Aunt June was a lively one full of smiles and energy when I came to observe her in the late 1950’s. Our family would take my father’s two week vacations annually and head to Seattle where she, her sister and mother lived. Those vacations started in the early 1950’s. It really wasn't until I was in high school that I appreciated her sense of adventure. One day when both my parents were at work and it was time for me to attend high school she suggested that I drive there. Never having driven a car before how could I say no!! Off we went and you can read here that it was an experience I have carried for almost 60 years. Aunt June’s start to life was an adventure; however, it was an adventure filled with challenges.
June’s delayed Birth Certificate listed her birth as 7 July 1909 in St. Louis, MO.[i] In the delayed birth document June claims her father to be August Vaillant (born in New York) and mother Mary Branc (born in France).[ii] Before she was 10 years old she welcomed a new sister, Pauline[iii], a new brother, Benjamin[iv], a visit from her Uncle Vincenzo[v] and a new sister, Gloria[vi]. The events around Gloria indicate that the family relocated from St. Louis, MO[vii] Gloria’s Death Certificate says she was born in Chicago and we do know that she died there in early 1917. So June experienced relocation (St. Louis to Chicago) and a family death (Gloria) before her 10th birthday.
June experienced being abandoned by her father before her 10th birthday. It appears that “August” who registers for the World War I draft on 12 September 1918 with a wife Mary recorded and files his Intention for Naturalization on 2 April 1919 as an unmarried male left his wife and three small children to strike out on his own.
In 1920, June is living with her mother and sister and brother at 1251 Oregon Avenue in Chicago.[viii] Her mother Mary is listed as a 38 year old widow who immigrated in 1903 and is a naturalized citizen. Mary is working as a finisher at a tailor house[ix] and is able to speak English.[x] I think that as the oldest child, June had to take on much responsibility. Her education is taking place at McLaren School located at 1500 Flournoy Street where she is registered as Josephine F. Veneziano.[xi] She continues at McKinley High School located at 2040 W. Adams Street where on 28 January 1925 she completes a two year vocational course in Stenography. She is 15 and half years old. Those years between August leaving the family and June's ability to work were tough. Dinner would be a piece of bread with tomato paste spread on it.
She works as a Stenographer for the J. H. Day Company[xii] by 1928 and resides at 4843 Palmer.[xiii] June is at 4843 Palmer for the 1930 census along with her mother and siblings.[xiv] She is recorded as June a 20 year old white female single who was born in Missouri and works in the office of a manufacturing company.[xv]
Along with her sister Pauline, June is initiated into the Delta Zeta Chi Sorority[xvi] on 23 January 1931.[xvii] Their residence is listed as 4843 Palmer. In 1933 June and the family would move to 4105 Fletcher where they would remain until 1940 or a little later. The Chicago Telephone Books would list her as June Vaillant, phone number PAL 7021.[xviii]
A month before her 27th birthday, June marries Michael J. Poeltl, Jr. on the 6th of June, 1936.[xix] “Mikey” was the love of June’s life as I heard many times in family conversations. Unfortunately, he would die of either cancer or TB about the 16th of April 1940.[xx]
On 5 January 1937, in the application for a social security account number Josephine Veneziano Poeltl living at 4105 Fletcher Street in Chicago, Illinois and working for the J. H. Day Company applies as a 27 year old whose birth date is July, 7, 1909 in St. Louis, MO and father was August Veneziano and mother Marion Branca. June is a female, white and signs her application Josephine Veneziano Poeltl. It is interesting to note that after taking on the Vaillant surname in the summer of 1928 she uses her birth surname of Veneziano for this government document![xxi]
In the 1940 Federal Census taken on 7 April 1940, June is listed as Mrs. Michael Poeltl and the daughter of Mary. June is a female, white 30 year old married who has completed three years of high school. She was born in Missouri. She has lived in the same house in 1935. She has worked for 40 hours March 24-30, 1940. She is listed as stenography in machinery mfg. working 52 hours and earning $1100. The person providing the information is her sister Pauline. June is listed at 4105 Fletcher in the June 1940 Bell Telephone Directory at page 1393 as Miss June Vaillant.
When Francisco Vaillant[xxii] registers for the World War II Draft in 1942, he cites Mrs. M. J Poeltl at 6227 N. Leader in Chicago as the person who will always know his address.
It appears that June moves to Seattle by 23 July 1943 when she makes an application for a Delayed Birth Certificate with the State of Missouri as that date and place is one of the documents she cites in her application. She certainly is in Seattle as she gives her address as 3205 15th W on the 14th of December in her marriage to Bernard Church Larrabee[xxiii]. Bernard is living at 1623 Taylor. They are married by Joseph G Weber a Justice of the Peace at 1230 E 89th Street at 10:25 P.M.! This marriage would last until 1948.
June would remain in Seattle until her death the 8th of March 1973 at the age of 63 from heart disease complications.[xxiv] The informant is her daughter who states June’s father was August Vaillant and mother Mary Branc. June was widowed and worked as a secretary in the insurance business. June died at Ballard Community Hospital and was buried at Calvary Cemetery in Seattle on March 12, 1973.
She would have been in the same home for 15 years. In her Last Will and Testament she directs all her debts and funeral expenses be paid, that her real and personal property go to her sister Pauline if she survives her (she does) otherwise to her daughter and the executrix be her sister or in the case of her demise her brother Benjamin or his wife Virginia. The executrix or executor can act freely and without bond in settling her estate. The will was signed on the 8th day of February 1973.[xxv]
What I recall of this period is the surprise I had at the “estate” of June and Pauline. These two sisters, one could almost say joined at the hip they had been together so long, had what appeared as modest jobs as secretaries; HOWEVER, they were extremely astute business women flipping houses (as we call it now) and keeping houses as rentals. As I recall there were some 30+ properties that needed to be sold to settle the estate. That is another story!
[i] State of Missouri, City of Jefferson, State Board of Health of Missouri, Bureau of Vital Statistics, Delayed or Special Certificate of Birth, Number 246584, file February 8, 1944 and approved February 23, 1944, copy obtained July 7, 2000.
[ii] Not trueJJ
[iii] Pauline VENEZIANO Vaillant O’Rourke 2 April 1911 – 7 November 1974.
[iv] Benjamin VENEZIANO Vaillant 24 May 1913 – 24 December 2002.
[v] Vincenzo VENEZIANO arrives in New York on 22 October 1913 with his going to see his brother Agostino at 901 Franklin. See separate blog for more details.
[vi] Gloria VENEZIANO 29 September 1915 – 5 February 1917
[vii] See separate blog about Finding Gloria.
[viii] 1920 Federal Census, Chicago, Cook, Illinois, Enumeration District 1070, Sheet 15A, Lines 47-50 at ancestry.com assessed 20 June 2012.
[x] Unfortunately we do not know who supplied the information to the enumerator. The family surname in the 1920 Census is spelled “Venezina” and both parents are listed as born in Italy. This will all change by 1930.
[xi] There was several years ago a website listing Chicago graduates. The site is no longer available-drats!
“Today’s powder mixing processing technology was born and driven to world prominence by John Howard Day, in 1887.
His efforts created the world recognized, J.H. Day Company, producing what is called today a “Ribbon Blender”. J.H. Day’s products, frequently shortened to simply “Day” have been sold worldwide for more than 100 years, becoming the backbone for basic powder processing in the western hemisphere.
J.H. Day Company, also known as Day Mixing, being located in Cincinnati, Ohio was ideally situated servicing the dramatically growing food, chemical and pharmaceutical industries of the mid to late 1900’s. The Ribbon Blender and Day became synonymous because of the thousands of units sold, clearly superior engineering design, reliability and Day’s outstanding service provided to customers.
During this same time frame, another well-known American company – Littleford Bros., expanding upon their 100+ year Cincinnati industrial fabricating background, entered the process equipment industry at the forefront of high speed sophisticated mixing, drying and reacting for their customer’s processing applications.
In 1981 Littleford Bros. acquired the J.H. Day Company. This blend of two great companies – created a new company capable of identifying process solutions, understanding customer’s needs and proving process refinements in their extensive lab. This new company’s mission “Where Processing Ideas Become Reality” created the premier name in the industry – Littleford Day.
The new company leads in the manufacturing of high quality, price effective processing and plastic equipment while providing superb world class after sales service with more experience than any anyone in the world. Continuing the century + of traditions of total excellence, Littleford Day proudly presents the Day Ribbon Blender.”
[xiii] The Lakeside Annual Directory of the City of Chicago.
[xiv] 1930 Federal Census, Chicago, Cook Illinois, Enumeration District 16-1309, Sheet 1B, lines 54-57 at ancestry.com assessed 20 June 2012. And here is where the story gets interesting as the family is listed as “Vaillant” with the mother Mary born in France and immigrating in 1905 and is a naturalized citizen. The children’s birthplace remains as Missouri. This will be the subject of a separate blog!
[xv] Pauline is 19 years old and working in the office of an electrical company.
[xvi] http://www.deltathetachi.org/aboutus.html. “This Sorority is a non-profit fraternal corporation. Its purpose is to promote cultural education, to foster personal development and good citizenship, to form a nation-wide fellowship, to attain a broader outlook and enjoyment of contact with those of similar purposes and ideals… Delta Theta Chi Sorority was originally organized in 1920 in Chicago. Six of the seven charter members are known: Hope Barkley of Radcliff College, Cambridge, MA; Esther Cejnar of the University of Nebraska; Miriam Brewer of Northwestern University in Evanston, IL; Edith McKay of the University of Montana; Myrtle Raymond of the University of Nevada and Lela Scopes of the University of Chicago.
By 1930 the rapid growth of our Sorority warranted a national entity and the officers applied to the State of
Delaware, where most sororities and fraternities are incorporated, for a state charter granting national
[xvii] Southtown Economist, Chicago, Illinois, Friday, January 23, 1931, page 4 at Newspaper Archives (http://newspaperarchive.com/us/illinois/chicago/southtown-economist/1931/01-23/page-4?tag=vaillant&rtserp=tags/?psi=37&pci=7&ndt=by&py=1930&pey=1932&pl=vaillant) assessed 6 November 2014 because I did not do this initially!
[xviii] Illinois Bell Telephone Directory, September 1933 on page 1137, June 1934 on page 1155, December 1935 on page 1220, September 1936 on page 1260, June 1937 on page 1295, December 1938 on page 1313 and September 1939 on page 1335 viewed at the California Genealogical Society, 2201 Broadway, LL2 in Oakland, CA 94612 (www.californiaancestors.org) on site.
[xix] State of Illinois, Cook County, Marriage License and return, document numbered 1490913.
[xx] Finding his death record remains challenging. He is buried at St. Joseph Cemetery in River Grove, Cook, Illinois in Lot E1/2 of 338, Section KK.
[xxi] U. S. Social Security Act, Application for Account Number, dated Jan, 5, 1937, Copy obtained from SSA under FOIA.
[xxii] See separate blog about Francisco Vaillant
[xxiii] Bernard Church Larrabee 30 April 1894 – 4 April 1965. He was previously married and divorced. His middle name was his mother’s surname.
[xxiv] Washington State Department of Social and Health Services, Health Services Division, Bureau of Vital Statistics, Certificate of Death, number 2097, copy obtained November 3, 2000.
[xxv] Superior Court of Washington for King County, file number E214052, Order establishing the will filed 3-14-73 and a new administrator appointed 12 November 1974 (after sister Pauline’s death).