As the 52 Weeks challenge continues, I find myself a bit behind and trying to catch up. And, I’m also feeling a bit like I’ve run out of stories to write because I’m moving into the generations of ancestors with whom I have no memories or stories.
I suppose one of my problems is that as a journalist, I’ve been trained to find people and tell their stories. It’s a bit trickier when all your sources are documents hidden in a research library somewhere and you don’t know much about the people of whom you write.
I’m hoping that some time spent researching in these next few weeks will help me feel more connected as I move through the generations and branches on my family tree.
This week’s post is Winifred Mary Pasha, my second great-grandmother.
She was born March 29, 1870, in Washington, Mo., the daughter of Jean Baptiste Pashia and Lucy Flynn.
At age 10, she lived with her parents, three brothers and two sisters in Kingston, Mo. At some point in her childhood or youth, she shortened her name to Winnie.
Her marriage certificate notes her name as Winnie. She married Griffith Joseph James on April 11, 1894, in Fredericktown, Mo. They had seven children in 11 years.
Griff was a trader and apparently away from the family home during the 1910 census because Winnie is listed as head of household. By 1920, he’s returned home.
In 1930, she is a widow living in St. Louis with her married children and a niece. A decade later, her children have left and she’s living with her niece Margaret Agnew, who is listed as an adopted daughter.
She died Nov. 13, 1957, at age 87. She is buried in St. Joachim Cemetery.
My aunt told me a story recently about going to visit Winnie Pashia before her death. She and my father and their mother had traveled back from California and my aunt remembered seeing snow for the first time. My dad, only a toddler at the time, didn’t have any other recollections except that the room was dark and his grandmother was lying in a bed. I share a similar memory about my great-grandmother in this line — visting her as a young child when she was clearly near the end of her life.