Author Topic: Searching for divorce records circa 1900  (Read 262 times)

Offline msr

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Searching for divorce records circa 1900
« on: Monday 29 October 18 11:07 GMT (UK) »
Are there any divorce records available for Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Vermont?

I have 3 people who all married twice, and at second marriage each says they are divorced!

My 2 cousin x1 - Mary Jane Dobson is the link.  First marriage to Bertram Foster Chase, second marriage to William F M Smith.  I would like to solve the puzzle if possible, so I hope the following makes sense,  It's in chronological order, so may not.....

1892: Hudson, New Hampshire.  Mary Jane Dobson marries Bertram Foster Chase.  Both single.

1903: Lynn, Massachusetts.  William FM Smith marries Bertha May Kenyon.  Both single. 

1905: Montpelier, Vermont.  Bertram marries Juliette, a widow, stating that he is divorced.

1909: Lynn, Massachusetts. Mary Jane (Dobson) Chase marries William F M Smith.  Both state 2nd marriage, and are divorced.

So, might there be records somewhere to confirm divorces, or do I have to think that they just separated and all married bigamously?

Any, and all input very welcome.

Susan    :)

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Offline shellyesq

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Re: Searching for divorce records circa 1900
« Reply #1 on: Monday 29 October 18 12:42 GMT (UK) »
I don't think there's anything comprehensive online for divorce records in those states in that time frame.  You may find mention of the divorces in local newspapers.

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Offline msr

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Re: Searching for divorce records circa 1900
« Reply #2 on: Monday 29 October 18 12:54 GMT (UK) »
I was afraid of that shellyesq as I haven't found any that early.  I did find some in NH for the name Chase, but none were right.    Bertram could have returned to Vermont before any legal separation.

It seems that my puzzle may remain unresolved.    :-\

Offline oldohiohome

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Re: Searching for divorce records circa 1900
« Reply #3 on: Monday 29 October 18 13:20 GMT (UK) »
You might have to track down the court in which the divorce took place.

For Mary J Dobson and Bertrand F Chase - they both seem to be in Nashua New Hampshire in 1900, but living apart. So that might narrow down where to look.

For likely courts in Nashua, Google shows:
Hilsborough County NH Probate Court, and also a 9th Circuit Court Probate Division - Nashua, of the state judicial system.

Hudson NH is in the same county. I didn't google courts in Hudson NH.

There is a slim chance that the New England Historic and Genealogical Society has NH, Massachusetts, and Vermont divorce records online, at https://www.americanancestors.org/index.aspx

but they may only have them on microfilm, if they have them at all.

----

1900
Mary J Chase
https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:M3YC-DX1

Bertrand F Chase
https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:M3YZ-QS7

(Mary says she is married 7 years and has a child, Bertrand says he is single.)

This tree says Bertrand married a Helen Fletcher in Nashua NH in 1900

https://www.familysearch.org/tree/person/details/LTYW-Q56
Cambridgeshire: Billups, Cropley; Derbyshire: Jenkinson, Gratton; Co Down: O'Rourke, Rodgers, Cunningham

Offline msr

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Re: Searching for divorce records circa 1900
« Reply #4 on: Monday 29 October 18 13:52 GMT (UK) »
oldohiohome, the 1900 for Mary is correct, she actually gave birth to 3 children though, but only one survived.  He (Harold) was with aunt and uncle in 1900, from which I surmise that Mary and Bertram had already parted, compounded by the fact that Bertram was back in Vermont, announcing that he was single.

I'm afraid that the censuses you have found for Bertrand Chase are not the right person, but thank you for looking. 
Mary's 1st husband was Bertram Foster Chase, and in 1900 he was in MIddlesex Town, Washington County, Vermont, later marrying widowed Juliette Mabel (Carpenter) Wheeler in 1905, admitting that he was divorced.

It is all designed to confuse me, and I'm sure the matter does not yet want to be resolved.   :-X


Offline aghadowey

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Re: Searching for divorce records circa 1900
« Reply #5 on: Tuesday 30 October 18 10:48 GMT (UK) »
Sometimes newspapers mentioned divorce cases- either by a simple listing a names or more 'exciting' details.
Please do NOT ask for lookups by Personal Message.

Offline usaPetticrew

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Re: Searching for divorce records circa 1900
« Reply #6 on: Tuesday 30 October 18 19:35 GMT (UK) »
I'm looking through newspapers, no divorce notices so far.  But did see an obit for Bertram F. Chase. 

Montpelier Morning Journal
Montpelier, Vermont
Friday, July 31, 1914 - Page 5

Summary:
Chase died at his home on July 30, 1914, of heart trouble.  He was a native of Montpelier, born 43 years before.  Son of Edmund Chase, "who died recently, aged 86".
Survived by his wife, one son Harold Chase of Merrimac, NH.
Two sisters:  Mrs. Otis Buntley, Mrs. Charles Wright, both of Merrimac.
Two brothers:  Fred Chase of Concord, NH; William Chase of Franklin Falls, NH.
Petticrew, Pettigrew, Bedigrew, and all variants.

Offline msr

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Re: Searching for divorce records circa 1900
« Reply #7 on: Tuesday 30 October 18 22:52 GMT (UK) »
Thank you usaPetticrew, very interesting.  On which site was the newspaper found please? 

Harold was the son of Mary Jane Dobson, my second cousin once removed.  She of course was now married to William Smith, and Harold was himself recently married.
In the 1900 and 1910 censuses Harold was living with his aunt, the Mrs Charles Wright mentioned in the newspaper, in fact he is mentioned as 'adopted son'.

The un-named wife who survived Bertram was Juliette Mabel Carpenter Wheeler, she lived until 1948 and I believe she's buried with her first husband, Leon Wheeler.

Bertram may be buried with his parents, but as I haven't found the information yet, that is only a possibilty.    Mary Jane Dobson (Chase) Smith is buried with her husband William.

Thank you again

Susan

Offline usaPetticrew

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Re: Searching for divorce records circa 1900
« Reply #8 on: Wednesday 31 October 18 12:51 GMT (UK) »
This appears to be the same Edmund Chase:

https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/75003214/edmund-h-chase

Edmund H Chase
Birth    7 Dec 1827
Death    13 Aug 1913 (aged 85)
Burial    
North Branch Cemetery
Middlesex, Washington County, Vermont, USA

wife
Lestina R Chase
18271887

son
William E Chase
18531928

Bertram was buried same cemetery:
https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/75003213/bertram-f-chase

 Bertram F Chase
Birth    unknown
Death    29 Jul 1915
Burial    
North Branch Cemetery
Middlesex, Washington County, Vermont, USA

The death day may be accurate.  In the obit it said he died "yesterday", which I took to be the day before the publication, or July 30.  So, July 29 might be the actual death day.  The year above is definitely not the same as the obit publication in 1914.

The obit was in Newspapers.com, through a database at my public library.  That database held several Montpelier papers.  But none for Lynn, MA, which surprised me.  I had no luck finding divorce notices.
Petticrew, Pettigrew, Bedigrew, and all variants.