Back on June 30th, I wrote about my grandmother’s cousin, Henry P. Lason. He had been in the Army in the Philippines from 1901 to 1903. He stayed for a while in the Philippines after his service was over and was a policeman (see photo on that post). I was looking for more information on him and although he didn’t get a military pension, his mother did. I got her pension file and it gave a lot of information. Jane A. (Purdy) Lason filed for a mother’s pension on 8 May 1905. Documents stated that Henry was in Willard State Hospital, Willard, NY. That was a hospital for patients that had mental problems. The documents stated that Henry had dementia that was caused by his having typhoid fever in the Philippines from 9 Oct. 1901 to 16 Jan. 1902. Typhoid fever is a bacterial disease and it doesn’t usually caused long term effects. So I don’t know what really caused Henry’s death. He wasn’t sick when he was on his way home from the Philippines in May 1904 and he sent a letter to my grandmother. Henry died a week after his mother applied for her pension (15 April 1905) at Willard State Hospital and not in Tompkins County where I thought he died.
Jane Ann (Purdy) Lason was born in 1840 and her marriage record is in her pension file. She married George Washington Lason on 3 Sept. 1860 in Hornellsville, Steuben Co., NY. The birth dates of 6 of their children are in her pension file. The other two children had died young. When she filed for a pension in 1905 she also noted that her husband was residing at the Soldiers and Sailors (Veteran’s) Hospital in Bath, NY. After her husband, George died in 1914 she also applied for a widow’s pension as George had been in the Civil War and was wounded and had been at Andersonville Prison for a while. The last document in Jane’s pension file was one stating that she died 17 Aug. 1919 in Owego, NY and it even said that she died at 31 Lake Street.
The pension file for Jane was the kind you hope for. It gave lots of family information that helped to connect this part of the Lason family. I just I hadn’t waited years to research this part of the family.
Special thanks go to Larry Wehrle for sharing the photo of Jane.