Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Wednesday's Children~Three Years, Three Infants, Three Deaths

Olympic Mill Village
Columbia, South Carolina 

University of South Carolina South Caroliniana Library, Works Progress Administration photograph collection: South Carolina places: 193u-194u., digital image , South Carolina Digital Library ( accessed 14 Nov. 2017,  “Olympia Mill Village Street with Houses”, no. wpapl820, citing Federal Writer’s Project (S.C.), [Columbia, S.C.: Olympia Mill], South Caroliniana Library, University of South Carolina.

In 1926 my maternal great grandparents William Treadford Roberts (1894-1959) and Beulah Mae (Price) Roberts (1897-1980) were living in the Olympic Mill Village in Columbia, Richland, South Carolina.
In April they welcomed their 10th child, Edith Marie into their family. Edith was not to be with the family long. In August she came down with pneumonia and died on the 21st. William and Beulah's four month old baby girl was buried in an unmarked grave in the cemetery provided for it's workers 
at the mill. 

Death Certificate of Edith Marie Roberts
South Carolina Department of Archives and History,South Carolina, Death Records, 1821-1961” database, Ancestry ( accessed 19 Dec. 2016), entry for Edith Marie Roberts, certificate number 15453 (1926).

Obituary for Edith Marie Roberts
“Funeral Services Held for Roberts Child” The State (South Carolina), 28 April 1926, p. 2, col. 2, digital images, Newsbank ( accessed 14 Nov. 2017)

Information provided in letters and interviews indicate another daughter, child 11 was born 21 February 1927. Baby Girl Roberts died the same day. A search for a death record or obituary has not been successful. 

Then in March of 1928, Willie was born. The 12th of William and Beulah's children passed away in July. While information written by family members says the little boy's name was William Treadford, Jr. , his death certificate says Willie Theodore Roberts.
Heart wrenching is the cause of death for little Willie. Emaciation. Secondary cause? Improper feeding.  There is no way to know how this happened to poor Willie. Did he have a problem nursing? Was his mother worn out from the past births? Was there a lack of money to supply formula? Was it even available to the mill families? The Dr. reports only seeing Willie the day of his death.

Death Certificate
Willie Roberts

South Carolina Department of Archives and History,South Carolina, Death Records, 1821-1961” database, Ancestry ( accessed 21 Dec. 2016), entry for Willie Theodore Roberts , certificate number 13317 (1928).

Like his older sister Edith and most likely the unarmed baby girl, Willie was buried in the Olympia cemetery without a marker.

Obituary for Willie Roberts
“Infant's Funeral” The State (South Carolina), 05 July 1928, p. 2, col. 6, digital images, Newsbank ( accessed 13 Nov. 2017)

Three babies in three years. None living past 4 months old. Tragic. 

Who are the Wednesday's children in your family tree? Tell their stories so they are not forgotten.

Thanks for stopping by!
Helping you climb your family tree,


  1. Thee tragedy continued when they lost 3 so s in WWII, including my grandfather. So? Out of her 12 children, my great grandmother buried 6. Can't even imagine!