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The Mystery of William Tyler (aka Harry George Tyler)

††††††††† Just looking at the picture of my great-grandfather, he looks like a hard man.He was born November 6, 1876 to Warden and Catherine Tyler in Appleton, Minnesota.He married Anna Caroline Lewis on May 5, 1902.They had three children, Kathleen (March 6, 1905), Ward (July 10, 1907) and Marjorie (Jan 1913) who died of the measles.My grandfather Ward (aka Gramps) didnít tell me very much about his father. All he said was that his father left his mother and him sometime in 1920s.William died in Pasadena, California on November 26. 1936. Gramps was notified by his aunt, Annice McMillian of his fatherís death by this letter.

Not much was really was known (or least no one said anything).I became interested in family history around in 1985 and started to do some research. I sent and received for William Tylerís death certificate in early August 1985.There were a couple of things on the death certificate that were worth noting:

1.    His name was recorded as Harry George Tyler instead of William George Tyler

2.    Birth date was November 3, 1885 instead of November 3, 1876 (or 1877).

3.    The name ofhis wife is Mrs Anna Tyler. That was the name of his wife. We donít think they were actually divorced.

4.    The informant was Mrs H. G. Tyler

So the mystery becomes:

1.    Why he using the name Harry George Tyler?

2.    Why was the birth year so far off?

3.    Who was this Mrs H. G. Tyler?

Since 1985 there was really no way to find out any more information since he died until now. I found the following record from the 1930 census from Glenwood, Oregon:

Name

Age

Harry G. Tyler

42

Anna Tyler

44

Irene Gaston

21

Earl Gaston

19

Vernon Gaston

17

Willard Gaston

15

Loyd (Lloyd) Gaston

11

 

Putting the pieces together, William George made a name change to Harry George Tyler and married Anna Gaston who was a widow around 1928.Anna Tyler had been married to Moris Gaston, but he apparently died (or disappeared) after 1920. This family shows up in the 1920 census with Moris Gaston as the head of household. In 1920, the Gaston family was living in Spivey, Kansas. At some point the family ends up in Glenwood, Oregon minus Mr Gaston.After the 1930 census, Harry and Anna move to Pasadena, CA and Harry dies in 1936.It is interesting to note the 1930census shows that Anna Tyler is on her second marriage, but Harry his first. They had been married 2 years.The implication of all this is that William Tyler probably committed bigamy.He changed his name and his birth year to be able to marry Anna Gaston. After Williamís death, his widow doesnít remarry and died in San Bernardino, CA in 1955.

Below is what I found out about the Gastonís:

Name

Death Date

Death Location

Anna Hunter Gaston Tyler

June 17, 1955

San Bernardino, CA

Irene Gaston

August 11, 1980

Kern County, CA

Earl Gaston

Unknown

Unknown

Vernon Gaston

November 22, 1994

Wichita, KS

Willard Gaston

August 13, 1980

Los Angeles, CA

Loyd (Lloyd) Gaston

September 8, 1996

San Bernardino, CA

 

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