06 Finding Roots in OK City

June 16, 2009. Slow start, finallyon the road to OK City at 11:00 AM. Amazing how quickly 35 miles flies by in a car. After the usual finding a hotel trauma we decided to blow budget and stay close in at the Hampton, BrickTown. (Bricktown is an area of old brick buildings. It had been in decay for years but has rebounded. Lots of nice shops and restaurants.

Our visit to the State Vital Statistics was a bust except for a nice lady who suggested that we should go to the Historical Research Center. There were a couple of people working that knew and loved their jobs. They spent 3 hours with us, delving into family secrets. (Dang, we didn’t get their names or a picture?) They/We found my grandmother, Rebecca, great aunt, Gertrude and the Great grandfather, Henry Yell. I’d heard very little of him and there they all were in the 1900 Census. The real discovery was the family of my Biological Grandfather Melvin Raper and his family in the 1900 Census. Joseph and Mary J. Raper are my Great Grandparents. In the list of children below, next to the last is their son, my grandfather, age 15. Above him several spaces is Minerva age 24. She will play a part later in this family drama. 

Joseph & Mary Raper Family, 1900 Census

Then a real shocker, our helpers were able to find evidence of a marriage license based upon two untruths. Melvin B. Raper changed his last name to Roper. Rebecca Yell indicated on the affidavit that she was 18 years old. Perhpas the age one must reach to get the license without parental approval? My grandmother, Rebecca was actually only 15 years old. Melvin was 25 but was he mature enough?

Untruthful Affidavit

1911 Marriage License


4 Responses to “06 Finding Roots in OK City”

  1. Kristina and Wayne says:

    What a fun discovery !!

    • Pat says:

      Hey guys, how could we not discover with so many relatives? Grandma had 5with first husband, married a guy with 2 kids then together they had 3 more. WOW, plenty of ROOTS!!!!

  2. Stephanie Haney says:

    Wow! This is great. I can’t wait to show the kids.

    • Pat says:

      Okay, tell em’ what you know and then when we get home we’ll get a bottle of wine, I’ll get out my Cherokee and we’ll tell tall tails of family past. Love Ya all!

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