Tombstone Tuesday: Timothy and Odile (Millette) Adam

Timothy and Odile (Millette) Adam experienced nearly forty years of marriage together that were anything but ordinary.

Timothy, baptized in St. Pie, Quebec on 8 August 1846, the son of Timothée Adam and Marguerite Chicoine, crossed into America with his family as a teenager.1 They settled near the textile mills of Indian Orchard, Hampden County, Massachusetts, which is where Timothy married at the age of twenty-one on 22 September 1867 to Odile Millette.2 Odile had been born in the French Canadian community of Rouse’s Point, Clinton County, New York on 11 July 1847, the daughter of Maurice Millet and Isabelle Quemeneur dit Laflamme.3 She, too, had relocated to Massachusetts as a teenager, where she also found work in the mills.

The couple was said to have had ten children together, eight of whom have been identified: Timothy Maurice, Alexander Amadée Edmond (known as Edward), Joseph Frederick (known as Alfred), Marie Julie Malvina, Albina Lena, Henry Joseph, Martin Theodore, and Permelia Marie.4 Only five of these children are known to have survived to adulthood; at least one succumbed to scarlet fever as a toddler.5

In 1883, the family made the decision to move west.6 I have to wonder if this move was spurred by the deaths of at least two of their own young children circa 1880, as well as by the deaths of Timothy’s younger brother and sister who died within a week of each other in February of 1883: one of pneumonia at twenty and the other of tuberculosis at twenty-four.7 In fact, tuberculosis had caused the death of Timothy’s mother just five years before.8 Perhaps the idea of fresh air and the countryside appealed to the couple as they must have feared for the health of their children.

Timothy and Odile may first have joined French Canadian relations in southeastern South Dakota, where a son was born to them in the summer of 1885.9 In December of the following year, Timothy claimed a homestead a short distance away near Moville, Woodbury County, Iowa.10 The family would remain here for a number of years; by 1900, they had relocated to a dairy farm closer to Sioux City.11

The coming years were unexpectedly tumultuous for Timothy and Odile. First, in 1900, their twenty-nine-year-old son Edward, who had been out of touch for nearly a decade, returned home and began harassing his parents and younger siblings. Timothy went to court in order to obtain a restraining order against him.12 Then, over the next several years, Timothy and Odile seem to have suffered marital discord. Timothy was not recorded in the 1903 Sioux City Directory; he appeared again in the same household as his wife the following year.13 In 1905 he was again absent, and it was at this time that Odile implored the enumerator of the 1905 Iowa State Census to bring her any word of her two eldest sons, Edward and Fred, who had traveled west and had not been heard from in several years.14 It was also in 1905 that Odile recorded her will, leaving her real estate to her three youngest children: Henry, Theodore, and Permelia. No mention was made of her absent sons – or her husband.15

IMG_3451

Grave of Odile Milliette Adam (1847-1906) and Timothy Adam (1840-1919), St. Joseph Cemetery, Elk Point, Union County, South Dakota; 2014, privately held by Melanie Frick, 2015. Note: Timothy’s date of birth on his gravestone is incorrect. He was born in 1846.

In 1906, the final year of Odile’s life, she operated a boarding house at 508 Perry in Sioux City.16 Notably, Timothy resided not at home, but at the Washington House Hotel.17 It does seem possible, however, that the couple reconciled whatever differences they may have had by the time of fifty-nine-year-old Odile’s death from hepatitis on 16 December 1906 in Elk Point, Union County, South Dakota.18 Notably, when the 1907 Sioux City Directory was printed at some point in late 1906, likely shortly before her death, both Odile and Timothy were named as residents of 508 Perry.19

Timothy, a carpenter again as he had been in his younger years, remained in the house with his children for only a short time before resettling in nearby Jefferson, Union County, South Dakota. He remained here for the next decade; as of 1910, he operated a billiard hall in this small, largely French Canadian community.20

By 1917, Timothy, now seventy, had returned to Sioux City where he lived with his married daughter.21 He died there on 22 February 1919 at the age of seventy-two, his cause of death recorded as senility.22 Timothy Adam was buried beside his wife, Odile Millette, at St. Joseph Cemetery in Elk Point, Union County, South Dakota, his name squeezed as though an afterthought at the base of her gravestone.

Copyright © 2015 Melanie Frick. All Rights Reserved.


SOURCES
1 “Quebec, Vital and Church Records (Drouin Collection), 1621-1967,” digital images, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 12 September 2015), Romain Timothé Adam, 08 August 1846, St-Pie, Quebec; citing Drouin Collection, Institut Généalogique Drouin, Montreal, Quebec.
2 “Massachusetts, Marriages, 1841-1915,” digital image, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org : accessed 30 Aug 2013), Timothy Adams and Julia Mellett, 22 September 1867, Springfield. Odile was baptized Julie and used the name Julie or Julia for the first few decades of her life.
3 “Early US French Catholic Church Records (Drouin Collection), 1695-1954,” digital images, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 12 September 2015), Julie Millet, 11 July 1847;citing Drouin Collection, Institut Généalogique Drouin, Montreal, Quebec.

4 1900 U.S. census, Woodbury County, Iowa, population schedule, Sioux City, enumeration district (ED) 170, sheet 15-B, p. 77 (stamped), dwelling 291, family 333, Timothy Adam; digital image, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 13 April 2014), citing National Archives microfilm publication T623, roll 467.
5 1880 U.S. census, Hampden County, Massachusetts, population schedule, Springfield, enumeration district (ED) 321, p. 23 (handwritten), dwelling 127, family 204, Timothy Adam; digital image, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 21 May 2014), citing National Archives microfilm publication T9, roll 536., and “U.S. Federal Census Mortality Schedules, 1850-1885,” digital images, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 21 May 2014), entry for Abbina [Albina] Adams, March 1880, Springfield; citing “Nonpopulation Census Schedules for Massachusetts, 1850-1880,” National Archives microfilm publication T1204, roll 38.
6 “U.S, City Directories, 1821-1989,” database, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 20 January 2014); citing “Springfield, Massachusetts, City Directory, 1882,” 82, and “U.S, City Directories, 1821-1989,” database, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 20 January 2014); citing “Springfield, Massachusetts, City Directory, 1883.” Timothy Adam was not recorded in the 1883 directory suggesting that his move took place within the previous year.
7 
“Massachusetts Deaths and Burials, 1795-1910,” database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org : accessed 12 September 2015), Elzear Adams, 08 Feb 1883, Holyoke, and “Massachusetts Deaths, 1841-1915,” database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org : accessed 12 September 2015), Liza (Adam) Turien, 15 Feb 1883, Springfield.
8 “Massachusetts, Springfield Vital Records, 1638-1887,” digital image, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org : accessed 20 January 2014), Marguerite Adam, 12 September 1878, Springfield.
9 1900 U.S. census, Woodbury County, Iowa, population schedule, Sioux City, enumeration district (ED) 170, sheet 15-B, p. 77 (stamped), dwelling 291, family 333, Timothy Adam; digital image, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 13 April 2014), citing National Archives microfilm publication T623, roll 467.
10 Timothy Adam (Woodbury County) homestead file, final certificate no. 2560, Fort Des Moines, Iowa, Land Office; Land Entry Papers, 1800-1908; Records of the Bureau of Land Management, Record Group 49; National Archives, Washington, D.C.
12 1900 U.S. census, Woodbury County, Iowa, population schedule, Sioux City, enumeration district (ED) 170, sheet 15-B, p. 77 (stamped), dwelling 291, family 333, Timothy Adam; digital image, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 13 April 2014), citing National Archives microfilm publication T623, roll 467.
12 “Wants Protection from Son,” Sioux City [Iowa] Journal, 29 June 1900, p. 5; digital image, GenealogyBank (http://www.genealogybank.com : accessed 08 October 2014), citing NewsBank and/or the American Antiquarian Society, 2004.
13 “U.S, City Directories, 1821-1989,” database, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 20 January 2014); citing “Sioux City, Iowa, City Directory, 1903,” 92, and “U.S, City Directories, 1821-1989,” database, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 20 January 2014); citing “Sioux City, Iowa, City Directory, 1904,” 92.
14 “Iowa, State Census, 1905,” Sioux City, Woodbury County, Iowa, O.T. Adam [Mrs. T. Adam]; digital images, FamilySearch (http://www.familysearch.org : accessed 08 October 2014).
15 “Iowa, Wills and Probate Records, 1758-1997,” database, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 12 September 2015), Odile M. Adam, 1 September 1905, Sioux City; citing Woodbury County District Court.
16 “U.S, City Directories, 1821-1989,” database, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 12 September 2015); citing “Sioux City, Iowa, City Directory, 1906,” 93.
17 “U.S, City Directories, 1821-1989,” database, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 12 September 2015); citing “Sioux City, Iowa, City Directory, 1907,” 92.
18 “South Dakota Death Index, 1905-1955,” database, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 08 October 2014), entry for Odile M. Adams, 6 December 1906, Union County; citing South Dakota Department of Health.
19 “U.S, City Directories, 1821-1989,” database, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 12 September 2015); citing “Sioux City, Iowa, City Directory, 1907,” 93.
20 1910 U.S. census, Union County, South Dakota, population schedule, Jefferson, enumeration district (ED) 423, sheet 1B, p. 3701 (penned), dwelling 24, family 24, Timothy Adam; digital image, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 12 September 2015), citing National Archives microfilm publication T624, roll 1489.
21 “U.S, City Directories, 1821-1989,” database, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 12 September 2015); citing “Sioux City, Iowa, City Directory, 1917,” 70.
22 “Deaths,” Moville [Iowa] Mail, 27 February 1919; digital image, GenealogyBank (http://www.genealogybank.com : accessed 08 October 2014), citing NewsBank and/or the American Antiquarian Society, 2004.

 

 

Advertisements

2 thoughts on “Tombstone Tuesday: Timothy and Odile (Millette) Adam

  1. Pingback: Suiting Up at the Turn of the Century | Homestead Genealogical Research

  2. Pingback: The Iowa Asylum | Homestead Genealogical Research

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s