I had known my husband's paternal uncle, Albert Paul Dagutis (1920-1987), had briefly been married to a woman named Livana B. (Russell) Mueller. A decade ago, I found their 1949 marriage record and several city directories that showed them living in Lincoln Park, Michigan, throughout the 1950s. But I could never find out more about Livana until I really studied their marriage record.
|Albert P. DaGutis and Livana B. Mueller Marriage License;|
courtesy of Ancestry.com
They were married in Sandusky County, Ohio, on 26 February 1949. The index of the marriage license said Livana was born in 1928 and was 21 years old. It also provided her parents names. When I looked closely at the scanned image, I realized Livana said she was 31 years old, not 21. Armed with a better birth year, I searched the Michigan divorce records again for her divorce from her previous husband, Mr. Mueller. Finding that record, led me to believe Livana had not been completely honest on her 1949 marriage license. She was 41, not 31, and she had been married twice previously, not once. And so, more of her life became known.
Estella "Stella" B. Russell was born 6 March 1907 in Elk Rapids, Michigan to George William Russell and Mary Boursaw. Mary's father was three-quarters Chippewa and spelled his surname a variety of ways. When the 1910 census was enumerated, Mary lived with several of her children on what was referred to as the Indian Town Reservation. They lived in "civilized" (as opposed to aboriginal) housing on property owned by the iron company. Mary listed her marital status as divorced. However the divorce decree for desertion was not granted until 1919. Estella's mother then married Carl Martinsen, a Norwegian, with whom she'd lived with for almost a decade. Estella was enumerated as Carl's step-daughter in the 1920 census.
On 4 June 1923 Estella married Melvin Artlip in Muskegon County, Michigan. Both the bride and groom lived in Muskegon. Melvin worked as a chauffeur and Estella as a waitress. The couple had three children:
- Cassius "Cash" Melvin Artlip, born 22 February 1924 in Muskegon, died 22 June 2001 in Muskegon. He served in the U.S. Navy during World War II and married 1) Marcella Ruth Lane about 1947 and 2) Juanita Ellen (Worden) McEntaffer on 9 December 1966. He had two children with his first wife.
- George Stanley Artlip, born 16 August 1925 in Muskegon Heights, died 10 September 1996 in Polk County, Florida. He served in the U.S. Marine Corps during World War II and married 1) Delores May Seitz on 20 July 1946 in Detroit; and 2) Gloria Rita Anderson on 7 July 1991 in Palm Beach County, Florida. He had three children with his first wife.
- Pearl Delores Artlip, born and died on 10 January 1927 in Muskegon Heights.