Monday, April 13, 2015

John Edward Blake, Mary Ann Lavin, and their children

John Blake and Mary (Lavin) Blake were my great-great-grandparents. Their daughter Elizabeth (Blake) Gotsche was my great-grandmother, and her daughter Mary (Gotsche) Thielen was my grandmother.

John Edward Blake
born October 29, 1847 in County Clare, Ireland
died November 18, 1909 in Ashland, Ashland County, Wisconsin

Mary Ann (Lavin) Blake
born August 18, 1849 in Goderich, Huron County, Ontario
died August 18, 1894 in Ashland, Ashland County, Wisconsin

John Edward Blake was born on the Loop Head peninsula in County Clare, Ireland to Michael Blake and Johanna (Jordan) Blake, the fourth of their seven children. The family immigrated from Ireland to Ontario sometime between 1856 and 1859. On October 22, 1867, John married Mary Ann Lavin at Saint Peter Catholic Church in Goderich. Mary was the daughter of Patrick Lavin and Anastasia "Anna" (Glavin) Lavin. She was baptized on September 23, 1849 at the same church where she later was married.

Shortly after their wedding, John and Mary moved to Laketon, Muskegon County, Michigan. John worked in a lumber mill, and continued to do so for the rest of his life. John and Mary had nine children in Muskegon between 1868 and 1885. In 1890, John and Mary moved to Ashland with six of their children. Mary died in 1894, and John died in 1909 at the home of his daughter Mayme. Both attended Saint Agnes Catholic Church in Ashland, and are buried in the church cemetery.

Their nine children:
  1. Hannah Blake (1868-1869)
  2. John Robert Blake (1870-1942)
  3. Catherine Blake (1872-1873)
  4. Thomas Edward “Tom” Blake (1875-1946)
  5. Michael Edward Blake (1876-1929)
  6. Ellen Elizabeth “Nellie” (Blake) McMahon (1878-1957)
  7. Mary Ann “Mayme” (Blake) Dundas (1881-1969)
  8. Martha Bernice “Mattie” (Blake) Kandutsch (1882-1952)
  9. Elizabeth B. (Blake) Gotsche (1885-1953)
1. Hannah Blake
born October 15, 1868 in Laketon, Muskegon County, Michigan
died August 15, 1869 in Laketon, Muskegon County, Michigan

Hannah died of dysentery when she was less than a year old.

2. John Robert Blake
born January 5, 1870 in Laketon, Muskegon County, Michigan
died May 26, 1942 in Muskegon, Muskegon County, Michigan

When the rest of the family moved to Ashland, John, then twenty years old, remained in Muskegon. He worked as a shingle maker, in retail, and as a factory laborer. John married Margaret M. Cayo on June 23, 1909 at Saint Jean Baptiste Catholic Church in Muskegon. Margaret died on September 13, 1964 in Muskegon. They had six children: Margaret, Dorothy, Maryon, John, Thomas, and Patricia. Both John and Margaret are buried in Saint Mary's Cemetery in Muskegon.

3. Catherine Blake
born September 2, 1872 in Muskegon, Muskegon County, Michigan
died September 11, 1873 in Laketon, Muskegon County, Michigan

Catherine died of a fever just after her first birthday.

4. Thomas Edward “Tom” Blake
born January 14, 1875 in Muskegon, Muskegon County, Michigan
died January 19, 1946 in Hibbing, Saint Louis County, Minnesota
Elizabeth Gotsche & Thomas Blake

Tom was born in Muskegon and moved with most of the family to Ashland in 1890. On December 23, 1899, he married Blanch Rose Woolever in Kenosha, Kenosha County, Wisconsin. Tom and Blanch lived in Kenosha in 1900, and they had one son, also named Thomas Edward Blake. Blanch died of tuberculosis on February 4, 1903 in Saint Paul, Ramsey County, Minnesota, and was buried at Oakland Cemetery in Saint Paul. Their son, who later became a surfing pioneer, was adopted by Tom's uncle and aunt, James and Sarah Anne (Quigley) Blake.

Tom Blake married Hedwig “Hattie” Schaetzle on August 8, 1905 in Grand Rapids, Kent County, Michigan. Hattie died July 5, 1967, in Lackawanna, Erie County, New York. They lived in Muskegon for a few years before moving to Hibbing, where Tom worked as a steward at a club house for a local mining company. They also lived in Ashland, where Hattie worked as a dispatcher for a cab company after Tom's death. Tom and Hattie had seven children: John, Mary, Louis, Beatrice, Lois, and William. Louis, known as Bob, was a well-known ice hockey player. Tom and Hattie also adopted Elsie Kastner, one of Hattie's nieces, as well as Elsie's daughter, Mary. Both Tom and Hattie are buried at Saint Agnes Cemetery in Ashland.

5. Michael Edward Blake
born March 23, 1876 in Lakeside, Muskegon County, Michigan
died November 17, 1929 in Milwaukee, Milwaukee County, Wisconsin

Michael was born outside of Muskegon, and lived there until at least 1884. Michael married Theresa Mary "Blanche" Gebus on November 7, 1904, in La Crosse, La Crosse County, Wisconsin, but was no longer living with her by 1910, when he was living in Milwaukee. Theresa died on December 4, 1918, in Milwaukee and was buried in Gate of Heaven Cemetery in Marshfield, Wood County, Wisconsin. Michael worked as a barber for the Schlitz Hotel and continued to live in Milwaukee until his death in 1929. Michael is buried in Saint Agnes Cemetery in Ashland.

6. Ellen Elizabeth “Nellie” (Blake) McMahon
born November 30, 1878 in Muskegon, Muskegon County, Michigan
died September 25, 1957 in Ashland, Ashland County, Wisconsin

Nellie was born in Muskegon and moved with her parents to Ashland when she was eleven. On November 28, 1907, she married Hugh D. McMahon. Hugh was a conductor for the Chicago, Saint Paul, Minneapolis and Omaha Railway and died in an accident in which his leg was run over by a train car on October 16, 1909 in Spooner, Washburn County, Wisconsin. His obituary ran under the headline “A Tragedy of the Rail.” After Hugh's death, Nellie worked as a saleslady at a department store in Ashland. Nellie and Hugh had two children, an unnamed infant son and Hugh. Nellie is buried next to her husband and infant son at Saint Agnes Cemetery.

Mayme Dundas
7. Mary Ann “Mayme” (Blake) Dundas
born July 13, 1881 in Muskegon, Muskegon County, Michigan
died August 23, 1969 in Kenosha, Kenosha County, Wisconsin

Mayme moved with the family to Ashland and worked as a housekeeper before she married John Fletcher Dixon “Fletcher” Dundas on October 7, 1903 in Ashland. They had two children, Marjorie and John. Fletcher worked as an engineer for the Chicago & Northwestern Railway. Fletcher died on October 30, 1959 in Ashland. Mayme was Catholic like her parents and siblings while Fletcher was raised as an Anglican. Therefore, Mayme is buried in the Catholic Saint Agnes Cemetery in Ashland, while Fletcher is buried across the street in the secular Mount Hope Cemetery.

8. Martha Bernice “Mattie” (Blake) Kandutsch
born February 8, 1882 in Muskegon, Muskegon County, Michigan
died January 26, 1952 in Phillips, Price County, Wisconsin

Mattie was baptized on March 1, 1882. When she was eight years old, she moved with her family from Muskegon to Ashland. She later became a registered nurse. Mattie married Frank Joseph Kandutsch in Ashland on May 30, 1905. Mattie and her family moved around more than her siblings, while remaining in the northwoods of Wisconsin. In 1905, they were living in Woodboro, Oneida County, Wisconsin, moving back to Ashland later that year. They also lived in Kennan, Price County, Wisconsin; Park Falls, Price County, Wisconsin; and Phillips. While Mattie remained a nurse, Frank worked at various jobs, including as a railway agent, bank cashier, and city clerk, before becoming an insurance agent, eventually owning his own company. Mattie and Frank had six children: Albert, Frank, Anthony, Mary, Charles, and Hugo. Mattie died in 1952 and Frank died on November 28, 1954 in Phillips. They both are buried at Saint Patrick Catholic Cemetery in Phillips.

9. Elizabeth B. (Blake) Gotsche
born September 9, 1885 in Muskegon, Muskegon County, Michigan
died February 13, 1953 in Racine, Racine County, Wisconsin
Elmer & Elizabeth Gotsche

Elizabeth was born in Muskegon in 1885, though later in life she claimed her birth year was 1888, making herself three years younger and therefore closer in age to her husband. She moved with her family to Ashland when she was five. Elizabeth went to Milwaukee to study nursing at Trinity Hospital School for Nurses, which later merged with Marquette University. After she graduated in 1908, she worked at Marquette Hospital for several years. She met Elmer Ferdinand Gotsche and they were married on May 11, 1921 in Ashland, Ashland County, Wisconsin, after originally scheduling their wedding for the previous day in Madison, Dane County, Wisconsin. They moved to Elmer's hometown of Racine, where they lived for the rest of their lives, spending most of that time on Blaine Boulevard (later renamed Blaine Avenue). Elmer worked in town as a dentist. Elizabeth and Elmer adopted one daughter, Mary. After Elmer's death on September 25, 1941 in Racine due to a heart attack, Elizabeth returned to work as a registered nurse. She died in Racine on February 13, 1953. Elmer is buried next to his parents and siblings at Mound Cemetery in Racine. Elizabeth is buried at Holy Cross Catholic Cemetery in Caledonia, Racine County, Wisconsin, next to her granddaughter and son-in-law's parents.

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