Sunday, January 18, 2009

Hague Happy Dance

Since I missed the deadline for the Winter Photo Essay, I'll jump right into the Feb 1st Carnival of Genealogy topic of "The Happy Dance." For those non-genealogists it means to write about "The Joy of Genealogy. Almost everyone has experienced it. Tell us about the first time, or the last time, or the best time. What event, what document, what special find has caused you to stand up and cheer, to go crazy with joy?"

The big Happy Dance I did a couple years ago was to find the first US Census that my Hague ancestor was in after his immigration from England to Rhode Island. James Hague and wife Eliza Barker came from the area of Ashton-Under-Lyne around Manchester, England, but I'm not sure exactly when. I have not found the family on immigration records, but I imagine he landed in Rhode Island. He later moved to Polk Co., Iowa in time for the 1870 US Census. My great-grandfather, William Hague, was born in RI in June 1850, so I knew they'd landed by then. I've yet to find the family in any English census. See photo of the first Hague born in USA, William Hague and wife Mary Ann Williams and their children near Des Moines, Iowa about 1908.

The pre-happy dance came about when I found my great-great grandfather, James "HAUGE", a
nd family in Bristol, Bristol Co., RI in the 1860 census. The misspelling was not that unusual, and the six children's names matched. They were working in the factories - probably cotton mills. That find led me on to more attempts to locate them in 1850. I heard a podcast explaining the problem with the Ancestry Search engine is that you have to have the first three letters entered before you can add wild-cards * for covering possibly mi spelled letters.

Since I'd tried every misspelling, soundex tricks, and wild-cards, I figure I'd just work systematically to change the first letter of the search...ie. A-ague, B-ague, C-ague or Aag*, Bag*, Cag* etc.
On 6 Feb 2007 using an exact choice for soundex, I typed in " aague," ...... there appeared James Ache in the census choices.... And it was my James Hague family!!!!.... obviously pronounced to the census taker without the "H" as they probably sounded like with the Lancashire accent (or so I hear). Oh Happy Day!! Oh Happy Dance!

1850-US Census WarwickTwp, Kent Co., Rhode Island [The ages were a little off but it's my family!]
James Ache 40 M b. England Laborer
Eliza " 40 F b. England
Ann " 18 F b. England
Edward " 13 M b. England
John " 15 M b. England
Joseph " 13 M b. England
Alice " 11 F b. England
Mary A. " 5 F b. England
Anna " 4 F b. England
William " 2 M b. Rhode Island


Another Hague Happpy Dance was just two years ago while visiting cousins in Des Moines. I asked sisters Mary and Oral May Wilson to draw what they remembered of the Hague homestead house from the original 1870 site in Delaware Township, Polk County, Iowa. Mary gave up with her sketch, and next thing I knew she went downstairs at
her house, and returned with a drawing in a picture frame. My grandfather, Alfred George Hague had drawn the Hague homestead for her one day, many years ago as he remembered it in 1905. And there it was!!! I was able to get a copy of it and now can really imagine the way it was when my dad, and his dad stayed with Grandpa William and Grandma Mary Ann (Williams) Hague on the farm. See the house sketch and the home, outbuildings and barn as it looked in 1905.

4 comments:

Apple said...

I wonder if you would have seen the picture of the farm if you hadn't asked for the sketch? I'd have been dancing too!

wendy said...

Thanks so much for sharing! It's great that you have a sketch of the interior which led you to see a sketch of the homestead!

Evelyn Yvonne Theriault said...

Last year while I was going through some photographs with my mother we came across a photo of her childhood home in rural New Brunswick. I was really excited because I I didn't even know she had one! I asked her to make a sketch of the layout and I was glad because my kids have really appreciated having it.
Evelyn in Montreal

Andrea Christman said...

Don't you just love putting all the bits of information together to make a more complete picture of someone? I enjoy reading your blog and have awarded you the Kreativ Blogger Award! See http://christman26.blogspot.com/2009/02/kreativ-blogger-award.html
Enjoy!