Monday, January 28, 2008

Genealogue Challenge #115

Mary Fraser pointed me toward this obituary for actress Lois Nettleton.

What was her maternal grandmother's maiden name and when did she die?


Somewhat a guess on the maiden name: Julia McFall Schaffer died in Chicago on Dec 16, 1927. Lois was living with her widowed grandfather, Frank Schaffer, in 1930. In 1920, Frank's wife is Julia. The IL Marriage index lists a marriage for Frank Shaffer & Julia McFall in 1884.


According to wikipedia, Nettleton's parents were Edward and Virginia Nettleton.

A short bio on the web gives Virginia's maiden name as SCHAFFER.

This would be consistent with the 1930 census, which shows a young Lois listed as the granddaughter in the Chicago household of Frank SCHEFFER, District 1066, page 6B.

Frank is listed as age 63, widowed, with family Daughter Victoria age 27, son Raymond, age 21; Son Herbet age 47.

The 1910 Census lists the family as
W Frank, age 50; wife Julia, age 48; son Charles, age 20; daughter Julia, age 20; daughter Victoria, age 17; son Raymond, age 11; Sone Herbert age 7; grandson Francis, age 8 and granddaughter Marie age 6.

So, Julia's death is bracketed between the two censuses.......


You both are on the right track.

Here's a clue: Frank would not have been using the name "Schaffer" in 1884.


Frank Schaffer's obituary in the Chicago Tribune (6 Aug 1948) lists "late wife" as Julia Lamich Schaffer. I'm betting she is the Julia Schaffer in the IL Death index who died on 16 Dec 1927, although I can't seem to pull up an obit for her to verify. Also, a Trib obit for Frank's son Herbert on 3 Nov 1980 lists Lois Nettleton as a surviving neice.


Can anyone confirm the date, and figure out what the family's surname was before it was changed to "Schaffer"?


1910 Census, Cook County, Chicago Ward 34, District 1479, page 10B
Lines 54-62 has our family Frank, wife Julia, Children Frank, Charlie, Mamie, Julia, Victoria and Raimond, with the last name of SZAFARCZYK.

FYI- the 1920 Census lists son Charles as Charles E.- I suspect that this may be Lois's father, as there is no Edward showing up in the immediate group.


You got the right family—it was the Szafarczyks.

Remember that this was the maternal branch of Lois' family. I suspect that Victoria was her mother.

Now, can you find more evidence that Julia died on 16 Dec. 1927?


In 1900, the family is recorded in
Cook County, Chicago ward 9, District 239, page 11B as SAFARCIK.
Frank, wife Julia,children Frank, Charles, Marion and Julia.

This Census notes Frank's immigration year as 1875. Julia is listed as having given birth to 8 children, 4 of whom are still living at the time of the census (Frank, Charles, Marion and Julia).

The Lamich family appears two families about the SAFARCIKS on this entry, so it seems likely that KAC has nailed that part of the question


Yeah, it was Julia Lamich. Her death notice in the Dziennik Chicagoski noted her maiden name.

Here's the "Lamek" family in 1880. The 1900 census shows that Julia had a younger sister named Victoria, for whom Lois' mother was probably named.


On a related note-the IL Marriage archive shows a marriage between Frances LAMICK and Frank CHEBIK May 10, 1898 in Cook County.

Their household is between that of the LAMICHS and the SAFARCIKS in the 1900 Census, so it appears that the extended family is all residing in the same house.

The LAMICH son Paul appears as the head of family 198 at the top of the page, the elder LAMICHS are family 199; the CHLEBIKS #200 and the SAFARCIKS are #201. The first three families reside at #56; our SAFARCIKS are across the street at # 57.


Your Dzennik Chicagoski indices also show a marriage record for
Szafarczyk, Frank to
Lancik, Julia
10-25-1892 St. Adalbert Church

which is not inconsistent with their having 4 living children in the 1900 census.

Going back to the IL death index, those 4 deceased children may include:


Nice catch!

Linda Kush

I am really impressed with you folks. Julia Lamich was my grandmother's sister (I'm second or third cousin of Lois Nettleton; never met her). It took me months to figure out what you assembled in a day.
One little correction tho. Those numbers in the 1900 Census are family numbers, not street numbers. The whole family, Szafarczyks, Chlebiks, and Lamichs lived at 638 W. 17 Place. That's 21 people. The Szafarczyks lived at 638R. I'm not sure if that was an apartment with a rear entrance or a smaller house built in the backyard. There was a lot of that in 19th Century Chicago.

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