Tuesday, July 8, 2014

52 Ancestors: Florence P. Berger (#14)

L-R: Susanna vonAllmen Berger, Gideon G. Berger
and Florence P. Berger.  Circa 1917, Oakland, CA.
When I first began researching my family tree I asked my grandmother for information on her branches.  Among the things she told me was that her father's sister, Florence, had been dropped as an infant and was mentally handicapped because of it.

 Whether this is true or not, I do not know.  I do think Florence did have some sort of handicap however.  Family members always mentioned Florence in letters.  The tone paints a picture of Florence as a kind, thoughtful and well loved family member, albeit one who seems to be treated/referred to in a very childlike manner.

Florence was born in Los Angeles, California on 11 June, 1890.  She was the youngest of John W. and Susanna vonAllmen Berger's ten known children.  Her family had come to the area a few years earlier due to John's poor health.  Not long after Florence's birth, the family moved north, to Oakland, Alameda, California where they remained.  Florence's father died there when Florence was a year and a half old.

When Florence was nine, she was enumerated in the 1900 US Census.  She was living in Oakland with her mother and siblings and was attending school.

Ten years later, in the 1910 US Census, Florence is still living with her mother, as well as her brother Jesse, and sister, Madeline, in Oakland.  Florence is enumerated as being able to read and write.

Still in Oakland in 1920, Florence's brother Jesse, has become the head of the household.  Their mother, Susanna, is also still living with them.  The household is the same in 1930 as well.

In 1940, Florence has moved to nearby Berkeley and is living with her sister, Madeline, and nephew. The box for highest education level is left blank for Florence.

Florence's 41st birthday was a memorable one, though for a sad reason.  Her mother, Susanna, died on that day in 1932.

Unlike Florence's siblings and mother, she never seems to have registered to vote.  She also never seems to have had an occupation, and appears sporadically through city directories.  She also appears to have not lived on her own.

Florence died in Alameda County, California on 11 August 1962.  Where specifically and from what, I do not know.

There are many things about Florence I would like to know.  Ordering her death certificate would probably answer some of these questions, but I am waiting to see if Alameda Co. death records get released online first (Alameda Co. vital records are very expensive).

Also on my list is calling Mountain View Cemetery in Oakland to see if she is buried in the Berger family plot there.

(This is an entry in the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks Challenge hosted by No Story Too Small)

1 comment:

  1. Florence looks like such a happy girl in the photo. It's a challenge to find information about females, especially when they're not married and/or don't have children, but it seems like you've done well to find her in city directories. I don't suppose Florence would have had much of a public social life to have been included in local newspapers, would she? But maybe there's an Alameda newspaper with her obituary? Maybe.... (But you've probably already looked because it seems like you're very thorough.)


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