Thursday, December 23, 2010

APHGA Blog Post for December 23, 2010

The Great A. A. Pomeroy Book Update Project

Below are a number of newspaper articles we found a while back, that I thought would be fun to read. We haven’t identified the “Zerad Pomeroy” of whom the articles speak, but perhaps our readers will recognize him.

From the Logansport Journal, Logansport, IN, 6 Nov 1902, Page 2:

Is now on his twelfth wedding trip – latest spouse is the granddaughter of his first wife’s sister.

PROVIDENCE, R.I., Nov. 6. – Zerad Pomeroy, hale and hearty at 89, is here on his twelfth honeymoon. He was had eleven brides before. The present one is twenty-two, winsome and pretty, and her elderly husband is mighty proud of her red cheeks and glossy hair.
His brides literally range from Maine to California. His last wife is a relative of his first. One of his wives came from Providence, and this is his second honeymoon here. He hails from Middlefield, Conn., now.
“She’s an angel,” said the old man of his newest wife before he sat down today to tell of the other eleven.
Zerad Pomeroy was less than twenty when he first ventured into matrimony. The bride’s name was Miss Nellie White. They were exceedingly happy but she died young. They then lived in Maine. In Kensington, Conn., the young widower lost his heart again. Mrs. Pomeroy No. 2 was Miss Agnes Platt. Pomeroy got the gold fever and took his wife with him, but she never reached the Golden Gate. She was buried at sea. On the ship was Miss Welcome Tait. She consoled the disconsolate husband so tenderly that he asked her to be Mrs. Pomeroy No. 3. She accepted promptly.
The newly wedded couple finally started for Japan, not striking gold. The wife died at sea from fever. Pomeroy returned to the Pacific coast disconsolate for the third time only to meet Miss Minerva Greene. The honeymoon with Miss Pomeroy No. 4 was hardly ended when the wife fell ill and died. Lonely and miserable, Pomeroy came to New York. There he met the woman destined to be his fifth bride, Miss Dollie Perkins, a concert hall singer. Two days after the wedding she disappeared with a goodly share of his money, and he got a divorce.
Miss Martha Anschutz was the sixth wife, but she died three months after the wedding. For two years Pomeroy lived alone. But then at his boarding-house Miss Mary Olney sang her way into Pomeroy’s heart, and at length she became his seventh bride. They set up housekeeping, but one night the wife took poison by mistake for medicine and died.
Bride No. 8 was Miss Nettie Halpin. She announced that she was tired of young men and chose the now middle-aged multi-widower. But another had her heart, after all, and for the second time the husband got a divorce.
Next time the lonesome Pomeroy tried a widow. Mrs. Mary Davis became Mrs. Pomeroy No. 9. She was taken ill before her wedding day, and never left her bed once she took it. The tenth bride was Miss Minnie Goode, a Sunday-school teacher here. She soon died from heart disease. Mrs. Mary Wilcox, a widow, met Pomeroy at Middlefield, and he married her. Of all his wives she was the only one older than himself. Mrs. Pomeroy No. 11 died last spring, aged ninety.
At the funeral the weeping widower met Miss Nellie Wilcox, no relative of her immediate predecessor, but the grand-daughter of the sister of Mrs. Pomeroy No. 1. The courtship was short and they were married. Mrs. Pomeroy and her aged husband joined the church and don’t care what folks say about the disparity in their ages.
“I fell in love with her at first sight” said old Pomeroy, concluding his narrative. “She’s accomplished in everything except speaking in meeting.”
Mrs. Pomeroy isn’t a bit superstitious and looks forward to a long life and a happy one.

From The Lowell Sun, Lowell, MA, 27 Oct 1902, pg 2:

Zerad Pomeroy Makes Another Venture
Present Wife Related to First One
Zerad Says Marriage is Not Failure

By Associated Press to The Sun.
PROVIDENCE, Oct. 26 – Zerad Pomeroy, a Connecticut bridegroom of 89, was in this city yesterday on a honeymoon trip with his 12th wife, who is only 22 years old and as pretty as a picture.
Providence is not a strange place to the aged but energetic husband. He was married here once some years ago, and his Rhode Island bride died from heart failure. She had been a sufferer from the affliction for a long time before he met her at a Sunday school meeting. Her name was Miss Minnie Goode and she belonged to a good family.
The new bride was Miss Nettie Wilcox, and she is related to the first of the dozen wives that Zerad Pomeroy has to his credit. She says she is the granddaughter of her husband’s first wife’s sister. Mr. Pomeroy says his latest wife is an angel, and that he has had sufficient experience to know just what he is talking about.
Mr. Pomeroy, who is a descendant of the family of that name which settled in the wilds of Maine over 200 years ago, is as rugged at the present time as the average man of 40 years. He has been in almost all parts of the world, and his list of marriages covers the entire breadth of the country. One of his wives he found in California.
Mrs. Pomeroy does not think that marriage is a failure, and he says that men should marry young. The first bride of the remarkable bridegroom was the playmate of his youth and he was less than 20 years old when they agreed to become man and wife. Her name was Nellie White. She was a perfect wife, but she died young.

From The Sun, Fort Covington, NY, 22 Jan 1903:

Twelve Times Married.
Zerad Pomeroy, of Middlefield, Conn., has just, at the age of eighty-nine, married his twelfth wife. He began his matrimonial career in 1833, when he was twenty years old. In the early part of his career he not only married frequently, but rapidly. He had only been a husband a year when No. 1 died, and in a few months he married again, and when that wife died at sea his eye was speedily attracted to another, and a third marriage soon followed. In New York, where he settled for a time, he had six spouses, four of whom died, one disappeared, and one he divorced. His last wife is the grand-daughter of Mr. Pomeroy’s first wife. – New York Commercial Advertiser.

From The Rome Citizen, Rome, NY, 4 Nov 1902

Zerad Pomeroy is a Rhode Islander who does not allow any superstitious fancies to interfere with his domestic felicity. He has buried a dozen wives and has just married his thirteenth, which he claims to be the best of the lot.

From Tuapeka Times, Lawrence, New Zealand, 21 Jan 1903, p 2:

A YANKEE named Zerad Pomeroy, aged 89, has just married his twelfth wife, aged 22. The bride was a grand-daughter of the sister of the bridegroom’s first wife. Nine wives died, and two were divorced, one after disappearing with all his cash two days after the wedding.

From The San Francisco Chronicle, San Francisco, CA, 29 Sep 1902, p 3, col. 3:


Connecticut Man Selects a Twenty-two-Year-Old Girl to Round Out the Dozen.

MERIDEN (Conn.). September 28. – Zerad Pomeroy of Middlefield has taken another wife. He is 89 and she is 22, and this is Pomeroy’s twelfth matrimonial venture. The new Mrs. Pomeroy is the granddaughter of her husband’s first wife’s sister.
Pomeroy in 1838, when twenty years old, married Nellie White of Hartford. A year later she died, and Pomeroy wedded a Kensington young woman named Platt. When the gold fever of 1849 sent many men to California Pomeroy and his wife were among twenty Meriden people who chartered a boat out of New Haven and sailed around the Horn to the Pacific Coast. During the voyage Mrs. Pomeroy died and was buried at sea. A young woman aboard the vessel attracted Pomeroy’s attention, and another marriage soon followed. From California Pomeroy went to Japan, and there his third wife died.
Returning to this country, he again married and came East. He settled in New York city, where six wives fell to his lot. Four died, one disappeared and one he divorced. Returning to this State he married again and that wife died last spring.

So, as we can see, the news is not always accurate, the fourth or fifth time around!

We’ve done some research but have reached nothing but dead ends. Does anyone know this Pomeroy?

Happy Holidays everyone, from our Pomeroy research desks to yours.


  1. Hmmm as a former Police Officer, a lot of them died of illness, and took poison by mistake? Is he related to Jesse.

  2. While there is certainly a suggestion that Zared Pomeroy was some sort of Bluebeard, my curiosity is turned more toward wondering what, other than being described "as rugged at the present time as the average man of 40 years," enabled him to attract so many young wives, even at 89.


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