Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Lucy Hutchinson Van Sciver

Two weeks ago, the Lovely One and I were researching the family of Isaac Van Sciver, born in New Jersey in 1793. On 28 Sep 1816, he married Lucy Hutchinson in Gloucester County, New Jersey. Lucy was born in 1796 in New Jersey to "parents of foreign birth." Thus far, we have discovered four children for Isaac and Lucy, namely, Jeremiah, Emily, Elizabeth and Isaac, Jr. I have a feeling there are more.

I did a routine Google search for Lucy Hutchinson, hoping that some other family historian had posted biographical information about her. Lo and behold, there was a message posted about four years ago by Marge Rice of Joliet, Illinois, stating that she had an old photograph of Lucy in her possession and wanted to reunite it with her family. I thought, "four years ago; someone else probably contacted Marge Rice for the photo by now. And maybe Marge's email address has changed." I decided to send her an email anyway, because one never knows for sure until one tries. Well, Marge Rice wrote me back right away with the good news that she still had the photo and would be happy to send it to me for a nominal price, enought to cover her costs! The Lovely One and I were delighted to be sure, and we sent a check to Marge right away.

Today, the picture arrived in the mail. It was taken around 1860 at the Benjamin Lochman Photographic Gallery in Allentown, Pennsylvania. Marge purchased it from an antique dealer in Georgetown, Texas about 6 years ago. Marge Rice is a remarkable lady, who makes a hobby of reuniting old photos with their families. According to an article about her, which she sent with the photo, she has sent over 1,332 photos to 969 people since 2000. The gratitude expressed by the families, who receive these wonderful images, fills her with happiness. Now I have custody of this unique treasure.

We still have searching to do on this family. Lucy died sometime before 1880, because her husband Isaac is described as a widower on the 1880 census of Camden, New Jersey. But now, thanks to the kindness and thoughtfulness of Marge Rice, I can connect an image with the name of Lucy Hutchinson Van Sciver.