Name: Edward Lawrence (Sr.) Parker
Given Name: Edward Lawrence (Sr.)
Birth: 18 Apr 1894 in Chicago, Cook, Illinois
Christening: 22 Apr 1894 St. Cecilia Catholic Church. Chicago
Death: 8 Jul 1980 in Burbank, Cook, Illinois
Burial: 12 Jul 1980 Holy Sepulchre Cemetery, Worth, Illinois. NW corner of Section 11
Change Date: 27 Nov 2017 at 18:01:51
Notes for Edward Lawrence Parker, Sr.:
On April 22, 1894, at the age of four days, Edward was baptized at St. Cecilia Catholic Church. That church closed in 1971. It was located at the intersection of 45th St. and Wells St., in Chicago.
A photo of the listing of Edward's baptism in the church baptismal registry book:
In the 1960s, Ed told stories to some of his grandchildren, stating that before he turned 17 years of age, he had moved (1,100 miles west) to Miles City, Montana, where he was a cowboy moving cattle to and from Wyoming. Ed apparently either traveled with, or met up with, his older brother, George. They may also have spent some time in South Dakota. The latter is based on crossed off writing on Ed's 1917 World War draft registration card.
On May 31, 1917, Edward signed a World War draft registration card. It looks like he didn't know how to spell his middle name:
Information on that card stated that Ed was then a farm laborer, and that he had worked four years as a sheet metal worker. If that was accurate, then Ed was out west as a cowboy for no more than three years, from some point after the 1910 census was recorded in April (which showed the just barely 16-year-old Ed living at his parents' home in Chicago) until no later than May of 1913, which would have left four years for him to be a sheet metal worker before his World War draft card was filled out.
Edward was a private in the U.S. Army from August 2, 1917, through April 7, 1919, during World War 1. He served with the 17th Aero Squadron in France, Belgium, England, and Germany.
The 1920 U.S. census had an effective date of January first. Ed's parents' home was enumerated January eighth. The census page shows that Edward, 25, was living with his parents and four siblings at 1241 E. 46th St., Chicago. Ed was a sheet metal worker. The census taker mistakenly reversed the occupations of Ed and his sister Catherine.
A photo of that 1920 census page:
Edward married Catherine Frances Byrne on Wednesday, November 24, 1920. The ceremony was held at St. Leo Catholic Church in Chicago. That church (and school) was at 7752 S. Emerald Avenue. In 2004, everything other than the bell tower was demolished so a 140 unit apartment building for homeless veterans could be built on the site.
Despite the fact that Ed's hobby was photography, there were no wedding photos taken. The wedding was the day before Thanksgiving. Maybe the date was chosen so that out-of-town family and friends who were coming in for Thanksgiving, could arrive a day early and attend the wedding. Five other couples were also married that same day at that same church.
A photo of the marriage license and marriage record document of Edward Parker and Catherine Byrne:
A photo of the couple's listing in the church marriage registry book, including a photo of the exterior of the church:
At the time of the birth of Edward and Catherine's first child, Margaret Mary Parker, on September 23, 1921, the Parker family lived at 7863 S. Eggleston Ave., Chicago. That address was the home of Catherine's widowed father, Cornelius Byrne. That was still the couple's address when their son Ed, Junior was born on October 27, 1924.
A 1928 photo of Ed Parker, his father George, and Ed's younger brother, James:
The 1930 U.S. census had an effective date of April first. The Parker household was enumerated April second. The census page shows Edward, 35; Catherine, 31; and their children Margaret, 8; Joan, 6; Edward, 5; Catherine, 3; Robert, 2; and Paul, 5 months of age. They lived in a home they owned, valued at $15,000, at 8954 S. Laflin St., Chicago. Ed was a sheet metal worker for the city of Chicago. It was noted on that census page that the family owned a radio.
A photo of that 1930 census page:
Edward and Catherine Byrne Parker had 11 children:
1) Margaret Mary Parker, known as Marge, born September 23, 1921, in Chicago. Her first and middle names were incorrectly reversed on her birth certificate, but nothing was done to correct it for decades. On January 25, 1946, when Marge was 24, her mother Catherine submitted a signed correction.
Marge Parker married DeWitt Robert "De" Corry on October 21, 1947, in Adell, Wisconsin. That church was five miles west of the Parker family farm. The couple moved to southern California. They adopted a son and a daughter.
DeWitt became paralyzed below his waist when he was shot in Italy in 1944 during World War 2. During his recovery, he met his future wife Marge, a registered nurse, at the Vaughan Veterans' Hospital, in Hines, Illinois, which is just west of Chicago. De spent the last 54 years of his life in a wheelchair. But he didn't seem bitter about his partial paralysis. He was one of the nicest guys ever.
Marge Corry died November 27, 1978, in Santa Monica, California. Marge's FindAGrave memorial includes photos of her, and a photo of her grave marker:
2) Joan Frances Parker, born May 23, 1923, in Chicago. She married Ralph George Schmidt on May 4, 1946, in Adell. The couple had six children.
Joan Schmidt died March 7, 1997, in Sheboygan, Wisconsin. Joan's FindAGrave memorial includes photos of her, and a photo of her grave marker:
3) Edward Lawrence Parker, Jr., known as Ed, born October 27, 1924, in Chicago. A photo of Ed and his Parker grandparents, from 1925, and a photo of Ed and his two grandfathers, from 1928:
Ed married Rosemary Cassia Burgan on June 27, 1948, in Compton, California. They had four children. Decades later the couple divorced, and Ed married the divorcee Barbara Dianne Stefanowski Dayon on October 19, 1984, in Hemet, California.
Edward L. Parker, Jr. died March 28, 1996, in Hemet, California. Ed's FindAGrave memorial includes photos of him and a photo of his grave marker:
4) Catherine Eleanor Parker, born April 29, 1926, in Chicago. She married Myron Carroll Schmidt on April 30, 1949, in Adell. The couple did not have any children.
Catherine Schmidt died July 3, 2000, in Hinsdale, Illinois. Catherine's FindAGrave memorial includes photos of her, and a photo of her grave marker:
5) Robert Cornelius Parker, known as Bob, born October 20, 1927, in Chicago. He married Judith Ann "Judy" Hamilton on December 9, 1954, in Cook County, Illinois. The couple had five children.
Bob Parker died December 7, 1995, in Oak Lawn, Illinois. Bob's FindAGrave memorial includes photos of him and a photo of his grave marker:
6) Paul Joseph Parker, born October 28, 1929, in Chicago. He married Georganne Genevieve Zeller on October 6, 1956, in Chicago. The couple had four children. A fifth - George Edward Parker - was stillborn on February 9, 1963, in Long Beach, California.
Paul Parker died January 18, 2011, in Carmel, Indiana. Paul's FindAGrave memorial includes photos of him and a photo of his grave marker:
More information about Paul, Georganne and Georganne's ancestors is in this chart.
7) Virginia Mary Parker, known as Ginny, born August 16, 1933, in Evergreen Park.
She married John Joseph Surma on September 15, 1956, in Chicago. The couple had three children.
Virginia Surma died March 9, 2014, in Northlake, Illinois. Virginia's FindAGrave memorial:
8) Philip Stephen Parker, known as Phil, born October 18, 1934, in Evergreen Park. He married Ruth Rose Bley on August 30, 1958, in Lake Church, Wisconsin. The couple had five children.
In 1970, Phill submitted a name-change document to the state of Illinois, because both his first and middle names were misspelled on his 1934 birth certificate:
Philip Parker died October 1, 2000, in Belgium, Wisconsin. Phil's FindAGrave memorial:
9) Mary Anne Parker, born July 19, 1936, in Chicago. She married Gordon William "Spike" Bley on May 12, 1956, in Sheboygan Falls, Wisconsin. The couple had four children who survived to adulthood. A fifth - Stephen W. Bley - died at the age of 23 days on July 9, 1960.
Mary Anne Bley died March 8, 2010, in Belgium, Wisconsin. Mary Anne's FindAGrave memorial includes photos of her, and a photo of her grave marker:
10) Geraldine Louise Parker, known as Geri, born September 29, 1937, likely in Cook County. She was adopted. A false story about who Geri's biological parents were, was told to people back when Geri was a child. But Geri's sister Catherine stated decades later that Geri's biological mother was Catherine's own Aunt Catherine Knowles Parker, who had never married. Catherine Knowles Parker was the only sister of Edward L. Parker, Sr. (Geri's biological father remains unknown.) Geri Parker married Kenneth William Schmit on October 5, 1957, in Sheboygan Falls, Wisconsin. The couple had five children.
11) Richard Knowles Parker, known as Rich, born September 27, 1939, in Cook County. He married Marie Marchese on August 26, 1961, in Gardena, California. The couple had five children.
Rich Parker died October 5, 2014, in Wildomar, Riverside, California. Rich's FindAGrave memorial includes photos of him and a photo of his grave marker:
A 1930s photo of Edward and Catherine:
The 1940 U.S. census had an effective date of April first. The Parker household was enumerated April sixth. The census page shows Edward, 45, Catherine, 41, and their children Margaret, 18; Joan, 16; Edward, Jr., 15; Catherine, 13; Robert, 12; Paul, 10; Virginia, 6; Philip, 5; Mary Anne, 3; Geraldine, 2; and Richard, six months. They still lived on Laflin. Ed was still a sheet metal worker. He earned $3,300 during 1939.
The x in a circle to the right of Catherine's name indicates that she was the person who stated the family information to the census taker. The "H-2" in column 14 shows that she stated that she and Ed's education ended after their second year in high school.
A photo of that 1940 census page:
A 2007 photo of that Parker family home at 8954 S. Laflin:
On April 27, 1942, at the age of 48, Ed signed a World War 2 draft registration card. Ed and these other 45 to 64 year old men were not going to get called for military service. The purpose of the registration was to document the mens' skills for possible use in the United States, later in the war. The card shows that Edward and his family still lived at 8954 S. Laflin. He worked at the Streets and Electricity department of the City of Chicago. His physical description was 5' 8½" tall, 192 pounds, with brown eyes.
A photo of Edward's World War 2 draft registration card:
A photo of Ed and Catherine's eleven children, from about 1944:
In July or August of 1944, Ed and his family moved from Chicago to a farm about three and a half miles southwest of downtown Oostburg, Wisconsin. The farm, house, barn, two silos, and other buildings were on property at the northwest corner of Rauwerdink Road and Risseeuw Road, in Oostburg. The house did not have running water. There was a well on the property, and the older children had to each use a hand pump to fill a bucket of water, and carry it into the house. The house did have electricity.
A 2010 photo of that farm, after two old silos, formerly immediately to the left (south) of the barn, were removed:
The address is N1760 Rauwerdink Rd., Oostburg.
But Ed continued to work and live in Chicago as a sheet metal worker during the work week. He was home in Wisconsin during weekends. The story has been told that the reason Ed moved his family to Wisconsin was to get his children away from the possible influence of the Chicago gangsters.
A photo of Edward and Catherine Parker, all eleven of their children, four spouses of those children, and the first two of Edward and Catherine's grandchildren. This photo was apparently taken in late 1949, either for Thanksgiving, Christmas, or for Edward and Catherine's 29th wedding anniversary on November 24th.
In the Summer of 1952 Ed and Catherine Parker sold that farm. On August 22nd, Ed sold the farm animals and the farm equipment:
The Ed and Catherine Parker family moved to a home at 240 Monroe Street, in Sheboygan Falls, Wisconsin. Ed started a sheet metal business there and worked at that until 1959 or early 1960.
An April 5, 1960, newspaper mention of their son Marine Corporal Richard, stated that Ed and Catherine were then living at 849 Main Street in Belgium, Wisconsin. That might have been the home of their daughter Catherine and her husband Myron Schmidt.
Apparently not long after that, Ed and Catherine - whose children had all moved out - moved themselves back to Oostburg, to a small two bedroom home with low ceilings. Apparently, that house was moved there from a previous location. It was located on the northeast corner of State Highway 32 and Hoftiezer Road. This house was 1.3 miles east of their previous farm in Oostburg. The house was located on property with an apple orchard, and in back - a native forest, where beehives were kept.
Ed didn't move there to retire. He worked on his apple orchard, maintaining the trees, and picking and selling apples. The address is W2648 Hoftiezer Rd., Oostburg. The property still operated as an apple orchard as of 2011. But soon thereafter many of the apple trees were removed, likely because they were too old. Other fruit was grown in some places on that property.
A map that shows the relationship between where the Ed and Catherine Parker home and farm from 1944 through about 1952 was located, left, and the home and apple orchard where Edward and Catherine lived from about 1960 through about 1977 (after about eight years living in a home in Sheboygan Falls) center, and downtown Oostburg, upper right:
A photo of Ed and his three brothers, from about 1952. They stand in birth order, left to right, oldest to youngest: George, Ed, James, and Herb:
A photo of Edward and Catherine, taken in the mid or late 1950s at a wedding reception:
A color photo of Edward and Catherine, taken in the Summer of 1964 on a Lake Michigan beach:
From the April 17, 1969 Sheboygan Press, a story about a family get-together for Edward and Catherine, although the writer mistakenly added 10 years to Catherine's age:
A photo of Edward Lawrence Parker and his wife Catherine Frances Byrne Parker, taken near the time of their 50th wedding anniversary, in November of 1970. The photo was professionally taken in the sunroom addition at the rear of their home, on their apple orchard property, at W2648 Hoftiezer Rd., Oostburg, Wisconsin.
From the December 2, 1970 Sheboygan Press, a story about Edward and Catherine's 50th wedding anniversary party:
A photo of Ed, Catherine and all 11 of their children, taken at that party at the Belgium Community Center in Belgium, Wisconsin:
Standing, left to right: Geri, Paul, Bob, Rich, Ed, Phil, Virginia.
Sitting, left to right: Catherine, Marge, Catherine, Ed, Joan, Mary Anne.
A larger group photo taken minutes after the previous photo. This photo includes a priest, Edward and Catherine, their 11 children and 11 spouses, and 42 of the 43 grandchildren of Edward and Catherine. Grandchild John Schmidt was not in the photo because he had gone to pick up his girlfriend:
In his 70s and early 80s, Ed continued to operate the apple orchard on the property where his home was located in Oostburg.
A poor quality photo of Ed's death certificate:
A photo of Edward's death notice in the July 10, 1980 Chicago Tribune:
Ed's SSN was 351-07-5852. The first five digits in that number show that he got that number and card in Illinois between 1936 and 1950.
Edward's FindAGrave memorial includes photos of his grave marker:
That Parker gravesite includes Ed, Catherine, (whose name and years of birth and death were inscribed on the pedestal) Ed's sister Catherine K. Parker, and Ed's parents George E. Parker and Margaret Knowles Parker.
Ed's last will:Photo
Father: George Edward Parker b: 22 Apr 1863 in Geneseo, Henry, Illinois
Mother: Margaret Louise Knowles b: 25 Feb 1865 in Luggacurren, Tullomoy, County Queens (now County Laois) Ireland c: 26 Feb 1865 in Parish of Ballyadams, Diocese of Kildare and Leighlin, County Queens
Catherine Frances Byrne b: 4 Mar 1899 in Chicago, Cook, Illinois c: 12 Mar 1899 in St. Anne Catholic Church, Chicago
24 Nov 1920
in Chicago, Cook, Illinois
- Paul Joseph Parker b: 28 Oct 1929 in Chicago, Cook, Illinois