ROPER-L ArchivesArchiver > ROPER > 2006-03 > 1142443492
Subject: Edda Ray Roper Moore Dowd SEBURN (b 13 Oct 1906, d 09 Nov 1985 - Grapeland, Houston Co, TX)
Date: 15 Mar 2006 10:24:52 -0700
This is a Message Board Post that is gatewayed to this mailing list.
Surnames: Roper, Moore, Dowd, Seburn, McGill, Anderson, Thompson
Message Board URL:
Message Board Post:
I understand that the central problem is the identification of the ancestors of Edda Ray Roper Moore Dowd SEBURN (b 13 Oct 1906, d 09 Nov 1985 - Grapeland, Houston Co, TX).
You should first understand that you may use an SS-5 Letter to obtain a copy of Edda's original application for a Social Security Number (454-03-3345) issued in TEXAS. This application should show the names of BOTH of Edda's parents. Note that I have shown Edda's date of birth as 13 Oct 1906 rather than 13 Oct 1907. The former is the date shown in the Social Security Death Index.
Edda SEBURN's death certificate might also have her parents names on it, but this is somewhat less certain. The application for a Social Security Number would have been completed by Edda during her lifetime and she would have furnished the information about her parents HERSELF. TO the extent that SHE knew who both of her parents were, this information would tend to appear on the application. By contrast, the death certificate would have been prepared using information furnished by a member of the immediate family. To the extent that her readily available survivors INVOLVED IN THE PREPARATION of the death certificate KNEW, the information might be correct. To the extent that these folks did NOT know (E.g. Edda had outlived her parents, brothers and sisters and her children didn't KNOW their grandparents) the information in the death certificate might be incomplete or WRONG.
Edda seems to have had at least the following children in Texas:
Louis Demmel DOWD (b 04 Mar 1931 - Harris, TX), son of Walter DOWD and Edda Ray ROPER
David Franklin SEBURN (b 20 Jan 1941 - Austin Co, TX), son of Jesse J. SEBURN and Edda Ray ROPER
Elizabeth Florence SEBURN (b 12 Nov 1943), dau of Jesse John SEBURN and Edda Ray ROPER
In 1930, Edda DOWD may be found residing with her husband Walter A. DOWD, age 40, and two children in Ft. Bend County, TX. Edda is then shown to be age 23. She is shown to have been born in MISSISSIPPI to parents both born in Mississippi. I will e-mail you the Census record.
There is a 1930 Census record showing a Bill and Gertrude McGILL in Palestine, Texas. There is also a Texas birth record for a:
Jerry Ray McGILL (b 13 Nov 1932 - Harris, TX), son of William McGILL and Gertrude ROPER
I believe that this record is rather conclusive as to the identity of Gertrude's McGILL husband. This may give you some additional traction to make inquiries of the McGILL family within another RootsWeb Message Board forum. Please note that one of the other siblings may have the family information you seek.
There is also a Texas birth record for:
Lula Jean McGILL (b 07 Mar 1928 - Anderson, TX), dau of Willie and Gertrude McGILL
There is a Texas birth reecord for:
John Paul ANDERSON (b 27 Oct 1953 - Harris), son of John Marvel ANDERSON and Pearly Cecelia ROPER
This seems rather LATE to be finding children of a Pearl ROPER - Anderson marriage, but the coincident appearance of "Cecelia" in Pearl's name is also compelling. Perhaps your paient will recall whether this seems plausible.
There was a the following child born to a Murry F. ROPER:
Mack Mury ROPER (b 20 Aug 1928 - Hidalgo, TX), son of Murry F. ROPER and Amelia V. BROWN
This could certainly be a child of Edda's brother Murray.
I found only four ROPER children born to a Ralph ROPER through about 1940. Of these, two appear to me to be particularly promising, due to the coincident appearance of the given name "Pearl":
Ralph ROPER, Jr. (b 23 Feb 1926 - Wharton, TX), son of Ralph Walter ROPER and Ollie Mae FELDER
Myrtis Pearl ROPER (b 19 Mar 1932 - Harris, TX), dau of Ralph Walter ROPER and Ollie Mae FELDER
This couple may be found in the 1930 Census residing within the household of Virgil J. and Clara C. DOVER in Houston, Texas. Ollie M. ROPER, is shown to be Virgil J. DOVER's sister-in-law, so it would APPEAR that Ollie, age 23, and Clara, age 29, are sisters. This Ralph ROPER is shown to be age 25 (b abt 1905), born in TEXAS with FATHER born in "United States". When Census information is given my someone other than the head of household, it is notoriously UNRELIABLE, so this information about Ralph may not be accurate. The three ROPER children in the household are Ralph W. ROPER, Jr., age 4 1/12, Thomas ROPER, age 2 3/12, and Ethel M. ROPER, age 3/12 [enumeration at 11 Apr 1930].
This is probably the WRONG Ralph ROPER, as it seems most likely that this Ralph is the son of Jim ROPER, age 47 (b abt 1873 - TX), enumerated in Wharton County, TX, in 1920. That Jim ROPER is shown to have been born in Texas to parents each born in Texas. The children within that household were Rosie, age 17, Ralph, age 14, ??? [female], age 12, Lucille, age 7, and Oliver, age 9.
There is another Ralph ROPER, age 11, enumerated in 1920 in a large ROPER family in Eastland, TX. The father is shown as E. ROPER, age 60 (b abt 1860 - AL). The mother is Louisa ROPER, age 44 (b abt 1876 - IL). All of the children in this household beginning with Bailey, age 20, are shown to have been born in Texas. Interestingly, there is an adjacent MOORE family. There is also a YATES in an adjacent record. These are familynames that repeatedly are found in close proximity to ROPERs throughout America!
I do NOT see any ROPER children born in Texas to a J.C. ROPER as such, but there ARE these two candidates:
ALma Marie ROPER (b 29 May 1930 - King, TX) dau of Jessie Clarence ROPER and Alma May GUNNELS
Willie V. ROPER (b 05 Sep 1928 - Montague, TX), son of Joseph Columbus ROPER and Mary Louesa COX
There is a Texas death record for a Mack W. ROPER (d 07 Apr 1986 - McClennan, TX)
There is a Texas death record for a Gertude Ann McGILL (d 08 Apr 1980 - Harris, TX). This seems likely to be the Gertrude McGILL shown in the Social Security Death Index as Gertrude McGILL (b 01 Aug 1917, d Apr 1980) with SSN 465-07-6454 and last residence in Bryan, Brazos, Texas (Zip Code 77801). while it is far from certain that this is the Gertrude ROPER who married William McGILL, it is POSSIBLY the correct record. But IF it were the correct record, it might seem to imply that Gertrude's child Lula Jean McGILL was born when Gertrude was age 11. However, I HAVE seen instances when women have shaved years OFF of their age in Census records and even SSN applications! Bear in mind that for women born in this era, a Social Security Number was NOT REQUIRED if that woman didn't work. It was only much later... when Gertrude might have been an age when fudging her age by a several years seemed attractive that she likely would have applied. There are several other more prod!
uctive avenues that should probably be exhausted before shelling out $27 for the SS-5 Letter.
Again, if you used an SS-5 Letter to obtain the Social Security application of this Gertrude McGILL it MIGHT correctly list her PARENTS.
The name "Mack ROPER" gives us some particularly interesting traction. In 1930, there was a child named Mack ROPER, age 1 7/12 residing within the the household of Amelia V. ROPER, age 23, a widow, in HIdalgo County, TX. Margaret ROEPR, age 6, is also residing within this household. Mack M. ROPER's deceased father is shown to have been born in Mississippi. In 1910, there was a Mack ROPER, age 22?, born MS, working as a farm laborer on the farm of William A. BOWLIN in Kully Chaha Twp, Le Flore Co., OK. A Mack ROPER marriedMargie HAYNES in Drew Co. AR, on 21 Dec 1936.
The Mack ROPER of Le Flore, OK, seems likely to be the Mack Umby ROPER (b 04 Aug 1884) who reigstered there for the WW I Draft.
Several children were born in Texas to Mack William ROPER and Frances Marie TOMEK in the 1950s.
Also, there is a Mack ROPER (b 17 Jun 1912, d Jun 1946) with SSN 265-36-7522 (probably issued in Florida).
You might want to get some clarifying details from your patient regarding Mack ROPER. Does she recall roughly WHEN he was born, etc.? Was he an older or younger brother of Edda?
It is unclear to me from your Query whether this entire ROPER family relocated to Texas from Mississippi or whether only several children found their way to Texas. If the paretns relocated to Texas, then one or both of their deaths MIGHT be reflected in one of the ROPER death records I Indexed at this ROPER message board in 2002. Please see my previous Posts:
Index of Texas ROPER Death Certificates, 1904-1945, By First Name [3 Aug 2002 7:02 PM GMT]
Index of Texas ROPER Death Certificates, 1904-1945, By Date [3 Aug 2002 6:52 PM GMT]
Index of Texas ROPER Death Certificates, 1904-1945, By County [3 Aug 2002 7:10 PM GMT]
* * *
Since we believe that we KNOW that Gertrude McGILL was born in MS about 1904 and that Edda was born there about 1906, it seems that the paretns were most likely in Mississippi during the 1900 Census. It is less clear whether they would be found in Texas or in Mississippi in 1910 and the Census Index that year is of marginal quality.
The BEST prospect for Edda's parents appear to me to be the Frank L. and Cecelia ROPER enumerated in Jackson County, MS, in 1900. Though NONE of the named children seem to have been yet born, this record has MUCH to recommend it. Frank L. ROPER, is shown to be age 26, born in Mississippi in Oct 1873. Cecelia ROPER is also shown to be age 26, born in June 1873. But more importantly, Frank and Cecelia ROPER's Census record is neatly tucked between two JONES families! It appears most likely that Cecelia ROPER might be an elder daughter of the Tom JONES, age 44, and his first wife. Tom's current wife Frances, age 34, is too young to be Cecelia's mother. I will send you this Census record.
This at least gives us more than a little traction into the prior generation!
However, I am presently UNABLE to pick up ANY traction in finding Frank L. ROPER in EITHER the 1880 or the 1910 Census. One possibility is that this is one of the Frank ROPER's shown to have died in Harris County:
Roper, Frank; Harris; 4 Jul 1912; 17738
Roper, Frank; Harris; 7 Feb 1940; 8842
Index of Texas ROPER Death Certificates, 1904-1945, By First Name [3 Aug 2002 7:02 PM GMT]
Very often, when a name is NOT remembered it was because that person died when children were young. I would encourage you to obtain the 04 Jul 1912 death record. You can possibly also obtain an obituary from there deaths as they were in an area well coverered by Houston newspapers. The Houston Public Library Reference Section will do a LOOKUP for you and can let you know if they have found the record. WHEN they find the record, they will copy it and send it for a small charge. http://www.hpl.lib.tx.us/services/askalibrarian.html
My bet is that Edda's father was Frank L. ROPER, of Jackson, MS, and that he may have died in 1912. I do NOT see an obvious death record for Cecelia, so she MIGHT HAVE remarried.
I would encourage you to obtain the SS-5 application for Edda and to seek to obtain a copy of a Jackson, MS, marriage record for Frank and Cecelia ROPER. Jackson County MIGHT also have birth reocrds for the children. This is where I would concerntrate my search. Take a look at the Jackson County RootsWeb site at http://www.rootsweb.com/~msjackso/ . In seeking information from Jackson County officials regarding records, bear in mind that Jackson County got absolutely whalloped by Hurricane Katrina, so some services may not be particularly efficient and the folks down there have a lot of other things on their minds.
I would also encourage you to Post messages on the McGill, Thompson and Anderson Message Boards. Have the Harris County Clerk check to see if there is a marriage record for a Cecelia JONES or ROPER about 1915. Also check to see if there are probate files, particularly Wills for either of the Frank ROPERs shown to have died.
Dr. L. David ROPER (http://www.roperld.com) may also be able to help you. Perhaps he already has something in his files for someone in this branch of the family!