Author Topic: Ethel Sparks born New York c1890  (Read 223 times)

Offline m23to53

  • RootsChat Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 158
  • Census information Crown Copyright, from www.nationalarchives.gov.uk
    • View Profile
Ethel Sparks born New York c1890
« on: Wednesday 21 November 18 11:57 GMT (UK) »
Is it possible to trace a divorce that happened, possibly in New York, in the late 1920s? Nothing on Ancestry or NY Times. I hope so as It could help me trace this lady's origins.

Ethel Sparks, occupation writer,   born c1890, is living 354 E 41St Street with Clarence H Sparks (in his forties as second digit could be a bad 0,6 or 8), his occupation seems to be lawyer overwriting writer? I assume married as that census does give relationships of members of a household.

She is on the 1930 census, divorced and then living 500 E 48 St. and still writer as occupation.

These two records are, so far, the only ones I can find for the lady. But I have now found another Ethel Sparks who married a Clarence Sparks and seems to have been involved in a divorce in the 1920s! Clarence Ashton Sparks, 1877-1975, married Ethel M Cooney (some records say Conney) in Manhattan in 1908. They are on 1910 census which says she was born c1885, and have a daughter Mary E., apparently less than  a year old, and he is a lawyer. She and Mary are on 1915 NY census living with he mother, no sign of him. This seems to be the last sighting I can find for her though Clarence is on 1920 census living with parents, status married. Then on 1930 census he is in Connecticut married to Cornelia, and now working in real estate.
(I wonder if the daughter could be the Mary Elizabeth Sparks, 1909-1918, buried in Brooklyn - no death record for her mentions parents). I wonder if this Ethel is the Ethel M Sparks 1880-1950 in New York.

The two Ethels may just be a coincidence in husbands, but if I could track down details of a divorce it could help to identify the one I am interested in.

Many thanks
John

RootsChat is the busiest, largest free family history forum site in the country. It is completely free to use. Register now.
Also register instantly with Facebook or Twitter (and other social networks). Start your genealogy search now.


Offline shellyesq

  • Moderator
  • RootsChat Marquessate
  • ********
  • Posts: 12,547
    • View Profile
Re: Ethel Sparks born New York c1890
« Reply #1 on: Wednesday 21 November 18 12:40 GMT (UK) »
There is a death notice for daughter Mary here - http://www.fultonhistory.com/Newspaper%2014/New%20York%20NY%20Herald/New%20York%20NY%20Herald%201918/New%20York%20NY%20Herald%201918%20-%209676.pdf  Her parents' names fit with the 1908 marriage you found.

RootsChat is the busiest, largest free family history forum site in the country. It is completely free to use. Register now.
Also register instantly with Facebook or Twitter (and other social networks). Start your genealogy search now.


Offline shellyesq

  • Moderator
  • RootsChat Marquessate
  • ********
  • Posts: 12,547
    • View Profile
Re: Ethel Sparks born New York c1890
« Reply #2 on: Wednesday 21 November 18 13:04 GMT (UK) »
This appears to be Ethel in 1940 - https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:KQTD-M88

Offline shellyesq

  • Moderator
  • RootsChat Marquessate
  • ********
  • Posts: 12,547
    • View Profile
Re: Ethel Sparks born New York c1890
« Reply #3 on: Wednesday 21 November 18 14:46 GMT (UK) »
There is a death notice for Mary Cooney, mother of Ethel - http://www.fultonhistory.com/Newspaper%209/New%20York%20NY%20Sun/New%20York%20NY%20Sun%201920%20Feb-Oct%20Grayscale/New%20York%20NY%20Sun%201920%20Feb-Oct%20Grayscale%20-%201756.pdf

Clarence Ashton Sparks' WWI draft registration card from Sept. 1918 (two months before the death of daughter Mary) has him living at the same address as his mother - https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:33S7-91XM-B71?i=5367&cc=1968530

Ethel M. Sparks and Mary Elizabeth Sparks seem to have been buried in the same section of the cemetery.  https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/58030645/ethel-m.-sparks  https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/58030661/mary-elizabeth-sparks

To me, everything looks like there is one Clarence & Ethel Sparks couple who later divorced. 

Offline m23to53

  • RootsChat Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 158
  • Census information Crown Copyright, from www.nationalarchives.gov.uk
    • View Profile
Re: Ethel Sparks born New York c1890
« Reply #4 on: Wednesday 21 November 18 20:41 GMT (UK) »
Thanks. I was thinking that the two Ethels are actually the same person. But a couple of things make me hesitate,
It is clearly Clarence H Sparks on the 1925 NY census, the way the H is written matches other Hs on the page and is not  a badly written A.
And Clarence Ashton Sparks and his second wife, the former Cornelia Williams Cleaveland had a daughter, Cornelia Ruth Sparks born 24 January 1924.
Okay this child could have been married out of wedlock, but would Clarence be living with his first wife, after what appears to be a decade long separation, after the birth of this daughter? Anf no sign of mother and daughter on 1925 census - perhaps back in Conecticut at the time.
Cannot see a birth record for this Cornelia, which was in New York.
So not sure what to think now.

regards
John

Offline sbny357

  • RootsChat Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 174
  • Census information Crown Copyright, from www.nationalarchives.gov.uk
    • View Profile
Re: Ethel Sparks born New York c1890
« Reply #5 on: Thursday 22 November 18 07:42 GMT (UK) »
I agree with Shelly - all the evidence points to there being just one Clarence and one Ethel.

A and H sound similar, so they cant be used to indicate there are two different people.  And if Clarence and Ethel were still legally married, then Ethel might have said he was living with her even if he wasnt - especially after her mother died.

And the Connecticut marriage index shows C. Sparks and Cornelia Cleaveland were married 27 Nov 1929 in New Haven. So Clarence and Ethel were most likely still married in 1925.

Steve

Offline shellyesq

  • Moderator
  • RootsChat Marquessate
  • ********
  • Posts: 12,547
    • View Profile
Re: Ethel Sparks born New York c1890
« Reply #6 on: Thursday 22 November 18 12:26 GMT (UK) »
Also, I think the census takers are typically instructed to ask about whoever was there on the night of the census date.  It doesn't necessarily mean that the person was living there full-time.

Offline m23to53

  • RootsChat Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 158
  • Census information Crown Copyright, from www.nationalarchives.gov.uk
    • View Profile
Re: Ethel Sparks born New York c1890
« Reply #7 on: Thursday 22 November 18 14:31 GMT (UK) »
It's highly probable but, as the lawyer would say, all circumstantial. Would be great to get a positive fact linking them, like the divorce -but as I have no idea of place and date that appears a no-go. 

I was looking at the daughter, Cornelia Ruth, born 10 January 1924 (not the 24th as I said before). Ancestry has an index to NY births which quite comprehensive. A  Cornelia R(uth) Peterson was born on that date and appears on 1925 census with her mother Amelia C.  Makes one wonder if Cornelia Ruth Sparks was adopted - that index has 384 births on the 10 January and no other real possibility for the birth of the Sparks daughter. Whatever, not something I need to go into, but makes the story more interesting.

Thanks for your thoughts but seems this may have to end with "possible" dates for Ethel Sparks.

John

Offline shellyesq

  • Moderator
  • RootsChat Marquessate
  • ********
  • Posts: 12,547
    • View Profile
Re: Ethel Sparks born New York c1890
« Reply #8 on: Saturday 24 November 18 01:26 GMT (UK) »
The Amelia C. Peterson in the 1925 census in Brooklyn appears to be listed as wife, but no husband appears to be there.  It may be far-fetched, but could that be Cornelia going under another name?  She appears to be the same age as Cornelia, and I haven't been able to find anything that fits with Amelia showing up earlier or later. 

Also, I think birth records of adoptees typically got changed to the adoptive parents' names, so I don't know if they would be searchable on the birth index.