I reunite identified family photos that I find in antique shops and second hand stores with genealogists and family historians. If you see one of your ancestors here and would like to obtain the original, feel free to contact me at familyphotoreunion [ at ] yahoo [ dot ] com. I also accept donations of pre-1927 images to be reunited. I hope you enjoy your visit!
~The Archivist

Friday, April 5, 2013

Girl or Boy? The Child of Nelson and Margarett Ebert, 1892, Cleveland OH

After a bit of a hiatus from the blog, I'm back with another far-from-clear-cut photograph for readers to ponder.  This image features a fairly well-wrapped toddler as its subject.  The photographer was A.D. (Alcynius Donnelly) Burk, who operated a studio at 981 Woodland Avenue in Cleveland, Ohio from approximately 1890 to 1920.  The cabinet card is inscribed on the reverse, in pencil, "daughter of Nelson and Margarett Ebert."

I located a marriage record from 17 September 1888 for a Nelson Ebert and a Margaret Craine who were wed in Cuyahoga County, Ohio1.  On the 12th of April, 1890 the couple were blessed with their first and only child, who, unfortunately, is unnamed on the birth report2


The child is male, which would seem to indicate that this particular child is not the one featured in our photograph.  However, after looking into the Nelson and Margaret Ebert family history a little further, I had to come to the conclusion that either the inscription on the back of the photograph is incorrect as to the gender of the child, or, I have the wrong Nelson and Margaret Ebert.

Here's why:
I could not locate the entire Ebert family in the next available U.S. Federal Census (1900), but I did find the widow, Margaret Ebert, 38, born on the Isle of Man, living with her father Robert Craine and her sister, Jane N. Craine in Cleveland.  The census indicates that Margaret had only one child, and that child was no longer living3.

While I didn't find a death record for Nelson or the child, I did find their interments in Woodland Cemetery in Cleveland.

N.D. Ebert was buried March 6, 1898 in Section 76, Lot 125, Grave 1 in Woodland.  His last residence was listed as 32 Putnam and he died of consumption4.

Three-year-old George F. Ebert, who was buried on the 7th of June 1893, last residence 30 Putnam, was also buried in Section 76, Lot 125.  He succumbed to Scarlet Fever5.

I haven't been able to find any other suitable matches.  My personal hunch is that the child in the photo is George F. Ebert, and the inscription on the back was written years after the photograph was taken.  The inscriber may have thought the child's dress looked like that of a girl's. 

If you are able to provide more information, or may have an alternative line we can follow to identify the toddler in our photograph, please feel free to share your findings.

1 "Ohio, County Marriages, 1789-1994," index and images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/XD29-NBV : accessed 04 Apr 2013), Nelson Ebert and Margaret Craine, 1888.
2 "Ohio, County Births, 1841-2003," index and images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/X6CD-653 : accessed 04 Apr 2013), Nelson D. Ebert in entry for Ebert, 1890.
3 "United States Census, 1900," index and images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/MMC1-891 : accessed 04 Apr 2013), Margaret Ebert in entry for Robert Craine, 1900.
4 http://www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~ohcdrt/clecems/images/wo_05_145.jpg
5 http://www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~ohcdrt/clecems/images/wo_04_144.jpg


  1. Welcome back!!!!!


    Seems timely in a strange way to feature an Ebert. (RIP Roger Ebert).

  2. It was probably miss marked..most people would guess that the photo is of a girl..when it could very well be a boy. In my experience limited as it is..boys often had bangs straight as a stick..girls bangs were curled or pulled to the side..for what it is worth..about 2 cents:)

  3. Thanks Iggy, glad to be back! I know what you mean. I was literally writing the post when I heard about Roger Ebert's passing. Wonder if there is some kind of connection with his family.

  4. Thanks, Connie! Your 2 cents is worth quite a bit more than that and very much appreciated, too. You always bring extensive knowledge with dating and analyzing old photos to the conversation.