Monday, June 25, 2012

Boo's Baptismal Records Came In!

Boo's Baptismal Records Came In!
You're probably thinking, "Great! Awesome! Yay, Boo's baptismal records came in! Woo-hoo! Wait. Who the heck is Boo?"

Boo is my first great grandmother, my Gran's mom, a.k.a., Alice Florence (Vaughan) Truitt. I previously blogged about how she came to be known as Boo in Her Irish Eyes They Were a-Smilin'. I also blogged about her name Alice, and a little about her siblings and parents in Why Didn't You Name Me Alice?.

And the reason it's so important that her baptismal records came in is because I'm preparing my application to DAR and UEL [And maybe a few others as well cuz why not?]. Boo was born in 1881 in Port Bolivar, Texas ~ well before Texas started requiring birth records to be kept. Knowing that Boo was Catholic, I looked on, to see if I could find any church records online before resorting to ordering microfilm, and in their Texas, Births and Christenings, 1840-1981, collection [which is really a vague index] I found she had been baptized at St. Mary's Cathedral in Galveston, Texas, which was and still is just a ferry ride away from Port Bolivar, Texas.

With a quick phone call and a brief email request with just the identifying facts needed, within 24 hours, the FAN-tabulous archivist for the Catholic Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston emailed me that she had not only found my Boo's [Of course, she called her Alice Florence Vaughan cuz she's my Boo, not hers. I'm stingy like that.] baptismal record but the baptismal records of what looked like 4 of her siblings, all of them including my Boo were children of Daniel and Annie (O'brien) Vaughan. And she asked me if I wanted them as well. For free.

Well, duh. My Mama didn't raise no fool. [She wouldn't accept a donation, but I've some more requests for them in the future where, um, a donation will miraculously fall into the envelope with my new requests. Cuz I'll snail mail it instead of email it. I'm sneaky like that.]

Anywho. She, at the time, had also given me the names of Boo's siblings, and if you read my post about her name Alice, you'll recall that I'd found some of the naming patterns Annie had used in naming some of her children. And by "some" I mean I found the names she'd used from her husband's [Daniel's] family. And according to Annie's death certificate, her father was James, her mother's name isn't listed, and her place of birth is listed as Dublin, Ireland. The odds of me finding my Annie born in maybe Dublin, Ireland with a father maybe named James O'brien are slim to none. And Slim just left the room. No?

So, I had great hopes the names that were clearly not from Daniel's family were perhaps from her side of the family. And that perhaps when I began to search Irish records that I'd have some more names to help identify the right Annie O'brien.

Also? I knew that Annie had had 5 of 8 children still living in 1900. So, some kiddos had died by 1900. Who were they?

The Archivist had sent me the names in that glorious original email, and they were the following:

  • Vaughan, Henry Lewis (b.4/7/1878) 
  • Vaughn, James Cornel (bapt. 2/6/1876)
  • Vaughan, Viola Prudence (b.7/23/1883) 
  • Vaughn, Joanna Lennon (b.12/2/1887

I was familiar with everyone except James Cornel. So, I guessed that he was probably one of the kiddos that hadn't made it to 1900. But I was intrigued by his name. James? Well, if Annie's death certificate has the correct information about her father, than this James may have been named after him. But Cornel? Was this a family name from Annie's lines? The other names listed above that cannot be explained from Daniel's lines are:

  • Henry Lewis
  • Viola
  • Joanna Lennon [Although Joanna might be from Annie...]

Add to that my Boo's middle name Florence, and I might have some clues to help identify Annie in church records in Ireland. [A genea-girl can dream, you know.]

Of course, the names could've been picked out of a hat for all I know. However, my mom's lines tend to  be bogged down in naming patterns to the "nth degree." [Not complaining.] And Annie is Irish. And the Irish like to name kiddos after family. So who knows?

Now? After receiving the baptismal records, I have some answers.

And, of course, I have some more questions. [Cuz, duh. Dead people are quite questionable.]

Join me this week as I explore and blog their baptismal records and the information found therein.

But what do you think I found?



  1. A big find from a generous archivist! Congratulations. I'll bet you'll get into DAR and UEL (what it that? googled it but got unlikely hits) with no trouble. I do know what you mean about naming patterns--one of my ancestor lines followed them to the nth degree, too. So you have a new name, Cornel, that comes from somewhere . . .

  2. Yeah Boo! I mean, woot! woot! Boo! Gosh, I hope maybe you got God parents/sponsors on all those baptismal records. That'd be, well let's see...math at 5 in the morning...8 more people! Congrats, and can't wait to hear what you got. And, um, Archivists can really rock sometimes...just sayin'. ;-)

  3. Texans are nice folks. Great find, Caroline, and lots of fun to read about. Lucky you!

  4. Awesome find! Congrats! Um...I'm with Mariann. What's UEL? I've never heard of it.

    And congrats on being one step closer to DAR membership.

  5. Jana & Mariann, the UEL is the United Empire Loyalists society which makes my story that much more interesting. =)


    And, yes, Laura, y'all rock!


    Denise, thanks!



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