|1916 Grover Cleveland Alexander Handwritten Signed Letter|
It came from a recent Heritage Auction sale.
My transcription is:
Sat Sept 16 16
My Dear Friend
In reply to your letter in regard to my nationality I will say I am of Scotch Irish parents. My Father is a full blooded Scotchman and my Mother is Irish.
G C Alexander
"My Father is a full blooded Scotchman and my Mother is Irish." I like bold statements. They stand strong and we have to accept them as truth. We do, don't we? Well, no, not really.
I figured that Grover's declaration could be verified or disproved. To ancestry.com I went.
This 1900 US Census page shows that Grover's father, William Alexander was born in Iowa. Grover's mother, Martha, was born in Wisconsin. His paternal grandparents were born in Scotland and Ohio. His maternal grandparents were both born in Ireland.
Moving chronologically through the records, I should find the 1910 US Census. But I don't. Or at least I haven't yet. I found where he isn't. His parents, William and Maggie J. Alexander, were enumerated in St. Paul, Howard County, Nebraska that year. He wasn't in with the family. I don't know where he was when the census takers came calling.
So on to the next item. It is his World War I draft registration card. This doesn't talk about his parents' heritage, but it is interesting.
I found Grover in Chicago in 1920. On the next page is his wife, Amy. According to this Grover's father was born in Iowa. What's a few different states between friends?
Like the 1910 census I couldn't track down the 1930 census listing Grover.
In 1940 Grover and Mrs. Alexander are in New York. This census didn't ask where the parents were born.
|image by Arthur Koykka|
So, based on the records from Ancestry.com I'd have to say that I don't know if Grover's dad wore a kilt, but it does seem that his father wasn't born in Scotland and his mother wasn't born in Ireland. It is too late for me to try to do the ancestral math as to what percentage of what nationality he actually was.