Sunday, May 18, 2014

Gustave Doyle - Sunday's Obituary, 52 Ancestors

At the death of his father, Gust Doyle, his son, Lee Doyle, became an orphan.  Yes, Lee was 20 at the time of his father's death in October, 1933, but this death left Lee with neither father nor mother:  his mother died when he was several weeks old.  The loss of his father must have been more than heart wrenching.

                Gustave Doyle
    Gustave Doyle died at his home
in Lake township at 7:10 o'clock this
morning, Wednesday, Oct. 4, 1933,
following a lingering illness.  Mr.
Doyle was 44 years, 10 months and
17 days old.
    Mr. Doyle was born and spent his
entire life on the same farm on
which he died.  He was born Nov.
17, 1888, a son of Mr. and Mrs. Wil-
liam Doyle.  On April 25, 1918, Mr.
Doyle was united in marriage to
Miss Twlia [sic] Ransom.  Surviving are
his wife and six children, Lee, Doro-
thy, Therese, Evelyn, Billy and Don-
ald.  His parents are living in
Stoneboro as is a sister, Mrs. Emma
Leathers.  Another sister, Mrs. Hazel
Emerson, resides in Maple, N. Y.
    He was a member of the Franklin
    Funeral services are to be con-
ducted from his late home Friday,
Oct. 2, at 3 o'clock.  Rev. S. S. Clark,
pastor of the First Baptist church
of Franklin, will have charge of the
services.  Interment is to be made
in the Oak Hill cemetery.

You can never be too careful about information in obituaries.  If someone with no knowledge of the Doyle family read this obituary, it would be easy to take it at face value and accept all the information as fact.  In fact, Twila Ransom was Gust's second wife and their children were Dorothy, Therese (known as Tressa), Evelyn, Billy, and Donald.  Lee was not the child of Gust and Twila but of Gust and his first wife, Beulah Gerner.

The only other error is that Mrs. Hazel (Doyle) Emerson lived in Naples, New York.

This is the second time in recent months that I've become aware of Gust Doyle being called Gustave in a newspaper article.  I doubt I'll ever get the full story on Gust's real name.  Gust Doyle, August Doyle, Gus Doyle, Gustave Doyle of Stoneboro, Pennsylvania:  they are all the same man.

Gust and its variations were popular names in that locality at the time my grandfather was born.  I see them often while looking through census records.  One of the men happens to be Gust Doyle's mother Tressa (Froman) Doyle's brother, Gust Froman, though as a child that Gust's name was noted as Augustus.  Perhaps my grandfather was named for his uncle or perhaps his parents chose it for its popularity. 

Reading this obituary makes me aware of the narrow life Gust must have lived, having spent all of his 44 years living on the same farm, being a farmer and a coal miner.  He was a dedicated husband and father who worked hard to provide a living for his family.  Might he have liked to travel, move to a different place, have a different occupation?  Or were the variety and challenges of operating a dairy farm satisfying work?  People of that time period often gave selflessly to do the right and honorable thing for those who depended upon them.  Gust was one of those dedicated men.

This obituary was published in the October 4, 1933 issue of the Greenville Record Argus.  It was originally in two columns with the first three lines at the bottom of one column and the rest of the obituary at the top of another column.  I cropped them and arranged them in one column for easier reading and posting.

The obituary was a gift from Dayna, a researcher of a family line that meets mine with Tressa Doyle Wilson.  Thank you, Dayna.

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This post is in response to Amy Johnson Crow's call to her readers to write about 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks



  1. You have to wonder WHO gave the information to the paper or to the funeral home if the funeral director relayed the info to the paper as is done here where I live.

    1. I do often wonder that, Wendy. And I also wonder if one person in the family was designated (unofficially or by default) to give the information to both the newspaper &/or funeral director and for the death certificate. At least for the death certificate the informant is usually named, but not for the newspaper. In this case, his name was recorded as Gust on the death certificate. Probably two different people gave the information.


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