Friday, May 30, 2014

1873-1880 Autograph Album of Mary Ella Coburn of Chelsea, Massachusetts; Class of 1873 at Chelsea HS

1873-1880 autograph album of Mary Ella Coburn of Chelsea, Massachusetts, presumably a graduate of Chelsea High School in the Class of 1873.

The album measures approximately 7" x 4-1/4" and contains the sentiments of over 40 of Mary Ella's relatives, schoolmates and friends.  An alphabetical list of the signers, with any residence and school information, appears at the end of this post.

From online research, hopefully correct:  [corrections and additions welcome!]

Mary Ella Coburn was born 14 February 1854 at Boston, Massachusetts, the daughter of Henry Reed Coburn and Eliza (Fosdick) Coburn, who were born at Fort Hill in Boston, Massachusetts, and Pennsylvania, respectively.

Two of Mary Ella's brothers inscribed pages in her album.  Her oldest sibling George H. Coburn signed a page.

Her brother Frank Forrester Coburn's name appears in tiny handwriting at the margin of a page near the end of the album.  It's possible that someone else wrote his name.

Mary Ella's older sister Emma Jane (Coburn) Brolaski had died before Mary Ella started her album.  Emma Jane had married John B. Brolaski on 6 February 1866.  Their daughter Cora M. Brolaski, who was born in Missouri about 1867 inscribed a page in her aunt Mary Ella's album on September 19, 1878.  Either she was visiting family in Massachusetts, or Mary Ella was visiting St. Louis, Missouri.

From the many signers who noted that they were members of the Class of 1873 at Chelsea High School, I'm assuming that Mary Ella Coburn was also in that class.  Whether Mary Ella went on to pursue higher education or not, I don't know, but the 1880 Census of Chelsea, Massachusetts, shows her living with her parents Henry and Eliza and not employed.

Not that she necessarily needed to work, as her father, while in Louisville, Kentucky about 1840, had discovered a way to extract oil from lard and then returned to Massachusetts to build a factory at Chelsea that proved very profitable.

Mary Ella was working as a music teacher when she married John H. Haskell on 27 April 1887 at Chelsea, Massachusetts.  John, who gave his occupation as "collector" was born about 1854 at Garland, Maine, the son of Andrew Mayhew Haskell and , Mary Ella Coburn married , son of Andrew Mayhew Haskell and Mary B. (Sargent) Haskell.   At the time of the 1910 Census of Chelsea, John H. Haskell was working as an undertaker.  By 1920 he was working as a clerk at a wholesale automobile business.

Before their marriage, at Chelsea, Massachusetts, in 1877, John H. Haskell signed a page in his future wife's album.

If you have corrections and/or additions, or information on any of the signers listed below, please leave a comment or contact me directly.

One page was signed by Ellen M. Stone, a missionary to areas in the Ottoman Empire.  She signed her page at Samokov, "Eastern Turkey", on September 20, 1878, while she was at Chelsea, Massachusetts.  In the "Miss Stone Affair", Ellen Maria Stone, who hailed from Roxbury, Massachusetts, would later be kidnapped near Bansko, Bulgaria in 1901.  In what some call the first modern "hostage crisis", Ellen and her pregnant companion, were held for over five months and released only after the American public raised funds for their ransom.

Surnames in the album

De Bacon
Bucknam     [2]
Coburn     [3]
Davis     [2]
De Bacon
Pratt     [2]

Signers in the Album          [Note: Given names within a specific surname may not be in alphabetical order.]

  • Carrie G. De Bacon of Chelsea, Massachusetts, signed at Chelsea High School on June 6, 1873. Caroline Gardner de Bacon
  • Charles M. Berry, signed at Chelsea High School on May 29, 1873. Class of 1873
  • ? Briggs of Cleveland, Ohio.
  • Cora M. Brolaski of St. Louis, Missouri, signed on September 19, 1878. She was the daughter of Mary Ella's sister Emma Jane (Coburn) Brolaski and Joseph B. Brolaski. Emma died in 1872; Joseph married Emily P. Pettes in 1874 at St. Louis, Missouri.
  • Mary E. Bucknam of Columbia Falls, Maine, signed at Chelsea, Massachusetts, on November 23, 1880
  • L. E. Bucknam of Columbia Falls, Maine, signed at Chelsea, Massachusetts, on November 19, 1881
  • Mary E. Coburn of Chelsea, Massachusetts; album owner Mary Ella Coburn
  • Brother George, signed on December 17, 1873. George H. Coburn, Mary Ella's oldest sibling.
  • Frank F. Coburn. Mary Ella's older brother Frank Forrester Coburn. His name appears in tiny print sideways on one of the margins of a back end paper.
  • Eliza A. Curtis, signed at Chelsea, Massachusetts, on June 20, 1873
  • Frank W. Davis, from or at Titusville, Pennsylvania, signed on December 17, 1873
  • Clara H. Davis of Martha's Vineyard, Massachusetts, signed at Boston, Massachusetts, on March 12, 1880
  • C. N. Fuller, signed at Titusville [no state written] on December 17, 1873.
  • Nellie L. Gilmore, Class of 1873, Chelsea High School
  • Sarah M. Glazier, signed at Chelsea High School in May 17, 1873
  • Jessie B. Hart of Saratoga Springs, New York, signed at Boston, Massachusetts, on March 24, 1880
  • J. H. Haskell of Garland [no state written], signed at Chelsea, Massachusetts in 1877.  He was John Henry Haskell, who would marry Mary Ella Coburn in 
  • Frank A. Hill, signed on April 24, 1873; he transcribed the poem "Song of Songs" on the right facing page.
  • Emma W. Jones, signed at Chelsea, Massachusetts, in 1875. "Your South Carolina friend"
  • Sara L. Kenison, signed June 13, 1873 at Chelsea High School
  • Adelia Lane, signed on May 9, 1873; the right facing page is half missing vertically, but the handwriting looks very similar to that of Adelia Lane.
  • Annie E. Lee
  • Annie P. Leonard, signed at Chelsea, Massachusetts, on June 22, 1873
  • Sara P. Littlefield, signed on June 19, 1873 Middle initial hard to read but possibly H. I. M. or H. V.M.
  • Emily E. Lovejoy, signed at Chelsea, Massachusetts, on July 24, 1873
  • Albert H. Low of Chelsea, Massachusetts, signed in 1876
  • Flora A. Mason, Class of 1873 at Chelsea High School, signed on June 24, 1873
  • Lillie Maxson, signed at N.E.C., Boston, Massachusetts, on June 21, 1880
  • James H. Mercer, signed at Chelsea High School on May 20, 1875
  • Susie M. Newell, signed at Chelsea, Massachusetts
  • Frank M. Nottage, Chelsea High School, Class of 1873; "Thy Friend"
  • L. R. Paige, signed at Chelsea High School, Class of 1873. Presumably Luellen R. Paige
  • Etta A. Potter, signed at Boston, Massachusetts, on June 17, 1880. Could also be Ella A. Potter.
  • Waldo E. Pratt, signed on August 11, 1877; C.S.S. Read more about Waldo Elliott Pratt: 
  • A. M. Pratt of Chelsea, Massachusetts, signed on August 12, 1877. Presumably Arthur M. Pratt, brother of signer Waldo Elliott Pratt.
  • Carrie V. Ricker, signed at Chelsea, Massachusetts, on June 3, 1873
  • Helen J. Sawyer, signed at Chelsea, Massachusetts, on May 15, 1873
  • Charles S. Scott, signed at Chelsea High School on May 31, 1873
  • Jennie R. Sheldon, signed at Chelsea, Massachusetts, on May 5, 1873
  • Ellen M. Stone of Samokov, European Turkey, signed at Chelsea, Massachusetts, on September 20, 1878. In what some call the first modern hostage crisis, Ellen Maria Stone of Roxbury, Massachusetts, and her pregnant traveling companion were captured in 1901 near Bansko, Bulgaria, and ransomed, through funds raised by the American public, in 1902. As noted in a "Missionary Herald" article in 1906, Ellen was associated with the Collegiate and Theological Institute at Samokov.
  • N. S. Tiffany
  • Lucy A. Tower, signed in May 1873
  • D. Williams of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; sketches of women's faces
  • W. H. Wilson, signed on May 20, 1873; Chelsea High School Class of 1873
  • Frank H. Wyman, signed at Chelsea High School on June 4, 1873
Chelsea, Massachusetts

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