Can I just tell you that I love calling funeral homes, cemetery offices and county death record offices?
Not once have I ever encountered anything other than a helpful, kind employee when I've made the effort to look up a number and get on the horn.
One lady in South Carolina (SWEET accent) offered to go outside in the snow one January day and take a picture of my relative's headstone and email it to me.
Bless you, employees. We geeks couldn't do it without you.
Now on to today's character - my great uncle Burt Damon Bathrick*. Never married as far as I can see, Burt lived what must have been a colorful life. Born in 1863 in upstate New York to Lysander and Phoebe (who died when he was seven years old), the youngest child by fifteen years - Burt made his way west with his father and landed in Great Falls, Montana. (Lysander ended up in Wyoming.)
I'm trying not to mix him up with a Bert Bathrick, who was born five years earlier and died in 1923.
My uncle Burt held a variety of jobs, from railway laborer to beer hall employee to novelty salesman. Just guessing from the occupations he chose, he is an adventurous, hardworking, gregarious, people-loving soul, who loved his adopted city but wasn't much for sticking around in the same job. He never owned a home, always lived at boarding houses, which to me says he preferred to take life one day at a time.
I'm about to call Cascade county and see if he did stick around long enough to be buried there. What's funny is, I find myself mentally stuck in the 1980s way of genealogy-ing sometimes... "So Great Falls, huh... it would be so fun to go there, but it's so far away..."
Then I remember "when" I am. In these days of instant access to telephone numbers listed online, help is only a few clicks and a phone call away.
Blessings abound :)
*Why Burt today? The 1940 Census, of course. I did an individual search on PAF using my ancestors filter (grandparents and aunts and uncles only) and filtered them by individuals born in the 1840-1941 birth range, so I didn't miss anyone. Three hundred and ninety-six people I'm looking up. I've already found new family members all over the place. Yay :)