Does age matter? The marriage of Elmer Walsh and Elva Sopha Walsh. (Joan Miller’s great grandparents)

I have researched literally hundreds of families on, I have come to expect that couples usually are of a similar age. Not so for Elmer and Elva! Elmer married his much younger second wife in 1915. Together, they became the direct ancestors to my friend Joan Miller.

Elmer Ellsworth Walsh was born on May 17, 1862, in Kirkwood, Illinois. His second wife Elva Loretta Sopha was born on March 11, 1895, in Elmer, Michigan.

I will do the math. Elma (the bride) was 20 years old when she wed Elmer. Elmer (the groom) was 53 when he married her.

Elmer had previously wed a woman named Lucy Chalker. They were divorced in 1915 (yes, if you are checking, the same year he married Elva!) As an interesting note, his first marriage ended because of “extreme and repeated cruelty.”

Elbert and Elva’s were the direct ancestors to Dorothy Walsh (the paternal grandmother of Joan Miller.) Elbert was 55 years old when Dorothy Walsh was born. Elva was only 22 years old.

Are you ready for this story to totally turn your head? There is another record that shows that Elmer and Elva did not marry until 1921. What???? If that is true, then they were NOT married at the time that Elva birthed her twin daughters Dorothy Walsh and Doris Walsh in 1917. (A genealogy question!) More information is needed to solve this big mystery!

Here is the web site for Elmer Walsh’s grave (includes his obituary)

Here is the death certificate for Elmer Walsh:

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