Category Archives: Allen

Cousins on the Running Board

Cousins Annie Lee Pope Gilmer & Jeanette McCall McEwan and sons. The boys are Charles E Gilmer, Robert and Raymond McEwen. Photo taken 1923.

From the drafts file.

Annie Lee Pope and Jeanette McCall were first cousins born in Montgomery, Alabama. They were daughters of the oldest and youngest daughters of Eliza, for whom this blog is named.

Annie Lee Pope and her twin brother Charles were born January 31, 1902 in Montgomery, Alabama. She was one of the set of twins born to Robert and Beulah (Allen) Pope. Their younger, Robert Pope was born seven years later. Her father Robert Pope completed four years of college and worked as a clerk and a porter through the years at a wholesale drug business. Her mother Beulah was a seamstress.

Annie Lee completed two years at Rust College in Holly Springs, Mississippi In 1921 at 19 she married Ludie Thaniel Gilmer, in Chicago. Perhaps she was visiting Jeanette. Soon afterwards he became a physician. They moved to Milwaukee, Wisconsin where their son, Charles E. Gilmer born in 1922. Annie Lee did not work outside of the home.

Jeanette was born on February 18, 1897 in Montgomery, Alabama. She was the youngest of the six children of Edward and Mary (Allen) McCall.  Her oldest brother, James McCall was the blind poet in She was owned before the war by…. Her father, Edward McCall, was the cook and turn-key at the city jail. Her mother, Mary Allen McCall, was a seamstress.  Jeanette attended Alabama State Normal school, a primary through high school for African Americans in Montgomery that all of her siblings and cousins attended.

Jeanette also attended Rust College in Holly Springs, Mississippi and met her husband, Robert Anderson McEwen there.  Robert and Jeanette were married on 8 April 1918, in Iowa while he was in the service. In the 1920 census they were living in Chicago as roomers.  On January 2, 1920 she gave birth to her first son, Robert Jr.  Robert Sr. worked at the post office.  By the time their second son, Raymond, was born  on December 16, 1923, Robert was a dental student.  Jeanette did not work outside of the home.

By 1929 Robert was a dentist.  Jeanette died December 22, 1931 of influenza, exacerbated by consumption. You may see another photograph of Jeanette here.  Robert remarried before 1938 to Ethel Martha Goins. She was his nurse during his hospitalization at the end of his life. He died of a heart attack on June 29, 1938.  

Click for more faces in search of a backstory.

Unidentified Man With Car

Unidentified man with car. I think 1940s.
My mother Doris Graham and friend Constance Stowers.

This unlabeled photograph was found in my Graham grandparent’s photographs. It shows a young man standing in front of my grandparent’s house by a car, which may be their car. The background house is the same one in the photograph of my mother and her friend.

Although I believed this to be Caruso Martin, my mother’s second cousin because I thought he looksed like little Caruso in the photo below. I just received an email from a Martin/Martino descendant who informs me that based on having met Caruso, who was his cousin, he does not think that this mystery man is him. So, back to being an unidentified man with a car again. Oh well, those unidentified photos are so frustrating and now I’m wondering if when I think I’ve finally identified them, I actually haven’t. It was nice to meet a cousin through my blog at any rate!

In 1940 Caruso was living with his mother, his stepfather and three step-brothers in Detroit. His mother was born in Alabama and had four years of high school. She did not work outside of the home. His stepfather was born in Italy and had had no schooling. He worked as a machine repairman at an auto manufacturer. His income during the previous year was $2,000.

All of the young people in the house had been born in the United States and gone through the 8th grade. The oldest son was 24 and married. He worked as a garage man at the City Water Co. He earned $1040. His wife did not work outside of the home. The second son was 21 and unemployed, and had been unemployed all year.

Caruso was 19 and worked as a linen folder in a linen supply company. He had worked 52 weeks during the past year and earned $1,000. His 19 year old step-brother worked at the same place and made $988 during the previous 23 weeks.

Annabelle and Caruso were listed as “Negro”. The Champine’s were listed as “white”. Annabelle McCall Champine, Caruso’s mother, was the person who gave the information to the census taker.

Annie Belle McCall Martin with youngest son Caruso in front. Her cousin, my grandmother Fannie Graham holding son Mershell. Two of Annie Belle’s daughters, my grandfather Mershell Graham. In front my aunt Mary V. Graham. Photo taken in Detroit about 1923.

Below are two sad stories about the Martin family in 1923, when the husband and father died of typhoid while on a musical family trip from Florida to their home in Lima, Ohio.


Their Mother Returns From a Business Trip to Ohio- Children Were Jumpint to a Conclusion That She Had Deserted Sick Husband – Bible Classes Make Contribution.

The Martinos are happy again- as happy as a family can be when their father lies seriously ill. Their mother came back to them yesterday afternoon and Welfare Officer W. W. Holland and a group of representative Statesville women who heard her story today at his office are convinced that the children were jumping to a conclusion when they assumed she had deserted them and her sick husband for another man. “When I heard how well-bred the children were, I knew their mother was the right kind of woman,” remarked one of the group. “I wasn’t ready to believe the story about her.”

The trouble came about in this way, Mrs. Martino stated. Jeff her son by a former marriage, couldn’t get along with the Martino boys, sons of her husband by his first marriage. When they got into trouble, she could not side against her own son, she remarked; he was as much hers as the other children. Matters came to a head when her husband gave Jeff a whipping and put him outside to ride on a fender – they travel from place to place in their truck.

The only way out, she decided, was to take her son to her mother. This she did, pawning two of her rings in Salisbury to buy tickets to their home in LIma, O. She had no idea of going off with their manager, she said: and that she left Salisbury the same day she left her family, leaving him there. “He was nothing but a spendthrift,” she said; “I would have been ambitious – a mother of children – to have gone off with him, wouldn’t I?”

Letters have passed between her husband and herself since she went away. At Lima, where they are paying on a home, she planted her garden and wrote to her husband asking him to bring the children there, she said. She wanted to quit the road anyway, as it no longer agreed with her. Mrs. Martino gives the impression of being a thoroughly good woman and the children were more than glad to have her back again. The The other two children she took with her to Lima returned with her.

Yesterday morning the five children who were here played several sacred selections at the Men’s Bible class of the Broad Street Methodist church. Mr. Holland related their story. The members contributed #91 to a fund for their benefit. Contributions from another class brought up the total to $104. Their father remains seriously ill at the Davis Hospital with typhoid, though reported slightly better today.

Note: In 1923, Anna Belle’s mother, Mary Allen McCall lived in Detroit. Perhaps the photo taken above with my grandparents was taken during this trip to drop off her oldest son. The youngest three children are in the picture and they accompanied her.


Death Claims E. N. Martino

Father of Italian Children Emcamped at Court House Passes Away After Protacted Illness.

Mr. E. N.. Martino died died Monday at Davis Hospital, after a protracted illness. He was brought here some weeks since from Mooresville, where he had stopped with his family in their journey by truck from Florida to his home in LIma, Ohio. At one time he had rallied to treatment an his recovery was anticipated. He was 56 years old. The funeral service and interment were at Oakwood cemetery Tuesday at 4 o’clock with Rev. John W. Moore officiating.

Surviving are the widow and eight children, all but one here with her, encamped by their truck on the north side of the court house. They are Napier, Estill, Anna Maria, Eddie, Geneva, Thelma and Caruso, three years old. The oldest son is 1. Mrs. Martino plans to leave for for Lima, where they are paying on a home, next week.


For more about the Martin family, including photos, click these links
Oh, Dry Those Tears! (1901)
The Midget Band
More About Annabell’s Family

Click for more Sepia Saturday posts

Dock and Eliza Animated

Eliza Williams Allen

Today I found a new app on My Heritage, Deep Nostalgia. It takes still photographs of faces and animates them. It was a bit strange, who knows if that is how the actual people moved when they were alive and moving. It was interesting to play around with though.

Below is are animated photos of Eliza (who this blog is named for) and Dock Allen, my 2X great grandparents through the maternal line. Click links below to see animations.

Eliza’s Children Move North

Migration routes of Eliza’s children.
Mary Allen McCall

Mary Allen, Eliza’s oldest daughter, was born in 1856 in Dallas County, Alabama. The family relocated to Montgomery after Freedom. She married Edward McCall and they had six children together. One died in infancy.

In 1920, when Mary McCall was 63, her husband died. Later that year her oldest son, James Edward McCall and his family, migrated to Detroit. Mary McCall moved with them. She died there in 1937.

Mary McCall’s surviving children all left Montgomery and moved north.

  1. James Edward McCall migrated to Detroit in 1920.
  2. Anna Belle McCall Martin moved several times, arriving in Lima, Ohio in 1922. She moved to Detroit in 1930 and lived there for many years before moving to California.
  3. Leon Roscoe McCall migrated to Detroit in 1920 with his family. Several years later, they moved to Chicago, IL.
  4. William McCall died as an infant.
  5. Alma Otilla McCall Howard lived in Holly Springs Mississippi before the family migrated to Chicago by 1930.
  6. Jeanette McCall McEwen was in Chicago by 1920.


Ransom Allen

Ransom Allen was born in 1860 Dallas County AL. He migrated to Chicago with his wife by 1920.

John Wesley Allen, his only child, was in Chicago by June 5, 1917.


Dock Allen Jr was born in 1862. He died by drowning in 1891 in Montgomery.


"Jennie and Lizzie"
Jennie Virginia Allen Turner

Jennie Virginia Allen Turner was born in 1866 Montgomery. Her first husband Howard Turner died in 1890. She separated from her second husband Edward Wright before 1910. She migrated to Detroit with her younger daughters, Daisy and Alice, in 1922 to join her oldest daughter, Fannie Mae Turner Graham(my grandmother) after she married and moved there in 1919.


Anna Allen

Anna Allen was born Montgomery 1869. She left Montgomery for Chicago before 1900.  She passed for white and died in Chicago after 1945.


"Willie Lee and Naomi Vincent"
Willie Lee Allen Tulane and daughter Naomi. Montgomery, about 1910.

Willie Lee Allen Tulane was born in 1873 in Montgomery. Her husband, Victor Tulane, died in 1931 in Montgomery. She remained there until 1958. Several months before she died, she moved to New York City to live with her only surviving child, Naomi Tulane Vincent who had moved to New York in 1920 after marrying Ubert Vincent.


Abbie Allen Brown

Abbie Allen Brown was born in 1876 in Montgomery. She married Edward Brown. They were divorced before 1900.

She moved to Detroit in 1946 and lived with her niece, Fannie Turner Graham and her family. She died there in 1966.

Both of her sons moved to New York. The oldest, Earl Brown, lived in New York by 1917. The other, Alphonso Brown was in New York by 1925.


Beulah Allen Pope

Beulah Allen Pope was born in 1879 in Montgomery. She married Robert Pope. He died in 1941, in Montgomery. By 1948 She had moved to Milwaukee, WI to live with her oldest son, Charles Lee Pope. She died there in 1962. In addition to her son Charles, her daughter Annie Lee Pope Gilmer also lived in Milwaukee. Her youngest son Robert Pope and his family had moved to Chicago by 1942.

Charles Lee Pope – Moved to Milwaukee, Wisconsin by 1926.
Annie Lee Pope Gilmer married and was in Milwaukee by 1922.
Robert Pope and family were in Chicago by 1942.


They left in this order:

Anna moved to Chicago alone between 1880 and 1900.

Ransom moved to Chicago with his wife, son and daughter-in-law between 1917 and 1920.

Mary and her oldest son James Edward McCall moved to Detroit in 1920.

My great grandmother Jennie joined her oldest daughter, my grandmother, Fannie in Detroit in 1922.

Abbie moved to Detroit in 1946 to stay with her niece, my grandmother Fannie.

Beulah moved to Milwaukee, WI about 1947, to live with her oldest son Charles, who never married.

Willie Lee moved to New York to live with her daughter several months before her death in 1958, leaving no more of Eliza’s children or grandchildren in Montgomery.

J- JENNIE Virginia Allen Turner in the 1920s

Robert Pope, Jennie V. Turner, Beulah Pope (back) Alice Turner, Daisy Turner. 1921 trip to Detroit, with a side visit to Windsor, Canada
1920 Census

My grandmother Fannie’s mother Jennie Virginia Allen Turner and her two other daughters were still in Montgomery, Alabama when the census was taken on January 19, 1920. My great grandmother Jennie was living in the same house she had lived in during the 1910 census. She owned it free of mortgage. All three were listed as mu(latto) and spoke English.

Jennie was 52 years old. She had been born in Alabama and the census said her father was born in South Carolina, although other records say Georgia. Her mother was born in Alabama.

She worked on her own account as a seamstress from her home. The oldest daughter, Daisy, was 25 and occupation is listed as none, while younger daughter Alice, was 11 and listed as both attending school and working as a clerk in a grocery store. Actually, Daisy was working as a clerk in her uncle Victor Tulanes store. Alice just attended school.

All of their neighbors on the page were listed as B(lack). Thirteen of them rented their houses while three owned their homes. The school age children in these families all attended school, except for one 16 year old who worked as a laundress with her mother.

Some of the married women worked outside of the home and some did not. The single women worked. They held jobs as cooks, laundresses, elevator operators, house servants. With one seamstress and one clerk.

The men worked as porters, carpenters, one doctors keeper, a butler, laborers, a chauffeur, a fireman, a minister, a driver, and a proprietor of a retail store. Thirteen rented and three owned their homes free and clear.

Read more about The Emancipator here The Emancipator A to Z 2018

When her grandchildren were born in 1920 and in 1921, Jennie Turner and her daughters visited Fannie in Detroit. In 1922 when Fannie and Mershell were waiting for the birth of their third child, my mother Doris, Jennie, Daisy and Alice moved to Detroit. The two households bought a house together and eventually my great grandmother and her younger daughters bought another house further out on the East side of Detroit.

Harold Thomas Allen 1932 – 1946

Harold Thomas Allen was the son of Ransom Allen’s son, John Allen. John was my grandmother Fannie Turner Graham’s first cousin. I did not know about Harold, who died the same year I was born, until the 1940 census was released. I recently found this article via the Momence Facebook Group. I do not have a photograph of Harold. That made me wonder what happened to the family photographs of John and Bobbi Allen when they died without children or siblings.

Momence Progress Reporter July 19, 1946 page 1
Harold Allen’s parents, John and Bobbie (Conyers) Allen. Photo from Ruth Hatcher’s collection.

My Direct Matrilineal Line – Forward and Backward

mtdna direct line
From top to bottom: Eliza Williams Allen, Jennie Allen Turner, Fannie Turner Graham, Doris Graham Cleage, Kristin (me).

children & grands mtdna
My oldest daughter Jilo and her daughters. My daughter Ife and her daughter. My daughter Ayanna. My daughter Tulani and her daughter.


This chart is adapted from the 23andMe website.
This chart is adapted from the 23andMe website.


I received my Mtdna from my mother, who received it from her mother, and on back to the beginning lost in the mists of time.  The Mtdna we all share is L3e3b.  We share this haplo group with the Mende people of Sierra Leone.  You can read more in this post Stolen from Africa – Fearless Females.

Annie Williams is the first woman of this ancestral line that I can name.  She was born about 1820 in Virginia. Unfortunately, I do not have a photograph of her.  Her daughter Eliza Williams Allen (The Eliza I named this blog for.), and all of her children were born in Alabama. Eliza passed her Mtdna to her 13 children, including my great grandmother, Jennie Virginia Allen Turner. Jennie passed it on to my grandmother, Fannie Mae Turner Graham.   Fannie passed it on to my mother, Doris Graham Cleage. My mother Doris passed it on to me and I passed it on to my children. My daughters have passed it to their daughters.  My sons’ daughters received their own mother’s Mtdna.  You can read about all of my past and present, extended family members who received Annie Williams L3e3b Mtdna in this post from 2013 – Seven Generations of L3e3b

Click images to enlarge.

Who Was Eliza?

Who was Eliza?

The Search Begins

A Brief Explanation for Eliza’s Story

Eliza Williams Allen – a photograph

Eliza and the people in her life

Escape – Dock Allen

Finding Eliza Part 1

Finding Eliza Part 2

Finding Eliza Part 3

Eliza’s daughters part 4

She was owned before the war by the late Colonel Edmund Harrison of this county

The 4th Annual Gene Awards

Visit to Oakwood Cemetery

Seven Generations of L3e3b-My MtDna

Stolen From Africa

Cousins, Cousins and More Cousins

I haven’t participated Saturday Night Genealogy Fun lately but I came across this one and it seemed interesting so here is a tally of my 1st cousins, 2nd cousins and several degrees of removed cousins. I am several weeks late but you can find the original challenge at the link above. 

1) Take both sets of your grandparents and figure out how many first cousins you have, and how many first cousins removed (a child or grandchild of a first cousin) you have.

My Paternal Side

The Cleage family about 1930 in front of their house on Scotten. From L to R Henry, Louis, (My grandmother) Pearl, Barbara, Hugh, Gladys, Anna, Albert Jr (My father) and (My grandfather) Albert Sr.
The Cleage family about 1930 in front of their house on Scotten. From L to R Henry, Louis, (My grandmother) Pearl, Barbara, Hugh, Gladys, Anna, Albert Jr (My father) and (My grandfather) Albert Sr.

My father had 6 siblings. His three brothers had no children. His oldest sister had 1 son. His 2nd sister had 4 children and his youngest sister had 2 daughters.  I have 7 first cousins on this side.

My sister Pearl in the blue. Cousin Jan in the red. Behind Jan, Warren. Front right, Dale. Behind Dale, Ernie and behind him me. About 1958.

Front are my other 3 cousins. In zipped coat on left, Maria. Center, Blair. On right, Anna.  Aunts & uncles in background.

  • Warren has 2 daughters. They have a total of 6 children.
  • Jan has 3 daughters and 1 son. They have a total of 4 children.
  • Ernest has 2 children.No grandchildren.
  • Anna has 4 children. No grandchildren.
  • Maria has 2 children. No grandchildren.
  • Dale has 1 child. Unknown number of grandchildren.

I have 14 1st cousins x removed on this side and 10 cousins 2X removed here.



Mershell & Fannie Graham with Mershell Jr, Mary V. & Doris. 1927.

My Maternal Side

My mother had three siblings. Both of her brothers died as children. Her sister had 3 daughters.

  • Dee Dee has 3 children. They have 8 children.
  • Barbara has 2 children. They have 5 children.
  • Marilyn has 1 son. He has 1 son who has 1 son.

I have 3 first cousins on this side, 6 cousins 1X removed and 14 cousins 2X removed.  This makes a grand total for me of  10 first cousins, 22 1st cousins 1X removed and 24 cousins 2 X removed.

My mother Doris & her sister Mary V with their children – Cousins Dee Dee, Barbara & Marilyn with dark hair. Sister Pearl and myself with braids.


2) Extra Credit: Take all four sets of your great-grandparents and figure out how many second cousins you have, and how many second cousins once removed you have.

"At Home Eliza's descendents"
My mother and her sister with 2nd cousins, aunts and uncles.

My maternal grandmother had 2 sisters. Neither of them married or had children.  My maternal grandfather had 3 siblings. Only 1, his sister, had children. She had 4 children.  My mother had 4 first cousins.  That gives me 4 1st cousins 1X removed and 4 2nd cousins.  The family lost contact with my grandfather’s sister and I don’t know how many cousins I have on that side in future generations.


My paternal grandmother Pearl Reed Cleage had 7 siblings.


  • Josephine had 2 children. Unfortunately the family lost contact with those children after 1900.
  • Sarah had 9 children. Between them, they had 14 children.
  • Louise had 2 children.  They had 6 children.
  • Hugh had 4 children. They had 13 children.
  • Minnie had 12 children. They had 30 children.

My father and his brothers with Uncle Hugh Reed Averetts sons.
Two Reed cousins.  My father and his brothers with Uncle Hugh Reed Averett’s sons. Front are Henry and Hugh Cleage. Back are my father Albert Cleage, Hugh Averett, Thomas Averett and Louis Cleage.

My father had 29 1st cousins on his mother’s side. He had 63 1st cousins 1X removed on his mother’s side.  Josie’s Branch disappeared.  That gives me 63 known 2nd cousins on this side.

Cleage Cousins – some of  Albert, Henry and Edwards children.

My paternal grandfather Albert B. Cleage had 4 siblings. Henry had 3 children. Edward had 6 children. Josie had 5 children.  My father had 14 1st cousins on his father’s side.  He had 30 1st cousin 1X removed. That gives me 30 2nd cousins on this side.

So, on my father’s side I have 43 1st cousins 1X removed and 93 2nd cousins.  On my mother’s side I have 4 1st cousins 1X removed and 4 second cousins making a combined total of 47 1st cousins once removed and 97 2nd cousins.


“A Sumptuous Christmas Dinner”

Edward McCall was the husband of my great grandmother’s oldest sister, Mary Allen McCall.  He worked as cook at the City Jail for 30 years, according to the article below. He was also listed as “turnkey” at the jail in several censuses.  Edward’s wife, Mary was a talented seamstress, a skill she learned from her mother, Eliza (who I named this blog after).

They were the parents of 7 children. Six of them survived to adulthood. One of their sons, James Edward McCall was a blind poet and publisher first in Montgomery and later in Detroit.  Their other children were Annabelle McCall Martin, Leon Roscoe McCall, William Gladstone McCall (who died as an infant), Alma Otilla McCall Howard and Jeanette McCall McEwen.

Edward McCall died in Montgomery, Alabama on February 2, 1920 and is buried there in Lincoln Cemetery. For many years this cemetery was horribly neglected and vandalized. Several years ago the Lincoln Cemetery Rehabilitation Authority was formed and has been working to clean it up and put the graves in order. I hear that it is in much better shape.

Only Fifteen Will Enjoy the Hospitality of the City on Christmas Day

ed mccall xmas dinner for prisoners

Twenty-six city prisoners whose sentences originally ranged from thirty days to six months, and who had a balance of time of from one to thirty days yet to serve, were given their liberty Saturday at noon as a Christmas present, upon an order to Chief Taylor of the Police Department from Mayor W. A. Gunter, Jr., this being, the annual custom in vogue for a number of years in Montgomery with reference to the city’s prisoners.

The release of the twenty-six left a remaining number of twelve, which together with three convictions at the Saturday session of the Recorders Court, who were unable to pay their fines, aggregate fifteen who will be given holiday Monday and a sumptuous Christmas dinner, which is being prepared today by Ed McCall, the negro (sic) who for thirty years has served as chef at police headquarters.

The dinner will be served in the regular dining room at headquarters and will consist in a menu of camp stew, bread, cakes, fruits, coffee and other good and tasty articles of substantial foods.