Sunday, April 28, 2024

Monument for The Chinese Charitable and Benevolent Association of Newark

Among my grandfather's pictures was this image of a stone monument.

Stone monument.
"The Chinese Charitable and Benevolent Ass'n of Newark."

Inscribed on this stone are the words, "The Chinese Charitable and Benevolent Association of Newark." Chinese characters are below these words, but I do not read Chinese. (Translations welcome. Comment below.) Smaller upright stones appear in the background. This picture was probably taken in the 1940s or 1950s.

My grandfather lived in Newark, New Jersey. I asked various cemeteries in Newark if this stone was located on their grounds. No takers.

I queried FaceBook and was guided to East Ridgelawn Cemetery in Clifton, New Jersey. (Thank you M. J.)

An inquiry on the website of East Ridgelawn Cemetery confirmed that this monument is located there. Here is the contemporary appearance.

Those are indeed gravestones behind this larger memorial.

Short upright gravestones at East Ridgelawn Cemetery
in Clifton, Passaic County, New Jersey.

This section is located along the fenceline of Fenlon Boulevard where Pennington Avenue terminates.

Years ago I determined that East Ridgelawn Cemetery was the setting of another picture taken by my grandfather- the stone of Emerson Lambert Nichols (1913-1935).

My grandfather took pictures of people in this area of the cemetery.

If anyone has further insight into this monument or the people in these pictures, comment below.

Tuesday, April 16, 2024

Deadly Boating Accident 1909

John ODonnell was a paternal uncle of my grandmother. He resided in Bayonne, Hudson County, New Jersey.

From his gravestone, I had his date of death- September 3, 1909. He was nineteen when he died.

John O'Donnell
born July 9, 1890
Died September 3, 1909
Gravestone at Holy Name Cemetery in Jersey City, New Jersey

I found no death certificate in the New Jersey State Archives and no obituary in newspapers from Jersey City. The Bayonne Times newspaper for this time period was destroyed.

I expanded the search to include newspapers from all over. Newspapers in New York City and even Alabama carried articles about John's death.

John was employed as a deckhand on the tug boat R B Little. He was sleeping after working the night shift when his boat collided with another, bursting steam pipes. John awoke and attempted to escape the room in which he was sleeping. John was crushed and scalded. Accounts differ as to the timing of his death in relation to these traumas. The other man in the room, John Lavin, lived. I have not determined when he died.

Newspaper article from The Brooklyn Daily Eagle, describing John's death as instant

Newspaper article from The Sun detailing John's attempt at escape before being scalded to death

Vital records for New York City are online, but not all years are available yet. 1909 is among the ranges of unavailable years for death certificates. Online indexes list a death for John ODonnell for September 3, 1909.

New York City index of deaths
entry for John ODonnell, 1909.
Son of Patrick [ODonnell] and Delia [Joyce].

Monday, April 1, 2024

Happy Birthday Beryl

 April 1st is the birthday of my paternal grandfather's sister, Beryl.

Beryl as a toddler

Picture of Beryl with her mother and maternal grandparents circa 1930.

Beryl was born "Baby" Lutter in 1918 at Newark Beth Israel Hospital in Newark, Essex County, New Jersey. She was the second and final child of Howard Lutter (1889-1959) and Ethel Laurel "Laura" Winterton (1891-1962).

In 1935, a correction was filed amending the baby's name to Beryl Enid and the father's name from Harry to Howard.

Beryl married Harry Samuel Nanejian (1901-1986) in 1937 in Suffern, Rockland County, New York. They had one child and lived in Nutley, New Jersey.

Beryl as a young woman

Beryl's death certificate arrived from California. She died February 22, 1988 in Laguna Hills, Orange County. Her ashes were spread at Newport Beach. She received her memorial on Find A Grave.

Death certificate for Beryl Enid Nanejian, died February 22, 1989
in Laguna Hills, Orange County, California.
Processing time was two weeks. Cost was $24.
Ordered from California Department of Health.