Talk:Ernest Herbert Richardson
I'm looking at the 1920 census record and I'm thinking the census taker messes up in how he/she recorded the information. While Nella Jane and Nancy are listed under the mother-in-law with the surname Vogel -- I don't think the girls actually have the surname Vogel. It doesn't make sense that Vogel would have two daughters named Nella (Nella wife of Ernest and then daughter Nella Jane), but most telling is when you look at the birth location of the parents.
Nella, wife of Ernest, has born in Kansas with her parents listed as born in Kansas(father) and Virginia(mother) (image not totally clear)
The daughters have their parents as born in: England (father) and Kansas (mother) which would match with Ernest and Nella being their parents.
The mother-in-law is listed as born in Virginia which matches with Nella Richardson's information.
So I think the census taker messed up. The girls are Richardsons and not Vogels --- so the little sister angle doesn't apply here.
- Actually, one could look at the evidence the other way as well. If we assume the two girls to be purely adopted, the name Nella still doesn't make sense, because generally adopted children come with their own names already given. (Though perhaps renaming was more common back then, when the parent giving up the child had less ability to follow up.) Anyhow, Nella does not seem so common as to make it likely to have come with an adopted child, but if that adopted child was already near kin, then the likelihood increases. I have heard of parents giving multiple children the same first name. This was especially common among Quakers, I believe, and when an older child had died, but the fact that Nella is alive does not automatically mean that the child is not her sister. The girl seems to have gone by Jane, which is unsurprising when the name is shared with someone else in the household, but even more likely if that someone is a sibling. However, there is yet another possibility. These could be nieces (perhaps born out of wedlock or orphaned) who had been living with their grandmother.
- Since the children are living with Nella and Ernest as adopted children, it is unsurprising that their "parent" data would be consistent with having Nella and Ernest as parents. The census taker, I imagine, would take the liberty of filling in that data himself, or even if not, it is not inaccurate, since they are the legal parents. One aspect of this that I found telling was that in the 1910 census, Nella is listed as having been born in Missouri. If this was a mistake, as it seems to have been, I could well imagine her mother correcting it during the next census. My supposition would be then, that she considered herself to be from Missouri. This is much like I consider myself to be from Indio. It is only since I have taken up Genealogy that I have been able to accurately recollect my birthplace. It is also possible that her husband provided the birthplace (which would lead me to a similar conclusion), or even that the census taker made an assumption (which would not support my conclusion). Anyhow, if the family was from Missouri, then that is where the children would come from, which would make their data consistent with my sibling hypothesis. (Even if not a useful discriminator.)
- I'm glad you got a closer look at the census. You didn't happen to note where Katherine's parents were from, did you?
- I think it is far to early to assume the census taker made a mistake. My hypothesis certainly has its issues, but I don't think it is as weak as all that, and there are certainly other explanations which are consistent with their having last names of Vogel. Since, as of yet, this is the only record we have of their last names, I think it is worth keeping the possibility in play.
- Seanmcox 03:49, 12 July 2011 (UTC)