Yesterday morning before going to work I wanted to look for at least one. My Paternal second great grandmother, Mary McGee O'Donnell. I had narrowed down when I thought she had died by census records and directory listings. I figured it was between 1914 and 1920. So I looked on the index and found 3 Mary O'Donnell's that died in that time period in Hazleton and Luzerne County. One in 1914 and the other 2 in 1915. So I let that one wait for the Ancestry release because I did not want to order all three knowing that hopefully only one would be the right one. Well the first one I found was the right one. I saw the informant was Mrs Andrew McKelvey and I knew it was right. That was her daughter Mary's married name. Unfortunately it only gave me her father's name and not her mother's and of course only that she came from Ireland, not the place in Ireland! I was so excited that I posted it on Face Book real fast. The citation for Mary's certificate is:
Ancestry.com. Pennsylvania, Death Certificates, 1906-1924 [database on-line]. No. 48964 (stamped), Mary O'Donnell entry, died 8 May 1914, digital image: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2014. accessed 18 April 2014;
Then I thought, I have time to look up another one before I go. So I looked for Mary's grandson, my Great Uncle, Manus O'Donnell. I had the family story that he had been killed in a mining accident and I had a date from the records at Saint Gabriel's Church in Hazleton of when a Manus O'Donnell died. When I looked in the index I only found one Manus O'Donnell and the date was a couple of days off so I had saved it. I found it right away and as soon as I saw his parent's names I knew it was right. Well both the indexer and the person who wrote the certificate had a problem spelling his father's name, Cornelius, but I knew it was correct. He was 21 years old and died from a skull fracture received in a mining accident! The citation for Manus' certificate is:
Ancestry.com. Pennsylvania, Death Certificates, 1906-1924 [database on-line]. No. 97700 (stamped), Manus O'Donnell entry, died 15 Oct 1914, digital image: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2014. accessed 18 April 2014;
So today I wanted to see if I could find one of the three children that I figured out that Cornelius and his wife Cecilia had lost. The first two were before 1900 so they will not be in there, but the third was before 1910. So I just put in the O'Donnell surname to see where it would take me. I figured it was dangerous because O'Donnell is one of those names that is like the Irish version of Smith, well over 6,000 records came up. I had to go through a few pages but I found Marguerte O'Donnell. She was 6 months old when she died 1 August 1908, from Infant Cholera. The citation for Marguerte is:
Ancestry.com. Pennsylvania, Death Certificates, 1906-1924 [database on-line]. No. 76226 (stamped), Marguerte O'Donnell entry, died 1 Aug 1908, digital image: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2014. accessed 19 April 2014
So I still have the VanBilliard's, the Fitzpatrick's and some others, but off to a good start!