died on February 1, 1979. Or so it seems. Thanks to an anonymous tipster on my blog post about June
, I was directed to a listing for "June E Corbett"
. The grave info seems to fall in line with what we know about June, but there's no image of the actual grave. Thankfully, I also discovered the Arizona Gravestones
project, which provides photos of every single tombstone behind the gate of the Valley View Cemetery in Arizona. And here is the grave
that appears to be that of June Mansfield (re-named Corbett after her last marriage):
Grave of June E Corbett at Valley View Cemetery in Cottonwood, Arizona. Photo by Kelly Townsend.
The last published examination of June's life appeared in Vol. 3
of the Nexus Journal
, in an article by James Decker entitled "June Miller: Remnants of a Life" (2006). In it, references to June's personal information on the U.S. Social Security Death Index
establish that she'd died in Phoenix, Maricopa County, Arizona in the 85017 zip code
. The death date is listed only as February 1979 (no exact day). Although she died in Maricopa County, her burial apparently took place in Yavapai County, about 130 miles away.
Before making any definitive statements about this in fact being the grave of Henry's June, I need to determine factual connections that help verify this assertion. The Arizona Gravestones website provides additional information not found on the gravestone, which I assume is drawn from burial records.
The birth date on this grave stone is Janury 28, 1902. The birth date listed with the SSDI
is January 28, 1901
, but, as Decker points out in his article, "most of the biographers agree on 28 January 1902" [p.88], adding that, on the original Social Security applications made in New York in 1956 (and 1958), June had listed her birthdate as January 29
, 1902 (one day off) [p.91].
The birth info provided by Arizona Gravestones lists her birthdate as "June 28, 1902"--this appears to be a transciption error related to her name being June. It also mentions that her birth place was New York; this is not in fact true, but she was
raised there from the time she was a young girl.
So far so good: The birthdate, whether the 28th or 29th, seems to check out.
The grave marker states February 1, 1979 as June's death. The SSDI record lists simply 'February 1979.' To me, this means one of two things: 1) SSDI made a clerical error of omission, and the exact date could be any in February, including February 1st; 2) June died in the month
of February, but perhaps her body wasn't found for several days or weeks, so a death month was determind to be February but the exact date was never known. In both cases, February 1979 seems to be right.
The death date checks out as well.
The SSDI record places June in Phoenix zip code region 85017 at the time of her death. According to this zip code map website
(image below), this area is in Alhambra, bounded by Glendale Ave (N), N. 35th Ave (W), W. Thomas Rd (S), and Black Canyon Fwy (E). 130 miles north of Phoenix is Cottonwood
, in Yavapai County. Valley View Cemetery is located in Cottonwood, Clarkdale. This is in the vicinity of Phoenix, which is encouraging for verification purposes. I imagine it was much cheaper to bury her this far out of the city than right in Phoenix.
MIDDLE AND LAST NAMES
"June E Corbett": June's middle name was Edith. June married Stratford Corbett in the 1930s, not long after her divorce from Henry [Decker, p. 86].
Although her gravestone makes no mention of it, Arizona Graves notes interestingly that June's occupation was "social worker." This also matches the life of Henry's June, who, in the 1960s, was working for the Department of Welfare in New York City 
June's gravestone is dedicated to a "beloved sister." June had a sister and three brothers (according to early census records). Decker [p.90] connects a closer relationship between June and her brother Edward (Ignatz), who lived in Arizona, than to her other brothers Sigmund and Herman (with no mention of elder sister Gustava).
Feedback on this hypothesis is encouraged in the Comments section below.
If you haven't already, check out the recent posting on the Walking Paris With Henry Miller website regarding new documents that help clarify the origins of June and her immigrant family.
 Dick, Kenneth, Henry Miller: Colossus Of One; p. 210. Dick mentions that he met June in July 1965, and that this was her vocation at the time.