The Livengoods are Rick’s father’s paternal ancestors. Rick’s grandfather is Donald Reamer Livengood, son of Willard Elmer Livengood and Martha Arila Reamer.
Donald Livengood was born in Elkhart, Indiana.
Donald served in World War I, and at the end of the war he moved to Jamestown, New York, where he met and married Jeanette C. Hayward.
Donald and Jeanette had two sons: Robert (Rick’s father) and Donald Jr. Donald and Jeanette apparently divorced sometime between 1932 and 1935. Donald remarried (his second wife was named Frances, middle initial “K”). Donald died in Florida in 1975.
Livengoods and Whittigs in the 19th century
Willard’s Livengood ancestors were John (his father), George (grandfather), and Henry (great-grandfather). George and Henry were farmers living in Ohio. In about 1835 they migrated from Ohio to Elkhart, Indiana.
Willard’s mother was Catharine Whittig, daughter of Frederick Wittig (the spelling of the surname was changed over time). Frederick was a German immigrant who arrived in the United States at Portsmouth, Virginia, in 1821.
Frederick and his wife, Barbara, lived in Ohio, where all of their children except the youngest were born. In about 1835 Frederick and his family also migrated to Elkhart, Indiana, where they lived on a 160-acre farm.
John Livengood and Catharine Whittig, Willard’s parents, met and married in Elkhart, Indiana, in 1853, when he was 36 and she was 24.
Were John and Abraham Livengood cousins, or only brothers-in-law?
An interesting mystery in the Livengood family is the relationship between John (Willard’s father) and Abraham Livengood, whose second wife was John’s mother’s sister.
It’s clear that John and Abraham were brothers-in-law who married two Whittig sisters (Mary and Catharine), but did they also have a blood relationship (both having the same surname and similar migration histories)? So far the answer to that question is not clear.
Abraham Livengood, who also migrated from Ohio and settled in Elkhart, Indiana, was the better-known of the two Livengoods. He has been written up in a number of historical documents about the history of Elkhart, and he is often referred to as “one of the Elkhart pioneers.”
- Whittig, Wittig
Unanswered questions about the Livengoods
- Jeanette and Donald were apparently divorced sometime between 1932 and 1935. What was the actual year of that event?
- Jeanette’s second husband’s surname was McInerney (he was known as “Mac”). What was his actual given name? At some point they moved to Santa Clara County, California, and they both died there in the early 1970s. What are the details of their marriage, move, and death?
- Donald’s second wife was Frances (middle initial “K”). What was her maiden name and prior husband’s surname? Did she and her first husband have any children?
- Were John and Abraham Livengood blood relatives (other than being brothers-in-law)?
- Who was the Livengood immigrant ancestor, and where was he/she born?