52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks 2019 #1 – First

Thanks for joining me on this second year journey of family history stories. This week I am highlighting George Soule, the first recorded immigrant ancestor to America .

Here is where George fits into this family:

George Soule married Mary Beckett after arriving in 1620 in America on the Mayflower; daughter Susanna Soule who married Francis West; son William West who married Jane Tanner; son Benjamin West who married Elizabeth Smith; son Benjamin West Jr. who married Elizabeth Davis and served in the War for Independence or Revolutionary War. All these marriages and children, dates and places are recorded in the Mayflower history “silver books” and “pink books.”

The next generations are Joseph West who married Mary Ann Brock; daughter Adelia C. West who married Thomas Armsbury Kenyon; daughter Mary Salina Kenyon who married Edwin R. Squires who served in the Civil War; daughter Grace Irene Squires who married Robert Sidney Foreman; daughter Mary Frances Foreman who married Bernard Floyd Hancock and had seven children, Grace Evelyn (my mother), Pearl, Charlotte and Charlene (twins), Dorothy, Shirley and Robert Hancock.

Left to right is Mary Salina Kenyon Squires; Grace Irene Squires Foreman and Mary Frances Foreman Hancock.

;Back row Evelyn, Pearl, Charlene, Charlotte; front row Robert, Shirley and Dorothy Hancock.

The path west was Plymouth Colony in Massachusetts, to Hopkinton, Kings County, Rhode Island; to Verona, Oneida County, New York; Rock County, Wisconsin to Elbert, Elbert County, Colorado.

George Soule was a tutor to the children of Edward Winslow on the Mayflower and is listed as a freeman with his signature on the Mayflower Compact which is the document accepted by the colonists as their “constitution.”


52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks 2018 #52 – Resolution

My resolution for 2019 is to continue posting once a week “52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks.” Now that I have completed 2018, I feel it is important for those of you who are interested in family history to have a more complete understanding of who our ancestors are, where they came from and how they lived.

The truth is I have boxes and boxes of papers and photos and I will be scanning these documents to store on my computer rather than the closet, spare bedroom and garage.

If this topic is of no interest to you on a weekly basis or at all that is fine. Many people have no interest in ancestral history, but occasionally you may have a question or perhaps one of your children may be curious. Just contact me at casinger1@gmail.com to answer any questions.

My intent is to have the information available to share and accessible as a digital archive and my blog is the easiest way show you what I have.

If you do not use Facebook or may consider discontinuing Facebook you can follow and/or like the blog directly at Westernlady.wordpress.com. If you “follow” the blog then you will receive an email notification that a new post is available.

Thanks for following me for the last twelve months and I wish everyone a very happy and prosperous 2019!

52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks 2018 #51 – Nice

My husband’s aunt, Frances Elizabeth McMahon had a profound effect on my life. Settling in to a new family after getting married and leaving my home to live in St. Louis, Missouri was difficult. Aunt Francie was the type who never had time to listen to your complaints and woes, she lived in the here and now and was always encouraging you to move forward.

Aunt Francie had what I think was a very interesting life. Born in 1913, she was the oldest of three girls. Her father died when she was 13 years old.

Obviously a strong and independent woman for that time, Francie entered Harris Teacher’s College in St. Louis, graduating in 1934. She left St. Louis to teach in Hawaii.

Frances McMahon
Frances McMahon
Frances McMahon in center

Francie was the ultimate educator, she received her post graduate honors from Duke University and continued teaching as a reading specialist until her retirement. She never married.

She came to visit us when we lived in Colorado and we took her to the mountains to drive some of the jeep trails. On one very narrow road we had to come to a full stop to allow a bicyclist to ride around us. His wheel slipped on some rocks and he went down right next to the 4 wheel drive we were in and Francie reached out the window to help him up then offered him a marshmallow to feel better.

In all her words, in all her actions, Aunt Francie was a kind woman who loved life and everyone she met. She was a positive influence in the lives of her nieces and nephew and their children. She would engage everyone in lively conversation.

She died in 1994 after suffering a traumatic head injury when hit by a car. She donated her body for research, a gift for educating students.

52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks 2018 #50 – Naughty

To find a naughty ancestor isn’t easy! However the first ancestor that comes to mind would be my husband’s father, Samuel Brener Singer. I never met the man, he died in 1966 and I didn’t meet John until 1967.  I don’t think my husband considers himself to be like his father, but the stories I have heard over the last 50 years certainly provide me a clear picture of a link between the two.

Sam Singer was born April 9, 1915 in St. Louis.  He graduated from Soldan High School and was provided the opportunity to attend college but unknown to his father, decided instead to go to Washington D.C. where he served as an aide to a Missouri Congressman for several years.

Anne Renee Brener Singer and son Samuel Brener Singer

After returning to St. Louis, Sam and his brother Bill started the Royal Novelty Company which sold slot machines using  his political and business connections to develop a wide web.  Sam married and divorced during this time, later meeting Rosemary McMahon, converting to Catholic and marrying October 26, 1941 in Union, Missouri.

Rosemary and Sam Singer

Sam and Rosemary started their family with the birth of daughter Mary Ann in 1944, John in 1947 and Sally Frances in 1952.

Sam and Rosemary Singer with John and Mary Ann

Sam and his brother Bill went on to start Apex Photo Finishing, a film developing company which became the largest of it’s type in the mid-west.

As Apex continued its success, Sam and Rosemary traveled to Europe, visiting the Pope in Italy. In England Sam purchased the very large set of Wedgwood dishes for Rosemary that I have come to love. They cruised frequently to Acapulco and Cuba. They loved to entertain.

Sam and Rosemary’s Christmas Card displaying their winning costumes on a Cruise.

Not adverse to taking risks, Sam always had  a strong interest in the latest inventions and gadgets.

Sam and Rosemary in his helicopter

Bubble wrap!

Sam died suddenly of a heart attack in 1966 when he was 50 years old. Rosemary later re-married Art O’Hare and died in 1988 after a number of years suffering from Alzeimers, She was 67.

52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks 2018 #49 – Winter

Growing up in Colorado meant having as much fun in the winter as it did in the summer! The only difference was how you dressed. Having a large family helped because you always had someone to play with.

Dorothy, Shirley and Robert Hancock

This  photograph shows Dorothy, Shirley and Robert Hancock playing in a whopper of a snow drift!

This early photograph, below, of Bernard and Francis Hancock is quite interesting. It was taken just above the Moffat Tunnel where Bernard Hancock used to work. Sure makes me wonder what they were driving to get up there or maybe they were on the train!

Bernard & Frances above Moffat Tunnel -13

There was always work to do in the winter, and that hasn’t changed. This photo is my daughter at school in Lamar, training her horse.


Sometimes fun has to stay in the driveway. My husband had this Ford Mustang with a 5 litre engine, but it sure didn’t like snow packed streets and many winter days it stayed in the driveway. This is the 1982 snow storm at our home in Aurora, Colorado.

1983 Snow Storm with Mustang-44

We shoveled out the car and a path to our next door neighbors, the Witkops, and we all had a good time! John did go out and buy a Ford Bronco the next summer and a snowmobile, but we never had a storm like this again. Now he is never without a 4×4.

52 Ancestors In 52 Weeks 2018 #48 – Next To Last

How many times can I use “next to last” in this story.

Grace Irene Squires Foreman was my great grandmother. She was the youngest of six children. She had two sisters Frances Charlotte Squires Allen and Mary Ivadine Squires, who never married, and three brothers , Harvey Squires, Clarence Squires and Jesse Squires who was the next to last child of Edwin and Mary Salina Kenyon Squires.

Grace Irene Squires 005

Grace Irene Squires Foreman

Clarence, Harvy & Jesse Squires 1947

Brothers Harvey Squires, Clarence Squires and Jesse Squires

Jesse, the “next to last” child never married. Harvey and Clarence were widowers and the three brothers lived together in a house in Colorado Springs. I remember visiting them, we would sit out on the porch and drink lemonade and eat sugar cookies. They made the best sugar cookies.

Depending on what data base is used there are two different records for Grace Foreman’s death. Her grave headstone says 1932 but the Colorado state issued death certificate says 1933.

Robert Sidney Foreman

I remember my grandmother telling me that she was unable to attend her mothers funeral because she had just had a baby the week before. The baby was her “next to last” child Shirley Ruth Hancock Hedenskog, born March 6, 1933.

Then a couple of weeks ago, my cousin Kenneth who is the “next to last” child of Robert and Charlotte Hancock Lucero sent a picture to me and asked if I had any idea what the name badge in this picture represented.

FOREMAN, Grace Irene, Rebakah Badge 1932

Well, it just so happens that the obituary for Grace Irene Foreman from the Elbert newspaper indicated that Grace was a member of the Rebekah’s and when Grace died a special service prior to the church service was held to honor Grace Foreman as a contributing and active member of the Rebekah organization.

This badge was for the  October 17 – 19, 1932 Grand Lodge, Rebekah Assembly, Grand Encampment in Loveland, Colorado. So this is additional proof she did not die in March of 1932, but rather March of 1933.

Cause of death was from a paralytic ilieus or abdominal blockage as a result of surgery for fibroid tumors in her uterus. She was hospitalized from February 21 to March 12 at Presbyterian Hospital in Denver, where she died.


52 Ancestors In 52 Weeks 2018 #47 – Thankful

John and Birdie Brace-01

John Champion Brace and Mary Phoebe ‘Birdie’ Brace

New recipes for the holidays seem to dominate all the foodie blogs, and television shows. After all, it is the time of year when families try so hard to get together and share their blessings, so here are some of the old family contributions to the 1909, Common Sense Cook Book Of Tested Recipes From The Junior Aid Society And Their Friends, Presbyterian Church, Elbert, Colorado. Price 25 cents.

Hattie E. Totten – (Sister of Birdie Brace, 3rd Great Aunt)

Tomato Preserves – Select solid tomatoes, not too ripe (yellow ones are best) scald and remove the skins, make a small opening in each and squeeze out all the juice and seeds, throw these away using only the pulp, then to 1 lb. pulp add 3/4 c. granulated sugar, let stand still syrup forms, drain syrup off and boil until quite thick, then add tomatoes and boil until thick and rich.

Mrs. J. C. Brace – (Mary Phoebe ‘Birdie’ Totten Brace; 2nd Great Grandmother)

Popcorn Balls – 1 pt sugar, 1/2 c. water, boil until it will thread from a spoon or harden when dropped in cold water, pour the taffy over the popcorn, mix it thoroughly; butter or wet hands and press into balls.

Mrs. R. S Foreman – (Grace Irene Squires Foreman, Great Grandmother)

Buttermilk Pie – 1 c. buttermilk, 2/3 c. of sugar, 2 eggs and yolks of 2 eggs, leaving the whites for frosting, 2 level tbsp. cornstarch, 2 tsp. lemon after it is cooked.

Cinnamon Rolls – When putting bread into loaves cut off a piece, work all the lard you can into it and roll thin, spread with butter, sprinkle with sugar and then with cinnamon, cut in narrow strips and roll, place on a tin, spread top with butter, sprinkle with sugar and then with cinnamon, when they have raised bake about 20 minutes.

Miss Ivie Squires – (Sister of Grace Irene Squires Foreman; 2nd Great Aunt)

Apple Jelly for cake – Grate 1 large or two small apples, the rind and juices of a lemon, 1 c. sugar; boil three minutes; when cold it is good for any layer cake.

Mrs. Lulu Hancock –  (Mother of Bernard Hancock; Great Grandmother)

Potato Salad – Boil potatoes until cooked, slice thin, slice two onions in dish with potatoes, beat an egg pour half a cup of vinegar on egg and beat, then pour this over potatoes and onions, season with pepper and salt; let stand a short time, serve cold.

Leon Baber, Lulu Brace Hancock Baber, Bernard Hancock

Leon Baber, Lulu Pearl Brace Hancock Baber, Bernard Hancock

I double dare you, my cousins, to try one of these recipes!