Thursday, September 18, 2008

Lou Ella Godwin Otten (1882-1947), Part III

In Part I of my series, “Who was Louella Otten?” I presented 3 sets of documents that outlined the history of my 2nd great grandmother, Louella Otten.
1. Marriage record from Sharp Co., AR: Ella DAVIS married Alvin GODWIN, 1899
2. 1900 Sharp Co., AR census report: Lou A CARPENTER, daughter of Wm CARPENTER (step-sister Osieola DAVIS, daughter of Wm CARPENTER’s second wife, Dora NIX DAVIS, was also enumerated)
3. Obituary of Ella Otten: survivors included 3 CARPENTER brothers – Marlin, Ernest, and Willie; one half-sister, Nellie CARPENTER ECKERT, and one sister, Osieola DAVIS CLARK.
These sources put together indicate that Lou Ella was either a DAVIS or a CARPENTER. At first I thought she was a Carpenter because that is what the census report indicated and I have a bad habit of putting lots of stock in what census reports say. I learned my lesson this time.
I received a copy of Ella Otten’s death certificated obtained from the OK Department of Health this week. It clearly states that Ella’s father was Bill DAVIS and her mother was Dora NIX.

So lessons learned: Don’t believe everything you read!
Lou Ella Davis was the daughter of Dora Nix who married first Bill Davis and second William Carpenter in Sharp Co., AR in 1890.  Dora Nix Davis Carpenter was enumerated with her daughters, Lou Ella Davis and Oseola Davis in her new husband, William Carpenter's household in the 1900 Highland Township, Sharp Co., AR census report (Lou Ella was actually already married and enumerated with husband Alvin Godwin by this time as well). The Carpenter boys also listed on the census report were Lou Ella and Osceola's half-brothers. I believe the obituary was incorrect - the brothers were actually half brothers. 

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