RANKIN-L Archives

Archiver > RANKIN > 1999-05 > 0925893901

From: Heather Rankin< >
Subject: James Diamond Rankin in LA
Date: Wed, 5 May 1999 08:45:01 +0000

Hi again

The following is a family group record of James Diamond Rankin and
Maggie Philipps. James is the son of Robert Rankin from the previous
message. This is long - but the last time I posted this I found a
cousin and all of his sisters :-)



Family Group Record

Husband: James Diamond RANKIN Sr.

Birth: 9 Jul 1854 New Orleans, Orleans, Louisiana
Death: 4 Nov 1901 New Orleans, Orleans, Louisiana
Marriage: 17 Feb 1879New Orleans, Orleans, Louisiana
Father: Robert RANKIN Sr.
Mother: Dora HUNTER DOYLE (b Mar 1836

Wife: Margaret (Maggie) PHILLIPS

Birth: Jul 1860 New Orleans, Orleans, Louisiana
Death: 28 Mar 1944 New Orleans, Orleans, Louisiana
Father: John Cameron PHILLIPS (b abt 1825)
Mother: Moriah (Maria) KELLEY (b abt 1824)


1 M Robert Edward RANKIN
Birth: Jan 1880 New Orleans, Orleans, Louisiana
Death: 21 Dec 1953
Spouse: Lilly LEARY

2 F Mary (May) RANKIN
Birth: Apr 1881
Death: bef 1961
Spouse: Edgar P. FEARS

3 M James Diamond RANKIN Jr.
Birth: abt 9 Jul 1882 New Orleans, Orleans, Louisiana

Spouse: Mary Ella CRUICE (m 30 Jun 1913)

4 M Henry P. RANKIN
Birth: Dec 1884 New Orleans, Orleans, Louisiana
Death: bef 1944


5 M William George RANKIN Sr.
Birth: abt 1887 New Orleans, Orleans, Louisiana
Death: 5 Jan 1950 New Orleans, Orleans, Louisiana
Spouse: Viola Edith MORTENSEN (m abt 1910)

6 F Margarette E. (Orite) RANKIN
Birth: Jan 1889
Spouse: Homer SMITH

7 M Joseph Peter RANKIN
Birth: Mar 1893
Death: aft 1961
Residence: Teaneck, NJ
Spouse: Lucille WEATHERBY

8 F Ruth Pearl RANKIN
Birth: Mar 1893
Spouse: Elmer J. EHRETT


HUSBAND NOTES: James Diamond RANKIN Sr. General(1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9): !
James D. Rankin, for over 20 years a docket clerk in the civil
district court, died suddenly yesterday afternoon , after an attack
of apoplexy while engaged in labors at the court. The news of Mr.
Rankin's illness and death which occured a short time after,
created a profound sorrow among his host of friends. There was
probably no man not in the legal profession who was better known or
more highly esteemend among the lawyers than Mr. Rankin. His long
connection with the court had given him an intimate acquaintance
among the lawyers and his quality and accommodating manners made
personal friends of everyone. It was never too late nor was he
never too busy to oblige any who had need of his service. Mr.
Rankin had been in bad health for some time. He took quite an
extended rest during the summer endeavoring to regain his health
which had been shattered by a too close application to his work. It
was only recently that he had returned to his desk. Yesterday
morning he showed up as usual in a happy frame of mind and went
about his duties with his customary energy. About 11 o'clock as he
was copying a citation and had just finished writing the word
"defendant" his head fell over on his desk and his co-workers
immediately rushed to his assistance. He had complained about his
heart and they wasted no time in telephoning for the ambulance. In
the meantime they had realized that he was in a serious condition
and sent for Rev. Canon Mignot of the St. Louis cathedral who
hastened to his side. The pallor of death had overspread his
features, so the last sacraments of the Catholic church were
administered to him as he lay stretched out on two desks in the
clerks' office of the civil district court. When the ambulance
arrived he was conveyed to his home, 1522 Camp Street and there he
lingered untill 1:25 o'clock when he died. As soon as he reached the
house the family sent for Fathers Gaffney and Coghlan who ignorant
of the ministrations of Father Mignot again administered the last
sacraments. James Diamond Rankin was born in this city in 1854. He
was educated at St. Alphonsus School and started life as a grocery
clerk. He then secured employment with the Western Union Telegraph
Company, where he continued untill 23 years ago, when he was given a
position as copyist in the clerks office of the civil district court
when it was reorganized under the constitution of 1879. He had
studied penmanship diligently and acquired a beautiful calligraphy.
He was soon after promoted to the position of chief docket clerk No.
5 and held that position continuously untill the time of his death.
He married Miss Margaret Phillips and she with eight children
survive him. Their children are Robert A., James D. Jr., Henry P.,
William G., and Misses May, Marguarite and two young children,
twins, Pearl and Joseph. The funeral will take place this
afternoon at 3:30 o'clock and will be conducted by Father Coghlan
of St. Michaels church. The interment will be in Greenwood, in the
family tomb.

Daily Picayune, November 5, 1901 Page 3 Col 4. Film 602

WIFE NOTES: Margaret (Maggie) PHILLIPS General(10,11,12,13,14):
RESIDENCE: Margaret's sister, Mary B. Phillips ("Mamie"), was living
with Margaret and James Diamond RANKIN in 1900. "Mamie" died 8 Nov
1901 at age 32. EDUCATION: Margaret's father, John Cameron
Phillips, was in the stevedoring business in New Orleans at the
beginning of the Civil War, his business was bad (not to mention the
"carpetbagging" that accompanied the war - escaped slaves pillaging
the countryside...) so he decided to go to Brownsville, Texas and/or
Matamoros, Mexico. Two of their loyal slaves, but who were free
negroes, went with them. Margaret was sent to a convent in either
Matamoros or Mexico City. (She would later marry at the age of 16 or
17 in N.O. and have 8 children.) Maria, Margaret's sister, it is
thought took sick of a fever and died in either Brownsville or
Matamoros at the age of 16 or 17, where she was buried. Later her
father, John C. Phillips, died and was buried in either Brownsville
or Matamoros. Margaret's mother, Moriah (Maria) Kelley, returned to
New Orleans with her four children after the death of her husband,
though all of them spoke Spanish because their education was begun in



CHILD NOTES: James Diamond RANKIN Jr. General: 2. BIRTH: James
Diamond Jr.'s birth date is recorded on the Family Group Sheets
Records as 9 Jul 1854. This appears to be an error as that is the
birthdate of James Diamond Sr. It is probable judging by the
birthdates of his siblings that he was born about 1882. 12.
MARRIAGE: The Family Group Sheet Record also shows some question as
to whether 30 Jun 1913 is James Diamond's marriage date or his
death date. It appears that it is the marriage date as he would have
been 31 years old, and Lilly would have been 29.


CHILD NOTES: William George RANKIN Sr.
General(15,16,17,18,19,20,21,22,23): Through newspaper clippings and
other notable memorabilia, we have evidence that Wm. Rankin, Sr. was
involved in political scandal that landed him in prison. Without
drawing conclusions pertaining to innocence or intent, I would like
it to go on record that some of his descendants feel that his
involvement is highly trumped up. This is a quote from a
conversation between his daughter-in-law, Velma Andrews, and his
cousin's daughter, Inez Phillips: (Inez) "Ya know a funny thing, I
belong to an organization...where I met this man...who said to me
one day, `Aren't you related to William Rankin who was in state
politics?' And I said, `Yes, did you know him?' He said, `He was a
very good friend of my father. My father always said that he was
the fall guy for Leche.'" (Velma) "For Maestri and Leche." (Inez)
"I didn't know Maestri was mixed up in this." (Velma) "Oh, yeah,
yeah." (Inez) "Ya mean old Maestri that was that mayor." (Velma)
"Oh sure. He and William Rankin had the same attorney and that was
the stupidest thing they ever did in their life. He then just
naturally made Rankin the fall guy." And this from his obituary:
"He served time in the penitentiary at Atlanta, Ga. He was sentenced
for using the mails to defraud in connection with the purchase with
state funds of a $10,000 "gift" boat for former Gov. Richard W.
Leche. The former Conservation Commissioner also was sentenced to a
year in the state penitentiary after he pleaded guilty in criminal
district court to a charge of embezzling state funds. His full
pardon was recommended in 1948 after he operated a wartime shipyard
at Gulfport, Miss., in such a manner that he won a commendation."
Also, Velma Mae Rankin, (Wm. Sr.'s granddaughter) saved this note:
"Mrs. Maria (Mary) J. Emmett Williams called 8/29/82 in reference to
my reply in the Times Picayune. (See P1-8:30.) She said her
husband was auditor for the state in the late '30's, and best friend
of Bill Rankin, Sr...The boat ordered by Con. Comm. (W. G. Rankin)
for Leche was to be paid for by Dr. Mereaux and Weiss and Abe
Shushan." Apparently, according to Wm. Sr.'s daughter-in-law,
Velma, he struck some sort of bargain with Maestri and Leche, that
if he pled guilty in court, they would see to it that he was shortly
released and the better off for it. But when the whole political
scandal Leche was involved in blew up, "Billy" was left high and
dry. There is a book written about the huge scandal (that ended up
in the impeachment of the State Govenor) called the "Louisiana
Hayride" in which the Rankin name is but a footnote.

CHILD NOTES: Margarette E. (Orite) RANKIN General: 1. NAME: "Orite"
is a nickname for Margaret, pronounced "Au-reet". 22. RESIDENCE:
Margaret and Homer Smith were living in Long Beach, CA. as per her
sister Pearl Rankin's letter in 1961. 23. OCCUPATION: Inez Phillips,
(Margaret's niece) remembers that Margaret was a school teacher.

CHILD NOTES: Joseph Peter RANKIN General: 2. BIRTH: Joseph Peter
(Joe) and Ruth Pearl (Pearl) are twins. 22. RESIDENCE: As of 1961,
Joseph and his wife Lucille were living in Atlanta, GA., where he
was a civilian working for the U.S. government. He planned to retire
at the end of the year and settle in St. Simeon's Island, GA. He
also had an unmarried son at the time, going to school in the East.
Family went to Japen in 1947 and stayed until 1950. Kids went to
school there. Returend in 1962 and he went to work retired outside
Pensicola, FL.

General: 2. BIRTH: Joseph Peter (Joe) and Ruth Pearl (Pearl) are

1. Death record. James Diamond Rankin death certificate vol. 125
page 1196 of the New Orleans Death Ledger states he was 47 when he
died in 1901.

2. Obituary notice. "The Death Of A Popular Civil
Court Clerk" obiturary notice for James D. Rankin
publised in the New Orleans Daily Picayune, November 5, 1901 page 3,
col. 4 film #602. Also page 4 column 7 states the funeral will be at
his residence at 1522 Camp Street.

3. Burial. James D. Rankin is burried in Greenwood Cemetery, Lot
21, Jessamine between Hawthorne and Cedar in New Orleans. Tomb is
named J. D. Rankin and contains Maria Kelley, wife of John C.
Phillips, John B. Phillips, Dora Hunter (born Doyle) wife of Robert
Rankin, Robert J. Rankin, son of Robert and Dora, James D.
Rankin, Mamie B. Phillips, Margaret Phillips, wife of James Rankin,
and William G. Rankin, grandson of James D. Rankin. Handwritten copy
of inscriptions on tomb.

4. United States Census. 1900 US Census for James D. Rankin, FHC
Film # 1240570: ED4: Sheet 2: Line 47. James is listed as head of
household, his wife Margaret, 8 children and his sister in law Mary
B. Phillips age 35.

5. Copy of Marriage Record. James D. Rankin and
Maggie Phillips marriage certificate - vol 7 page 268 of the New
Orleans Marriage register lists Maggie as the daughter of John
Phillips and Mary Kelly and James the son of Robert Rankin and Dora
Doyle. They were married 17 Feb 1879.

6. United States Census. 1880 US Census for New Orleans FHC Film #
1254458: Ed 2: Sheet 20: Line 16 shows James Rankin and wife Maggie
with son Robert all living with Maggie's brother John Phillips, his
wife Mina and their four children. James is a telegraph operator.

7. Residence. James D. Rankin resided at 118 Marks Street in Jan
1887 as stated in his mother's, Dora Doyle, obituary.

8. Ibid. In 1901 James D. Rankin resided at 1522 Camp Street as
per Mary B. Phillips obituary and his death certificate.

9. Soards New Orleans City Directory. New Orleans City directory
for 1893 page 697 list James D. Rankin as a docket
clerk - Civil District Court living on 169 Orange.

10. Death record. Mrs. Margaret Rankin death certificate states
she was the daughter of John Phillips from Scotland and Maria Kelly
from Ireland. She had heart problems for 5 years prior to her death.
She was 83 years old and the widow of James D. Rankin.

11. Copy of Marriage Record. Maggie Phillips and James D. Rankin
marriage certificate - vol 7 page 268 of the New Orleans Marriage
register lists Maggie as the daughter of John Phillips and Mary
Kelly and James the son of Robert Rankin and Dora Doyle. They were
married 17 Feb 1879.

12. United States Census. 1880 US Census for New Orleans FHC Film
# 1254458: Ed 2: Sheet 20: Line 16 shows James Rankin and wife
Maggie with son Robert all living with Maggie's brother John
Phillips, his wife Mina and their four children.

13. Obituary notice. Obituary for Margaret Phillips - New Orleans
"Times Picayune" 30 mar 1944, page 2 column 8. Margaret was 84 years
old. She was buried in Greenwood cemetary. She died March 28, 1944.
She was the wife of the late James D. Rankin and the mother of
Robert K, James D. and William G all of New Orleans. Also Joseph P.
Rankin of East Orange New Jersery and Mrs. H.W. Smith amd Mrs E. J.
Ehrett of New Orleans, and Henry P. Rankin and Mrs. E. P. Fears.
Religious services were held at Sacred Heart of Jesus Church.

14. Burial. Margaret Phillips Rankin is buried in the family tomb
of her husband, James D. Rankin - Greenwood Cemetery, Lot 21,
Jessamine between Hawthorne and Cedar in New Orleans.

15. Book. Louisiana Today lists William G. Rankin as Commissioner
of Conservation for the State of Louisiana. Article on page 138.

16. Newspaper article. The Department of Conservation Guards
Louisiana's Vast Natural Resources article shows picute of William
G. Rankin and describes work of the Conservation Commission.

17. Picture. Boats Inc. on West End Blvd. where it turns into Lake
Shore Drive picture of which William George Sr. was president and
William Jr. was vice president.

18. Newspaper article. Several newspaper articles on William G.
Rankin's public life including his appointment as the Chairman of
the Louisiana Tax Commission and as Conservation Commissioner. Also
article on the 90 acre estate on the Old Spanish Trail East of New
Orleans that he owned.

19. Ibid. William George Rankin's release from a one-year prision
term for emblezement. See notes. May 31, 1945.

20. Obituary notice. William George Rankin Funeral Services Today
article in the New Orleans Times-Picayunne Jan 6 1960. Article
mentions William's full pardon from the charge of emblezement.
Buried at Greenwood cemetery.

21. Newspaper article. 5 page article on the home William George
Rankin was building in St. Tammany Parish before the Louisiana
scandals. Cajun chef Justin Wilson purchased the home to film his
cooking show in.

22. Ibid. Preservation In Print magazine article on the William
George Rankin home in St. Tammany Parish being added to the National
Historic Register for it's involvement in the Louisiana Scandal's
and it's statewide architectural significance. Excellent description
of the home and setting.

23. Residence. William George Rankin lived at 610 Park Street when
he died in 1950 per his obituary Jan 6 1950, Times Picayune, page 2,
column 8 Film #871 New Orleans Public Library.

This thread: