A family legend that I believe is true: Our grandfather, Edward Daniel Hogan, was born on Leap Day. Our grandmother, Anne O'Malley, was born in 1898, and hearing that I always figured Ed must have been born in 1896 or 1892. But having seen his grave, finally, and having found him in the census, I see the real date was 1888.
In 1930, he was listed as a bank auditor, probably at the First National Bank of Chicago; our stern grandmother is listed unsoberly as "Annie," and her occupation is clear from the presence of three children in the downstairs flat at 8332 South May Street: our mom, who was just four months old the day the census enumerator visited, and her brothers Bill -- three years old -- and John, who was two. Upstairs were Ed's parents, Timothy J. (listed as "freight clerk-railroad"); Annie, his wife, who was actually named Anniestacia; and Ed's sisters, Catherine and Betty. Catherine was 30 and her occupation is listed as "stenographer-abbatoir"; I've always heard she worked for Armour--you know, the meat company--but this is the first I've heard that stenographers worked in abbatoirs. Betty is listed as an office clerk at a bank, and I don't know which one.
It's always a little thrilling and a little strange to encounter family characters in a setting like this. Some of them we've only heard about. We never knew Mom's dad and granddad or her brother John -- they died long before we came along. But I do have memories of his mother, Annie, who still lived in that upstairs flat when we were very young. And much clearer memories of the rest of them.
Ed, though--today is the twenty-ninth passing of his actual birth date. I think. If he were in any position to appreciate it, I'd tell him happy birthday.
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