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Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Bart and Ellen (Welch) Mitchell

Bart was the 2nd son and the 8th child of Bartley and Mary. He spent a good portion of his life in Iowa, moving sometime between 1925 and 1930 to San Diego, California.
He married Ellen Regina Welch in Iowa about 1910, together they had 5 children (2 boys, 3 girls) and all were born in Iowa.  Ellen was the 4th child out of 5 born to James Welch and Many Anne Carroll. Ellen died in San Diego County, and Bart died in Sonoma County many years later.
The oldest of the Mitchell children was Mary Helen. She married Harold Beck. Since Harold was also born in Iowa, it is really difficult to say when or where they married since I have not found a marriage record as of this post. However, since their oldest child (out of five children) was born in California, I think it's likely they married there. Mary Helen died in 1987 in San Bernardino County,  while Harold had died prior, in 1963 in Riverside County. Harold had two children from a prior marriage.
Update: Harold's first marriage in 1932 to Thelma Auspaugh produced 2 children - Robert and William. Both boys were born in California.  I think it's safe to assume that Harold and second wife, Mary Helen Mitchell, were married in California.
Bartholomew Carroll was the couple's first son, second child. The 1940 Federal Census has his wife as Mary A, but his grave marker has the name Amy E along with his name. Amy has no dates on the marker. A public records search has Bart and Amy connected,  along with two females and 3 males connected to either or both names. This, essentially still leaves his family up in the air and more research will need to be done for answers.
Updade: Bart C. Mitchell (Bud) had married Mary Aline Chaves in Los Angeles County in 1936. It is unknown if they had any children, as I have been unable to find any for them. It is also unknown when they divorced.  Mary was the daughter of Portugal immigrants, Joseph F and Mary Chaves. She had at least one sibling - a sister, Lillian. Mary died in San Bernardino County in 1990.
Rita Ann Ellen was Bartley and Ellen's second daughter, third child. Her first marriage to Robert Arnold Snyder, in 1937,  ended in divorce. Her second marriage, to Bernard Francis Walther, in 1952, lasted until his death in 1961. Bernard was career military (Navy), retiring as a Lieutenant.  Bernard served on various Navy submarines during World War II, including the USS Cuttlefish, USS Cachalot, and the USS Whale.  Bernard had a previous marriage to Agnes Rita Ybarronda, but neither of his marriages produced any children. Bernard is buried in Fort Rosecrans Cemetery, San Diego. Rita had reserved the right to be buried alongside her husband, but there is no indication that she followed through with that plan. Rita Ann died in 1997 and chose to have her remains donated to science.
Rocky (Welch James) was the second to the last child born to Bartley and Ellen. His first marriage to Ester Bjorkman, 1940, in Iowa produced 4 sons. His second marriage, 1971, in Reno to German born Johanna Elizabeth (maiden name unknown) Hitson produced no children. 
Johanna arrived in the U.S. in 1959 a year after marrying Ken Hitson, a military soldier in the U.S. Army. Johanna had 2 daughters, both born prior to her marriage to Hitson, who carred the Hitson name. Johanna petitioned for naturalization in Tennessee. 
Rocky died in 1987. I have found no death record for Johanna, but since she was born in 1929, it is possible she is still amongst the living. 
Betty Lou was the youngest of Bartley and Ellen's children. Betty Lou had married LeRoy Gilmore and had one child, a daughter named Nancy Ellen. Her second marriage to William Connoley produced no children. Both marriages ended in divorce. It was Betty Lou's obituary that gleaned the most information about Rocky and his siblings. It is re-produced below:

    July 27 

Betty Lou Connoley 

Longtime Irvine resident Betty Lou Connoley died July 

20 after a brief illness. She was 76. 

A memorial mass will be celebrated Friday, July 28, at 10

 a.m. at San Francisco Solano Catholic Church, 22082 

Antonio Parkway, Rancho Santa Margarita. A gathering 

for family and friends will follow. 

Mrs. Connoley was born Jan. 19, 1924, in Vail, Iowa, to 

Ellen and Bart Mitchell. She was the youngest of five 

children. In her youth the family moved to San Diego. 

Betty Lou married Roy Gilmore in 1948. She worked as 

an interior decorator in San Diego for many years. She 

and Roy had one daughter, Nancy Ellen Gilmore. 

She and Mr. Gilmore divorced and she later married Bill 

Connoley of San Diego. She moved to Orange County in 

the 1970s and lived in Rancho San Joaquin in Irvine for 

about 15 years. She owned an interior decorating shop, 

"Betty Lou Interiors," in Corona Del Mar. 

"She loved her work and was so happy with her own 

shop," said her niece Vicky Roberts. 

After selling her business she worked part-time for CPA 

Clifford Wayne until a few years ago. 

Mrs. Connoley was a vivacious woman who loved to 

share her warm smile and laughter with everyone she 

came in contact with. "Her love and laughter made Betty 

Lou the special person that she was," said her niece. 

"She was very outgoing, always the life of the party and 

everyone liked to be around her." 

Also a caring person, she went to San Diego to care for 

her sister, Rita Ann Walther, in her final illness.

She also lost her beloved daughter, Nancy, last year.

"The love of her life was her daughter," commented her


She also attended a local Catholic Church. 

Mrs. Connoley was preceded in death by her parents;

her daughter, Nancy Ellen Gilmore Doyle in 1999; her

two sisters Mary Helen Beck and Rita Ann Walther; her 

two brothers Bart Mitchell and Welch Mitchell. 

She is survived by her niece, Vicki Roberts of Fruita,

Colo.; her nephews, Bill Beck of Bandon, Ore., John 

Beck of San Juan Capistrano, and Jerry Beck of Laguna 

Hills, and many great nephews and great nieces

At her request her body was donated to Loma Linda

University Medical Center in Loma Linda for medical

research, as were her two sisters Mary Helen and Rita 

Ann, her brother-in-law, Harold Beck, and her niece, 

Joan Ellen Beck Critzman.

 Above is the marriage license and certificate record for Rita Ann's first marriage to Robert Snyder. To the left is her marriage certificate to Bernard Walther.

 The photograph on the right is of Mary Alina Chaves, first wife of Bud (Bart C. Mitchell). The photograph is from a school yearbook in 1933.

 The two page document to the left is the marriage certificate of Bart C. Mitchell's first marriage to Mary Alina Chaves. Notice that Bud reported his middle name as Charles instead of Carrol.

Isn't it funny how a photograph can reveal information unknowingly? The photograph below was placed in my files under the father of Bud - Bartley. The handwritten description on the photo says "Father, Mary, Bobby, Bud". When I saw that it all clicked into place. Bud and Mary had a son, Robert. The photograph obiviously is of his Christening. This puts into place some of the names in the public records associated with Bud.