Alice Violet Fielding – For The Record

This is the first of a series of “For The Record” posts. Each post will be devoted to one member of our family tree. I plan to compile what I’ve been able to document about the person in a timeline format. I hope it helps to paint a little picture of the lives of these characters.

Relation to me: My Great Grandmother – maternal side

Parents: James Fielding and Rosetta Silverstein Fielding

Siblings: William James Fielding, Jane Fielding Hurst, Gracie Fielding, Rosetta Fielding, James Henry Fielding

Spouse: George Harold Merry

Children: Frederick James Merry, Stafford Fielding Merry

Born: 1876 in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. Alice was the third child of James and Rosetta Fielding.

Lived: 1881 in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada (per 1881 Canada Census). Father, James, works as a “laborer”. Mother, Rose, works as a “tailoress”.

Lived: 1891 in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada (per 1891 Canada Census). Father, James, works as “stationary engine fireman” at Hamilton Cotton Company. Three of the four children are also working at Hamilton Cotton – Will as a “cotton weaver”, Jane and Alice as “cotton mill doffers.”

The Fielden family in the 1891 Canada Census
Most of the Fielding family worked at Hamilton Cotton Company in the 1890s.

Lived: 1904 in Utica, NY (per 1904 Utica City Directory). Address – 125 Webster. Lives with sisters Jane and Retta. All three work as “operators” – presumably in the Oneita Mills.

Alice (R) and Retta (L) Fielding with a couple of “chums”. Picture likely taken in or near Utica NY in the early 1900s.

Lived: 1905 in Utica, NY (per 1905 Utica City Directory). Address – 184 Elizabeth. Lives with sisters Jane and Retta. All three work as “operators” – presumably in the Oneita Mills.

Alice and her sisters, Jane and Retta all worked at the Oneita Knitting Mills in Utica, NY, in the early 1900s.

Marriage: To George Harold Merry – June 30, 1906 (per Utica City Clerk record). Notice that Alice names her mother as “Roselle Feltstaff”, not Rosetta Silverstein. (For more information about this, see the “Family Secrets” post.)

Record of Marriage – Alice Fielding and George Merry

Birth of son: Frederick James Merry – April 26, 1907

Lived: 1910 in Whitestown, NY (per 1910 US Census). Address – 637 Whitesboro St. Husband, George, works as a “machinist” in a “knitting mill”.

Birth of son: Stafford Fielding Merry – August 15, 1910 (per NYS Birth Index).

Lived: 1915 in Whitestown, NY (per 1915 NYS Census). Address – 2519 Whitesboro St. Husband, George, works as “machinist”.

Stafford Fielding Merry, Alice Violet Fielding Merry, Frederick James Merry, George Harold Merry. Circa 1920.

Lived: 1920 in Utica, NY (per 1920 US Census). Address – 707 Chestnust St. Husband, George, works as “foreman” in a “knitting mill”. On this census, Alice claims she immigrated to the US in 1890 and was naturalized in 1900. Neither is true. Alice was still in Canada per the 1891 Census and there is no evidence that Alice ever became a citizen of the US – a fact she admitted later in life according to our oral history.

Lived: 1921 in Utica, NY at 711 Court St. (per newspaper article dated July 25, 1921.

Death of son: Stafford Fielding Merry – July 25, 1921. Eleven year old Stafford was killed in a hit and run accident involving a drunk driver.

Lived: 1930 in Utica, NY (per 1930 US Census). Address – 814 Oswego St. Husband, George, is a “proprietor” of a “gas station”. Son, 22-year-old Frederick is still living in the household and working as an “office clerk” for the “phone company”.

George and Alice Merry’s gas station at 1500 Lincoln Ave, Utica NY. The couple ran this station from the late 1920s until the late 1940s.

Lived: 1940 in Utica, NY (per 1940 US Census). Both Alice and George work at the “gas station” – George as “attendant” and Alice as “helper”.

Frederick James Merry with mother, Alice Fielding Merry
Alice Merry with son, Frederick James Merry

Lived: circa 1950 in Vernon, NY where Alice and George ran The Basket Shop (per Utica Observer Dispatch news article on the couple’s 50th wedding anniversary.)

Alice in front of the Basket Shop. She and George opened the shop in the early 1950s in Vernon NY.

50th Anniversary Celebration: June 30, 1956. Dinner celebration held at Dibble’s Inn in Vernon, NY.

Utica Observer Dispatch – July 6, 1956
50th wedding anniversary – 1956. Front: George Harold Merry, Alice Violet Fielding Merry. Back: James Merry, Mary Merry, Kathryn Hinman Merry, Frederick James Merry, Jane Merry

Membership: 1958 member of the Winona chapter of the Order of the Eastern Star – a sister organization to the Masons.

Alice’s 1958 membership card for the Order of the Eastern Star

Death: May 18, 1960. Alice Violet Fielding Merry was 84 years old when she passed.

Rome Daily Sentinel

Buried: Forest Hill Cemetery, Utica, NY

Gateway to Forest Hill Cemetery, Utica NY.
Merry plot at Forest Hill Cemetery, Utica NY. Buried here are Alice and George Merry, son Stafford Fielding Merry and Alice’s father, James Fielding.

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