May 18, 2012

Theodore F. Coffey

Hiram Coffey was born c1916 in Indiana to John Waid and Mary "Polly" Harbert or Harbord Coffey.  He married Elvira Coe on Oct. 15, 1843 in Jeffersonville, Clark Co., IN.*  By 1860 they were residing in McLean Co., IL but apparently spent a number of years in Indiana before relocating; four of their nine children were born in that state.  By 1870 he and Elvira were back in IN and residing in Bloomington Twp., Monroe Co.

The couple had at least nine children:  Theodore, Henrietta, Mary, Loretta, Frances Josephine, Arabine (Allie); Amadin (Amy), Abraham Lincoln, and Clara.

Concentrating on Theodore for this blog, I found that he was born Aug. 10, 1844 in Salem Twp., Washington Co., IN and died on June 9, 1926 in Bloomington, McLean Co., IL.  He married Laura B. Freshwaters c1879, who was born on Oct. 10, 1860 in Apollo, Armstrong Co., PA and died April 21, 1928 in Bloomington.**

There were three children born to this union.  First was Euliss Elvira, born in Apr., 1880.  Mark A. was next, born in Dec., 1881 followed by Hallie L., a son, in Aug., 1889.  I have not yet followed these children to discover their marriages, death, etc.

In 1880 Theodore was clerking in a store in Bloomington but by 1900 he was employed as a traveling salesman.  His break came in 1903 when he received a patent for his "new and useful Needle-Threader."  US Patent No. 735,211 was issued to Theodore on Aug. 4, 1903.  The device was designed to thread either a hand or a sewing machine needle.  From that period until his death in 1926 Theodore continued to make and sell his invention.

Theodore died on Jun. 9, 1926 at home at 706 E. Mill St. in Bloomington and was buried at Hopewell Cemetery in Downs, McLean Co., IL.  Laura followed on Apr. 21, 1928 and is also buried at Hopewell.

*Indiana State Library Genealogy Database: Marriages through 1850, Indiana State Library online [], accessed Sep.,2005.
**"Illinois Deaths and Stillbirths, 1916-1947," database, FamilySearch Historical Records from Illinois Department of Health. "Certificates of Death." Illinois Department of Health, Springfield, Illinois. FHL microfilm. Family History Library, Salt Lake City, Utah.

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