Wrapping up the boys of Adams High School, New York, 1941

It’s been a crazy fun time these past 10 days, and because of that my blogging has suffered greatly. To make up for lost time I’m going to research four young gents in this post. This information will wrap up all the boys of the 1941 class of Adams High School in Adams, New York. They are, in order of appearance: David Woodall, Francis Murray, Edwin Nicholas, and Charles Brown.

David Woodall was born in New York in 1923. Adams was his home from at least 1925 to 1940 but the household shifted. In 1925 David lived with parents Ira Woodall and Mary Abbey, siblings and an aunt; down the street from Ira’s parents. In 1930 the family had moved in with grandfather John Woodall. It was a large household. John (the grandfather) was head. His daughter Alma and her son lived with him as well as son Ira and his 6, including David. No in-laws listed (Alma’s husband or Ira’s wife). Ira was the only household member listed as having a job; he was an electrician. Hard times in 1930!

By 1940 the household had shrunk. Aunt Alma Nutting was now the head. She ran boarding house. Four Woodall children lived with her, 2 nieces and another nephew and Alma’s son. The oldest niece, Barbara Woodall at 18, worked as a maid in a private house. The oldest nephew, William at 21, was a chauffeur for a publishing company. David was in his 3rd year of high school. I don’t know if David ever married or had children. I hope to find some trees bearing his name to pass the photo onto.

Francis Murray – unfortunately there are far too many Francis Murray’s in the area to successfully identify this young man. Hopefully someone will recognize the photo (even though it’s a little on the fuzzy side).

Edwin Nichols was born in New York in 1924 to Raymond & Hattie Nichols. In 1925, one year old Edwin lived with his parents and several boarders in Wilna, Jefferson Co., New York. His father was a farm laborer and his mother a house laborer. In 1930 and 1940 the family lived in other towns near Adams. Lorraine in 1930, with the addition of a sister. His father was still farming. By 1940 the family had really expanded with the addition of 4 children. They lived in Worth, New York at the time. He married Alice Hobbs in 1945.

Edwin died on March 11, 2002 and is buried in Lorraine where he likely spent all his adult life. At the time of his death, he had 4 children, 12 grandchildren and 4 great-grandchildren. What a rich life! According to his obituary,

Mr. Nichols bought his family’s farm in 1955 and operated it until 1987, when he retired from farming. Earlier in his working career, he had been a mechanic for 10 years at C.N. Snyder & Sons, Adams, and for two years for R.H. Ennis, Burrville. He had done custom spraying for farmers in the area and was town of Worth highway superintendent for 32 years, retiring in January.

Charles Brown has a very common name, and while I’m not 100% certain on the ID, I’m fairly confident this is our man. He was the son of Walter and Bertha Brown, born in New York in 1924. The family lived in Lyme, Jefferson county, New York from 1925-1940 at least. In 1925, father Walter was a farmer originally from Canada. They had 11 children, Charles was the youngest. The oldest, son Claude, was 23! The family looked much the same in 1930, but several children had left home. And in 1940, Charles is one of 3 children still at home, which was still Lyme. Bertha was head of household, so likely that Walter had died by this point.

Charles Thurston Brown, I believe his full name was, died in 1988 in Hawaii. His parents, and many siblings are buried in Three Mile Bay Cemetery in Jefferson County. It’s possible that Charles joined the war effort and ended up in the Pacific, but I haven’t been able to confirm that.

2 thoughts on “Wrapping up the boys of Adams High School, New York, 1941

  1. Hi, I just found this page and your site – what great work. I found it via this post as i’m researching my family – I’m David Woodall’s granddaughter. He did marry and have kids and is still alive and looking great (90!). I’d love to get any photos and pass them around the family. I’ve also sent him this link. Your blog has been wonderful to read through. Cheers, Lindsay

    • Lindsay,
      That is absolutely wonderful!! I do this thinking how great it would be if some random person had a photo of my grandparent. I’m so glad you found it and have passed it on. That’s the only picture I have of your grandfather. However, I do know that the class photo of Adams still has copies for sale on eBay (where I found it). Here’s the link if you’re interested (I’m not the seller): http://www.ebay.com/itm/290792843743?ssPageName=STRK:MEWNX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1497.l2649. Please feel free to use this photo in any of your family trees and to pass around to any and all family members.

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