The Fay Family: Horace Fay 1839

Horace Fay (11/19/1839 - 11/4/1904)
And his Descendants
John Fay
David (OPF #6) (4/23/1679-4/10/1738) son of John and Susanna Shattuck
Aaron (OPF #10) (4/18/1719 - 1/4/1798) son of David and Sarah Larkin
Nathan (OPF #110) (2/6/1747 - 2/23/1831) son of Aaron and Thankful Newton
Edmund (OPF #377) (9/18/1778 - 9/1/1827) son of Nathan and Lucy Bemis
William (OPF #1214) (7/2/1805 - 7/16/1871) son of Edmund and Levina Harrington
Horace (OPF p. 283) (11/19/1839 - 11/4/1904) son of William and Miriam Newton
Horace Fay 1839: background and overview
Horace Fay 1839: Biography
Horace Daniel Fay 1894: Autobiography
Norman Daniel Fay 1922: Biography
Norman Daniel Fay 1922: Obituary
Walter True Fay 1925: Biography
Charles Alan Fay 1934: Biography
Research into this line began when I received two family sheets with biographies from C. J. Blomquist at the Upton Historical Society. The family group started with Horace Fay who married Adelaide M. in time for a son to be born in April 1894. It was a relatively simple matter to find a record of that marriage in NEHGS; that record is reproduced below.
This record contains a lot of information. Adelaide's maiden name was Hammond. She was 33, Horace was 53, making him 20 years older and born about 1841. This was Horace's second marriage. Horace's parents were William and Maria Newton; he was born in Southborough. This information made it easy to find Horace in Orlin. Orlin gives Horace's exact birthdate and records his marriage to Ellen M. Holmes, but has no knowledge of Horace's second marriage, probably because it occurred so late.
NEHGS had also had information on Horace's first marriage on April 4, 1860.
Horace is 20, his actual age. Mary Ellen Williams is 19. It is the first marriage for both of them. Horace is a watchmaker and jeweler. The problem is that Orlin has the name of Horace's first wife as Ellen M. Holmes. There is no difficulty with "Mary Ellen" in contrast to "Ellen M." First names and middle names were often interchanged. But Orlin's Holmes and NEHGS Williams cannot be so easily explained. Could this be Mary Ellen's second marriage and was her maiden name Holmes? But the record says this was her first marriage. We know the names of their children; NEHGS has the birth records for all five, as well as the marriage record for Fred, and the death certificates for Ida, Emma and George. These records deepen the mystery. Mary Ellen or Ellen Mary or Ellen M. (all three versions are used at various times) is said to have the maiden name WILLIAMS on the birth records of Ida, Emma, and Fred, and on the death certificates of Ida and Emma. She is said to have the maiden name of HOLMES in Orlin, on the birth certificate of Carrie and on Fred's marriage certificate. George's birth certificate does not show any maiden name, just "Ellen M." I thought for a while that Orlin simply assumed that William's wife's first daughter was Ellen Holmes, and further assumed that Horace married Ellen Holmes, daughter of Aurilla Holmes, William's third wife. But that was before I found clear evidence in NEHGS records that indeed she was associated with both last names, HOLMES and WILLIAMS. Fred (Fredrick) was born to Mary E. m.n. Williams, and has Ellen M (Holmes) on his marriage certificate! Mary Ellen's own marriage certificate gives the names of her parents as Ira and Caroline Williams -- not Arvilla Holmes and not Arvilla Williams, which was my first thought.
One more puzzle is connected with the third marriage of William to Arvilla Holmes in 1858. It was her second marriage; she is called "Mrs. Arvilla Holmes"--but her father and mother are George and Mary Holmes. This would SEEM to indicate that she was divorced and took back her maiden name. this could explain why Mary Ellen sometimes is called "Williams" if that were the married name of Arvilla; but that is in direct contradiction to the parents listed on the certificate. Unless, of course, Arvilla's full name was Arvilla Caroline Holmes, and she became Caroline Williams for the period of her marriage.
And that is what I think happened.
  • Arvilla Holmes was born to George and Mary Holmes about 1814 in Jefferson NY (source her marriage certificate)
  • 1840 Caroline Holmes and Ira H. Williams were married in Lowell on April 5, 1840
  • Mary Ellen Williams was born to Caroline and Ira Williams about 1841
  • Before 1850, Caroline Holmes and Ira Williams were divorced (inference; only way to explain the name change)
  • 1850: Arvilla Holmes and Mary E. Holmes are living in Shrewsbury, MA. (census)
  • Arvilla was married to William in Shrewsbury on July 4, 1858.
  • 1860: William and Arvilla are living in Shrewsbury; with them is Mary E. Holmes and three of William's sons including Horace. (census)
  • Horace and Mary Ellen Williams were married in Shrewsbury on April 5, 1860
In 1860, William's household contains Arvilla and her daughter, plus three of his sons and a daughter. The census was taken in June 1860; Horace was married in April according to Shrewsbury records. The census shows Mary Ellen under her maiden name.
Horace and Mary Ellen had five children; three died in infancy. Son Fred married in 1894. He and Albertine had no children; they both are still living in 1930, and they have an adopted daughter Alberta, age 39 and born in Rhode Island. Alberta was not living with them in 1920.
The remaining child, Carrie, appears in the census of 1880 as an eleven year old still in school. According to Horace Daniel, she married Harry Flint, and had two children with him. By 1900 they are divorced.
Horace and Adelaide had two children; we have the records for Horace Daniel from Upton. Herbert seems not to have married. In 1930 he and his widowed mother Addie are living in Upton.
Descendants of Horace Fay
(7th Generation)
Contributed and Researched
8  Ida Fay  b: 1/30/1861  d: 8/20/1861
8  Emma Isabel Fay  b: 8/24/1863  d: 3/3/1864
8  Fred Angelo Fay  b: 1/8/1866
...+Albertina Levesgrie  b: 1862  m: 5/16/1894
.....9  Alberta  b: 1891 (adopted)
8  Carrie Fay  b: 2/20/1869
...+Harry D. Flint  b: 3/1865
.....9  Leon Horace Flint  b: 12/21/1887
........+Rose A.  b: 1887
..........10  Juliette V. Flint  b: 1907
..............+George A. Delano
................11  George A. Delano Jr. b: 1/6/1928 d: 2/23/1990
.....9  Allie May Flint
8  George I. Fay  b: 4/1/1875  d: 10/1/1875
8  Horace Daniel Fay  b: 4/14/1894  d: 4/1971
...+Annie True  b: 1894  m: 7/10/1921
.....9  Norman Daniel Fay  b: 10/14/1922  d: 5/11/1992
........+Louisa Elizabeth Brown  m: 1/1/1944
..........10  William Daniel Fay  b: 12/5/1946  d: 12/9/1946
..........10  Cheryl Kathryn Fay  b: 2/17/1948
..........10  Steven Dennis Fay  b: 8/20/1949
..........10  Warren Patrick Fay  b: 7/30/1951
..........10  Willen Kevin Fay  b: 3/29/1954
.....9  Walter True Fay  b: 11/4/1925
.....9  Charles Alan Fay  b: 2/12/1934
8  Herbert S. Fay  b: 1/11/1897