|Ray Jerrems, Family Sleuth||
Recently our Editor received the following email from Allis Jerrems:
My daughter and I moved from Oklahoma to Arizona this last May and I may have missed some of your letters. I have always wanted to tell you and everyone what a great job you are doing with the Jerrems Journal.
Don't you think it would be a good idea to make it into a book? I have a friend in Japan who wrote of her automobile trips through America and had it made into a book for her family and friends. Unfortunately it is in Japanese, but I adore the pictures.
Can you forward any I missed?
Thoughts about a book. The idea of publishing the Journals as a book is interesting, and would be well worth considering when our research has slowed down. There is a precedent in the family, Mark Healy (whose grandmother was Ann Jerrems) has lent me a book written about his great grandfather Patrick Joseph Healy.
Who is Allis? Some readers who read early issues of the Jerrems Journal will remember her being mentioned on several occasions.
Allis's parents were Russian and her maiden name was Kamber. She is the widow of Raymond Lee Jerrems (b1921 d1987), who was in turn the son of Raymond W. Jerrems (b1891 d1950) and Eileen Merryman. Raymond W. Jerrems' parents came from New York, but that is all I know about them. They were not from the line originating from William George Jerrems, which accounts for all the other Jerrems families in the US.
Allis is in her eighties and loves needlework (she has entered her needlework in exhibitions). She has two children, Cynthia ("Cindy") and David.
How did I originally locate Allis?
This is an interesting story.
In 2003 I did a telephone search for all people named Jerrems in the US, using the 1994 telephone directory on the Mormon's database (the latest directory they had at that time). I gradually worked my way through it, finding that most people had moved. Eventually I had one name left, an Allis Jerrems at Grove, Oklahoma. But when I rang the number a recorded message told me that the number had been discontinued. Not another one who had moved!
Not long afterwards I found a reference to Allis, via Google, on a Craft Show website. It showed her as living at Grove. Hmm, I thought to myself, she must still live there, but where to from here?
I looked up Grove on Google, looking for possible avenues. Masses of information available. Situated on the Grand Lake o' the Cherokees (formed by Pensacola Dam), 76 miles from Tulsa, population in the City of 5000, lots of facilities, but no craft clubs listed. I toyed with the idea of ringing some Grove craft shops but finally chickened out, thinking that they would be unwilling to tell an Australian male anything. Perhaps the postal authorities would tell me where she lived, so that I could at least write to her? I chickened out again because there was every chance that privacy laws would not allow them to tell me.
I finally decided to email Jerry and Sue in Las Vegas to seek their help. Within a few weeks I received the following reply from Jerry:
I have spent some time on the telephone to Grove OK and finally had success in getting in touch with Allis. I remembered you said that she was involved with needlepoint exhibiting or judging. After several calls to some very helpful people in Grove who recognised her name, I was referred to the county library in Grove. The chief librarian said she knew Allis and would get my message to her.
About 30 minutes after our conversation, I received a call from Allis, who said she was totally surprised to hear from another Jerrems but was thrilled to be contacted. I told her about the research you had been doing and how Sue and I had renewed family contacts made possible by your efforts. We had a very pleasant talk and she passed along her phone number and address.
Now that is what I call the "direct approach"!
Allis and I have exchanged emails occasionally. I found one of her emails to be particularly rewarding. It concluded with "Its nice to know that we are family". Genealogical research can be frustrating at times, but this sentiment has carried me through my research on the Jerrems families in the US.
I have appointed Jerry as my Chief Detective in Heaven, after seeing his initiative in contacting Allis.
Editor's Note: We forwarded the back issues to Allis.
|Ray and Allis||
The Rest of the Story from Allis to Ray
So good to hear from you! My move to Tucson was quite sudden.
After Christmas my place in Grove Oklahoma had a terrible ice storm and was without power for 13 days. The indoor temperature got down to 49 degrees! I told my daughter, Cindy, how terrible it was and she promptly put her condos in Washington DC and Tucson and my house in Grove on the market for sale. Her husband loved the climate in Tucson and had wanted to retire there. They found a beautiful independent living place there for me and bought a great house for themselves.
With all the chaos going on my son David was left behind in Grove but we hope he will join us here next year when everything is a little more settled
How kind of you to enquire about my needlework. Yes, I have been wanting to cut back on my needlework but I am knitting every day. I have a brother who loves my socks. If you send me the length of your foot, standing up on a sheet of paper, from heel to toe, I would love to send you a pair.
Thank you for finding me.
|Ray Jerrems, Quizologist||
What's the Historical Story behind the Card
Here is a test for readers interested in European history.
This trade card was probably printed in about 1871 for use by the San Francisco store of Nicoll the Tailor (Alexander Nicholl, otherwise known as Nicoll the Tailor, was the great great grandfather of many US readers).
Who is bowling the bomb, and why?
A clue. Was this the time of the Franco-Prussian War?
Image above. Answer next month.
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