This post begins with some of my great-grandmother Anna (Karthaeuser) Repsher’s family records.
According to this handwritten sheet, Daniel (I will discuss the fact that I have Daniel as his name where this has James a bit later) was the second husband of Emmaline whose first husband was John Heckman.
Emmaline and John had four children with Heckman as a surname:
Emmaline then married Daniel and they had four children with Bonser as a surname:
- Caroline (my 2nd great-grandmother: wp.me/p4WHi0-4Y)
Don’t be fooled by the handwriting (shown above), James Bonser’s middle name was not Bachelor, that just means he was never married!
I started my search for James by working backwards from my 2nd great-grandmother, Caroline. During previous research, I had found her in the 1860 U.S. Census as a 2-year-old with parents Daniel (37) and Emmeline (35). Caroline’s siblings were Joseph (7) and Sally (5). The family is residing in Tunkhannock, Monroe County, Pennsylvania.
Emmline’s children, John and Lydia, by her husband John are not listed. Perhaps her son John was old enough to be employed on someone else’s farm by this time or perhaps both John and Lydia were deceased before 1860.
There is a disconnect with her father’s name of James really being Daniel. However, all the other family members fit nicely with the handwritten sheet pictured above so I believe the name James was an error. Also, this particular handwritten sheet is not in the same format as the other family group sheets.
Searching for the family in the 1870 census finds them living in Jackson, Monroe County, Pennsylvania. In the household are Daniel (45) and Emmaline (40) along with children Caroline(12), Anne (9), Malinda (7), Lewis (4) and 1/2 sister Sally who is listed with the surname of Heckman (15). That means Caroline, Anna and Lewis match the above information about the second marriage but Malinda does not. Also, James is not listed.
The 1880 census finds the family living back in Tunkhannock. Daniel (54) and wife Emmaline (50) are listed with two sons, Lewis (14) and James (9). No other children are present.
As a recap, we now have the following children/stepchildren listed in census information associated with Daniel and Emmaline:
Comparing the censuses with the handwritten list of eight yields the following discrepancies:
- John Heckman was on the list but never found in a census
- Lydia Heckman was on the list but never found in a census
- Malinda Bonser was not on the list but found in a census
Since there are no population schedules (lost in a fire) for the 1890 census, Daniel is not found in the next census in 1900 but Emmaline (70) was found as a widowed mother-in-law. She is living with her daughter, Ann, in the Newhart household with plenty of children surrounding them. This would mean the Daniel died between 1880 and 1900.
Interestingly, Emmaline has listed on the 1900 census that she has had eleven children, six of whom are still living in 1900. Since I have seven (Joseph, Sally, Caroline, Anna, Malinda, Lewis and James) identified from the census information and two (John and Lydia) more from the handwritten sheet, there are still two more children to discover.
Writing this particular post shows me that I have some significant research tasks to perform relating to Daniel. My research on him is limited to census information and some family records. There are other sources I need to explore to fill in some of the blanks for him, all along the hatched, matched, and dispatched line!
- Find a birth record
- Find Daniel’s parents
- Find a marriage certificate for Daniel and Emmaline
- Find an obituary
- Find Daniel and Emmaline’s grave marker
- Find a death certificate
 1860 U. S. census, Monroe County, Pennsylvania, population schedule, Tunkhannock Township, p. 147 (penned), dwelling 887, family 942, Daniel Bonser; digital image, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 25 June 2006); citing NARA microfilm publication M653, roll 1142.
 1870 U. S. census, Monroe County, Pennsylvania, population schedule, Jackson, p. 8 (penned), dwelling 49, family 55, Daniel Bonser; digital image, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 21 June 2015); citing NARA microfilm publication M593, roll 1376.
 1880 U. S. census, Monroe County, Pennsylvania, population schedule, Tunkhannock, ED 229, p. 421 (stamped), dwelling 39, family 45, Daniel Bonser; digital image, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 03 October 2015); citing NARA microfilm publication T9, roll 1157.
 1900 U. S. census, Monroe County, Pennsylvania, population schedule, Lower Towamensing, ED 11, p. 14B (penned), dwelling 279, family 300, Jacob Newhart; digital image, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 03 October 2015); citing NARA microfilm publication T623, roll 1390.