee Noble.

Under her immediate direction is a staff of highly efficient teachers, who assist her in conducting the classes in elocution, English literature, Delsarte, philosophy, Shakespearian study, voice training, dramatic reading, criticism, physical culture, deportment and general literature.

Five new teachers will be added to the faculty this year, making it possible to give an increased amount of personal attention to each student. The Detroit School of Expression is located in one of Detroit’s finest residence sections, 1191-1195 Jefferson avenue, and was established by Mrs. Bolt in 1888.

William died at the age of 50 in 1907. Mildred’s home continued to be at 1191 Jefferson until at least 1920. Mildred was well-known in Detroit society and was involved in the Detroit Shakespeare Club. She died of uterine cancer on July 24, 1922 at 3578 Joseph Campau, which was the home of Dr. and Mrs. Siefert. Louise Siefert was the Secretary-Treasurer of the school. I’m glad Mildred had a friend to go to at the end.

Ad for the school after Mildred’s death lists her as the founder

Mildred and William were buried in Detroit’s Woodlawn Cemetery.

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From the Detroit Free Press, July 27, 1922

#30 Fred L. Moore

(52 Ancestors #30 – Challenging)

A challenging ancestor to research has been Fred L. Moore, my great-great grandfather. The challenge came from a combination of misinformation and my own assumptions.

I first discovered his name from my great-grandmother Mae’s birth certificate. Then I found him in her marriage records. From there, I discovered his 1885 marriage certificate and the 1900 census in Plymouth, Michigan. After that came the confusion!

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Fred & Mina’s marriage registration, 9/10/1885

In the 1910 U.S. Federal Census, as mentioned in the previous post, Fred’s wife Mina was boarding with her daughter Mae at a place in Detroit. She was listed as married. In the 1910 Detroit City Directory, Mina was listed as a widow. This made me think that Fred had died in 1909ish. In 1918, she was listed as Bert Thompson’s wife on his WWI Draft Registration. However, I have Mina and Bert’s marriage certificate and it lists their marriage date as November 24, 1924 in Toledo, Ohio. Hmm. 6 years after she is first mentioned as Bert’s wife and in Ohio?

So I went another direction. I researched Mae’s brother, Glenn Bolt Moore. He was also called Fred and worked on the railroad like his father. He lived in New Buffalo, Michigan. Poking around on SeekingMichigan.org, I found Fred Moore’s death certificate with Glenn B. Moore listed as the informant. Fred didn’t die in 1909. In fact, he didn’t die until November 4, 1924. Which explains why his estranged wife didn’t remarry until late November 1924. They were, for lack of a better term, waiting for him to die.

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Fred Moore’s death certificate

Now that I knew Fred was living in Berrien County, I could narrow my searching. I found a few interesting newspaper articles detailing what he was up to in the 1910s and 1920s.

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He was selling grapes in 1919.
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He was visiting his sister in Illinois in 1920.
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In 1921, he lived on a cherry farm.

According to the March 22, 1923 issue of the Benton Harbor News-Palladium, Fred was a resident of the Berrien County Poor Home (also called the Berrien County Infirmary). According to Deanna West, “Through the years the farm became a colony within itself with orchards, vegetable gardens, corn and grain fields, barns, cows, chickens and pigs. Everyone who was physically capable did chores that they could manage. One couple that managed the farm in 1924 and several years after, were Mr. & Mrs. Edward Israel, who became very well known in the area.” On his death certificate, it notes that Fred died at the Berrien County Infirmary at the age of 61 of “chronic paresis” which is defined as “a condition typified by a weakness of voluntary movement” including limbs, eyes, stomach, or vocal cords. To add to the confusion, it says he is widowed, even though Mina didn’t die until 1942.

So I guess the moral of the story is don’t assume someone is dead just because a city directory says his wife is a widow!

Citations:

“20 Years Ago.” The News-Palladium (Benton Harbor, Michigan). 12 Nov 1940, Tue. Page 2.

Death Certificate for Fred Moore, Berrien County. http://seekingmichigan.contentdm.oclc.org/cdm/ref/collection/
p16317coll1/id/174162.

“For Sale – Grapes.” The News-Palladium (Benton Harbor, Michigan). 10 Sep 1919, Wed. Page 3.

“Michigan Marriages, 1868-1925”, database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:NQ3P-Z54 : 15 May 2018), Fred L. Moore and Minnie A. Bolt, 1885.

“Society.” The News-Palladium (Benton Harbor, Michigan). 28 Jul 1921, Thu. Page 4.

“Township and City Poor Supported at the County House.” The News-Palladium (Benton Harbor, Michigan). 22 Mar 1923, Thu. Page 9.

West, Deanna. (2010). “Berrien County Poor House aka Poor Farm — or — County Infirmary, Berrien County, Michigan.” http://berrien.migenweb.org/Infirmary/Infirmaryhistory.htm.

Wikipedia contributors. (2018, March 23). Paresis. In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved from https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Paresis&oldid=832006290.

 

 

A visit to Newburgh Cemetery

Newburgh Cemetery is an old cemetery located on Ann Arbor Trail in Livonia, Michigan.   Many members of my Everitt ancestors (and one Bolt that I know of) are buried in this cemetery.  Apparently, Everitts were early settlers in the area.    The cemetery dates from 1827, when Salmon Kingsley, a Revolutionary War veteran, was buried here.Salmon Kingsley

Above:  Tombstone of George Everitt (1778-1854), Uncle of my 4x Great-Grandfather George Baxter Everitt

Above: Elizabeth VanGordon Everitt (1786-1872), wife of Uncle George. Her sister Catherine married George’s brother Marshall.  They are buried in another Livonia Cemetery that I’ll talk about next time.

Isaiah Bolt

Above: Isaiah Bolt (1799-1856), my 4x Great-Grandfather.  His son, William Dillon Bolt, married the above-mentioned George Baxter Everitt’s daughter, Mary Jane Everitt in 1860.