Friday, September 21, 2012

Surname Saturday - Goodwin Brick Wall Comes Down

     Well my father sent me this picture a few months back. How it is that I didn't already have it? I don't know. We had gone through all the photo's years ago and I had made copies of everything. Or so I thought; it seems. Anyway this picture is of my Grandmother (Elva Irene Dennie) in the middle. I have written about her in previous blogs. In this photo she is pregnant with my dad's younger brother Vincent Ordel Goodwin. He was born Feb. of 1947 so this would be summer or early fall of 1946. With her on her right (left looking at the photo) is her younger brother and the God Father of Vincent; Ordel Dennie. On her left (right looking at the photo) is her husband John Francis Goodwin. Now my grandmother it turns out lived for herself and was out partying and hanging out with men (disappearing for months at a time). By the time she gave birth to her third child (my Aunt Orleen), John F. Goodwin had had enough. To this day we don't know for sure if he was Orleen's genetic father. Anyway since she wouldn't settle down and be a family member, John left. My grandmother put the kids in foster care and there they remained for years (until the government came out with Mother's Allowance), and then she got them back and tried settling down with Vic Boismier. Anyway my father and his sib's never new their natural father, John F Goodwin. The only info we have on him is found on the long form birth certificate of my father. We know from that, that he was born in Aurora, Illinois about 1908.  So this past month when Ancestry had free American Census viewing, I did a search. I have Ancestry for Canada but not the rest of the world yet. Low and behold I found him in the 1910 American Census in Cook County, Illinois with his Father John Goodwin, Mother Ella and new born brother Regis. I also sound him in the 1930 Census and his brother had moved out by then; and again in the 1940 census. In the 1940 Census his father is no longer there and he is head of household with his wife Madeline and mother. I see evidence of a death record for his father in 1937 but couldn't access it until I get the full Ancestry service.  His Father and mother are listed as being from New York previously. She born there to parents that came from Irish Gaelic background and he from Irish Gaelic background that moved to the USA. It gives us a picture showing where John was employed during those census' and his father as a Switchman for the railroads. This is the most we have known about him in all my years of asking family members. Now to get cracking through some more of this info. and see where it leads. Remembering When is easier when you have the facts and such.