52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks – Week 8

This weeks prompt in the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks is “Heirloom.”  Our family never did practice the tradition of passing something down from generation to generation.  We did however, practice the tradition of ‘Hairloom.”  You know, the tradition of saving a locket of hair during a babies first haircut.

That first haircut can be really traumatic.  I’m almost 6 years older than my brother, and I vaguely remember going to the barber shop with our mom when he got his first hair cut.  He had a head full of red ringlets and being the trooper he is, he never cried.

Other world cultures have their own beliefs about “Hairloom.”

Read here:  First Haircut 1

Or here: First Haircut 2

Our family will still just keep the Baby Book with the little ringlet of curl, just can’t find the books.

People have gotten creative with saving baby hair.  I really like this one.


Sun Catcher


You can find it here on Etsy here:

Sun Catcher

Dirty Rotten Scoundrel

According to the Lubbock Morning Avalanche (Lubbock, Texas)  on· 30 Aug 1934, Governor, Mariam A Ferguson on 29 Aug 1934 pardoned 6 inmates.  Leon O Steed, who was convicted in Angelina County in January, 1934 and sentenced to one year, received a full pardon.

Leon O Steed was born on 10 Oct 1891 in Sulphur Springs, Hopkins County, Texas.  He was married at least 3 times.  First to Eva Mae Fears on 4 Jan 1926 in Lamar County, Texas.  It appears not to have lasted very long because he married Viola Mae Fowler on 10 Oct 1927 in Collins County, Texas.  This marriage failed as well.  Viola married Oscar Killian on 24 Dec 1928 in Lubbock County, Texas.

Sometime between 1930 and January of 1934, Leon O Steed married Meady “Oates” Nerren, widow of Benjamin Holt Nerren.  This marriage also ended abruptly, but this time because of the untimely death of Meady on 27 Aug 1934 in Lufkin, Angelina County, Texas.

Leon didn’t take long to petition the Governor for an early release.  He claimed in his petition that he needed to care for his newly deceased wife’s young children.   It appears that the Governor’s office accepted the assertion from a known criminal at face value.

The issue is that Meady didn’t have young children.   She had 5 daughters, 4 of which were already married and a 16 year old daughter, Bernice.  Bernice was living with her grandmother in 1930, and most likely in 1935 as well.  By 1940, Bernice was living in the Austin State School in Austin, Travis County, Texas where she died in 1948 of  tuberculosis.

Leon was living in Springfield, Green County, Missouri in 1935 and De Queen, Sevier County, Arkansas in 1940.  By 1942, he had returned to Texas, living in Fort Worth when he registered for the WWII draft.  He then made his way to Oklahoma and died in October, 1949 and is buried in an unmarked grave in Chickasha, Grady County, Oklahoma.


52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks – Week 7

This weeks prompt in the #52Ancestors in 52 Weeks challenge is Valentine.  I had already posted for this week, however, the Valentine’s Gift I received this morning is worthy of another.

I have a ritual every morning.  Turn on the coffee pot and scream at it for not brewing fast enough.  Sometimes I pour a cup after it’s brewed half a pot.  Today was one of those days.  Coffee in hand, I boot up the laptop, check Ancestry for any new DNA matches in hopes to break down the last remaining brick walls and then I check email.

My email had about 10 from one of my cousins.  I checked the subject line first to see what she was sending.  This was the 1st email I looked at:


This is my Great Grandfather and Great Grandmother, Mathias Schumacher and Mary Timlin.  I had never seen a picture of them before.

Julia, standing on the left with attitude, Mathias, Edward, Mary, Margaret (my grandmother), Helen, Susie and baby Frances.  I suspect this might be the only picture of Frances.  She died on 14 Nov 1899 at the age of 6 months.

Another cousin and I have been discussing our DNA connection to the Timlin family.  She had always been told that her grandmother, Nora Timlin had been an orphan, with no family.  Well we have proved that to not be true.  A picture speaks a 1000 words.  This was the 2nd email I opened.

Timlin siblings.jpg

This is a picture of Nora Timlin and 4 of her 6 siblings and here they are.

Nora Timlin – Top Left
Margaret Timlin – Top Right
Julia Timlin – Bottom Left
Mary Timlin – Bottom Right (My great grandmother)
Thomas Timlin – Center
Happy Valentine’s Day to all.

52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks – Week 7

This weeks prompt in the 52 Ancestors in 52 Week challenge is ‘Valentine.’  
 Mabel Lee Munroe was my great aunt. She was born in Lufkin, Angelina County Texas on January 20, 1923 and died on April 1, 1978, in Los Angeles County. She married the love of her life on December 24, 1943, Donald McDonald. He was a private in the United States Army during WWII. Unfortunately, he died on the battlefield on July 14, 1944. All of the stories I heard about her, she was extremely distraught over his death and became a recluse. Then today the whole situation was turned upside down. It appears that Mabel had an unknown relationship with a man by the name of Gordon Eugene Flanagan, they had a son in 1957 and then had a daughter in 1960. Since Mabel was unable emotionally to care for a child at this time, Gordon put his newly born daughter up for adoption. Gordon died in 1964 and as a result, the son he had raised was also put up for adoption.
Not all love stories on Valentine’s Day ends with balloons, red roses and a box of chocolate.

A Murder on Thanksgiving Day 1936

David W Raleigh “Rollie” Munroe was the father in-law of my mom’s paternal grandmother, Artie Rether Freeland.  He was a victim of homicide on Thanksgiving Day, 1936.  According to his death certificate, he died of blunt force trauma, causing a concussion and subdural hemorrhaging.  His daughter, Bonnie Riggs was the informant.  He was buried in Inglewood Park Cemetery, Inglewood, Los Angeles County in an unmarked grave on December 3, 1936.

According to news reports that follow, Robert Hayes was accused of beating Munroe in the head with an iron pipe after Munroe accused him of stealing one of his chickens.  Munroe was left for dead in an empty lot near Munroe’s residence in Los Angeles.  When Munroe’s body was discovered, he was holding an open knife in his hand.   When the police arrested Robert Hayes, his shirt was torn and he had a gash in his left side.

The coroner held an inquest on Wednesday, December 2, 1936 and they rendered their verdict that he be held for investigation.

Robert Hayes went to trial in February of 1937 on the charge of murder.  It was a landmark case in that it was the first trial in California history where a “Sound Film” was presented to the jury during trial.

The jury in the trial of People vs Robert Hayes rendered their decision on Tuesday, February 9, 1937 with a verdict of guilty of manslaughter.

Robert Hayes was sentenced to up to 10 years in San Quentin.  His intake date was March 13, 1937.  Shortly there after, he filed an appeal of conviction.  The appellate court upheld the conviction.  He then appealed to the State Supreme Court and they also upheld the conviction while rendering the following comment, “the use of sound motion pictures is not only legal but in the interest of justice.”

He died on July 13, 1940 while in San Quentin.   Cause of death is unknown.

Robert Hayes.jpg


The Los Angeles Times (Los Angeles, California) · 03 Dec 1936, Thu · Page 21

David W Raleigh "Rollie" Munroe Murder - which-will " Inquest Jury Gives Verdict in...

The Los Angeles Times (Los Angeles, California) · 04 Dec 1936, Fri · Page 25

David W Raleigh "Rollie" Munroe Murder - Stains on Mans Hands Result in Charge of Murder...

The San Bernardino County Sun (San Bernardino, California) · 05 Feb 1937, Fri · Page 1

David W Raleigh "Rollie" Munroe Murder - (Bv Assoc luted Tress) LOS ANGELES, Feb. 4.-A...

David W Raleigh "Rollie" Munroe Murder - SOUND PICTURE (Continued from Page One) Patton....

Oakland Tribune (Oakland, California) · 05 Feb 1937, Fri · Page 12

David W Raleigh "Rollie" Munroe - V. 'fJ ir i f MM $ . VA if" - ik $Ki HiAff f ih...

Oakland Tribune (Oakland, California) · 05 Feb 1937, Fri · Page 12

David W Raleigh "Rollie" Munroe Murder - (V i - rJ -tv rs. If A p 1 - " 7nQ AMr.n r5 FpK...

The Los Angeles Times (Los Angeles, California) · Wed, Feb 10, 1937 · Page 23


The Los Angeles Times (Los Angeles, California) · 09 May 1937, Sun · Page 127

David W Raleigh "Rollie" Munroe Murder - In the case of the People vs. Rohert Hayes,...

The Los Angeles Times (Los Angeles, California) · 10 Jun 1937, Thu · Page 9

David W Raleigh "Rollie" Munroe Murder - Motion Picture Confessions Upheld Use of motion...

The Los Angeles Times (Los Angeles, California) · 10 Jul 1937, Sat · Page 9

David W Raleigh "Rollie" Munroe Murder - 0lfD FILMS IN JURE TRIALS UFlLD M SUPREME COURT...

52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks – Week 6

This weeks challenge is “Favorite Name.”   I will need to go back the the early 1800’s to find my favorite name.

My 4th great grandparents were John Nerren (1800-1852) and Elizabeth Mooney (1806-1876.)  They had 10 known children, 6 males and 4 females.   Their names were typical of the era;  Benjamin Franklin, George Washington, William, James, John, Sarah, Mary, Eliza, Margaret and then that one person with a name that didn’t fit in.  That person’s name was Lorenzo Dow Nerren (1832-1916), my 3rd great grandfather.

Where did that name come from?  Well, after a Google search, it became very apparent.  He, along with 1000’s of men of his generation, were named after Lorenzo Dow, “an eccentric itinerant American evangelist, said to have preached to more people than any other preacher of his era. He became an important figure in the Second Great Awakening and a popular writer. His autobiography at one time was the second best-selling book in the United States, exceeded only by the Bible. ” (Note 1)

Carlisle Weekly Herald (Carlisle, Pennsylvania) · Wed, May 28, 1834 · Page 1





Note 1:  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lorenzo_Dow