16 July 2013

Tombstone Tuesday: FindAGrave Successs, Earl Wiggins

I love FindAGrave.com. I love how volunteers are willing to go searching for grave makers that I can't travel to, or that I searched for and didn't find. Here's a success story.

Evaline Peak, Earl Wiggins, Edith Peak Wiggins, Marguerite Geiszler
Evaline Peak (nee Townley), Earl Wiggins, Edith Wiggins
(nee Peak) and Marguerite Geiszler

Earl F Wiggins is the husband of my great grand aunt Edith Marie Peak. Edith and Earl married 20 Oct 1923 and often visited Edith's sister Evaline Peak Geiszler's home in Columbus.

Four days after their third anniversary, Earl died (24 Oct 1926). According to the death certificate, Earl was buried in East Lawn Cemetery. I discovered this fact, after my trip last year. So, I placed a photo request on Find A Grave. I less than a month (not typical, but so awesome), a volunteer had photographed Earl's grave stone. 


Earl Wiggin's grave stone, East Law Cemetery
Memorial # 102356677
The volunteer created and solved several mysteries. First, why is Earl Wiggins on a gravemarker that says Cox with no other names?

Second, I would normally say focus on the just Earl's gravestone for this photo. BUT, as luck would have it, this volunteer took a photo that included a smidge of another grave marker. That name Geiszler. Does it sound familiar? Oh yeah. I have one relative buried in East Lawn that I had the worst luck finding in May 2012. I thought the volunteer found him. So I asked about both topics.

Here's the response:

"Cemetery records indicate that the Cox monument was intended to me a family grave marker, it occupies two of the six grave spaces in the plot. Perhaps the Cox family relocated, but for whatever reason one of the spaces was sold to the Geiszler family. Earl was buried to the left of that grave, and the family may have taken advantage of the otherwise empty Cox grave marker and put his information on it. The office is understandably uncertain about the specifics."






Okay... so what's the story? 

The Cox is interesting. Earl's parents are Charles Wiggins and Hattie Mills. The married sometime between 1900 and 1901 when Earl was born. Earl's father died in 1905.  Then Hattie remarried in 1923 to John H Cox. Now... I haven't dug much into John Cox' life. But Hattie died in 1962 and is buried in Green Lawn Cemetery. So, I'm certain Hattie, who survived her son, gave the Cox plot to her son. But why she and her husband are not buried there, I have no idea. Strange is about all I can say.

But here's where things get a little tricky... The Geiszler turns out to be William J Geiszler. William J Geiszler is brother of George J Geiszler, the father-in-law of Earl Wiggins. George and William were not getting along during this period of their lives. Their children were not associating with each other. Why a spot for an estranged Uncle-in-Law was given to William, I'll never know. And who owns the remaining four spaces, I do not know either.

I was so excited about the information the volunteer shared. So I asked if he (I'm assuming he with an id of Ted's son) wouldn't mind going back to take a photo. Here's what I received in my email next...

"There is no need for me to return. In anticipation of your request, I took a photo of the Geiszler grave marked and have attached it. I'm glad that you are happy with the first one."


William J Geiszler, East Lawn Cemetery
Memorial # 93026471

Now... I wonder why William is not buried beside his wife Aleta, but I think I've finally figured it out. Aleta was Catholic. William was not. Aleta is buried in a St. Joseph's Catholic Cemetery. William could not be buried there. But, their stones were done in the same style. Very interesting.

2 comments:

  1. What a great FindAGrave story. I've had some great luck with FindAGrave as well. My most recent success was from a combination of FindAGrave, a cemetery plot card, and some other resources, but the photo of the stone with a specific birth date nailed it. See Samuel Greele's Fourth Wife.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Elizabeth... I just read about that. I couldn't leave a post using my phone. Ugh. New, to me, technology.

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