When you enter Holy Cross Church on 42nd St, between 8th and 9th Avenues, you are stepping into the history and essence of New York City. A living landmark, Holy Cross Parish was founded in 1852, and the church is the oldest structure on all of 42nd Street. However, Holy Cross does not live only in its rich past. With weekday and Sunday Masses, Community Outreach Programs, and a vibrant and growing roster of parishioners, Holy Cross is an essential ingredient in Times Square and Western Midtown [http://web.archive.org/web/20100704184750/http://holycrossnyc.com:80/history_index.html].
I received back three copied pages from the City of New York Municipal Archives, for the marriage of Ernest and Helen Barnes, in under a month. Parents were noted for both couples, and also place of birth. Helen (called Ellen at birth and nicknamed Nellie) was living at 126 West 45th Street, and she lived within the parish boundaries. Her occupation was listed as Bookbinder. She was a cradle Roman Catholic, but Ernest was a Protestant, so it must have been her decision to marry in a Roman Catholic church. Ernest’s address was 7 West 65th Street, which is between Lincoln Center and Central Park. Of course I had to google the addresses! The Affidavit for License to Marry also noted that Ernest’s occupation was mechanic. On the 1910 Federal Census for New York City, Ernest H. Barnes had been living at 154 West 61st, and was listed as a timekeeper at an auto company. I haven’t found a conclusive 1910 Federal Census return for Helen Barnes. This is the first page – State of New York, Affidavit for License to Marry, No. 4831, dated 17 February 1914.
The second page is the Certificate and Record of Marriage. Both pages give Helen Barnes’ place of birth as Tipperary, Ireland, and although her family’s home was only a mile or two from County Tipperary, she was actually born in County Kings, Ireland, now called County Offaly. Ernest had been born in Wayne County, North Carolina, as noted.
The last page was the for the clergyman or magistrate to fill out. James F. Ferris, Catholic Priest, residing at 329 West 42nd Street, in the county of New York, entered the information and signed it, along with the two witnesses – Nellie Cunningham and D. Bishop. It was said that a match-making mutual friend had introduced the couple the year before, since they shared the same surname. Perhaps it was one of these two witnesses.
The cost to obtain the record was $15.00. When requesting a marriage record, and the year to be searched is not known, it costs $2.00 more, with a limit of two years. Always note on the application for a search that you want all of the pages copied, not only the marriage certificate. To obtain the form go to: http://www.nyc.gov/html/records/html/archives/genealogy.shtml
Good luck searching for your family marriage records!
Copyright 2017 by Maryann Barnes.