While at the Genealogical Forum of Oregon library, in Portland, Multnomah County, Oregon, I heard a lady say that she had found a Marriage Record that was missing the names of the bride and groom. She was working on a project, being done by a few members of GFO, to provide an index to each of the large, original Marriage Record books given to the library by Multnomah County. She was working in Book 32, on page 228, for the period of 1912, and the record was stamped Marriage License number 23836.
I was intrigued by this announcement and went over to look at the actual record. The county clerk had filled in all the information for the Marriage Record above and below where the names of the bride and groom were to be written, but forgotten to add their name. The names of the bride and groom was the most important information.
The information for the Marriage Record books is entered by the county clerk when the county receives back what some people may call the "marriage return."Marriages in this book are listed in order by the Marriage License Number. On the Marriage Record, under the place where the groom's name would have been listed show that he was from Clackamas County. Under where the bride's name would have been listed showed she was from Multnomah County.
There is another book called the Marriage Affidavits and its information is also listed in order by the Marriage License Number. This Marriage Affidavits book is also at the GFO library. I found the Affidavits book for the time period of 1912 and looked for the Marriage License #23836. I found the names of the bride and groom within a few minutes. They were as follows:
Lillian HUGHES, over the age of 18 years to wit: about 29 years.
M. J. CONLEY, over the age of 21, to wit: about 32 years.
The Marriage Record book listed the date of the marriage license and the date of the marriage as both being 26 Sept. 1912.
The Marriage Affidavit book showed "Married by" and the written name looked like "A. WILLEBRAND." From the Marriage Record book, it shows they were married by a Catholic Priest at St. Johns Pars. At the end of this marriage record, where it shows "Witness my hand," it shows "A. Hillebrand Dean, St. Johns Church." There was no comma between Hillebrand and Dean.
Using the 1910 Oregon Census, I found a listing for an Anthony HILLEBRAND, as a Catholic clergyman, at an address of 912 Water St., in Oregon City, Clackamas County, Oregon. Checking additional resources, looking for a Catholic church with the name St. Johns, I found more than one, but one I thought might be the most probable was the one in Oregon City, Clackamas County. It was the St. John The Apostle Catholic Church. Information on the internet about this church showed its history and that it was active since 1846. It had moved from its original location of 10th and Water streets to its present location at 4th and Center. There was a Parish Church, a School and Administration offices. Therefore, could it be possible that Anthony HILLEBRAND was the "Dean" at the school? I sent an e-mail to this Catholic church, asking about the marriage and the name of the Anthony HILLEBRAND as a priest in 1912. My e-mail request was answered by the Church Secretary. She confirmed they had a record of this marriage in 1912 and also that the church had a "Monsignor A. Hildebrand" at the Church at that time. She also gave a middle initial of "N" for Lillian HUGHES. [This middle initial for Lillian as an "N." was listed as "M." in both the 1920 and 1930 Federal Census records.]
I checked the original Multnomah County Marriage License Index, also given to the GFO library by the County, to find the bride and groom listed. The Index book gave one additional piece of information about the groom. It listed him as Martin J. CONLEY. Having his first name makes it easier for anyone to look for and find him in other records like census, land, military, newspaper, etc.
The person making the Affidavit was a C. R. Hansen and he listed his address as 26 N 2nd. He said he knew Lillian HUGHES and that there was "no legal impediment to the marriage."
The two witnessess to the marriage, were listed in the Marriage Record book as May LUCAS and a name that looked like C. R. HUNSINGER. This second name could be the same as C. R. HANSEN who was listed in the Marriage Affidavit book. [If you look close at the written last name, he could have written the fact that he was a "Jr" without picking up the ink pen. Sometimes an "a" looks like a "u" when written in longhand.]
A search of the Portland City Directory for 1912, page 671, showed a person named Chas R. HANSEN Jr. who had a business at 26 2nd N. So it is possible that the name written and looking like HUNSINGER could be HANSEN JR, if he didn't lift his pen when he added "Jr"? I looked for Martin CONLEY and Lillian HUGHES in the 1912 Portland City Directory, but didn't find them with the addresses they gave in the Affidavit.
Sources for marriage in the Multnomah County original books:
Multnomah County Marriage Record book 32, page 228.
Multnomah County Marriage Affidavits book 17, page 79.
Multnomah County Marriage License Index, A - K, July 1910 - Oct. 1915, page 165 for CONLEY, and page 384 for HUGHES.
There is a WWI Draft Registration Card dated 9 Sept. 1918, for a Martin Joseph CONLEY, who registered with the Local Board in Pasco, Franklin County, Washington. He lists his occupaton as a Contractor, employed by himself and his nearest relative is his wife, Lillian. He is age 38 and was born 9 July 1880. This is on a card with the Serial Number 140 and Order Number 251.
The 1920 Census for Arlington, Gilliam County, Oregon, E.D. 42, Sheet 2B, lines 77-79. Martin J CONLEY, age 39, born in California, with parents both born in Ireland, and Martin is a contractor for the Highway. Lillian M. CONLEY, age 37, born in Illinois, with both parents born in England, no occupation listed. They have a son named James N. CONLEY, age 13, born in North Dakota. [The Ancestry indexer for this census record indexed Martin's surname as COULEY. Other possible spellings for this surname have been suggested by others as CONLEY and COULSY.]
In 1930 this couple and their son are listed as living in Portland, Multnamah County, Oregon, E.D. 26-319, Sheet 3B, lines 95-97. Martin J. CONLEY, wife Lillian M., and son James N. are all living together. Martin is listed as a Contractor, in the Building industry, and and his son, James, is listed as a Foreman, in the Building industry.
Anyone needing copies of the above listed Multnomah County Marriage Record, Marriage Affidavits and Marriage Index books can contact the Genealogical Forum of Oregon, in Portland, Oregon. They will make copies of the pages you need and charge you a small fee.
[Please note that it was decided the names of the bride and groom, which we identified from the Marriage Affidavit book, would NOT be included in the index being created for the Marriage Record book #32. This was because their names were missing from the original book #32 entry.]