1859 - 1943 (84 years)
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||Mary Morton Taylor [1, 2] |
||19 Aug 1859
||Jordan, Green Co., WI
||01 Nov 1943
||West Plains, Howell Co., MO
Ravenden Springs, Randolph Co., AR
||Woods Chapel Cemetery, Greene Co., AR
- From: Allan Horrocks
A personal note: I can remember, quite clearly, Grandma Nelson living in a house that Grandfather and Grandmother Hendrick built on Haussler Road in Kelso, Washington. It was between our house and my grand-parents' house. I can remember, as a child--perhaps I was 8-9 years of age, her giving us kids cookies. She was nice to us and even allowed us into her house which was filled with good smells.
The following is the story Grandma Nelson told to Doris Lee Hendrick of her travels after her marriage to William Nelson:
"Your Grandfather had lived in and near Denver for about 9 years of his life and so we concluded that we would go west. His brother, John Nelson lived at Malta, Colorado so we thought we would go there first. We took the train at Lina, Illinois the third day of January 1880. Your Grandfather had ridden thousands of miles, of course, but I hadn't ridden a hundred miles. It was all new and wonderful to me and of course Will enjoyed explaining things to the little "greenie" he had married. We went through Galena, Illinois, Grants old home and that is a city I never forgot. My first sight of the Mississippi I never forgot. It was and is a grand sight. Savanah, Illinois was were I saw it first. We went up to Savanah then backed down and went through Moline and Rock Island and across the Mississippi at Davenport. All wonderful to me then. Then cut across southeastern Iowa and then northeastern Missouri. Then we came to Cameron Junction, Missouri. I've always remembered it as a lovely place and Will and I have many times talked of trying to find a farm back there. Such nice level black soil appealed to us. Then we crossed the Missouri at Leavenworth and on through Kansas. We saw such nice country, all building up so and so alive. The next station we stopped at was Lawrence, Kansas. A fine city, a college town and one that impressed you as being up to date and growing. A pleasant memory for all these years.
About the first building a new town put up seemed to be an Opera house, then a church (if they had enough cash left). Well we got into Colorado in the early morning, about where Cheyenne Wells is now. At First-View the train had to stop for a herd of antelope to cross the tracks - the first antelope that I had ever seen. And now rather than being snowy and winter it was lovely and sunshiney. We saw a man come out of his dugout and he was barefoot. Such nice black soil that I wanted to stay and live there, but-no, we had tickets for Leadville and to Leadville we were going. We got into Denver in the early evening and I was so dizzy from the altitude that I went right to bed. I was still dizzy in the morning.
Denver was home ground to Will. He hired a livery rig and we drove out about four miles west to see some friends from his Wisconsin home. Well, our train to Leadville was due at 9:00 that night and all our belongings were in the depot except what little we had with us. As we got ready to go, I noticed that Will got his revolver from the suitcase and put it into the right hand pocket of his overcoat, first seeing that it was loaded. Now that was before electric lights and really it was quite dark around the depot. Will had a hold of me with his left hand, but his right hand was free you see. There was quite a crowd there and they looked fierce to me but probably they were just country boys.
The train to Leadville was a narrow-guage train and the seats and aisle were very narrow. We hadn't gotten very far when the conductor pulled the bell cord and the train stopped and there were two men, just a little way from us that had no tickets. The conductor called for help and just put them off right on the mountain and in deep snow and no houses in sight. It couldn't be done now but it was then. I have thought of those two men so many times and wondered if they froze for they were thinly clothed and the mercury was probably around 40 below. Well pretty soon I had something else to worry about. There was a woman, perhaps 6 or 7 seats ahead of us who had a bottle of liquor that she was trying to get the men on the train to drink. I can see her yet, a woman probably 35, a bad woman, one of the kind they call a fancy. She had on a black and white checkered dress. I remember her passing her bottle from one man to the next. Of course she didn't come up as far as we were. Finally, she passed the bottle to a man across the aisle from her who wouldn't drink with her and she jerked out a pistol and pointed it at him and I could almost look in the barrel, for by this time she was pretty drunk herself. I was scared! That was my first acquaintance with the wild west and fancy women. I knew of that revolver in Will's pocket and was so afraid that he would get mixed up in the quarrel. But, just then the conductor came in and took the woman to another car. Of course he had to use force to get her to come. About 2:00 in the morning, two men tried to get on the train and it took lots of force to keep them off. They were at a little water station or something like that. At seven in the morning we came to the end of the line at a little place called Weston. Then we had to change to sleighs. I had never seen a house covered with tar paper before that but at Weston I saw plenty of them.
The sleighs were so large that a good many people could get in one of them. Of course, it was all new to me and wonderful. One of Will's old chums happened to be in our sleigh, a young man named Chan Smith. He and Will certainly visited for they hadn't seen each other for nearly two years. Now in the same sleigh was a woman about 25 years old with a little baby of perhaps 6 months. Both the woman and the baby were too thinly clothed for the intense cold. She had come from somewhere in New York state and was going to Leadville to see if she could locate her husband. Her money had given out and she was almost starved and nursing a baby. Smith took off his overcoat and gave it to her- a poor woman that he had never seen until that January morning. After he got to Leadville, he put her in a hotel and paid her expenses and spent three days locating her husband. At the end of those three days he began to hemmorage and had to get down lower. He stopped at brother John's and told Will about it. I have always thought of him as a true hero. Well the horses began to move and so did our sleigh and we soon on our way again. I have stopped to tell the story of Chan Smith because I think he was wonderful. The road, at that time, was narrow and all the ore was freighted from the smelters in Malta (three miles from Leadville). Large sleighs loaded with ingots of smelted ore going down to the mints at Denver and drawn by 6 and 8 horses (or mules). All the teams wore bells and there were places made every so often in the side of the mountain where the loads could stop while the loads with people went by. This sleigh business went on for a number of hours and we took the stage at Fairplay. Of course there was someone on the stage to tell us, "This is where the stage was held up". That would make me shiver and every few weeks the stage was held up and the passengers robbed, that part was really true. It was about five o'clock when we reached Will's brothers and I was dizzy. I minded the altitude of 10,000 ft, but Will didn't.
Will's brother John lived three miles west of Leadville, in a little village called Malta. John was six years older than Will. A man 6'3" tall and an old soldier, so straight as straight can possibly be, His wife, Minnie, was two years younger than me, so she was 18. They had a little year old girl. Minnie's adopted sister and her husband were there, also Will and Jennie Joseph and Minnie's two brothers, John and Alfred, John was 24 and Al was 20. So that was our happy family, 8 grownups and a baby. Of course the Leadville stage had left our trunk right out in front and soon Will got out his violin and the two Ward boys each had a musical instrument, one a bass viola and the other a violin and they entertained us until a late bedtime. John owned the house next door - a low log building and it was decided to fix that up for us. Let me describe it; the people used to take refuge in it against Indian attacks. There was only 2 or 4 lighted windows and the roof was almost level. There was a few holes to shoot out of in the walls. It was about 18' by 20' and faced the main road and also faced California Gulch, where the first gold was taken out in the vicinity of Leadville. When Will remodeled the house he had a lovely high roof and a nice door and two tall windows. He put over $100 into it. We stayed at brother John's for about 5 weeks and then moved into this made over house of ours.
Will found a carpenter job 4 miles from Malta and had to walk to and from work. He had to be at work at 7:00 so we got up at 4:00 and I got breakfast and put-up his lunch and he left at 6:00. They worked until 6:00PM so Will got home for a 7:00PM supper all for $4 a day. When Will got through with that job of house building, he began to think of something else to do, so he and John and Al Ward built Evergreen Lakes over on the slopes of Mount Massive. So Will built me my second home. Will took up a 20 acre placer claim. The logs in this home were 40ft long and straight as matches, pine of course. The house was divided into two rooms."
- From: Jim Nelson
Saw your post concerning Mary Morton Taylor. My father, James, was the youngest son of Mary and Will. Mary and Will are both buried in Woods Chapel Cemetery, Paragould, AR. Will died in 1934 and Mary in 1943. Grandmother Nelson was living in a cabin my dad built for her on our place in Ravenden, AR when she died. She actually died in the hospital in West Plains, MO where she had been taken after falling and breaking her hip. She died of pneumonia. I have letters from her brother, Lee Taylor, who was with her when she died. The letters were written to his niece, Grace Nelson who was in New York at the time. I was five when she died and remember her well.
Jim Nelson 
||29 Nov 2014 |
||Lemuel Taylor, b. 26 Mar 1823, Aurelius, Cayuga Co., NY , d. 1 Feb 1889, Jordan, Green Co., WI (Age 65 years) |
||Mary Ellen Stevens |
||28 Nov 1858
||Jordan, Green Co., WI
||Group Sheet | Family Chart
||William Henry Nelson, b. 14 Jul 1849, PA , d. 11 Apr 1933, Randolph Co., AR (Age 83 years) |
||7 Dec 1879
||Wayne, Lafayette Co., WI
|+||1. William Irvine Nelson, b. 13 Oct 1880, Leadville, Lake Co., CO , d. 1933 (Age 52 years)|
|+||2. Mary Irene Nelson, b. 17 Oct 1881, Jordan, Green Co., WI , d. 28 Dec 1918 (Age 37 years)|
| ||3. Lee Alfred Nelson, b. 21 Apr 1883, Jordan, Green Co., WI , d. 1962 (Age 78 years)|
|+||4. Luella Laurene Nelson, b. 24 Aug 1884, Jordan, Green Co., WI , d. 1986 (Age 101 years)|
|+||5. Clara Viola Nelson, b. 31 Oct 1886, Cadiz Twp., Green Co., WI , d. 1 Dec 1966, Stayton, Marion Co., OR (Age 80 years)|
|+||6. Joseph Bernard Nelson, b. 7 Feb 1889, Cadiz Twp., Green Co., WI , d. 2 Sep 1935, Kelso, Cowlitz Co., WA (Age 46 years)|
| ||7. Eleanor Genevieve Nelson, b. 7 Sep 1891, Cadiz Twp., Green Co., WI , d. 8 Dec 1979 (Age 88 years)|
| ||8. Grace Evangaline Nelson, b. 16 Apr 1895, Cadiz Twp., Green Co., WI , d. 20 Oct 1986 (Age 91 years)|
| ||9. Ruth Evelyn Nelson, b. 27 Mar 1899, Weota, Green, WI |
|+||10. Esther Elizabeth Nelson, b. 10 Apr 1902, Ladue, St. Louis Co., MO |
| ||11. James Arthur Nelson, b. 16 Apr 1905, Montrose, Henry Co., MO , d. 1973, Charleston, Mississippi Co., MO (Age 67 years)|
||Group Sheet | Family Chart