Aunt Died: Mary Feinour Obituary

17-year-old Helena Muffly wrote exactly 100 years ago today:

Saturday, July 20, 1912:  Today seem oh so lonesome and sad. Ma and Pa went to attend a funeral. The deceased was my aunt. We kiddies kept house and did the little duties that were left to us.

Mary Feinour Obituary. Source: Milton Evening Standard (July 19, 1912). Click to enlarge.




Mrs. Mary Feinour, widow of Mathias Feinour, died yesterday afternoon at 12:30 o’clock, at the home of her brothers, Samuel and George Muffley, at Ottawa, Limestone township Montour county, following an illness of several months, part of which time she was in a hospital at Williamsport.

Mrs. Feinour was aged 56 years. She is survived by a son, Edward Duglas. Also by the following brothers and sisters: Dr.Oscar Muffley, of Turbotville; Albert, of Watsontow; Asher, of Pottsgrove; and Samuel and George, at whose home she died; Mrs. George Walters, of Montandon, and Mrs. Samuel Rhone, of McEwensville.

The funeral will take place tomorrow morning at ten o’clock from the home at Ottawa. Interment will be made at Watontown.

Her middle-aged granddaughter’s comments 100 years later:

The aunt who died was Mary Feinour. She was a sister of Grandma’s father Albert.

She must have been reasonably prominent because her obituary was at the top center of the front page of the Milton Evening Standard—yet I feel like she’d had a difficult life.

Mary was a widow who lived with her two bachelor brothers. According to the 1910 census her two children, 19-year-old S. Kathryn and 14-year-old John, were also part of the household. But the obituary only mentions one child–Edward. (Something seems inconsistent between the census and the obituary, but nonetheless I wonder if she had a daughter who died.)

Mary is buried next to her parents in the Watsontown Cemetery. I do not know where her husband is buried.

(I’m not even sure how her name is spelled, it’s Feinour in the obituary and Fienour on the gravestone.)

I’ve been fascinated by Mary for awhile–though Grandma’s diary entries always focused on her unmarried uncles and not on Mary. I’ve mentioned Mary in two previous posts:

Two Bachelor Uncles

Went Visiting: Only One Uncle at Home

I asked my father if he knew anything about Mary or her children. He didn’t.

Mary is very tangential to my genealogical research. Yet, ever since I first saw her tombstone—and realized that she wasn’t buried next to her husband–I’ve wanted to know more about her.

I know it’s a rabbit hole and I don’t have the time to do extensive research on Mary—but maybe, just maybe, someday I’ll learn more of her story. If I ever do, I’ll share it with you.

10 thoughts on “Aunt Died: Mary Feinour Obituary

  1. It’s sobering to consider the idea of dying at 56 years of age, since I’m 55 now and my mother died when she was 59. And yet it looks like your great-grandaunt had become a widow and had lost a child at even earlier ages. So much sorrow in such a short life – I can see why you want to know more about her.

  2. Hi. One thing about research, you will often find a tangent that interests you. Once I spent two months on a family I discovered in the census… I’m not even sure they were related. Jane

  3. For me, those side stories that I dinna intend to research or tell seem to free up my mind for the head-on stories I am working on. Good luck with the side stories.

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