Georgina Alma is my brick wall. Anyone researching ancestry will know that a brick wall is not great! I found her name on another cousin match but there are no records and thus no trace and no confirmation. Was her name written in a Bible?
When I was teaching kindergarten we used to sing a repetitive song, “Going on a Bear Hunt, Want to Come Along?” Thick grass, can’t go over it, can’t go around it, (rub hands together like parting grass) have to go through it. Going on a Bear Hunt, Want to Come Along? A river, (make swimming motions), can’t fly over it, can’t go round it, let’s swim through it. When it comes to Georgina Alma I think of her as my brick wall, can’t climb over, can’t go around but I can take the brick wall down with the bricks where her name is written over and over!
The info from other trees says John Conklin married Phebe Hough. This may be correct but when researching the Hough family I can find zero DNA matches. I have matches to the names McCrea, Conklin, and Reid. What I do know to be true is that Elijah Conklin, listed as chairmaker in the Kingston City Directory, married Catherine Christian McCrea on October 3, 1836 who was born September 25, 1816, in Ireland. Elijah died in 1861 at the age of 66. What I cannot confirm is the parentage of Elijah, thus my brick wall. That he was at Ernestown, Ontario where the loyalists were settled after the Revolutionary War
Side note: Cataraqui Cemetery is a 91 acre cemetery, the final resting place of many generations of Kingstonians, including two fathers of Confederation: Sir Alexander Campbell and Sir John A. Macdonald, Canada’s first Prime Minister. Elijah had died in 1861 but Christiana would have seen the birth of a new nation called Canada 1867 , the Canadian Pacific Railway completed in 1885, Canada’s national park system and the North West Mounted Police or Mounties. Kingston was part of the Frontenac and Addington counties. It was largely settled by loyalists after the Revolutionary War and also had a large group of Quakers, fleeing the American War.
Catherine McCrea’s parents William 1789 and Christian Sye 1782-1857 married on April 27, 1811 in Killmore, County Down, Ireland by Rev. Dr. Kennedy. Catherine was born on September 25, 1816 at Killyleagh, Ireland, as was her brother Joseph but the family came to Kingston, Ontario where siblings Ann and William James McCrea were born. The boys Joseph and William James are listed on the 1851 Canadian census as Presbyterians working as carpenters, living with their mother Christiana. On the 1861 Canada Census their sister, Catherine McCrea Conklin was a widow (of Elijah Conklin) aged 42 living alone at Kingston, Frontenac, Canada West, belonging to the Church of England. At age 65 she still there living with her son, Elijah Conklin aged 25. Catherine McCrea Conklin was my 3rd great grandmother on my father’s paternal side. Elijah and Catherine Conklin named their children: Joseph McCrea Conklin, Olivia, Elijah and my 2nd great grandmother Christina Ann Conklin (as info above). 1837-1925 married James Reid, the funeral furniture businessman. This was where I saw the first pattern in namings. Joseph was given his mother’s maiden name. Elijah was named after his father, Olivia? , and Catherine Christina named after her grandmother. When I came across this picture and others I started thinking about the names given to descendants. Is it just a coincidence that Georgina and Alma are used over and over or were the names not given lightly. There seems to be a pattern here. Many cultures believe in honoring their elders and name children after them. A surname of the mother will often be revealed through the use of family names for her children. Below are my bricks I have found with the names Georgina and Alma which maybe the clues to my elusive Georgina Alma.
James Reid and Christina Ann Conklin named their third child, Georgina Alma Reid 1864-1902. Their son Robert James Reid used the name twice: Jessie Alma Reid 1880-1882 and Georgina Elizabeth Reid 1887-1975. Georgina Elizabeth Reid married John Charles Duncan d’Esterre and named their daughter Georgina Reid d’Esterre 1920-1992.
James Reid and Christina Ann Conklin named their second child Elizabeth Jane (Ida) Reid my great grandmother who named their 5th child Alma May Waddell.
Alma May Waddell 1894-1987, was sister to my Grandfather Gordon Reid Waddell. When he came west to homestead his mother and sisters came to visit. Gordon needed money and went freighting between the hotels in West Glacier. Apparently his sister went with him and the back of the picture says guiding at Glacier. Alma would be about 20 years of age in the picture, a long ways from Kingston, Ontario, raised in her grandfather’s funeral parlor. Alma would marry Ernest Graham when he came visit to his cousins on a homestead. To further strengthen my theory that names were important to the family two of her sons were named Norton Reid Graham and John Waddell Graham.
I may never know who Georgina Alma was, my guess is the mother of Elijah Conklin who married Christina McCrea. But I know I was named after my mother, my older sister after an aunt, another sister after a grandmother and the youngest has historical meaning. I continued the tradition: my boys each have middle names after their grandfathers and my daughter’s namesake is my sister. For now, I’ll just keep searching and researching for my illusive Georgina Alma.