Thursday, May 31, 2012

Ray Towery of Caldwell County, Kentucky

It is often very difficult to research your family history if you did not live with your biological family. So when records regarding adoptees or orphanages turn up, I try to save them in case they will be helpful in someone's research. The following information comes from Caldwell County, Kentucky court records. They are public records and open to all persons.

In Fiscal Court Order Book 1 (1893-1905), page 544 (5 August 1904), we find the following information: "It appearing to the satisfaction of the Court that [blank] Towery an infant has no permanent home, that she is destitute and dependent upon charity for support that her father has abandoned his family and is supposed to be living in the State of Arkansas and makes no provisions for the support of said child and that her mother is dead. It is ordered that [blank] Towery be and she is by this court surrendered and committed to the Kentucky Children's Home Society of Louisville and that said Society may obtain for said child legal adoption by some proper person or persons to be chosen by said Society or its authorized agents And it is further appearing that said Society will require Fifty Dollars to be paid to it on account of the support of said child."

Then, in County Court Order Book R, page 366, 16 March 1908, we find the following: "It appearing to the satisfaction of the Court that Ray Towery, now about five years old, and he is destitute, and has no relations known to this court, and that he is now a ward of the Children's Free Hospital, Louisville, Ky, It is ordered that the said Ray Towery be, and he is surrendered and committed to the Kentucky Children's Home Society Louisville, Ky to be dealt with according to the rules and regulations ... I take judicial notice of the apparent fact that Ray Towery has been tacitly under the control of the above named Society since 1904."

Even though called "she" in the first record, there is no doubt that both records pertain to Ray Towery. At age 7, Ray Towery is found as a inmate of the Kentucky Children's Home in Louisville on the 1910 Jefferson County, Kentucky census. I am not sure where he went from there, but there is a Ray Towerie, age 18, as a servant in the home of Earnest Eastland on the 1920 Lyon County, Kentucky census. Did he return to western Kentucky when he left the Children's Home?

I hope this information will help someone who has a brick wall in their Towery family research.

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