Stories of the ancestors of Dan Babish and Irene Stoppiello

Friday, March 7, 2014

A Packed Wedding Announcement

Many times wedding notices in nineteenth century newspapers were simple.  "Mr. Jones wed Miss Smith, daughter of Mr. Smith, last Thursday at the Smith home."  They provide a small, yet important, amount of genealogical information.  Sometimes, however, a great deal of information can be contained in a wedding announcement.  Consider the following article from the Sunday, December 3rd, 1893, edition of the Brooklyn Eagle. [1]

The bride, Frances H. Cargain, was Irene's first cousin three times removed, not a direct ancestor.  Yet Frances' wedding announcement provides an important view into the family of Irene's third great grandparents, Cornelius M. Currey and Mary Hannah (Conklin) Currey.

Of the eleven children reported to have been born to Cornelius M. and Mary Hannah (Conklin) Currey, seven were alive in 1893 [2].  Three had died in infancy and one, Sarah Currey, had died in 1885 at the age of thirty four.[3]  Six of the seven living Currey offspring attended the wedding  according to the newspaper account: Phebe , Amy Frances (Mrs. Joseph G. Hull), Isaac Conklin, Richard Channing Moore, Mary Elizabeth (Mrs. Henry H. Cargain), and Jotham Sherwood.

The bride's mother, Mary Elizabeth (Currey) Cargain, was a widow in 1893.  Her husband, Henry, had died in 1889.[4]  Youngest daughter May, eighteen, was the maid of honor.  Her sister, Emma, twenty one, was a bridesmaid.

Irene's 2nd great grandfather, Richard Channing Moore Currey; his wife, Matilda "Tillie" (Hammond) Currey (Mr. and Mrs. R. C. M. Currey); and their three children were there.  Henry Channing (Harry) Currey, Irene's great grandfather, was eighteen.  Sarah (Sadie) Currey was thirteen and had the honor of participating in the ceremony by forming an aisle of white ribbon with her cousins, Harry and Jessie Hull.  Josephine A. H. (Josie) Currey was eleven months old having been born the previous December. [5]

The wedding was at the home of Jotham Sherwood Currey (Mr. and Mrs. J. S. Currey).  Daughter Nettie, twenty three, was a bridesmaid.  Son Cornelius, twenty, was an usher.  Son Jotham S. (J. Currey, Jr.) was seventeen.

Phebe Currey (Miss Phebe Currey), who was unmarried, attended.

Amy Frances (Currey) Hull and her husband, Joseph Gardiner Hull (Mr. and Mrs. J. G. Hull) and their three children attended. Daughter Annie C. (Hull) Landis attended with her husband, Thomas (Mr. and Mrs. Landis).  Son Harry, twelve, and daughter Jessie, ten, assisted cousin Sadie Currey as mentioned above.

Widower Isaac Conklin Currey and his six year old son, Walter, were there.  Isaac's wife Lena (Belline Jonassohn) Currey had just died in February of 1893. [6]

The only living Currey sibling not mentioned specifically was Rebecca (Currey) Bodden.  The announcement does state that a Mr. and Mrs. Bolden attended, so perhaps all the Curreys were in attendance, but the spelling difference makes that uncertain.

The highly informative wedding announcement in the Brooklyn Eagle provides a glimpse into the lives of a large extended family of brothers and sisters and their children.  It shows that the family members kept in touch with one another and were close enough that many of the cousins participated in the wedding ceremony itself.  One can only hope that some of the photographs that were undoubtedly taken that day have survived and will surface.

[1] "Wyeth-Cargain", Walter Wyeth - Frances H. Cargain marriage announcement; 3 December 1893, p. 2, col. 6; accessed 23 February 2014, Brooklyn Eagle, Brooklyn, New York, online archive ( (Brooklyn Daily Eagle 1841-1902 online)).

[2] Philip Field Horne, The Currey Family in the Hudson Highlands:  Descendants of Richard Currey of Peekskill Hollow, New York (Pleasantville, New York:  The Higham Press (privately published), 1970), Cornelius M. Currey and Mary Hannah Conklin children, pp. 29-30.

[3] "Died", Sarah Curry death notice; 21 February 1885, p. 3, col. 7; accessed 23 November 2012, Peekskill Highland Democrat, Peekskill, New York, online images (

[3] "Died"...CARGAIN; Henry H. Cargain death notice; p. 1; accessed 21 November 2012, New York Herald (The) [genealogybank], New York, New York, online images (Historical Newspapers (1690 - 2007),

[4] FamilySearch (, New Jersey Births and Christenings, 1660-1980," database (Index entries derived from digital copies of originals housed in various repositories throughout New Jersey, ), Josephine A. H. Currey birth, 20 December 1892; FHL film no. 494222.

[5] "Deaths...CURRY"; Lena Curry death notice, p. 1, col. 2; accessed 21 February 2012, New York Herald (The) [genealogybank], New York, New York, online images (Historical Newspapers (1690 - 2007),

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