Thanks for the reply!Can I ask your relation to the Orell line?
I've studied my Walter Orell line for over a decade, and have lots of the original documentation.Angelina Collard appears on Walter Smith Orell's death certificate in 1962 - listed as his mother. He is listed as being born on March 15 1886 in Flushing, NY, just as he is listed on his WWI draft card and his WW2 draft card as being born on that date in Flushing, NY.
Walter R is my grandfather, Walter Raymond Orell.
Walter Smith Orell's first wife was Maud "Ida May" Slote, whom he married in 1907 or 1908.She is the mother of both Walter and Gladys.She died at a very young age of heart failure.
Clementine was Clementine O. Weslowski, whom he married in 1917 in Philadelphia - I've found record of the marriage.I am researching her presently.
Thressie J.(Theresa) Hall was his third wife, whom he lived with until his death.I knew her as a child.She was nothing short of wonderful.
I've worked exhaustively trying to find record of Walter Smith Orell before the 1910 census, where he first appears married to Ida may with son Walter at age 24 (listed as being born in 1883, though, strangely) and have found none still.
A week ago, I stumbled upon a fascinating birth record:a child born on March 15 1886 (check), with a mother named Angelina Collard (check) in Flushing, NY (check).Frankly, that's far too much of a coincidence, considering there is no record of any Walter Orell being born anywhere near that time in Flushing, NYC, or anywhere.
Even more interestingly, the child listed on the birth certificate, David E. McLaren, seems to have disappeared from any public record after 1903 (seven years before Walter Smith Orell seems to appear from nowhere in Lancaster, PA.
Other clues: Walter S. Orell worked with the railroads as a machinist his whole life, and David E. Mclaren's father is listed as a Locomotive Engineeer.
My mother often spoke of Walter R. Orell's unwillingness to discuss the family history, his grandfather, etc.I think that there could be a reason for that? Perhaps David E. McLaren changed his identity for a particular reason.
My next steps will be to search Lancaster City directories for the years prior to 1910 to see how early Walter appears, trying to narrow down the gap between 1903 and 1908.I also will study Angeline (Collard) McLaren's death record, which has been ordered. Finally, I hope to make contact the descendants of David E. McLaren's father, David McLaren. Since David E. had many siblings, I'm sure some are out there....