My Great-Grandfather — Part Two

The 2nd Part of the story of my Great-Grandfather, Robert Rutledge.

I grew up thinking that my grandfather, Gordon Rutledge, grew up with just a brother who lived back East. But one day, while visiting his daughter, my Auntie Verna, I found out that not only did he have a stepmother but he had a half sister as well.

As I was sitting having tea with my Aunt, she said “You know I am named after my Dad’s sister” I was surprised and mentioned that I didn’t know the Robert & Annie had 3 children. She told me not Annie but his 2nd wife. Now that was a surprise because after asking about family, no one had ever mentioned to me about a 2nd wife and child.

So, a new wife and child — interesting and it got more interesting and sad as I researched them.

I searched for a child born to a Robert Rutledge and named Verna. I found her but it was a death certificate, not a birth record. Verna Eileen Hope Rutledge was born on April 11, 1911 and died on May 12, 1912 of whooping cough. How very sad that she just lived 13 months.

But I believe this death caused problems for both parents as it seemed that after that, while it looks like they never divorced, they did not live together. My Dad told me that he had heard comments that it had to do with depression and alcohol – whose he never said but I can understand this. I have a couple of letters written by Robert in the 40’s which he mentions “Mother” visiting him. By then, his Mother had been dead for a number of years, so I believe he is talking about his wife, Georgina.

I have been unable to find any records, other than their marriage records as to what happened to Georgina. I am hoping to find a copy of Roberts’ death certificate that might list him as a widow or married, which would give a better date range.

One thing that I have that is special to me is that while I don’t have much on my Great-Aunt Verna Eileen Hope and don’t know where she is buried, my Auntie Verna left me her coffin plaque as she knew that I would cherish it and I do. I had it put in a special frame and it is on a wall of honor in my apartment.


So did the death of a child separate Robert and Georgina? When did she leave? Did Grandpa grow up with a step-mother or what type of home did he grow up in?

I guess that there is really no way to answer these questions, but at least Verna Eileen is remembered and not forgotten. While I cannot flower her grave, I do say a little prayer on her birthday and Angel Day.

Part Three will be about Robert’s invention and the rip off of his rights to it.

My Great Grandfather – Part One

I thought that I would write about family members, starting with my Great-Grandfather Robert Rutledge. Click on his name to see his page, but there is more to him than the page will allow.

Robert was the son of immigrant parents, Robt Rutledge and Ellen Elliott, both who came to Canada from Ulster, Northern Ireland. They arrived at different times but met and fell in love in Canada and started this wonderful Canadian Rutledge branch. Robert was the 4th of 9 children.

As you can see by the picture, he was a very handsome man:


In the Ontario Archives, there is the following:

Robert RUTLEDGE, 25, clerk, Canada, Ottawa, s/o Robert RUTLEDGE & Ellen ELLIOTT, married Annie DICKS, 19, Canada, Ottawa, d/o Walter DICKS & Caroline BEACH, witn: W. H. RUTLEDGE of Toronto & Mary JOHNSTON of Ottawa, 10 Oct 1900 at Ottawa

I wonder what type of clerk he was; how did they meet; what did they wear?? I believe that W. H Rutledge was his younger brother, William Henry but who is Mary Johnson? Was she a friend of the bride or girlfriend of William?

Together, they settle down and had 2 sons – Walter Russell and Gordon Elliott (my grandfather). There is not much about the family so I believe that they had a happy life in Ottawa. Sadly, on Jan 12, 1907, Annie died of tuberculosis. She is buried in the Dicks Family Plot in Beechwood Cemetery, Ottawa, Ontario.

Together the 3 Rutledge men carried on until 1910 when Robert married Georgina Gifford, and it seems that life was never normal after that.

To be continued . . . a baby, a death, an invention made and stolen, a marriage that didn’t seem to work but lasted til death . . .

Family Stories . . .

I wish that I could get at least each family member to write me a letter — no email, a real, hand written, sent in the mail letter. Sounds strange but no.

I think that the best thing that anyone can have is a handwritten memory of family. It doesn’t have to include me or my direct family, just something that you remember about the past, or even the present would be wonderful.

I wish I had sat down with my Grandparents and Aunts and Uncle to get information about life.

At Christmas, while visiting with my parents, my Dad talked about the Christmas parties that my Uncle Bob use to have. There was always so many people and the table, as my Dad told me, went from one end of the house to the other. I know that I have at least one of these parties on a VHS tape and the table does look that long.

Occasionally, someone in my family mentions something from the past and I don’t remember it at all. Whether it is old age or the stroke I had, the memories are gone.

So, a wish – that I could get letters from family telling me stories of our lives, our childhood, the present, stories of cousins I never met.

I would love to add them to a book and just call it Memories of a Family . .

For the Year 2013 . .

sorry this is late but been majorly sick.

But anyways for the 2013 Year


  • keep adding family to the tree
  • update information and people
  • add more photos to my tree of people – I love photos
  • keep adding documents for further confirm the information that I have – sources, sources, sources
  • link more of the burials I have on findagrave to my website
  • For findagrave:

  • fill in more information in the memorials that I have
  • add photos to the memorials that I have added
  • I am still trying to think about the Photo Requests, as I have become quite disenchanted with the requesters
  • Stop reading the forums as they just piss me off more with how people talk to each other
  • For Family:

  • visit family more often than I do
  • Get in touch with my neices more often, go for tea or coffee with them, get to know them as the young ladies they are
  • Talk more with cousins on facebook, just not comment on their pages – we are family
  • Try and visit family on the Island
  • Start saving to go visit family overseas (Sweden and Finland) – stop with the maybes but really do it.
  • So that is my hopefules for 2013, what are yours??

    Are genealogist really hoarders in


    I have to wonder if a Genealogist has a hoarder gene in them. I mean I keep every scrap of paper that I find that has something about family – even if the family is a distant, distant, distant, distant, distant, distant family member. I love having all of it.

    My sister told me how she mentioned to her oldest daughter that I had more information in binders then was on my website. I realized I do have a lot of stuff – about 20 CDs with information & pictures; photo albums; binders for each side (Maternal and Paternal); Military records; miscellaneous records that include Complaints filed by my Great-Grandfather for the theft of his patent.

    I can and do spend days searching for 1 little article, 1 little photo or piece of paper to see if I can connect the dots or in most cases, people.

    But I also hoard things – I have most of my dolls (Barbies), Chatty Cathy dolls, comics, etc. What do these have to do with my genealogy passion. Nothing, but I love all things old. I even have clothes that were mine, my Auntie Ingrids and of course, all of Nancie’s baby things.

    I know that I have to one day go through and label all the photos that I have from Nancie’s youth and get them out of the boxes they are in, because one day, she may want them.

    So, as asked previously — are genealogist just a defined type of hoarder?