Thursday, October 13, 2011

Coincidence... I Think Not!

Over several years of hunting Pomeroys I’ve come across too many “coincidences” to keep track of. It seems that whenever one of us starts to research a particular Pomeroy, inevitably we will receive and e-mail or phone call from one of that Pomeroy’s descendants! I’ve got a great story to share that illustrates this case in point.

As many of you know, I and my husband are both musicians, and we’ve been regularly frequenting some open mics in our community. As we get to know our fellow musicians, the topic of profession often comes up. It’s always fun to explain what I do for a living, and I usually preface this conversation with “I have the best job in the world!” (And I do!)

Lately, several musician friends have approached me with their own Pomeroy stories. One of the most interesting is that of a Sheridan family who were living in Otisco, NY in the 1850s. Both parents died within about a year of each other, and their children were orphaned. My friend, and fellow musician, is a descendant of that family, and he told me that he had copies of records that identify Lemuel Strong Pomeroy as being named guardian of these children.

LEMUEL STRONG POMEROY! My heart leapt! Our researcher, Alethea Connolly, has been working on the Otisco Pomeroys, of which Lemuel has become one of our favorites!

In looking into the Pomeroy/Sheridan connection, we found that another Otisco Pomeroy, Flavius Burt Pomeroy, Lemuel’s second cousin, had Jennie Sheridan in his household according to the 1865 New York State Census. She is identified as a “ward”. Jennie POMEROY is found living in the Flavius Burt Pomeroy household according to the 1870 U.S. Federal Census. A.A. Pomeroy, in his book “History and Genealogy of the Pomeroy Family”, identified Jennie Pomeroy, born May 19, 1853 as a daughter of Flavius Burt Pomeroy and his wife Sophronia Clark. He states that Jennie married Henry Billings 15 Oct 1879 in South Butler, N.Y., who was born 20 Jul 1847 in Clyde, NY. In volume III of “The History and Genealogy of the Pomeroy Family”, a correction is made stating that Jennie married Henry Kellogg “(not “Henry Billings”) as printed on page 586 of Part Two”.

Well, last evening, one of our APHGA Members, Walt P. contacted me regarding his Pomeroy family, and low and behold another crazy Pomeroy circle was completed. You see, Walt is a descendant of Flavius Burt Pomeroy, and had mentioned in his e-mail that he had two old photo albums purportedly belonging to Flavius. Unfortunately, most of these pictures are not marked, so he has no way of knowing who these people are. There were a few, though, that contained the names “Aunt Jennie Kellogg” and “Henry Kellogg”. Walt had read one of my recent blog articles and the name Kellogg rang a bell with him, and he contacted me to see if I might know who these Kelloggs were.

I checked our database and my jaw dropped when I realized that Jennie Kellogg was, indeed, Jennie M. Sheridan! I rushed off a short e-mail to my musician friend, and then wrote back to Walt, explaining who Jennie was, and how we had come to find out about her. If I hadn’t had that conversation about the Sheridans with my musician friend, we may never have known that Jennie Pomeroy was really Jennie Sheridan!

Walt has graciously offered to scan the photos in his albums so that I can share them with the Sheridan family, and post them on our website. Who knows, maybe some other family researcher is looking for these people as we speak. Wouldn’t THAT be a coincidence?!

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