Another Sellers History

Do you ever keep finding family histories for some of those ‘bushes’ in your tree and wish you could do the same for your own ancestor? That’s how I’m feeling with my SELLERS research.

I keep finding narratives going back to the Kentucky days for descendants of James and Mary (Crawford) Sellers in various county histories but sadly have yet to find anything similar for my own CRAWFORD line,

Today’s finds were in the Biographical and Genealogical History of Appanoose and Monroe Counties, Iowa. This first was in the biography of William Mercer while the second was a biography of Dr. Moses Sellers, grandson of James and Mary (Crawford) Sellers.

Bernetta Sellers

William Mercer Biography

page 268

On the 27th of March, 1856, Mr. Mercer married Miss Bernetta H. Sellers, a native of Indiana, and a daughter of Nathan and Mary (Yowell) Sellers. Her father was a son of James and Mary (Craw-

page 269

ford) Sellers, and the former, a native of Kentucky and of Scotch descent, died in his native state, while the latter passed away in Indiana. Nathan Sellers was born in Kentucky and when he had arrived at years of maturity wedded Mary, daughter of William and Margaret (Coppage) Yowell. Her father was of English lineage and lived in Kentucky. He died in an explosion of a steamer on which he was a passenger, and his wife died in Kentucky when more than ninety years of age. In 1854 Mr. and Mrs. Sellers came to Iowa and here spent their remaining days, the former dying in Appanoose county at the age of seventy-five, the latter at the age of eighty years in Monroe county. They had eight children, of whom five or yet living, including Mrs. Mercer, the estimable wife of our subject. To Mr. and Mrs. Mercer have been born ten children, six of whom are yet living : Henry, who is married and has two children: William L., who is married and has three children: John P., who is married and has four children; Emma, at home; Ida, also with her father; and Inez, who married Dr. C. N. Hyatt and has one child. A daughter. Florence, died at the age of twenty-three years, and the others died in infancy.

S. Thompson Lewis, compiler and editor, Biographical and Genealogical History of Appanoose and Monroe Counties, Iowa (New York: The Lewis Publishing Company, 1903), pages 268-269; digital images,, viewed online 21 October 2022.

Moses Y Sellers, M.D.

The medical corps at Moulton includes the above named physician, who has been practicing there over thirty-three years and has become thoroughly identified with the growth and progress of the place. Though a native of Indiana Dr. Sellers has been a resident of Iowa nearly half a century and has done his share as a citizen to help forward the marvelous development which has characterized this state during that eventful period. The family is of Kentucky origin, his father, Nathan Sellers, having been born on a farm near Lexington in the first quarter of the nineteenth century. He married Mary Yowell, also a member of a Kentucky household, and with her moved to Indiana at an early period in the history of that state. He settled on a farm in Putnam county and in after years rose to a position of prominence in that community, being elected treasurer of the county and otherwise honored by his political associates. In 1854 he removed with his family to Iowa and located near Albia, county seat of Monroe, and there resumed his old occupation of tilling the soil.
Moses Y. Sellers, next to the youngest of his father’s eight children, was born near Grecncastle. Indiana. August 5, 1839, and was a boy almost fifteen years old when the migration was made to Iowa. He

page 337

assisted his father on the farm and attended school until he reached his majority, when he engaged in teaching, and followed that occupation for five years. During the year 1864 he spent some time at the Keokuk Medical College and after leaving that was engaged for four and a half years in the practice of medicine at Iconium. Afterward he returned to the same institution at Keokuk, where he took a thorough course and was graduated in the class of 1880. Immediately thereafter he returned to his office at Moulton, and that town has ever since been the central point from which he prosecutes his professional labors. The Doctor is a member of the Des Moines Medical Association and the Medical Society of Wayne and Appanoose Counties. His religious affiliations are with the Christian church and his fraternal connections are confined to membership in the Independent Order of Odd Fellows.
May 14, 1867, Dr. Sellers was united in marriage with Sarah Cassie Stauber, who died in October, 1870, leaving two children, whose married names are Mrs. Lillie May Brunk and Mrs. Flora Effie Bradley. August 30, 1877, Dr. Sellers contracted a second marriage, his bride being Elizabeth C. Tipton, who died leaving three children : Mrs. Jennie Bell Brunk, Maggie, and Earl D. Sellers, who is a medical student in the Louisville Medical College. Dr. Sellers contracted his third matrimonial alliance with Mrs. Ann Primm, a native of Virginia, who came west with her parents in 1853. Mrs. Sellers is the daughter of Samuel Peek, who married Mary Hildreth, by whom he had ten children : Elizabeth, Amelia, Aaron, Eli, Gustavus, Alfred, Ann, Mack, Christopher Columbus, and Casandra. Of these children Christopher C. and Mrs. Sellers are the only ones living. Mrs. Sellers was married in Virginia to A. P. Primm and lived with him a few years near Lafayette, Indiana, after which they came to Greene county, Iowa. Mrs. Primm’s marriage

page 338

to Dr. Sellers occurred at Lancaster, Missouri, in 1890. since which time she has presided over the household at Moulton with the dignity and grace of the experienced housekeeper.

S. Thompson Lewis, compiler and editor, Biographical and Genealogical History of Appanoose and Monroe Counties, Iowa (New York: The Lewis Publishing Company, 1903), pages 336-338; digital images,, viewed online 21 October 2022.

Saturday Night Genealogy Fund

It’s Saturday Night

Time for More Genealogy Fun

Your mission, should you decide to accept it (cue the Mission Impossible! music) is to:

1)  Which family surname line (of identified ancestors) of yours stayed the longest in one U.S. state or other country province/shire since, say, 1600?  For example, in the USA, my Seaver line was in Massachusetts from 1634 to 1940.  For England, my Vaux line was in Somerset from the late 1500s to 1840.  For Canada, my Kemp line was there from 1785 to 1902.

*  List the generations for one or two of your long-staying-in-one-locality surname lines.  (Yes, I know that some countries used patronymics – follow the father’s line back in time).

While one of Randy Seaver’s lines stayed in Massachusetts, my ancestors did not stay in the East but were on the move westward — until they settled in Kansas. All of my 2nd great grandparents migrated to Kansas where I still live.

Unfortunately, there are ‘breaks’ in the timeline.

  • My father attended graduate school in Lincoln, Nebraska which means that my parents and I were not in Kansas for those two years.
  • When my great-grandmother, Winnie Hutchinson died in 1913, her husband and children lived in Kansas City, Missouri for a short time.
  • While Alexander Briles moved his family, including his son, Noah Briles, to Kansas around 1858, Noah was in Iowa working as a farm hand before returning to Kansas.

So, eliminating myself and my parents, below are my various lines and their ‘length of stay in Kansas

  • Crawford — arrived in 1884 thru the death of my grandfather in 1976 – for a total of 92 years
  • Hammond — arrived in Kansas around 1884 thru the death of my grandfather in 1976 — BUT — Richmond Fisk Hammond moved on to California after his daughter, Josie was married. Josie remained in Kansas. – (Again – 92 years)
  • Currey — arrived in Kansas around 1858 thru the death of my grandmother in 1992 — BUT — my grandmother was in Kansas City, Missouri for about 2 years as a teen – for a total of 134 years
  • Hutchinson — arrived in Kansas around 1895 thru the death of my grandmother in 1992 — BUT — again my grandmother was in Kansas City Missouri for about a year – for a total of 97 years
  • Briles — arrived in Kansas in 1858 thru death of my grandfather in 1956 — BUT Noah Briles lived in Iowa for about 9 years – for a total of 98 years minus the 9 years when Noah was in Iowa
  • Ricketts — arrived in Kansas about 1879 thru the death of my grandfather in 1956 – for a a total of 77 years
  • Mentzer — arrived in Kansas about 1873 thru the death of my grandmother in 1984 – for a total of 111 years
  • Wells — arrived in Kansas in 1857 but moved to Michigan and Iowa before moving back to Kansas about 1870 thru the death of my grandmother in 1984 – for a total of 114 years

Even though my grandmother lived in Missouri for a brief time, I’m going with my CURREY line

  • Hiram M. Currey (1835-1901) arrived in Leavenworth County, Kansas around 1858 and served in the Kansas Militia during the civil war
  • Hiram Miles Currey (1866-1943) lived in Leavenworth County, Rooks County, Olathe and Dodge City (and Kansas City, MO)
  • Winnie Letha Currey (1903-1992) – lived in Leavenworth County and Dodge City (and Kansas City, MO for about 2 years

Since the BRILES homestead is still owned by descendants of Alexander Briles, I consider it the line that has been in Kansas the longest. Alexander Briles and his children arrived in Kansas around 1858 and purchased land in Coffey County, Kansas.

Saturday Tidbits

Seneca Youth to U.S. Marines

Dwight Rickman, son of Mr. and Mrs. Frank Rickman, leaves today for Kansas City where he will complete arrangements to go to San Diego for enlistment in the U.S. Marine Corps. Dwight’s examining physician, Dr. H. G. Snyder, pronounced him a perfect specimen of physical manhood.. He weighs about 205 pounds. Two other boys have taken preliminary steps to enlistment in the U.S. Navy.

The Courier Tribune, June 27, 1940, page 2

Letters Home

Dwight Rickman, with the Marines, writes his parents he has completed the preliminary training and was returning to the base at San Diego yesterday. He is eligible to the marine school, has received a medal for efficiency.

The Courier Tribune, August 19, 1940, page 3.

Dwight Rickman, in his weekly letter to his parents, Mr. and Mrs. F. N. Rickman, says that he received a first rating Sept. 21 and was enrolled in “C” School Marines Corps Base, San Diego. His address is Private Dwight C. Rickman, Marine Corps Base, San Diego, Calif.

The Courier Tribune, October 3, 1940, page 3.

Dwight H. Rickman, Private First Class, U.S. Marines has a new address. It is 5th Division, U.S.S. Astoria, Long Beach, California.

The Courier Tribune, November 4, 1940. page 3.

Seneca area newspapers are available online at

Friday Finds

Do you have photocopies from books that are missing the title page or any indication of the book title? Well, I do.

Today’s Friday Finds is a photocopy of a biography of Jesse Hall of the village of Cazenovia which is in Madison County, New York. While I don’t know of any HALL ancestors in the New York area in my tree, my ancestor, Thurston Kennedy Wells’ first wife was Sarah Hall. Since Thurston Wells lived in Madison County, I probably thought there might be a connection. Thus, the photocopies.

Fortunately, the heading “Our County and Its People” provided enough information for a Google search. I was able to locate the book and the biography on and on Ancestry. The title of the book is Our County and Its People: A Descriptive and Biographical Record of Madison County, New York. This book was edited by John E. Smith and published by the Boston History Company in 1899

Below is a transcription of the biography.

Hall, Jesse Wilson, is one of the leading merchants of Cazenovia village, where he has been engaged in the jewelry business for a quarter of a century. Mr. Hall was born in New Berlin, Chenango County, New York, November 5, 1850. His father, also in Cazenovia in 1858, where he died in 1874. He was for eight years steward of Cazenovia Seminary. He was the son of Stephen R. Hall, a native of Dracut, Middlesex county, Mass. an early settler of Brookfield, who removed to that town in 1803, in a wagon, bringing his wife and family and was one of the earlier settlers of that town. Jesse W. was educated at Cazenovia Seminary and at the age of nineteen began to learn the jeweler’s trade with John Greenland, with whom he remained

page 56
one year, and was then for six years in the employ of W. H. Cruttenden, watchmaker and jeweler. He resided in Sherburne one year and in 1878 bought the jewelry business of the estate of John Greenland. In his store, which he purchased in 1882, he has done a successful business. He is an Odd Fellow of high standing and in politics has always been a staunch Republican. Mr. Hall served as town clerk fifteen consecutive years. In 1896 he was elected justice of the peace. He has served as trustee of the village, trustee of Cazenovia Seminary, and member of the board of education. He married, in 1880, Lucky Nichols Bailey, daughter of Lewis and Marietta (Nichols) Bailey.

Based on the information in the biography, I was able to locate Jesse Wilson Hall on Family Search. Thus, I was able to compare his tree to Sarah Hall‘s tree. While this biography is not relevant to my genealogy research, I hope it helps someone else!

Leech – Crawford Connection

Do you ever feel like your tracing after a bright shiny object to find yourself in the middle of a tangled web? That’s how I felt when I stumbled across the reference to the book History of the House of Olichteree of Ayrshire, Scotland while researching the family of John Finley Seller and his wife, Rebecca Sellers.

While I knew of a link between Rebecca’s Sellers family and my Crawford research, I stumbled across references to the family of James Crawford and his wife, Catherine in the book. While there isn’t much information in the book about this James Crawford, there is information about his daughter, Elizabeth and her LEECH descendants.

It is the biography of Elizabeth’s great-nephew, Bolivar F. Leech that contains information about the family of James and Catherine Crawford.

Bolivar F. Leech; son of Squire John Leech and his wife, Drusilla Tate
(Finley) Leech, was born Mch. 27, 1837, in Rockbridge County, Virginia, near Old Oxford church; which is one and one half miles below the confluence of North and South Buffalo Creeks. He graduated from Washington College, Lexington; was three times a delegate to the State Legislature. He owned a fine farm of 600 acres on North Buffalo, the original home place of James and Catharine Crawford, which passed, through their son, Michael Crawford, to his sons, James, John, and Addison Crawford, who sold it on their removal to Greene Co., Ohio, in 1826, leaving none of this family, of the name in Rockbridge Co. He also owned 400 acres, one and one-half miles below the 600 acres, and 350 acres of mountain land, five miles west of his home place; 450 ft. more elevation. This tract was known as Smith’s Flat, or Lang’s Entry. He married Margaret Houston, dau. of John Davies and Martha (Wilson) Houston; and grand- daughter of Rev. Samuel Houston, of Rural Valley, the noted divine and educator, and his wife, Margaret Walker; she was the great granddaughter of John and Sarah (Todd) Houston. Sarah Todd was a daughter of Andrew Todd, an early settler on Hays Creek and among the first members of Old Providence church. An interesting sketch of Andrew Todd’s immediate ancestors is found in the National Enc. of Am. Biography, which traces them three generations back to the battle of Bothwell Bridge in Scotland, in 1670. Andrew Todd’s son, Sarah (Todd) Houston’s brother, Samuel Todd, High Sheriff, of Botetourt Co., 1791-92, was the father of Jane Todd, wife of Thomas Crawford, son of James Crawford, of North Buffalo, and brother of Michael Crawford, who married Eleanor Leech. B. F. Leech died Aug., 1907. 9 children.

Clementine Railey, History of the House of Ochiltree of Ayrshire, Scotland: with the genealogy of the families of whose who came to America, and some of the allied families, 1124-1916 (Sterling, Kansas: Bulletin Printing Company, 1916), page 312-313; digital images,, viewed online 18 October 2022.

Since the families in this book seem to follow a similar migration path to my CRAWFORD family, I believe I need to expand by CRAWFORD research to contain another James Crawford – James and his wife Catherine!

Underground Railroad

Do you ever try to find the source of a story hint for someone in your Ancestry tree? Well, today, I followed such a hint and it led me to a history of the Ochiltree family with many interesting stories and connections not only to my SELLERS research but to my CRAWFORD research.

One of those stories is about Nancy Sellers Hawkins and the underground railroad. Nancy Sellers was the daughter of Nathan Sellers (1753-1824). Thus, she is the sister-in-law to Henry Duggins (step-son of James Crawford). Nancy’s aunts would include Mary and Sarah Crawford, wives of her uncles, James and William Sellers.

Nancy married John J Hawkins in 1789 and lived in Preble County, Ohio prior to moving to Jay County, Indiana. It is in Jay County, Indiana where, according to the story, her home became a ‘station’ on the underground railroad.

page 312

Nancy Sellers; m. John J. Hawkins, b. 1789; moved to Preble Co., O., and
from there, were pioneers in Jay Co., Ind. They were among the first settlers. Mr. Hawkins met with an accident, while hanging a deer which he had killed, which resulted in his death within a year, on Mch. 15, 1832, ag’d 42 years. He was the first white man buried in Jay Co., Indiana.
Nancy (Sellers) Hawkins’ home was what was called a station on the “Underground Railroad.” Slaves escaping from Ky., to Canada, were given shelter at her house. Her sons, Samuel, and B. W. Hawkins, carried the mail by turns, from Winchester to Ft. Wayne, by way of Deerfield, Hawkins’ Cabin, New Corydon, and Thompson’s Prairie. One evening, in the month of Feb. 1834, Samuel reached his mother’s cabin on his re-turn from Ft. Wayne, while a heavy snow was falling. It was already ten inches deep. While the family were enjoying themselves around the fire, a rap was heard at the door, and, on its being opened, eight negroes, six men and two women, presented themselves, and begged for a night’s lodging. Their request was granted. They said they were going to work on the canal, which was being built at Fort Wayne. The next morning they started on their way, northward, and Samuel Hawkins went to Winchester, with his mail. There he learned that the fugitives were slaves, and there he met their pursuers, who asked him if he had “met” the slaves. He replied that he had not, which was technically, true, but misleading to the manhunters. The reward for their apprehension was one thousand dollars, and he could have had it, by reporting what he knew. He said, if they would undertake that long, dangerous, journey, on foot, and thro’ the deep snow, to gain their liberty, he could not find it in his heart to betray them, into bondage. When the pursuers were put on the wrong track, he returned, and found the negroes, and told them that their masters were after them, to run for their lives. One of the women, who was old and feeble, uttered a wild shriek, and fell in a swoon. The leader of the band said, “Look well to your priming boys,” as they were heavily armed. Then turning to the young mail carrier he said, “Young man, our blood may be poured out like water, but none of us will be taken alive.” Hawkins hastily relieved their fears, got off his horse, helped put the fainting woman on his saddle, aided her as far as his time would permit, and giving them directions, returned to his route, and never heard from them more.
Another similar anecdote, was told by B. W. Hawkins, Samuel’s

page 313

brother. In the fall of 1833, while he was carrying the mail, four ne-groes called at his mother’s, to stay all night. They were finely dressed, and had plenty of money; said they were from Richmond, and going to Ft. Wayne, to work on the canal. The next morning, Benjamin started to Fort Wayne, and the negroes started, also. When he got there, he found the master of the fugitives waiting for him. When he found who the young man was, he treated him very kindly, kept him in his room at the hotel, told him he was his cousin, and asked him all about his family. The man was Dr. Campbell, proprietor of the celebrated Hot Springs, of Kentucky. He told the mail-carrier of his loss, that they were his musicians at the Springs, played for his guests during the season, and the rest of the year went where they pleased, and were allowed to keep what they made. He told Benjamin, that there was a reward of $800.00 for them, and he could have it, if he would apprehend them, and report to him. Benjamin said nothing. The next day, on his return, he found the negroes, and told them they were runaway slaves, which they denied. But he told them who they were, and where they belonged; that he did not believe in slavery, hoped they would get away, and offered to show them another road, which would take them around Fort Wayne, which he did. Seven years afterwards, his uncle. Bird Hawkins, was discussing the slavery question, with Benjamin’s brother, Joseph, and told of the runaway musicians, how they reached Canada, joined the king’s army, and wrote to their master, that they would not have left him, but that they were afraid that when he died they would be sold. Dr. Campbell went to Canada, found them, offered to sign their freedom papers, and pay them more wages, if they would return. He was arrested, for trying to persuade the king’s soldiers to desert, the penalty of which was death. He sent to Kentucky for his lawyer, who finally got him clear, but it cost him $1,000.00. Benjamin heard the story, but never gave a hint that he knew anything about the case.

Clementine Railey, History of the House of Ochiltree of Ayrshire, Scotland: with the genealogy of the families of whose who came to America, and some of the allied families, 1124-1916 (Sterling, Kansas: Bulletin Printing Company, 1916), page 312-313; digital images,, viewed online 18 October 2022.

Ancestry Photo Hint

How do you handle Ancestry photo hints? Do you save them or do you ignore them? I have to admit that I ignore a lot of them. However, when I don’t have a photo of an individual, I will try to find the one originally posted and save photo to their gallery.

At times, those photo hints lead to other sources. That is the case when I was working thru the hints for Milton Seller, son of John Finley Seller and his wife Rebecca (Sellers) Seller. One of those photo hints was the image of an obituary. Fortunately, the original poster also included the name and date of the newspaper where the obituary was published.

Just enough information was shared to challenge me to find the obituary. Thanks to the work of Kenneth Marks and his Newspaper site on Ancestor Hunt, I was able to locate the newspaper online! Searching the Lenox Library’s digital newspaper collection not only found the obituary for Albert Seller, but also the obituary for his brother, Columbus, and his sister, Una and their father, Milton H. Seller!

Columbus S. Seller

Life Story of Columbus S. Seller
Columbus S. seller, oldest son of Milton and Sarah Seller was born in Greencastle, Ind., Sept. 21, 1853, and died at the home of his daughter in Lenox, Iowa, Feb. 20, 1936, at the age of 82 years, 4 months and 29 days.
On Dec. 8, 1880 he was married to Anna Mary Whyte, who preceded him in death on Nov. 10, 1935. Ten children were born, three having preceded the father in death, two dying in infancy and Virgil, who died Feb. 23, 1920.
He is survived by four daughters and three sons, Mrs. Vena Saunders of Beresford, S.D., Mrs. Bertha Toland of Lenox, Mrs. Edith Johnson of Chicago, Ill., Mrs Anna Murphy of Sherman Texas, Lester of Marceline, Mo., Oscar L. of Pierson, Ia., and Cederic N. of Lenox.
Mr. Seller also leaves two sisters and five brothers, Mrs. Florence Corsline of Garden Grove, Ia., Mrs. Una McGrew of Lenox, William H. of Sumner, Wash., John F. of Harlan, Oregon, Albert M. and Cresley R. of Lenox and Edwin R. of Kohoka, Mo.
His early days were spent in Greencastle, Ind., where he attended school and graduated form high school of that place. At the age of twenty he came to Iowa, living for a while in Ringgold county, then moving later to Taylor county. In 1913 he moved to Macon, Mo., and later to Marceline.
When a young man he united with the M. E. church and at the time of his death he was a member of the M.E. church of Marceline, Mo.
Funeral services were held Saturday afternoon, Feb. 22, at th Barber funeral home in Lenox, conducted by the Rev. Thomas Kelly. Burial was made in the Lenox cemetery.

“Life Story of Columbus S. Seller,” Lenox Time Table (Lenox, Iowa), 27 February 1936, page 1; digital images, Lenox Advantage Preservation ( : viewed online 15 October 2022).

Albert Seller

Life story of Albert Seller
Albert Milton, son of Milton and Sarah Seller was born in Green Castle, Ind., on June 25, 1865, and died at his home five miles northeast of Lenox, Iowa, on February 13, 1937, at the age of 71 years, 7 months and 20 days.
At the age of 12, he came with his parents to Iowa, where they settled on a prairie farm six miles south and one mile west of Lenox. In 1914 he moved into the town of Lenox, making that his home until 1933, at which time he went out to live on the farm, where he died.
Mr. Seller is survived by two sisters and three brothers, Mrs. Florence Gorsline of Garden Grove, Iowa, Mrs. Una McGrew of Lenox, John F. of Newport, Ore, Edwin R. of Kohoka, Mo., and Chelsey R. of Lenox.
He was a member of the Methodist church of Lenox, having united with that body in the year 1915.
Bert was of a quiet disposition, loving the home life, and honest and upright in all his dealings. For years he had been anemic and gradually succumbed to that ailment, but through it all he was very patient to the last.
Funeral services were held at the Methodist church in Lenox, Monday, February 15, and burial was made at Clearfield.

“Life Story of Albert Seller,” Lenox Time Table (Lenox, Iowa), 18 February 1937, page 1; digital images, Lenox Advantage Preservation ( : viewed online 15 October 2022).

Una Alma (Seller) McGrew

Obituary – McGrew

Una Alma (Seller) McGrew, daughter of Milton H. and Sarah Jane Seller, was born October 7, 1867, in Greencastle, Indiana, and passed this life in Lenox, Iowa, February 6, 1956, aged 88 years 3 months and 30 days.
At the age of 10 she came with her family to Iowa where they settled on a prairie farm near Conway.
On February 17, 1909 she was united in marriage with Hilton U. McGrew, of Grandview, Iowa. Following the marriage at the bride’s family home, they made their home on a farm near Grandview. After one year they moved to Van Wert where Mr McGrew became ill. In a short time he died at Bethany, Missouri where he was being treated for the illness. The following March Mrs. McGrew returned to the home farm near Conway where she lived with her father and brothers until 1914 when they moved to Lenox. Since that time Lenox has been her home.
Una professed her faith in Christ when a girl about 13 years old and joined the Greenwood Methodist Church near their home. After moving to Lenox she moved her membership to the Methodist Church where she continued a faithful member. Though she had no children very much and spent her life doing for others.
Preceding her in death were: Her father and mother, 5 brothers; Columbus, John, Will, Edwin, and Albert; 2 sisters Mrs. Louella Ray and Mrs Florence Gorsline. Surviving are one brother Chelsey R Seller of Lenox, a niece Miss Pluma Ray, who has lived with Mrs McGrew since 1927, a step-son Vern McGrew, of Marshaltown, Iowa, a number of nephews and nieces, and her many friends and neighbors.

“Obituary – McGrew,” Lenox Time Table (Lenox, Iowa), 16 February 1956, page 7; digital images, Lenox Advantage Preservation ( : viewed online 15 October 2022).

Milton H. Seller – The Father

page 4
Milton Hawkins seller was born at Evansville, Ind., Nov. 12, 1822, and passed away at the home in Lenox, Oct. 29, 1914, aged 91 years, 11 months and 14 days.
He was married Feb. 28, 1851 to Sarah J. Leach, who preceded him in death, dying on May 11, 1906. To their union were born nine children — six boys and three girls — all of whom are living, and except two who were too far away, were present at the funeral. The children are Columbus S. of near Clearfield; William H. of Bismark, Washington; John F. of Mabtou, Wash.; Mrs. Florence Gossline of van Wert; Mrs. Luella Ray, Albert M. Mrs. Una McGrew and Charles R., of Lenox and Edwin R. of Memphis, Mo.
For 26 years after his marriage Mr. Seller lived in Putman county, Ind., near Greencastle, from which place they came to Iowa and settled in Grant township on the farm where he lived until last March when he removed to Lenox. Soon after he was married he was converted and with his wife became a member of the Methodist Church.
A double funeral was held for Mr. Seamans and Mr. Seller at the M.E. Church at 2 o’clock, Sunday, Nov. 1, conducted by Rev. Walter A. Morgan, assisted by Rev. A. L. Davidson. The body of Mr. Seller was laid to rest in the Clearfield cemetery and that of Mr. Seamans in Fairview cemetery, Lenox.

“Obituary,” Lenox Time Table (Lenox, Iowa), 5 November 1914, page 4; digital images, Lenox Advantage Preservation ( : viewed online 16 October 2022).

Sellers Biography

Do you remember GeoCities, RootsWeb, mailing lists, and many other ways genealogists shared prior to Facebook? One of those communities that I participated in was a Sellers Family website. This site offered a way for fellow researchers to share their findings.

Unfortunately, that website no longer exists. Fortunately, I have a ‘printout’ of some of the information posted on the site, including the transcription of a book about John Crawford Sellers, 1821-1921. Unfortunately, I have not been able to locate the source information for that little book. The book was shared by SSgt James Sellers from his military email address.

This is a small booklet from the Indiana State Historical Society
Library at Indianapolis, Indiana. It was probably made for a family
reunion that was held that year (1921). *There were a few of errors in the book. The first is the place where the family came from. Most other
sources say the family came from Ireland. **Another error is the mention of John C.’s father who was actually James Sellers. The last error I noticed was John C.’s War of 1812 service. According to his pension deposition, he served in Capt. James Davidson’s Company under Colonel Richard M. Johnson. He stated that he “did not take part in any battle,” but he was in many “long and hard marches.” The following booklet was copied exactly as it was published.

John Crawford Sellers

To whom these presents come, greetings:
It is my intention on this one hundredth anniversary of the
marriage of my grandfather, John Crawford Sellers, to write a brief history for the descendants of so good and reputable man as he, and trust that we may ever follow in the footsteps of our forefathers with the same true Christian spirit and true Americanism.
Hoping you may enjoy the same interest in reading it as I have in compiling it, with love and best wishes,
I remain,
W. M. Sellers

John Crawford Sellers

John Crawford Sellers was a descendant of a race of pioneers while this country was still a colony of Great Britain. His ancestors
came from the home country of *Bobby Burns, Scotland, into the land which was new and wild, following the trails of Daniel Boone and other Indiana warriors from Virginia into Kentucky, when younger generations ventured across the Ohio River and settled in Putnam County, Ind., and younger generations have moved on westward, yet old Putnam is a good place to come.

John C. was a son of **William and Mary Sellers, early settlers of Kentucky, was born March 26th, 1796, as we understand, in Garrard County, Kentucky. His father died when John C. was a boy, which left him as the mainstay for the help and support of his mother and some younger brothers. He followed freighting with a team in the absence of railroads till 1813, enlisted as a soldier under R.B. McAfee, Captain, in Richard M. Johnson’s regiment of Kentucky volunteers mounted infantry, which went to Canada and fought in the battle of the River Thames, October 5th, 1813, where the noted Indian chief, Tecumseh, was killed. John C.’s horse was killed in the battle, but he was not hurt. He was mustered out November 19th, 1813.

Josephine Throop, one of our Putnam County historians, quoted
-“In the battle at the River Thames Tecumseh, their great chief, was
killed and the Indians fled, filled with dismay and grief.”

John C. was married to Fanny Brown near Lancaster, Garrard County, Kentucky, March 1st, 1821, one hundred years ago last March. They came to Putnam County in 1822, settled on the land the old homestead where J.L. Sellers now lives. Their first log cabin was in the yard near where the third house built on this lot now stands, ninety-nine years after first settlement.

Moving from Kentucky a distance of 200 miles with one small horse, saddle and bridle and such bundles as they could carry, bought a piece of land of John F. Sellers, a cousin, who had preceded his coming and later entered other land. Worked at 28 cents a day and dinner waiting on brick masons, while building a brick house on the Dewees farm but not on the eight-hour system. Children born to them: Lucy, James W., William, Mary, Elizabeth, Rebecca, Nancy, Amanda, Sarah, John L., Fannie, Martha J., Joseph B. John L. is the only one now living. They were hard-working, saving, yet charitable and honest, loved and respected by all who knew them. Were members of the Presbyterian Church at Putnamville, Indiana, with dear old Dr. Layman, Worthington Williams, James Ingram, Wm. Walden, Jacob Hixon, John Beck, Wm. Grigsby, James Hester and others with their families, with the Rev. Ransom Hawley, pastor, for a period of thirty years.

Grandfather had four brothers, Harvey, Nathan, Nelsen and Perry, who lived in this vicinity in an early day. Perry moved to Iowa before the war. Two sisters, Mrs. John F. Sellers and Mrs. Sarah Elder, were early settlers in Putnam County. John F. Sellers was one of the first settlers of Greencastle, father of W. W. Sellers and grandfather of Charles Sellers, who now reside in Greencastle.

Mrs. Sellers, grandmother, had four brothers, early settlers in this county, Samuel, Thomas, Bentley and James Brown. James lived a bachelor with Aunt Polly and Matilda, about a mile from here over the
hill west, two as good old ladies as could be found. The other sister was Mrs. Greenberry Bryant, lived in Hendricks County and was mother of Z. T. Bryant, whose war record is mentioned in the items.

Lucy, the oldest, married Thomas Leech, had one child, Sarah. Mr. and Mrs. Leech died in an early day. Sarah married Wm. Brown, one child, Eva, who years ago after her father’s and mother’s death married and moved to Muncie, Indiana.

William, the second son, cast his lot with the 1849 delegation to the California gold fields and died there. No railroad transportation in those days. Was buried there.

Elizabeth, after a short married life, left a daughter, Mary Etta, who lived after her mother’s death with her good old grand parents, until her marriage to Clinton Oneal.

A few years after her marriage they went west. Mary Etta died several years ago.

Nancy married Nathaniel Talbott in the 50’s as well as we can remember, as the old family Bible is not at hand. Children- Fanny, Mary, Lutisha, John W. and Mrs. Talbott. The three girls deceased, John W. in the west.

Nathaniel was a soldier for a time in the 10th Indiana Volunteers. Was in the Battle of Mill Springs in Kentucky, January 19th, 1862, where General Thomas defeated the Confederates and where General Zollicoffer, the Confederate general, was killed. Mr. Talbott was later discharged on account of failing health and only lived a short time after the war.

Mary, Fannie, Amanda and Sarah, children of grandfather and grandmother died while young.

Rebecca Sellers, was born May 20th, 1830, was married March 22nd, 1857, to Joseph Gilmore. Children: Elizabeth Young of Manhatten, Indiana; John Franklin of Chandler, Oklahoma; Josie Best of Putnam County, wife of Charles Best, living west of Greencastle. Children of a second marriage to Mr. Easter are George and Sallie of Searcy, Arkansas. Samuel Gilmore, who lived with Aunt Rebecca, was a son of Mr. Gilmore by a former marriage. Josie Best has a daughter Grace married to Jesse Sears. Josie Best has a daughter Katie married to Albert Houck. Mattie, deceased daughter, was married to Edwin Torr. All Living in vicinity of Greencastle, Indiana.

Joseph Gilmore gave his life for his country during the Civil war as a member of Co. I, 27th Indiana Volunteers. After surviving the battles of Winchester’s retreat, Cedar Mountains, Antiedam, Fredricksburg, Va., Chancellorsville, May 2nd and 3rd, 1863, he lost his life at the Battle of Gettysburg, July 2nd and 3rd, 1863. A brave soldier and a good man.

Aunt Rebecca died at Copperton, Oklahoma, April 13th, 1906.

Lizzie, the oldest child married to Barzilla Young December 16th, 1875, at the age of 18 years at Reelsville, Indiana. Children: Albert, 45 years of age in 1921, married to Luella Wilson, November, 1894; Nellie, 43 years of age in 1921, married Oscar Brown November 2nd, 1895, later to Willie Brothers; Alice, married to Harry Ingraham, July 22nd, 1903, died January 22nd, 1919, at the age of 39 years; Jimmie, died February 12th, 1919, at the age of 36 years; Clarence, died February 27, 1886, at the age of IO months; Walter, 34 years of age in 1921, married to Cecil Mulinix July 19th, 1910; Florence, 26 years of age in 1921.

Barzila Young served time in the Civil War as a soldier of Co. _________ Regiment, was good trusty man and a hard worker. He died July 13th, 1913, at Manhatten, Indiana, 70 years of age.

Martha J. Sellers, the youngest daughter of J. C. S. and the next to the youngest child, was married to Harrison Ruark March 8th, 1870. Children: John Crawford, died at the age of 11 months; Daniel, age 49 this year, has been a railroad man for twenty-five or thirty years. Is yard master for the M. K. & T. Railroad Co. at Tulsa, Oklahoma, at this time.

Mary R. lives at Greencastle, Indiana, making good on her own resources since being left alone by the death of her parents, having a very responsible position with the firm of the King Morrison Foster Company at Greencastle which she is holding with much credit to her industry and faithfulness.

Mrs. Martha Raurk died at their home, one mile south of the old home, April 19th 1909.

Harrison Raurk was a soldier in the Civil War. Went from near Maysville, Mason County, Kentucky. Was a member of the 2nd Kentucky Cavalry, 45th Regiment. After the war closed came to Putnam County, lived in the community till death, which occurred March 29th, 1918.

James Washington Sellers was born April 24th. 1823, worked on the farm and taught school. Was married to Miss Nancy D. Fenley of near Stilesville, Hendricks County, Indiana, September 21st, 1848. Bought a small farm and settled just south of and adjoining the old homestead. Children were Lucy Ann, William M., Fanny M., Mary A., Sarah A. Mrs. Sellers and three youngest children, John, Aaron and Joseph, all died in August and September, 1863, within seventeen days. Lucy, the oldest, married Wm. W. Hodge March 26th, 1868, or 69. Lucy died about forty-two years ago, leaving three children, Carrie, James and Dora. All live in the West. Mrs. Carrie Pearcy lives at Los Angeles, California. Second marriage ofW. W. Hodge to Miss Emerine Mercer, one child. Mrs. Minnie Lewis of near Putnam ville, age 40 years. W. W. Hodge served three years in the Civil War in the 128th Regiment Indiana Volunteers.

W. M. Sellers was born April 22nd, 1851. His father, James W., died June 11th, 1865, W. M. was 14 years old with one sister older than him and three younger. They stayed at the old home till grown and married. W. M. was married to Miss Josephine Hutcheson December 20th, 1871. Children: James H., Clay C., Joseph M., Nannie A. James is 48 years old, Clay 46, J.M. 43, Nannie died November 9th, 1897. Two babies died in infancy. Josephine Sellers died April 19th, 1903. James married Mrs. Maggie Stevens of Indianapolis. Clay married Lelia Mae Black July 28th, 1912. Joseph married Miss Stella Heady of
Indianapolis. Joseph M. has one son by a former marriage, Roy K., 21 years of age, who lives at Terre Haute, Indiana.

James H., after passing through two train wrecks and being badly crippled, is again working in Pennsylvania yards at Indianapolis.

Clay is stationed at Indianapolis at Illinois Central Yards.

Joseph M. (or Pete) is in the employ of C.I. & L. road running from Chicago to Indianapolis.

Clay C. service in the 159th Regiment, Co. I. Wilbur Starr, captain, in Spanish-American War. The boys all live at Indianapolis at this date – 1921.

Fannie M. Sellers married Wm. M. Turner January 15th, 1872. Children: James W. married Miss Ollie Hutcheson and lives now four miles south of Brazil, Indiana. Ollie married Clifford Sutton and now lives
near Clay City, Indiana.

John R. died at hospital at Brazil after second operation. He had served two years as a soldier in World’s War, April 17th, 1921. He was highly recommended as a soldier, was a noble boy, had many friends, was 29 years old when he died, after every care and comfort money could buy or the love of true hearts could secure by his brother and family and his many friends. Was buried at Boone cemetery near Hamrick, Indiana. Mrs. Turner is living but in very poor health as result of a case of typhoid fever. W. M. Turner died about 1901. Children of James and Ollie Turner, Miss Edna, 24; Walter, 17 years of age and are present today, 1921. James is 48 years old.

Mary A. Sellers married Geo. W. McCray of a family of old Putnam County residents December 15th, 1873. Oran . McCray, the only child, was a prominent physician at Marshall, Missouri. Mrs. McCray living in that locality. She is 67 years of age this year. as at the reunion last year. Hope she comes this year.

Sarah A. married Andrew P. Kiser in 1877. Children: Minnie, Ray and Fred. They are located at and around Boise City, Iowa. Mrs. Kiser was 66 years old July 26th, this year, 1921, and we can’t pass without a compliment to these girls. How willing and ready they were at any time to help their brother with his work while they were passing the period from childhood to womanhood, after being left by the death of their parents. A pleasant memory by the brother for these dear sisters for their help and kindness.

John L. Sellers and a cousin, Z. T. Bryant, enlisted in Civil War September 4th, 1862, 3rd Indiana Cavalry, Col. Robt. 0. Cline, Capt. 0. M. Powers, 1st Lieut. George J. Langsdale. Did patrol duty in Indiana and Illinois, was in Morgan raid, was at the siege of Knoxville and in cavalry service in Tennessee in Battle of Severville Road and Carter Station and helped rid that territory of a band of Confederates that was buswhacking Union citizens in East Tennessee. Was in the raid made from Chattanooga over Lookout Mountain and a long term of cavalry fighting and raiding Confederate territory. Then was placed in the command of General Kilpatrick, which meant hard cavalry service and a sufficient amount of fighting, as General Kilpatrick’s division was busy and took desperate chances, until Sherman’s march to the sea was ordered. Followed General Hood from Atlanta to Rome. Georgia, and other service till they started on Sherman’ march. When that was completed was relieved and started for home in Putnam County, Indiana, the 21st day of July, 1865.

Z. T. Bryant, with the same record, was captured near Fayetteville, North Carolina, the 7th of March, 1865, served time in the notorious Libby Prison till Confederate Gen. R. E. Lee evacuated Richmond, Virginia, where the prison was located. Mr. Bryant was the last prisoner released from that deplorable pen. Mr. Bryant is living in the State of Oregon.

John L. Sellers was married December 11th, 1866, to Miss Mary Matkin, a daughter of Wm. Matkin, an old resident and citizen of Greencastle, Indiana, and a sister of Miss Mattie Matkin of Greencastle
at this time.

Children: Edward J., Katie, Nannie, Jennie (deceased), Sallie
(deceased), Minnie and Ida. Mrs. Sellers died 1878.

A second marriage August 3rd, 1880, to Miss Lizzie Wells, daughter of Levi and Catherine Wells, formerly of Madison Township, Putnam County, and the estimable lady is living and helping to make this reunion a very pleasant occasion. Children: William, Crawford, Mamie and Myrtle. Uncle John is 85 years of age today, August 25th, 1921.

Edward J. Sellers was married to Clara Silvers September 25th, 1891. Children: Arthur, 28 years old, married November 4th, 1920 to Miss Caroline Eubank, after serving time in late war in France; Lawrence, 27 years old, served his country in World War in Russia; Ethel, 24 years old, married to Harrold Jones; Joyce, 23 years old, married to Beatrice Baker; Louise, 18 years old; Harrold, 15 years old; Eddie, 13 years old. Clarence died in infancy in 1910. Edward and family live near Lake City, Michigan, and is 54 years old. His wife is 46 years old.

Katie, oldest daughter lives at Greencastle, is 52 years old, owns her own property and is a dressmaker.

Nannie Elizabeth married January 14, 1892. Children: daughter Hazel, 27 years old; Russ, deceased, address Colorado Springs, Colorado.

Minnie, 45 years of age this year, was married October 3rd, 1897, to Mr. Roy Grogan, who is 46 years old. Children: Grace Mae, 21 years old, was married to Frank Jones, September 17th, 1918. Live at Indianapolis. One daughter, Dorothy Mae, 2 years old.

Dorothy Florence, 17 years old.

Esther Alberta, 12 years old.

Charles, 10 years old.

Mr. Grogan lives at Indianapolis, Indiana, at this date and is a valuable man in the employ of Pennsylvania Railroad Company.

Ida May, 42 year, married to Hays Williams, October 4th, 1903. Children: Esta) Lenard, 17 years old; Hubert Layman, 13 years old.

Mr. Williams is station master at Union depot, Terre Haute. Address, 1719 Sycamore Street, Terre Haute, Indiana.

William Crawford Sellers is 40 years of age. Was married October 16th, 1906, to Miss Grace Edith Haymaker of Putnamville, Indiana. Children: John Riley, 14; Mary Bernice, 10; Charles Haymaker, 8; Edith Lucille, 5; Ethel may, born January 18th, 1921.

William Crawford is living on part of the old homestead and a help and comfort to his father and mother in assisting and looking after farming interests for them and a useful citizen to the community.

Mary Edith was married to Earnest C. Smith October 17th, 1910. Children Madlin Elizabeth, 10 years old; Joice Sellers, 8 years old; Mildred Olive, 6 years old; John Raymond, 3 years old.

Mr. Smith lives on the old Swartz farm, one mile west of Putnamville.

Myrtle Olive, the youngest child, married to Mack Brown of Warren Township, Putnam County, Indiana, May 19th, 1915. Mr. Brown died february 14th, 1917.

A second marriage to Ross Smithson of Harlem, Montana, 1918. P. at Sweetman. Child, Mary Elizabeth, born November 2nd, 1920.

August 25th, 1893, twenty-eight years ago:

Joseph Brown Sellers, the youngest of the family, was born February 8th, 1843. He enlisted in Co. I, 27th Indiana Volunteers, a regiment that went through much hard service and hard fighting during Civil war, was in the battle at Winchester, March 23rd, 1862, Cedar Mountain, August 9th, 1862, was wounded in right leg in Battle of Chancellorsville, May 2nd, 1864, at Resaca (New Hope Church), where he lost his left leg, May 15th, 1864. After being dressed, was loaded in an ambulance with another wounded soldier on a trip of forty miles to get to a railroad town laying side by side in the bottom of the wagon. The other soldier died on the way and a very rough road. Just imagine what
Uncle Joe had to pass through that long night, but his ever patient disposition was surely present on that trip. He arrived home about the 4th of July as we were cutting wheat.

Was married on September 27, 1868, to Miss Viola A. Kiser. Owned a farm and farmed in Warren Township, two miles west of Putnamville, several years, then moved to North Salem, Indiana. Engaged
in milling busines in 1901, located in Greencastle. Was a good faithful member of the Presbyterian Church, honored and esteemed by all that knew him. He died April 12th, 1914, at his home in Greencastle, Indiana, age 71 years.

Miss Cora Belle lives with her devoted mother at Greencastle.

Ulysses Grant, the oldest son, who is 49 years of age, lives near North Salem, Indiana. Was married to Miss Ada Catherine Hunt, December 30th, 1898. Children: Benjamin Franklin, 22 years old this year, married to Miss Lois Hazel Hicks August 20th, 1919. Mr. Sellers is present trustee of Eel River Township, Hendricks County.

Rhoda Katherine, 13 years of age.

Frank Crawford Sellers, 46 years of age, who lives at North Salem, Indiana, was married to Miss Daisy Page, November 15th, 1899. Children: Genieva, 20 years of age; Maxwell, 17 years of age; Dortha B.,
12 years of age; Hellen N., 10 years of age; Joseph Henry, 7 years of age.

Earnest Maywood, 44 years of age, was married August 7th, 1915, to Miss Flossie Brown and lives near Bainbridge.

Estella Grace, a dear little baby, died February 23rd, 1883, at the age of 9 months.

Homer Layman, the youngest child, 36 years old this year, was married January 13th, 1912, to Miss Mellessa Tompkins. Children: Edith Elizabeth, 9 years old; Alice Marie, 3 years old. Now lives at
Indianapolis, Indiana.

Mrs. Viola Alma Sellers, wife of Joseph B. Sellers, was a daughter of Mr. Eli and Mary Stillwagon Kiser, highly respected friends and neighbors of sixty and seventy years ago, living in this
neighborhood, the dear father and mother, sister and brothers have long since passed to their happy homes.

originally found on

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun

It’s Saturday Night

Time for More Genealogy Fun

Your mission, should you decide to accept it (cue the Mission Impossible music here) is to:

1) What genealogy fun have you had this past month?  What is your genealogy highlight of the past month.  It could be attending or watching a webinar or local genealogy society meeting,  it could be finding a new ancestor, or it could be reading a new genealogy book, or anything else that you have enjoyed.

Since I don’t keep a ‘calendar’ of what I accomplish each day, I’m not really certain what all I’ve done during the past month. While I post about my research, many of those posts are posted a week or more into the future versus on the day I did the research. Thus, my October blog posts may have actually been researched in September or earlier in the year.

Looking thru my October blog posts, I would have to say there are two ‘categories’ of highlights: records found in my files and county history finds.

Working thru the records I have collected for Hiram Currey of Peoria County, Illinois was definitely a highlight. Not only did I learn a lot about the time period and the Peoria community by transcribing those records, but I was also able to locate some of the documents referred to in the indexes.

And then there’s the information I’m finding in books for the SELLERS family. Interestingly, these county histories not only have information on the SELLERS surname, but they often contain mentions of CRAWFORD families. My current research project is for the family of James Sellers and Mary Crawford. While I would love to find information about Mary’s family, these county histories have mentioned two other CRAWFORD lines. While these lines may connect with the SELLERS family, they do not appear to connect with Mary Crawford’s family. These lines include

  • English Crawford of Knox County, Tennessee
  • James and Catherine Crawford of Rockbridge County, Virginia

Two of my posts this past week discuss my findings from one of these county histories.

Several upcoming posts also discuss my findings in various books for the Sellers family.

Another highlight for the month of October has nothing to do with research, but with DNA. I have tested both of my brothers and we are in our own ‘branch’: R-FT99108. Descendants of the other James Crawford lines with Garrard County, Kentucky roots are in the R-Y88686 branch.

While the paper trail suggests a close relationship between these Garrard County KY Crawford Lines, DNA suggests that our connection goes further back. Working on the theory that my 2nd great-grandfather’s imprisonment in Andersonville may have caused a mutation in the yDNA he passed to his son, I have located a descendant of my 3rd great grandparent thru a different son. He has agreed to do a yDNA test! This development on the DNA front trumps my research and thus is my highlight for October.

Saturday Tidbits

Nemaha County American Legion provides ‘send off’ for first draftees called into service in February 1941.

Legion to Honor
Draftees at Bern

Nemaha county Legionnaires
will honor 1941 draftees just as
the Old Soldiers of the Civil War
honored the Boys of ’17 and ’18
That was decided at a meeting of
the Legion at Centralia. Next
county meeting will be held at
Bern. The next contingent of the
draft will be escorted to Bern by
the ex-service men and there will
be an appropriate program.
Earle W. Taylor Post gave an
oyster supper tot he Auxiliary at
the club rooms here Thursday
nigh, an informal and highly en-
joyed evening. Legionnaires pre-
pared the oysters and trimmings.

“Legion to Honor Draftees at Bern,” Courier Tribune. page 2, 27 Jan 1941. Available online.

Boys of ‘17;
Boys of ‘41

United at Bern

The Legion in a Send-
Off to Next
Monday’s Selectees

The boys of ‘17 had a chance Monday night to see just how robust they were when Uncle Sam drafted them to go to the first World war. In comparison wit the huskies who leave early Monday morning to answer the call of the country, Old Elmer of the American Legion finds himself bog spavined and windbroken.

It all happened in Bern Monday night when 85 Legionnaires,
who belong to six posts in this county, joined in wishing the recruits happy landings. If the real truth is known — and Acting County Commander Harley E. Wilcox expressed the thought the Old soldiers feel their noses are out of joint.

“We are envious of the youth that lets you go,” said Wilcox. “We sincerely hope that you will not be called into conflict but if it does come to that we want you to know we are behind you 100 per cent. There is something in army service that inspires a man — more than anything else on earth — to love of country and we know you too will feel the thrill of the Old Red, White and Blue.”

Only five of the 14 selectees were in Bern Monday night but it was explained that the demands on the time of the boys are so heavy this week that some found they could not fill all their dates, considering too, their datings.

Andy Strahm, Bern commander, who was a member of the first contingent of five men which went to Camp Funston on the first draft in ‘17, opened Monday night’s proceedings and ordered the flag advanced.

Scott Berridge, Holton, who is expected to be a candidate for Kansas department commander next fall, gave the principal address. After urging all ex-service men to register in next Saturday’s enrollment, Mr. Berridge, held close attention, by his eloquence. He feels the Legion has no apology to make for its 22 year contribution to American thought but he also thinks the organization should adapt itself to the rapidly changing events of the day.

“As a matter of fact,” he said, “The Legion is only at the threshold of its influence for Americans may soon be called up to make sober decisions which may profoundly affect what we are pleased to call the American way of life.”

Berridge traced the beginnings of the American way in the Declaration of Confederation, te Constitution and the Bill of Rights; called attention to freedom of assembly, speech and press and the right of petition and inquired where on the continent of Europe such privileges exist today. He thinks America again faces a crisis in the breaking of pledges and treaties. He believes the mission of the Legion is to cultivate a group mind among Americans that will stamp out subversive influences for all time.

“America,” he told the Legion, “stands as the last stronghold of human liberties. We have been too materialistic. We need to remind ourselves that the individual is more important than dividends.

“Our national debt is appalling,” he said, “and yet I am more afraid of bankrupt ideals than I am of bankrupt economy.”

Berridge cautioned the selectees not to allow themselves to be dismayed by the little hardships of army life. “Some of you will probably not care for it but others will come to love it. The public will be watching you,” he said, “and deeply concerned in your welfare. you are conditioning your minds and bodies for the preservation — if need be — of those things which re dearer than life itself.”

Harold Geiger, Sabetha, implored Legionnaires to buy uniforms. The Legion full dress outfit can not be obtained for 412.

The county Legion will meet in Sabetha early in April, the March meeting to be skipped. The district convention will be held in Atchison May 4th and 5th.

“We’re a Little Envious,” They Say

Legionnaires of the associated Nemaha county posts, gave their younger buddies a “send off” in a meeting at Bern Monday night. Acting Commander Harley E. Wilcox, addressing the Boys of ‘41, confessed some degree of envy of their youth and their opportunity to defend the Old Flag.

Shown standing in this picture left to right, are five Nemaha county selectees. Four of the five are to report for duty at midnight Sunday, leaving at 2:00 a.m. eastbound for the reception center at Leavenworth. They are Robert G. Adriance, Seneca; Gerald Wempe, Seneca; Cyril Olberding, Baileyville; and Clarence Hazlett, Onaga. Homer Turner, Oneida, fifth in this row, probably will not get to go with this contingent, being at the foot of the list and displaced by volunteers.

The Legionnaires shown above are: second row, left to right: Edward R. Levick, post commander, Seneca; Scott Berridge, Holton, who stands a good show of being the next department commander of Kansas; Harley E. Wilcox, county adjutant. Bottom row, Ray Condit, post commander, Centralia; Andy Strahm, post commander, Bern.

“Boys of ’17. Boys of ’41, United at Bern,” The Courier Tribune, 20 Feb 1941, page 2. Available online.