Mysteries uncovered

The last week I have been focusing my research efforts on my Poole and Smith lines from Raleigh, Wake Co., NC. My great grandparents were Alzer Fay Poole and Mamie Lorraine (nee Smith) Poole. Alzer and Mamie were married September 3, 1928 at the Salvation Army in Downtown Raleigh, NC. Mamie was 16 years old and Alzer was 22 years old.

Mamie’s parents were John D. Smith, Jr. and Avana Blanche ( nee Catlette) Smith. John and Blanche as she was known by were married on 1 February 1905. Their first child, John Bryant Smith was born on Christmas Day 1905. Their daughter Maggie Pauline was born in 1909 and my great grandmother Mamie Lorraine was born on 3 November 1911. All of this for the most part, was familiar information to me. The mysteries however, were with my 2x times great grandmother Avana Blanche (Catlette) Smith.

I had always heard that Blanche had died giving birth to a child and her death certificate dated 1 November 1918 confirms this. Pre-eclampsia is the official cause of death per the record. I have no concrete knowledge as to where Blanche is buried but assuming she is buried near or next to her husband John who died on 20 September 1936, I am going to assume like most of the rest of the family that she is buried at a little overgrown cemetery in Raleigh, NC called Macedonia.

While doing some online research over the course of the last couple of days, I ran across a death certificate for a baby just identified as Baby Girl Smith, daughter of John D. Smith and Blanche Catlette Smith in the Caraleigh Mills suburb of Raleigh, in Wake County, NC. This baby girl was born stillborn on January 7, 1914 and the records indicate she had been deceased in utero for quite sometime. Until I saw this record for myself, with exact information on the parentage, I had no previous knowledge of this baby girl. No one in the family had ever mentioned this child or this pregnancy. Given that she was born stillborn, it’s highly likely none of the family members, in this case her sister who was my great grandmother, even knew about her sister. I’ve posted the death certificate for Baby Girl Smith below.

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