Richmond Gathering about 1950

I am unsure how to introduce these pictures.  I do not know the occasion, I cannot really say it is a reunion.  I do not know which family really pulled this together or why, I do not know at whose house the reunion took place.  It seems like an impromptu gathering of the Neilson family, but yet there are Coley’s present.  Maybe the Coleys came to visit so the Neilsons all gathered too?  But then there is the unknown woman.  Is she related to the Neilsons, a distant relative of the Coleys, or both (since Edna Neilson, Art Coley, and Golden Coley are siblings with their mother Martha present).

About all I have been able to determine at this point is the pictures are believed to have been taken in Richmond, Cache, Utah in about 1950.  We venture to guess sometime in the early spring due to the snow still on the mountains.

Back(l-r): Doreen Neilson, Martha Coley, Golden Coley, Edna Neilson, Unknown, Gloria Neilson holding unknown child, Olof Neilson.  Middle: Shirley Coley, Joy Coley (baby), Mary Coley,

Back(l-r): Doreen Neilson, Martha Coley, Golden Coley, Edna Neilson, Unknown, Gloria Neilson holding unknown child, Olof Neilson. Middle: Shirley Coley, Joy Coley (baby), Mary Coley, CarolDean Neilson, Harold Neilson, Russell Neilson.  Front: Unknown, Charlotte Neilson, Steve Coley, Arlan Neilson, unknown (boy sitting apart).

Martha Christiansen Coley (1879-1961) is the widow of Herbert Coley(1864-1942).

Edna Coley Neilson (1900-1983) is the daughter of Herbert and Martha Coley.

Olof Alma Neilson (1891-1960) is the husband of Edna Coley Neilson.

Harold Christian Neilson (1921-1966) is the son of Edna Neilson and Gerold Andrus (1903-1984) but was raised by Olof Neilson (you can read more under the above link for Edna).

Oma Dorine (Doreen) Johnson Neilson (later O’Neil)(1921-2003) is the wife of Harold Neilson.

Charlotte, Arlan, and CarolDean are all children of Harold and Doreen Neilson (although my records show none of these were born yet, but I have not been able to validate their birthdays).

Alma Russell “Russell” Neilson is the son of Olof and Edna Coley.

Gloria May Olson Neilson is the wife of Russell Neilson.  I presume some of the unknowns in the photo are their children, but have not obtained that information yet.

Arthur “Art” Christiansen Coley(1921-2004), not in the above picture but below, is the son of Martha Coley.

Mary Elizabeth Popwitz Coley is the wife of Art Coley.

Stephen “Steve” G Coley is the son of Art and Mary Coley.

William Golden “Golden” Coley (1924-2009) is the son of Herbert and Martha Coley.

Shirley May Hall Coley is the wife of Golden Coley.

Joy Ann Coley is the daughter of Golden and Shirley Coley.

If anyone has contact with any of Harold or Russell’s children, I would like for them to see the pictures and perhaps provide more information.

Unknown and Edna Neilson

Unknown and Edna Neilson

Above you can see Edna Neilson with the unknown lady who appears to be part of the reason the family assembled.  Unfortunately, we do not know who the guest of honor is!  Initially I thought it was some relation of the Neilson clan, but nobody alive in their family seems to know who she is.  But then why would Martha Coley and two of her other children’s families come to visit a Neilson visitor?  Perhaps a sibling or sibling in law of Martha?  Who knows?  Hopefully some day I can find out and rewrite this post.

Here are the boys present on the occasion.

Golden, Art (holding Joy), Harold (CarolDean in front of him), Russell, Olof, and unknown boy

Golden, Art (holding Joy), Harold (CarolDean in front of him), Russell, Olof, unknown boy in front, and elusive honored guest

Here are the girls present on the occasion.

Mary (holding Joy), Shirley, Doreen, Unknown, Martha, Edna, Gloria

Mary (holding Joy), Shirley, Doreen, Unknown, Martha, Edna, Gloria

Since I presume these photos were all from Art and Mary’s camera, of course there is a picture with Mary and Joy.

Mary and Joy

Mary and Joy

One last picture of part of the elusive woman with Harold and his two children, Arlan and CarolDean.

Arlan, Harold, and CarolDean

Arlan, Harold, and CarolDean

Edna Coley Neilson

With the recent passing of Ivan Blaine Neilson, I decided to prepare a history for his mother Edna Coley Neilson.  Especially since I just recently came in possession of a number of new photographs of the family.  Some day I will write a history of her parents, my Great Great Grandparents, but I am hoping some more photos of them will appear in the upcoming months.

Edna Coley was born 23 November 1900 in Lewiston, Cache, Utah.  She was the second of ten children, my Great Grandmother Lillian being the oldest, born to Martha Christiansen and Herbert Coley.

I don’t know much about Edna’s personality.  I have been told by numerous people that Edna was the preferred child of Martha and was often doted on to the the dismay of the siblings.  I don’t know that tells me much of her personality though.

Edna married Gerold Andrus (1903-1984) 17 April 1921 in Richmond, Cache, Utah.  The next month, 15 March 1921, Harold Christian Andrus was born.  Gerold and Edna were only married for a very short time, a shotgun wedding and a shotgun divorce.

Edna married Olof Alma Neilson (1891-1960) 23 July 1923 in Logan, Cache, Utah.  They were sealed 30 July 1924 in the Logan LDS Temple.  I don’t know if Harold was adopted legally or not, but Harold went by Harold Christian Neilson the rest of his life.  The only father he knew was Olof and Olof treated Harold as if he was his own son.

Olof and Edna would have what appears to be ten children together.  The records certainly show ten children, but I believe one of them is a duplicate, or mistakes in names leading to a duplicate child.  Nobody is alive to confirm either so I will list all ten but point out where I believe the duplication exists.

Alma Russell “Russell” Neilson born 23 Jun 1924 in Richmond.  He married Gloria May Olson on 9 Oct 1946 in the Salt Lake City LDS Temple.

Olga Helen “Helen” Neilson born 28 July 1926 in Richmond.  She married LeRoy “Roy” Hulse Draper 25 May 1943.

Olof and Edna, Harold, Helen, and Russell Neilson

Olof and Edna, Harold, Russell, and Helen Neilson (14 May 1927)

To Lillian and Joe, when she was 10 months old.

To Lillian and Joe, when she (Helen) was 10 months old

Olof and Edna Neilson holding Russell

Olof and Edna Neilson holding Russell

Martbamary Neilson born and died 2 July 1927 in Richmond.  He does not have a tombstone if he is buried in Richmond.

Hebert Neilson born 25 November 1928 and died 26 November 1928 both in Richmond.  He has a tombstone in Richmond.

Aenotta Neilson born and died 1 September 1929 in Richmond.  This and the next child were either twins or just variations on a name.  Only a documentation exists for the next child.

Jennetta Neilson was born 1 September 1929 and died 2 September 1929 in Richmond.  Jennetta also has a tombstone where Aenotta does not, you would expect Aenotta would since they were supposedly twins.

Ole Neilson was born and died 19 October 1932 in Richmond.  He was buried 20 October 1932 in the Richmond Cemetery and has a tombstone.

Russell Neilson

Russell Neilson

Ivan Blaine Neilson was born 26 April 1935 in Richmond.  He died 16 January 2013 in Yuma, Yuma, Arizona.  He was buried 25 January 2013 in Smithfield, Cache, Utah.  He married Gloria Gilgen 8 June 1954 in Salt Lake City, Salt Lake, Utah.  They were later divorced.  He remarried to Rebecca Anne Pitcher 4 September 1981 in Smithfield.

Ivan Blaine Neilson

Ivan Blaine Neilson

Lastly, Martha Mary Neilson was born and died 6 July 1937 in Richmond.  She is buried in Richmond.

Lillian, Edna, Martha (sitting) Coley in the 1940's

Lillian, Edna, Martha (sitting) Coley in the 1940’s

Russell Neilson

Russell Neilson

Harold Christian Neilson

Harold Christian Neilson

Nelen Neilson

Helen Neilson

Russell and Gloria Neilson

Russell and Gloria Neilson

1955 Coley Reunion, Richmond, Utah

1955 Coley Reunion, Richmond, Utah

I named the people in the reunion photo here.

Olof passed away of a heart attack at about 9:30 am 13 April 1960 at home in Richmond.  He died almost instantly.  He was buried in Richmond on 15 April 1960.

Edna’s mother passed away 14 August 1961.  The family gathered for the funeral 17 August 1961 for the funeral.  The photo below was taken that day in the Richmond Cemetery.

Art, Golden, Wilford, Roland, Lloyd, Edna, Hannah, Carrie, Lillian, Ivan Coley at their mother’s funeral in 1961

Edna, Will Thomson, Lillian

Edna, Will Thomson, Lillian in the mid 1960’s

Edna lived close to her sister, Lillian Jonas, now Bowcutt, and Lillian makes regular reference to Edna in her journals.  The thing that stands out to me is how close they were in that Edna would regularly aid or stay with Lillian.  Also, Lillian makes regular reference to Edna’s attending the temple in Logan.

Harold took his own life 9 March 1966 in Phoenix, Maricopa, Arizona.  His body was brought back to Richmond for burial.

Edna lived in Richmond until she passed away 6 April 1983 in Richmond.  Her funeral was held 9 April 1983.

Edna's funeral program

Edna’s funeral program

Navy Boys

Gordon Willis, L F Biggin, Arthur Coley

Arthur Coley, L F Biggin, Gordon Willis

This photo appeared in a number of photos I have been scanning.  Since there is additional information on the back of this photo that I do not particularly care to go through the effort to document elsewhere, I thought I would make it available here.

Arthur Christiansen Coley (1921-2004) is my Great Grandmother’s brother.  This photo was in his possession.

The back has written for Mr. Willis.  “Gordon P Willis, West Main St, Petersburg, Ind.”

I believe this is Gordon Prentice Willis (1919-1976), son of Walter and Ida Willis, husband of Thelma Willis.

The back has written for Mr. Briggin.  “L.F. Briggin, R. 5, Midland, Mich.”

This is Lawrence Frederick Briggin (1924-still alive), son of Thomas and Henrietta Briggin, husband of Billie Briggin.  I visited with his daughter-in-law Muriel Briggin who I e-mailed a copy of the photo.  She confirmed this was Lawrence Briggin and he is still alive in Midland, Michigan.

Bruderer

With a third photo identified with a Bruderer in it, I thought I would make these photos available.  From my understanding, the Bruderers were good friends of my grandparents, Norwood and Colleen (Andra) Jonas, when they lived in Richmond, Cache, Utah.  When my grandparents moved to Burley, Cassia, Idaho in 1968 the friends did not see each other as much.  Leonard and Donna (Andrus) Bruderer also eventually moved to Brigham City, Box Elder, Utah.  Leonard and Donna also lived next door to my Great Grandma Lillian Coley Jonas (Edna’s sister)(and across the street from the Dorney family).

I visited with Donna in 2007.  She is an Andrus and her father is Gerald Andrus(1903-1984).  Gerald married my Great Grand Aunt Edna Coley(1900-1983) on 17 April 1921 and had a son, Harold Christian Andrus(1921-1966).  Harold is my cousin and is an Andrus although raised as a Neilson.  Gerald and Edna were married less than a year or so and he remarried to Donna’s mother, Ida Christena Smith, in 1923.  Harold is Donna’s half-brother and I called to visit with her more regarding Harold than the Bruderer line.  I did mention I had a photo of Leonard and Donna from many years ago as well as a photo of their daughter Lola.  Leonard Bruderer passed away in 2006 (born in 1922).

(l-r): Sandy Jonas, Lola Bruderer, and Jane Robinson in August 1958

(l-r): Sandy Jonas, Lola Bruderer, and Jane Robinson in August 1958

Leonard Bruderer and Norwood Jonas

Leonard Bruderer and Norwood Jonas

Donna and Leonard Bruderer

Donna and Leonard Bruderer

Clara McMurdie Coley

With the passing of Clara Coley this week, I thought I would put together a quick little history with the photos I have of her.  A good portion of this is written around Clara’s obituary.  I have an autobiography of Ivan so I will create a separate post for him in the future.

Clara McMurdie was born 26 January 1914 in Paradise, Cache, Utah with a twin brother Clarance (1914-1919).  She was one of 11 children born to Sarah Amelia Checketts and Joseph Kay McMurdie.  She grew up in Cache Valley and her family moved to Richmond, Cache, Utah when she was a few years old.  It was while they lived in Richmond that she met Ivan Coley who was a few years older than her.  Clarance died and is buried in Richmond.  Her family moved to Buhl, Twin Falls, Idaho in 1928.

Joseph and Sarah McMurdie in 1960

Joseph and Sarah McMurdie in 1960

Ivan hitchhiked all the way from Utah to Idaho to be with Clara after her family moved to Buhl.  They were married 22 October 1930 in Buhl.  After marriage, they moved and lived at the Coley Ranch in Richmond.  They were later sealed 10 February 1932 in the Logan LDS Temple.  An interesting side note, the great grandson of the Bishop who married them presided as the Bishop over Clara’s funeral.

Ivan Coley and dog

Ivan Coley and dog

Ivan and Clara moved back to Buhl and survived the Great Depression there.  They purchased a 160 acre farm in Melon Valley in Buhl.  That farm was sold in 1961 and they purchased five acres just outside of Buhl and kept that property for 36 years.

Joseph McMurdie, Clara, RaNae (Cookie), and Ivan Coley about about 1964

Joseph McMurdie, Clara, RaNae (Cookie), and Ivan Coley about about 1964

I have in my records that there were five children born to Ivan and Clara although the obituary only has 4 listed.  I will have to determine which is correct.

Sarah Colleen Coley born in 1932 in Richmond.

An unnamed son was born 12 February 1934 in Buhl.  He died the same day.  If I understood it correctly, this little boy was stillborn.  Apparently he is buried on the McMurdie Farm in Buhl.  I wonder if the present owner is aware of the grave or if it is marked?

Lorus Ivan Coley (“Bud) was born 1 August 1936 in Buhl.  He died 23 October 1962 while on a hunting trip down near the Nevada border.  Initially reported to me as an hunting accident, I later learned it appears to have been a murder framed to appear as a suicide.  Apparently there is an open investigation ongoing at this time on this matter.  I will be interested to learn the outcome of the matter.

Clara, Colleen, and Bud

Clara, Colleen, and Bud

I was told there was an unnamed son born in 1938 who also died the same day who was stillborn.  I do not have an exact date for this one so I suppose what makes me question it is that Clara’s obituary does not mention him.  I will have to find out more from the family.

In 1942, Ivan’s father Herbert came to visit for part of the summer.  At Ivan and Clara’s home near the well, he fell and broke his hip.  This injury would lead to his death in September.

Lastly, Clarene RaNae Coley born in 1947 in Buhl.

Bud and RaNae

Bud and RaNae

Danny Todd, Ivan, Bud, and RaNae Coley

Danny Todd, Ivan, Bud, and RaNae Coley

Clara at a Coley Reunion in 1955

Clara at a Coley Reunion in 1955

Clara dedicated her life to love and care for her family and friends.  Even into her late 60’s she was known to outrun her grandchildren.  Ivan and Clara dedicated their lives to their grandchildren.  Grandchildren often spent many nights, or even weeks, on the farm.  Clara loved to quilt and made beautiful blankets.  She also made rugs from all the fabric scraps.  She was left-handed.  She worked at a number of jobs including bus driver.

Ivan and Art Coley (brothers) with Clara and Mary (Art's wife) in the mid 80's

Ivan and Art Coley (brothers) with Clara and Mary (Art’s wife) in the mid 80’s

Clara and Ivan in the early 80's

Clara and Ivan in the early 80’s

Ivan and Clara celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary in 1990.  It is about this time that I have my first memory visiting Ivan and Clara with my grandmother Colleen Jonas (technically a niece-in-law).

60th Wedding Announcement

60th Wedding Announcement

Cutting the cake at their 60th anniversary party

Cutting the cake at their 60th anniversary party

Here is a photo from May 2012.  She was 98 years old and looked to be in great shape and pretty classy.  I visited with her about this same time and she identified a number of individuals in photographs for me and still had a sense of humor.

Clara Coley May 2012

Clara Coley May 2012

Clara passed away on Christmas Day 2012 at the St. Lukes Regional Hospital in Twin Falls.  Her funeral was held 4 January 2012 in Buhl with the burial between her husband and son in the West End, Buhl, Idaho cemetery.

Clara Coley Funeral Program

Clara Coley Funeral Program

Postcard from Howard Bair

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Another of those random posts.  To anyone who is not family of Lillian Coley or Howard Bair, this would be something worth throwing in the garbage.  But to the Coley and Bair families, it adds an interesting twist to the life of these individuals.  A sort of voice from the dust.

I have written of Lillian Coley elsewhere and of her life.  Howard Francis Bair was born 25 June 1898 in Richmond, Cache, Utah and died 9 March 1974 in San Diego, San Diego, California.  They were probably the same year in school growing up.

The card is posted 11 September 1915 in Willard, Box Elder, Utah and says the following: “Miss Lillian Colley (sic), Richmond, Utah.  Well Kid How is the world treating you By this time.  I am working in Willard or you going to school this year.  This rain is shore hell I dont think you can read this.  But you can try this is all for this one from Howard Bair.”

On the side above the pre-printed “N. Lovers Series” Howard writes “am soon”  It may just be coincidence it is written above the writing, but I have no idea what it would mean otherwise, but who really knows what this meant 100 years ago.

Postcard from Thatcher

This post card has no value to anyone besides family, but because it has Joseph Jonas’ signature and handwriting I thought I would make it available.  Some of the information I referenced in the article I wrote on Joseph and Lillian Jonas.

Joseph and two siblings had just purchased some land near Thatcher, Idaho in Cleveland, Idaho.  While they got the farm up and running his wife, Lillian Coley Jonas, stayed behind in Richmond, Utah to deliver a son.  She joined him that fall in Cleveland.

Postcard from Joseph Jonas to his wife, Lillian Coley Jonas.

Postcard from Joseph Jonas to his wife, Lillian Coley Jonas.

“I reached Thatcher Monday 4 o’clock, 2 hrs. ago.  Cows stood it fine.  Write to tell me how you are making it.  From your liveing husband Jos. Jonas.”