Silas Scott Raymond v Effie Fisher Raymond
A Fraudulent Marriage Contract, Divorce in Williams County, Ohio, 1884
By Pamela Pattison Lash (updated 2010)
A fraudulent marriage contract in the divorce cases usually meant either a discovered former marriage with a legal spouse still living or a discovered pregnancy not acknowledged as issue of the marriage by the husband. This genealogical detailing is an example of the second type.
Silas Scott Raymond, b. 22 Sept 1860, Wms Co, OH, was the son of George and Sarah Stannart Post Raymond. These parents were Wms Co settlers traveling from Richland Co, OH c1852. The 1860 Millcreek Twp, PO Primrose, Wms Co federal census, p129a-129b, showed the family as George Raymond 36 OH, Sarah 33 OH, William 15 OH, Samuel 12 OH, John 8 OH, Harriet 6 OH, David 4 OH, and Lewis 1 OH. From the 1870 Millcreek Twp federal census, p15, one finds the family as George 48 OH, Sarah 44 OH, John 21 OH, Jane 17 OH, Austin 15 OH, Lewis 13 OH, Silas 10 OH. The 1880 Millcreek Twp federal census, p486D, had the Raymond family enumerated as George 56 OH-CT-CT, Sarah 53 OH-NJ-PA, Jane 26 OH, and Scott 19 OH.
Scott Raymond married Effie Fisher on 6 Mar 1884, Mansfield, Richland Co, OH. Effie, born 12 Feb 1865 in Mansfield, Richland Co, OH, was the daughter of Joseph and Susannah Boals Fisher who resided and were listed in the 1870 Franklin Twp, Richland Co, OH federal census as Joseph 33 OH, Susan 35 OH, Effa Z or J 5 OH, Susan E 3 OH. By the 1880 Weller Twp, Richland Co, OH federal census, the Fisher family was listed as Joseph 44 OH, Susan 45 OH, Effa Z 15 OH, Susan E 13 OH, Calvin M 8 OH, Mary L 10 OH. There is the possibility that the Raymond and Fisher families knew each other before the Raymonds moved to Wms Co.
About five months after the marriage Scott S. Raymond appeared in the Williams County, Ohio Civil and Criminal Court requesting a divorce (Journal 12 p378 - 29 Nov 1884; Roll 40 case number 1330 - 11 Aug 1884). He stated that Effie had been pregnant by another man, unknown to him, at the time of their marriage and that Effie had falsely conned him into this marriage. The records do not tell whether Scott knew Effie was pregnant before the marriage and believed himself to be the father or whether Scott discovered Effie was pregnant only after he married her.
The court granted the divorce about 3 1/2 months after the original filing or about 8 1/2 months from the marriage date. Whether Effa Fisher Raymond had delivered a child and, if so, whether the child survived, is not currently known. Also reference to Effie's residency at the time of the divorce is not known. Did she stay with the Raymonds, move back to Richland Co with relatives, or go elsewhere? The Wms Co, OH birth records do not list any birth for a child with the mother of Effa Fisher or Effa Raymond. In the roster of the employees of the Children’s Home in Richland Co, OH, dated 8 Sept 1887, Miss Effie J. Fisher was hired as dining room girl and boys’ governess.
Since there was no surviving 1890 federal census for the Ohio counties in question, one must look forward in time. The Joseph Fisher family still lived in Weller Twp, Richland Co, OH in both the 1900 and 1910 federal censuses. Effa does not appear with them nor was she listed with her brother Calvin Fisher who does have another single sister, Mary, with him in 1910.
So what happened to Effie? On 8 Nov 1889 Effie married John S. McElroy, born 22 Feb 1861 in PA, the son of Henry McElroy. An announcement appeared in The Richland Shield and Banner, 9 Nov 1889 - “Mr. John McElroy and Miss Effie Fisher, daughter of Infirmary Director Joseph Fisher, were married at the Children's Home at 7 o'clock last evening, Rev. N.S. Albright, officiating”. From the 1900 Toledo Ward 13, Lucas Co, OH federal census p12A the couple was enumerated as John S. McElroy 39 PA and Effie 28 OH; she did not have any children. Note that her birth date is listed as Mar 1872. They are found again in the 1910 and 1920 Toledo, Lucas Co, OH federal censuses. Effie’s 1910 record stated that she had only been married once as did John’s records show. According to John’s death certificate, he passed away in Toledo, Lucas Co, OH on 21 Jan 1928 with burial to follow in Franklin Cemetery, Mansfield, Richland Co, OH; John was a carpenter. Effie J. McElroy died on 9 Mar 1952 also in Toledo with burial in Mansfield, OH next to her husband.
Apparently Scott Raymond's marital experience was enough to last him a lifetime, as he did not become a bridegroom again. He lived with his parents until his father's death on 21 Oct 1885 @ 64Y 4M 20D who was buried in the Primrose Cemetery. Scott probably took care of the farm and his mother until his own death on 3 May 1900 @39Y 7M 11D in Wms Co (Deaths V3 p112); Scott was buried beside his father. Later on 13 May 1911 Sarah Raymond, Scott's mother, died @87Y 3M 15D, and joined her husband, son, and young daughter Della H who had died on 13 Sept 1865 @10M 2D in final repose at Primrose Cemetery.