Monday, May 17, 2010

Nathanial Dexter, Carpenter, Winthrop ME

Kennebunk ME town hall.

Nathaniel Dexter was born in Kennebunk,York, ME on 14 May 1771 to Isaac and Keziah (Wing) Dexter.  By the 1810 census he was 39 years old, living  in Fairfax, in Kennebec County ME and had a family as listed on the census:

Free White Males Under 10:        3
Free White Males 26 to 44:         1
Free White Females Under 10:    3
Free White Females 10 to 15:     1
Free White Females 26 to 44:     1
Number of Household Members Under 16:     7
Number of Household Members Over 25:       2
Number of Household Members:                   9

Nathaniel married Chloe Washburn, who was born 28 June 1777 in Wayne, ME to Japheth (Revolutionary War Patriot and of the line Ephraim4, Joseph3, John2, John1 of Plymouth, Mass) and Priscella (Coombs) Washburn.  They were married 12 July 1796 in Winthrop ME. (Birth record taken from Town and Vital Records of Wayne, ME, 1800-1891 from FHL microfilm #0012302; marriage record from Town and Vital Records of Winthrop, ME 1772-1890, from FHL microfilm #0012299.)  She was also a descendant of Francis Cook, James Chilton and Mary (Chilton) WInslow, passengers on the Mayflower in 1620 (Ebenezer Washburn, His Ancestors and Descendants by George T Washburn, p.51, 53-55, 105-06).  More on this connection later.

Post Card of Winthrop ME in late 1800s.

Chloe died 9 March 1826 in Dover, Piscataquis, ME. (I've yet to find the proof for this date) and Nathaniel remarried - marrying his son, Lotan's mother-in-law, Annie (Bragg) Fish who was widowed in 1814 when her husband Bolton Fish was killed in action - following is his pension report:

Name:      Bolton Fish
Rank:     Sergeant
County:     Kennebeck CO.
Annual Allowance:     66 00
Sums received:     330 00
Description of service:     9th regiment infantry
Time of decease:     25 Jul 1814
Names of the heirs:     Meribah, Ruby, Hiram, Ephraim, David and Nathaniel Fish
When placed on the pension roll:     23 Nov 1817
Commencement of pension:     17 Feb 1815
Ending of pension:     17 Feb 1820

Nathaniel died after Aug 1850 (the1850 Census shows him living in Dover Piscataquis ME with wife Annie in Aug 1850).

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Dexters from Maine - Kennebec County

Lotan Dexter was born 30 Jan 1801 in Albion, Kennebec, Maine.  He married Ruby Fish in Kennebec Maine abt 1825-6 and in 1853, with their five children moved westward to Illinois.  They settled at Toulon IL in 1854 with brother-in-law, Oran Maxfield, moved to Goshen in 1855, and established his permanent home at Toulon in 1856.

Children were Bethana, born in 1827 and settling in Newton KS; Walter Marshall who moved to Idaho in the 1880s; George F, who settled in Goshen; Henry, who served in the Thirty-seventh Illinois Infantry, was wounded at Pea Ridge, and died from those wounds in 1873; and James W, who settled in Galva.

Ruby Fish was born 2 Nov 1891 in Dover, Piscataquis, ME (a large county in North Central Maine) to Bolton and Annie Bragg Fish.  Bolton Fish was a Revolutionary War Patriot and is listed in the United States Senate. Report from the Secretary of War, in Obedience to Resolutions of the Senate of the 5th and 30th of June, 1834, and the 3d of March, 1835, In Relation to the Pension Establishment of the United States. [Maine Section]. Washington, D.C.: Duff Green, 1835.  He was a Sergeant in the 9th Regiment Infantry in Kennebec Co ME and died 25 July 1814.  His heirs were listed as: Meribah, Ruby, Hiram, Ephraim, David and Nathaniel Fish.  Bolton's widow, Annie Bragg Fish, remarried - to Lotan's widowed father, Nathaniel Dexter.  They had both passed away before the Lotan Dexter family moved westward to Illinois.

 Stark County Illinois.

The Lotan Dexters (along with the Maxfields) drove from "Dover Piscataquis, Me. Sept. 17, 1835 to Bangor twenty eight miles; Sept. 18th drove eighteen miles to Newburg; Sept. 19th twenty nine miles to China; Sept. 22nd twenty six miles to Augusta bridge" and so, mile after mile, from Maine to Toulon, Illinois, where they were pioneers in Stark County.
(Nebraska & Midwest Genealogical Record,  Published by the Nebraska Genealogical Society,January 1923 through October 1944; vol 7, pg 66)

Monday, May 10, 2010

Walter Marshall Dexter, Pioneer Extraordinaire

Mary Dexter's father was Walter Marshall Dexter, born 19 Dec 1831 in Maine to Lotan Dexter and Ruby Fish.  He moved with them to Illinois in the mid 1850s and eventually moved on to Idaho in the late 1880s to homestead.  He died in Valley County, Idaho in 1913 and is buried in the same cemetery as his two children who drowned in the Payette River in 1890 - Crown Point Cemetery.

From The History of Henry County, Illinois: Its Tax-Payers and Voters, by H F Kett & Co, 1877  - pg 289 -  Walter M Dexter -
"Farmer Sec. 32; P.O. Ulah; born in Piscataquis Co. Maine, Dec 19, 1831; Rep;Bapt; owns 160 acres land, value $9,600; lived in Maine about twenty- three years, then went to California and was there six years; came to Stark Co. this State and lived there twelve years; came to this county in 1874; has held office of School Director in Stark Co; holds same office here: married Miss Alida Jane Bennett, Nov 24 1862; she was born Pennsyvania and brought up in Stark Co. Ill; they have four children, one boy and three girls."

Documents and biography pertaining to the settlement and progress of Stark County, Illinois : containing an authentic summary   Author: Leeson, M. A. Date of Publication: 1887   Subjects: Stark County (Ill.) -- History., Stark County (Ill.) -- Biography., Stark County (Ill.)...  pg 93 Chapter IV. Marriage record 1831-1866 -  lists the marriage of Walter M Dexter and Alida Jane Bennett as 24 Oct 1861.

Alida Jane Bennett was born 20 March 1835 in Milan, Cayuga, New York to Jeremiah Bennett and Sarah Winne.  She died 4 March 1924 in Valley County Idaho and is buried beside her husband, Walter M Dexter and her children, Lotan and Kezzia, in Crown Point Cemetery.  (Bureau of Health Policy and Vital Statistics. Idaho Death Index, 1911-51. Boise, ID, USA: Idaho Department of Health and Welfare certificate #045530 - This database is an index to the death records for the U.S. state of Idaho for the years 1911-1951. In addition to providing the name of the deceased, the index provides the date and place of death, the deceased's birth date, and their death certificate number.)

Friday, May 7, 2010

The Beginning - - or is it the End????

Mary Winnie Dexter was born 13 March 1877 in Toulon, Stark Co, Illinois to Walter Marshall and Alida Jane (Bennett) Dexter.  The picture at left shows Mary "Winnie" - in front - with her parents, brother Lotan and sisters Phalla, Kezzia, and Marcia.

Marcia, the oldest daughter, married James Wright in 1887 and chose to remain in Illinois when the family decided to move to Idaho and homestead.  Lotan, the oldest in the family, was married also in 1887 to Viola Pratt, but they decided to venture to the Idaho Territory (on November 5, 1889, the citizens of Idaho Territory ratified the constitution by a vote of 12,398 to 1,773 and it became a state on 3 July, 1890) and try their luck at homesteading also.  The Dexters came to Idaho in 1889, to what is now Valley County.  But tragedy was to soon strike the family - on 27 July 1890, just days after the state was formed, the family was camped beside the Payette River and 13 year old Kezzia decided to go down to the river to get a bucket of water.  As she put the bucket in, the force of the stream pulled her and she was swept away down the river.  Lotan, her brother, jumped in to save her but was unsuccessful.  Both drowned that day and were buried in a cemetery that now overlooks the Cascade Reservoir - Crown Point Cemetery. 

In 1902, Walter M and Mary W Dexter filed homestead claims with the Bureau of Land Management. 

This was written by Wesley W. Craig      January 1999
There is a fascinating story of how our Logues from Pennsylvania got to Valley County, Idaho. To show how historical events could have unforeseen circumstances for the Logue family, I need to mention the discovery of gold in the Yukon Territory of northwestern Canada in 1896. News of this event didn’t reach the United States until 1897. This brought a stampede of prospectors from around the world in 1897-98. Among those who were excited by this event was Ezra E. Logue (b. 1874 at First Fork, Cameron County, Pennsylvania), a second-cousin to my great grand-father, George Alexander Logue. Ezra is reported to have made two trips to the Klondike in search of gold along with his cousin, Irivin Logue of Huntley, Cameron County. Enroute to the gold field he went over the Chilkoot Pass where several hours earlier an avalanche had occurred, burying many of prospectors. He helped dig out survivors (many had died) from the ice and snow, then proceeded on to the Klondike. (For a fascinating description of the events surrounding this gold-strike read James Michner’s book, Alaska).

Following his second trip to the Klondike gold fields Ezra rafted and boated down the Yukon River in Alaska to a new gold-strike at Nome, Alaska. He then decided to return to Pennsylvania through the newly discovered gold mining area in central Idaho (Idaho County). He is reported to have taken up a timber and homestead claim near Garden Valley, Idaho (close to Long Valley, Idaho). His health not being good he returned to Cameron County, Pa. to spend the winter, with the intention of returning to Idaho in the spring. Unfortunately, he became seriously ill and died at home in Pennsylvania several months later of spinal meningitis and typhoid fever. He died on July 24,1903 and was buried in the Gilmore Cemetery, Cameron, Pa.

The likelihood that George Alexander Logue (my great-grandfather)and his sons had spent time talking to his second cousin, Ezra, is quite high, given the fact that they lived just a few miles from each other. Ezra Logue’s description of the merits of central Idaho apparently captivated the interest of George’s three sons (John, Thomas and Frederick).

The elder son, John Logue, came out to Idaho in 1902 to see for himself "...when he returned to to Pennsylvania he had a lot of glowing tales to tell about that big new country."

This apparently convinced his younger brother Thomas Elbridge Logue, another son of George Alexander, who also went to Idaho and in 1902 took out a stone and timber claim on the Middle Fork, above Garden Valley, Idaho, his first year in the West. In 1904 Thomas married Marie Winifred Dexter at Crawford, Idaho and in 1906 filed for a a homestead, east of Cascade on what is now part of the Tom Davis ranch. They lived there until 1937 when they retired to Cascade.

At about the same time Frederick (the third son) moved out to Thunder City, Valley County, and established a mercantile store to supply the miners of the booming Thunder Mountain gold-strike area.

From Valley County, Idaho - Prehistory to 1910 (Valley County History Project) pg. 236 - Another brother, Tom, came west and homesteaded between Crawford and Thunder City;  pg 249 - Among these settlers were a family from far-away Pennsylvania, well known in their strict honesty and good business principles. They saw the possibilities of this region and decided to make it their home. The son who accompanied them, soon after his arrival married in the family of one of our oldest and most respected families in Long Valley [Walter Dexter]. (The Long Valley Advocate, published in Lardo, Oct. 27, 1904)