Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Little Lost Angel

I am too impatient, and just can’t wait for the appropriate back story to reveal itself before posting this picture. Isn’t she a little cherub? Who is this lost angel?

Edna Tully McCaughey provided plenty of explanation on the back of the photograph. I’ve done the best I could to decipher the note and search for the names, but I am finding no leads. So, here’s the splat of it. I’m hoping someone online will find this darling a genealogical home.

Edna McCaughey’s handwriting had a few quirks, like occasionally curling the last flourish of her “r” inward instead of the customary outward curve. She must have written some notes in a hurry, for she tended to leave out a letter in some of the longer words (see “daughter” in the scan). I have my guesses about most of this message, which I’ll note below, but since I’ve made no progress following these genealogical directions, I’m copying and posting the original text as written.

As far as I can tell, the note looks like:

Vivian Lester Bromley
Daughter of
Aunt Marie [,] Grandma Ryan
half sister
Two daughters of former
Kitty Coffee
Margie Hansen
--ths half sister of Grandma Ryan

Bromley? Coffee? Hansen? Any takers for these surnames?

Who is “Aunt Marie”? I have not been able to find any record, so far, showing that “Grandma Ryan”—who would be Mary Ann Sullivan—had any half-sisters.

Any idea who this young angel is, whose tentative pose has forever been captured by A. Morse, photographer, of Irving Park, Chicago?



  1. Ah, another nightmare... step-siblings and 2nd or 3d marriages.

    Taking the name on face value, Vivian L. Bromley (nee something*) was born 9 May 1892 and died May 1978 in Chicago, Illinois. She was married to John F Bromley, and had a son John F. (jr.) and daughter Margaret (what else?)


    *Her maiden name is an open question to me - but she appears to be a half sister of Grandma Ryan.

  2. Perhaps this is her:


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