Thomas Hodges died 27 December 1968

Thomas Joseph Hodges was born 10 January 1897, in Nova Scotia, according to his record in the 1901 census of Canada.  His parents were listed as Ezekiel and Annie Hodges.  Nova Scotia records say that Ezekiel Hodges married Annie May McCormick on 24 October 1899 in Berwick, Nova Scotia, so almost three years after Thomas was born.  This is Ezekiel’s second marriage, and I have not identified his first wife.  Ezekiel was Baptist. Annie and Thomas were Roman Catholic.  I am not sure if Thomas is actually the son of Ezekiel and Annie.  He may have been the son of Ezekiel from the previous marriage, or he may have been Annie’s son, since they were the same religion.  Or he may have been adopted by both.

Ezekiel and Annie divorced, probably before 1911, as Ezekiel was living with his brother at the time of that census.  I have not yet located Annie or Thomas in the 1911 Canada census (nor the 1910 US census).  Annie went west, and in 1918 married Harry Haskell in Vancouver BC. 

Thomas Hodges registered for the WW1 draft, from Greenville, Pennsylvania, on 15 June 1917.   He was unmarried, born in Dalhousie, Nova Scotia.  The registration card described him as tall, medium build, blue eyes, brown hair.  He was a locomotive fireman for the Bessemer and Lake Erie (B&LE) railroad.  That railway hauled iron ore to Pittsburg, and coal north to Conneaut Harbor in Ohio. 

I have been unable to find Thomas Hodges in the 1920 census.    

On 11 January 1923, Thomas married Arlovene “Arlie” Lathrop in Westfield, NY.  Arlie was the daughter of Jonas Lathrop and Sarah “Sadie” Youngblood.  Both were residents of Wesleyville, PA.  Much of the information on the marriage certificate does not match earlier information about Thomas.  Thomas claimed to be born in Boston.  His father’s name was incorrectly recorded as Edward born in Ireland, and he claimed that his mother Annie was born in Ireland, when earlier records show they were both born in Nova Scotia. 

Thomas and Arlie had a daughter, Wanda, born 27 May 1924 in Erie PA.  (She married, had five children, and died in 1962.) 

According to an on-line tree on Ancestry, Thomas and Arlie divorced in 1926.  The 1930 census lists Thomas in Wesleyville, working as a locomotive engineer on a steam railroad, married, but his wife did not live with him. He and his parents were listed as all born “Canada English” which can refer to Nova Scotia.  He was listed as a roomer.  Others in the same household were called boarders and lodgers.  I’m not sure of the distinction between those labels.  The wife of the head of household had occupation listed as “none” but with nine other adults in the household (not counting her husband) it is pretty apparent that she was running a boarding house.  Arlie and Wanda lived with Arlie’s parents in Wesleyville. 

In 1932, Thomas’ father Ezekiel died of heart disease at the Kings County Home in Waterville, Nova Scotia. 

In the 1936 Erie city directory, Thomas was listed as a fireman, residing at 3452 Buffalo Road in Wesleyville.  Arlie and Wanda lived nearby at 3820 Buffalo Road. 

Thomas registered for the 1942 WWII draft, from 3627 Buffalo Road, Wesleyville.  At that time, he again listed his birthplace as Boston.  However, since earliest records all show him born in Nova Scotia, I believe that he was Canadian by birth.  He lived with C. Windell, and was employed by the New York Central Railroad in Erie. 

I believe that Thomas died 27 December 1968 in Harborcreek, Erie County, PA.  There is an entry for Thomas Joseph Hodges at Wintergreen Gorge Cemetery in Erie.   It doesn’t have his birthdate for cross reference, but other family members are buried there.  Arlie had remarried, died in 1947, and is buried there with her second husband. Thomas’ daughter Wanda is buried adjacent to her mother. 

An on-line tree with Thomas and Arlie lists his death date as 12 January 1993, and I am attempting to contact the owner of that tree to determine her source for that information.  I was not able to find Thomas in the Social Security Death Index.  When the Social Security system was being planned, railroad workers petitioned to have a separate Railroad Retirement system.  Therefore, Thomas was probably never enrolled in Social Security. 




  1. James R. Hiner said,

    December 31, 2014 at 16:28

    I am the grandson of Thomas J. Hodges. My mother was Wanda Hodges Hiner. He died in December of 1968 in Buffalo, NY and I buried him in Wintergreen Gorge Cemetery near Erie, Pa. the same location where my mother and Grandmother Arlie are buried. He was an Engineer on the NY Central railroad and did not have SS. He had the RR retirement board benefits.

    Jim Hiner

    • sooze471 said,

      December 31, 2014 at 17:02

      Hi Jim – Thanks for taking the time to read and comment. Always nice to meet a new cousin, or in this case, 5th cousin. If you are working on your family history, I have quite a bit on the Hodges family of Nova Scotia and am happy to share.


  2. James R. Hiner said,

    December 31, 2014 at 19:27


    Thanks for doing all this work. This is one side of the family we never had any information on as my Grandfather was a real loner and didn’t share much information. He did say he had a grandmother Quinlan and McCormick which you verified in your writings. He was Roman Catholic.

    After reading some of your material I am still trying to identify the parents/lineage of Jonathan C Hodges. Jonathan C was married to Susanna Banks but there seems to be a number of ancestors with John or Jonathan as their first name. Very confusing.

    Looking forward to reading more.


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