05 January 2015

52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks: Week 1; George Edward Kirk White

The first biography of the year that I will write will be that of my grandfather, George Edward Kirk White; who was born 3 April 1910 in Albany, NY at 239 Second Street.  He was the only son of George Washington White (1871-1935) and Clara Boyd Hitchcock (1882-1966).  Other children of George and Clara include

  • Margaret Agnes (1905-1984)
  • Clara Edna (1906-1978)
  • Mary Wilson (1908-1973)
  • Marie Mulder (1912-1976)

Left to Right: Mary, George, Margaret, and Clara

George was baptized in Albany at Grace Episcopal Church located on the corner of Clinton Avenue and Robin Street on 14 May 1910.  Below is a scan of his original baptism record.  George's grandfather, Charles William White (1835-1917) was the longest tenured vestryman in the Church's history.

According to George's National Guard papers, he entered the trade of bookbinder.  The 1935 Albany city directory lists George as a signal operator at 11 North Pearl Street, the Home Savings Bank building, in room 212.

George Edward Kirk White, circa 1927

On 15 May 1931 George married Margaret Mary Gannon (1913-1998) in Albany.  Below is a scan of their wedding certificate.  They were married again on 24 August 1933 in the Catholic Church of the Assumption in Peekskill.  By this time George was in the National Guard and stationed there.

George and Margaret's children:
  • George Edward (1931-2001)
  • Richard Kirk (1934-1949)
  • Thomas Charles (1936-2012)
  • Michael William (1941-     )

George Edward Kirk White, circa 1930s

George Edward Kirk White, 1936

George enlisted in the National Guard in 1927.  He spent over twenty-five years in the Guard rising to First Sergeant. During World War II, he enlisted in the US Army and landed in France in December 1944.  During the Battle of the Bulge he was captured and taken as a prisoner of war. He spent the remainder of the war as a POW until his camp was liberated.

US Army discharge, front

US Army discharge, reverse

Below is a scan of the Western Union telegraph from 12 January 1945 that was sent to my grandmother indicating that her husband was missing in action.

After a long two and a half months, another Western Union telegraph came notifying my grandmother that her husband was a prisoner of war of the German government.  Below is a scan of that telegraph.

After the war, George was discharged from the US Army but he continued his enlistment in the National Guard and became superintendent of the National Guard armory on Washington Avenue in Albany.

George Edward Kirk White, 1981

On 10 October 1982, George Edward Kirk White died at St. Peter's Hospital after suffering a heart attack.  He was buried two days later in Our Lady of Angels cemetery.  Sixteen years later on 2 July 1998, his wife Margaret Mary Gannon White joined him.

Gravestone at Our Lady of Angels Cemetery

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for posting your "Grandfather's" and my "Dad's" bio.
    I'm sure he is looking down and smiling.