April 2009 Jerrems Family Newsletter Edition 49
All the Jerrems News that is Fit to Remember
Dear Donald,
We include two images with story lines this month in the Remember Us series. Enjoy.

Next month we celebrate our 50th edition. We always welcome your submissions to the Remember Us series.

Daughters of Samuel Jerrams and Sarah Pritchard
Ray Lloyd   Remember Us
From: "Ray Lloyd" Subject: Jerrams Photo
Date: Tuesday, November 25, 2008 2:29:19 PM


I attach a photo of my Grandmother Elizabeth and her sister Alice, Daughters of Samuel Jerrams and Sarah Pritchard, (they were born at Kemeys Inferior, Near Newport, Monmmouthsire, South Wales UK,) circa 1950, taken by a street photographer in Cardiff, South Wales.

Its not the quality of the ones in this last issue, but the only one of the two of them, I do have a fair photo of Alice which I will attach on a second mail, Gran Fry suffered with Cataracts and her sight was poor, Aunt Alice never married she was a Nannie to a Surgeons family and was a lovely lady.

Best Regards.

Ray Lloyd

Note: Ray Lloyd is descended from Samuel Jerrams of the Wappenham family, whose father Thomas was the brother of William (1778- 1859). William was the father of James Jerrems b1812 (the father of the Civil War veterans) and Joseph Jerrems b1814 (Sandra's great great grandfather).

Three Cousins
Brad Jnr, Nathan, and Jess   Ray and Di Jerrems, Proud Grandparents
Nathan, in the middle, was born on December 16th, and lives in Sydney with his parents, Roger and Caroline.

Samantha (on the left) and Jessica: Anita McDonnell is our mother; Brad is our dad. We now live in Sydney.
Remember Us: Uncle Arthur and Aunty Mame
Ray Jerrems, Mystery Solver   On a 1926 Visit from Chicago to Sydney
The smartly dressed man at the left hand end of the top row of people in the top left photo (taken in Sydney in 1926), and the woman below him, were Uncle Arthur and Aunty Mame (Uncle Arthur is also top left in the right hand photo).

I can hear you asking "But who were Uncle Arthur and Aunty Mame, and why were these people from Chicago in the Sydney photos?

Therein lays a story, which involves the Sydney and United States members of the Jerrems family. Bear with me and I will tell you.

Uncle Arthur

But who was Uncle Arthur? Seasoned readers of the Journal could skip the next two paragraphs because they have heard it all before, but I always explain the historical context of my main characters afresh so that new readers can understand where the characters fit into the "Jerrems" family picture.

Uncle Arthur was born in Sydney in 1872, his parents being William George Jerrems l and Mary Nicholl Jerrems. You have heard a lot in the Jerrems Journal about Arthur's father, who had been in the family that migrated to Melbourne from Gainsborough in the 1850s, and you have heard about Arthur's siblings including William George ll, Helen, Alexander, Donald and Annie. But Arthur has been keeping his head down. Until now, that is.

Briefly, after leaving Australia the family migrated to the United States, spent time in England, and then returned to the United States, finally settling in Chicago in the mid 1880s.

Arthur's parents William and Mary became wealthy through William's tailoring business. They were actively involved in social affairs in Chicago and entertained frequently, so Arthur would have had an early introduction to Chicago society. For instance there are 1892 Chicago newspaper references to Arthur's parents and Arthur holding receptions at their home. After he finished school Arthur studied at Harvard and joined the very lucrative family tailoring business. He seems to have been overshadowed somewhat by two of his more famous brothers, William George Jerrems Jr (who was a great coin collector) and Alexander Nicholl Jerrems (who was a well known gridiron player). These brothers show up a lot in newspapers but Arthur only gets occasional mentions. Mainly, Arthur shows up as being in the "Chicago South social set" in the 1890s before his marriage to Mary Morse in 1896. Like his father and his brothers William and Alexander he belonged to a number of social and sporting clubs, which businessmen tended to do in those days.

Aunty Mame Aunty Mame's actual name was Mary, but in those days "Mame" was a popular alternative (I cannot describe it as a diminutive because it has the same number of letters). Mary was born in Iowa in 1877. Later Mary, her parents (who included her father John) and two sisters Emma and Elizabeth (Bessie) probably moved to Minneapolis (in Minnesota) and then (definitely) to Omaha (in Nebraska), where her father worked for the Union Pacific Railway. Finally the family moved to Chicago, where John worked for the Missouri Pacific Railway. It was in Chicago that Mary would have met Arthur.

My Aunty Vi mentioned that Mary was a very good piano player, which brings me to a snippet in the Omaha World Herald in 1902 saying that Mary had composed a song in Chicago and had had it published.

Why call them "Uncle" and "Aunty"? My Aunty Vi, who died several years ago in her mid 90's, referred to them in this way, so the practice has remained. This has the advantage that when I tell my wife about my "jottings" (as we call them) she knows exactly who I mean. After all in the family annals there are so many women named "Mary", and four named Arthur, that I need a shorthand method of referring to them.

I heard about them some years ago from Aunty Vi, who remembered vividly their visit to Sydney in 1926 (she was about 17 at the time). This was the first time I had heard about Jerrems relatives living in America. Arthur showed her a photo of the impressive New York store, which always stuck in her mind. The visitors were welcomed warmly and made a big impression. They asked if Aunty Vi's older sister Essie would like to stay with them for a while in Chicago.

Now, more about their lives.

Arthur and Mame Marry

Arthur and Mary were married on a Wednesday in October 1896, Arthur being about 24 and Mary about 19. The wedding ceremony took place at the house of Mary's parents at 7-30 pm, with a minister from the Episcopal Church officiating. Alexander (Arthur's brother) was best man, and a reception for 250 people followed after the wedding ceremony. Quite a gathering! A mandolin band provided the music, probably somewhat avant guarde for those days, long before the advent of Harry Belafonte.

Arthur travelled quite a lot, sometimes with Mary. I have picked up references to him travelling to Europe in 1910, 1913 and 1916. He probably also travelled with his parents when he was younger (for instance the family went to Europe for a four month trip in 1891). They had one child Arthur Wallace, who was born in about 1900 and died in late 1947. Readers will remember that his first wife (nee Leonore Grace Smith) painted the painting of a rooster with a backdrop of a coloured shawl , the shawl having later been handed down to her grand daughter Leonore (as described in the Journal article of July 2008). This means that Arthur and Mame were the younger Leonore's great grandparents.

The 1910 Census refers to Arthur and Mame having a servant, unusual these days but very common in those days.

We then have a large gap in my research until 1926, when Arthur and Mame turned up in Sydney, and were photographed.

The photographs of Arthur and Mame

The photographs were probably taken on the stairs at the front of my grandparents' house in Greenwich (the house is still there but the house was extended later so I cannot be completely sure about the location of the photo). The three photos were provided by my second cousin Laurel, who has been mentioned on occasions in the Jerrems Journal (remember the article about Laurel's adventures in New Guinea with her husband Laurie, in the May 2007 edition?).

Arthur is the genial man at the top left of the left hand picture, looking very sartorial in his "Jerrems Tailors" waistcoat and suit. Aunty Mame, equally smartly dressed, is below him.

The photo has a caption referring to their visit in 1926.

We know from shipping records that Arthur and Mary returned to the US in the "Sierra", which arrived in San Francisco on April 23, 1926. So the photo was probably taken at least a month earlier, although it is somewhat of a puzzle as to why they are so warmly dressed. The answer probably is that they were all dressed in their universal "Sunday Best" clothes, which ignored the practicalities of which season it was. It is very likely that Arthur and Mary visited the Melbourne branch of the family also.

The other people in the photos

A short history lesson is needed for readers to understand how the other people in the top left photo fit into the family tree. Arthur's father had eight siblings, including my great grandfather Charles (the bearded gent in the middle of the photo). Charles trained as a printer and bookbinder in Melbourne and a short time later moved to Sydney, where he married Susannah. Their children included Charles Jr (Laurel's grandfather), my grandfather Alf, and Richmond.

In due course Charles Jr married Doris and they had three children, Charles (Laurel's father), Elsie and Doris. In the meantime Alf married Esther and they had four children, Vi and Essie (referred to earlier), Alf and my father George.

Turning to the top left photo, which has a mixture of families, we have in the back row from left to right, Arthur, Laurel's aunts Elsie and Doris, Laurel's grandmother Doris, my grandmother Esther (slightly higher) with Laurel's mother Jessie below her.In the next row we have bearded great grandfather Charles and my grandfather Alf, and in the bottom row we have Mame, then my great uncle Richmond, my father George and my uncle Alf (Doug's father and Ari's grandfather).

The top right photo merely contains the men and boys in the top left photo.

The people in the bottom photo, taken at a different time but in a similar period, are (top row) my grandmother Esther, Auntie Essie, Aunty Vi (the "flapper" in the striped dress), middle row my grandfather Alf, and bottom row my Uncle Alf and my father George.

Arthur and Mame Afterwards

Sadly Arthur and Mame died comparatively young (Arthur in 1931 in his early 60s and Mary in 1932 in her late fifties). At the time of his death (he took ill after a game of golf and died two weeks later) Arthur was the Chairman of the Board of Directors of Jerrems Inc, tailors. Mary died the following year of "heart disease".

Wedding Bell News
Donald Jerrems, Publisher  
There will be a gathering of Jerrems folks in Florida in May.

Tom and Vanessa (daughter of Susan Jerrems Begat and Didier Begat) will be married. Tom and Vanessa are both graduates of the University of Florida. A grand time is expected by all!

If you would like to see the wedding website, click on the link below: Tom and Vanssa Seitz


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