Great Grandfather is a Mystery


I'm writing to try to understand a mystery I've been trying to untangle for 35 years. My great-grandfather

Charles Albert Nelson. What he says and what is provable will send you chasing your tail.

He states the following: he's born in Clifton, West Virginia, on February 22, 1898. There is no Clifton, West Virginia. On his marriage record, he states his father is James Nelson, born in Pennsylvania. Mother Maria Gallagher was born in Pennsylvania.

He does die in North Carolina in 1926 May. He was a marine. He's only on one census record, and that's from 1920. In the last 20 years, I have researched West Virginia, Pennsylvania, and a small town in Ohio that borders Pennsylvania. There are 100% no records that show Charles with James and Marie Nelson.

He should have been in the 1900s and 1910s, but he was not there. I have his military file. He lies a lot. First, he has no friends or family, they are all dead. Then Dad is alive in 1920, dead in 1921, and alive again in 1924. and died three times after that. Mom is dead in 1917 on his marriage record, but I have a declaration of facts that a family friend states mom passes away after he enlists.  I am trying to obtain his Navy Yard record to see if there is any information in it.  So how does he miss two censuses with mom and dad? 


Carol Ann Haughey

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