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Buried at Ft. Rosecrans with Russian bride

The sailor meets a wife in Shanghai

Glikeria had been born in Kharkof, Russia
Glikeria had been born in Kharkof, Russia

The 1950 census won’t be released until 2025, so it was impossible to follow the census trail forward any further. I figured the only more current record I would find on our couple was their death dates, which should also get me their birth dates: Harry, who had been born in Missouri, by the way, lived from 1879 to 1954; Keria lived from 1889 to 1965. Both are buried at Fort Rosecrans National Cemetery in Point Loma which made sense given that Harry was a Navy veteran.

Harry's 1917 passport application

Death information can be easily attained online through Findagrave.com, which is free for anyone to peruse. Fortunately, Findagrave.com even contained photos of the couple’s gravesites, and from these, I discovered that “Keria” was short for “Glikeria”. Her name had gone from unusual for its time period to what the heck country did she come from? Yes, Harry L. Rogers, who had about as American a name as one could 100-150 years ago) likely married an immigrant.

Now armed with their birth and death years, I had to see what else I could dig up on Harry and Glikeria. Even though there was no family tree on Ancestry that claimed them (no major surprise there), the document floodgates opened up. I found their 1915 marriage certificate, applied for in Shanghai, China, where Harry was obviously stationed. Besides the surprising residence, I learned that Glikeria’s full maiden name was Glikeria Dmitrieva Hastchina.

Glikeria's 1917 passport application

A 27-year-old bride to be, she had been born in Kharkof (Tomsk Province), Russia, and, according to a Wikipedia entry, most likely fit the description of an early “Shanghai Russian”. (Wikipedia defines this group as a Russian diaspora that flourished in Shanghai, China, between WWI and WWII.) Clearly, Harry Llewellyn (as I now had his middle name) Rogers had done some round-the-world traveling as a sailor, and must have met his fiancée in China. But how did Glikeria and Harry communicate? In English? In Russian? In some form of Mandarin? That was something I knew I’d never discern about their early years together.

Regarding the available documents on Ancestry, though, the best news was that the couple did some serious overseas traveling after being married, and that meant passports. And passports meant photos! Yes, their subtly smiling faces both adorned their passport applications in 1917. They were heading from Manila to the U.S. at that point, and Glikeria wore an undoubtedly homemade, European, checkerboard-design blouse in her photo, while Harry donned his bright white lab coat in his.

It was fortuitous that photos were included because they had only become a fixture in passports in 1914. I was beyond excited to see what this pair looked like because I was already drawing a detailed mental image of them going through daily routines in the old rooms of our house some 80+ years ago. Glikeria in her Russian accent: “Harry, would you please shut the front door? There’s a draft in here!”

Next week – Part 4: Bought houses on Brookes, Upas, 8th Avenue, Georgia Street

To read Part 1: Who owned our house on Richmond Street? click here.

To read Part 2: Hillcrest house falls from $12,000 to $5,000 in ten years click here.

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Glikeria had been born in Kharkof, Russia
Glikeria had been born in Kharkof, Russia

The 1950 census won’t be released until 2025, so it was impossible to follow the census trail forward any further. I figured the only more current record I would find on our couple was their death dates, which should also get me their birth dates: Harry, who had been born in Missouri, by the way, lived from 1879 to 1954; Keria lived from 1889 to 1965. Both are buried at Fort Rosecrans National Cemetery in Point Loma which made sense given that Harry was a Navy veteran.

Harry's 1917 passport application

Death information can be easily attained online through Findagrave.com, which is free for anyone to peruse. Fortunately, Findagrave.com even contained photos of the couple’s gravesites, and from these, I discovered that “Keria” was short for “Glikeria”. Her name had gone from unusual for its time period to what the heck country did she come from? Yes, Harry L. Rogers, who had about as American a name as one could 100-150 years ago) likely married an immigrant.

Now armed with their birth and death years, I had to see what else I could dig up on Harry and Glikeria. Even though there was no family tree on Ancestry that claimed them (no major surprise there), the document floodgates opened up. I found their 1915 marriage certificate, applied for in Shanghai, China, where Harry was obviously stationed. Besides the surprising residence, I learned that Glikeria’s full maiden name was Glikeria Dmitrieva Hastchina.

Glikeria's 1917 passport application

A 27-year-old bride to be, she had been born in Kharkof (Tomsk Province), Russia, and, according to a Wikipedia entry, most likely fit the description of an early “Shanghai Russian”. (Wikipedia defines this group as a Russian diaspora that flourished in Shanghai, China, between WWI and WWII.) Clearly, Harry Llewellyn (as I now had his middle name) Rogers had done some round-the-world traveling as a sailor, and must have met his fiancée in China. But how did Glikeria and Harry communicate? In English? In Russian? In some form of Mandarin? That was something I knew I’d never discern about their early years together.

Regarding the available documents on Ancestry, though, the best news was that the couple did some serious overseas traveling after being married, and that meant passports. And passports meant photos! Yes, their subtly smiling faces both adorned their passport applications in 1917. They were heading from Manila to the U.S. at that point, and Glikeria wore an undoubtedly homemade, European, checkerboard-design blouse in her photo, while Harry donned his bright white lab coat in his.

It was fortuitous that photos were included because they had only become a fixture in passports in 1914. I was beyond excited to see what this pair looked like because I was already drawing a detailed mental image of them going through daily routines in the old rooms of our house some 80+ years ago. Glikeria in her Russian accent: “Harry, would you please shut the front door? There’s a draft in here!”

Next week – Part 4: Bought houses on Brookes, Upas, 8th Avenue, Georgia Street

To read Part 1: Who owned our house on Richmond Street? click here.

To read Part 2: Hillcrest house falls from $12,000 to $5,000 in ten years click here.

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