Thursday, January 19, 2017

Katie Connell 1859 - 1944

Katie Connell was the oldest of George and Johanna's children, born in 1859 in Lodi. It's curious that per the 1940 census Katie had an 8th grade education, while the 1880 census says that 20 year old Katie was attending school. She moved to Chicago where she met Henry Heseltine, a recent immigrant from England. They probably married in about 1894, the year he became a US citizen.  Their daughter, Elizabeth was born in March of 1896 and Henry died just three months later.  The census says Catherine was a "compositor" - a typesetter for a printer - until at least 1910. I assume that Catherine struggled financially, since they moved from town to town, always near Chicago - Cicero, Oak Park, Harvey, Chicago, Villa Park - and her work changed to housework/servant/janitor. Elizabeth attended two years of college and became a public school teacher, living with her mother until her marriage in about 1921.

Elizabeth married Herman Kaehler, a Chicago cab driver.  Herman was a military veteran, though I don't know which conflict, if any.  He was a widow with four children - Ruth, Hazel, Marjorie and Patricia - aged 11 to 4 when he married Elizabeth.  They had all been living with his parents in 1920, and the kids were not with him in subsequent censuses, so I wonder if they were raised by their grandparents. I may have found Hazel (married name Miller) living in Deerfield with her husband and about four kids.  I believe she passed away in 1998.  I could not find the other kids as adults.

Herman Kaehler and Elizabeth Heseltine married in about 1921 and by 1930 had four children.  I'm not posting their names since some of them may still be living.  I think that life was hard for Herman and Elizabeth, too, though this may have been the norm during the Depression.  I can't find the family in 1930 in the census.  In 1940, Herman claimed a profession of brick layer, but had not worked in over a year. He was receiving some income, perhaps from a veteran's pension.  Elizabeth had a public works job as a nursing (?) school director.  Their 17 year old daughter was still in school, but their 16 year old son was not.  With an occupation of "new worker", not having found work in 13 weeks, with a 9th grade eduction, and being only 16 his prospects were probably not good. I was not able to find the kids as adults, nor death information for Herman and Elizabeth.  Elizabeth's mother, Katie Connell Heseltine, passed away at the age of 85 while living in Villa Park, near Elmhurst.  She may have been living with the Kaehlers. She is buried in Mt. Carmel cemetery in Hillside, Illinois.

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