My great Aunt, the daughter of Ernest Ray Taftand Hortense Nason, has given me agreat copy of her Nason side as she remembered it.She's a very "with it" lady and I have no reason to suspect her info, although I'd like to document her remembrances.
She states that her mother, Hortense, had two brothers, William and Horace, and two sisters, Nell and Etta. She knew them all when she was young.There may have also been some other children, but she's not sure what happened to them.There was a discussion on how Hortense didn't get along too well with her stepmother, and a family story about how there may have been some Indian blood in the family.She remembers that Uncle William definitely looked indian.She also definitely remembers Hortense telling her about her mother Elizabeth Downs who "died young", but whom she thought was born in Portsmouth (which is pretty close to Sommersworth).
I did find Albert and Hortense in the 1900 census in Upton and it stated that Albert was a widower and Horense was only 4, which matches my info for my direct line, but I too cannot find any information about the "mystery siblings" to Hortense.Now that you say that Clara Towle had two children by her first marriage and it looks like she was also married to a Taft (ie: one child was Ray Taft), I'm wondering if my great-aunt's recollections of Uncles and Aunts were somehow related to the Taft side and not the Nason side.Taft's are thick-as-thieves in Upton so they may have been relatives of Clara and/or cousins of Ray that she remembers as Uncles.
Thanks for the background on Albert and Elizabeth!