52 Weeks 52 Ancestors – week 8 – Heirloom

Catching up on postings once again.

Week 8’s prompt from Amy Johnson Crow  for 52 weeks 52 ancestors is Heirloom. Growing up there weren’t many items that many would describe as “heirloom’s” but there were several pieces of furniture that had been passed down to family members. One such piece is the “washstand”.

According to Naomi Parish Phillips, the “princess dresser” was purchased after a good rice crop  by her father James Monroe Parish for her mother Edrina Graham. Edrina passed away soon after receiving the gift.1


Parish Wahstand-wb

The “princess dresser”, which is now called a washstand, remained in the Parish family household and was used by family members. It was eventually inherited by another Parish family member, Nell Parish Smaihall. Nell placed the washstand in her daughter’s, Larnell, bedroom for.many years. As with most heirlooms the was cherished and children were warned to take great care when playing nearby as to not damage the chest.

Nell surprised everyone when on the eve of her granddaughter’s wedding  by announcing the washstand was being given to the bride, Melinda Dosch, as a wedding present. Melinda has lovingly and proudly displayed the washstand in every one of her homes.

1    Phillips, Naomi (Parish). “My Life Story”, 1972, Copy privately held by the Dosch Family Archives (Address for Private Use) Magnolia, Texas. 2015. 


52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks – Week 7 – Valentine


Intelligence, humor, and loyalty are the major characteristics of my valentine, Doug Culpon. The stuffed dog is from the first valentine’s day we shared in 1981. When I received this gift Doug had “created” a sign with straws and taped it to the dog and it read simply “Happy Valentines Day” I love you.

Why would he give me a gray poodle? This is a joke between us – that I am a reincarnation of the dog he had growing up – Suzette

Favorite Name

Following the prompts of Amy Johnson Crow  for 52 weeks 52 ancestors- Week 6’s prompt is – Favorite Name

Name-Week 6

With a progeny of family names it is not difficult to choose a favorite. This name is unique and combines information from both mother and father thus tying this person to their family each day.


Larnell, [lawr-nel], is a combination of her parents names, Lawrence and Nell. Her mother originally spelled her name Laurnell however people kept prounouncing it incorrectly so the u was quickly deleted.

Having a unique name has it’s benefits and its’ disadvantages.When she was young her name caused confusion many times. However, if  pronouncing Larnell was bad trying to figure out how to pronounce her last name, Smaihall [smey-hawl], was worse.



Following the prompts of Amy Johnson Crow  for 52 weeks 52 ancestors- Week 5’s prompt is – CensusUpp-1910 census

In 1995 my father asked me to search for his biological families’ information since I was living in Ohio and that is where he was born. Find his biological father, Kenneth Upp, son of Josephine and “Squire” Upp.

I was fortunate to be able to accompany my husband on a business trip to Salt Lake City so I headed to the Family History Library. Finding a different copy of  this census record the information was the same but next to Kenneth’s name were the initials “ss”. Having NO training in family research I took this information up to the assistant at the FHL and asked, “What does ss mean?” to which he nicely replied “step-son”.

Sharing this information with my father at the time was fun but it also started a quest to find the biological father of Kenneth Upp. Information regarding “Mr. Haskins” was confirmed by cousins who provided primary information to support the census. This quest has been interesting to follow for the past 20 years. It is hopefuly that DNA and other information will help to discover the biological father of my biological paternal grandfather.

Invite to Diner

Butterfly Table

Following the prompts of Amy Johnson Crow  for 52 weeks 52 ancestors- Week 4’s prompt is – Invite to dinner

The one ancestor I would like to have dinner with would be my 2nd great grandmother Victoria Pevito.

Victoria was the first of 16 children born to Samuel Henry Pevito and Emily Margaret Bland in 1857. She married Samuel Parish in Orange, Texas on December 11, 1872, she was 14. Her first child, James Monroe Parish was born, June 8, 1874 in East Bernard, Texas.

According to family legend, Victoria was pregnant with her second child when husband became ill and died while working on a rice farm in Wharton County in 1875. She rode horseback over 160 miles to return to live with her parents in Orange. [Parish Family History by Naomi Parish Phillips]

Victoria’s second marriage saw her face the trial of her husband who committed embezelment and murder and his death four years later while he was imprissoned.

It seems she finally found some happiness with her third husband, with whom she spent the last ten years of her life and had 4 more children.

Her strength and determination to move forward with the obsticales life placed in front of her in the late 19th century is admirable.



52 Weeks 52 Ancestors – Week 3 – Longevity

52 Weeks 52 Ancestors – Week 3 – Longevity

Longevity is the prompt for this week’s post.

For the Dosch/Smaihall extended families that honor would go to my paternal great aunt, Sarah Jerger Neil.

Sarah Jerger Neil
Sarah Jerger Neil

Sarah was born 25 July 1894 and lived to 12 May 1995. Sarah was born in Jasper, Indiana and my grandmother followed this sister into the noble profession of nursing. Sarah’s family lived on Staten Island for years and visiting my father’s favorite aunt was always fun. Our families were fortunate to be able to help celebrate Aunt Sarah’s 100th in Washington, DC. in 1994.

For the Culpon/Knier extended family the longevity honors would go to Doug’s grandmother, Ada Holmes Culpon.

Ada Holmes Culpon
Ada Holmes Culpon and Rusty

Ada was born 6 October 1893 in Pepperell, Massachusetts. Aside from raising a family she worked in the textile industry. She was an extremely bright individual and in her later years would spend time each year in Florida to escape the Massachusetts winters. She passed away on 24 January 1992 at the age of 99 having lived a long and happy life.

Sarah Jerger Neil, black and white photograph , 1970; digital image 2018, privately held by Dosch Family Archives,  [ADDRESS FOR PRIVATE USE], Magnolia, Texas,2015. Sarah sent photograph to her sister Rose Dosch in 1970. Photograph was then inherited by Rose Dosch’s son Charles at the time of her death in 1973. Photograph was then passed to Charles Dosch’s daughter Melinda Dosch Culpon for family archival purposes.

Ada Holmes Culpon, tinted black and white photograph, ca. 1940; digital image 2018 privately held by Culpon Family Archives,[ADDRESS FOR PRIVATE USE], Magnolia, Texas, 2012. Ada Culpon’s son Douglas Culpon, Sr. inherited photograph at the time of her death in 1992 this item was then inherited by Doug Culpon, Jr. at the time of his father’s death in 2012 and remains in his possession.


52 Weeks 52 Ancestors

52 Weeks and 52 Ancestors – Week 2 – Favorite Photo

The beginning of 2018 Amy Crow Johnson, developed an idea to prompt people to share information they have found on their ancestors 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks. Trying to blog once a week had been a goal that was derailed last year because of life, therefore it is once again on my list of goals for 2018.

The flu knocked me for a loop for the past three weeks so I am trying to catch up on some of the goals I had set for this year. Therefore I will start with the prompt for Week 2 – Favorite Photo

Dosch Grandparents and Grandchildren

This is a photograph of Jack and Rose Dosch reading to their grandchildren Keith and Melinda Dosch during Christmas of 1963. This is one of my favorites because I found it when digitizing Dosch family slides last year but it shows the priority reading was for my family. It is nice to see this tradition started when I was young and that I can remember extremely happy times reading like this for my children as well.

“Reading to Grandchildren”, slide, 1963, digital image,2017, Dosch Family Archive [ADDRESS FOR PRIVATE USE] Magnolia, Texas. Slide taken by Charles Dosch inherited by Melinda Dosch Culpon for the Dosch Family Archive in 2015.

30th Birthday Celebration – Finally

Time flies when you are having fun. This is Chase Culpon celebrating his first birthday in Port Neches, Texas.Culpon-Dosch Family Archive1

Fast forward 29 years and Chase continues to enjoy celebrating his birthday with his mom.


Chase turned 30 in August 2017. Hurricane Harvey and his father’s illness disrupted planned celebrations.  Family and friends finally celebrated Chase turning 30 in December at Yakiniku Futago in New York City. His father and I are proud of the man that Chase has become.

1     Melinda and Chase Culpon , photograph, 1988, privately held by Culpon Family Archive [address for private use,] Magnolia, Texas,[Photograph taken during first birthday party of Chase Culpon, Port Neches, Texas].

2     Denise Paccagnini, Melinda and Chase Culpon Celebrating, photograph, 2017, privately held by Denise Paccagnini [address for private use], New York, New York, [Photograph taken at 30th birthday celebration of Chase Culpon at Yakiniku Futago restaurant, NYC]

Matriarch and Patriarch

Larnell and Doug


Currently the matriarch of the Dosch family is Larnell Smaihall Dosch. The patriarch of the Culpon family is Douglas Holmes Culpon, Jr. (aka Doug)  Larnell’s family has roots from Texas,Louisiana, Austria-Bohemia and England. Doug’s family is from Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, Germany and England.

Less than fifty miles separated members of both the Dosch and Culpon families in the northern  part of Yorkshire in the 19th century. We are lucky that over a hundred years later these families could unite in Texas and share their culture and heritage.