A Rose by Any Other Name…

It an be a challenge sometimes to decide the name which one should use to refer to a relative.

Emmar Sargent was born in Ontario, Canada, in the 1830s. By the time died died in Iowa in the 1920s, she had been married six times. Divorced three times, she was also widowed. The time line is a little fuzzy as to whether her marriage to the subsequent husband was before or after her immediately previous husband died.

It seems a little cumbersome to refer to her as Emmar (Sargent) Pollard Ross Oades Pollard Snavely Osenbaugh. That technically is the ordering of the names and Pollard does need to be in there twice even though the man is the same. While Emmar had children with her first and second husband, there are no living descendants of her relationship with her second husband. When writing about Emmar, I’ve had to try and decide what name to use.

I’ve decided in any writing about Emmar, I’m going to use Emmar (Sargent) Osenbaugh. Not because the other marriages are not important, but simply because the entire name is a little unwieldy. She was Osenbaugh for the longest time and it’s the name she was using when she died and what appears on her tombstone. Any reference to her in a document where she is not Emmar Osenbaugh will need a short reference as to why she is listed with that other name–the 1860 census, the 1870 census, city directories in Lincoln, Nebraska, etc. That discussion is probably a good thing given her extensive marital history–it will make it  clear to the reader and keep me on my genealogical toes.


One thought on “A Rose by Any Other Name…

  1. I had to find and follow my gr-grandmother through 5 marriages, legal or common-law, since I have not found all the marriage records. Such fun! Finally found out where she died and when, but have never found her burial place, altho. I have gone through the 14+ cemetery books for the county, plus drove there and found the sexton of the cemetery where I thought she might be, since a lot of people with the surname of her last husband were buried there. Also contacted the funeral home who took over the records of the funeral home who were named on her death record. They stated that there was no burial place recorded. So, she probably is buried somewhere in an unmarked grave. Possibly buried with her 3rd husband (maybe he is her 2nd, since I do not know if she was married to the man who fathered her 1st child), but I do not know where he is buried either. I know where his 1st wife is buried, but as far as I know, he is not there, at least with tombstone readings. And the hunt continues….

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