Shawn Weil wrote:
My GGreatgrandmother had 9 children, 8 of which survived to adulthood.
Family lore says that the child who passed away before his time was run
over in the streets of the Lower East Side by a beer wagon, while my
grandfather was supposed to be supervising. However, my grandfather was
the youngest of the 8 siblings that survived, and he wouldn't have been
older than 3 years old himself. I doubt the family story, and would like
corroboration in documentation.
I am trying to figure out when this missing sibling was born and killed.
Here are my clues.
1) The 1900 census does not indicate that a child passed away.
2) The 1910 census does indicate the passing of a child.
3) I know that siblings were born 6/1899, 8/11/1901, 7/28/1903
*4) NYC Birth Certificates >from 1901 and 1903 seem to indicate that the
child was born in 1902. However, I do not know if I am interpreting the
In NYC Birth records of this era, there are two questions that seem
pertinent to my mystery:
- Number of Previous Children
- How Many Now Living (in all)
The answers in the 1901 Certificate:
- Number of Previous Children: 6
- How Many Now Living (in all): 7
(Does this mean that all of her children are living?)
The answers in the 1903 Certificate:
- Number of Previous Children: 8
- How Many Now Living (in all): 8
(Does this mean that a child has passed away?)
Now, I would interpret the first question to reflect the number of
successful pregnancies that the mother had had before(and not including)
the birth of the current child I would interpret the second question to
reflect the number of children that are currently living, including the
Is this the correct interpretation?
You have a mystery! The way that the birth records are written could be
confusing: if all her 'previous kids' were still alive the number should be
the same. In 1901 more of them were alive than were born!
Is there a name listed in the 1900 census which is missing in 1910,
indicating a death? Or do you think the child died before it got to a
census year? Every 2 years for births is common-if you have all the
birthdates, is there a longer gap?
I would go to the Columbus FHL and get the Death index for New York.
Unless the surname is common, you should be able to find the death.