dee_burris: (Default)
Dee Burris Blakley ([personal profile] dee_burris) wrote2011-05-17 08:00 pm

Wedding Wednesday: Oh, for crying out loud...

Got a Find a Grave correction today on a Burris entry in Oakland Cemetery in Russellville, Pope Co., AR. It was about my entry on Ethel Burris, wife of Robert Elbert Burris.

The email said, Hello! Ethel was born Ethel Dixie Harrison. Her parents are Esther Hornbeak and Garret Powell Harrison.

Oh, cool. I went to correct the entry and then got into my software. Ethel had been a MNU for so long, and I just love to give MNUs their rightful identities.

So I did. And bonus - I had her parents, too.

Then, I signed on to Family Search to see if I could find the marriage record.

I did.

Both of the marriages to Ethel. Or Ethels.

Were they Ethel plural? Or the same gal?

Help me out here...



Call to Dad. Did Elbert have three wives? And if not, why would he marry Miss Ethel McHon in 1926, and Mrs. Ethel Harrison in 1931? And if they aren't the same Ethel, then what happened to Miss Ethel McHon, and where is she buried?

And what's up with the do not publish written on the 1931 record?

It's definitely the same Elbert - he was born in 1888. He was 38 for the 1926 license, and 43 for the 1931 license.

Dad couldn't shed any light on the question.

My Burrises are driving me crazy at a gallop.

My son says it will be a short trip.

Anyway, happy Wedding Wednesday, Elbert. You can bet this whole side of the family will be digging into your past.

If there are any still alive who can remember it.

(Anonymous) 2011-05-18 09:11 pm (UTC)(link)
Well here's a guess. I think there's probably only one Ethel. The "do not publish" on the second record probably means they didn't want the marriage information forwarded to the local newspaper. The 1930 census shows Ethel was first married at age 20, so she "may" have been married circa 1922. If so, it could explain the different last name on the first marriage record to Elbert Burris. I can think of 2 possible explanations for the 2nd marriage: they divorced and remarried or there was some question as to the validity of the 1st marriage and so they married again to be sure it was legal.