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16 June 2017

Mathew Couch (1835-1905) lived in Joliet, Illinois

Mathew and Sophona Couch moved to Joliet, Will County, Illinois in about 1873. Researching their family offers inconsistency into their family structure. The differences range from when they arrived in Joliet to the children's names and ages. The following narrative offers my attempt to unscramble the children. With the number of five children as the only consistency, hopefully the reader will follow my train of thought. This article provides only my conclusion. In order to follow all the inconsistencies, look at my Roots_Digger Family Tree (Under Construction) on for more information.

How come I followed this family from their marriage, 24 December 1860 in Canada. [Ontario, Canada, County Marriage Registers, 1858-1869 [database on-line at Ancestry] to Joliet? Couch is a surname I am researching; I had Couch family members living in Joliet at this time; Joliet is my birth home.

According to the 1910 and 1900 U.S. census, the mother had five children. WHO are the five children? WHO are the four children living in 1900 and the three children living in 1910? Normally research is from the latest to the earliest. That is how the research was conducted, but to understand the name changes, this account is written in reverse.

 In the 1871 Canadian census [Year: 1871; Census Place: Innisfil, Simcoe South, Ontario; Roll: C-9961; Page: 50; Family No: 177 on Ancestry].  Matthew and Sophia are enumerated with four children: Martha J born in Ontario about 1862, Arthur J born in Ontario about 1863, Amaline born in Ontario about 1865 and Allace V born in Ontario about 1867.

Forward to 1880, the U.S. census provides the names of five children living with Mathew and his wife in Joliet, Illinois. The children are: Martha born about 1862 in Canada, J Arthur born about 1864 in Canada, Emma born about 1866 in Canada,  Victoria born about 1875 in Canada and Henry born about 1877 in Illinois. Who are Emma and Victoria?

Emma could easily be Ameline? Could Victoria be Allace V? The name and dates do not match. Are these two different children, Allace and Victoria? Several records suggest Alice born in 1866. Has the research mixed names and birth dates? After three days of reconstructing this family, the following is my conclusion.
Martha J was born 1862 in Ontario, Canada and died 24 October 1898.
Arthur Joseph was born 1864 in Ontario, Canada and died 1900.
Emma Agnes was born 1865 in Ontario, Canada and died 18 April 1957.
Alice Victoria was born either 1866 or 1869 in Ontario, Canada and died 1960.
Henry Wesley was born 6 Aug 1877 in Joliet, Illinois and died about 1946.

Children living past the available census records were Henry Wesley, Alice Victoria and Emma Agnes. So, in the 1900 U.S. census, the child deceased would be Martha J. In the 1910 U.S. census, the children deceased would be Martha J and Arthur Joseph.

All research should have multiple documents pointing to the same conclusion. That is not possible with this story. So please help me find other references to the same events. For how I came to my conclusion, see Roots_Digger Family Tree (Under Construction) on

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