Saturday, February 9, 2019

Married Fifty Years - Saturday Night Genealogy Fun

Thanks to Randy of GeneaMusings and Marcia Philbrick of Heartland Genealogy for the Saturday Night Genealogy Fun this week.  

This week's challenge was to answer these questions.
How many of your ancestors were married for FIFTY years?  What is the longest marriage of your ancestors in your tree (from marriage to first death of a spouse, or divorce)?

I guessed there would be few long marriages among my ancestors because it seemed like there were so many early deaths.  I was surprised to learn how wrong I was.  You may also notice that some marriages are not included; that's because I don't have accurate dates for them or do not know who the ancestors are.

These are my ancestors and the lengths of their marriages:

My parents
Lee and Audrey Meinzen Doyle - 49 years (1938-1987)

My grandparents
Gust and Beulah Mae (Gerner) Doyle - 1 year 3 months (1911-1913)
W. C. Robert Meinzen & Emma Bickerstaff - 59 years (1914-1973)

My great-grandparents
William and Tressa Rose (Froman) Doyle - 51 years (1885-1936)
Frederick K. and Elvira (Bartley) Gerner - 53 years (1872-1926)
Henry C. and Elizabeth (Armitage) Meinzen - 50 years (1870-1920)
Edward Jesse and Mary (Thompson) Bickerstaff - 49 years (1891-1940)

My great-great-grandparents
Andrew & Elizabeth Jane (Laws) Doyle - 45 years (1863-1908)
John and Catherine (Saylor) Froman - abt. 10 years (~1861-1871)
Christian and Mary/Elizabeth (Stahl) - unknown
Dixon and Rebecca (Smith) Bartley - 61-63 years (~1836/1838-1899)
Abel and Eliza (Hartley) Armitage - 9 years (1847-1856)
Ellis and Emma V. (Nelson) Bickerstaff - 17 years (1861-1878)
John and Lydia (Bell) Thompson - 51 years (1872-1923)

My great-great-great-grandparents
William and Martha (Reay) Doyle - 13 years (1825-1838
Robert and Elizabeth (Thompson) Laws - 47 years (1834-1881)
Jacob and Elizabeth (Shaefer) Saylor - 20 years (1838-~1858)
William and Susanna/Susan (Holmes) Bickerstaff - 63 years (1830-1893)

Across five generations:
Only seven of my ancestral couples had marriages of 50 years or longer.
The longest marriage was 63 years.  Another couple may have been married 63 years (but the marriage year is still uncertain).

Thanks for the Saturday Night Genealogy Fun, Randy and Marcia.


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  1. This looks like it was a fun challenge. You have quite a wide range of marriage lengths. I suppose that is typical of any family tree. I'll have to take a look at my tree to see who is the longest married. Nice post!

    1. Thank you, Colleen. I was surprised to see so many long marriages.


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