PDA

View Full Version : At what age did your ancestors die?



Judith
12-18-2016, 02:16 PM
I have been pleasantly surprised to find ancestors from the 1700s who were in their 80s and 90s when they died. They were simple country folk, joiners, shoe makers blacksmiths etc. In the 1800s this dropped because they had moved to the cities and many became coal miners. Presumably many of the men started smoking too.
What does everyone else find? Healthy country folk living to a decent age?

rms2
12-18-2016, 02:33 PM
I have ancestors who lived long lives, and I have ancestors who died young. It's a mix.

I now know I won't die young (too late for that).

My dad is still going strong at 86, but his dad died at age 35. There you go.

Stephen1986
12-18-2016, 04:35 PM
My oldest known ancestor was my 5x great grandmother on my dad's side Catherine Clegg (nee Jones), who was born in Barmouth, Merionethshire (now Gwynedd), Wales in about 1783. She (and possibly her parents) moved to Manchester, England at some point between then and the 1820s. She died on 24th November 1884 due to senile decay. Her daughter, and sister of my ancestor, pre-deceased her in her early fifties a few months earlier due to a spinal disease. She's the second oldest person in my tree, behind Roseanne Moxham (nee Rainford), who married first cousin three times removed. She was born in Preston, England on 18th July 1899 and died on 29th August 2004 in McKeesport, Pennsylvania, USA (the Moxhams emigrated in the 1920s, my relative becoming a steel mill worker). Her husband died in the 1950s due to complications of surgery,whilst their daughter is still alive at the age of 93.

My dad is still alive at 60 and is in fairly good health. My mum died in 2004 aged 47 due to multiple medical complications relating to polycystic kidney disease, which has and is affecting quite a few people on her side of the family.

Paternal grandfather - Died at the age of 76 from stomach cancer, he had smoked for several years.
Paternal grandmother - Died at the age of 63 from bronchitis in hospital after falling down the stairs and breaking her hip.
Maternal grandfather - Died at the age of of 82 from an haemorrhaging artery.
Maternal grandmother - Died at the age of 35 from a brain haemorrhage which was a complication of her kidney disease.

Paternal great grandfather - Died at the age of 60 from hepatitis B and cirrhosis.
Paternal great grandmother - Died at the age of 68 from a cerebral haemorrhage.
Paternal great grandfather - Died at the age of 64, but I don't know what the cause of his death was.
Paternal great grandmother - Died at the age of 73 from cancer.
Maternal great grandfather - Died at the age of 49 from myocarditis, emphysema and bronchitis.
Maternal great grandmother - Died at the age of 58, she was hit by a car after wandering into the street late at night and suffered severe head injuries, dying a couple of days later.
Maternal great grandfather - Died at the age of 78, but I don't know what the cause of his death was.
Maternal great grandmother - Died at the age of 46 from stomach cancer.

In earlier generations, it seems most of my ancestors died in their sixties and seventies, although some lived into their eighties and nineties, a few examples include -

My 5x great grandfather on my direct patrilineal line, Thomas Smith, who was born about 1768 and died in 1855 at 87. He may be the Thomas Smith mentioned in a newspaper article in the 1830s who was marrying his seventh wife and had over 20 children with the previous six.

My 5x great grandfather, also on my dad's side, Daniel Edmondson, was born c1782 and died in 1868 at 86.

My 6x great grandfather, again on my dad's side of the family, William Proctor, who was born c1781 and was listed in the 1871 Census as a 91 year old. I don't know when he died, but I can't find him in the 1881 Census, so I presume he died before then.

My 3x great grandmother on my mum's side, Anne Mary Callaghan (nee Keough), was born c1832 and died in 1920. She married a soldier and during her life he was stationed in places such as China and what is now South Africa, which is where their oldest child and the brother of my ancestor was born.

vettor
12-18-2016, 04:58 PM
Paternal grandfather - Died at the age of 88 from Intestinal cyst
Paternal grandmother - Died at the age of 90 from old age.
Maternal grandfather - Died at the age of of 80 from Bowel cancer ?
Maternal grandmother - Died at the age of 79 from a Heart attack

Paternal great grandfather - Died at the age of 71 from unknown
Paternal great grandmother - Died at the age of 52 from a unknown.
Paternal great grandfather - Died at the age of 40, from a farming accident.
Paternal great grandmother - Died at the age of 50 from starvation , inability to move with prior injury during WW1 .
Maternal great grandfather - Died at the age of 69 from Pneumonia.
Maternal great grandmother - Died at the age of 71, from a heart attack
Maternal great grandfather - Died at the age of 58, "accidently" shot during WW1 - non combatant.
Maternal great grandmother - Died at the age of 69 from heart attack

Father - died at age of 86 from lung haemorrhage from Pneumonia

CelticGerman
12-18-2016, 05:11 PM
Averages of ancestors with data available:
Generation 3 (grand-parents): 84 (83/86/75/92)
Generation 4: 69 (84/77/77/71/73/41/35/90)
Generation 5: 67
Generation 6: 65
Generation 7: 61
Generation 8: 59
Generation 9: 62

Oldest ancestors:
102 (1567-1670), female, 13137
92 (1908-2001), female
90 (1877-1967), female
89 (1803-1892), female
87 (1717-1805), female
87 (1850-1937), male

Adrian Stevenson
12-18-2016, 05:49 PM
Paternal Grandfather 85
Paternal Grandmother 87
Maternal Grandfather 58 (Cerebral Haemorrhage while pushing me in my Pram)
Maternal Grandmother 89

Paternal Great Grandfather 82
Paternal Great Grandmother 85
Paternal Great Grandfather 81
Paternal Great Grandmother 39 (Chronic Nephritis)
Maternal Great Grandfather 33 (Accident down a Coal Mine)
Maternal Great Grandmother 88
Maternal Great Grandfather 77
Maternal Great Grandmother 79

Cheers, Ade.

Wing Genealogist
12-18-2016, 08:09 PM
I have a paternal ancestor, Martha (Chubbuck) Maxim (1741-1844) who died at the age of 102. It is said that on her hundredth birthday, to prove her youth and agility, she jumped over a three-rail fence.

I have many instances of ancestors and ancestral uncles & aunts living into their 90s. They all lived in rural areas, and no history of smokers in my family.

I also have instances of ancestors dying fairly young (50s) due to a variety of health issues (such as stroke or cardio-renal disease).

firemonkey
12-18-2016, 11:00 PM
My surname line

Father still alive at 86
Grandfather 64
Gt 74
2 Gt 86
3gt 84

Erik
12-19-2016, 03:43 PM
My grandmother z"l just passed away this morning at 79 years old.

Deftextra
12-19-2016, 04:01 PM
My Great grand-mother died 2 years ago (My fathers grand mother). The only great-grand parent I knew personally. Her exact age was unknown, but my grand-mother insist she was over 100 years old. When I saw some of her pictures from the 1970-80, she already looked very old, so I would not be surprised If her age was anywhere near a 100 years.

AJL
12-19-2016, 04:58 PM
My grandmother z"l just passed away this morning at 79 years old.

Very sorry to hear it.

Erik
12-19-2016, 05:19 PM
Very sorry to hear it.

Thank you, I appreciate it

A Norfolk L-M20
12-19-2016, 05:27 PM
Yes, I do see that with my rural working class ancestors, from the 18th to early 20th centuries. Some of them, I suspect particularly the men, lived to ripe old ages. I suspect that if people could live beyond their teens, that they had a good chance of living until old age. I suspect it was the high infant and child mortality that distorts the official national statistics. Most of my direct ancestors, unless they had unlucky encounters with something like horse kicks, or meningitis, lived until their 60s, 70s, or 80s. I suspect that women sometimes died prematurely of child birth. I see more widowers than widows. However, these widowers swiftly remarried, perhaps for someone to care for the children.

Here are some of my examples:

Robert Nicholls died 1790, Norfolk age 77
Daniel Briggs, died 1794, Norfiolk age 76
Mary Smith, died 1798, Norfolk, age 81
William Ling, died 1832, Norfolk age 77
John Briggs, died 1841, Norfolk age 87
Benjamin Merrison died 1844, Norfolk age 85
Thomas Dingle, died 1841, Norfolk age 86
Martha Rowland died 1861, Norfolk age 82
Elizabeth Harris died 1847, Norfolk age 79
Edward Brucker died 1832, Oxfordshire age 75
William Thacker died 1874, Norfolk age 78
William Lawn died 1846, Norfolk age 90
Ann Dove died 1860, Norfolk age 74
Thomas Tovell died 1859, Norfolk age 74
Robert Waters died 1855, Norfolk age 84

and so on it goes! Those are just a selection for your time period. Sure they were not average, but living to an old age seems to have been far more common during the 18th and 19th Century rural working classes in England, than national statistics suggest. That's why I wonder if the high child mortality rates give a false impression to the average life span.

Edit: Commiserations to you Erik :-(

Awale
12-19-2016, 06:39 PM
Paternal Grandfather: Died this year due to old age in his early 90s to late 80s or so
Paternal Grandmother: 80+ and still alive

Maternal Grandfather: 60s-70s (died due to liver disease, from what I recall being told. He died long before I was born...)
Maternal Grandmother: 70+ and still alive

I've never asked about other ancestors but my paternal great grandfather seemed to still be alive when I was like 10 so he must've been quite old since I think he was at least 20 when my gramps was born (can't be sure) and my maternal great grandmother died in her 80s or 90s a few years back but yeah... I've never checked up on how long anyone else lived. If their life-spans are any indication; I might just have a long life ahead of me, or I might just die tomorrow... We'll see.

Power77
12-19-2016, 07:55 PM
Paternal Grandfather: Died in his 40s when my father was only 5.
Paternal Grandmother: Died in her 60s (I think:P).

Maternal Grandfather: Still alive at age 79.
Maternal Grandmother: Died of cancer in 2008 at age 63.

Judith
12-19-2016, 08:36 PM
Having started this thread I should give some details
On great grandparents to keep it shorter
Thomas 94
Annie 72
Albert 86
Lizzie 76
Samuel 51 smoker and worked in mines
Gertrude 78
William 62
Nelly. 82

I was aware that the average life expectancy had gone up hugely over time (due to better sanitation and reduced child mortality) and my gran used to quote "3 score years and 10" as life expectancy. So I was surprised to find burials of the 80+ in the 1700s.
Thanks guys, I loved the vision of an 102year old jumping fences.
Sorry about your gran Erik, not good timing and I apologise for raising the thread right now

Saetro
12-19-2016, 08:42 PM
Depends.
Recent ancestors - 80-101. Formerly often as late as 60s, 70s if they were lucky. (And if I was lucky enough to find a death record!)
Compared with those in 1700s and 1800s, that is mainly due to:
1) Better birth and child care
So those mothers who went to hospital and were infected with puerperal fever don't get that anymore. (Because doctors wash their hands.)
And families are smaller, so mothers don't go on giving birth until their bodies wear out. (Not a lot of these, but a few.)
Also clean milk/infant foods.
2) Clean water
Some of my people died in a cholera epidemic or in typhoid outbreaks - in overcrowded cities, on cramped migrant ships, in half-built mining towns.
3) Safer work and life conditions
My mining ancestors were harmed by dust itself and by the toxic metals they mined and were smelted in their area.
It is a source of pride that some of them and their cousins worked to devise means of reducing dust dangers and insisted on its implementation.
They may have done this at this end of the earth, but many others around the world over the last century copied and benefited.
The abolition of horses also made farming and travel much safer. (You think car accidents are bad. Read about horse accidents!)

Of course, all of our direct ancestors lived longer than the average. Why? Because they survived to parenthood.
So, in general, we come from the lucky ones.

One of the most misleading numbers in statistics is age expectation from birth.
At many times in the past, the first year was a difficult one, and often, the first 5 years also.
If figures are discounted for that, the average age expectation rises dramatically.
A better figure might perhaps come from average age at death - for those over 10.
These figures are certainly around at present for those who pass 50 or so. Any number of pension planners have a fairly good idea of how long a new retiree will last!

sparkey
12-19-2016, 11:00 PM
For me:

Grandparents (average of 74 and counting): 71(heart failure)/alive at 89/alive at 80/57(cancer)

Great-grandparents (average of 80, or 87 without the outlier): 81(cancer)/95/31(pneumonia)/82/84/87/81(cancer)/96

Great-great-grandparents (average of 75): 84/61(heart failure)/83/72(kidney disease)/86/72/80(heart disease)/64/59(illness due to dust)/74/88/65(cerebral hemmorhage)/82*/89*/79/64

Great-great-great-grandparents (average of 67): 42*(blunt force trauma)/?/82/84/80/73/72/56*/41/72/?/?/85/82(influenza)/64/34*/70/52/80/86(lobar pneumonia)/70/38/77/73(appendicitis)/69*/66*/?/?/62/84*/63/48

Great-great-great-great grandparents (average of 67): 38*/?/?/?/77*/85/70*/?/?/?/68*/76/90/24*/51*/68*/82/?/86/62*/48*/70/51*/74*/93/81*/59*/85*/74*/81*/?/32/83/79/59/71/25*(exposure)/35/91/87/82/67/60*/82*/83*/96/61/86*/?/29*/71*/44*/?/?/?/29*/82*/57*/76/80/72/70/40(gunshot wound in the thigh)/75*

*-estimate

Tolan
12-20-2016, 10:38 AM
Below, two graphs from my family tree:
The first concerns all individuals, including children whose infant mortality was enormous, which dramatically reduces life expectancy.
The second is that my ancestors (ie adults who had children))

2978 people
http://gen3553.pagesperso-orange.fr/images/esperancevie1.png


Only my ancestors (1214 people):
http://gen3553.pagesperso-orange.fr/images/esperancevie2.png

vettor
12-20-2016, 05:23 PM
Below, two graphs from my family tree:
The first concerns all individuals, including children whose infant mortality was enormous, which dramatically reduces life expectancy.
The second is that my ancestors (ie adults who had children))

2978 people
http://gen3553.pagesperso-orange.fr/images/esperancevie1.png


Only my ancestors (1214 people):
http://gen3553.pagesperso-orange.fr/images/esperancevie2.png

You will find that if you have a family tree covering the 17th, 18th, 19th and 20th century the average age of life would be between 40 and 50 , taking into consideration child mortality. Your graphs are slightly higher, for curiosity did you add these early child deaths that every family had to deal with?

Tolan
12-21-2016, 05:04 AM
You will find that if you have a family tree covering the 17th, 18th, 19th and 20th century the average age of life would be between 40 and 50 , taking into consideration child mortality. Your graphs are slightly higher, for curiosity did you add these early child deaths that every family had to deal with?

The green columns are the life expectancy per century.
17 and 18th centuries: 29 and 34 years.

It is during the 19th that infant mortiality seems to be drastically lowered!

However, this has no scientific value, because although I recorded all deaths of brothers and sisters of my ancestors that I found by chance, I did not seek all their deaths.

geebee
12-22-2016, 12:38 AM
You will find that if you have a family tree covering the 17th, 18th, 19th and 20th century the average age of life would be between 40 and 50 , taking into consideration child mortality. Your graphs are slightly higher, for curiosity did you add these early child deaths that every family had to deal with?

I think part of the problem is that even adjusting for "child mortality" is insufficient, because the standard definition seems to mean the death rate of those under 5. That's too short a time frame. Not every child would likely have encountered all of the "childhood illnesses" by 5. Yet 6-18 year olds are not generally included in "child mortality".

I'd want to see a chart that only focused on life expectancy of those who survive to their 18th birthday, at least. I suspect it was higher than life expectancy at 6, even in the 17th century.

geebee
12-22-2016, 07:18 PM
I did a review of my most recent ancestors ages at death, back to my 2nd great grandparents.

One caveat is that on my maternal grandfather's side, there is a question as to who his parents -- and therefore all of his ancestors beyond them -- actually were. There is reason to believe that the people who raised him as their son were not, in fact, his biological parents.

So my father and mother died at ages 85 and 71, respectively. Average: 78

My father's father was 69; his mother was 80. My mother's father was also 69; her mother was 90. Average: 77

My paternal grandfather's father was 89; his mother was just 40. My paternal grandmother's father was 61; her mother was 53. My maternal grandfather's possible father was 72; his possible mother was 81. My maternal grandmother's father was only 49; her mother was 69. Average: 64.25

Now ... about that "possible" connection. Some time ago, a possible 2nd cousin was identified for me at 23andMe. This cousin was definitely on my maternal grandfather's side, and there was a connection. However, it turned out that the connection was by marriage only -- the 2nd cousin's grandfather's brother was married to my grandfather's sister. Further, the couple themselves never had any children.

Obviously, something was not "as advertised". And the more I looked, it seemed to be on my side rather than on my cousin's side. For one thing, I was finding quite a few people among my DNA relatives that appeared to be connected on his grandfather's side; but they lacked any apparent paper trail connection to my grandfather.

Then I found a probable 2nd cousin at Ancestry, who just happened to be a 1st cousin to the other 2nd cousin. Their common grandfather was the same man as the one whose brother married my grandfather's sister.

This led me to try an experiment at Ancestry. I made a new tree in which I connected my grandfather as brother to the 2nd cousins' mutual grandfather. Suddenly, things began to fit. I'm now seeing 110 "Shared Ancestor Hints".

So ... back to ages at death.

My paternal grandfather's paternal grandfather (my 2nd great grandfather) died at 57; my 2nd great grandmother died at 41. His maternal grandfather was 63; and his maternal grandmother was 72. Average: 58.25

My paternal grandmother's paternal grandfather was 52; her paternal grandmother was 79. My grandmother's maternal grandfather was 61; her grandmother was 77. Average: 67.25

I don't know my maternal grandfather's -- possible -- paternal grandfather's age at death, or that of his possible paternal grandmother. His possible maternal grandfather was 83, and his possible maternal grandmother was 50. Average for the two known: 66.5

My maternal grandmother's paternal grandfather was 57 when he died; her paternal grandmother was 52. Her maternal grandfather was 85; and her maternal grandmother was 66. Average: 65

JohnLightbridge
01-05-2017, 11:41 PM
At what age did your ancestors die?

I have ancestors who lived to 105 for the husband & 98 for the last wife [of three] in 1623 with 15 children and at one point 158 grandchildren, 139 who made it into adulthood. I can't imagine the "family gatherings" as they really didn't live far apart.

On the other hand, my grandfather essentially smoked himself into an early grave at 53. His sister is 93, his wife is 102.


As others have found it is mixed. Setting [rural vs. urban], work [laborour vs. trades/professional], wealth [poor vs. well off], etc., etc. all play a factor.

But for myself longevity is on both sides. Going back to the mid-1800s aside from war, disease and accidents/work almost everyone made it into their 70s.

procoptodon
01-28-2017, 10:41 AM
I have a grandmother thats very old about 81. But shes getting sick and cant' walk anymore. Her time is almost up.

Calas
01-28-2017, 03:33 PM
I had an ancestor who was struck by & dragged underneath a runaway carriage for a bit when he was 21, lived to be 82, in 1752 if letters recounting the tale are to be believed. My cousin's great-grandfather, on the other hand, died when he was 31 in the War and his maternal great-grandmother died 28 in childbirth.

Sometimes, it seems, living lengthy lives came down to simple dumb luck and, of course, good genes. How many 100+ seniors nowadays get on the news saying they drink booze like water or smoke like a chimney and yet almost every health professional shakes their finger at average joe saying you can't do that.

Tolan
01-28-2017, 05:42 PM
I have an ancestor who would have died at the age of 110 years according her burial act (1657).
Although the ages of death are very approximate at this time, she certainly died very old, because, her grandson, aged 41, also my ancestor, died before her.
13690

angscoire
01-28-2017, 11:47 PM
My great-great-great grandmother lived to 103 (1794 -1897....the fall of Robespierre to Queen Victoria's Diamond Jubilee ) .

Three great-grandmothers died at 82 , 84 and 95.

Three great-great grandparents died in their thirties - all three were second generation Irish , born in cities and died of tuberculosis. Two of these were a couple in Edinburgh who died within a year of each other (1888-89), leaving my great grandpa orphaned aged six.