Part 703d – Brunhammer Doherty Genealogy – Is Greta Actually Margaret? – And, Were There Eleven Dohertys?

02 June 2012

Good Day,

In my genealogy hunt for the offspring of gg-grandparents Philip and Margaret (née Doherty) Doherty, all-things-being-equal, I can only go by the "11" children as listed as credited to gg-grandmother Margaret (née Doherty) Doherty in the 1900 US Census.

According to the 1900 US Census taken in Wilmington, it enumerated and noted that great-grandmother Margaret Dougherty (aka Doherty) had had 11 children. At the point of time when the 1900 US Census was taken, on 2nd of June 1900, six of her children were still living and they were listed as: "Gerrold, Margaret, Fannie, Mary, Lizzie, and Katie".

1900 US Federal Census, Delaware, New Castle County,
Wilmington Hundred, Wilmington City, 2 June 1900.

I am almost convinced that great-grandaunt Greta was great-grandaunt Margaret.

And here is my logic... 1. Greta is NOT listed in the 1900 US Census.

2. Margaret is listed in the 1900 US Census. Her birth month and year are listed as December 1869, and her age is given at 30 years.

3. Greta is a diminutive form of Margaret, of which Greta is a nickname.

4. Greta's 2nd November 1950 Death Certificate has her birth date, as informed by her sister Catherine Doherty, as December 23, 1871. There is a possibility that great-grandaunt Catherine may not have provided the exact day and year of great-grandaunt Greta (née Margaret)'s birth date.

5. Margaret's Baptism Registration from St. Peter's Register of Baptisms records her birth data as 22 December 1869.

6. The family moved from St. Peter's to St. Paul's just after St. Paul's was established in 1869. St. Paul's was established on around 20 December 1869.

All-things-being-equal, and of course this could change, I would tend to believe, based on the above logic, that Greta was actually Margaret.

I have been examining available documentation that is uniquely different, available for Greta versus Margaret. And as I note that if Greta is Margaret, which is highly likely, then there should be another child, an additional one to make the total 11.

As things went, it would appear that whoever provided the information to the enumerator when he (or she) knocked at the door in June of 1900, s/he, the Doherty providing the information, may have had first-hand knowledge of the existence of 11 children. There were 7 persons listed as living at the house: gg-grandmother Margaret; her six living children, and grandfather Gerald. If the enumerator came during the day to take the Census information I would presume the majority of the six were more than likely at work and grandfather Gerald may have been at school as he would have been about 6 or 7 years old. There is a great possibility that it was gg-grandmother Margaret who may have provided the enumerator with the information.

All-things-being-equal, I would tend to believe that great-grandaunt Frances may have been the "Fannie Annie" who listed in the St, Peter’s Register of Baptisms. It is too coincidental regarding the dates and the fact that, and I believe, she was known as "Aunt Fannie". Fannie is a definitive diminutive of the name Frances. I just think it may have been a case of the Priest getting his bookkeeping done and in the process he may have put down what he "remembered".

This is sort of the same situation as the Greta versus Margaret and the Doherty versus Dougherty spelling issues. Note also that the enumerator listed both great-grandfather and grandfather as "Gerrod" versus their correct names "Gerald".

When it comes to research I have found three things that are usually all over the place - spellings of names, dates of birth, and years of immigration. Putting everything in place, I usually accept all names as I see them. I enter the first found occurrence of a name on the first document I come across into my genealogy database. As I find subsequent spellings and iterations of the name I add them to my database in the section "Also known as".

And now, if great-grandaunt Greta is great-grandaunt Margaret then I am still searching for the 11th Doherty sibling. Who knows whom I may find?

Stay tuned and enjoy,



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