Pearce-Elliott Families


As with many things, I didn't intend to get involved with genealogy, at least not for genealogy's sake. My father died when I was only one year old, and so I never knew him, or much about him. When I got into my fiftys, it began to occur to me that I might have some genetic health problems, and it might pay to look into my ancestor's health histories. So, I vowed when I retired that I would do that.

My mother's side, the Heaton-Haynes, were well documented and had no noticable heriditary diseases. With a few early exceptions, they lived to old age with no serious health problems. On my father's side, however, I had very little to go on - just his father's name, Gus Pearce, Gus's wife's name Alma Elliott, and the fact that they lived in Carbondale, Illinois. There was some history of the Elliotts, but my main concern was to find Gus, and know his health history.

So, when I retired, I went in search of Grandpa Gus. My mother told me she thought he came from Louisiana, and that when he left Alma he went to New Jersey. One should always believe one's mother.....

I looked for an Augustus Pearce on the Internet and came up with a likely family in Massachusetts.... that was all.... no one in Louisiana.... So, I told my mother she was wrong, and Gus probably came from Massachusetts. Don't ever tell your mother she was wrong......

After much work at doing genealogy, probably a year after I started looking for Gus, I came across a census document that listed an Augustus Rice Pearce as living with a family in New Orleans. I posted a query, and a WorldConnect file, and along came several responses telling me about Gus and his relatives. One contact told me about a book, "Three Pioneer Families of Rapides Parish, Louisiana", that not only had a long history of the Louisiana Pearces, but mentioned Augustus Rice Pearce by name, and gave a few facts about him that firmly established our relationship. I later tracked Gus to Reno, Nevada, where he died at the age of 83 in 1967. So, my father's side of the family had an enviable health record, and I could breathe a little easier. But, by this time, I was absolutely hooked on genealogy..... for genealogy's sake, and I had my Pearce family history firmly documented. You'll find it all in the Pearce History section of this website.

The 1930 census just came out, and guess what? Gus is with his second wife in New Jersey. Moral of the story..... always listen to your mother.

Jim Pearce