Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Tombstone Tuesday; James Craig

Photo by John Bibber, Find-A-Grave volunteer, used with permission
Mount Hope Cemetery, Swansea, MA. (2014)

Photo by John Bibber, Find-A-Grave volunteer, used with permission
Mount Hope Cemetery, Swansea, MA. (2014)

James Craig and Ella (Lang) Stansfield

James Craig, my husband's maternal grandfather is buried with his second wife Ella (see photo below to see what they looked like) at Mount Hope Cemetery in Swansea, Massachusetts. 

James's first wife, my husband's maternal grandmother, Hannah (Wilde) Craig died in 1932 and is buried with her parents at Oak Grove Cemetery in Fall River, Massachusetts. I was delighted to see my request for this gravestone fulfilled and it and another gravestone completely changed my vacation plans (in a good way). Thank you John Bibber because now I don't have to go and look for graves in this large cemetery.

The wonderful news is that by having the death dates for James (1952) and his wife Ella (1960), we can finally date many family photographs. I knew they were buried here from a Facebook friend's mother who called us to find our more about Ella's family.

Social media is a big help in this way. Knowing where they were buried was the first question I had. I was amazed by being able to confirm that James was a severe diabetic and died because Ella did not get there in time to give him his insulin shot. After her husband died, Ella discovered she too was diabetic and died from it. But, I had no dates of death to go by and so now I do!

James and Ella were married sometime in 1939 and lived in Warren, RI in the 1940 census. As she was the widow of Robert Stansfield, she owned her own home and raised her two children, Violet and Robert. We don't know if she was living apart from Robert Stansfield when he died, but I do know he died in 1939. Viola and her husband are also buried here as their names are on the stone. 

Ella worked in the mill with James and they were very much in love when they married (from the phone call I was told this). It is always great to have that little bit of personal information about family. My late mother-in-law told us that she was glad her father married again so someone could take care of him. My husband only remembers him a little bit. Due to diabetes, he had lost a leg and my husband remembers being fascinated by that but he thinks the amputation happened after Steve was born in 1945.)

Viola and her brother Robert, were highly educated, at Vassar and MIT. Both married but were childless (source: family history notes of my late mother-in-law)

I have some family snapshots that now can be dated and will become Sentimental Sunday blog posts next winter)
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