Lauretta Eldridge & Children


This is one of my favorite family photographs, circa 1950.  This is my grandmother, Lauretta Frances Eldridge (b. 3 Sept. 1909, d. 13 April 1989) with her three children. Lauretta was married three times.  Lauretta first married Harold Aitken and together they had a daughter named Gertrude Aitken (married name Caggiano).  Later, Lauretta married her second husband Harold John Gleason (b. 1898- d. 1971).  Together they had two children; a daughter, Pauline Gleason (b. 1944) (married name Naoum) and a son, John Cavill Gleason (b. 1947- d. 1967), who was known as Cavill.  Harold also had five daughters from a previous marriage, which my grandmother cared for while they were married.  In 1957, Lauretta married her final husband, Cornelius Michael Lynch (b. 1923- d. 1987), “Neil”.

Macedonian Conditions in 1906

Stumbled across this Google Book today; Official Documents Concerning the Deplorable Condition of Affairs in Macedonia published in 1906.  Not for the faint of heart.  Details horrendous activities taking place in Macedonia at the turn of the century. My ancestors emigrated in 1920; this description of conditions at the time may help to explain why they left for America.  I was surprised to see “Naoum” listed in so many places of the document, as to date I have only seen the spelling as “Naum” in very old documents.

The Pride of Islington

One of our family tree mysteries; this photograph, found with my maternal grandmother’s (Lauretta Eldridge) belongings.  No names on the back of the photograph, but someone wrote across the top; “The Pride of Islington”.  Could be relatives from Lauretta’s Eldridge, Morrissey or Cavill heritage?  I would love to discover who they are!

The Pride of Islington
The Pride of Islington

Here is another image, possibly featuring three of the same individuals and looks to be taken around the same time.  This one is dated October 7, 1917.  Could this be my grandmother Lauretta (she would have been 8 in 1917, and this child looks to be about 8).  Perhaps in the above photograph, she is seated on her grandmother’s lap?  Her grandmother, Elizabeth (Morrissey) Eldridge would have been 55 years old in 1917.  For the longest time I thought Islington referred to England, but I have recently learned that Elizabeth’s daughter Mildred lived in Westwood, MA, and there is a neighborhood in Westwood called Islington!  This could be a photograph of Elizabeth with her daughter Mildred Frances (Eldridge) Prescott b. 4 Oct 1899 (Standing with the hat on) and some of Elizabeth’s grand-daughters.

Islington Ancestors
Islington Ancestors
Islington Girls
Islington Girls

Dimitreas Family of Kardamilli Greece

scan0042Sitting on this donkey is my great-grandmother, Anastasia Dimitreas Spileos b. 1893 in Kardamilli Greece – d. 1965 in Boston, Massachusetts, USA.  Anastasia emigrated to the U.S.A. in 1913.  This photograph was taken during a trip to Greece to visit family, possibly 1955.  It is believed from the strong resemblance, that she is photographed here with her brother Panagioti, and a sister (Mary or Helen).  Anastasia’s husband Evangelos Spileos, b. 1881 Louka Tripoli Greece – d. 1946 in Boston, MA, USA,  is believed to be deceased at the time of this trip and not photographed.


I would love to find the names of these relatives and the location where the photographs were taken.


Old Auntie Burgess

Elizabeth M. Morrissey (b. Oct 1862 in Harbour Grace Newfoundland) with son Francis William Eldridge (b. 11 Feb 1889 – d. 21 May 1976) and “Old Auntie Burgess”.  Auntie Burgess is believed to be Ann Cavill (Sister to Sophia Cavill, who was Elizabeth’s mother).  Photo taken about 1890.  Elizabeth would be about 28.

Kotta and Kottas from Macedonia

Searching for ancestors and descendants of the Kottas / Kotta family.  The family sailed from the Port of Piraeus on board the S.S. Megali Hellas, and arrived in New York City, New York on April 22, 1920.  On the ship manifest are;

Ioannis Kottas, age 39 years

Viktoria Kotta, age 25 years (his wife)

Naoum Kottas, age 6 years (their child)

Soultana Kotta, age 18 years.  [listed as their child, but believed to be sister to Ioannis]

They list their nationality and race as Greek, their last permanent address as Florina, Greece, and their place of birth as Tyrnevan Servia.

All four are listed as able to read and write in Greek.  Ioannis’ occupation is listed as “shoemaker”, Naoum’s as “scholar”, and both Viktoria and Soultana are listed as “housewife”, even though the manifest makes clear that Soultana is unmarried.

The family states their destination is Ioannis’ brother, Periclis Kottas, 23 Wall Street Boston Mass.

On the same ship, on a differant page of the manifest are listed;

Stavros Kottas, age 33

Ourania Kottas, age 26 (his wife)

Stavros states that his brother Pantelis is still living in Salonica.  Their destination is his brother, Periclis Kottas, as listed above.  They list their place of birth as as Salonica Greece.

Also on board is the Kondyli / Kondylis family.  It is believed that Constantina Kondyli is Ioanni’s sister.

After settling in the US, the Kottas family name changes to Naoum, and the Kondyli family name changes to Condell.

On later applications for social security numbers, the family states their name, birth, names of parents and places of birth as follows;

Periclis Naowm, b. 1893, Monastir Serbia, to parents Kotas Naoum and Chrysanthe Anne

Soltana Kottas Butcaris, b. 1902, Turkey, to parents Naowm Kottas and Santa Anney

Peter Naoum, b. 1896, Monastir Macedonia Turkey, to Nahum N. Kotas and Santa Anni

Stavros Naoum, b. 1887, Monastir Turkey, to Nahum Kottas and Chrysanthy Anna

The mother and father to Ioannis, Stavros, Periclis, Peter and Sultana did not come to America.  According to living descendants of the Kottas line, the father’s name was Naum and the mother’s name was Santa.  Naoum was a widower with three daughters (Constance, Virginia and Blaga) when he met Santa.  Santa was also a widow and had one son (Pandu).  Another family name may have been Gegas.  Naum and Santa lived in Monastir, on the outskirts of what is today known as Bitoli Macedonia.  Naum was the caretaker of a Greek Orthodox Church.  According to descendants who visited the area back in the 1980s, the village had been destroyed during war and only the church still stood.

Joseph Schneider of Algers Dorf Austria

Updated 8 April 2015

1857– Joseph Schneider is born in Algers Dorf, Austria on 2 July 1857 to parents Frank and Theresa Schneider.

1881-At age 23 Joseph leaves Austria for the United States of America.  He arrives in New York City, New York on 4 June 1881.

1881-Just fifteen days later, on 19 June 1881, Joseph is in Quincy, Massachusetts, marrying Johanna (Spelling of Johanna’s last name varies on records, appearing as Moser, Measar, Mearsee, Marcy, Maher).  Johanna, also 23, is the daughter of Florian and Theresa.  Joseph’s occupation is listed as stone cutter.

Joseph and Johanna’s marriage record and the birth records for their first four children states they were both born in Germany.  The record for their 5th and 6th child states they were both born in Austria.  The record for their 7th child states father born in Austria and mother born in Germany.  Birth record for their 8th is not yet obtained.

Joseph and Johanna settle in Quincy, Massachusetts and go on to have eight children (spelling of children’s names is taken for birth records).

1882– Joseph and Johanna’s first child Minnie Sneider is born 6 January 1882 in Quincy, Massachusetts.  Joseph’s occupation is granite cutter.

1883– Joseph and Johanna’s second child Annie Sneider is born 18 March, 1883 in Quincy, Massachusetts.  (Birth record lists father as Charles?).  Father listed as granite cutter.

1884– Joseph and Johanna’s third child Emma Sneider is born 29 November, 1884 in Quincy, Massachusetts.  Father listed as granite cutter.

1886– Joseph and Johanna’s fourth child (first son) Frank Snyder is born 14 December 1886 in Quincy, Massachusetts.  Father listed as stone cutter.

1893– Joseph and Johanna’s fifth child Joseph Adolph Schneider is born 13 June 1893 in Quincy, Massachusetts.  (52 West St. Quincy, MA)

1896– Joseph and Johanna’s sixth child Bertha Johanna Schneider is born 22 September 1896 in Quincy, Massachusetts.  Joseph’s occupation is stone cutter (52 West St. Quincy, MA).

1897– Joseph and Johanna’s seventh child Rudolph Schneider is born 5 August 1896 in Quincy, Massachusetts

1889-On 24 October 1889 Joseph is naturalized as a United States citizen in Quincy, Massachusetts.  In it, he renounces allegiance to Francis Joseph, Emperor of Austria and lists his birthplace as “Algers Dorf, Austria”.  His occupation continues to be listed as stone cutter on the children’s birth records, on census records and on his naturalization form.

1899– Joseph and Johanna’s eighth and final child Albert J Schneider is born 25 May 1899 in Quincy, Massachusetts.

1900– Joseph (42) and Johanna (41) are enumerated in the U.S. Federal Census.  They are living at 52 West St. Quincy, Massachusetts with all eight of their children.  Minnie M. (18), Annie G. (17), Emma (15), Frank (13), Joseph A. (6), Bertha J. (4), Rudolph (2) and Albert (1).  Joseph is working as stonecutter.

1906– Joseph and Johanna’s daughter Wilhelmina (Minnie) Schneider (24) marries Dennis Murphy (25) on 28 November 1906 in Quincy, Massachusetts.  He was born in Ireland to parents Timothy Murphy and Ellen Fitzpatrick.  Dennis’ occupation is stone cutter, Minnie’s is a dressmaker.

1910– Joseph (52) and Johanna (52) are enumerated in the U.S. Federal Census.  Six of their children are still living at home.  Annie (26), Emma (24), Joseph (16), Bertha (14), Rudolph (12), Albert (10).  Annie, Emma and Joseph are all working at a shoe shop.  Annie is a stitcher, Emma is a packer and Joseph is a cutter.  Joseph is working as a granite cutter.

1910– Joseph and Johanna’s daughter Minnie M. is enumerated in the U.S. Federal Census at 12 Willard St. Quincy.  Minnie (28) is living with her husband Dennis Murphy (29).  Dennis was born in Ireland and immigrated in 1896.  They have been married three years and have two sons; Timothy (2) and Joseph (1).  Dennis’ occupation is a granite stone cutter.

1914– WWI begins.

1918– Joseph and Johanna’s son Rudolph L. Schneider completes the WWI Draft Registration Card on 24 August 1918.  He is living at 25 Buckly St. Quincy, Massachusetts with his wife Esther.  Rudolph lists his father as from “Austria-Hungary”.

1918– Joseph and Johanna’s son Albert Joseph Schneider completes the WWI Draft Registration Card on 12 September 1918.  He is living at 156 West St. Quincy, Massachusetts.  He is working as a stone cutter (Bethlehem Shop).  He has blue eyes and brown hair.

1920– Joseph (63) and Johanna (62) are enumerated in the U.S. Federal Census.  They are living at 156 West St. Quincy, Massachusetts with their son Albert who is 20.  Albert is single and working as a pipe fitter in the shipyard.  They speak English and can read and write.  Joseph is working as a “Park Laborer”.  They own their home, free of mortgage.

1920– Joseph and Johanna’s son Rudolph is enumerated in the U.S. Federal Census on 10 January 1920 at 25 Buckly St. Quincy, Massachusetts where he rents.  He is 22 and works as a stitcher at a shoe factory.  His wife Esther is 21 and was born in Massachusetts.  They have a 13 month old son named Roy.  Curiously, they both list their parents as Swedish.

1920– WWI ends

1921– Joseph and Johanna’s son Albert Joseph Schneider marries Irene Louise Gaynor in Quincy, Massachusetts.

1923– Joseph Schneider dies in Quincy, Massachusetts.

1930– Johanna (72) is enumerated at 227 West Street Quincy, Massachusetts.  She is living with her daughter Minnie M. Murphy (48) who is a widow, working as a coat maker in a factory.  Also living in the house is Johanna’s grandson (Minnie’s son) Timothy Murphy (22) working as a shoe worker in a shoe shop and his wife Gertrude (19) and their daughter Mary F. who is three months old.  Also present are Joseph (21) working as a stage builder at Fore River and Dennis (18) working as a barber, Anna (17), John (14), Frank (10), and Leo (9).

Research Questions:

  1. Where is Algers Dorf?
  2. On what ship did Joseph travel to America?
  3. Did Johanna travel to America with Joseph?  The arrival of their first child so soon after marriage may indicate that they came to America together.
  4. How did Joseph obtain a job of stone cutter so quickly? Did he have connections or family already in Quincy?
  5. Was Johanna naturalized?
  6. Visit- Quincy museum, quarry, stone cutters monument
  7. Quincy Quarry Museum:
  8. Obtain death record and obituary for Joseph (Obtain Death Record; NEHGS Vital Indexes 1923 Vol 69, pg 389).
  9. Obtain birth record for 8th son Albert Schneider
  10. Obtain death record and obituary for Johanna

Sources Used:

  1. U.S. Naturalization Records
  2. Massachusetts Vital Records (Marriage, Birth)
  3. US Federal Census Records (1900, 1910, 1920 and 1930)

Jerry Robetoye / Jerry Robitaille (Updated 2/8/2015)

This is a photograph of Jerry Robetyoye who was born March 15, 1846 in Canada.  He married a woman named Lovina Secor (Or possibly Decor or Secov – Her name was obtained from their son’s birth certificate and is not very legible).  She was also born in Canada.  Jerry and Lovina had a son Louis L. Robitaille, born February 12, 1902 in Massachusetts.

On Civil War Pension Form and in New Bedford Massachusetts City Directories; Jerry’s last name is spelled “Robetoye”. The 1920 US Census lists him as a widower, living with his son Louis.  It says that he speaks French and was naturalized in 1896.

Jerry died January 30, 1928 and is buried at Rural Cemetery in New Bedford, MA.

Jerry Robetoye

Eldridge Family from Denmark

Searching for the ancestors of a Peter Eldridge, born March 1819 in Copenhagen Denmark, father’s name is John, mother’s name is unknown.  Date of immigration to the United States is unknown, but had to be before 1854.  Peter settled in Boston and worked in the shipping industry.