The Tener Family

This is a journal kept by Dennis Holmes and friends concerning the Tener Family.
The links below will take you to the "Tener Blue Book" - "TENER: A History of the Family in France, Ireland and America"; and to a Finding Aid.

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Friday, May 20, 2005

Frances Margaret MILNE, NEE "TENER"

Frances M. Tener appears on page 72 of the Tener Blue Book. She was the daughter of Isaac William Tener (brother of John Kinley Tener I) and his wife Francis M. Tener, Nee Evans – the sister of John K. Tener I’s wife Mary.

The TBB tells us that Isaac died in California in 1898, and his wife died in 1897 (presumably in California). Furthermore, Francis M. Tener – b. 1846, d. 1910, married James P. MILNE who died in California in 1894.

By using a number of Internet resources, and one day trip to San Luis Obispo, California, I was able to learn the following with regard to Francis Milne, and her immediate family.

Francis Margaret Tener was born in Co. Tyrone, Ireland, on June 30, 1846. She is listed in the archives of Ellis Island and where we learn she immigrated to America in 1849. Closer examination of these on line records reveals that they arrived in the Port of Philadelphia on August 15, 1849 from Liverpool England – aboard the ship “Wyoming”. Frances was listed on the manifest – at three years of age. Her father Isaac was listed with an occupation – ‘engineer’.

There were a number of Tener’s – six in total, on that ship, ‘The Wyoming’, and, according to the manifest transcription, they included: Isaac – 40 yrs. of age; Mrs. ??? Tener – 40 yrs. of age; Margaret Tener – 11 yrs. of age; Sarah Tener – 9 yrs. of age; Francis – 3 yrs. of age; and “infant Tener” – “0” yrs. of age, and “unknown gender.”

I find it interesting, and noteworthy, that in April 1849 in Mary Tener's letters she wrote to her friend Mrs. Cole - of Dublin, that Mary was worried that Isaac and her sister and family would probably be leaving for America 'this summer'. Then, on June 16, 1849 Mary wrote again of their pending departure: “I expect Fanny & Children here on Monday week for some days—their last visit and our last meeting on this side Jordan. Isaac's auction is over and his beautiful things went for 'a Song.' It was grievous to see it.”
On June 25, 1849 Mary wrote that Isaac and family were leaving for Liverpool “next week”, and Isaac would have a lot of luggage. In addition, one of Mary’s sons would be helping; and she noted that Fanny would be busy with her four little ones – the youngest of which was “sucking” – nursing?

In July Mary again writes of saying goodbye to her sister Fanny. As they embraced, Mary wrote, “Clasped in each others arms, on our knees we tried to look up to heaven and mingled our hearts blood together.” A sad moment in the Tener family indeed.

Mary included in a lengthy letter on July 12, 1849, that “the Wyoming sails today.” From this we can fairly certainly deduce that the voyage took about 34 days – July 12 to August 15, 1849.

In describing the records that are available, tells the following about these immigration records cited above:
This data set contains alphabetical listings of approximately 180,000 individuals who arrived at Philadelphia from foreign ports between 1800 and 1850.
Partly in an effort to alleviate overcrowding of passenger ships, Congress enacted legislation (3 Stat. 489) on March 2, 1819 to regulate the transport of passengers in ships arriving from foreign ports. As a provision of this act, masters of such ships were required to submit a list of all passengers to the collector of customs in the district in which the ship arrived.
The legislation also provided that the collector of customs submit quarterly passenger list reports to the Secretary of State, who was, in turn, required to submit the information to Congress. The information was then published in the form of Congressional documents. A further Congressional act passed on May 7, 1874 repealed the legislative provision requiring collectors to send copies of passenger lists to the Secretary of State. Thereafter, collectors of customs were to send only statistical reports on passenger arrivals to the Department of Treasury.
These passenger lists are important primary sources of arrival data for the vast majority of immigrants to the United States in the nineteenth century. With the single exception of federal census records they are the largest, the most continuous, and the most uniform body of records of the entire country.(Michael Tepper. "American Passenger Arrival Records." Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Company, Inc. 1993. Page 64.)
The information collected in this Family Archive was extracted from the National Archives Microfilm Series M425, "Passenger Lists of Vessels Arriving at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 1800-1882." This microfilm series consists of baggage lists from 1800 through 1819 and original passenger lists from 1820 through 1882. Some later baggage lists and copies of original lists have been inserted as substitutes for missing or unreadable originals. While the entire microfilm series spans 108 rolls, the information collected here covers rolls 1 through 71. It includes individuals who arrived between January 1, 1800 and December 23, 1850. The information that you can learn will help create a well-rounded picture of your ancestor's arrival in America.
You may be able to find the following information about an ancestor:
• Gender
• Birthplace
• Age
• Occupation
• Country of origin
• Port of departure
• Port of arrival
• Date of arrival
• Destination
• National Archives list number
• National Archives microfilm roll number
• Name of ship (often the type of ship is noted as well)
• Family identification number

Please note that information available about an ancestor in this data set is, in rare cases, incomplete and can be supplemented by research with a copy of the original record. Determining additional information or verifying the information listed here is easy since the National Archive microfilm roll number and list numbers are included in most records. With this information, you can contact or visit your local National Archive facility to do more research.

In the September1850 U S Census indexes we locate the Isaac Tener family in Milford, Kent County, Delaware. Isaac is listed with an occupation of “farmer”. (*I am not completely certain that this is our Isaac Tener and family.)

The family does not appear in the 1860 Census.

In the June 1880 U S Census, Isaac and “Fanny” are located in Santa Cruz California. On the very next page of Census – the Population Schedule, we see – quite possibly living with Isaac, or next door to them, James P. Milne and his wife also “Fanny”. James is listed here as being a ‘farmer’ by occupation, and he is listed as 58 years of age. Since his wife is listed as “34” – we can see he is some 24 years older than she. James Milne is noted to have been born in Scotland.

(**In the 1870 US Census, there is a 47 year old James Milne who lived in Santa Cruz, California, listed alone with an occupation of “lumberman’. This is the only James Milne in the 1870 Census who was of the approximate correct AGE, AND BORN IN Scotland.)

According to records at the San Luis County Recorder’s office, “Jas. P. MILNE” died May 11, 1894. He is listed as ‘farmer’ and dying at his home in San Luis Obispo. His death was recorded May 12, 1894. The cause of death is recorded as “paralysis”. Here, however, I locate a glaring ‘discrepancy’! The Recorded lists his age at 58 years of age: but in the 1880 Census he is also li9sted at 58 years of age – I cannot account for this at this time.

A news article, in the San Luis Obispo Tribune, Sat. May 12, 1894 – page 4, says James Proven Milne died at his residence on Palm Street, on May 11, husband of Frances M. Milne, and he was a native of Edinburg, Scotland. He was last treated by a Dr. F.A. Krill, and the funeral by “undertaker Perry Dickason”. James was interred at the I.O.O.F. Cemetery.

The TBB tells us that Frances Milne’s mother Frances Tener (sister of Mary Francis Tener) died in 1897. The San Luis Obispo Co. Recorder has the record of her death. The S.L.O. County recorder has a listing for her death. Frances Tener died in San Luis Obispo, at the home of her daughter, on November 21, 1897. According to the register she was 88 years, 9 months and 12 days of age. She is listed as dying of “senile debility”. Her occupation was listed as ‘housewife’. And the remaining pieces of information in the listing includes: physician – “Jas. Sinclair”, undertaker – “J.L. Maynard”; and interred at I.O.O.F. Cemetery. (**These records can be viewed at the S.L.O. Co. Recorders Office, Book #2 – marked 1885-1905, searching under the T’s, and the record number is described as ‘file #766’.)

I later viewed the Index of Probate Cases at the Superior Court building – old ledger, and note that her ‘Probate’ is case #1632, Register G, page 451. As of this writing, those records have been ordered.

I viewed some of the news paper articles on microfilm at the S.L.O. Public Library. That is where I obtained the death notices – information from which appears above. (Copies of these articles are in my files – available upon request.)

I also had time to visit the San Luis Obispo Historical Museum, located at 696 Monterey Street, S.L.O. They had a file on her – Frances Margaret Milne, and there I learned that she was the librarian from November 1899, until February 1910. She apparently relinquished her position because she was very ill – perhaps knowing of her pending death?

It was at the Historical Museum that I obtained the following copy of her photograph:

The handwriting on the front, lower right corner, reads “Tener Photo, Los Angeles”. And on the back, it is noted that the picture is of Mrs. F. M. Milne, “Taken by her brother, Jan’y 1909.” Additionally there is a sticker on the mat backing that reads, “Negative no. 15130, R. E. Tener, Photographer, 3044 W. Pico Street, Los Angeles, Cal.”

In a February 18, 1909 article in the S.L.O. The Telegram, we see that Mrs. Milne’s poetry “received nice mention”. The article begins, “It will be pleasing to know that the poems of Mrs. Frances M. Milne, the public librarian, are now becoming recognized for their merit by the literatures of the country. Several most favorable press notices of her late poems have been received, the latest being from the San Francisco Monitor.”

The Monitor is quoted as saying, “…We are betwixt regret and pleasure when we learn that a good book of poems is “sold out” – regret that it is no longer to be had, pleased to know that it has been seized upon by the reading public.” Additionally they say, “…by Frances Margaret Milne, a California writer, who has been giving us some poetry of genuine worth and power. There is courage and high hope in Mrs. Milne’s verses. Many of them deal with living questions, social and political; and she voices her protest in words touched by fire.” Her book “For Today” was published by “Barry” in 1905. Another source tells us that they were destroyed in ‘the catastrophe’ – the 1906 S. F. Earthquake and fires that followed.

Page one, the Telegram, San Luis Obispo, Thursday April 21, 1910 headline reads, “Mrs. Milne passes on to reward: well known and talented woman enters the mystery after months of lingering illness.” The article tells us, “For several months Mrs. Milne had been in poor health and three weeks ago her condition was quite serious, but she rallied and her many friends hoped to see her sufficiently well to again resume her place in the world of literature as a poetress and custodian of the public library.”

Her brother was at her bedside when she passed: he came from Los Angeles and arrived just the day before. In addition, her publisher and good friend Mrs. and Mr. J. H. Barry of San Francisco – he the editor of The Star of san Francisco.

On April 22, the Daily Telegram reported that Mrs. Milne’s funeral will take place “from her late residence on Mill Street” at 2:00 PM on April 23, 1910.

On Saturday, April 23, 1910, her funeral took place. The services were ‘officiated’ by Rev. George Willett – who was the Congregationalist minister. Following the services at her home, “the cortege proceeded to the Odd Fellows Cemetery where the last sad rites were observed.” The article also indicated that she was “a writer of note”, and one admirer stated, “She was a magnificent woman.” Additionally, “although unassuming and of somewhat a retiring disposition”, she made many friends and would be missed in the community. The library was closed in her memory, and “will not be opened until 7 o’clock this evening.”

On Friday, May 6, 1910, the San Luis Obispo Tribune reprinted her obituary from the San Francisco Star – that dated April 30, 1910. While the article has no by line, one might assume it was written by Mrs. Milne’s good friend the editor J. H. Barry. He relates how he first acquainted her some 25 years prior – when she submitted one of her poems. Her obituary concluded with one of her poems, part of which follows:

“I live for those who loved me,
Whose hearts are kind and true;
For the heaven that smiles above me,
And awaits my spirit, too;
For all humanities that bind me,
For the tasks that God assigned me,
For the bright hope he left behind me,
And the good that I can do.”

I suspect more information may be had, with further research, in the following references:

Name: Milne, Frances Margaret
Birth - Death: 1846-
Source Citation:
• American Women. A revised edition of Woman of the Century, 1,500 biographies with over 1,400 portraits; a comprehensive encyclopedia of the lives and achievements of American women during the nineteenth century. Two volumes. Edited by Frances E. Willard and Mary A. Livermore. New York: Mast, Crowell & Kirkpatrick, 1897. (AmWom)
• Who Was Who in America. Volume 5, 1969-1973. Chicago: Marquis Who's Who, 1973. (WhAm 5)

Name: Milne, Frances Margaret
Birth - Death: 1846-1910
Source Citation:
• Childhood in Poetry. A catalogue, with biographical and critical annotations, of the books of English and American poets comprising the Shaw Childhood in Poetry Collection in the Library of the Florida State University. First edition. By John Mackay Shaw. Detroit: Gale Research, 1967. (ChhPo)
• Childhood in Poetry. A catalogue, with biographical and critical annotations, of the books of English and American poets comprising the Shaw Childhood in Poetry Collection in the Library of the Florida State University. First Supplement. By John Mackay Shaw. Detroit: Gale Research, 1972. (ChhPo S1)
• Childhood in Poetry. A catalogue, with biographical and critical annotations, of the books of English and American poets comprising the Shaw Childhood in Poetry Collection in the Library of the Florida State University. Second Supplement. By John Mackay Shaw. Detroit: Gale Research, 1976. (ChhPo S2)
• A Dictionary of North American Authors Deceased before 1950. Compiled by W. Stewart Wallace. Toronto: Ryerson Press, 1951. (DcNAA)
• The Poets of Ireland. A biographical and bibliographical dictionary of Irish writers of English verse. By D.J. O'Donoghue. London: Henry Frowde, Oxford University Press, . 'The Poets of Ireland' begins on page 5. The Appendices begin on page 495. (PoIre)