Thursday, December 10, 2015

52 Ancestors No.44: Madeline (Coughlin) Demarse (1900-1929)

Mary Madeline (Coughlin) Demarse died eighty-six years ago on December 11, 1929.

She died just a couple of weeks after my grandparents were married (November 27, 1929). Madeline's daughter Eileen (the eldest) was the flower girl.

My grandparents wedding on November 27, 1929
with Madeline's daughter Eileen Denarse as flower girl (centre)

What had begun as an ear ache developed into cerebral spinal meningitis and Dr. McGavin of Hotel Dieu attended to Madeline from December 3 to December 10 when she succumbed to the illness on December 11, 1929.

Grandma Elizabeth (Annal) Coughlin cared for her and all four children while she was ill. My grand aunt Betty Harrison told my cousin Gail Kinsel that Grandma Coughlin "made sure that all of Madeline's children had a joyous Christmas and that all of the children got gifts from Santa."

What a difficult year it must have been for those children and her husband Joseph Demarse.

Mary Madeline (Coughlin) Demarse 

Mary Madeline (Coughlin) Demarse

Mary Madeline Coughlin (my grand aunt) was the first born child of William and Elizabeth (Annal) Coughlin and she was born on the 4th of September 1900 in Wallaceburg, ON, Canada


In 1901, Madeline was living with her parents (William and Elizabeth) in the home of her grandparents, James Henry and Mary (Hess) Annal in Wallaceburg, Ontario.

Source:  Year: 1901; Census Place: Wallaceburg (Town/Ville), Bothwell, Ontario; Page: 13; Family No: 118
Madeline's father (glassblower William Henry Coughlin) had just emigrated to Canada from Poughkeepsie New York in 1899 and Madeline's parents were married (November 27, 1899). By the time the 1911 census was taken, the family was found in their own home and Madeline now had four sisters!
Source:  Year: 1911; Census Place: 47 - Wallaceburg, Kent East, Ontario; Page: 18; Family No: 196

By 1917, the Coughlin family was complete with a baby boy and brother for the Coughlin sisters Lawrence William (1916-1992) shown below on his father's lap.

Madeline, the eldest daughter, is standing at the back
The other sisters in the picture in birth order are: Rhea (1902), Margaret (1904), Viola (1906), Gretta (1910) and Betty ("Bessie) (1913)


On November 17, 1920, 20-year-old Madeline married the 24-year-old Joseph Demarse who was a machinist from Stoney Point, Ontario.

Madeline's occupation listed on her marriage certificate says she was working as a bookkeeper.

Wedding Day - November 17, 1920
The witnesses to their wedding were
William Demarse and Margarite Coughlin

Source: Archives of Ontario; Series: MS932; Reel: 528


From this union, four children were born:

  • Eileen Margaret (Demarse) VanHuyse (1921-1990)
  • Joseph Aurele Demarse (1923-1998)
  • Madeline Demarse (1927-2010)
  • Elizabeth ("Betty") (Demarse) Lauzon
When researching my family history, I am always sad to read the details of ancestors whose lives were cut much too short like Madeline's. 

And poor Joseph Demarse and these children to have lost their wife and mother so young was tragic enough but to lose her so suddenly and so close to Christmas, 

It is heartwarming to know that "Lizzie" (Annal) Coughlin and the extended Coughlin family made sure that the Demarse family had a joyous Christmas that all of the children got gifts from Santa.

Madeline is buried at Heavenly Rest cemetery in Windsor, Ontario


The Border Cities Star.
December 12, 1929  (Page 7 of 42)

Source:  Archives of Ontario; Series: MS935; Reel: 370

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