About Ralph Waldo Emerson Dunham, Sr.
Ralph Waldo Emerson DUNHAM
Ruth Lucille ARMOUR
Husband: Ralph Waldo Emerson DUNHAM
Birth: 25 Dec 1894, Argonia, Dixon Twp., Sumner Co., KS
Death: 4 Oct 1970, Wichita, Sedgwick Co., KS
Occupation: cafe owner; auto mechanic; tooling dept. of Boeing Aircraft
Father: Jacob William DUNHAM
Mother: Mary Ann KEARNEY
Marriage: 3 Oct 1915, Wichita, Sedgwick Co., KS
Wife: Ruth Lucille ARMOUR
Birth: 1 Sep 1900, IL
Death: 25 Nov 1926, Wichita, Sedgwick Co., KS
Father: Harry Ellington ARMOUR
Mother: Gabriella CLARK
Children — born in Wichita, Sedgwick Co., KS:
1. Ralph Waldo Emerson DUNHAM, Jr., b. Aug 1916
2. Stanley Armour DUNHAM, b. 23 Mar 1918
Keywords for search engines: USA, US, United States, Illinois, Kansas
1. Marriage Record:
2. 1920 Census Every-Name-Index/Images (online at Ancestry.com, Image #20 of 25): 226 Walnut, Wichita (Ward 5), Sedgwick Co., KS, Roll T625_550, p. 179B, SN 10B, SD 8, ED 150, enumeraed 10 Jan 1920, official enumeration date 1 Jan 1920 (extracted by Diana Gale Matthiesen):°
RALPH WALDO EMERSON DUNHAM
'If you love your kids, they feel it'
September 9, 2007
BY SCOTT FORNEK Political Editor
He was named for one of America's greatest poets and essayists, but Barack Obama's great-grandfather Ralph Waldo Emerson Dunham never cared for his name.
"He really didn't like it that much," said Virginia Goeldner, 72, one of Dunham's daughters. "It embarrassed him."
Dunham was an outdoorsman who liked to fish and hunt. He raised German shepherds for shows. But he had a tender side.
"He was a very soft and gentle person, a very soft, sensitive type fellow," Goeldner said. "He told me once: If a dad has to tell their kids whether he loves them or not, he's not doing his job right.
"He said, 'If you love your kids, they feel it.' "
Goeldner's mother was Dunham's second wife. His first wife -- Obama's great-grandmother -- took her own life in 1926. Obama's grandfather, then just 8, found her body. After his wife's suicide, Dunham sent his two sons to live with his mother- and father-in-law.
Dunham was born in Kansas on Christmas Day, 1894.
"I can remember Daddy talking about going hunting with his brothers, and Grandma would cook it," Goeldner said. "She would cook rabbits or the stuff they shot."
LIke most of his family, Dunham worked in the aircraft industry in Wichita, Kansas, which touted itself as "The Air Capital of the World" in the early 20th century.
Dunham worked in the tooling department of Boeing Aircraft Co.
"He never laid a hand on any of his kids," said Goeldner. "It wasn't like he would tell you what you should do. You did what you knew he wanted you to do just to make him pleased."
Ralph Waldo Emerson Dunham's Timeline
December 25, 1894
Argonia, KS, USA
October 3, 1915
Kansas, United States
July 20, 1917
Kansas, United States
March 23, 1918
Wichita, Sedgwick, Kansas, United States
October 4, 1974
Wichita, KS, USA