My Ancestors: Emma Holl

Emma Holl is my great grandmother. She was born October 22, 1891 in La Crosse, Wisconsin and she died March 8, 1989 in Sparta, Wisconsin. Emma was married to William Gibson and they had 5 children.

What I know:

  • Emma spent her entire life in Wisconsin.
  • Prior to her husband’s death, she and her daughters were featured quite often in the “Personals” section in the Wisconin Rapids newspaper

What I don’t know:

  • I don’t have much information about what her life was like after her husband passed. I know that she never remarried and she lived an additional 49 years. It looked like after her husband died, Emma worked at domestic jobs — like dishwasher.
  • I’ve been trying to find a copy of her marriage record to William, but haven’t been able to find one yet.

My ancestors: William McGregor Gibson

William McGregor Gibson is my great grandfather. He was born January 3, 1892 in Trempealeau County, Wisconsin and died February 23, 1940 in Pigeon Falls, Wisconsin (also in Trempealeau County).

What I know:

  • William was married to Emma and they had 5 children.
  • William lived briefly in Minnesota as a child, but spent almost his entire life in Wisconsin.
  • He worked various jobs in Wisconsin, including as a Yard Master in a paper mill
  • He had three sisters

What I would like to know:

  • I would like to find out more information about his World War I service

My ancestors: Kathleen Hale Thierman

ThiermanKathleen Hale Thierman is my great grandmother. She was born Jan 14, 1892 in Iowa and died August 8, 1960 in Oakland, California. She was married to Bevan Berryman and had two children — Richard and Mildred.

What I know:

  • She was born in Iowa, but lived almost her entire life in California. As a child, she lived in Southern California and Northern California.
  • She was very involved in her Methodist Church.
  • She was a bit of a collector and often clipped items (poems, recipes, etc.) out of newspapers. I have a couple of notebooks full of them.


“Oakland Tribune”
August 8, 1960, page 37:

BERRYMAN, Katheline H., in Oakland, August 8, 1960, beloved wife of the late Bevan P. Berryman: loving mother of Richard E. Berryman and Mrs. Mildred I. Richards, both of Oakland; sister of Mrs. Edna M. Dean of Paradise; grandmother of JoAnne, Barbara Lee and Gregg Richard Berryman, and James Donald Richards.  A native of Iowa, a member of the Shattuck Avenue Methodist Church, Oakland. Friends are invited to attend funeral services Wednesday, August 10, at 10 a.m. at Truman’s Chapel, Oakland, Reverend Warren W. Peters officiating. Entombment, Mountain View Mausoleum. Memorials may be sent to the Shattuck Avenue Methodist church, 63rd Street and Shattuck Avenue, Oakland, for forwarding to the Sonoma State Hospital to be used for handicapped children.

My ancestors: Bevan Berryman

ThiermanBevan Puckett Berryman is my great grandfather. He was born April 20, 1891 in Chicago, Illinois and died April 18, 1956 in Alameda, California.

What I know:

  • Bevan was the fourth child for Richard Berryman and the first child for Lizzie Puckett Berryman. His father had been married to Hannah Berryman and had three children with her before marrying Lizzie.
  • He spent most of his early childhood in Chicago, but moved to California as a teenager and lived in California for the rest of his life. He lived in Southern California until the 1930s and then moved to the Bay Area.
  • He had two children — Richard Berryman (my grandfather) and Mildred Irene Berryman Richards.


Oakland Tribune
Friday, April 20, 1956, page 15:
B.P. Berryman Funeral Rites Set Tomorrow
Funeral services will be held tomorrow for Bevan P. Berryman, 65, a 35-year resident of Oakland, who died last Wednesday. A native of Chicago, Illinois, Mr. Berryman was a retired railway clerk, a job he had held for 43 years. He lived at 417 60th Street. He was a member of the Shattuck Avenue Methodist Church and the Retired Railway Mail Association.  Survivors include his wife, Kathleen H.; a son, Richard, of Oakland; a daughter, Mrs. Mildred I. Richards of San Leandro; a brother, Albert of Berkeley, and grandchildren. Services will be at 11:30 a.m. at Truman’s Mortuary. Private committal will follow in Mountain View Cemetery.

My ancestors: Maude Weatherley

Maude Weatherley is my great grandmother. She was born March 4, 1878 in Missouri and died July 9, 1918 in Lone Oak, Oklahoma.

What I know:

  • She was born in Missouri, lived in Arkansas and spent most of her adult life being a farmer’s wife in Oklahoma.
  • She had 9 children.

What I’d like to know:

  • I don’t have a copy of the birth certificate or the death record.

My Ancestors: George Albert Faulkner

George Albert Faulker is my great grandfather. He was born February 22, 1872 in Kentucky and died June 19, 1960 in Metropolis, Illinois. He is buried next to his first wife in Muldrow, Oklahoma.

What I know:

  • George was born in Kentucky and lived in Kentucky through most of his childhood.
  • In his early 20s, he was living in Arkansas.
  • He married Maude Weatherley in 1897 and they had 9 children. After Maude died, he remarried Mabel Claire Britton.
  • He spent quite a bit of his adult life as a farmer in Oklahoma — including living in the Indian Territory of the Cherokee nation.

What I’d like to know:

  • I haven’t been able to find a specific birth record for him. I have his birth date from the marriage index, and I have him listed on the 1880 census. But, I don’t have a birth certificate.
  • I’d like to know why he lived in the Cherokee Nation Indian Territory.
  • I’d like to find a copy of his obituary.

My ancestors: Florence Alabama Warren Gosnell

Florence Alabama Warren Gosnell is my great grandmother. On almost every record she is listed as Allie. She was born February 15, 1876 in Berryville, Arkansas and died May 5, 1953 in Orland, California.

What I know …

  • When Allie was 18, she married Amos William Phillips. They had 13 children together. She never remarried after Amos died and raised several young children on her own.
  • She grew up in Arkansas and moved to Texas and Oklahoma with her husband. In the mid-1930s, she moved to live with one of her children in California. She lived in California until she died in 1953.
  • As her obituary states, when she died she had 41 living grandchildren, 47 great grandchildren and 1 great, great grandchild.

What I’d like to know …

  • There is some information online that Allie was adopted by the Gosnell family and that she may have been Native American. The 1880 census shows Allie living with the Gosnell family as a boarder.


The obituary from the The Orland Register, Orland, Glenn County, California

Thursday, May 7, 1953

Services Friday for Florence Phillips Mrs. Florence Allie Phillips, for the past two years a resident of Orland, died Tuesday at the home of her daughter, Mrs. Lona Tarrant, southwest of Orland. Mrs. Phillips was born February 15, 1876, at Berryville, Arkansas. She is survived by the following children: Mrs. Lona Tarrant and Mrs. Vena DeRosier, both of Orland; Vernon Phillips, Lee Phillips and Amos Phillips, all of Oroville; Joe Phillips, Weed; Mrs. Frances Bramlett, Quincy; Mrs. Velva Ballard, Weed; Ethal W. Phillips, Richmond; Orval Phillips, Milton, Indiana; Mrs. Cena Snyder, Peru, Nebraska; Bert Phillips, Olivehurst; 41 grandchildren, 47 great grandchildren and 1 great great grandchild.

My ancestors: Amos William Phillips

Amos William Phillips was born May 13, 1868 in Orange, Illinois. He died May 23, 1921 in Dibble, Oklahoma.

What I know:

  • Amos made his living as a farmer.
  • He was born in Illinois, but his family moved to Arkansas while he was a child.
  • He lived in Arkansas until his 30s, moved to Texas for a few years and then moved to Oklahoma. He lived in Oklahoma until he died at age 53.
  • He married Florence Alabama Warren Gosnell and they had 13 children.
  • He named his daughter Ethel and his son Ethal. (A fact that very early on confused me when doing research.)
  • He is buried in Dibble Cemetery.

My ancestors: Emma Mae Gibson

American_Legion_Drum_and_Bugle_CorpEmma Mae Gibson was born May 2, 1921 in Wisconsin. She spent most of her childhood in Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin before moving to California in the 1940s. She married Richard Berryman and they had three children — JoAnne, Barbara and Gregg. She died on December 9, 1965.

One of my favorite things is an old suitcase I have that is filled with items that my grandmother kept over the years. After she died, my grandfather hung on to the suitcase and it made its way into my hands.

My grandmother was very active in the Wisconsin Rapids social community in the 1930s and was mentioned in the newspaper several times. She is also featured in a picture in a book “The 100 Years of Pictorial & Descriptive History of Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin”. 

My grandfather loved taking photos and I have literally hundreds of photos of Emma Mae, including some doing very every day activities like ironing on vacation.

I’m grateful that even though I was never able to meet Emma Mae that I have so much information about her.