history-genealogy site

This is a site where I will discuss my family genealogy research and related history. When a blog deals with a particular family group, I will try to include it in the title so uninterested people can skip it without skimming it. It is my hope to get feedback on research methods, family members and historical context from other historians, genealogists, and researchers. (c) Barbara L. de Mare 2006, 2007

Location: Englewood, New Jersey, United States

Sunday, May 21, 2006


This is an entry from my Chapel Research journal for 23 February 2006.

Another success story--this time with collaterals. I knew one of my Massachusetts

Chapels, namely my 2G grandfather Richard Smith Chapel, married Amanda Eacker, a Palatine. They met as her brother John Eacker had already left the Mohawk Valley and moved to Brooklyn. Originally Richard lived next door to John--John at 79 Second Place and Richard at 89 Second Place. Then Richard built (or bought) a big house at 81 First Place. After the mid 1850s the John Eackers seemed to have disappeared, and didn't come up on the census for 1860. As the street numbers are on the 1860 census I could follow it to his house, where he was still living. From that

I got the names of 3 of his children. A 4th I had already found in the New York Times obituaries--she had died at about 2 years of age. Now for the interesting parts. They lived in a brownstone. If you are not familiar with Brooklyn brownstones, they are 4 story attached houses. They were originally one family homes, then in recent years became apartments, one apartment per floor. So there was lots of room for extended families to all live together. I had known from city directories that the business in which John Eacker and Richard Chapel were engaged together was Chapel, Eacker and Downey. I never had any idea who Downey was. Lo and behold, there he was on the 1860 census living in the Eacker household! Second interesting thing from the 1860 census--another member of the John Eacker household was Jesse Mitchell, also a merchant. John's wife's maiden name was Mary Mitchell. They got married in Albany, so she is also an upstate person. All these glimpses into the lives of this family, which is the one concerning which I am trying to write a book, because of my curiosity as to what happened to Amanda's brother! In the 1870 and 1880 censi he was in a little village in St. Joseph County, Michigan. The daughter was married to someone from Connecticut and living in the same household. Did they meet in New York or Michigan? And why was John in Michigan? Was he still in business with Richard Chapel? According to family stories Richard made his fortune by trade with the west. I will have to see where this village is--whether it is on the Lake or an a railroad route. Of course every discovery just raises more questions. I also have to check and see if the studio pictures I have of John and his wife Mary were taken in Brooklyn or Michigan--I don't recall off hand, but think it might have been Michigan. As I was already up way past my bedtime getting all the census results cited properly and entered on FTM, that's as far as I got last night.


Anonymous Sandy said...

I am descended from Amanda Eacker Chapel's sister, Anna Gertrude Eacker, who married Lester Wilcox. I am starting to research Jacob Eacker's (their grandfather) potential service in the Revolutionary War. I may have other information of interest to you. I have some stuff up on my website if you'd like to check it out:

You also can contact me via that site

1:53 PM  
Blogger his gene, esq. said...

I have gotten my nieces into DAR through Jacob Eacker. I also have pictures of Anna Gertrude and of Lester Wilcox.

7:33 PM  
Anonymous Sandy said...

I would LOVE to see those pictures. Could you email copies to me or are they online somewhere? Or is there some other way to obtain copies? My email is info@parenthoodnj.com

It's a parallel line but I have information on Anna and lester's son, my great-grandfather, William H.H. Wilcox who was a Civil War veteran.

11:14 AM  
Anonymous Sandy said...

By the way, I think it's kind of interesting that you're in Englewood, NJ and I live in Middlesex County, NJ. Small world!

11:17 AM  

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