Uncle Will goes West

William T. Gardiner
Lydia Ensey Gardiner

Lydia Ensey Gardiner

William T. Gardiner

William T. Gardiner

William (Will) Thomas Gardiner (1858-1938) born in Baltimore, Maryland was the son of William H. Gardiner (1827-1902) and Ann Frances Green Gardiner (1827-1902). In 1860 Will was 2 years of age and residing with his family in the New Market District, Frederick County, MD.  His father’s profession  listed as a farmer. The value of  real estate owned is $500 and personal value is $100.   The census also reveals that his paternal Grandmother, Henrietta was also living with the family[1].

In 1870 the family lived in the New Market District of Frederick County, Maryland but the postal office is listed as Urbana, instead of Frederick.  The family was still engaged in farming.[2] His grandmother no lingered appeared on the census as she [Henrietta Simpson Gardiner] died September 30, 1866 and is buried in the Central Church Cemetery, New Market, Maryland.[3]

In June of 1880 the family is found to be residing on the Cracklin District of Montgomery County, MD.  Will is 21 years of age, and working on the family farm. In addition to his direct family members they also have residing with them Thomas Smallwood, age 13 who serves as a houseboy and Stephen Musgrove, age 15 a farm hand.

On May 2, 1882 Will married Miss Lydia E. Ensey (1854-1886)[4]. The marriage application states that Will resided in Howard County, MD working on a farm.  One would speculate that perhaps he was working on the Ensey’s farm and that is where he met Lydia..of course this is just speculation.  Lydia was born in Poplar Springs, Howard County, MD.  Daughter of Richard L. (1823-1910) and Mary Jane Ensey. Richard L. Ensey was the postmaster for Woodbine, Carroll County, Maryland in 1855.[5] In 1880, the Ensey family lived in the 4th Election District of Howard County, MD.  The Howard County, Maryland Directory of 1878 lists the family living in Cooksville – described as being 2 1/4 miles from Hood’s Mills and that Richard L. Ensey owned and operated a hotel.[6]

Sometime between 1882 & 1886 Will and Lydia headed out west to Iowa to make a new home.  I have wondered many time why he headed to Iowa, was it in the pursuit of land, an opportunity or family? Curious to find a reason I search the censuses’ for Lydia’s brothers low and behold, the 1885 census reveal that John D. Ensey, Lydia’s brother, was living in Guthrie County, Iowa[7].  Since I cannot find Will T. on the Iowa census of 1885 I would assume it was late 1885 or 1886 when he went West.

On May 21, 1886 Will and Lydia were blessed with the birth of their son Lee Ensey Gardiner[8].  Sadly Lydia, age 31,would die during childbirth never knowing his mother[9].

Will would return to Maryland with his infant son and after Lee’s christening  Will began the journey out west to his home in Iowa without his son.  Lydia Ensey Gardiner is buried in Menlo Cemetery in Guthrie County, Iowa. Lee was left in Maryland with his maternal grandparents until he was 21 years of age.

10 years after the death of his first wife he would marry again[10].   In 1886 Will wed Miss Mary Josephine Gamber (1877-1936) daughter of Sarah Jane Watts (1832-1913) and John Gamber (1818-1889).

Josephine Gamber Gardiner

Josephine Gamber Gardiner

In 1900 Will and Josephine lived in Pocahontas Town, Iowa[11].  William Bernard (3) and Forest Cleland (2) their children were also listed.

The Iowa Census of 1905 show the family still living in Pocahontas, Iowa with the addition of two new children – Mildred and Donald.  The 1905 census lists only name and no other information about the family.

By 1910 Will and Jo added several more children to the family – Janet (Sallie), Louis G, and Lawrence Alva Gardiner.  I was also delighted to see that Will and his first son, Lee Ensey Gardiner were reunited and living under the same roof[12].  It is also interesting to note that several other people were also living with them – Cleland Gilchrist, partner, Jane Gamber, Mother-in-law, Earl E. Ensey is listed as a hired hand, but he is actually a nephew of  Lydia’s.  I wonder if he and Lee ventured west together.  Edward Taggert, hired hand and Charles Marcy also a hired hand.

Barn

In 1915 two more children appear – Frances J. who is listed as 8 years of age (must have been in the outhouse when the 1910 census taker came) and Walter Gardiner being 2 years of age. Josephine and the all the children list their religion as Methodist.  Will T. did not disclose h is religion.  They are all residing in Grant, Pocahontas, Iowa. Walter only appears once on the census records – Family memoirs state that Walter died in a forest fire in 1918[13].  This would explain his disappearance from the 1920 census records.

Sometime between 1915 and 1920 the family relocated to North Dakota, Grant County in the Melrose Township[14]. The family still engaged in farming.  However they did not stay long and we find them living back in Iowa by 1925.

The 1925 Iowa census have me confused as to the exact location. as they appear in two different locations – one listing them as being in Dickinson, Lake, Iowa and one being in Polk. Des Moines, Iowa.

back of postcard 1911In 1930 Josephine Gardiner is living with her son William in Plymouth County, Plymouth Township in Merrill Town, Iowa.  William is the proprietor of a hotel.  His wife, Mary V. is listed as a waitress at the hotel.  They have two boarder also listed: Andrew Littman and Clara B. Gardner[15].  I am unable to find Will T. on the 1930 census.

Mary Josephine Gamber Gardiner passed away in 1936 and is buried next to Will’s first wife in the Menlo Cemetery in Guthrie County, Iowa. William Thomas Gardiner passed away two years later in 1938 and is buried in the same cemetery next to both of his wives.


[1] Source Citation: Year: 1860; Census Place: New Market, Frederick, Maryland; Roll  M653_475; Page: 0; Image: 402. Source Information: Ancestry.com. 1860 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2004. Original data: United States of America, Bureau of the Census. Eighth Census of the United States, 1860. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 1860. M653, 1,438 rolls.

[2] Source Citation: Year: 1870; Census Place: New Market, Frederick, Maryland; Roll  M593_587; Page: 412; Image: 211 Source Information: Ancestry.com. 1870 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2003. Original data: 1870.  United States. Ninth Census of the United States, 1870. Washington, D.C. National Archives and Records Administration. M593, RG29, 1,761 rolls. Minnesota. Minnesota Census Schedules for 1870. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration. T132, RG29, 13 rolls.

[3] Jones-Hudson, Kathi. “Central Chapel United Methodist Church Cemetery.” USGenWeb Tombstone Project. Kathi Jones-Hudson, 25 June 2006. Web. 24 Sept. 2009. <http://usgwarchives.net>.

[4] “Howard County Marriage Licenses.” Howard County Historical Society. Web. 24 Sept. 2009. <http://www.hchsmd.org>.

[5] United States Official postal guide with the name of Postmasters. Washington, DC: J. Shillington, 1855.

[6] The Maryland Directory of 1878. Baltimore, MD: J. Frank Lewis & Co., 1878.

“Howard County, Maryland Directory 1878.” New River Notes. http://www.newrivernotes.com/md/howard1878.htm (accessed September 2009).

[7] Source Information: Ancestry.com. Iowa State Census Collection, 1836-1925 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2007. Original data: Microfilm of Iowa State Censuses, 1856, 1885, 1895, 1905, 1915, 1925 as well various special censuses from 1836-1897 obtained from the State Historical Society of Iowa via Heritage Quest.

[8] Source Citation: Number: 481-09-3233;Issue State: Iowa;Issue Date: Before 1951. Source Information:Ancestry.com. Social Security Death Index [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2009. Original data: Social Security Administration. Social Security Death Index, Master File. Social Security Administration.

[9] Source Information:Ancestry.com. Iowa Cemetery Records [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: The Generations Network, Inc., 2000. Original data: Works Project Administration. Graves Registration Project. Washington, D.C.: n.p., n.d.

[10] Source Citation: Year: 1900; Census Place: Center, Pocahontas, Iowa; Roll  T623_452; Page: 18B; Enumeration District: 162. Source Information: Ancestry.com. 1900 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2004. Original data: United States of America, Bureau of the Census. Twelfth Census of the United States, 1900. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 1900. T623, 1854 rolls.

[11] Source Citation: Year: 1900; Census Place: Center, Pocahontas, Iowa; Roll  T623_452; Page: 18B; Enumeration District: 162. Source Information: Ancestry.com. 1900 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2004. Original data: United States of America, Bureau of the Census. Twelfth Census of the United States, 1900. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 1900. T623, 1854 rolls.

[12] Source Citation: Year: 1910; Census Place: Grant, Pocahontas, Iowa; Roll  T624_416; Page: 3A; Enumeration District: 190; Image: 826. Source Information: Ancestry.com. 1910 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2006. For details on the contents of the film numbers, visit the following NARA web page: NARA Or (Gardiner)original data: United States of America, Bureau of the Census. Thirteenth Census of the United States, 1910. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 1910. T624, 1,178 rolls.

[13] Gardiner, Marie Antoinette Bowlen, “My Memoir” The Gardiner’s & Relatives (August 1954)

[14] Year: 1920;Census Place: Melrose, Grant, South Dakota; Roll  T625_1719; Page: 9B; Enumeration District: 158; Image: 1068.

[15] Source Citation: Year: 1930; Census Place: Plymouth, Plymouth, Iowa; Roll  672; Page: 5B; Enumeration District: 25; Image: 950.0. Ancestry.com. 1930 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2002. Original data: United States of America, Bureau of the Census. Fifteenth Census of the United States, 1930. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 1930. T626, 2,667 rolls.