52 Ancestors #36: Vincent Lucey

100 years ago today, my grandfather Vincent John Lucey was born in Rochester, New Hampshire, the fifth child of James and Mary (O’Brien) Lucey. He spent the first few weeks of his life in a makeshift incubator, a shoebox on a radiator, due to his size. He didn’t get much bigger, as an adult he was only 5’5″ tall.


Vinny circa 1917, York Beach Maine

He attended Rochester High School and played on the football team, graduated in 1932.

Rochester High Football, 1931-32. Vinny on the far left, front row

Rochester High Football, 1931-32. Vinny on the far left, front row


High School picture

High School picture, 1930-32

On 28 November, 1936, Vinny married Doris Bowen, whom he met a year or so before while working at Winkley’s Market, a local grocer.

Circa 1936

Circa 1936

They had two children in Rochester and lived there until the mid-40’s, when they moved to 28 Bridge St in Saugus, Massachusetts. He worked for Gibbs Oil as a driver and yard foreman for many years. I used to get Hess Trucks every year for Christmas, one of my favorite toys.

Scanned Photo-8-1_edited

An avid fisherman, Vinny owned a boat that he kept in the Saugus River for quick access to the Atlantic

He and my grandmother traveled extensively around New England and eastern Canada, as evidenced by a tremendous swizzle-stick collection that I’m proud to own.

Vinny about to enjoy a Canadian Club after a very long drive to some random hotel in New England

Vinny about to enjoy a Canadian Club and soda after a very long drive to some random, beautifully decorated hotel in New England

In 1976, my family celebrated Vinny’s 62nd birthday at his house, he had been ill and was about to retire and I’m sure was looking forward to spending time fishing and traveling. When we walked into our house after the short ride home, the phone was ringing. It was my grandmother, Vinny had collapsed. He was rushed to the hospital but never regained consciousness.

This post is 36th in the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks challenge series.

52 Ancestors #35: G.A.R. Member James Lucey

My 3rd great-grandfather James E. Lucey was very proud of his Civil War service. He joined the Grand Army of the Republic in Rochester, NH and participated in parades and other events, such as the one captured in this photo. The only details on the picture are “Rochester Common, G.A.R. 1928, Jim Lucey”

1928 Rochester Commons, Rochester NH G.A.R. Ceremony. James Lucey on the far right

1928 Rochester Commons, Rochester NH G.A.R. Ceremony. James Lucey on the far right

For more information about the Grand Army of the Republic, visit the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War website

This post is 35th in the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks challenge series.

52 Ancestors #34: Anna (Lucey) Stevens

This is one of my favorite family pictures because it reminds me of early fall, the grass is long and it’s ‘sweater weather’, my favorite time of year.

The three women in this picture are my great-grand aunts, sisters of my great-grandfather James Edward Lucey: Agnes, Anna and Margaret.

circa 1910

circa 1910, probably at the Lucey house 66 Church St, Gonic, NH

Anna Theresa Lucey was born 7 July 1883 in Rochester, NH to James and Johanna (Donoghue) Lucey, the fifth child and second daughter. She married Percy Wilder Stevens in 1923. They had one son, Robert, later in 1923 and lived at 57 Silver St in Dover, NH until Percy’s untimely death. He had a pulmonary embolism and died on 20 March 1937 at age 48.

Anna and Bobby moved into the Lucey house in Gonic and she worked as a bookkeeper at Kendall Insurance in Rochester. A cousin remembers her as a devout Catholic; coming home from work on the bus, having a small meal and going up to her room to pray for the evening. She never remarried and lived in Gonic until she died 16 November 1972 at age 89.

This post is 34th in the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks challenge series.

52 Ancestors #33: Martha (Cole) Odell

I love these two pictures of my 3rd great-grandmother Martha (Cole) Odell. In the first she looks annoyed while her granddaughters goof around and pose, but in the second I think her true self comes through. In light of the second picture, I wonder if the look in the first is one of faux-annoyance and she was goofing around just as much as they were, we just can’t see the eye-roll in a still picture.


Martha (Cole) Odell with granddaughter Ethel Drake (1908-1974) and great-granddaughter Gladys May Hotchkiss (1902-1984) circa 1918

I’m not exactly sure of the date these pictures were taken, but there are a few more taken that same day in the same place of Martha’s daughter Susan and husband Julius Henry Frost (my 2nd great-grandparents). I estimate 1918 based on the ages of all the people across the photos. In 1918 Martha would have been 80, so perhaps the family had gathered to celebrate her birthday?

Martha Cole

Martha was born about 1838 in New York, one of eight children born to John and Hester Sophia (Martinez) Coles. At some point between 1840 and 1843, the family moved to Newark where Martha met Reuben Odell. They married 10 August 1856 in Newark and had eight children.

Martha died on Christmas day, 1921 and is buried in the family plot, Fairmont Cemetery, Newark.

This post is 33rd in the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks challenge series.

52 Ancestors #32: Paratrooper Doug Frost

My grandfather and his three younger brothers all served in the military during the World War II era. The youngest brother, Douglas Kingsley Frost, was an Army paratrooper that enlisted in January of 1944.

Douglas Frost 1944

Douglas Frost 1944

DougFrost1944 1_

Everett, Massachusetts newspaper article 1944

Doug was born in Brooklyn, NY, 21 October 1925. He was married twice, first to Ruthie (unknown maiden name) with whom he had one son, David Duane, born in 1960. In 1976, David died in Miami at just 15 years old. Doug married his second wife, Dorothy [she went by Jody] (Rouleau) on 28 July 1973 in Miami. On Halloween, 1978 Doug died in his sleep probably due to a heart-related issue, he was 53 years old.

This post is 32nd in the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks challenge series.