Wednesday, June 22, 2016

John Carrick Cooper (1886-1969) Part 2

London and Paris
Jack arrived in the United States on 8 Aug 1906. He was met by his father, Alexander Sisson Cooper who came to the U.S. the year before. Jack found a job working as a book keeper.

He became involved with a local Baptist church. At this church he met Sophie Ramona Piña, a public school teacher. He asked the pastor her name. She caught his heart. They dated for over a decade. Sophie, also known as Honey, would not marry Jack until he became a U.S. citizen. She was smart, as at that time in U.S. history, women born here in the U.S. would lose their U.S. citizenship if they married an alien (one who was not a U. S. citizen.) Jack worked hard to be sure he had enough money to support her and a family.

Sophie Ramona Piña "Honey"
On 14 Nov 1913, Jack was honored to be a U.S. Citizen. Jack & Honey were married 27 Dec 1916. They eloped to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. They honeymooned in Washington D.C. Jack and Honey settled in Brooklyn.

"United States World War I Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918," database with images, FamilySearch ( : 12 December 2014), John Carrick Cooper, 1917-1918; citing New York City no 61, New York, United States, NARA microfilm publication M1509 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.); FHL microfilm 1,754,500.

With the starting of WWI, Jack registered dutifully as an U. S. Citizen. He was denied to go to war with his deafness in his left ear. He found other ways to serve including working for the E. W. Bliss Co., as an accountant, in Brooklyn. Bliss obtained defense contracts for the manufacture of torpedoes, used by the US Navy, and munitions during the Spanish–American War, World War I and World War II.

Their first child, John Austin Cooper was born on 9 Jul 1919. 

John Austin Cooper with mother, Sophie "Honey" Cooper 1919 Brooklyn, New York
In the spring of 1920, Jack is sent on a business trip to London and Paris with E. W. Bliss Co. for several months. He fills out a form for his U. S. Passport. The information on this form verifies his birth date, location, immigration and U. S. citizenship. 

"United States Passport Applications, 1795-1925," database with images, FamilySearch ( : 13 October 2015), John Carrick Cooper, 1920; citing Passport Application, New York, United States, source certificate #6210, Passport Applications, January 2, 1906 - March 31, 1925, 1132, NARA microfilm publications M1490 and M1372 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.); FHL microfilm 1,638,094.

On the back page, it is interesting to see as written under “Distinguishing marks”: Dog Bite on Left Calf of Leg. What happened here? I asked family members to find out what they knew about this. No one knows.

The Coopers had three pets. These included Tubby, a German Shepherd; Queenie, a Boston Terrier; and Ginger, a Brown and White Fox Terrier. Did one of these bite Pop? My aunt says no way!

Jack sailed on 24 Apr 1920 leaving New York aboard the Kaiserin Auguste Victoria and arriving in Liverpool, England, on 4 May. Yet, the UK Incoming Passenger Lists, lists Jack as arriving in Queenstown (one of the arrival ports). Queenstown is now known as Cobh, a tourist seaport on the south coast of County Cork.   It lists his mother’s address in Dublin as destination. In the letter below Jack mentions his visit in Dublin. Also see The Letter that Started it All written by his niece, Sheelah Corcoran in 1917, living at this same address.

“UK Incoming Passenger Lists, 1878-1960.” database with images, Ancestry ( accessed 22 June 2016)
Jack writes letters home to his dear Honey, as four months is such a long time to be away from his dear wife and baby. I am fortunate to possess two of these letters dated May 7 and May 26.   A cousin has another letter dated June 1, 1920, which I made a copy of and transcribed. 

Here is the first letter dated May 7, 1920.

Dear Sweetheart: 
  I arrived in London on Thursday morning after a two day stay in Dublin, which I cut short on account of things being in such a poor way there. Poor Bessie [Jack’s aunt] is such a total wreck and is quite useless. She is now confined to her bed. Cannot even  use her hands. My God, it was a pitiful sight for me to witness, for I always pictured her jolly and lively.
  However, I did receive a jolly time by another gentleman I called upon, a Mr. Walsh. He did everything in his power to show how glad he was to see me.
  My arrival in Queenstown was eventful. Our ship was the first boat to call there in six years, causing no small amount of excitement among the natives, who turned out in great numbers and stood around me and stared hard. Of course, when I got through blushing, I started to “kid” them. Took the train to Cork where I put up at the Imperial Hotel. Went to bed at 10 p.m. and got up early and took the train for Dublin. 
  Whilst in Queenstown I met a Dr. Murphy, and He accompanied me to Cork. But I will keep the story for you when I get home. He was most interesting. Had been to the M. D.
  Well Mommy, London I will certainly say, is a beautiful city, although I have not seen a food looking fine since I left home. The number of busses here is stupifying. I am staying at a hotel in a very fashionable neighborhood. It’s brochure I enclose.
  Have a private room and bath. I do not expect to be in London more than 2 weeks, so any mail you send will have to be forwarded on to Paris. I expect to have my work finished by that time, so have to move.
  Have had some very amusing experiences which I will relate to you when I get home. 
  How is my sweetheart and Bud. I do wish you had have come. But then you would have not had any sugar in your coffee. Mrs. Loughry brought some with her but as she is staying at the Waldorf Hotel, we have not been able to share it. 
  Loughry continues to act like a human being, so have no complaints to make in that respect.
  Sent home a bunch of cards from Dublin and am doing the same from here.


Keep. (in Honey’s handwriting)

It is interesting that he does not mentioning seeing his mother, Laura Jane Boyd Cooper, who died a year later on 28 Nov 1921. I am sure he did see her along with his sister, Elizabeth Cooper Corcoran, with nieces and nephew. He mentions poor Aunt Bessie, who is one of his father's younger sisters. Aunt Bessie, came to the U. S. nine months later to visit her nieces and nephews to present them with family heirlooms, one in my possession. More to follow in Aunt Bessie's story. 

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