Monday, August 27, 2018

Ancestors, Labor Day and What It Meant

Brumley brothers

Ancestors, Labor Day and what it meant to work hard for what you wanted to achieve. The three men are left to right - John, William Ralph, and Isaac Walter Brumley. 

In my journey to research my family tree, I have discovered that my relatives’ mostly men had careers that were mostly manual labor jobs. As you can see in the picture above that my ancestors didn’t mind getting their hands dirty. They worked long hours doing whatever it took to feed their families. I grew up with that kind of work ethic to do an honest day’s work for an honest day’s pay. Looking back on it now that I am retired, it was that work ethic that sustained me for thirty-one years.

My ancestors were hard-working people with many skills. These skills have been passed down from generation to generation. I am always interested in looking at the census pages and reading about what they did for a living. Many were farmers in my family which meant they worked from sun up to sun down to provide food for not only their own families but for people all over the United States.

There were other occupations that were of interest as well. I had relatives that were Coopers. What is a Cooper? A cooper is someone who makes wooden vessels, bound together with hoops and possessing flat ends or heads. Examples of Cooper's work would be barrels, buckets, tubs or butter churns.

Coopers working with barrels

My grandfather was a carpenter. He worked on various jobs around Kansas City, Kansas. He always took pride in this work. I had several relatives that made their living working for the various railroads around the United States. It was also a hard job to do because at times they would have to leave their families to work on an assignment far from home. Railroad work at least had a pension program to help out after they retired from the railroad.

I had a great uncle in Chicago who was in the Ice Manufacturing business for several years. My great-great-grandfather was a Ferryman before he signed up for the Civil War Draft. My father worked in the Steel Fabrication business that made steel structures such as gymnasiums that are still standing today.

No matter what job your ancestor had they made sure that they passed down their skills to their children. Some of their children carried on the same job skills but many others sought out other careers. It is these job skills that have shaped our America today. We owe these skilled workers a thank you for all that they do for us every day of the week.

In the United States, it is a public holiday celebrated on the first Monday in September. It is in honor of the American labor movement and celebrates the workers who have made this country strong and prosperous, and for the well-being of the country. As the trade unions and labor movements grew in the 19th Century unionists wanted to create a day of celebration for the laborers in the United States. Labor Day became an official Federal holiday in 1894.

I have started up my Brumley Branches Genealogy blog again and have updated some of my favorite posts. Please feel free to share this post with family and friends. If you have questions or wish to add any new information please email me. 

Thank you.

Tuesday, August 21, 2018

William Brumley - My Great-Great Uncle

Brumley Branches William Brumley

William Brumley my great-great uncle, known to most people as Bill. He was born on March 11, 1847, in a small town called Richland in Gasconade County, Missouri. He was the first child born to Willis Brumley and Mary (Polly) Johns. His other siblings were; Nancy Ann, Amanda Elizabeth, and John Brumley. His half siblings were by Nancy J Vaughan-Loughery-Lewis and Willis; Alice Florence and Isaac Walter Brumley. 

At the age of twenty-five, he married Mary E Williams on October 24, 1872, in Maries County, Missouri. In the Missouri Census of 1880, it has William living with R B Williams his mother-in-law and it lists Mary as dead. When my mother and I visited two newly found relatives in southern Missouri in the 1980's they told us that his wife and two children were involved in a house fire that killed her and two children. We could never prove that this took place but we know she is buried in Kenner Cemetery in Hayden, Maries, Missouri. I don't know if the children were buried with her or if they were in separate unmarked graves.

Bill picked up the pieces of his life after the loss of his first family and started to move forward once again. On July 6, 1881, in Maries County, Missouri he married his second wife, Mrs. Ellen Illinois Bell Lenox Blackwell. They had one daughter, America Layna, born December 3, 1882. 

My mother and I heard many stories about Bill. One, in particular, was the time he had too much to drink and relied on his faithful horse to see to it he made it home all in one piece. He was known to be a character when he drank too much but that is the fun part of learning about your relatives doing family genealogy.

He and his wife remained in the Dry Creek area of Maries County until the time of his death. Bill died on May 7, 1917, of Chronic Intestinal Nephritis at the age of seventy years old. 

He was buried in the Kenner Cemetery in Hayden, Missouri with his first wife Mary and his father Willis Brumley. My mother, Nancy Gertrude Brumley, myself and two other cousins walked this cemetery in mid-1980. We have at least eleven members of the family tree in this cemetery. Some of the tombstones are very old and you can hardly read what was engraved, others have nothing but white stones indicating a grave. 

I have started up my Brumley Branches Genealogy blog again and have updated some of my favorite posts. Please feel free to share this post with family and friends. If you have questions or wish to add any new information please email me. 

Thank you.

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Nancy Elizabeth Baugh - Strong Woman

Brumley Branches - Nancy Elizabeth Baugh Cox
Nancy E Baugh Cox and Bessie and Eva
Nancy Elizabeth Baugh was my great-great-grandmother and was proven to be a strong woman all of her life.  Nancy was born to John Henry Baugh and Sarah Elizabeth Higgenbotham in January 1828 in North Carolina. Her known siblings are Mary Ann 1819, John C 1825 and Samuel Valentine Baugh 1833.

It is not known when her family began to move westward to settle in the Lincoln County, Missouri area but it was before 1846. She meant her future husband Ralph H C Cox when she was eighteen years old and they were married on December 15, 1846, in St. Charles County, Missouri.

They started their family in 1848 when Sarah Elizabeth was born. Siblings that followed were; Thomas Henry, Sophia Jane, Jesse, Mary Ellen, James William, Ralph Henry, Anna Perlina and Nancy Katherine Cox (my great-grandmother).

They lived in Bedford, Lincoln, Missouri from 1848 until sometime between 1870 and 1880. The 1880 Missouri Census shows them residing in Miller, Maries, Missouri.

In 1896 their son James William Cox married Nancy Clementine Laney. They had two girls before 1900, Nancy Elizabeth "Bessie" and Sarah Evaline Cox. On October 26, 1896, at the young age of 29 Clementine "Tina" died of brain fever. A horrible and tragic death. This left James with two very small children to raise by himself. Nancy and Ralph took on the challenge of helping James raise his two small girls so James could keep on working.

The 1900 Census showed that Nancy and Ralph were still living in Miller. On July 16, 1907, Ralph at the age of eighty-five died and they were living in Dixon, Pulaski County, Missouri. Nancy was 79 years old and now a widow. She never remarried. 

In the 1910 Census, it shows she was eighty-two living in Pulaski County with the girls now 13 and 15. Sometime between the 1910 and 1920 Census, she was living with James as she was ninety-two years old in Baxter Springs, Cherokee, Kansas. James was taking care of her now because she had helped raise his girls. 

Nancy Elizabeth Baugh Cox died sometime in 1920 and is buried in Galena, Cherokee, Kansas next to her son James William Cox. She outlived most of her family and was a giving mother who always knew the most important thing to her was her family.

Headstone for Nancy Elizabeth Baugh Cox

Several years ago I corresponded with a daughter of one of the girls in the above picture. She said her mother shared countless stories of the dedication Nancy showed her family. I hope somehow all of the relatives got some of her DNA because she was a remarkably strong woman.

I have started up my Brumley Branches Genealogy blog again and have updated some of my favorite posts. Please feel free to share this post with family and friends. If you have questions or wish to add any new information please email me. 

Thank you.


Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Nancy Katherine Cox

Brumley Branches Nancy Katherine Cox

Nancy Katherine Cox Brumley was my great-grandmother. She was born in September 1870 in Bedford, Lincoln, Missouri.  She went by Katie most of the time. Her parents were Ralph H C Cox and Nancy Elizabeth Baugh. She was the last child out of nine children born to this family; Sarah Elizabeth, Thomas Henry, Sophia Jane, Jessie M, Mary Ellen, James William, Ralph H, and Annie Perlina.

The Missouri 1880 Census says, her family had moved to Maries County, Missouri. Katie was twenty-four years old when on January 13, 1895, she married my great-grandfather, Isaac Walter Brumley also of Maries County. On the marriage license record, it states that Willis Brumley had to give consent for Isaac Walter to marry because he was underage at the time.

They started their family by the birth of my grandfather, John Leo Brumley in 1895 and then five other siblings came afterward; William Ralph, Thomas Clinton, Nancy Beatrice (Bea), Henry Elmer Raymond and Walter Willis Brumley. 

Over the years the family resided in Maries, Osage, and Pulaski Counties in Missouri. Walter worked odd jobs and finally was able to get a position working for the railroad.

Katie became ill either in 1912 or before and whatever her symptoms they were bad enough that someone had to admit her into the hospital. The informant on the certificate doesn’t know some of the basic information. So the person who admitted Katie was probably not a relative or Walter. She was diagnosed with Pellagra, a horrible disease back in the day. Pellagra is caused by a lack of Niacin or Vitamin B-3 and has symptoms of dementia, diarrhea, and dermatitis, and if left untreated can lead to death.

She entered the Missouri State Hospital #3 on July 9, 1912It is unclear why Walter didn’t admit her to the hospital unless he was out of town working on the railroad. Most of the information was unknown. She was there one month and eighteen days and died on August 28, 1912, at the age of forty-two years old. 

The mystery surrounding her death has been a long-standing question for years as my mother and I have looked for her gravesite with no luck. Two unknown relatives that we discovered in the early 1980's did not even want to discuss it with us as we were gathering genealogy information. All they told us was where she was at, at the time of her death. Mental illness was not talked about in the last century as it is today. People did not want other people to know they had someone in their family with mental illness. My mother and I had to convince our two cousins, Effie and Edna that it was alright to talk about this with us. So even back in the 1980’s, it was still a taboo subject with the elderly relatives living in the Ozark area.  

At the bottom of the death certificate, it says place of burial was Dixon, Pulaski, Missouri. Relatives have stated that she was buried in Fairview Cemetery near Laquey and Hanna, Missouri I have no evidence that she is buried in this cemetery. There is a cemetery at the State Hospital but very few records of who is buried on the hospital grounds. My mother, Nancy Gertrude Brumley Weik was unable to find her grave several years ago when she traveled with her sister and brothers to locate her burial place. So it remains a mystery for now. My aunt, Shirley Ann Brumley Stevens also tried to locate her remains with no luck. 

I have started up my blog again and would appreciate any feedback from family or friends. Also, if there is anyone out there who can share more information about Nancy Katherine (Katie) Cox Brumley I would love to hear from you.

Thank you.


Friday, August 3, 2018

John Leo Brumley - The Carpenter

John Leo Brumley

John Leo Brumley the carpenter was my grandfather.  He was a hardworking man that provided for his family in the toughest of times. He grew up in tough times so he was well prepared for what was to come in his life.

He was born on November 26, 1895, in Dixon, Pulaski, Missouri. He was the first son born to Isaac Walter Brumley and Katherine (Katie) Cox. His other siblings were William Ralph, Thomas Clinton, Nancy Beatrice, Henry Elmer and Walter Willis Brumley.

They lived in 
Vienna, Maries, Missouri in 1897 when his brother William Ralph was born. In 1899 when Thomas Clinton was born they were in Osage County. Nancy Beatrice 1901 and Henry Elmer Raymond 1907 were also born in the same county. They were living in Pulaski County, Missouri when Walter Willis was born in 1908.

John was only sixteen years old, when his mother, Katherine Cox Brumley died of Pellagra in 1912. This left his father, Isaac Walter with five children to take care of and raise. John, William, and Thomas were old enough to seek employment to help the family’s finances. Nancy also decided to take out on her own as well, but Henry and Walter were left with other families so their father could go to work with the railroad to earn a living.

Camp Laredo, Texas

He enlisted on July 1, 1915, in the 2nd Regiment Company K, Missouri National Guard. He was stationed at Camp Laredo, Texas on the Mexican border when he was injured in a non-military accident. He was patrolling the Mexican Border in Texas when a spear cactus pierced him in the right leg just below his knee. He had to have surgery to take care of the infection and was discharged because of his disability after serving only eighteen days.  He mustered out of service on January 13, 1917, because of the non-military accident.

John was living with his father Walter in Baxter Springs, Kansas when WW I broke out and he had to register with the local Draft Board. He gave the information that he had been a Private First Class in the Infantry and had served 3 years prior to WWI.

John Leo Brumley WWI Enrollment

In the 1920 Census, my grandfather was living with his brother William in Springfield, Greene, Missouri and working as a common laborer. It was at this time that he meant my grandmother, Nellie Opal Sells of Springfield. Their courtship was a whirlwind and on March 20, 1920, they were married in Kansas City, Wyandotte, Kansas.

As their life began so did their family when my mother, Nancy Gertrude Brumley was born, and then Leo, John, Jr., Gerald and Shirley Ann Brumley was born.

My grandfather was a union carpenter by trade and worked on several projects in Kansas City, Wyandotte, Kansas. The Great Depression of the 1930's came along work drastically slowed down and eventually no jobs were available. My mother told me the stories how he would have to go downtown and stand in "the bread line" for any food he could get for his family.

My mother and her siblings grew up in various neighborhoods in Kansas City, Kansas, and my grandparents lived the remainder of their lives there.
My mother told me stories about the Strawberry Hill community where people came from Croatia, Ireland, Germany and many other countries to live and thrive. They all got along because they all had the common thread of living and working in the United States to better themselves and their families.

John once again had to enlist in another war, this time it was WWII. He did not serve in that war because of his age and his disabilities from working as a carpenter. 

I enjoyed visiting them every summer and to hear the stories they had to tell of when they were young and living in Kansas City, Kansas. They once had a house with a big porch along with a porch swing, we would sit and swing on hot summer days watching the people go by and talking about the place they called home.

He worked as long as he could in odd carpentry jobs around the city. He was prone to getting blood poisoning if he was hurt on the job. Finally, he had to give up carpentry altogether.

My grandmother, Nellie Opal Sells Brumley died in 1965 and John lived in the city until his health began to fail. He then moved to Olathe, Johnson, Kansas to a nursing home, where he could be closer to his children that were caring for him.  John Leo Brumley died May 29, 1976, at the age of eighty years old. They are both buried at Highland Cemetery in Kansas City, Kansas.

I have started my blog up again and have updates on my favorite posts. If you enjoyed reading this please pass this along to family and friends.

Thank you.

Monday, July 30, 2018

Willis Brumley - His Life and Times

Iowa Farm

Willis Brumley - His Life and Times, he had four wives and six children and lived a life of questions. I have been on his trail since the early 1980's as my mother, Nancy Gertrude Brumley Weik and I tried to put the pieces of his life together. We have had some success but now it is just me trying to put this jigsaw puzzle together. The information I have gathered just leads to more questions than answers. I am going to share and update what I have in hopes that someone will read this and contact me that knows anything about Willis Brumley.

Willis is my great-great-grandfather he was born about 1824 in Missouri. At this writing, I think his parents were James Brumley and Eleanor "Nellie" Crismon, but I have no concrete evidence that connects him to James. 

Willis was married to his first wife, Mary "Polly" Johns February 25, 1844, in Gasconade County, Missouri. They had four children together, William "Bill" 1847, Nancy Ann "Aunt Coon" 1850, Amanda Elizabeth "Mandy" 1855 and John Brumley 1860. It is not clear if Polly died after giving birth to her last child John or if it was a later date. I have been unable to find her gravesite or any of her relatives over the years. So that is my first question mark on Willis. I found two of Willis' grandchildren that were children of his son John Brumley, Effie and Edna. They provided some information about what they knew of his life but there were still more questions. 

I do know in July of 1863 in Saint Louis he registered for the Civil War and it stated that he was a widower with children and living in Mount Sterling, Gasconade, Missouri. I have been unable to find if he actually served in the Civil War. He either had too many obligations at the time or could find no one to take care of his children. Polly Johns Brumley must have died sometime after 1860.

On June 12, 1864, he married for the second time to Sarah Lane/Jane Shockley in Gasconade County. I have discovered no children born to this union. I have no more information on her except the marriage record. Another question mark for Willis.

Willis married for the third time to Nancy J Vaughn-Lowery/Loughry-Lewis/Louis on September 26, 1868, in Osage County, Missouri. Willis and Nancy had two children, Alice Florence 1869 and my great-grandfather, Isaac Walter Brumley in 1875. This is perplexing because of the seven-year gap between siblings. Nancy had other children from her prior two marriages, Edward, Martha and Charlesann "Annie" Loughry and Julia E Lewis/Louis. My mother and I had thought for years that Delalin Foster Harris was my great-grandfather's mother. I have discovered in the U.S. Social Security Applications and Claims Index 1936-2007 that he said his mother's name was Lowery. Still, I have questions about who his mother really was Nancy or Delalin.

I think Willis was working on the railroad when they traveled to Omaha, Douglas, Nebraska and where Isaac Walter was born. I don't know what happened to Nancy if she died or they divorced or if she remained in Nebraska. I have not found a gravesite for Nancy or know of any marriages after Willis.

This is where it really gets tricky. Willis married for the fourth time to Delalin Foster Harris on February 22, 1874, in Osage County, Missouri.  

It states on Isaac Walter's Death Certificate that he was born in 1875 but that he married Delalin in 1874. Walter's third wife is the one who filled out the information at the time of his death so she may not have known the correct year.

I have determined that Willis must have died sometime around 1899 in Maries County, Missouri and is buried in Kenner Cemetery. There is no information about dates on his headstone. I do not find him on any census after 1900. I have never found a picture of him and to this date, no relatives have any pictures of him.

Willis Brumley Kenner Cemetery

I have started my blog back up again with updated information. If you have any information on Willis Brumley please contact me through this blog. If you like this blog please spread the word 

Thank you.

Friday, July 20, 2018

Sarah Frances Douglas

Sarah Frances Douglas

Sarah Frances Douglas was my great-great-grandmother. She went by Sallie most of the time. She was the daughter of William and Johannah Douglas born in Grant County, Kentucky in 1853. I know that she had at least one brother, William Douglas born in 1849 also in Kentucky, but to this date, I have found no other siblings.

The 1860 Census shows that she was 7 years old living with her family in Grant County, Kentucky. Ten years later in 1870, she was living with the Lamon family in Williamstown, Lewis, Missouri. It is not clear if she was related to this family or not, she was attending school in Lewis County.

On January 26, 1873, in Clark County, Missouri she married Simon Nichols, my great-great-grandfather. Sallie was wife number three for Simon.

On August 14, 1873, in Williamstown, they had her first child, Lorena "Rennie", in 1876, they had their second daughter Lilly F, and 1878 Gertrude Wilburn (my great-grandmother) was born. In 1880, they were living in Union, Missouri and that is where Addie was born and died as an infant.  My mother told me that her mother Gertrude was deeply saddened over Addie's death and it bothered her for years. It is not known what Addie died from but she is also buried in the Nichols Family Graveyard. In 1882 Robert Lee was born and in June 1884. Sallie and Simon's last child was born June 7, 1884, Simon Leonard Nichols. The sad fact was that Simon died on May 26, 1884, in Williamstown without even knowing his son that carried on his name. Simon Nichols was buried in the Nichols Family Graveyard on his property at the time in Williamstown, Lewis, Missouri.

Sallie was now left with many children to raise by herself as well as taking care of the farm property they lived on. She married a second time to Henrich (Henry) Miller on April 9, 1888, in Clark County, Missouri. She and Henry had a son, William Henry Miller born on January 22, 1890. 

Sarah Frances Douglas Nichols Miller died of Heart Disease in Jackson County, Missouri on October 15, 1896, she was only forty-three years old. It is not known where she is buried, but I will update this post if I discover any more information on her burial.

I have started up my blog again to add new information on various relatives that I have discovered over the last year or so. If you like this post please spread the word to other relatives and friends. 

Thank you and enjoy the post.

Saturday, July 14, 2018

Gertrude Wilburn Nichols

Gertrude Wilburn Nichols

Gertrude Wilburn Nichols was my great-grandmother. She was born to Simon Nichols and Sarah Frances Douglas in Union, Clark, Missouri on May 17, 1878. 
Her siblings by Sarah were Lorena R, Lilly F, Addie, Robert Lee and Simon Leonard Sells.

She also had half-brothers and half-sisters because her father had been married before to Mary Frances Noel. They were William Ruben, John Clayton, Nancy, Mary A, Alvira Ellen and Emma E Nichols.

Gertrude lost her little sister Addie when she was about 3 years old of some unknown illness at that time they were living in Union, Clark, Missouri.

At the time of her father’s death, she was living in Williamstown, Lewis, Missouri. By 1884 the family was living in Kahoka Clark County and at the age of 16 years old, she married my great-grandfather Columbus Sells of the same county on November 15, 1894. 

Gertrude and Columbus started their family by having a son, John Wesley Sells on February 10, 1896, in Kahoka. The family had moved once again to Farmington, Iowa when my grandmother, Nellie Opal was born in 1900. They had their last child, Sylvia Pearl Sells in Ft. Madison, Lee, Iowa on February 28, 1902.

UPDATE: Since I last published this post I have learned more information about Gertrude and Columbus's family. It was thought that John Wesley Sells, Jr., was the first son born to their family but it was Wilburn Sells. He was born in 1893 and died at the age of six years old on August 4, 1899, in Kahoka, Clark, Missouri. His death notice was published in the Kahoka Gazette-Herald and the Kahoka Courier Aug. 11, 1899. The cause of death was not known. He was buried in the Chambersburg Cemetery in Chambersburg, Missouri. There was also the following poem for him in the newspaper death notice;

A precious one from us has gone
A voice we loved is stilled;
A place is vacant in our home,
Which never can be filled

God in his wisdom has recalled
The bloom his love has given
And though the body slumbers here
The soul is safe in Heaven.”

For years my mother and I have wondered what Gertrude's middle name was, it was always just a "W" for the middle initial. Since I have learned about her young son's passing and his name, I now know that it stood for Wilburn.
On the 1910 Missouri Census Columbus and Gertrude and their family were living in Union, Laclede, Missouri. They moved again sometime between 1910 and 1920 to Springfield, Greene, Missouri. Gertrude developed pneumonia and died on November 6, 1919, she was only forty-one years old and was buried in Springfield. Gertrude never had a proper headstone so my aunt, Shirley Ann Brumley Stevens purchased one for her gravesite in Springfield, Green, Missouri, and had the grave properly marked.

As I have written about before, Gertrude and her family were 7th Day Adventist. The early Adventist Church emerged from a climate of religious revival in the Northeastern United States. Camp meetings, such as the Millerite gathering, were a hallmark of the Second Great Awakening. Gertrude continued her faith into her own marriage to Columbus and brought the children up as 7th Day Adventist.

I have started up my blog again and I am posting my favorites with the updates I have learned since the last one. If you enjoyed this blog please share with family and friends. 

Thank you.


Thursday, July 12, 2018

Nellie Opal Sells

Nellie Opal Sells

Nellie Opal Sells was my maternal grandmother. She was born August 11, 1900, to Columbus Sells and Gertrude Wilburn Nichols, Farmington, Van Buren, Iowa. She had two other siblings, John Wesley, and Sylvia Pearl Sells.

By the time Nellie was ten years old the family had moved to Union, Laclede, Missouri and nine years later the family had settled in Springfield, Greene, Missouri. In the fall of 1919 Nellie's mother became ill with pneumonia and died on November 6, 1919, my grandmother was a young woman of only nineteen years old.

My grandmother's mother Gertrude Wilburn was a member of Seventh-Day Adventist Church and raised her family in the faith. There would be times in Springfield, Missouri that they would hold tent revival meetings that would sometimes last up to a week. It was at one of these tent meetings that Nellie attended that she caught the eye of a bystander, John Leo Brumley. My grandmother spoke many times about how it was love at first sight for each of them. They had a whirlwind romance and March 13, 1920, she and John were married in Kansas City, Wyandotte, Kansas.

They began building their family on December 6, 1920, with the birth of a daughter, Nancy Gertrude Brumley, my mother. They established their residency in Kansas City, Kansas and added to their family with Leo Isaac, John Junior, Gerald Raymond, and Shirley Ann Brumley. 
My grandfather had many jobs over the years to provide for his family. He was a carpenter in most of the jobs he held in Kansas City. Times were tough during the Great Depression of the 30's and my mother told me of the stories of him and others standing many hours in the bread lines for any food to feed their families. 

My grandmother Brumley was my favorite grandmother, she was always happy no matter how bad things would look. There were many occasions we would sit together on her porch swing and just talk or laugh about anything and everything. Since my family lived in Illinois at the time I would look forward to visiting her each summer. She taught me how to cross-stitch one summer and I still love that hobby today. 

I was an 8th grader looking forward to graduation and my graduation present was going to be spending the summer by myself with my Grandmother Brumley. I could hardly wait for school to be over that year. One day my mother got a phone call that my grandmother was ill and could she come to Kansas to help out. I was worried and waited for my mother to call us back home and give us a word on how she was doing. My mother returned home and everyone thought she was getting better. I remember the phone call like it was yesterday as my mother came into my bedroom to tell me that my Grandmother Brumley had died of complications of her illness. I was devastated and I remember crying most of the night in bed. The person I had looked up to for so long was no longer alive. It was hard to accept but with my mother's help, I put her in my heart where I could never forget her. Nellie Opal Sells Brumley died on May 3, 1965, in Kansas City, Wyandotte, Kansas she was 65 years old. 

My mother went by herself to her mother's funeral while my dad stayed home and took care of me and my brothers. She was the first relative to die when I was a child, I didn't know what to expect but with the understanding of my mother, I got through it.  

John Brumley and Nellie Opal Sells
Nellie Opal and John Leo Brumley

I have started my blog back up again and I am selecting some of my favorites to post again. If you enjoyed reading this blog post please let your family and friends know about it and spread the word. 

Thank you.


Monday, July 9, 2018

Ruby Jemima Pultz Weik

Ruby Jemima Pultz Weik

Ruby Jemima Pultz Weik was my paternal grandmother and as I was growing up we called her Grammy Weik. She was born on September 14, 1889, in Woodburn, Clark, Iowa to Edward George Pultz and Kate Anna Smith. Ruby was their fifth child out of thirteen children. Ruby's brothers and sisters were George Alvah, Frank, Ina Grace, Carrie Rosalie, Edward Glenn, James Harold, Waunita Susan, Edna B, Lloyd Wilson, Williard Zee, Kenneth Leo and Wilma Jean Pultz.

She and some of her siblings were raised in Iowa until they moved to Kansas around 1899 to Bala, Riley, Kansas. The rest of her siblings were born in Kansas where they settled in and around the area for their childhood. 

Her father came to Kansas as a farmer with many mouths to feed. They all pitched in and did their share of the chores every day to keep the farm running smoothly. One by one the children left to find their own paths on the journey of life. My grandmother was no different and at the age of eighteen, she meant and fell in love with a young man that would become my grandfather, Otto Richard Weik. On February 20, 1908, at the Clay County, Kansas courthouse.

Ruby Jemima Pultz Wedding Announcement
Ruby and Otto Marriage

Otto lived in the nearby town of Leonardville, Riley, Kansas and it was there they made their home as he continued to farm the land. They soon started a family with seven children, Leo John, Edward Hugh, Don Charles, Lola Mae, Elsie Elizabeth, Ina Marie and Merle Otto Weik, my father.

Tragically sometime in the Spring of 1926, he was working around horses when one of them kicked him injuring him severely. On June 16, 1926, he died of his injuries. He was only forty-one years old. He was buried at the Sunset Cemetery in Manhattan, this would leave Ruby with seven children to raise as well as running a farm. She relied on the knowledge she had learned as a child on how to work as a family together to keep the farm producing food for themselves as well as income for the family. 

Weik Family Photo 1938
Weik Family 1938

My father Merle was only three years old when his father died and while his brothers and sisters along with Ruby worked out in the field they would put him in the wagon as they worked so they could keep an eye on him. They raised much of their own food. As the older boys grew older they began to leave home to pursue jobs other than farming. Once again, Ruby made it work until the children were grown and then it was time to move to the city.

Ruby never remarried and was devoted to her family. Between 1925 and 1930 she moved to Manhattan, Riley, Kansas. In 1940 the census shows she was living in Blue, Pottawatomie, Kansas just outside of Manhattan. She eventually went back to Manhattan to live out her life. 

I remember summers when I was a child that we traveled to Manhattan to visit her along with other relatives, she was always willing to tell us a story of how it was back then when she was a child. Her health started to fail and on June 3, 1973, she died at the age of eighty-three years old. She was buried at Sunset Cemetery next to her beloved husband Otto. 

My father was devoted to her as she had been to him during those years when he had no father. He told me that it was his older brothers that stepped up to guide him, especially his brother Edward. 

 I am starting my blog back up again and would enjoy hearing from any relatives that would have anything to add about Ruby Jemima Pultz Weik. If you enjoyed this post, I would be grateful if you would spread the word by emailing it to a friend. Thank you very much.