The six-month-old son of Frances and Francis Ludnun* died this date, July 9th, in 1848 of Hydrocephalus and was buried at Bethel Burying Ground. Ms. Ludnun was thirty-one-years-old at the time of her son’s death; Mr. Ludnun was thirty-six-years-old. She was born in Philadelphia while he was born in Delaware, according to the 1850 U.S. Census. At the time of the baby’s death, there were three other Ludnun children: Daniel (15 y/o), Charles (13 y/o), and Anne (3 y/o). All of the children were born in Philadelphia.
The Ludnun family lived in a 10’x10′ room on Wheat Street in the far southeastern part of the county, very close to the Philadelphia Navy Yard. For this, they paid $.50 a week in rent. Mr. Ludnun reported in the 1847 Census that he earned $4 a week as a laborer, likely at the Navy Yard. Ms. Ludnun worked in the home.
In August of 1844, the neighborhood near the Navy Yard was raked by white mob violence. A gang raided the Navy Yard and stole two cannons with the goal of destroying Catholic churches in the neighborhood (Southwark). The city’s newspapers did not report the violence to the local Black community that more than likely happened.
The six-month-old son of Frances and Francis Ludnun died on an overcast day in July that saw intermittent showers. The temperature only rose to 70 degrees.
*In addition to the spelling of the family name as “Ludnun,” I have also seen it spelled “Lednum,” “Ludnam,” and “Lednun.”