Orrin Homer Stewart

ID#296, b. 1878, d. 16 March 1938
Father: Samuel McKinney Stewart
Mother: Martha Emmaline "Mattie" Jefferson

Birth date: 1878 (see detailed discussion below).1,2,3,4
Birth place: Marshall County, West Virginia.5,6,7

He was commonly known by his middle name, Homer.

Trying to determine Homer's birth date seemed easy when I first found two birth registers showing 28 June 1878 as his date of birth.5,6 Then the alternates began appearing: 23 September 1878 on his WWI draft registration8 and 23 September 1879 on his death certificate (for which wife Bessie was the informant) and in his obituary. The death certificate shows his age at death as 58 years, 5 months, 23 days - the obituary agrees that he died at age 58.9,10

Turning to U.S. census records, Homer first appears in the 1880 census, recorded as being 1 year old and born in September,11 supporting a birth in September 1878. Sure enough, the 1900 census shows his birth date as September 1878 and his age as 21.3 The next three census years show the expected ages of 31 in 1910, 41 in 1920 and 51 in 1930 - all confirming a birth year of 1878, although the month could be either September or June with those ages.12,13,4

It seems that 28 June 1878 recorded in the birth registers should be the correct date, and I am convinced that 1878 is the right year, but the month and day is a different matter. Considering that the family always used September beginning with that early 1880 census and that Homer and Bessie used September 23 in documents, I'm left wondering if the birth registers are in error. As for the use of 1879 on Homer's death certificate and in his obituary, it's quite believable that Bessie could have simply gotten the year wrong in her time of grief or that the funeral home made a mistake. After all, his gravestone does give his year of death as 1878.

At this point, I'm leaning toward a birth date of 23 September 1878 ... of course that's not to say my mind won't be changed in the future if I find more supporting documentation!

Homer married Elizabeth Virginia "Bess" Harris, daughter of Samuel Harris and Mary Elizabeth Richmond, on 16 October 1918 at Moundsville, Marshall County, West Virginia. James B. Smith, a minister, certified that he united them in marriage.7 Bessie made the dress she wore and Homer gave her fox furs for a wedding present.14

Homer died from bronchial asthma (flu) on 16 March 1938 at Fork Ridge, Marshall County, West Virginia. (R.D. 2, Glen Easton). Per his death certificate, he had been a farmer for 25 years until 13 days prior.9,10

An obituary was published on 17 March 1938 in an unidentified newspaper, Cameron, Marshall County, West Virginia.10 The following is a transcription of that obituary:

"SUMMONED BY DEATH
     CAMERON, W.Va; March 17 -- O. Homer Stewart, 58, prominent Marshall County citizen and for 14 years county cominissioner, died last night at his home, at Fork Ridge, near Cameron.
     He died in the same house where he was born September 23, 1879. He was a son of Samuel and Martha Jefferson Stewart. He was a member of the Fork Ridge Christian Church, of the Jr. O. U. A. M. and I. O. O. F. Lodges at Fork Ridge, the Knights of Malta at Moundsville, and the Moundsville Lions Club.
     Surviving are his wife, Mrs. Bessie Harris Stewart; a son, Homer, Jr; two daughters, Misses Opal and Imogene Stewart, at home two brothers, Ralph Parkersburg, and Carson, of Hundred, and four sisters, Mrs. Myrtle Fish, McMechen; Mrs. Silas Harris, New Athens, O; Mrs. W. F. Hopkins, Moundsville, and Miss Martha Stewart, of Moundsville.
     Funeral services will be held at 2:30 p. m., Saturday, March 19, at the Fork Ridge Christian Church, in charge of the Rev. O. H. Howard and the Rev. W. E. Pierce. Burial will be in the Fork Ridge Cemetery"


[original spelling and punctuation retained]

Orrin's body was interred on 19 March 1938 in the Fork Ridge Christian Church Cemetery, 8681 Fork Ridge Road, Glen Easton, Marshall County, West Virginia; his name appears on the gravestone as "Orrin Homer Stewart."9,1

Click on camera icon(s) to view photo(s) of gravestone, then use your browser's back button to return here.15

Census Records

YearLocationEnumeration info as recorded
1880Marshall County, West VirginiaHomer Stewart, male, age 1, son, single, born in Sep. in W.Va
(Official U.S. Census Date: 01 June 1880)2,16,17
1900Marshall County, West VirginiaHomer Stewart, male, age 21, son, single, born Sept 1878 in West Virginia, a laborer
(Official U.S. Census Date: 01 June 1900)18
1930Marshall County, West VirginiaO. Homer Stewart, male, age 51, head, married, age 40 at first marriage, born in West Virginia, a self-employed farmer (general farm), not a veteran
(Official U.S. Census Date: 01 April 1930)4

Deceased Children of Orrin Homer Stewart and Elizabeth Virginia "Bess" Harris:

Family Line(s):
Harris Index
Last Edited Date=16 Feb 2016

Citations

  1. [S71] Orrin Homer and Bess (Harris) Stewart gravestone, Fork Ridge Christian Cemetery, Marshall County, West Virginia; transcribed by Jo Ellen Dalton, 1983.
  2. [S841] Samuel Stewart household, 1880 U. S. Census, Marshall County, West Virginia, Cameron District, Enumeration District 188, page 4C (66 stamped), National Archives micropublication T9_1407.
  3. [S973] Samuel Stewart household, 1900 U.S. Census, Marshall County, West Virginia, Cameron District, Enumeration District 67, sheet 10A, National Archives micropublication T623_1765, shows birth date as Sept 1878.
  4. [S241] O. Homer Stewart household, 1930 U.S. Census, Marshall County, West Virginia, Cameron Magisterial District, Enumeration District 26-2, sheet 6B, National Archives micropublication T626_2543.
  5. [S809] O. H. Stewart, Marshall County Register of Births, electronic image by West Virginia Archives & History, online http://www.wvculture.org/vrr/va_bcsearch.aspx, file 4132552_00361.jpg.
  6. [S810] O. H. Stewart (incorrectly transcribed as C. H. Stewart), Marshall County Register of Births, electronic image by West Virginia Archives & History, online http://www.wvculture.org/vrr/va_bcsearch.aspx, file 4132552_00185.jpg.
  7. [S765] Marriage License for Orrin H. Stewart and Bessie Harris, Marshall County, electronic image by West Virginia Archives & History, online http://www.wvculture.org/vrr/va_mcsearch.aspx, file 4130838_00370.jpg.
  8. [S618] World War I Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918, online http://www.ancestry.com (Provo, Utah: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc.), Orrin Homer Stewart data.
  9. [S759] Orrin H. Stewart, Certificate of Death, Marshall County, electronic image by West Virginia Archives & History, online http://www.wvculture.org/vrr/va_dcsearch.aspx, file 1983332_0000816.jpg.
  10. [S1625] O. Homer Stewart obituary, undated clipping from unidentified newspaper.
  11. [S841] Samuel Stewart household, 1880 U. S. Census, Marshall County, West Virginia, Cameron District, Enumeration District 188, page 4C (66 stamped), National Archives micropublication T9_1407, supports month of September vs. June.
  12. [S1626] O. H. Stewart household, 1910 U.S. Census, Marshall County, West Virginia, Cameron District, Enumeration District 78, sheet 2A (2 stamped), National Archives micropublication T624_1688.
  13. [S1627] O. H. Stewart household, 1920 U.S. Census, Marshall County, West Virginia, Cameron District, Enumeration District 45, sheet 9A (231 stamped), National Archives micropublication T625_1952.
  14. [S862] Interview with LIVING Suarez, by Jo Ellen (Kuhn) Dalton, 27 June 2010.
  15. [S315] Digital photograph of Orrin Homer and Bess (Harris) Stewart gravestone in Fork Ridge Christian Church Cemetery (Fork Ridge Road, Glen Easton, Marshall County, West Virginia); photo taken by Jo Ellen Dalton, 04 October 2005.
  16. [S842] "Isaac Grimes," presented by The Marshall County WVGenWeb, online http://www.lindapages.com/marshall/7wvi-grimes.htm. Information pertaining to explains relationships between the three Gump individuals.
  17. [S843] "Ancestors of Mona Marguerite "Peg" Delbridge," submitted by Mona Marguerite "Peg" Delbridge, presented by The Marshall County WVGenWeb, online http://www.lindapages.com/marshall/dobbs/margdelbridge.htm. Information pertaining to provides support for source no. 1099.
  18. [S973] Samuel Stewart household, 1900 U.S. Census, Marshall County, West Virginia, Cameron District, Enumeration District 67, sheet 10A, National Archives micropublication T623_1765.