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Remembering Mary Ellen Fralick Gordon Hope

January 11, 2018

Henry and Marth (Scott) Fralick > Mary Ellen Fralick m. Michael Hope > Monroe Hope m. Ethel (Woodington) Hope > Billie Hope > Carmala

Today is the birthday of my great grandmother, Mary Ellen Fralick. Much of her biography was shared earlier with some history of her parents, but today is dedicated to Mary Ellen.

Mary Ellen Fralick

Mary Ellen (Fralick) Hope

Mary Ellen was born in Cassville, Grant County, Wisconsin on 11 Jan 1852. Her family owned several acres of farmland and made a comfortable 19th-century living. Tragedy struck the family early in Mary Ellen’s life when she was just shy of her second birthday. Her older brother, three-year old Jeremiah, died on 27 Dec 1853. Just three weeks later, on Mary Ellen’s second birthday, her older brother Jerome also died. He would have celebrated his sixth birthday two weeks later on 25 Jan 1854.

When Mary Ellen was 16 years old, she married a Civil War veteran on the Fourth of July, 1868. ThomasLeander Gordon, born 1 Oct 1843, had served in the Iowa Infantry. The young couple had one daughter, Allene Edith. Leander suffered disability from his time in the war and died at the young age of 29 (14 Feb. 1873).

The following year, on 30 Sept 1874, Mary Ellen married Michael William Hope. Mary Ellen and Michael had four children: Olive Meach, Florence C., Agnes J., and a son, Monroe (my grandfather).

As an aside: Michael had been previously married to Sarah Abigail Parker and they had two children, John Giles Hope and Angeline E. Hope. I have not found a death certificate for Sarah nor a record of a divorce, but the census information suggests Sarah may have died at a young age. In 1870, Michael, Sarah, John, and Angeline lived together in Little Grant. In 1880, Michael lived with John and Angeline and his second wife, Mary Ellen, and their biological daughter, Olive, in Little Grant. That Michael had the children with him suggests Sarah’s death rather than a divorce. In the rare case of a divorce, the children usually went with the mother in the 19th century.

But, back to Mary Ellen. She married Michael and took in his two children, John and Angeline. The family continued to live in Little Grant. Michael died first on 8 May 1919 and was buried in the Providence Cemetery in neighboring Bloomington, Grant County, WI. Mary Ellen lived another 16 years after Michael’s death, mostly in Grant County. There was a stretch of time, including during the 1930 US Census, when Mary Ellen lived with her oldest daughter, Olive, in Kenosha, WI, Mary Ellen died 22 Apr 1935 back in Bloomington, Grant County, WI and was laid to rest next to Michael in the Providence Cemetery.

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From → Hope/Fralick

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