|Ray Jerrems, Our Genealogist, Historian||
Annie and the Three Marks, This is your Life!
The reason for this article.
This is one of a series of articles about people who form part of the Jerrems family's history. It is an outline of the story of Mark Healy's grandmother Annie ("Ann") Letitia Jerrems. It is only intended to be an outline suitable for inclusion in the Newsletter, I have a lot more information for readers who may wish to follow it up. For the sake of simplicity I will refer to her in this article as "Ann"."
My apologies to Jerrems Journal subscriber Mark Healy for not running this article earlier; he gave me information for the article a few years back.
Ann's previous appearance in the Journal
Readers will remember that there was an article about Ann's schooling at the Ogontz School for Young Ladies in the September 2008 edition of the Journal. Also there were photos of her son and grandson (both named Mark Healy) in the December 2006 edition.
Ann's Early Life
Ann was the sixth child (and third daughter) of William George Jerrems l and his wife Mary (nee Mary Nicholl). Readers may remember that William George was born in Gainsborough in England and migrated with his family to Australia in 1859. William later married Mary Nicholl and the couple had four children in Australia, two in England and one (Donald, the grandfather of our Editor) in Chicago. Significantly, William and Mary's family formed the base for most of the families in the US who now have the surname Jerrems.
Born in England in 1882, according to her Death Certificate, Ann (as she became known) was named after two of her mother's sisters.
Ann's family moved to Chicago from England in late 1882 or in 1883. Her father became a very successful businessman, having taken over much of his father-in- law's tailoring business of "Nicoll the Tailor", a chain of tailoring stores spread throughout most of the US.
Ann accompanied her family on trips to Europe on a number of occasions.
Three of Ann's four brothers received a University education (the fourth, William, chose to leave school at the age of 15). Ann's latter-days education was at the Ogontz School, with her final year at the School in 1903.
Ann marries Marquette Healy
Ann married Marquette ("Mark") Ambrose Healy (born in 1884 in Illinois) in 1907 at the comparatively late age (for those days) of 25. There were obviously things she wanted to do like travelling and mixing with friends before she settled down. A handsome couple, in due course Ann and Mark had 3 children, Mary Patricia Healy (born in 1908), Marquette Healy Jr (born in 1909) and Vincent Jerrems Healy (born in 1918). They lived until 1928 in Chicago.
Incidentally, Ann's husband Marquette was probably named after the famous French Jesuit explorer Father Jacques Marquette. He was the first person to follow the Mississippi River from its source most of the way down towards its mouth, in the mid 1600s.
I mention this particularly because the picturesque name "Marquette" has been carried down for 2 more generations after appearing "out of the blue" (it had not been used in earlier Jerrems or Healy generations). All 3 men were known as "Mark".
Ann's father-in-law was Patrick Joseph Healy (needless to say he was born in Ireland) who was co- founder of the company of Lyon & Healy, famous for making musical instruments and reputedly the largest instrument maker in the world at the time. I have written a separate article about this company, which has a fascinating history.
Mark and Ann lived in comfortable circumstances in Chicago (or perhaps one might say, as comfortably as one could live in Chicago, with its notorious winters). In summer they spent time at a house on Lake Geneva in Wisconsin to the north and in winter they escaped to a house in Pasadena in sunny California on the west coast.
To be fair to Chicago, it was at that stage the second largest city (second only to New York) in the US and had a thriving business community. The business district was modern, having been rebuilt after the massive Great Chicago Fire of 1871.
Mark worked in the family business, which was flourishing.
As would be expected, Mark and Ann were financially well off in these years. In the 1910 Census in Chicago they are shown to have a cook, a nanny (no doubt to keep their infant son Marquette in line) and a chauffeur. In the 1920 Census, when they were holidaying in January in Pasadena, California, they had an entourage of 4 servants. This was a record number of servants for the Jerrems family. All of Ann's brothers and sisters had one or two servants, but only Ann had four.
The number of servants they took to Pasadena also indicates that the family stayed there for an extended winter holiday, not surprising in view of the time taken to travel there.
The train journey from Chicago to Pasadena would have taken almost 3 days if they travelled non-stop (for the benefit of Australian readers, the distance from Chicago to Pasadena is similar to the distance from Sydney to Perth).
The Pasadena house they rented was close to a house owned by Ann's older sisters Helen and Mae, indicating that Ann kept in contact with all of the family. Three of her four brothers (Alexander Nicholl, Arthur Wallace and Donald Edwin) lived in Chicago, where she would have been able to see them at any time for the rest of the year.
Mark took over the presidency of Lyon & Healy in 1921 but sold the company in 1928, one year before the start of the Great Depression. This exit from a vulnerable area of the business world (would you buy a musical instrument if you could barely feed your family?) would have reduced the financial effect of the Depression on the family. By way of contrast, Ann's four brothers were not so fortunate. They were badly hit by the Great Depression and their tailoring empire, which they had taken over from their father in the early 1900s, collapsed.
The Family leaves Chicago.
Mark and Ann were able to use part of the proceeds of the sale of the company to leave Chicago and buy a ranch in Arizona, where they lived until the mid 1930s. They then moved to California, where they lived for the rest of their lives. Ann died in 1970 at the considerable age of 88, outliving her husband and 6 siblings by a large margin.
To briefly round off the story, sadly two of Mark and Ann's 3 children (Patricia and Mark) died in the early 1940s. This left Vincent as sole survivor of the three children, and he married Patricia, coincidentally bearing the same Christian name as his sister (the repetition of names can be confusing, can't it). Finally, to cap off the repetitions, Vincent (who died in 1982) and Patricia had 2 sons, Vincent Jerrems Healy ("Vince") born in 1944 and Marquette Ambrose Healy ("Mark") born in 1948.
It sounds like an Army tank, doesn't it, with models Mark 1, Mark 2 and Mark 3.
Fortunately we have some photographs of the family. In one charming photograph we have (from left to right) Ann, Mark 1, a dashing Vincent in his Air Force uniform, and his wife-to-be Patricia. The picture was taken in about 1942 at the family's Balboa beach house in Newport Beach, California.
In another photo (taken in the early 1930s) we have a debonair Mark 2 standing in front of his sleek Auburn roadster. Finally, in an interesting contrast, we have a photo taken several years ago showing Mark 3 standing in front of his fire truck.
So there you have it. An outline of Ann's life. A happy life on the whole, tinged with the sadness of losing two of her three children in their adult years.
I managed to locate her grandchildren Mark and Vince, who filled in some of the gaps for me and gave me the photos.
I was particularly interested in locating Mark and Vince because of the dearth of information on Ann's generation. The only other person of her generation known by living people is her older brother William George ll.
Remember the long-misplaced letter submitted by Charles W. "Chick" Keller, Overland Park, KS in September's edition?
It started off:
"We moved recently and last night I was cleaning out a file cabinet and came accross a file I don't think I had ever seen before. I think we picked the file up when my mother Sydney Ann Jerrems died.
The letter was written by William G Jerrems (my grandfather) on Sept 22, 1943 and was written to Betty Wright Rizzo, daughter of Marjorie Jerrems Wright Teasdale. "
We promised a revisit with comments by Ray.
|Ray Jerrems, Mystery Puzzle Solver||
His Secret: Search and Research
The letter published in the September edition of the Jerrems Journal was a real "find" and clears up some outstanding mysteries.
The writer of the letter was William George Jerrems ll, the first son of William George Jerrems l and Mary Jerrems referred to in the previous article. In other words he was, coincidentally, Annie's oldest brother.
The letter has a number of interesting references (quoted below), to which I have added my comments:
1. "You once asked if the Jerrems family had a coat of arms. It has. I had a copy of it, but it became lost in my frequent moves." Comment: This is the oldest reference we have to a coat of arms. I have heard it referred to elsewhere but nobody has found it.
2. "The Jerrems family were French Huguenots". Comment: This statement is particularly interesting because I had heard the same story, probably handed down from my great grandfather Charles. Assuming that William George ll heard it from his father (Charles's brother) then this account (corroborating the account I had heard) goes back to the mid 1800s. This makes it highly likely that it is correct.
3. "In 1811 he was important enough to issue his own silver coins". Comment: I had previously researched these coins and have prepared an article about them.
4. "His mother was Elizabeth Jephson, daughter of a county squire and Magistrate". Comment: Elizabeth's maiden name was in fact Jepson. Her father was a surgeon (confirmed by records at the time), but he could also have been at the same time a Justice of the Peace who was called upon from time to time to sit in a local court.
5. "Your grandfather Jerrems shipped as a cabin boy on a sailing vessel from Hull, England in 1856 and arrived in Australia nine months later." Comment: This probably explains (as I have suspected) that two of the older boys (William and Edwin) could have come out to Melbourne several years before their mother. The trip would not have taken 9 months, but the mystery is who looked after them when they came out? Probably the father, a difficult task without his wife.
6. "He married Mary Nicoll on Christmas day 1869 (note maybe 1867?)". Comment: Their first son William George ll was born in 1869, so 1867 would have been the correct year of their marriage.
7. "We came to the US in 1875, lived in Brooklyn and Philadelphia and went to England in 1877". Comment: This shows that the family went directly from Australia to the US (something I suspected), then to England, after which they returned to the US in late 1882 after Annie was born. They would have travelled by ship from Australia to San Francisco and then taken a train to the east coast (the line from San Francisco was opened in 1869).
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