We've talked a little about Henry and Angeline Leatherman but what about Minnie Wood's parents? We know that William S. Wood was a confectioner in Buffalo. Census records conflict as to whether he was born "at sea" or in Buffalo, but we know he was born in 1850. We don't know his parents' names.
Elizabeth Granger (Bessie) was the daughter of Elizabeth and Stephen Granger. They emigrated to the U.S. from England around 1836 or 1856 (still to be determined). On the 1870 census, her mother described herself as a "huckster" and her father "a boatmaker." It appears Bessie had a twin brother, Stephen, and two other siblings, James and Mary (although Mary only shows up in one document). She was born in 1829 in England.
City Directory data indicates and Elizabeth Granger working in a confectionery company in Buffalo, but it is unclear as to whether or not it was Bessie or her mother. It is probably through this avenue that she met William S. Wood.
They were married in _____. And, from this clipping it sounds as though their wedding reception was lovely!
The Woods had moved to Lansing by 1905 (City Directory) and while in Lansing he first worked at Lansing Confectionery Company.
They later owned grocery stores.
They lived in the house at 833 N. Capitol for at least two years before Minnie and J.P. were married.
Iris recalls a "grandmother or someone" living with them when she was quite young. This would be Bessie.
We know that William died in 1917 and is buried in Mt. Hope Cemetery in Lansing. When Jean and Jeanie would decorate the cemetery graves, stories about his confectionery work were always part of the day. Jeanie has his recipe book -- but that's the subject of another post.
We don't know when Bessie died. A photo of her holding Jean as a baby was taken in 1919. The only Elizabeth Wood in Mt. Hope cemetery died in 1905 so either it isn't her or the dates were badly mangled. She is not in the same plot as William and their son, Irving -- so her demise is (at present) a mystery.
One of the things you discover when you start digging into all this is the difficulty of finding people from England. Yes, you can search the Great Britain and Wales census and birth records. But good luck narrowing down the names of Wood and Granger! Especially if you aren't quite certain from which part of England they hailed. We know Elizabeth Granger (Bessie's mom) was born in Wales from U.S. census data -- but we don't have a maiden name to be able to search Welsh birth records!
So, the mystery of the Wood family will continue. Stay tuned!