On October 3, 1827, in Saint Jean Baptiste De Rouville, Quebec, Canada, Joseph Leduc was born to Marie Eulalie Chicoine and Joseph Leduc. He was the second son to be born. An older brother, Joseph Damien Leduc was born on 8 Aug 1826. Sadly, he died just nine days later and was buried on 15 Aug 1826. The family lived in Saint Jean Baptiste de Rouville until about 1839, for his youngest sister Angelique was born 1 July 1839 in Detroit, Michigan. That was the year his mother was said to have died. Joseph was twelve years old.
By 1850, 23-year-old Joseph has married Clarissa Amelia Frink, and the couple resided in Sterling, Macomb, Michigan. In 1860, the couple lived in Warren, Michigan with Clarissa’s brother, Walter, her sister, Ellen, and her mother, Hannah. Joseph’s occupation was listed as a farmer. The couple also had six children: Almyra (9), Herman (8), Joseph (6), Hannah (4), and David (2), and Elias (8 mos). Over the years, Clarissa and Joseph had three more children, Elsie (8), and twin girls, Ella and Ellen (5).
In January of 1863, Joseph (37) and his older brother, Jerome Prosper (39) volunteered for the U.S. Civil War for the state of Michigan under the command of Captain Charles M. Walker. From the twenty men listed on the registration records, the youngest men were 35 years old, and the three oldest were 44 years old. While the majority were born in this country, seven were not. My grandfather, his brother, and two other soldiers were born in Canada. Two were born in Germany, and one was born in England. All the men were farmers, except for two. One as a machinist and the other was a grocer. Since Joseph Le Duc was a common name, I did find information about a Joseph La Duke serving in this war. However, with the variations in spelling, I could not determine if the information was about my grandfather.
After the war, the family remained in Warren, Michigan. In 1870, Joseph’s occupation was listed as a stave cutter. Around 1875, the family moved to West Cherry, Kansas, and Joseph became a farmer and owned land on Choteau Creek, and he became involved in some of the community’s activities. In 1885, his two-year-old granddaughter Mabel was also living with his family.
By 1900, Joseph was living with his brother-in-law and his sister-in-law, Walter Frink and Ellen Frink, and five of his grandchildren, Mabel, William, Francis, Annie, and Herman. Their mother, Elsa, died in 1898. Joseph’s wife, Clarissa, had died in 1892.
According to local newspapers, my grandparents were among the first settlers in West Cherry, Kansas. Joseph was still farming at the age of 75 when I discovered addition news articles about him. In 1904, The Evening Star reported that he had a cancerous tumor and that he was seriously ill. It all stated he planned on sticking around so he could vote a “democratic ticket..unless Grover Cleveland was chosen as the nominee in which case he will feel impelled to vote for Teddy Roosevelt” (The Evening Star).
Joseph made good on his promise and most likely voted for Teddy Roosevelt that November. In December 1904, Joseph passed away and was buried next to his wife, Clarissa, at the Choteau Cemetery in Independence, Kansas.
- 1850 United States Federal Census, Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2009, search.ancestry.com/search/db.aspx?dbid=8054.
- 1860 United States Federal Census, Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2009, search.ancestry.com/search/db.aspx?dbid=7667.
- “1870 United States Federal Census.” 1920 Census | 1920 US Federal Census Records |Ancestry.com, Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2009, search.ancestry.com/search/db.aspx?dbid=7163.
- 1880 United States Federal Census. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2010. 1880 U.S. Census Index Provided by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, search.ancestry.com/search/db.aspx?dbid=6742.
- “1900 United States Federal Census.” 1920 Census | 1920 US Federal Census Records |Ancestry.com, Online Publication – Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2004.Original Data – United States of America, Bureau of the Census. Twelfth Census of the United States, 1900. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 1900. T623, 18, search.ancestry.com/search/db.aspx?dbid=7602.
- Duncan, L. Wallace. History of Montgomery County, Kansas. Press of Iola Register, 1903.
- Floyd, Mary D. La Duke Family Tree. 1970. (Typed).
- FPW, indexed database, Find A Grave (http://www.findagrave.com, Choteau Cemetery, Indpendence, Montgomery, Kansas, Joseph LaDuke memorial #35287506 with gravestone photograph.
- Historical Data Systems, comp. American Civil War | Ancestry.com, Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 1999, search.ancestry.com/search/DB.aspx?dbid=3866.
- Kansas State Census Collection, 1855-1925, Online Publication – Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2009., search.ancestry.com/search/DB.aspx?did1088.
- “Le Programme De Recherche En Démographie Historique (The Research Program in Historical Demography).” Le Programme De Recherche En Démographie Historique (The Research Program in Historical Demography) – PRDH-IGD, Généalogie Québec Drouin Institute, Feb. 2017, http://www.prdh-igd.com/en/le-prdh.
- “Michigan, Births and Christenings Index, 1867-1911.” 1920 Census | 1920 US Federal Census Records | Ancestry.com, Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2011, search.ancestry.com/search/db.aspx?dbid=2560.
- “South Kansas Tribune 21 Apr 1897, 2.” Newspapers.com, Detroit Free Press, http://www.newspapers.com/image/381377800/?terms=Joseph%2BLaduke.
- “The Coffeyville Daily Journal 19 Sep 1902.” Newspapers.com, Detroit Free Press, http://www.newspapers.com/clip/21126371/the_coffeyville_daily_journal_19_sep/?xid=637.
- “The Evening Star (Independence, Kansas) 16 Sept 1906.” Newspapers.com, Detroit Free Press, http://www.newspapers.com/clip/20985539
- “U.S., Civil War Draft Registrations Records, 1863-1865.” 1920 Census | 1920 US Federal Census Records | Ancestry.com, Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2010, search.ancestry.com/search/db.aspx?dbid=1666.