Jeanette McCall McEwen – Death Certificate 1897 – 1931

4744 Langley. Jeanette on stoop with son Robert with google maps photograph.

I received Jennette McCall McEwen’s death certificate in the mail this week.  I wrote about her earlier here and here.  Here is the new information I gleaned both from the death certificate and from a re-reading of other documents I have for this family.

According to both the 1920 census and Robert junior’s birth certificate, the family was rooming at 4744 Langley in Chicago, IL.  See a photo of the house above.  Little Robert was born at home on January 2.  Robert Sr. worked at the post office.

Provident Hospital

On December 16, 1923 second son, Raymond was born in Provident Hospital, one of the first black owned and operated hospitals in the United States.  Robert Sr. was a dental student while Jeanette continued to work inside the home.  The family had moved to 652 E. 46th St.

By the time of the 1930 Census Robert Sr was a practicing dentist.  Jeanette was not working outside of the home. When I first found Robert and Jeanette in the 1930 census several years ago, I wondered why they had no children because I had heard that they were the parents of two boys.  After looking at the neighbors I found that 10 year old Robert Jr and 7 year old Raymond were living as lodgers in the apartment of Harry and Zada McClatchey.  At the time I thought it must be a mistake, but after looking at the death certificate I realized there was a good reason for the boys to be out of the home.

Jeanette died at home of influenza on December 27, 1931.  The informant, the person who gave the personal information on the certificate, was her older brother Leon Roscoe McCall.  Her doctor was her brother-in-law Joseph Howard, MD.  He had begun treating her on Christmas day, although she became ill on the 20th of December. A contributory cause was “phthisis pulmonalis” or consumption.  Jeanette found that she had tuberculosis in February of 1930. The Census took place in April. Robert and Raymond were probably out of the house to keep them from being infected.  She had been unable to continue to do her usual work as a housewife since July 1931. Jeanette McCall McEwen was buried in Lincoln Cemetery in Cook County on December 30, 1931.  Now I’ll send for Robert McEwen’s death certificate to see if he also died of tuberculosis.


9 thoughts on “Jeanette McCall McEwen – Death Certificate 1897 – 1931

  1. I agree with Hummer. Yesterday it was a fantastic collage and today it's a fantastic overlay. I'm assuming that's what you did with the picture on the stoop, too? What a great find. Can't wait to see what you find out about her husband.
    Kathy Reed

  2. Yes, it is the same thing on the stoop. I was so thrilled when I realized the building on google was the same one I had with her on the stoop. When I was doing the death certificate I kept thinking about the picture I have where she is so alive and so I put them together. I got the idea from the Family Curator's Photograph Day exercise that I did on my other blog here I love photographs and information and using them together.

  3. I also love the way you are using the image overlays here. It definitely adds something special to the photos.

  4. I can't help but think about those boys – nearby but presumably kept away from their mother to keep them safe. My father tells of being ill as a child in the 1930s – scarlet fever, I think – and quarantined. His father would come to the window and wave to him. I cannot imagine how one would cope.

    Great job on this, Kristin. It all works so well together.

  5. Very nice, Kristin. That history brings back memories of Chicago. Nice image with the death certificate too.

  6. I love the way you are bringing together past and present. Great story and great photos.

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