Sunday, May 6, 2012

The Mystery of John Lemon Continues


John Lemon was the oldest brother of my great-grandpa, Isaac B. Lemon.  I believe I found him in Pontiac, living with his wife and child at 74 Parkhurst.  In the 1900 Census he states his father was born in Pennsylvania and his mother in England.  This fits Isaac and Ann Elizabeth Tiffin Lemon.  John and his wife, Lavina Hicks Lemon were married in Macomb County, Michigan, which also fits, as that is where the Lemon siblings landed when they came to Michigan from Canada after the death of their parents.  Their father's brother, Abner Lemon, had a farm in Macomb County. 

I had written here before about being unable to find John Clayton Lemon.  The whole family disappears after the 1920 Census.  One of the reasons was the death of Lavina.  I found her death certificate online and she died in 1919 at the age of 63.  It states she was married, her spouse was John Lemon, her address was 74 Parkhurst, Pontiac, Oakland County, Michigan.  It also told me where she was born, Riley Center in Macomb County, the names of her parents, where they were born, and her actual date of birth.  The information was given by "Mrs. Clayton Lemon."  Ella! 

Then I discovered Ella's death certificate online.  She died 6 months after Lavina.  Her cause of death is listed as "Influenza and childbirth."  She must have been pregnant when Lavina died.  I did not find a death certificate for the child she was carrying.  I did find two Lemon children: John C, and Jean M. living with a John Bowman, who is widowed and living with his unmarried daughter, Hessie, spelled "Hescia" in the 1930 Census.  Of John Clayton, the children's father and Ella's widower, I can find no trace in Michigan. 

I found a Clayton Lemon, born abt. 1884 in Michigan, living in Glendale, California with a Martha Lemon, listed as his wife, and two others, Frank Tomkins, age 22, born in Canada, and Mable Tomkins, age 15, also born in Canada.  Their mother is listed as Martha Lemon, and they are identified as Clayton Lemon's stepchildren.  I believe this is John Clayton Lemon.  His father, John M. Lemon, is nowhere to be found in any Census record after 1920, and I can't find a death certificate in Michigan online.  I believe he died between 1921 and 1930.  1920 is the last year for which Michigan death certificates can be found online.  In 1900 he and Lavina lived alone.  They rented their home in Pontiac.  By 1910 they owned their home.  John M. is still listed as owning his home at 74 Parkhurst in the 1920 census. 

So, a mystery.  

1 comment:

  1. I can answer the questions about what happened to Ella's children. Look for the "King Family Tree" on

    Valorie King