Freaky Friday’s ~ It Was Murder!

Freaked Out Letters Funny A Little Crazy Word

If you have read any of my blogs you know by now that I was not raised around my relatives. I had 2 years of my life where I lived near them and got meet and get to know a few of them. One set of relatives was my Dad’s youngest sisters’ family. Her oldest son was already married so I didn’t get to see him very often. The next son, Darrell was a few months younger than I, and we became fast friends. Her youngest child, a young girl was a late in life surprise for my Aunt and her husband. She was born when my Aunt was 44 years, quite old for the early 1960s! Her name was Madonna Rose, and she was quite a handful! I was 9 years older than her and at the time I wasn’t used to having young kids around.

When we moved away from Missouri and made California our home Aunt Margaret for blog olderwe were cut off from all family by my mother and her mental illness. For 5 years we had no contact. When my Dad was diagnosed with lung cancer I went behind my mother’s back and contacted my Aunt. She and Dad had always been very close. When we knew my Dads’ time was short, I invited my Aunt to come to visit. She did and they had a great time catching up. Of course, I had to pay the penalty for my actions after she left.

Fast-forward about 30 years. When I had begun my genealogy journey,Madonna age 6 I concentrated on finding my “older” ancestors and didn’t even think of trying to find the living ones. About 10 years ago I was searching through Facebook for people who lived in the small town in Missouri that my Aunt had lived. I saw that one of my Aunt’s granddaughters had an account, so I contacted her. We became “friends” and we exchanged information on our families. I was heartbroken to discover that my Aunt and Uncle had passed away. But I wasn’t prepared for the news that Madonna Rose had died 9 years before. My cousin began to tell me the story of what had happened.

Madonna had graduated from High School and got married. She had a palmer 3 generations 1987son and after a few years, the marriage ended. She remarried and soon had a little girl. 9 years later Madonna was told she had colon cancer, and she had surgery. Her prognosis was very good and was told with chemo she should have an excellent chance of beating it. She was a fighter and did everything she was told, however, her condition began to decline. On August 21, 2001, at the age of 37, she lost her hard-fought battle.

You may ask why is this blog called “It was murder” when she died from this horrible disease? Here is the rest of the story……

In 1990 Robert Ray Courtney, a pharmacist in Kansas City, Missouri began purchasing pharmaceuticals on the gray market and using them to fill prescriptions at his pharmacy. In time he began diluting prescriptions to increase profits. In 1998 an Eli Lilly sales representative noticed Courtney was selling three times the amount of the cancer drug Gemzar than he’d bought. Lilly initiated an internal investigation but found no evidence of illegality and closed the investigation without further action. In early 2001, this representative voiced his concerns to a nurse who worked for Dr. Verda Hunter, an oncologist in Courtney’s building, who was also one of Courtney’s customers. Hunter noticed that many of her patients were only suffering mild side effects, and their condition didn’t seem to be improving. Hunter had medication that had been supplied by Courtney tested. That test showed that the sample contained less than one-third of the drug prescribed, and upon receiving the test results back, Hunter immediately notified the FBI. Hunter submitted seven additional samples for testing by the FDA’s forensic chemistry lab. Tests on those samples revealed that they contained as little as 15 percent of the prescribed dosage, and at most only half of it. They immediately knew that they had to move quickly. While health care fraud cases normally take years to build, the investigators knew they didn’t have that long.

Investigators persuaded Hunter to help them in a sting operation. Hunter gave Courtney several prescriptions for fictitious patients. After Courtney mixed the drugs and sent them to Hunter’s office, federal agents had them tested. The samples contained less than half of the prescribed dosage, and in some cases contained less than one percent of the active drug. On August 13, 2001, federal agents raided Research Medical Tower Pharmacy. A day later, Courtney surrendered to authorities and was charged with one count of adulterating and misbranding medication.

In 2002, after initially being caught diluting several doses of chemotherapy drugs, he pleaded guilty to intentionally diluting 98,000 prescriptions involving multiple types of drugs, which were given to 4,200 patients, and was sentenced to 30 years in federal prison. He is currently serving his sentence Littleton, Colorado.

Madonnas hsMy cousin, Madonna was one of the 4,200 patients who had received this diluted drug and she was not given the chance to effectively fight for her life. It was murder!

 

 

 

I am a professional genealogist, writer, photographer, wife, mother, and grandma. I have two books available on Amazon.com: Your Family History: Doing It Right the First Time and Planning Your Genealogy Research Trip. You can also connect with me via Facebook or Twitter

Thursday at the Cemetery ~ Page Cemetery, Page City, Lafayette County, Missouri #4

pic TATCFour weeks ago, I wrote about how to honor our ancestors who do not have a headstone on their grave. This Cemetery is the one that prompted my query. This is an old, abandoned, neglected Cemetery in Missouri. As a matter of fact. the town no longer exists. It has been incorporated into a town a few miles away and all that is left of the original are farms and the Cemetery.

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The last burial in this Cemetery was in 1925. There are only 23 graves there and of those, 19 are related to me. This is the last one in this series.

 

SONY DSCEugene Webb Page, my first cousin 4x removed, was born in April 1868. He is the only child born to William A. (1836-1902) and Margaret F. (Hillock) Page (1846-1868).  He died on December 8, 1868, in Page City at the age of 8 months.

 

 

 

Sophia Page dau Granville Page esqSophia R. Page, my first cousin 4x removed, was born May 1, 1879. She is the 8th and last child born to Granville R. (1816-1894) and Lucinda F. (Johnson) Page (1830-1925). She died on May 1, 1879, at the age of 8 years old.

 

 

thomas hunt page HSThomas Hunt Page, my first cousin 4x removed, was born September 4, 1854. He is the 11th of 13 children born to Joseph Henry (1813-1893) and Elizabeth (Couts) Page (1819-1906). He married Emma Taylor (1853-1921) on September 4, 1884, in Buchanan County, Missouri. They had 3 children 1 son, and 2 daughters. He was a farmer. He died on April 5. 1925 at the age of 72, He was the last person buried in the Page City Cemetery.

 

I am a professional genealogist, writer, photographer, wife, mother, and grandma. I have two books available on Amazon.com: Your Family History: Doing It Right the First Time and Planning Your Genealogy Research Trip. You can also connect with me via Facebook or Twitter.

 

Thursday at the Cemetery ~ Page Cemetery, Page City, Lafayette County, Missouri #3

pic TATCThree weeks ago, I wrote about how to honor our ancestors who do not have a headstone on their grave. This Cemetery is the one that prompted my query. This is an old, abandoned, neglected Cemetery in Missouri. As a matter of fact. the town no longer exists. It has been incorporated into a town a few miles away and all that is left of the original are farms and the Cemetery.

 

The last burial in this Cemetery was in 1925. There are only 23 graves there and of those, 19 are related to me. I will spend the next few weeks honoring each one of them.

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Notice in newspaperJoseph Henry Page Jr., my first cousin 4x removed, was born in 1843. He is the 5th of 13 children born to Joseph Henry (1813-1898) and Elizabeth (Coats) Page (1819-1906). Joseph was a farmer and a blacksmith by trade. He served in the Civil War in the Confederate Army beginning in 1863 at the age of 21. After the war, he married Elizabeth Jane Petticord (1847-1894) on August 30, 1865, in Lafayette County. They had 6 children, 4 sons, and 2 daughters. He died on January 8, 1910, in Page City at the age of 67.

 

SONY DSCElizabeth Jane Petticord, the wife of Joseph Henry Page Jr, was born on July 23, 1847, in Lafayette County, Missouri. She and Joseph got married on August 30, 1865, in Lafayette County. They had 6 children, 4 sons, and 2 daughters. She died in Page City on February 14, 1894, at the age of 47.

 

 

SONY DSCJames Henry Page, my second cousin 3x removed, was born on June 1, 1868, in Page City, Lafayette County, Missouri. He was the second of 6 children born to Joseph Henry (1843-1910) and Elizabeth Jane (Petticord) Page (1847-1894). James died on April 12, 1870, at the age of 22 months. Only half of his headstone could be found.

 

find a graveJessie J Page, my first cousin 4x removed, was born on March 20,1849, in Lafayette County, Missouri. He is the 8th of 13 children born to Joseph Henry (1813-1898) and Elizabeth (Coats) Page (1819-1906). Jessie was a very successful farmer. He lived his entire life in Page City. He never got married. He died on February 3, 1909, in Page City at the age of 59.

 

SONY DSCMary Elizabeth Page, my first cousin 4x removed, was born on February 3, 1948, in Page City, Lafayette County, Missouri. She was the 5th of 5 children born to Granville R. (1816-1894) and his first wife Mary (Ridge) Page (1818-1850). Mary never married but she was the beloved Aunt of numerous nieces and nephews. Mary was killed when she was hit by a car crossing the road in Higginsville, Lafayette County, Missouri on May 15, 1920, at the age of 72. She is buried in the Page Cemetery.

 

 

I am a professional genealogist, writer, photographer, wife, mother, and grandma. I have two books available on Amazon.com: Your Family History: Doing It Right the First Time and Planning Your Genealogy Research Trip. You can also connect with me via Facebook or Twitter.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thursday at the Cemetery ~ High Point Cemetery ~ Hughesville, Pettis Co, MO Part 5

pic TATCI just completed a 4-week look at a cemetery in Lexington, MO where many of my ancestors are buried. I decided I would do the same with High Point Cemetery because, once again, I have a multitude of relatives buried here. High Point Cemetery was established in 1870. This plot of land was organized as the First Old School Presbyterian Church in Pettis County in 1856 the congregation built a 60’x40’ brick church on this site. It cost between 4 & 5,000 dollars to build. The church was divided by the civil war and the building was demolished in 1877. All that is left of the building is the cement foundation. The cemetery surrounds the foundation.

Hugh Point Cem

For the next few weeks, I will be highlighting a few of my ancestor’s headstone and give a little biography about each one.

 

 

Robert Lee Spratley HSRobert Lee Spratley, my 2nd cousin, is the son of James B. (1892-1966) and Ethyl (1902-1933), Hughes Spratley. He was their firstborn child born on September 27, 1921, in Sedalia, Pettis County, Missouri. He had 2 sisters and 2 brothers. At a young age, Robert along with his 2 younger brothers were playing down by a creek. Dewey, his youngest brother fell into the water, and Robert jumped in to help him. After getting Dewey out of the water, Robert slipped and fell back into the water hitting his head. By the time he reached home, he was incoherent and confused. The doctors of that time didn’t know what to do so he was declared an invalid and he was never able to work or go back to school and he never got married nor had children. Robert died on December 2, 1995, in Kansas City, Missouri at the age of 74.

 

Allie Mae Spratley HSAllie Mae Spratley, my 2nd cousin, is the firstborn daughter of James B. (1892-1966) and Ethyl (1902-1933), Hughes Spratley.  She was born in 1924 in Sedalia, Pettis County, Missouri. She had 2 brothers. Allie died in 1926 at the age of 2. No death certificate has been found and we do not know the cause of death.

 

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAJames Alfred Spratley, my 2nd cousin, is the 2nd son of James B. (1892-1966) and Ethyl (1902-1933), Hughes Spratley. He was born June 6, 1926, in Sedalia, Pettis County, Missouri. He had 2 sisters and 2 brothers. James married Julia Kathryn Riley on November 6, 1954, n Sedalia. James was employed as a Farm Hand. James died on June 17, 1991, in Fulton, Callaway County, Missouri at the age of 66.

 

Dewey Spratley HSDewey Egbert Spratley, my 2nd cousin, is the 3rd and last son of James B. (1892-1966) and Ethyl (1902-1933) Hughes Spratley. He was born on November 6, 1927, in Sedalia, Pettis County, Missouri. At the age of 18, he was living and working at the Bothwell Hotel in Sedalia. It was/is a very upscale hotel. On January 18, 1947, at the age of 19 Dewey enlisted as a single man with a grammar school education in the Army Corp of Engineers. The enlistment was done through Fort Leavenworth, Kansas with the 7803 Station Compliance Unit. He was then shipped off to fight in the War. On June 1, 1947, he was killed in action in Germany at the age of 19.

 

 

I am a professional genealogist, writer, photographer, wife, mother, and grandma. I have two books available on Amazon.com: Your Family History: Doing It Right the First Time and Planning Your Genealogy Research Trip. You can also connect with me via Facebook or Twitter.

Thursday at the Cemetery ~ High Point Cemetery ~ Hughesville, Pettis Co, MO Part 4

I just completed a 4-week look at a cemetery in Lexington, MO where many of my ancestors are buried. I decided I would do the same with High Point Cemetery because, once again, I have a multitude of relatives buried here. High Point Cemetery was established in 1870. This plot of land was organized as the First Old School Presbyterian Church in Pettis County in 1856 the congregation built a 60’x40’ brick church on this site. It cost between 4 & 5,000 dollars to build. The church was divided by the civil war and the building was demolished in 1877. All that is left of the building is the cement foundation. The cemetery surrounds the foundation.

 For the next few weeks, I will be highlighting a few of my ancestor’s headstone and give a little biography about each one.

 

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAMildred Maude Hughes, my 1st cousin, was born on June 7, 1885 in Malta Bend, Pettis County, Missouri. She was the second child of Henry Siegel and Myrtle (Joslin) Hughes. On July 29, 1906 she married Elmer L. Schrader (1885-1951) in Pettis County, Missouri. They had 6 sons. Mildred died during surgery on August 8, 1944 at the age of 59. She had lived in Sedalia for 40 years.

 

 

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERATherman Theodore Hughes, my 1st cousin, was born on February 8, 1908 in Hughesville, Pettis County, Missouri. He was the 5th son and the last of 11 children born to Henry Siegel and Myrtle (Joslin) Hughes. His father died when he was 2 years old. He worked in a Lab in Sedalia and lived with his widowed mother until joining the service. Therman served as a Private in the Medical Detachment in the Army. He enlisted on November 6, 1942 and he did his training at Camp Polk in Louisiana. He was honorably discharged in July 1944. He was never married.

 

 

ethel spratley HSEthyl N Hughes, my 1st cousin, was born on May 14, 1902 in Zora, Benton County, Missouri. She was the 10th child born to Henry Siegel and Myrtle (Joslin) Hughes. She married James Spratley (1892-1966) on December 9, 1920 in Sedalia. They had 2 daughters and 3 sons. She died suddenly on August 11, 1933 of acute Nephritis. She was 31 years old.

 

 

Virginia J G+Hughes CasteelVirginia J Hughes, my 2nd cousin, was born on August 18, 1935 in Sedalia, Pettis County, Missouri. She was the 6th child born to Roy Lee and Sallie (Anthony) Hughes. She married Ora J Casteel (1903-1989) who was 32 years older than her in 1956. They had one son, Dennis James CasteelDennis James Casteel HS who was born on September 22, 1860, and died April 26, 1962 at the age of 18 months. He died of pneumonia. Virginia died on October 6, 2002 in Sedalia, at the age of 67.

 

 

I am a professional genealogist, writer, photographer, wife, mother, and grandma. I have two books available on Amazon.com: Your Family History: Doing It Right the First Time and Planning Your Genealogy Research Trip. You can also connect with me via Facebook or Twitter.

 

 

 

Tombstone ~ 52 Ancestors 52 Weeks ~ #21

SONY DSCSince January of this year I have been writing a weekly blog called “Thursday at the Cemetery”, and my first thought was, “I have tons of tombstones saved, this should be easy!”. Then I realized, I needed all those photos for future blogs, “insert sad face here!” So, I decided to go in a different direction.

I have always loved cemeteries, especially old ones with all the ancient stones that seemed to have some character to them. Growing up my family would visit the local Cemetery at least once a month, taking flowers or potted plants for the people we knew. My Mom would even pack a picnic lunch and we would sit on wooden benches in one section of the grounds and eat our sandwiches. I thought this is what everyone did and as a result, I never developed a “fear” of Cemeteries.

Obviously taking pictures of Headstones for “Find-a-Grave” came naturally for me. I find a gravehave taken 1000s of photos since I first started doing it 6 years ago. My daughter and two Grandsons often accompany me and the boys tend to ask a lot of questions. “Why does that one have a tree on it?” “Do all Cemeteries have grass like this?” “How come that one is completely covered with cement?”

To be honest, they have asked some questions that I didn’t have an answer for, so I had to spend some time researching. As I was looking for answers to their questions I even came up with some facts I had often wondered about myself. Here are some of the interesting facts that I discovered:

1. Before the 19th Century, there were no actual Graveyards. Most people were buried on Church_Building_and_Cemeterytheir family property or just outside the town limits. Later they began to bury people in the Churchyard which were usually fenced in and they felt very desolate. By the mid 19th Century most Churchyards were getting full and more people were living in larger towns. As a result, they began setting aside land specifically for Cemeteries. These were well maintained and had grass, trees, and flowers giving it a “park-like” feel. It was then that people began the tradition of picnicking in the Cemetery.

2. Up until the 18th Century, a lot of graves were covered by iron cages called “mortsafes”mortsafe or were totally covered with stones. There are 4 reasons given for this tradition:

* To keep animals from digging up the corpse

* To keep people from walking or sitting on the graves

* To keep the deceased from becoming a vampire or zombie

* To keep the grave from being ravaged by grave robbers.

3. Headstone engravers faced their own “Y2K problem” when still-living people, as many as 500,000 in the United States alone, pre-purchased headstones with pre-carved death dates beginning 19–.

wooden HS4. During the Civil War, the headstones were made of wood and cost about $1.73 apiece. After discovering that the wood deteriorated over a 5 year period and realizing how much it would cost to replace them so often they decided that they should be replaced with a more permanent marble or galvanized iron marker.

5. Arlington Cemetery began as a Cemetery for Union Soldiers only. In 1898, Presidentarlington William McKinley, a former Union soldier, spoke in Atlanta, Georgia, and said, “In the spirit of Fraternity it is time for the North to share in the care of the graves of former Confederate soldiers.” In consequence of his speech, by an act of the United States Congress, a portion of Arlington National Cemetery was set aside for the burial of Confederate soldiers. At this time 267 Confederate remains from and near Washington, DC was removed and re-interred at this new site at Arlington

6. There are several reasons that there are many unmarked graves:

* If the deceased was a bad person.

* If the deceased was an executed criminal.

*If the deceased was a pauper.

* If the deceased wanted anonymity.

skull-and-crossbones7. Puritans who were known for their tremendous piety, often had that Skull and Crossbones put on their Headstones. It was a reminder that they had gone to Heaven but if you did not believe as they did you would go to hell. It was called a “Memento Mori” which is Latin for “Remember that you will die”.

8. Many famous people made the decision to be buried in unmarked graves for a variety of reasons. Among those who chose no markings are John Wayne, George C. Scott, Frank Zappa, Roy Orbison, Mozart, Bessie Smith, and John Belushi.

9. You can learn a lot about the deceased by the symbols displayed on their Headstone. symbol_bird_gravestoneDuring Colonial times the person’s occupation was depicted by symbols. A gardener may have a shovel or rake, a carpenter may have a saw and a sheriff may have a star. There were also symbols for those who died young, mothers, lost their lives in a battle, or who were martyred.

Regardless of how a person feels about Cemeteries and burial plots, it would be impossible to work on your Family History without having to deal with them.

OH, BY THE WAY…..I haven’t “picnicked” in a Cemetery since I was 12 years old!

 

I am a professional genealogist, writer, photographer, wife, mother, and grandma. I have two books available on Amazon.com: Your Family History: Doing It Right the First Time and Planning Your Genealogy Research Trip. You can also connect with me via Facebook or Twitter.

Thursday at the Cemetery ~ High Point Cemetery ~ Hughesville, Pettis Co, MO Part 2

pic TATCI just completed a 4-week look at a cemetery in Lexington, MO where many of my ancestors are buried. I decided I would do the same with High Point Cemetery because, once again, I have a multitude of relatives buried here. High Point Cemetery was established in 1870.Hugh Point Cem sign This plot of land was organized as the First Old School Presbyterian Church in Pettis County in 1856 the congregation built a 60’x40’ brick church on this site. It cost between 4 & 5,000 dollars to build. The church was divided by the civil war and the building was demolished in 1877. All that is left of the building is the cement foundation. The cemetery surrounds the foundation.

Hugh Point Cem

 For the next few weeks, I will be highlighting a few of my ancestor’s headstone and give a little biography about each one.

 

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Roy Lee Hughes, my 1st cousin once removed, was born on July 18, 1891, in Malta Bend, Missouri. He was the 5th child born to Henry Siegel (1862-1919) and Myrtle Stella (Joslin) (1864-1934) Hughes. Roy had 4 brothers and 6 sisters. He served in the Army during WWI. After returning home he married Sallie Sarah Anthony (1894-1972) on October 8, 1921, in Sedalia, Pettis Co., MO. They had 4 sons and 5 daughters. He worked as a laborer on the Railroads in 1920 and by 1930 he owned his own farm. In 1940 Roy was working at the local Rock Quarry as a rock breaker. Roy died at the age of 76 on September 24, 1968, in Kansas City, Jackson Co., MO at the Veterans Hospital, and was buried with his ancestors in High Point Cemetery.

 

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERASallie Sarah Anthony, my 1st cousin’s wife, was born on August 15, 1894 in Morgan Co., MO to Wallace and Mary (Stephenson) Anthony. They had a total of 9 children. Sallie died on July 14, 1972 at the age of 79. She and Roy had been married for 46 years.

 

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Lee Roy Hughes, my 2nd cousin, was born on March 19, 1928, in Houstonia, Pettis Co., MO. He was the 3rd child of 11 born to Roy Lee and Salle Sarah (Anthony) Hughes. He had 3 brothers and 5 sisters. He married Mildred Allene Goolder on April 24, 1946, in Sedalia, Missouri. He then married Doris Blystone on May 25, 1953, in Sedalia, Missouri. He then married Donna Mae Gully on August 28, 1960, in Jackson County, MO. He enlisted in the Army on May 27, 1948, and was released from duty on April 28, 1952. He served as a Corporal during the Korean War. No records have been found concerning children being born during any of his marriages. Lee died on June 3, 2010, at the Veterans Hospital in Kansas City, MO. He was 82 years old.

 

walter Hughes HS

Walter Wesley Hughes, my 2nd cousin was born on August 27, 1924, in Houstonia, Pettis Co., MO. He was the 2nd child of 11 born to Roy Lee and Salle Sarah (Anthony) Hughes. He had 3 brothers and 5 sisters. Walter died at the young age of 16 on October 4, 1840. On September 13 Walter fell from a moving tractor while in the fields. He broke his left arm at the elbow and received a deep cut on the upper part of the arm. Two weeks later he was admitted to the hospital in Marshall, MO. because the cut had become infected. He died one week later from “blood poisoning”.

 

I am a professional genealogist, writer, photographer, wife, mother, and grandma. I have two books available on Amazon.com: Your Family History: Doing It Right the First Time and Planning Your Genealogy Research Trip. You can also connect with me via Facebook or Twitter.

Thursday at the Cemetery ~ High Point Cemetery ~ Hughesville, Pettis Co, MO Part 1

pic TATCI just completed a 4-week look at a cemetery in Lexington, MO where many of my ancestors are buried. I decided I would do the same with High Point Cemetery because, once again, I have a multitude of relatives buried here. High Point Cemetery was established in 1870. This plot of land was organized as the Hugh Point Cem signFirst Old School Presbyterian Church in Pettis County in 1856 when the congregation built a 60’x40’ brick church on this site. It cost between 4 & 5,000 dollars to build. The church was divided by the civil war and the building was demolished in 1877. All that is left of the building is the cement foundation. The cemetery surrounds the foundation.

Hugh Point Cem

 For the next few weeks, I will be highlighting a few of my ancestor’s headstones that are found in High Point Cemetery, and give a little biography about each one.

 

Charley Hughes was born on December 20. 1868, in Henry, Benton County, Missouri. We are not sure of the year in which he was born because his Headstone says he was born in 1868, his death certificate says 1865, his daughter Margaret’s written genealogy says 1864, a page from the Hughes Family Bible says 1861 and my baby book family tree says he was born in 1867. Charley first married Clara Braden (1880-1903) on March 25, 1900, and they had a daughter and a son. After Clara died, he married Virginia Belle Hayes on January 28, 1904. They had 9 children, 5 sons, and 4 daughters. Charley was a farmer and a horse trainer. He raised prize-winning horses. He passed away on October 11, 1844.

Charley and Virginia Hughes HS

Virginia Belle Hayes was born March 18, 1880, in Pleasant Hill. Cass County, Missouri. She was the oldest of 9 children. She married Charley Hughes on January 28, 1904, in Cole Camp, Missouri. She took great care of her widowed husbands’ 2 children while going on to have 9 of her own. Two of her youngest boys died within a year of their birth. She outlived Charley by 7 years passing away on December 15, 1951.

 

 Henry Siegel Hughes was born on July 22, 1862, in Windsor, Henry County, Missouri. He is one of Charley Hughes’ older brothers. Henry married Myrta Stella Joslin (1864-1934) on March 5, 1882, in Sedalia, Pettis County, Missouri. They had 11 children, 5 sons, and 6 daughters. In the 1900 Census, his family is living Jefferson, Monroe County, Missouri and he owned his own farm. By 1910 the family had moved to Hughesville, Pettis County. Henry died on September 9, 1919, in Sedalia.

 

Henry Sigal and Myrta Hughes 

Myrta Stella Joslin was born on July 3, 1864, in New York State. Her family moved to Burns, Michigan when she was 6 years old. When she was 16 years old her family moved to Sedalia, Pettis County, Missouri. Here she met and married Henry Hughes on March 5, 1882. They had 11 children in a span of 24 years. After the death of her husband in 1919 she continued to love in Sedalia until her death on April 30, 1934.

 

I am a professional genealogist, writer, photographer, wife, mother, and grandma. I have two books available on Amazon.com: Your Family History: Doing It Right the First Time and Planning Your Genealogy Research Trip. You can also connect with me via Facebook or Twitter.

 

Freaky Friday’s ~  Once Upon A Murder

Freaky-Fridays-logo1-optimisedIn the early morning hours of Sunday, July 13, 1930, 21-year-old Virgil Bullard and his 3 brother-in-laws began a trip into town. Lexington Missouri was about 4 miles southwest of the farm they lived on. Traveling down the dirt road they soon passed by one of their neighbors’ farm and the owner, Irvan Menaugh came out to the road and stopped them. A few days earlier Virgil had borrowed a team of mules with a threshing outfit from Irvan. Along with the mules he also borrowed some new collars for a span of mules. He had returned them all the day before. Standing by the large wagon, Irvan began to accuse Virgil of swapping the new collars and harnesses with some old ones. Virgil stated that he had left the new collars in the wagon when he returned them all. “No, you didn’t,” Manaugh said. “There were two old collars in place of them, and besides you called my wife a b—- and I am going to kill you!” Irvan then pulled out his gun and fired one shot from the .38 caliber revolver. The bullet struck Virgil, penetrating the skull above his right eye. The 3 other men in the wagon, Mitchell Lee Willard aged 32, Leonard Hughes aged 17 and Douglas Hughes (my Dad) aged 15 tried to get Virgil into town to the Doctors as quickly as possible The Doctor tried to save him but he died a short time later.

It took the police 7 hours of hunting the Menaugh farm and the surrounding area to locate Irvan. They found him hiding in some bushes on his property. He was immediately arrested and was held on the charge of first-degree murder.

According to family stories, Charley Hughes, the father of 20-year-old Nellie Hughes Bullard, went down to the courthouse in Lexington with his shotgun and tried to get into the jail to kill Irvan. He was very distraught as Virgil had not only left behind a young wife but she was also pregnant. Because Charley was a well known and respected Horse and mule breeder and Horse Trainer in Lafayette County he was not arrested for his actions. Irvan Menaugh was found not guilty and was released.

This was a horrific event in our family history. All of my dad’s family disliked the Menaughs because of this. Not quite the Hatfield’s and McCoy’s, but the feud still rages on today.

About 10 years ago I met a cousin named Cathy from my mothers’ side. I was put in Lexington MO Signtouch with her about a month before my husband and I made a trip to Missouri. She was almost as excited to meet me as I was to meet her. Because of the very strained relation I always had with my mother, I had spent the first 11 years of my Genealogy journey only researching my dad’s side of the family. When we met, Cathy gave me a packet of the research she had on the McGowan side of the family. We had such a full schedule while in Missouri and a 36-hour drive back to Arizona, I didn’t have time to look at the information until after I got home.

Virgil DCImagine my surprise when I was entering all the information I had received into my Smith/McGowan tree and when I got to my cousins’ immediate family I came across the name Menaugh! Cathy’s mom had married the son of Irvan Menaugh after the death of her husband. Cathy had never heard this story so I emailed her the newspaper article. We both agreed that the fact that her step-grandfather had murdered my aunt’s husband was indeed quite FREAKY!

 

 

I am a professional genealogist, writer, photographer, wife, mother, and grandma. I have two books available on Amazon.com: Your Family History: Doing It Right the First Time and Planning Your Genealogy Research Trip. You can also connect with me via Facebook or Twitter.

 

Thursday at the Cemetery ~ Machpelah Cemetery pt. 2 ~ Lexington, Lafayette Co, MO

pic TATCMachpelah Cemetery was originally known as the Waddell Family Cemetery. The first burial there was in 1839. In 1849, William Bradford Waddell donated his family’s cemetery, along with other nearby lands, to form Machpelah.
During the Civil War, many soldiers from both sides of the Battle of Lexington were buried at Machpelah. There is also a special memorial to the victims of the Saluda steamboat explosion of April 9, 1952. The Saluda carried Mormon immigrants from England and Wales who were traveling to Utah. Some of the bodies from that disaster are buried in a mass grave at the cemetery.
Among the prominent citizens buried at Machpelah are Stephen Wentworth (founder of Wentworth Military Academy), Ike Skelton (representative to US. Congress and chairman of the Armed Services Committee), William Waddell (one of the founders and operators of the Pony Express), and Gilead Rupe (the first settler of the area).
Cemetery records date only to 1885 with no record of earlier burials. Many headstones of the earlier burials can still be found. Records from the years of 1920 thru 1940 were destroyed by a fire.
Just inside the south entrance is a kiosk with a database of burial locations.
 Among those mentioned above are several of my beloved family. Too many to feature in just one blog. So, over the next few weeks, I will post 4 or 5 headstones with a short bio of each person.

 Margaret Ruth Hughes was born on November 14, 1919, in Sweet Springs, Saline Co, MO. She died on November 26, 1988, in Buckner, Jackson Co, MO. She is my paternal aunt. She was the 10th child and the 5th daughter born to Charles Hughes and Virginia Hayes. She was married twice first to a sailor named Kenneth Smith with whom she had her 1st son. Her husband was shipped off to war and he never came home. Her 2nd husband was Paul Dwain Palmer. They had 2 sons and 1 daughter. Their 1st son died at the age of 7 months. She died from cancer at the age of 69. You may read about her incredible life here: https://wp.me/p4gvQU-wj

Margaret & Paul Palmer

Paul Douglas Palmer Sr was born on August 19, 1915, in Winona, Shannon Co, MO. He died on June 1, 1993, in Buckner, Jackson Co, MO. He worked for the Gulf Oil Corporation aboard the vessel “Gulfwave” as a fireman during WWII. After that, He worked for the Missouri State Highway Department until he retired in 1987. He loved the Kansas City Royals and he never missed a game. He died of a heart attack at the age of 78.

 

Paul Douglas Palmer JrPaul Douglas Palmer Jr was born on July 13, 1951, in Kansas City, Jackson Co, MO and died on February 19, 1952, from a viral infection and pneumonia.

 

 

 

Madonna Rose Palmer was born on January 1, 1964, in Kansas City, Jackson Co, MO. She died on August 21, 2001, in Higginsville, Lafayette Co, MO. She married twice 1st to Raymond Darnell and had a son. 2nd to John Anthony Bell and she had a daughter. She died of colon cancer at the age of 36.

Madonna & Darrell

Darrell Dwain Palmer was born on November 15, 1955, in Kansas City, Jackson Co, MO and died on June 24, 2016, in Kansas City, Jackson Co, MO. He never got married but he did have one daughter. He worked multiple jobs such as a truck driver, oil rigging, and too many other jobs to list. He died of brain cancer at the age of 61. BOTH MADONNA AND DARRELL WERE CREMATED AND PLACED ON TOP OF THEIR PARENTS.

 

I am a professional genealogist, writer, photographer, wife, mother, and grandma. I have two books available on Amazon.com: Your Family History: Doing It Right the First Time and Planning Your Genealogy Research Trip. You can also connect with me via Facebook or Twitter.