by: Madeleine Putnam Melo
Ida May Clough born Dec 1854 (from death certificate, which also states she was born in California) was not found in the 1855 New York census with her brother and grandparents. In 1860 she is in the California Amador County census with Almira Surface, This US census states Ida was born in Illinois (I have yet to connect Almira to the Cloughs). I could not find her father in the 1860 US Census and her mother has remarried an Ira Blossom, and is found living in Scotsburg, CA with no children listed.
In the 1870 census she should be 16, I am not sure where she is. Her father Orson (47) is in Amador Co. with Abner Clough (63) and Abner’s wife Caroline (61) No Ida. Her mother now Julia Blossom is with Ira, and their Blossom children, no Ida.
There is an Ida Clough with A.H. (born in NY.) and Ella Clough family in Stockton, CA census for 1870. This Ida listed as 14 (close enough for a census) and born in Ca. Other youngsters in this household are a Fred (12) born in Wis or Mis? And a Geo. (10) born in Wis or Mis? And Arthur (6) born in Ca. Is this my Ida, is A. H. Clough an uncle, cousin?
In 1880 Ida Bryant (25) is listed with three children Clarence Bryant (7), Allace (5) and Maud (3) in the same household are Orson Clough(53) b. NY and Jenna Clough (37) and Kate Herbert, William Herbert, Nella Herbert ( I was to learn the Herberts were children from Jenna’s first marriage) and Orson and Jenna’s children Hilda Clough, Libba Clough and Amy Clough. Wow, so Orson had remarried between 1870 and 1880 and had not only 3 more of his own children, but 3 step children and Ida was there with three Bryant children. WOW!
(click on image to enlarge)
Shortly after the 1880 census, on Dec 30, 1880 Ida May married my great grandfather Joseph Fletcher Putnam. They had three children, my grandpa Ike, my great aunt Lena and my great aunt Blanche. So now I understand that all those Bryants and their descendants are my half/cousins. WOW!
Joseph Putnam and Ida May divorced. I have never found the date. Clues are that my great Aunt Blanche, youngest child of Joseph & Ida was born in 1888.
There is no 1890 census to follow. Darn! Joseph is listed in the voter’s registration for Kawaeh, Tulare Co. in 1890 and I know that they homesteaded property near Ida’s mother Julia and Ida’s stepfather Ira Blossom. So I assume they are still together in 1890. We have this family picture of Ida May on horseback in front of a giant sequoia in Sequoia National Park, not far from their ranch.
I also know that Ida May’s father Orson dies in 1897. I have been able to follow Orson’s extended family the Cloughs by Jenna and Jenna’ Herbert children, but that is another story.
By 1900 Ida May married Charles Peters and is living in Fresno Ca., no children are with them. Her Putnam children are found with their father Joseph in the 1900 census living in Alameda Co. Ida and Charles Peters had no children.
The 1900 census included some more detailed info. For Ida born: Dec 1854, age:45, born: California, father born: New York, Mother born Ohio.
Ohio?! Julia Marsh is born in Ohio? What is she doing in New York with the Clough in 1850 at the age of 18 and that census says Julia is born in Vermont?! Hmmmm!
Back to Ida. Of note in the 1900 census is also listed Charles Bryant, Ida son from her first marriage his birth is listed as 1872 in Cal. (Ida would have been 18 years old).
My older sister has a post card written by Ida after marriage to Peters from a mining town in Idaho. So I know they lived there part of the time. I assume Charles Peter’s was mining.
My great- grandmother Ida May lived in Los Angles before her death in February 1932. I know that my great aunts and my grandfather went to Los Angles from Visalia frequently to visit with her. Travel was fairly easy by train in the early 1900s.
I have long had a fascination with this great grandmother. Where was she born? Most records say California. I have read so many stories about early California and mining history I can only imagine the hardships of giving birth in such rugged circumstances. Ida May seems never to have had a stable relationship as a young girl with her mother or father. Of interest, which you will see in my next blog about her grandfather Benjamin Clough, is that Ida May does have an Illinois connection. Her Uncle Benjamin Clough had moved from Eire, New York to Will county Illinois. Benjamin and Lydia (Ida May’s grandparents) have also moved there by 1860. Later research showed not Julia Marsh but other Marsh names in same census with the Cloughs. The Marsh line has yet to be extensively research by me, but it adds to the possibility that Ida May was born in Illinois, but for now I am sticking to the California birth as fact.