Thursday, February 1, 2018

Jane “Jennie” Mauvillian Cooper Oswald (1864-1943) Part 1

Jane or "Jennie" Mauvillian Cooper is the ninth child, third daughter, of Austin COOPER and Elizabeth GIBSON. She was born on 9 Oct 1864, in Edgeworthstown, Longford, Ireland (stated in her obituary). I have yet to find evidence of this location in Ireland birth records.  

Her father, Austin Cooper, worked for the Ireland railway and one can see in his story that he moved around the British Isles with several positions. Austin died in 1883 working for the railway in Bellananagh, Cavan, Ireland. His widow, Elizabeth, left for America the following year. 

My next question is when did Jane come to the United States? I do find a Jane Cooper, age 29, on a ship list for the Eturia arriving in New York on 21 Apr 1890. There is a 3 year age difference listed, but is she being honest? From London, England? Is this the right one?

"New York Passenger Lists, 1820-1957," digital image, ( accessed 15 Oct 2017), Image 469 of 707, Line 849, Jane Cooper, Line 3 entry; citing List Number 506 of National Archives Microfilm Publication M237, Roll 546; Ship Eturia out of Liverpool,  W.A.C. Hains master, arrived New York on 21 April 1890.
My next reference to the whereabouts of Jennie is in Texas. She is referred to by her sister, Bessie Cooper, in a letter to their lawyer cousin, Mark Bloxham Cooper, dated 21 Apr 1891, after the death of their half-brother, Austin Irwin Cooper. Bessie gives Jinnie’s address as “806 San Antonia Street, Austin, Texas. U.S.A.” See post about Austin Irwin Cooper (1849-1891).

I find Jennie seven months later on 19 Nov 1891 marrying John William "Billy" Oswald of Cascade County, Montana. How did they meet? How did she end up in Montana from Texas? 

Montana, County Marriages, 1865-1950,”  database with images, FamilySearch ( 21 September 2017), John W Oswald and Jane M Cooper, 19 Nov 1891; citing Marriage, Helena, Lewis and Clarke, Montana, county courthouses, Montana; FHL microfilm 1,906,338 (image 566 of 927): accessed 2 January 2018.
There is also a marriage announcement in the local paper, The Helena Independent. 22 Nov 1891. They were married in St. Peter's Episcopal Church in Helena, the capital city of Montana. Henry A. Oswald, one of the witnesses, is the older brother of the groom.

Cooper, Jennie, and Oswald, J. W. Marriage announcement. The Helena Independent. 22 Nov.1891. p. 3, col. 3. Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers. Library of Congress. Accessed 16 Oct. 2017.
The birth of their only son, Austin Henry Oswald (named after both grandfathers) was on 27 August 1892 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. It states on Austin Henry Oswald's birth registration that his father, J. W. Oswald's, occupation is Ranch[keeper]. Did Billy and Jennie go to visit his parents during Jennie's pregnancy? Or did Billy send his pregnant wife home for family care to help with the birth of their son?

"Minnesota Births and Christenings, 1840-1980," database, FamilySearch( 4 December 2014), Austin Henry Oswald, 27 Aug 1892; citing Minneapolis, Hennepin, Minnesota, reference; FHL microfilm 1,498,826. Accessed 3 Jan 2018.

I have a copy of a detailed letter (with notes), written by Austin Henry Oswald to the author, Don L. Thrapp, in 1960, who was asking questions about Austin's father and maternal grandfather, Al Sieber. Thrapp was in the process of writing his book Al Sieber: Chief of Scouts which was published in 1964.

Austin mentioned that his father was a close friend of Charles M. Russell, the "Western Artist," who worked for his father on his sheep ranch. Austin writes,

"my father's sheep ranch was in Little Bend, 30 miles from Cascade. Chas. Russell was his Buck Herder. Till he got married [1896 to Nancy Cooper - no relation], used to sell all of his paintings to the Silver Dollars Saloon in Great Falls for a few bucks. His widow lives in Carmel. Fame in wealth came to him in later life." 1

Another eye-opener was this news article of 1898 that mentions Mr. and Mrs. J. W. Oswald arriving in Great Falls, Montana. With the couple is their son and “Mrs. Cooper,” Jennie’s mother!

“Hotel Arrivals,” Anaconda Standard, (Anaconda, Montana), Friday, 22 April 1898, page 9, column 2, Chronicling America : accessed 11 Oct 2015). 
A week later, the same newspaper announces Billy's plan to purchase a ranch in California to raise fruit.

“Great Falls Notes,” Anaconda Standard, (Anaconda, Montana), Friday, 29 April 1898, page 9, column 3, Chronicling America: accessed 16 Oct 2017).
Apparently, this seemed to not work out as I find the Oswald family in Fairbanks, Sully, South Dakota as a stockman in the 1900 US Census. J. W. “Billy” and Jane “Jennie” have a 7-year-old son, Austin Henry Oswald. Jane’s arrival to the US is unknown. Living with them, is Jane’s mother, Elizabeth Cooper. This was my first discovery of Elizabeth coming to America. See her story.

1900 United States Census, South Dakota, Sully County, population schedule, Fairbanks, enumeration district (ED) 817, Sheet 7-A, Family #84, John W. Oswald household; digital image, ( : accessed 7 May 2017); citing National Archives Microfilm Publication T263, Roll 1554.
What made them move from Montana to South Dakota? Another newspaper article shares this part of J.W. Oswald’s adventure dated 9 August 1904. 

"Macaroni Wheat - Sully County Man Raises Big Crop of that Cereal."  Aberdeen Daily News (Aberdeen South Dakota), Tuesday, August 9, 1904. page 6, column 1, : accessed 11 Oct. 2015.

1 Dan L. Thrapp Collection, Heley Memorial Library and History Center. Midland, Texas.

No comments:

Post a Comment