Jacob ORMSBEE, b. 21 Jun 1806 in Pompey, Onondaga, NY, married first to Sabra TOWERS, b. 22 Aug 1805 in Schaghticoke, Rensselaer, NY, in about 1824 in New York state, likely in Baldwinsville, Manlius, or even in Syracuse.
Sabra died 13 Aug 1869, aged 63, in Syracuse, and is buried in the family plot (ORMSBEE-GRAVES) at Oakwood Cemetery, Onondaga, New York.
In December 1869, only 4 months after his wife's death, Jacob, a successful builder/carpenter, married a much younger woman, Emily.
Jacob, 68, and Emily, 40, are found on the 1870 Census for Syracuse, Onondaga, NY, with another woman, Sarah Hurd, aged 69 - her mother. Both Emily and Sarah note they were born in Vermont, and can be found living in Syracuse on earlier Censuses, where there is stated relationship of mother-daughter. Emily also had a son, Henry Lafayette Palmer, named after her 1st husband, Lafayette Palmer, who seems to have died shortly after/around the time their son was born. He does not show up on the 1870 Census. On this 1870 Census, Emily shows she owns real estate [independent of Jacob] and personal value, similar to her new husband. The Lucius Ormsby below, is Jacob & Sabra's son.
Something happened in the next 10 years, however, as we look at the 1880 Census for Syracuse.
As you can see, Emily, now aged 53, has a tick in the Health section column for "Idiotic". That would likely refer to her being unable to speak/converse, or having a severe brain injury of some sort. A severe stroke might have caused this description, as well. There was a scratch-out in the column of "insane". Oh dear.
Living with Jacob and Emily is a Housekeeper, Hannah Coon, aged 64, labelled "Sister" - which would be sister to the Head of House, Jacob. This is a new person for the Ormsbee line, and I can hardly wait to research more about Hannah. (Sidebar: I found Hannah married to Henry James Coon, with 5 children including only son James; both Hannah and James are buried in Oakwood Cemetery in the Ormsbee-Graves plot - confirming her relationship with Jacob. However there is no death/burial date for either person. Perhaps they are simply listed on a memorial plaque?)
Unfortunately, the 1890 Census is not available to see if Emily is alive at that time. In addition, I have been unable to confirm the death of Emily Ormsbee/Ormsby so far.
Jacob died 29 Mar 1893, aged 86, in Syracuse, and was buried at Oakwood cemetery in the family plot ORMSBEE-GRAVES. There is a long obituary glued into my Terwilliger Souvenir Album, plus other little notes about his death. Absolutely nothing is said of either wife. I might assume therefore, that Emily died in the years between 1880-1893. She is not buried in the family plot at Oakwood Cemetery, according to the Burial Registration Book.
A mystery. Who was Emily? Why did he marry such a much-younger wife only a few months after his first wife died, after 45 years of marriage? Did he know her and her family, perhaps do business with them? And why on earth was she NOT buried in the same family plot as Jacob, her husband? I have many questions and no answers at all.
Obviously if you have any information about Emily Hurd, her death, her family of origin, or where she may be buried, I would be very pleased to receive this. You may send details through my email at bottom of page, or in the Comments section below.