Posts Tagged budny family history

#52Ancestors: Week 14 – Lloyd Lester Pinney – World War II Bonus Case Files

This is week 14 of the 2015 #52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks Challenge where a group of u52ancestors-2015 Images blog about a different ancestor for each week of the year.  To learn more about the 52 Ancestor Challenge visit Amy Johnson’s site at Amy’s website.

“He is a much older man” they whispered. When family members talked about Lloyd it was in hushed tones. When your husband is older than your parents, yes, people will talked, quietly. That lets you know there must be some juicy story to tell. As a teenager, I wasn’t that interested in the gossip.

Lloyd Pinney was indeed much older than his wife Doris Budny. At 28 years her senior, Lloyd brought some stability to Doris’s life. My aunt Doris went down a rocky path in life. The union to Lloyd in her late 30’s helped a bit. The couple would move to Mayflower, Arkansas. After that, there wasn’t much talk of Doris and Lloyd.

Lloyd outlived Doris by four years. In 1984, Doris passed away at the age of 44. Lloyd moved back up to Michigan after her death. He was 75 years old when he died in 1988.

So who was this “much older man”?

Lloyd Lester Pinney, is the son of Allison G. Pinney and Laura M. Stover. He and his sister Ella Louis Pinney were born in Webb, Iowa. Lloyd remained on the farm until he was 30. Then far away in Hawaii, the unthinkable happen. The farm boy from Iowa joined the US Navy on January 14, 1942; five weeks after the Pearl Harbor attack. He was in the service for 20 months.

I found out about his service record from the World War II Bonus Case Files. When I first saw the title of the database, I envision juicy secret war records. No such luck. Move along folks, no gossip to be found here. Lloyd was in the files because he received cash money from the Iowa Legislature for his service to his country.

Iowa, World War II Bonus Case Files, 1947-1954

The following description is from

In May 1947, the Iowa Legislature approved bonus payments of up to $500 for men and women who served on active duty in the U.S. armed forces between 16 September 1940 and 2 September 1945. To qualify, applicants had to be legal residents of Iowa for at least the six months prior to their service.

Along with name, birth date and place, place of residence for six months prior to enlistment or induction, and address where a check could be sent, forms may provide a wide variety of details related to the applicant’s service. The forms in this database were filled out by veterans.

WWII Bonus Case File Application

WWII Bonus Case File Application

Lloyd Pinney WWII Bonus File Page 2_1950

Page 2 of Lloyd Pinney’s application

Lloyd’s application affirms that he was living in Webb, Iowa before he joined the service. He may have traveled to Buffalo, NY, for training, as his service started there. Lloyd’s bonus payment was $230. In 1950, that amount would cover about three months’ rent.


Farm Boy Moves to the Big City

The form doesn’t provide where Lloyd mustered out of service. Lloyd does make his way to Detroit, MI, most likely for work. He married Amy E. Reagan on January 3, 1945. She divorced him a scant two years later. What life Lloyd led between 1947 to about 1977 remains a mystery. I have not be able to find his name in any city directories. I don’t know when or where he met my Aunt Doris.

Because of the age difference, Lloyd was already retired when my aunt turned 40. There were no children from the marriage. My aunt and her husband had their life out in rural Arkansas. I was busy with my life in the city. And then, they weren’t there anymore for someone to talk about them.

The winds of time whisper their names to tell me not to forget them. Add their stories to the family tree the whisperer says. By gossiping, they shall be known.

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#52Ancestors: Week 11 – Uncle Eddy – A Bigamist or a Serial Marrier

This is week 11 of the 2015 #52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks Challenge where a group of u52ancestors-2015 Images blog about a different ancestor for each week of the year.  To learn more about the 52 Ancestor Challenge visit Amy Johnson’s site at Amy’s website.

The State of Michigan recently released Marriage, Divorce, and Death Records from 1926 to 1952. I have several great aunts and uncles that needed tending to find spouses maiden names. I spent the past two nights plugging in various family names and hit the jackpot on a few.


The marriage index can be accessed at and (free). You’ll have to do a little digging at to find the death records from 1926-1952. Use “Advanced Search” and check the box for Death Records, 1921-1952 OCLC LOADING.

Uncle Eddy a Bigamist or Polygamist?

I started my search in the marriage records index on Ancestry with the Budny surname. When Uncle Edward Budny’s name came up twice and the marriages were only a year apart, I thought he was a bigamist. Then I recognized the third wife’s name and it was “Oh My!” Is Uncle Eddy a “serial marrier?” screenshot of Edward Budny's marriage index screenshot of Edward Budny’s marriage index


Now the first step in an analysis would be to check if these three Edwards were the same person. Then check to see if the person is your relative. I knew right off the bat that this was my Edward. The Budny surname is not common in Detroit. There are a few Budny families in the area. Strangely, none of the families were related to each other.


Uncle Eddy was not mentioned a lot in my house. We hardly ever saw him. I knew growing up that there was some type of back story to Eddy and no one talked about it. I knew he wasn’t married (anymore) and he had a daughter. My only strong memory of him is at my 16 birthday party that fell on the same day as Father’s day. It was a great fun day with Eddy, my grandfather, and my aunt’s father-in-law. Who are all Polish and telling tall tales for sure.


Ancestry’s pop-up view of the record showed the parents’ names. All three records for Edward Budny listed the same parents, Adam Budny and Mary Borucky (Borucki). Those two are the progenitors of my Budny line.


So…was Eddy a bigamist? No, he wasn’t. The Michigan Divorce Index through 1952 are listed at Ancestry. What a relief to see two divorce listings for Uncle Eddy. Even though I could see the marriage and divorce dates online, I had to write them down on paper just to double check that the marriages didn’t overlap. screenshot of Edward Budny's divorces listings screenshot of Edward Budny’s divorces listings


Edward married Lillian Connor first in August 1939. Their divorce is granted on 16 September 1940. The marriage must have a rocky start from the beginning. Six weeks after the divorce, Eddy marries Victoria Podgorski on 26 October 1940. Vitoria and Eddy’s divorce is final on 21 January 1942. The first marriage lasted 14 months, the second; 15 months.


Third Time is Not a Charm


Another walk down the aisle less than three months after his second divorce. Lois Castle becomes Eddy’s third wife on 11 April 1942. Maybe this marriage has a fighting chance. Eddy enlists in the Army in March 1943 and musters out November 1944. Absence makes the heart grow fonder, so they say. The couple are still together in 1958 according to a city directory. A non-amicable divorce does occur sometime later. I think someone mentioned he had lady friends after his divorce. You know how family gossips.


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New Year – TYG’s New Goals and Do-Overs

2015 Resolutions

This is the year that I make one branch of my family tree public.  My tree is kept private on Ancestry for a number of reasons.  Mainly it needs a clean-up from a merge that didn’t go well a couple of years ago that created duplicate empty records.  I also need to update the source citations to meet Genealogy Proof Standards (GPS).

Public Family Tree

My goal by end March 31, 2015 (measurable goal); is to make the Borucki and Budny lines public here on TYG and Ancestry (specific goal).

Do help me with this goal, I am joining Geneabloggers Do-Over.  It is a personal educational learning initiative that a group of us are doing to improve our research skills.  Why, it is about taking a fresh look at your old research, breaking bad habits, creating and using effective planning tools.

Blogging Frequently

The 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks Challenge continues in 2015.  This challenge is about blogging or writing consistently.  Check out Amy Johnson Crow’s blog,  No Story Too Small.   There is a new format this year to keep the writers and readers interest.  I will continue to post 52Ancestors on Sunday’s.

Continuing Genealogical Education

The two to three year plan is to become a board certified genealogist.  In the meantime, I am working on short term goals. Here is the short list for this year.

Virtual Professional Management Conference 2015
Participate in Pro-Gen Study Group this Spring 2015
Regional Genealogical Society ConferencesOnline and virtual training

Paying it Forward

I have also been visiting my local genealogy and family history center offering advice on researching.  I find this part to be the most fun. Helping people get started on their journey of who they think they may be.

May your 2015 be a year of opportunity and prosperity.

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#52 Ancestors – No. 13 – Phyllis Budny, Inmate at Good Shephard

This post is number 13 in the series of the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks Challenge where a group of us blog about a different ancestor for each week of the year.  The learn more about the 52 Ancestor Challenge visit Amy’s website.

There are a lot of half truths, cover-ups and lies in my Budny family.  It stems from hiding the shame of probably being abandoned by the patriarch, Adam Budny in 1917, and Stanley Budny’s criminal ways and shocking death in 1927 . Phyllis Budny is my grandfather’s sister.  Born in Pittsburgh, PA in 1906, to Adam and Mary (Borucki) Budny.   At 15, she married Lawerence Herman on June 12, 1922, in Detroit, MI.  She and Lawrence only had one child before divorcing by 1930. She remarried later to Maurice Haggerty.

Phyllis_Budny Photo

The story goes that Phyllis went a little crazy and maybe that runs in the family as to why there was not a lot of information passed down. In truth, Phyllis was quite emotional as she mostly likely would be as her son was listed as missing in action during World War II. Her son, Chester, will turn 90 in a few weeks, by the way.

Phyllis is the only Budny family member I can find in the 1920 Census. Under the name, Phyllis Budna, she is listed as an “Inmate” at the House of the Good Shephard in Detroit. The Good Shephard was a catholic asylum who’s purpose was to “restore fallen women to the path of virtue and to protect young girls who are liable to temptation from unfavorable surroundings”.  Phyllis’s only crime was being poor.

The English language can be complex.  The term “inmate” at this time refers to residing at a institution, not strictly being a person in prison or jail.  Though I have a feeling that is what it felt like.  Phyllis did not like the conditions and ran away as soon as she could and got married.

The family was very poor after her father, Adam, disappeared.  Her mother was either doing sewing or laundry work in the 1920’s to survive.  Which is not enough to support seven children.  Most of the children were farmed out or placed in institutions.  Her sister, Frances, about 15, is hiding from authorities so she doesn’t get placed in a home. Frances gets married in 1920, a few months after the census is taken.

Their brother, Stanley, was a petty thief bringing in money to try to get the family back together. He also used a couple of aliases along the way and once served time at Jackson State Prison in Michigan.  I think the family was very wary of interacting with government authorities back in the day.

So Phyllis is in the clear.  Stanley did his “time.”

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