Saturday, January 7, 2017

Sibling Saturday

Coon Hunting:  Sarah Caroline Coon

The Coon family is an interesting family to research. One never knows what one will discover while researching this family. There have been humorous stories and sad stories along the way. There have been discoveries where I have said, “I can’t believe that.” There seems to be a fantastic paper trail for the Coon family, and there have been several Coon families’ DNA tested. There is so much information online for family history that one could soon get overwhelmed. However, every genealogist knows to take one family at a time. And that is what I learned to do in the early years of researching family. The family unit that I am researching is the matrilineal line. The Edward Zachariah Thomas Coon family. Grandfather Clifton Coon’s parents and siblings. While researching the Edward Zachariah Thomas Coon family unit, I was preparing to research EZT and Jane’s second from the oldest child Sarah Caroline Coon.

Sarah is the second oldest daughter of Edward and Jane. Her oldest sister and the oldest child of Edward and Jane, Martha Sophrona died in 1914 at the age of forty-four. Their mother Jane also died at a young age of thirty-four years old; most likely at the birth of the last child Edward M. Sarah is also the sister of Berkley, Harris C. Cephus, and Edward M. Coon. You can read Berkley, Harris C. and Cephus’ stories here. Research for Edward M. is ongoing. He seems to have vanished after the 1930 census in West Carroll Parish; however, I am on his trail and he will be found, it just will take a bit more of my time.

Sarah Caroline married at a very young age of sixteen to James W. Lentz. Now, it depends on which family tree or census you look at as to Sarah’s husband’s name – Lutze, Lucas, Lentze, or Lentz. His given name was James W. Lentz per the 1900 and Lentze per the 1910 Lincoln County, Mississippi censuses. After analyzing the handwriting and comparing the middle initial and the surname with other letters of similar handwriting, I determined his name is James W. Lentz. Could his given name be William S. Lutze or Lucas as shown on online family trees? On the 1910 Lincoln County census Caroline’s spouse is listed as William Lentze. Again, after carefully and methodically studying the handwriting in the census I concluded his surname was Lentze; and in this spelling with the e was added by the census taker; and his middle initial on the 1900 census was W.; therefore, the conclusion is James William Lentz is the spouse of Sarah Caroline Coon.

This is the reason it is so very important that names be analyzed carefully and all spelling variations are considered when researching a family. There are too many conflicting names for her spouse on family trees to know which name is his name; however, I am going with the name on the 1900 census until I find a marriage record to prove or disprove that information. When I looked at the name on the 1900 and 1910 censuses I looked at the census takers handwriting in other letters of names on the census and made a comparison of the letters to determine how the census taker (enumerator) wrote a letter. Once I was confident it was the same letter, then I concluded, the spouse’s name was James William Lentz.

One fact that I know is that Sarah Caroline Coon is the daughter of Edward Zachariah Thomas Coon and his wife Jane Mason Coon; and the oldest sister of Clifton Coon. Clifton was living with his sister in 1900 after the death of their mother Jane. Clifton was eighteen years old at that time. Clifton and his wife Mary L. and children are living next door to Sarah and her family at the time the 1910 census was taken.

Sarah was born in Brookhaven in Lincoln County, Mississippi and she died 29 September 1911 where she grew up in Brookhaven. She was a young thirty-seven years old at the time of her death. She was the mother of nine children: Emma, Mary J. Chauncy, Minnie, Mandy, Ruby, Johnny S. Edna, and May. Her place of burial is unknown now; but research is ongoing.

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