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Posted: 1182146549000
Classification: Query
Were records (names) not kept of who was in the WPA project?
I believe my father was part of a project, but have not been able to determine where. He was exempt from the regular army, but spoke of "being a cook in the army" and I suspect he was referring to the CCC/WPA program.
Posted: 1196552790000
Classification: Query
You probably have to narrow your search geographically first. Where did he live?
Posted: 1196556675000
Classification: Query
Surnames: Grimm,Gordon,Whitfield
Depends....ready for a long story. The earliest record on Dad was Oct 1936 when he started working for the L & N RR (he was born c 1911).
He claimed a family that did exist as his own, but I've definitely proven he wasn't part of them...All his official records show the parents as his and that he was born in SD (where the family lived at the time) and lived in Gainesville, FL (where the family moved c 1920). This family had 5 children and I've traced 4 of them to their graves with the 5th (Ward or Edward Grimm b c 1913) only until the 1930 census (he was listed with his mother and sister in Gainesville.
My theory is Dad and Ward were "in the army (CCC/WPA)" together from the early 30's until Dad showed up in Louisville applying for a job with the RR. I surmise that's where he would have been with the CCC/WPA or possibly in the Atlanta Georgia area where Ward's mother and sister moved right after the 1930 census.
Dad went by the name Jackson Whitfield Grimm and once told me the middle name was his mother's maiden name (Ward's mother was Verna Gordon). He also told me he was orphaned at about 10 or 11 and since his parents had no siblings (which isn't true of Ward's parents)and there were no grandparents, he was placed in an orphanage but ran away and was on his own from then on.
Ironically, I found a Jackson Whitfield (born 1911) living with his Grandmother in the 1920 census in Alabama and cannot trace what happened to him. She died shortly after that census. I'm working on this theory at the present time.

Any suggestions or thoughts will be appreciated...and if you need particular information, just ask.

Posted: 1196609083000
Classification: Query
If you're trying to find his real parentage, then looking for WPA records might not help very much. I would think that he would just give the "official" information to the WPA, rather than the "real" info. (Would he even know the real info....?) Also, I doubt that he would need to provide his parentage....?

Maybe you should track down orphanages in SD first.

Also, have you tried to find a birth certificate for him? Where in SD would he have been born?
Posted: 1196614042000
Classification: Query
Write to me at for further details.

Posted: 1199391416000
Classification: Query
You are correct....and yes, I've checked with South Dakota as well as Florida....Nothing comes up on his birth or the family accident.

Thanks for responding.

Posted: 1199757095000
Classification: Query
When and where did your father die? Is he in the Social Security Death Index?

Perhaps he was really an aunt's son? Or Verna's "love child"?
Posted: 1199761196000
Classification: Query
He passed in 1963. He had worked for the RR, so he wasn't entitled for SS benefits.

I met once (sometime ago) with a gal who would have been Dad's niece and showed her the pictures I had of him and she had no idea who he was. She didn't have any idea what had happened to one of her uncles either. The family was quite dysfunctional.

I'm on another angle....There was a Jackson Whitfield Grimm born in 1913 in Shelby County, Alabama and in the 1920 census living with his grandmother. She died in 1921 and I've not been able to find out what happened to the boy. I just received an address of a person in that county who might be able to tell me what happened to the Grimm's in that area.

I may repeat myself here, but Dad talked about being in the army as a cook. Based on his physical condition he was not draftable in the regular army, so I think he was in the WPA program and met one of the sons of the family Dad later claimed as his own. As for the reason, that's an unknown.

Posted: 1204990413000
Classification: Query
Have you searched for copies of birth and death certs? I found good info on them
Posted: 1205060014000
Classification: Query
Surnames: Grimm, Gordon, possibly Whitfield
That was my first course of action, but when there's no BC and it's unknown what his originality was, the task at hand is difficult, to say the least. His DC details were what the family had been told by him throughout the years, thus compounding the the only course of action left was to go with what proofs were available, i.e. his 4F notice and stories he told that seemed logical, but thanks for your suggestion.
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