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Who was Albert Emerson Askew?

Albert’s uncle, Charles Thompson Askew, the subject of my earliest posts on this blog, led me to find Albert and his family. The 1883 Woods’ Baltimore City Directory, which I referred to in an earlier post about him, lists Charles T. Askew, salesman, at the corner of Lafayette and Gilmor, along with Thomas S. Askew, clerk, and Isaac Emerson, apothecary. (There’s that Emerson name again, hmmm.) I also know that Charles and Thomas are brothers. How do I know that? In addition to wills and other evidence, which I won’t go into right now, here they are in the 1870 federal census for Wake County, North Carolina:

1870 NC Wake Askew William copy

I was unable to find Thomas in the 1880 census. However, I did find him in another Baltimore city directory in 1893. The listing reads:

ASKEW & CO (Thos S Askew, Albert W Young) druggists, 501 N. Carrollton

It seems he rose from being a clerk in a drug store to a druggist in his own business. This was the last evidence I could find for Thomas in Baltimore. An 1894 city directory for Wilmington, Delaware, listed “Askew TS, druggist.” At first, I wasn’t certain whether or not this was, in fact, the same person. Some evidence I discovered recently, however, proves it was. Where did Thomas go after that?

Legal documents pertaining to his father’s estate indicate that by 1888 he has a wife named Sadie. Using that as a clue, I found him in Pennsylvania. Here they are in the 1900 federal census for Philadelphia:

1900 PA askew t s copy

It shows that they have been married for 14 years and that he is a drug salesman. They have two sons who were born in Delaware: Albert E., born in May, 1891; and Frank L., born in May, 1897.

I haven’t had any luck finding a birth record for Albert, but I did find one for Frank. He was born in Wilmington, Delaware on May 1, 1897. It also shows his mother’s maiden name is Sadie Young. Could she be related to the Albert W. Young listed as a druggist at Askew & Co. in the 1893 Baltimore directory mentioned above? It seems likely, but I don’t know for certain.

Askew Frank L

Searching Delaware records, I also found that Thomas and Sadie had a daughter who died at age 2. According to the death certificate, her name was Edith Young Askew. She was born in Baltimore, Maryland. She died on June 17, 1890 of meningitis.

For some reason, I haven’t been able to find this family in either the 1910 or 1920 federal census. This meant turning to other sources for clues to their whereabouts. Once again, books available online in digital format provided answers. Just as I found clues about Charles Askew by searching in publications about his occupation as a paper salesman, I turned up valuable information about Thomas in pharmaceutical materials. A publication titled Practical Druggist and Pharmaceutical Review of Reviews, Vol. 21-24, pg. 585, which I found at http://www.books.google.com, in the section dated December, 1908, lists Thomas S. Askew as a registered pharmacist, having passed the New Jersey Board of Pharmacy exam in October.

Now that I knew where (and “when”) to look, it was easy to trace the family in city directories. A city directory for Vineland, New Jersey lists Thomas as a druggist and Albert as resident manager at 712 Grape Street. In 1910, the whole family appears in the Camden city directory. Their address is 835 N. 2nd. The 1915 Camden city directory shows that, by then, the family had moved to 419 State Street. Albert is listed as a drug clerk.

Albert seems to be following in his father’s footsteps in the pharmacy business. Perhaps seeking new opportunities apart from the family business, Albert takes over the management of a pharmacy in Trenton, New Jersey, according to this article published in the Trenton Evening Times on October 6, 1915:

Askew takes over Davidsons drug store copy

On June 5th of 1917, Albert registered for the draft. His registration card lists his age as 26 and date of birth as May 4, 1892. (This differs from the 1900 census, above, by one year.) His home address is 145 State Street, Camden, and he now works as a pharmacist for J. T. Kelly in Hammonton, New Jersey. He is married. He is tall, with blue eyes and black hair. The Camden city directory for 1917 shows that Thomas and Sadie continue to live at 419 State Street.

Exactly one year later, his brother, Frank, registered for the draft, too. His registration card lists his age as 21 and date of birth as May 1, 1897. His home address is 418 N. 2nd, Camden, and he works for the Electro Dental Company of Philadelphia. He is medium height, with light blue eyes and brown hair. Interestingly, he lists his mother as his nearest relative. Also, he reports his middle name as “Young,” although it is shown as “Laplace” on his birth record. Why the change, I wonder?

We know what happens to Albert later in 1918. In fact, the address where his funeral was held is the same as the address that Frank lists as his home address on his draft registration. Albert’s widow, Florence, moved to San Francisco after his death, and appears there in the 1925 city directory.

Something happens to Thomas between 1917 and 1920, but I’m not sure what it is. He may also have died of the Spanish flu, but I have been unable to find a death record for him. The 1920 Camden city directory lists Sadie, but not Thomas. She is living with Frank. One day I may be able to solve this mystery in the New Jersey archives.

Are there any living Askews from this line? Albert and Florence had no children. I have no record of Frank after 1923. So, for now, it seems the story of my great-great-great uncle Thomas and his family has come to an end.

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Posted by on February 15, 2013 in Askew, Uncategorized

 

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Is This Our Bertie?

Here is a photo I found years ago while searching for Askew ancestors. It is from the website The Olden Times.

According to the information on The Olden Times website about the photo, it is mounted on a card with the name Jeffers Studio, 106 N. Charlotte, Balto. printed at the bottom. On the back is written the following:

With much love for Bess from “her friend by the sea,” Bertie C. Askew

Isn’t’ she a lovely young lady?

When I first saw the photo and read the inscription, I didn’t have any reason to think that she had any connection to our Askew family. Now, I have some evidence that she may be my first cousin, three times removed.

A newspaper report shows that Bertie and her mother, Lila, were living in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware, in 1901. Bertie would have been about 18 years old at this time. In the “Personal and Social News” column of the Denton Journal, published on July 20, 1901 it says:

Mrs. Lila Askew and daughter, Miss Bertie Askew, of Rehoboth, visited Mrs. T. Pliny Fisher last week.

Furthermore, Bertie’s husband, Daniel M. Henderson, wrote an article about Rehoboth Beach for The Baltimore Sun, published on July 31, 1921, entitled “This Sentimental Journey to Rehoboth Discloses Many, Many, Fine Things.” He writes:

Conrad, on his wanderings in search of the romance of his youth, went first to Sweetbay, an English watering place, and was disillusioned.  B. and I chose Rehoboth for a quest akin to Conrad’s.

Please don’t ask how many years ago it was when the pair of us first discovered Rehoboth to be a romantic spot. Let it be sufficient that it seemed so to us at a period considerably over a decade ago. Later, moving from Baltimore to New York, the Delaware resort had been eclipsed by New Jersey seashore places, and had almost faded from memory.

He goes on to say:

There is a place on the Delaware coast where one (who has suffered the prolonged tortures of the train ride) may find a wild beach and a friendly people; may walk in odorous pine forests and hear, with the song of the surf as a background, the minstrelsy of thrushes, warblers and hummingbirds; may plunder (with bees and June-bugs) blackberry vines and blueberry bushes; may catch his own fish and fry his own crabs–and be as lonely and content as if he had plunged a thousand miles into the wilderness.

This is what Rehoboth meant to us. To you it may be “the last place on earth.” It depends on whether at one time in your life you met there and formed a life companionship with–a man or a girl!

Isn’t that romantic?

Do you think there is enough evidence to conclude that she is the Bertie in our family tree? VOTE by leaving a comment!

 
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Posted by on June 25, 2012 in Askew, Family Photos, Uncategorized

 

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