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Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Romaine's Revisited

Recently, I shared information with my family about our Romaine ancestors.  Given that it is so limited, it was a short email. 

The following is what I shared and I thought that I might as well post it here too:

I recently made some discoveries in the past months about our “Roman” side of the family. I continue to struggle with how the surname was spelled over the years. It would appear that the family probably spelled the name as Romaine but I have found it as Rohmann in source documents too.

I have obtained a transcribed copy of Francis Joseph McGuire’s and Mary Elizabeth Romaine’s marriage certificate. As you can imagine, this was a pretty great “find” if you will. From there I have located Mary Romaine’s family in census, NYC directories, and a few birth records for Manhattan. I am still digesting a lot of the information. It can be hard to work through at times.

The following are my discoveries of our Romaine’s:

-Mary Elizabeth Romaine was born on November 20, 1878, in New York City, specifically at 240 Delancy Street, in lower Manhattan. It would appear that she was born at home or at least 240 Delancy was where the family lived.

-Her father was Joseph Romaine and her mother was Frances Lakervine.

-Her siblings were Joseph (b. 1872), Rosa, and John (b. 1887).

-The Romaine name is reflected with various spellings in these records including Romaine, Roman, and Rohmann.

-On one census, Joseph and Frances are indicated as being Prussian.

-Frances Lakervine is indicated as Mary’s mother. Her last name is listed in various versions including Luchwurm, Lendervorson, and Lindeaurm. All I can say is that something must have gotten lost in the translation. While Mary was born in NYC and did not have accent, I am betting that her parents did.

-I have a copy of Granddad’s baptismal certificate for St. Louis Catholic Church in Brooklyn from 1908. A John Romaine was his sponsor.

This is all pretty sketchy at this point but in all seriousness, I can find Joseph Romaine in 5 different NYC directories over the span of about 10 years (1880-1890) on The family lived in two different locations including 240 Delancy Street and 126 Hester in Manhattan. I have him as a laborer but later as a carver. When I research the “carver” occupation for the census of the time, it comes up under the category of wood turner, carver, and woodenware makers.

If this rings a bell for anyone, let me know. I am completely lost on the Lakervine (?) name by the way.

Additional information not listed in my email:

I find that health conditions can also be a sign of relationships to others.  I know that this may in fact be a little awkward sounding but there seems to an instance of cancer that dominates in our Romaine Family line.  It may or may not originate as such but there is at least 1 individual, in 3 generations in a direct line who have suffered from and passed away from colon cancer.  They also had some form of stomach cancer it would appear too.  Also, Mary Elizabeth Romaine McGuire, herself, suffered from Parkinson's.  I do not know much about Parkinson's.

I mention health because that too can be telling of a family line.

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