|Bessie Mae Eargle Price (1884-1943)|
I was thrilled when the census was finally searchable and I could just plug in her name and see what I could find. What I found was a great example of how census records could be misleading or have completely wrong information and how important it is,whenever possible, to look at the original record.
At first I thought I once again was going to hit a dead end. Looking on the search results the only Bessie Price I could find was a married woman with a husband named Frank.
Now I knew that Bessie had been widowed (actually her husband "disappeared" in the early 1920's-but that's a future blog post!) and that she was most likely living with one of her sons. Then it hit me! Bessie had a SON named Frank. Could this be the right family with the wrong relationships listed? Could it have been a indexing error?
Could this newly written in information be the correct information and not my family? I don't believe so. I have the address where Bessie would have been living from a couple of different sources. This address on Wilson Blvd where Bessie and Frank are living is the correct one. The crossed out information fits the family in 1940. Even the occupation for Frank Price as a Textile Worker for a Cotton Mill is in line with what is known about the family..
Finding Bessie in the 1940 Census reinforced two important principles.
1 The census is not always right or recorded correctly.
2 .Always check the original source. In this case I was able to view the original in digital format on the web.
|Frank Price (on right) with brother George and sister Beulah|
Finally I had found Bessie Mae Eargle Price in the 1940 Census! Now to figure out what really happened to her husband Campbell Bertrand Price ( 27 July 1876-1922?). Did he run away with the family fortune, die in a storm and his body never found, or, as another family story goes, did he get beaten and robbed for the money he was carrying with him and never seen again? Only time and research will tell!