Ella Maria Trask Blackler (1867-1951)
According to Norwood’s Annual Report of 1951, there were 181 burials in town during the year, only one of these occurred at Old Parish Cemetery. That was the funeral of Ella Maria Trask Blackler. This is her story.
Ella Maria Trask was born on February 22, 1867 in Beverly, Massachusetts. Her parents were Charles Trask, a brick maker, and Mary Elizabeth Burke Trask. What happened to Charles Trask is uncertain but Mary E. Burke Trask, 35, married Charles Bailey on August 23, 1873 in Dedham. Bailey was 48 and this was his second marriage. In the 1880 Census the family is living in Norwood. Along with Charles, a carpet printer, and his wife, Mary, there resided a daughter Ella Trask, 12, and a new son, George Bailey, 1.
On March 5, 1885, Ella Trask, 18, married John Blackler in Lynn, Massachusetts. Blackler, 23, worked in a shoe factory in that city. The Blackler family remained in Lynn for at least 15 years; they were there, along with a son, William, in 1900. By the 1910 U.S. Census, however, Ella and John Blackler were living in Hannibal, Missouri where John was a shoemaker.
In the 1920 Census, Ella Trask Blackler was back in Norwood, listed as widowed, and a live-in servant/housekeeper in the Washington Street household of George and Louisa Lepper. Lepper was in the business of auto repair and owned the Norwood Garage, also on Washington Street.
Although one source notes that John Blackler died in Hannibal, Missouri in 1924, he may have died earlier, thus making Ella a widow by 1920. We cannot be sure.
Ella Maria Trask Blackler died at the Victoria Rest Haven in Norwood on February 26, 1951 at the age of 83. Prior to living at the Rest Haven, she had lived at 97 Walnut Avenue. She was interred in Old Parish Cemetery – the graveyard’s sole burial that year – on February 28, 1951 in the family plot of Charles Bailey, her stepfather, and her mother, Mary Burke Trask Bailey, who had died in 1903 and 1926 respectively.