52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks

52 Ancestors #8 Russell Dana Laycock

I am currently participating in Amy Johnson Crow’s 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks series.  This week the prompt was “Heirloom”.  I don’t have an heirloom that has been passed down in the family, so I have struggled to decide what to write about this week. I finally decided to write about one of the people I have recently been researching, Russell Dana Laycock, since I was able to find many newspaper articles about him.  Russell is from my ex-husband’s Marshall side of the family.  His relationship to my ex-husband is:

Russell Dana Laycock relationshiop

Russell was born on the 8 September 1899 in Racine, Racine, Wisconsin, USA.  He grew up at 1134 Park Avenue in Racine. His father worked as a clerk.  Russell had two brothers, William Randall (or Randall William) Laycock, who was born in 1901, and Roger Thomas Laycock, who was born in 1908.

In 1907, there was a newspaper article about Russell going to hospital to have his appendix removed.

From The Racine Daily Journal (Racine, Wisconsin), Thursday 5 September 1907, Page 1 Colum 4. (https://www.newspapers.com/image/334037208/?terms=%22russell%2Blaycock%22 – Newspapers.com lists the newspaper as The Journal Times. I have used the title from the newspaper itself)


Russell Laycock Recovering From Operation for Appendicitis.

Russell, the eight year old son of Mr. and Mrs. Dana Laycock, 1134 Park avenue, who unfortunately, sometime ago, broke his arm, has just undergone a serious and painful operation at the hospital for appendicitis, but yesterday he manifested the first evidence of being able to pull through the trying ordeal and rested nicely most all day.

The pluck and fortitude shown by the little fellow is remarkable, and for this reason alone his ultimate recover, which now seems so promising and favourable, may be attributed.

Russell’s mother, Minnie Ella Laycock, nee Brew, died when he was 9 years old, on 18 May 1909.  After her death, Russell’s grandmother, Betsy Laycock, moved in with the family.  Between 1910 and 1920, his father remarried, to Anna Groeling.

Russell appears in the World War 1 Draft registrations.  He was registered on 12 September 1918.  He was still living at home, at 1134 Park Avenue Racine, and was working as a shipper for the Racine Rubber Company.  His nearest relative was his father Wm Dana Laycock.

In 1919, Russell appears in the yearbook for Washington Park High School in Racine.  The following year, 1920, he was in the yearbook for the University of Wisconsin in Madison. He was a member of the Regimental Band, and he played the saxophone.

The next record I was able to find for him was a newspaper article from 27 June 1928, in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Page 2, column 7 (found on Genealogy Bank)

Rev. Russell Laycock Named for Priesthood

The Rev. Russell Laycock, deacon in charge of St. Peter’s mission, West Allis, will be advanced to the priesthood Sunday at All Saints cathedral by the Rt. Rev. B. F. Ivins, D. D., bishop coadjutor of the Episcopal diocese of Milwaukee. The very Rev. Charles S. Hutchinson, D. D., dean, will make the presentation.

Another article about his ordination appeared in The Racine Journal-News on Friday, 29 June 1928, Page 14, Col 5 https://www.newspapers.com/image/334133725/?terms=%22russell%2Blaycock%22

Local Young Man To Be Ordained Episcopal Priest

Bishop Ivins to Officiate at Service in Milwaukee

The Rev. Russell Laycock, a former resident of Racine, is to be ordained priest at All Saints’ cathedral, Milwaukee, on July 1. The Rt. Rev. B. F. P. Ivins, D. D., bishop coadjutor of the diocese of Milwaukee, will ordain the candidate who is to be presented by the Very Rev. Charles S. Hutchinson, dean of All Saints’ cathedral.

For the past year and one-half, Mr. Laycock has been in charge of St. Peter’s Episcopal Mission, West Alis, while he was completing his seminary course at the Nashotah Theological seminary. At the ordination on Sunday he will become the resident priest in charge of the Mission at West Allis.

Mr. Laycock received his early education in the Racine public schools and was a member of the graduating class of Racine High school in 1917. Since that time he has attended the University of Wisconsin. For the past six years he has been at Nashota House preparing for the priesthood. He was graduated there this year.

Mr. Laycock is a member of Holy Innocents’ congregation. On May 18, 1927, Mr. Laycock and the Rev. Harley Smith, Burlington, were advanced to the deaconate by the Bishop Coadjutor of Milwaukee at Nashota House.

The 1930 census shows that Russell was a lodger in the household of Adelia McKowen at 539 67th Avenue West Allis, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA.  He was a clergyman.

I found a short biography for Russell on Google Books from Stowe’s Clerical Directory of the American Episcopal Church – Page 213

1947 – ‎Snippet view – ‎More editions
LAYCOCK, Russell Dana (Wyo.), Hot Springs, S.D.— Retired, 1952—. b. Racine, Wis., Sept. 8, 1899; s. William Dana Laycock and Minnie (Brew). H. Sch., Racine; Nash., 1928. D— May, 1927, P— July, 1928, Bp. Ivins. m. Thelma E. Strodthoff, July 15, 1930; c. three. Vic. S. Pet. Mssn., West Allis, Wis., 1928-32 : Supply, 1932-37; P-in-c. S.John’s Ch., Ccntralia, S. Thos. Ch., Salem, Trin. Ch., Mt. Vernon, Gr. Ch., Greenville and Chr. Ch., Cariyle, 111., 1937-41; Chapl. U. S. A., 1941-46 …

This biography showed he married Thelma E. Strodthoff on 15 July 1930.  I found a newspaper article on 8 July 1930, in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel (page 21 col 2) on the Genealogy Bank website that showed a marriage license had been issued to them.  They were both living at West Allis.  Russell was 30 years old and Thelma was 24.

The 1940 census shows that Russell and Thelma and 3 children were living at 146 Charlotte Sycamore Street, Centralia, Marion, Illinois, USA.  In 1935, they had been living in Rural, Rock County, Wisconsin.

Russell was an Army Chaplain during World War 2.   He enlisted on 21 March 1941, and he was released 8 February 1946.   The first article I found for his time during his service was from the State (Columbia, South Carolina), Saturday, March 1, 1941, page 16, col 3 (found on the Genealogy Bank website).

Official Army Orders

Chaplain (First Lieut) Russell Dana Laycock, res., Centralia, Ill., to Camp Croft at Spartanburg.

In 1942, he was at Fort Benning.

From the Columbus Daily Enquirer (Columbus, Georgia), Saturday August 15, 1942, page 2, col 4 (found on Genealogy Bank)

Church Services at Fort Benning

Third Student Training Area: Chapel Bldg. 5201, Harmony Church Area, Protestant Regimental Service at 11 a.m. Chaplain Russell D. Laycock.

In 1943, and 1944, Russell appears in articles in Arkansas Gazette (Little Rock, Arkansas). I am just sharing one of these articles.

From 19 Dec 1943, page 30, Col 7 (found on Genealogy Bank).

11 Chaplains Receive Diplomas

Eleven army chaplains of the 66th Panther Division who recently completed a 36-hour refresher course were presented with diplomas by Maj. Gen. H. F. Kramer, division commander, yesterday.

“We recognize your work as one of the greatest morale building functions in the army,” said General Kramer. “I am pleased to see the fine spirit in which you men are going about your duties.”

Receiving diplomas were Lt. Col. Alvin E. Telchart, division chaplain; Maj. Urban J. Baer, assistant division chaplain; Capt. Russell D. Laycock, Lt. Horace G. Thurston, Lt. Nelson B. baker, Lt. Matthew B. Fehring, Lt. Lewis F. Scheffler, Capt. Ernst W. Karstem, Lt. Elbridge B. Linn, Capt. Herman M. Gross and Capt. Jonathan Edwards.

In 1946, Russell was in Waxahachie, Texas.

From The Waxahachie Daily Light (Waxahachie, Texas) 26 April 1946, page 2, col 3 (https://www.newspapers.com/image/87321467/?terms=%22russell%2Bd%2Blaycock%22)


Monroe and McMillan Sts. The Rev. Russel D. Laycock. 1st Sunday after Easter. Church School 10 a.m. Holy Communion, choir and sermon at 11 a.m. Confirmation instruction at 7.30 p.m. in the church. Visitors are welcome to these services.

Russell and his family moved to Evanston, Wyoming in 1947.

From The Ogden Standard-Examiner (Ogden, Utah), 22 January 1947, Page 5A col 3 (https://www.newspapers.com/image/28149250/?terms=%22russell%2Bd%2Blaycock%22)

Evanston Church Will Have New Rector

EVANSTON, Wyo., Jan. 22 – The Rev. Russell D. Laycock of Waxahachie, Texas, will come to Evanston on February 1 to become rector of St Paul’s Episcopal church, reports J. Burr Bailey, senior warden of the parish. The Rev. Laycock will be accompanied by his wife and three children.

Services in St. Paul’s church will be conducted by the Rev. Laycock on Sunday, Feb. 2.

By 1952, Russell had moved to Hot Springs, South Dakota.

From The Ogden Standard-Examiner (Ogden, Utah), 9 March 1952, page 4B, col 6 (https://www.newspapers.com/image/28169802/?terms=%22russell%2Bd%2Blaycock%22)

Vet Visits His Parents At Evanston

EVANSTON, Wyo. -Sgt. Dana R. Laycock was a visitor last week at the home of Mr. and Mrs. Nick Vozakis in Evanston. He was on his way to Camp Stoneman, Calif., from an air base in Maine and will sail in the near future for Japan and Korea for service overseas. Laycock is an air force mechanic.

He visited in Hot Springs, S., D., with his parents, the Rev. and Mrs. Russell D. Laycock, and his sister, Joan, and in Denver, Colo., with his sister, Lois Laycock who is completing a nurses’ training course this year in Denver. The family formerly resided in Evanston.

Russell and his wife were still living at Hot Springs at the time of Thelma’s death in 1965.

From the Rapid City Journal (Rapid City, South Dakota), 4 September 1965, Page 2, col 2 (https://www.newspapers.com/image/350967127/?terms=%22thelma%2Blaycock%22)

Thelma Laycock Dies; Rites Are Pending

HOT SPRINGS – Services are pending for Mrs. Thelma Laycock at McColley’s Chapel of the Hills here.

Mrs. Laycock died unexpectedly Sunday in a Hot Springs hospital.

Survivors include her husband, Russell, of Hot Springs.

Russell died 6 October 1975.  His last residence was Littleton, Arapahoe, Colorado, USA.  He and his wife Thelma were both buried at the Evergreen Cemetery in Hot Springs, Fall River, South Dakota, USA.  I have not been able to find an obituary for Russell yet.

The following Google Map shows where Russell lived during his lifetime.

Sources of Information
I am currently in the process of adding the information I have found and the sources to Russell’s profile on the family tree on my website.

Background of featured image is a photo from Unsplash – https://unsplash.com/photos/ptojCRijT3E Photo by unsplash-logoSiska Vrijburg

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