Monday, September 30, 2013

Amanuensis Monday: The Van Every Family in San Marcos - 1883-1885

Amanuensis: A person employed to write what another dictates or to copy what has been written by another.

I continue my project to transcribe family letters, journals, newspaper articles, audiotapes, and other historical artifacts. Not only do the documents contain genealogical information, the words breathe life into kin - some I never met - others I see a time in their life before I knew them.

I began this project back on February 16, 2009.  Since I began, many others have joined in on the meme. I am thrilled that this meme I started has inspired so many to transcribe their family history documents. Why do we transcribe? I provide my three reasons in the linked post. You may find others.

This week I continue with three final unconnected entries I found relating to the Van Every family in the San Marcos Free Press at Chronicling America.

San Marcos Free Press – September 6, 1883

MARRIAGE LICENSES issued since our last report to the 3d inst.:
M.E. Van Every and Maggie Denyer.
C.W. Johnson and L.J. Reaves.
Jesus Medearro and Rosalia Rivera
H.S. Smith and Anna Jackson.

San Marcos Free Press – August 21, 1884

On Saturday while Geo. VanEvery and family were going on a visit to a Mr. Jones, who resides on the Blanco, the wagon wheel ran into a deep rut, which threw Mr. V. and baby out with great force. It was at first thought Mrs. V’s arm was broken, but such was not the case however. The baby escaped unhurt.

San Marcos Free Press - Jan 15, 1885

An escaped lunatic stopped at Mr. Van Every’s the first of the week. Obtaining an inkling of the fact, Marshall Prince telefoned Dr. Denton, and he was returned to the Asylum at Austin.


1) One thing a genealogist quickly learns is that the date of a marriage license isn't the same as the date of a marriage. It is also true, that the date a marriage license is reported in the local newspaper isn't the same as the date of the marriage license. There is no indication when their "last report" was, so we don't know how much time this list covers. From other sources, I know my great grandparents, Margaret Denyer and Melvin Van Every were married on August 29, 1883, nearby in Buda, TX, so this report of their marriage license came after their marriage.

2) I know surname spellings can get easily mangled in newspapers, so I'm slightly curious if L.J. Reaves is related to William Reeves, who married Eliza Caroline Foster, a half-sister of Margaret Denyer's. William and Eliza were married in 1892 in Buda.

3) It's fun to read about car accidents, when everyone escapes unscathed. George was the brother of my great grandfather, Melvin Van Every. There's no indication of which Van Every home the escaped lunatic stopped at. However, while it doesn't say, I suspect the lunatic stopped at the boarding house, most likely owned by my second great grandfather, Samuel Van Every.

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