Friday, January 8, 2010

Robert Leo Jones and Mary Berluti

Robert Leo Jones, born July 15, 1918, was the 3rd child and second son born to Fred and Norine Jones.  Historically, he was born while our country was involved in World War I which ended June 29, 1919.  As a mother I cannot imagine looking into the eyes of my newborn infant son and imagining that eventually he would have to go to war -- and one even larger than the one the country was fighting.  Yet this is exactly what happened to all three sons of Fred and Norine.

The war had to be a defining moment in Bob's life.  Here he is pictured with his parents as he prepares to leave.

Our mothers were part of that group of marriageable women who had no one to date.  My mother used to say that the only men not away at the war were older, married, or had some medical disability.  I can't imagine all of the pent-up demand when all of the "boys" returned home.

Bob married Mary Berluti on January 25, 1947 at St. Andrew's Church.  The couple to the right of Bob are Alma and Emmit Shcwartz.  (Emmit was Bob's best friend and eventually became the Godfather to Mary and Bob's son, Bob. The bridesmaid on the left is Dina, sister of the bride, and her future husband, Larry.  Rose verified that the bridesmaid on the far right is Margaret Ann.  What a handsome couple they made!

To this union was born Bob and Gina.  Of course my childhood memories of Uncle Bob were our rather frequent visits to the "Pony Keg" in Silverton that he owned with his brother-in-law.  My brothers remember a lot more than that.

Mary worked for the Rosenthall Printing Company from the time she graduated from secretarial school until she had her first-born, Bob. After becoming a mother, Mary worked on the side for Aaron Matheu who had been her former boss and a writer. At the age of 47, Bob died leaving his widowed wife with two very young children -- Bob was only 10 years old and Gina was 8. Mary went back to work for Rosenthall until the early 70's when she was able to get a job with 5th/3rd Bank.  She eventually supported her family by working as an assistant to the President of 5th/3rd Bank.

 A few years ago, Gina tried to get more understanding about the father who had died when she was so young.  Knowing that he had served in World War II, she contacted our State Representative at the time, Steve Chabot, who had an aide research Bob's war record and get duplicates of the medals he had earned.

Several of us attended the event where Gina received these medals. I hope to be able to find out more (or have other cousins comment on this post).  We have plans to get together and share stories and pictures at the end of this month.  I hope to be able to add more then.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Kate Probert Update

On my August 31st post, I discussed going to Mt. Sterling, KY and attending a meeting of the Mt. Sterling Historical Society that was taking place when I arrived.  They had a speaker, Becky Ryder, from the University of Kentucky.  She discussed preservation techniques for artifacts, newspapers, etc.  Miles Hoskins, the local president of the Historical Society, had found out that some very old copies of the Kentucky Sentinel were going to be part of an estate sale.  The Kentucky Sentinel was a weekly paper published in the 1880s.  He purchased the papers and the society loaned them to U.K. to make digital copies.  They have a website at the Kentuckiana Digital Library.  If you click on this link, you can read the obituary for Kate Probert.

Kate Probert's Obituary

I copied the text for easier reading.

Mt. Sterling Advocate:  Wednesday, March 22, 1905 p. 7.
Probert – Mrs. Kate Probert, relic of Thomas Probert, deceased, departed this life on Sunday night the 20th instant, at 11 o-clock aged 66 years.  Funeral service was conducted at her home on Sycamore Street on Tuesday afternoon at 2 o-clock by her pastor, J. R. Hobbs, of the Baptist church, and her remains were buried in Machpelah cemetery.  Mrs. Probert had been a member of the Baptist church for many years and of the Mt. Sterling Baptist church since its organization in 1870, and as a Christian and church working woman she was consistent in living and faithful in the discharge of religious duties.  As a neighbor, friend, mother, step-mother she was absolutely free from prejudice and favoritism and her endeavor was to be kind and just to all.  She had been sick for more than eight years and such christian fortitude in pain and sorrow has never been surpassed.  The home will be lonely without her, but the evidences she left of trustfulness and the chirstian life will be sufficient to impress the living that she is in that home provided for her through Christ and where she abides others may attain through repentance towards God and faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.  Mrs. Probert leaves two daughters, Mrs. C.C. Coleman, of Cincinnati, and Mrs. Maud Casey, of this city and three grand-children, Katie Mae and Ida Gorman and Georgia Casey.  Mrs. Probert’s husband was an Odd Fellow and she gave evidence of their watchfulness and care for a brother’s widow.
I am amused that the term "relic" as in "relic of Thomas Probert" is used instead of the word "widow". Kate was the stepmother of Lucy Probert and grandmother of Norine.  Interestingly, none of the six children of Lucy are listed as surviving grandchildren.

Another interesting observation is that Kate was apparently a committed member of the Baptist Church.  I believe her husband, Thomas, and his first wife, Mary Dimond were Catholic -- as was Lucy and her husband John Cronin.  They were Irish Catholic. (I've since found out that Thomas and Mary Dimond were married in a Baptist Church in Lexington).

I am so happy that more and more historic newspapers are being digitized.  It certainly makes my job easier.

And so ends my research for 2009.  I wish everyone a Happy New Year for 2010 -- and I hope for more "happy hunting" for myself.