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The Chalmers Family
Some time ago we received the following letter. Below that is
the culmination of our research.

    Gen Search,

    I have a request I would like you to look into. My great-grandfather was
    George Chalmers. I know he lived in Miami county, Ohio in the mid-
    1800s and had a wife by the name of Lucinda. They had a daughter by
    the name of Callie who was my grandmother. I believe George was
    born in the mid-1830s but I don’t know where. I don’t know anything
    about Lucinda. I would like you to see what you can find out about his
    family – Lucinda and the children. Thank you.


The family of George Freeman Chalmers Sr. is certainly an interesting one. We were given a few details and asked
to find the rest. While we succeeded in finding quite a bit of information about his family there are a few key data
points we were not able to find in the prescribed time.

We know George Sr. was born sometime between 1832 and 1836 but we still don’t know where. According to a
number of sources he could have been born in Ohio, Alabama or Florida. Without further research we simply could
not determine which. This will take concerted effort and probably quite some time to trace. He passed in 1875.

He married Lucinda Washburn on 17 Nov 1856 in Miami County, Ohio and we were able to trace her data much
easier, which is rather unusual as the man is generally easier to trace, but obviously not always. She was born
about the same time as her husband but outlived him by about eighteen years, passing in 1892.

By this union we know of seven children, all of whom were born in Miami county, Ohio:

  • Eva, born about 1857 or ’58 and married Rodney W. King;
  • Callie, born about 1858 or ’59 and married William H. Weldy;
  • Emma, born about 1861;
  • George Jr., born about 1865 and married Caroline B. “Callie” Morelock;
  • Edward, born about 1870 and married Isabell M. Berline and then Elizabeth B. Johnston;
  • Cameron, born 1873;
  • Ella May, born about 1875 and married Charles M. Shaffer.

Early birth dates are often problematic as the available records rarely match one another. One likely reason is that
it just was not as important then as it is now for identification purposes. There are quite a few notes on the
group sheet which may be consulted for further information.

There are two interesting subtexts regarding this family. The first is that Emma was
adjudicated insane on 25 Jul
1892 and committed to the
Dayton State Hospital for the Insane. She died of dysentery in December of that year.
The hospital has since closed and been converted into a senior living facility. The probate court case is still
available from the Clerk of Courts in Miami County. Hospital records may yet be available which cover the time
Emma was in the hospital. Both of these may shed some light on a life tragically cut short.

The second is that Cameron had some
run-ins with the local authorities in the early- to mid-1890s for
drunkenness and burglary. The last information we have of him is his attendance at
a party in 1897. After this, the
trail goes cold. Perhaps the troubles his sister faced were more than he could bear. At any rate, further research
should be able to locate more information.
A short history of the George Freeman Chalmers Family
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