Monday, February 6, 2012

Monday Mystery: James & Alice Wood's divorce

Yesterday I learned that James Edgar Wood, hubby's paternal gfather, was married to Alice Hopperton Unger in 1926. Alice had previously been married and divorced (by 1919) but kept her Unger name until she married James.

Edgar (my father-in-law) told my hubby during an interview in 1983 that he thought his father James had "got a housekeeper and he married her." Edgar kept his distance after that. But clearly James's life took some other turn, because he was married to Caroline Cragg by the time of the 1930 Census.

What happened in between? Apparently, Alice and James were divorced sometime between 1926 and 1930. My best guess is they were divorced around 1929, because James seems to have gone to Jackson, Michigan in 1929, but more sleuthing is required. By the time Alice died (at only 46), she had assumed the "Unger" name once again (see below).   UPDATE: I learned about the Alice/James divorce in 2018, and you can read it here.

Alice died on April 5, 1930 in Cleveland. The informant was Mrs. Brinker, Alice's sister (see obit abstract, below, from the Cleveland Necrology file).

d#: 0369015
Name: Unger, Alice
Date: Apr 6 - 1930
Source: Source unknown;  Cleveland Necrology File, Reel #081.
Notes: Unger: Alice, beloved daughter of Mrs. Rachel Hopperton and sister of Edward F., George C., Frank J., Mrs. H. O. Brinker, Mrs. O. C. Hughes, and the late Arthur S. Hopperton, Saturday morning. Funeral Monday, April 7, 1930, at 2:30 p. m., from the home of her brother, George C. Hopperton, 2106 Overbrook Road, Lakewood.



  1. So what's your take on this? Had Alice divorced James Wood, married Unger and divorced him also?

    Dee at Shakin' the Family Tree

  2. Dee, Alice was previously married to Mr. ___ Unger, was divorced since 1919 (and living in Denver in a hotel according to the 1920 Census). Somehow she met James E. Wood. I'm adding a note, above, to include what Ed (James's son) said in an interview. But I gather that Alice & James got divorced and then James remarried to Caroline Cragg. More soon!

  3. Locating their divorce record should reveal more interesting information.

  4. Kathryn, I'm still looking for the divorce record, which I presume is in Ohio. As you say, it will make for very interesting reading. Thanks for your comment!