52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks #19 – Ira Strait

Relationship: 2nd Great-grandfather
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Ira Strait and his wife Sarah were a roly-poly couple later in life. I have a photo of him and his wife Sarah Matilda (Kimble) Strait taken somewhere in Sussex County which proves my point and it makes me smile whenever I see it!

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Sarah Matilda (Kimble) and Ira Strait.

Ira was born 30 May 1852[1] in Sussex, Sussex County, New Jersey, to parents William Strait and Elizabeth Card.[2] He is the oldest of seven children born from 1852 to 1875 to William and Elizabeth.

Ira’s siblings were:

  • Mary Ida (born 12 March 1855)[3]
  • Coursen (born about 1859)[4]
  • Warren N. (born about 1860)[5]
  • Martha (born about 1863)[6]
  • George E. (born 20 January 1869)[7]
  • Mallie B. (born October 1875)[8]

Ira Strait was 22 years old when he and Sarah Matilda Kimble were united in marriage 26 September 1874 in Newton, Sussex County, New Jersey, at the Regular Baptist church by Simon Siegried, Jr.[9]

At 28, Ira was working in the mines.[10] Mining was a very intensive industry in Sussex County in the 1700 and 1800s). There were a number of viable mines in Franklin and Ogdensburg excavating iron and zinc. http://sterlinghillminingmuseum.org is a good resource for further reading on this topic.

I would imagine mining was a tough occupation and by 1900 Ira had switched to farming[11], another active industry in rural Sussex County. In March of 1908, he purchased “the S. O. Price farm, near North Church. The farm contains thirty acres and Mr. Strait paid $100 an acre for it. He will make strawberry culture a specialty.”[12]

Ira Strait 034

Ira Strait: Gentleman farmer

Along with farming, Ira was busy having a family. As was the norm of the time, his family wasn’t small. There were 10 children in all! Daughter Eda W. was born about 1875.[13] A son, Ora Simpson was born 26 January 1879.[14] The next son, Orval D., came along on 14 February 1883.[15] Son Dennis was born in 1884 but only lived to be 6 months old.[16] Son Asa Havens was born on 09 May 1885.[17] Another son, Adam R. was born February of 1890.[18] After five sons, another daughter was finally born. Mary Ida comes along April of 1892.[19] It’s back to boys when Ward Beecher was born on 16 June 1897[20] and James follows around 1900.[21] Another daughter Bertha was born but I haven’t found a birth date for her yet. [There is a discrepancy with this list of children. Please see my posting on Sarah’s life for further discussion. http://wp.me/p4WHi0-4U]

Another little tidbit about Ira came from a cousin Dennis DeGroat who said: “Ira Wilson Strait served as a ‘Lay Preacher’ for the Methodist Church for 38 years.  He preached in small gatherings in and around Hardyston, New Jersey.”

Ira lived to the ripe old age of 78. He died the day after Christmas in 1930. He was interred in the North Hardyston Cemetery.[22]

STRAIT Ira W. and Sarah M.


[1] North Hardyston Cemetery (Rt. 94, Hamburg, New Jersey), Ira W. and Sarah M. Strait marker; photos taken by Jodi Lynn Strait, July 2006.
[2] 1860 U. S. census, Passaic County, New Jersey, population schedule, West Milford, p. 9 (penned), dwelling 57, family 54, William Strait; digital image, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 17 November 2011); citing NARA microfilm publication M653, roll 706.
[3] James Wright, forwarded personal e-mail, to Jodi Strait-Shutts, e-mail, 16 June 2013, “Vernon births.”
[4] 1860 U. S. census, Passaic County, New Jersey, population schedule, West Milford, p. 9 (penned), dwelling 57, family 54, William Strait; digital image, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 17 November 2011); citing NARA microfilm publication M653, roll 706.
[5] 1870 U. S. census, Sussex County, New Jersey, population schedule, Hardyston Township, p. 37 (penned), dwelling 289, family 292, William Strait; digital image, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 17 November 2011); citing NARA microfilm publication M593, roll 889.
[6] Ibid.
[7] Canisteer Cemetery (Canisteer Rd, Sussex County, New Jersey), George E. Strait grave marker; From Route 23, follow Canisteer Road 2.7 miles where the cemetery is on the left side of the road. Photo taken by Jodi Lynn Strait, 27 December 2011.
[8] 1900 U. S. census, Sussex County, New Jersey, population schedule, Deckertown, ED 164, p. 11B (penned), dwelling 247, family 267, Brice Bedell; digital image, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 06 November 2005); citing NARA microfilm publication T623, roll 994.
[9] Sussex County, New Jersey, Sussex County Clerk’s Office Marriage Book B: 359, Ira W. Strait and Sarah Kimble, 1874: Hall of Records, Newton.
[10] 1880 U. S. census, Sussex County, New Jersey, population schedule, Hardyston, ED 178, p. 50 (penned), dwelling 411, family 476, Ira Strait; digital image, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 01 October 2011); citing NARA microfilm publication T9, roll 798.
[11] 1900 U. S. census, Sussex County, New Jersey, population schedule, Lafayette Township, ED 169, p. 1B (penned), dwelling 23, family 25, Ira W. Strait; digital image, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 01 October 2011); citing NARA microfilm publication T623, roll 995.
[12] “Ira Strait, purchases the S.O. Price farm” land transfer announcement, Sussex Register, 18 March 1908; Bound newspaper stacks, Sussex County Historical Society, Newton, New Jersey.
[13] 1880 U. S. census, Sussex County, New Jersey, population schedule, Hardyston, ED 178, p. 50 (penned), dwelling 411, family 476, Ira Strait; digital image, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 01 October 2011); citing NARA microfilm publication T9, roll 798.
[14] Ora Simpson’s membership booklet for The Carpenters and Joiners Union, dated 20 October 1917. Privately held.
[15] North Hardyston Cemetery (Rt. 94, Hamburg, New Jersey), Ira W. and Sarah M. Strait marker; photos taken by Jodi Lynn Strait, July 2006.
[16] Jean Pitts, contributor, “Stockholm Methodist Episcopal Church Cemetery,” text data file,  Usgwarchives.org  (http://files.usgwarchives.org/nj/sussex/ cemeteries/stock.txt: accessed 25 November 2011), listing no. 163 for Dennis Strait; citing records of Joseph P. Crayon.
[17] Social Security Administration, “Social Security Death Index (SSDI),” Database, Rootsweb.com (http://ssdi.rootsweb.ancestry.com), entry for Asa Strait, 1964, SS no. 156-24-0616.
[18] 1910 U. S. census, Sussex County, New Jersey, population schedule, Hardyston, ED 174, p. 80A (penned), dwelling 353, family 381, Ira Straight; digital image, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 01 October 2011); citing NARA microfilm publication T624, roll 909.
[19] Ibid.
[20] Social Security Administration, “Social Security Death Index (SSDI),” Database, Rootsweb.com (http://ssdi.rootsweb.ancestry.com), entry for Ward Strait, 1964, SS no. 145-30-8294.
[21] 1910 U. S. census, Sussex County, New Jersey, population schedule, Hardyston, ED 174, p. 80A (penned), dwelling 353, family 381, Ira Straight; digital image, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 01 October 2011); citing NARA microfilm publication T624, roll 909.
[22] North Hardyston Cemetery (Rt. 94, Hamburg, New Jersey), Ira W. and Sarah M. Strait marker.

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