Bertha Fidelia (LeMaster) Yaeger (1874-1922) was my paternal great-grandaunt. What follows is an exploratory analysis of the biographical data I have discovered about her.
1. Vital Records
1.1. Birth Certificate
Bertha was born May 31, 1874 in Darke County, Ohio1
The birth register can be viewed here.
1.1.1. Birth Notice in Newspaper
Will need to search contemporary newspapers to see if mention was made of Bertha's birth.
1.1.2. Bible Record
I am not aware of any surviving Bible records of the LeMaster family. Will continue to reach out to extended family in hopes that one does exist.
1.1.3. Baptismal Record
I am not aware of any baptismal record for Bertha. The family was affiliated with the Methodist Episcopal church.
1.1.4. Adoption Record
There is no indication that Bertha was adopted.
1.2. Marriage License
Bertha married John Henry Yaeger on May 20, 1903 in Jay County, Indiana2. The marriage license spells her surname as "LeMasters".
A copy of their marriage license was the subject of a previous post.
1.2.1. Marriage notice in newspaper
Will need to search contemporary newspapers to see if mention was made of Bertha and John's nuptials.
1.2.2. Anniversary notice
Bertha did not survive to reach their 25th wedding anniversary.
1.2.3. Divorce decree
There is no indication that Bertha and John were ever divorced.
1.3. Death Certificate
Bertha died March 16, 1922 in Brazil, Clay County, Indiana3. I do not yet have a copy of her death certificate. Will need to add requesting a copy of this to my "to-do" list for my next research trip.
1.3.1. Obituary in newspaper
Bertha's obituary appeared in the March 17, 1922 edition of the Portland, Indiana Commercial-Review3. According to the obituary, she underwent an operation and never recovered. This obituary was the subject of a previous post.
Will need to search local newspapers in Brazil, Indiana area to see if mention was made of Bertha's death.
1.3.2. Funeral home records
I do not know which funeral home handled the arrangements. Because she was buried in Salamonia, will need to check local Jay County, Indiana funeral homes to see if they have any records of her funeral.
1.3.3. Tombstone photograph
Bertha is buried in the Salamonia Cemetery in Salamonia, Jay County, Indiana4. Her tombstone was photographed as the subject of a previous post.
2. Census Records
2.1. Federal Census Records
2.1.1. 1920 Federal Census
On January 3, 1920, Bertha was enumerated in the John H. Yaegar household in Brazil, Clay County, Indiana5, as Bertha Yaegar, wife, age 45, born in Ohio. She could read and write and spoke English. No occupation was listed. Her father was born in Indiana and her mother in New Jersey. Living in the household were her husband, John H., age 45, born in Indiana, a teacher; and children Clarence, age 16, Mary, age 14, Helen, age 13, John V., age 11, George W., age 9, and Luther L., age 2; all born in Indiana. There were also two lodgers living in the household.
2.1.2. 1910 Federal Census
On April 27, 1910, Bertha was enumerated in the John H. Yaeger household in Brazil, Clay County, Indiana6, as Bertha F. Yaeger, wife, age 35, born in Ohio. She could read and write and spoke English. No occupation was listed. She was the mother of 4 children, all living. Her father was listed as born in New Jersey, and her mother in Ohio. Living in the household were her husband, John H., age 35, a teacher, and children Clarence H, age 6, John V., age 1, Mary E., age 5, and Helen E., age 3.
2.1.3. 1900 Federal Census
On June 4, 1900, Bertha was enumerated in the Luman C. Lemasters household in Madison Township, Jay County, Indiana7, as Bertha F. Lemasters, daughter, age 26, born May 1874 in Indiana. Her father was born in Ohio and her mother born in New Jersey. She could read and write and speak English. Her occupation was a school teacher.
2.1.4. 1880 Federal Census
On June 5, 1880, Bertha was enumerated in the Walker Lemasters household in Madison Township, Jay County, Indiana8, as Bertha Lemasters, daughter, age 6, born in Ohio. Her father was born in Ohio and her mother in New Jersey.
2.2. State Census Records
The State of Indiana conducted state census in 1853, 1857, 1871, 1883, 1889, 1901, 1913, and 1921. These, however, were merely for the purposes of determining legislative apportionment.
2.3. Agricultural Census Records
I have not yet investigated these types of census records to see what light might be shed on the LeMaster farm.
3. Military Records
3.1. Draft Registration
Not applicable, as Bertha was a female.
3.2. Pension Records
I am not aware of any military service by her husband or father that would have made Bertha eligible for military benefits. Her father did serve in the Civil War, but I don't believe she ever received any minor's benefits.
3.3. Service Records
Not applicable, as Bertha was a female.
4. Land Records
4.1. Deed Records
Deed records need to be thoroughly searched in Clay County, Indiana to see what items might mention Bertha and John. Will add this to my "to-do" list for my next research trip.
4.2. Plat map / county map
Plat maps for Clay County, Indiana need to be researched as well. Will contact the local historical society to see what information they might have on Bertha and John.
5. Supplemental records
Supplement records available for research on Bertha include city/county directories, court records and will and probate records. Will add these to my "to-do" list for my next research trip.
1. Ohio Births and Christenings, 1821-1962, digital images, FamilySearch Internet online [www.familysearch.org], accessed 6 February 2011.
2. Jay County, Indiana, Original Marriage License: "John H. Yaeger to Bertha Lemasters, 1903"; County Marriage Returns Collection; Jay County Historical Society, Portland, Indiana.
3. Mrs. John H. Yeager obituary, Commercial-Review, Portland, Indiana, USA, March 17, 1922, page 2.
4. Salamonia Cemetery (Jay County, Indiana), John H. and Bertha F. Yaeger marker, photographed by Travis LeMaster.
5. 1920 U.S. census, Clay County, Indiana, population schedule, Ward 4, Brazil, enumeration district 27, SD 5, sheet 3, 604 S. Walnut, dwelling 85, family 85; digital images, Ancestry.com (www.ancestry.com : accessed 13 April 2013); National Archives, Washington, D.C.
6. 1910 U.S. census, Clay County, Indiana, population schedule, Ward 4, Brazil, enumeration district 6, SD 5, sheet 12A, 704 S. Walnut, dwelling 269, family 269; digital images, Ancestry.com (www.ancestry.com : accessed 13 April 2013); National Archives, Washington, D.C.
7. Luman C. Lemasters household, 1900 U.S. census, Jay County, Indiana, population schedule, Madison township, ED 62, SD 67, sheet 3, dwelling 59, family 60; National Archives micropublication T623, roll 380.
8. Walker Lemasters household, 1880 U.S. census, population schedule, Madison Township, Jay County, Indiana, ED 161, SD 6, page 4, dwelling 47, family 48; National Archives micropublication T9, roll 287.
This post was developed as part of the series relating to Building My 2011 Research Template, an attempt to systematically document and source the details of my ancestors' lives. Comments regarding this template and the conclusions drawn in this article are welcomed.