Monday, March 29, 2010

long lost cousins

I have been corresponding with a newly found third cousin, Merryfield Laimbeer Petersen from Pennsylvania. We both descend from the Abbot side of the family, and branch off at our great-grandparent's line. Here are the genealogical details (non-family can skip this bit and go straight to the photos, below). Forgive me in advance if I get any of it wrong.

We are both descended from:

Abiel Abbot m. Phebe Ballard (G-g-g-g-g grandparents)
Benjamin Abbot m. Joanna Holmes (G-g-g-g grandparents)
Francis Holmes Abbot m. Mary Wade (G-g-g grandparents)
Thomas Wade Abbot m. Helen Tracey Adams (G-g grandparents)

Thomas and Helen had two sons -- my great grandfather Edgar Wade Abbot (who married my great-grandmother, Isabel Esther McCormick) , and Merry's great-grandfather Frank Prentice Abbot.
Both brothers were involved with the GDA (Gerard, Dufraisseix & Abbot) Haviland Limoges porcelain company.

OK -- now our lines branch off, and here is Merry's branch:

Frank Prentice Abbot m Mary Augusta Laimbeer (Her great grandparents)


Kate (Kitty) Laimbeer Abbot m Francis Effingham Laimbeer (Just to make things really confusing, her grandparents were 1st cousins once removed. Her grandfather's grandfather was her grandmother's great-grandfather. Ouch. My head hurts.)
They had a daughter named Dorothea, also known as "Daphrie" and a son:

William Laimbeer m Helen Hope Nixon (Her parents)


Merryfield Laimbeer
m James Lawrence Petersen

David, Susan, Pamela, Elizabeth (Her kids)
10 grandchildren

Merry remembers visiting Grandama and Grandpa Loomis with her Aunt Daphrie in Ruxton, and has notes from them in her family papers. How neat. Oh, and Merry has a cousin, Frank Laimbeer. And now we're all facebook friends. How funny is that?

I discovered that in Great Grandma Isabel's guestbook from her house in Washington, Connecticut, there are dozens of signatures, notes, and photos of the Abbot/Laimbeer family, dating from 1911 to the mid-1920s. Here are some images and words from the past.

Click on the images to see them larger.

My Abbot side:
Helen Abbot Lapham (great aunt) - Isabel Esther McCormick Abbot (great grandma)
Dorothy Abbot Loomis (grandma) and Edgar Wade Abbot (great grandpa)

Cousin Theodora (before she married Mr. DuBois),
Elizabeth Ruth Abbot (Grandma Loo had a doll named Elizabeth Ruth, remember?)
and Kate Abbot Laimbeer

The photo above is from Isabel's guestbook, and the same photo, below, is from Merry's collection.

A poem by Cousin Theodora -- apparently the furnace went out in October. Cold!
Cousin Theodora went on to write a number of historical novels and children's books.
Click here to read about her life.

In addition to the signature of Kate Abbot Laimbeer,
at the top of the page there is a note that D.A. (Dorothy Abbot) went to Texas.
I wonder if she went with C.D.L. to visit Loomis Ranch?

There is a note, written by Helene, tucked in the guestbook noting that the Lapham children
referred to the Laimbeers as the Lame-Deers. Sorry, cousins!

The Laimbeers Garden City, New York, 1919 (and how they're related to Merry)
Frank (Uncle) - Jack (Uncle)
Francis & Kate (grandparents) - Bill (Father)
Dick (Uncle) - Daphrie (Aunt)

Frank (uncle) - Kate (grandmother)
Jack (uncle) - Bill (father)
Aunt Bessie (?) - Esther (?)
(Merry isn't sure who the elderly woman and baby are --
Aunt Bessie is Elizabeth Ruth Abbot, who never married.
According to Helene, she lived with IEA and EWA -- and never left her room.
She must be Frank and Edgar's sister.
I think the baby looks like Aunt Esther, don't you?
I wonder if Grandma Loo was visiting and took this photo?)
Dick (Uncle) - Daphrie (Aunt) - Francis (grandfather)
Garden City, NY circa 1920s

So -- hello to our newly discovered cousins! And welcome to the family!


  1. This is such an amazing find! It is so wonderful to learn about the people that shaped our lives, our parent's lives, to see those photographs. Thanks for sharing!

  2. I love the photo of the group in front of the car, with George Kane, the driver in the background. Aunt Isabel looks like she's got a secret she'd like to share. Wonderful collection. I will revisit a few times to get the full reading and viewing. This is a lovely effort!

  3. Francis (Frank) LaimbeerMarch 30, 2010 at 5:14 AM

    It is wonderful to make contact with more family and be able to add more people to the family history.

  4. Tickled to know more about Aunt Bessie. Mother was always interested in who and why. Either she or Grandma told me that Aunt Bessie's room, for whatever reason, seemed to attract moths who would beat on her window trying to get in, often succeeding in the summer, much to her distress. Isn't it odd, the stories that may become one's legacy?

    Dorothy would not have travelled to Texas with CDL in 1918. First of all the war was either just on or just finished and as I have a photo of him in uniform, he probably would have been somewhere else. Secondly, I don't know if they were an item then, as he didn't ask her to marry him just before he did his European Tour sometime in 1920. She said no, later regretted it and when he got back in Decemberish she met him, he asked her again and she said yes and they were married in Jan. 1921. So-lastly, with a thought to the times, women didn't travel with men unless they were good and married. There ya' go. My thoughts.

    This is all so neat. Thank you Lucy, for putting it together and sharing.