Category Archives: Treasure Chest Thursday

Treasure Chest Thursday – Military Census Record

Continuing through the personal documents of Dennis O’Connell (my paternal Great-Grandfather), I also found his 1917 Military Census Record.

This record shows that Dennis was living in election district 1, in the town of Moreau, Saratoga County, NY. As for other genealogical information, there is none. The card was filled out by Dennis, the handwriting matches many of the other documents in my possession.


Treasure Chest Thursday – 30 Year Anniversary Letter

The Ontario Paper Co., Limited

Torold, Ontario

From the office of

Arthur A Schmon

President and General Manager

September 3, 1947

Dear O’Connell,

I want to take this opportunity of telling you what a satisfaction it is to me and my associates to note that you have served this Company for thirty years. This, indeed, is a fine record and indicates that you possess those excellent qualities of faithfulness, loyalty and devotion to duty. It is a splendid thing for a man to be able to say that he has been with a company for 25 or 30 years, or more, because it is tangible evidence of a deep rooted attachment between the company and the employee that is mutually desirable and beneficial.

I congratulate you on you long service and wish to convey our appreciation of the fine effort you have made throughout the years. I trust that we will enjoy many more years of service together.

With best wishes for your health and happiness, I remain,

Yours sincerely,

Arthur Schmon

Mr. D. O’Connell

52 Albert Street

Thorold, Ontario

Treasure Chest Thursday, Record of Baptism

This letter from Our Lady of Mount Carmel is another precious document in my collection from my Great Grandfather, Larry O’Connell’s scrap-book. According to this letter, dated 7 July 1940, Dennis O’Connell was born on 6 Sep 1883 to John and Bridget O’Connell and baptized 16 Sep 1883. His sponsors were Edward and Mary Leonard. The officiating Rev. was J.J. Hayden.

I spoke to the church office just over a year ago and Our Lady of Mount Carmel closed its doors on Easter Sunday, 2009. All records are being kept by St. Mary’s Church in Granville, NY.

Our Lady of Mount Carmel.  Photo courtesy of

Treasure Chest Thursday – Will of Dennis O’Connell

 On this Treasure Chest Thursday, I bring you another document of my Great Grandfather, Dennis O’Connell.

Niagara Falls, Ont.   June 1st, 1950

To whom it may concern,

 It is my earnest wishes that all that I posses is equally divided upon my death to my two sons and daughter

Ambrose O’Connell

Linus O’Connell

Theresa O’Connell

signed this 1st day of June 1959

Dennis O’Connell

It makes we wonder if he was sick, Dennis died in Nov of 1950. At this point I still do not have his death certificate, but I hope to order it within the near future to find out.

Sentimental Sunday – The Aroma of Grandma’s House

As a child Grandma Ida, (born Margaret Jaeger on 1 Jan 1919 in IL and died 15 Apr 1980, Chicago, IL)  would make her homemade jellies for the winter. There was always a jar in the fridge and a few more in the pantry. This was a day that would be spent entirely in the kitchen. The boiling of fruits left a more than pleasant aroma. I remember standing on a chair so I was able to look into the colossal pots filled with strawberry’s,  plums or whatever other fruit she used. I can still see the way her kitchen was set up and where each of the appliances belonged. I remember this being a day long project with benefits that would last for months to come. 


Ida M. Jaeger, digital copy provided by T. Foote ©2010 Terri O’Connell



As an adult, I wish that Grandma had lived well beyond 1980. I was 8 when she passed away and never really learned to make jelly like she did. I can make freezer jelly and that is really quick to make. Nothing like Grandma did when I was a child. No mason jars or wax needed. Just a plastic container that can be stored in the freezer. Luckily, I have an aunt who learned how to do this last summer and I hope I am  able to spend a day with her over summer to learn from her. 

My favorite jelly that Grandma made was plum. It is not the same as buying a jar of Smuckers or any other brand. I have purchased a few in the past and they never taste the same.

Dennis O’Connell, Obituary

For Treasure Chest Thursday I am adding my Great Grandfather’s obituary, which is from The St. Catherines Standard. 

O’Connell, Dennis – At the Hamilton General Hospital, Friday, Nov. 17, 1950, Dennis O’Connell.

Resting at the Funeral Home of Noble S. Crowe, 26 Ormond St. S., Thorold , where prayers for the departed will be said at 7:30 this Saturday evening. Interment will take place in Hudson Falls, New York.


Dennis O’Connell obituary, St. Catherines Standard, St. Catherines, Ontario, 18  November, 1950, page 2 column 6.

Poem for Dennis

For this Treasure Chest Thursday, I am posting a poem  that was in my Grandfather, Larry O’Connell’s, scrapbook. This poem was written about his father, Dennis O’Connell. 

Fiddlers Green, 100% Union

from Pulp, Sulphite and Paper Mill Workers Journal, page fifteen (unsure of date)

They tell me Dinny O’Connnell of Thorold is gone;

Well boys I’m not surprised.

I guess he’s gone to join the host,

That live beyond the skies.

He lived his span of years on earth,

A fairly average guy, a fellow,

Who was always square;

He wouldn’t harm a fly.

Like all the old time papermakers 

And this mill has seen a few;

They’ve run of the stuff at the Ontario, 

And never lacked a crew.

They enjoyed their share of the good times, and

There were times that were not so good;

But they always produced the paper, 

As long as we kept them in the wood.

From slow speed up to high speed, 

As we know they roll today;

The boys are handling six hundred tons,

With very little hay.

Well, Dinny had his share in this, 

Like many, many, more;

We mean those boys who have worked here, 

But have passed long before.

There was Charlie Killawee and Chappie;

The Benoits, Frank Hickey, Jack Ryan and

many more.

Good fellows you’ll all remember,

We could name them by the score.

Well they’re all up in the Fiddlers Green, 

In a lovely home they say;

And sometimes one comes to visit us at night, 

But never wants to stay.

In Fiddlers Green they’re happy, 

And are having lots of fun,

And I know there is rejoicing,

Because a new member has just come.

His dues are paid forever

And his card is edged with Gold;

And he’ll never have to worry

About his growing old.
Yes, the old pals are all waiting, 

To make the welkin ring;

At Fiddlers Green they’re happy;

Now that Dinny is coming in.

Today’s Treasure

I found this poem this past week, on one of the many social websites I am on. I wanted to share with all of you…



Grandma and the Family Tree


There’s been a change in Grandma, we’ve noticed her of late,

She’s always reading history or jotting down some date.

She’s tracking back the family, we’ll all have pedigrees.

Oh, Grandma’s got a hobby, she’s climbing Family Trees. 

Poor Grandpa does the cooking and now, or so he states,

That worst of all, he has to wash the cups and dinner plates.

Grandma can’t be bothered, she’s busy as a bee

Compiling genealogy – for the Family Tree. 

She has no time to baby-sit, the curtains are a fright,

No buttons left on Grandad’s shirt, the flower bed’s a sight.

She’s given up her club work, the serials on TV,

The only thing she does nowadays is climb the Family Tree. 

She goes down to the courthouse and studies ancient lore,

We know more about our forebears than we ever knew before.

The books are old and dusty, they make poor Grandma sneeze,

A minor irritation when you’re climbing Family Trees. 

The mail is all for Grandma, it comes from near and far,

Last week she got the proof she needs to join the DAR.

A worthwhile avocation, to that we all agree,

A monumental project, to climb the Family Tree. 

Now some folks came from Scotland and some from Galway Bay,

Some were French as pastry, some German, all the way.

Some went on west to stake their claim, some stayed near by the sea,

Grandma hopes to find them all as she climbs the Family Tree. 

She wanders through the graveyard in search of date or name,

The rich, the poor, the in-between, all sleeping there the same.

She pauses now and then to rest, fanned by a gentle breeze

That blows above the Fathers of all our Family Trees. 

There were pioneers and patriots mixed in our kith and kin

Who blazed the paths of wilderness and fought through thick and thin.

But none more staunch than Grandma, whose eyes light up with glee

Each time she finds a missing branch for the Family Tree. 

Their skills were wide and varied, from carpenter to cook

And one (Alas!) the record shows was hopelessly a crook.

Blacksmith, weaver, farmer, judge, some tutored for a fee,

Long lost in time, now all recorded on the Family Tree. 

To some it’s just a hobby, to Grandma it’s much more,

She knows the joys and heartaches of those who went before.

They loved, they lost, they laughed, they wept, and now for you and me

They live again in spirit, around the Family Tree. 

At last she’s nearly finished and we are each exposed.

Life will be the same again, this we all supposed!

Grandma will cook and sew, serve cookies with our tea.

We’ll all be fat, just as before that wretched Family Tree. 

Sad to relate, the Preacher called and visited for a spell,

We talked about the Gospel, and other things as well,

The heathen folk, the poor and then – ’twas fate, it had to be,

Somehow the conversation turned to Grandma and the Family Tree. 

We tried to change the subject, we talked of everything

But then in Grandma’s voice we heard that old familiar ring.

She told him all about the past and soon was plain to see

The preacher, too, was nearly snared by Grandma and the Family Tree. 

He never knew his Grandpa, his mother’s name was … Clark?

He and Grandma talked and talked, outside it grew quite dark.

We’d hoped our fears were groundless, but just like some disease,

Grandma’s become an addict – she’s hooked on Family Trees! 

Our souls were filled with sorrow, our hearts sank with dismay,

Our ears could scarce believe the words we heard our Grandma say,

“It sure is a lucky thing that you have come to me,

I know exactly how it’s done, I’ll climb your Family Tree!” 

–Author Unknown

Larry’s Ships

On Monday, I wrote about the beautiful ships my Grandpa built when I was little. This is one of the few photo’s I have of his ships. 


Ida’s Afghans

On Monday, I wrote about the beautiful afghan’s my Grandma Ida crocheted when I was a child. Here are some pictures of her beautiful work.






I just received this afghan from my cousin Tracy, she has a few afghans and was ever so generous when she gave me this one. I  will treasure it forever.

%d bloggers like this: