Friday, October 18, 2013

This makes me angry

Remember a few posts back about my grandpa Romeo's sister,
Dollie who only weighed 1 1/2 lbs at birth and no one expected her to live?
How they put her in a shoe box and her Mom nursed her to health.
She grows up to marry what turned out to be an abusive man,
and had a little baby boy who died shortly after birth.

Then she was only 29 when she died!...and this had been a mystery to me.
I finally got her death certificate in the mail this week, and it looks suspicious, considering the times and all.

Dollie died of "psychosis with somatic disease"
Then below it says, "recent attack of pneumonia when admitted to hospital"

Den and I both shook our heads when reading her cause of death
because history has shown it was a man's world back in 1927.
According to her niece Margaret, Dollie's husband use to take delight in pinching and abusing her.
Then when poor Dollie sought help, perhaps her husband covered it all by saying Dollie was mentally ill.
In all fairness I might be wrong....

But her grave marker to me is suspicous too.


Could her family have just wanted her maiden name, Dollie Rozier, on her grave...
but then James Risso insists they put that he was her husband....like he owned her. 
Why else would it say, "Wife of James Risso" but her name is not Dollie Risso on her grave.

That's what I come up with anyway.
Dollie's been dead over 80 years, but she will always be my Great Aunt.


Dollie is sitting between my grandparents.
This picture taken in 1923, shortly after her only baby died.

Did you know that:
"All states made "wife beating" illegal by 1920. 
However, only since the 1970s has the criminal justice system begun to treat domestic violence
 as a serious crime, not as a private family matter." 

12 comments:

Richard said...

Wasn't Risso one of the bad guys in the play/movie Grease? You're a great detective. Just think how much fun and more meaningful it will be to meet these people some day!

Anonymous said...

Then who is the baby in the picture?
Sad story.
darlene

Grandma Honey said...

The baby sitting on my Grandpa's lap is my Dad's older sister Leonie. The toddler to the left is also my Dad's sister, June. This was all about 7 years before my Dad was born.

Ammy said...

This is soo soo interesting to me. I think you should come be detective in our family history. My grandmother, who is my only grandmother alive, has no idea who her father is. There are lots of people who it could have been, but only one person knew, and she swore she would never tell anyone. She was our next door neighbor growing up and once my mom got the nreve to ask her. All she said was that my grandmother was conceived out of a lot of love. I am so so so so curious.

Scrapally said...

That is a sad story...I would think it suspicious as well. She looks very sad in that picture. I love how you are gathering family information and photos...you are a great historian!

Lisa said...

I always get surprised when you write something like, "That makes me mad." because I can't see you getting mad. But, after reading the post, it's totally understandable. Abuse is such a incomprehensible thing & people get away with it all the time. It's sickening.

THANK YOU for the feedback today. Your insights always help me thru the rough spots. I had occassion to talk to one of my Mom's friends today who has passed thru all sorts of stuff so I'm happy to have another person share their experiences with care taking. I hope you figure out the mystery about Aunt Dollie!

Anonymous said...

Yes, that is very suspicious! I suppose being married to an abusive man and losing a child could possibly drive a woman crazy...but I wouldn't think to their death at 29. Now I still wonder how Rowena(her sister) died...?
Heidi

cristie said...

This is sad indeed.

Lucky us huh?

xox

Donna said...

There will be a lot for people to answer for. But coming from your family, she has probably already forgiven him and helped him repent!

Yolanda said...

Aunt Dolly sounds like she was an abused wife both physically and emotionally! I wonder if Risso remarried and what happen to other women in his life?? I love how you tracked this story down,

Grandma Honey said...

Yolanda, that is exactly what Dennis has been asking. Our distant cousin Meg in Idaho said she thought he never had any more children (besides that baby boy that died) which is probably a good thing since that would stop the cycle of abuse. I do wonder what other relationships with women he had after Dollie died.

Sue said...

Sounds to me like she had a hard life.

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