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John William Jarvis

John William Jarvis

Submitted & © John Lehr

June 9, 1880, Chase Co., Kansas Census. Page 8, line 21 Taledo Township. Jarvis, John W. WM31 Farmer Married in ILL Born in ILL
Catherine R. CHURCH WF 25 Wife Born in ILL
Census Place: Toledo, Chase Co, Kansas Source: FHL Film 1254375 National Archives Film T9-0375 Page 256D Relation Sex Marr Race Age Birthplace John W. JARVIS Self M W 31 IL Catharine JARVIS Wife F M W 28 IL Ora E. JARVIS Dau F S W 9 IL Loyal I. JARVIS Son M S W 6 KS William N. JARVIS Son M S W 4 KS Mack JARVIS Son M S W 2 KS Samuel N. CHURCH Bro L. M S W 22 IL Minerva A. CHURCH SisterL F S W 18 IL
McKinley Cemetery, From Guthrie go East on Hi way 105 to Luther road then one mile south, then one mile east, then back south again about one and one half miles. Cemetery is on the west side of the roadway.

Biography of A Pioneer Family

John William Jarvis & Catherine Ruth Church
By John Noah Lehr, a great grandson, revised September 16, 1999
John William Jarvis was born January 10, 1848 in Coles County Illinois to Moses Jarvis and Mariah Galbreath. John had three sisters and two brothers. John was born into a family of farmers. Moses and Mariah made their living farming the land south of Chicago Illinois. John's brother Garret Jarvis was born Abt. 1858 and died about 1859 an infant. John's sister, Polly Ann Jarvis, married John H. Bush on October 27, 1874 in Coles County Illinois. John's sister, Permelia Jane Jarvis married Benjamin F. Lauher on November 30, 1879 in Coles County Illinois. John's sister, Sara E. Jarvis, married Jacob Sheffer on November 7, 1883 in Coles County Illinois.
John's brother, James L. Ferman C. Jarvis "AKA. Firman" married Freelove Permelia Daugherty.
John courted Catherine Ruth Church who was born on January 3, 1852 in Coles County Illinois. John and Catherine were married by, an ordained minister, G.W. Montgomery in Coles County Illinois on April 8, 1869.
John and Catherine's first child, Cora Ellen, was born on February 18, 1870. Life and times were hard in the 1800's and Cora Ellen did not survive her first year, dying on December 8, 1870. She did not survive to make the migration to Kansas and was buried in Illinois.
Eight months after the death of their first child, the couple's second child, Ora Elva was born on August 7, 1871, in Coles County, Illinois. Ora Elva would survive to present John and Catherine with their first grandchild.
John & Catherine began looking to the West for a place to settle and raise their family. They packed up what possessions they had acquired and headed west.
John, Catherine and their daughter Ora Elva was part of a large wave of migrating settlers who moved west into Kansas. The flat prairie lands of Kansas had been open for settlement after the turn of the century. John and Catherine settled near Staffordville in Chase County Kansas with their young daughter seeking opportunity and good fortune from the untamed land of the Kansas prairie. Where they became busy clearing the land, planting crops, tending their stock, and preparing a place to raise their family. Catherine also had additional childcare chores to tend to while John was busy clearing more land. This was a never-ending chore John accepted, while caring for his crops and livestock. Both were kept very busy.
Then on December 26, 1873, in Chase County Kansas, Catherine gave birth to their first boy child. Loyal Irvin. John would now one day have a son to help him with his farming chores. A son to pass on, the farming heritage he so dearly loved. A little more than three years passed before Catherine gave birth to her second son, William Noah, He was born on February 5, 1876, in LaCross Kansas. Ora Elva was now five years old, and Loyal Irvin was three. It was a little more than two years after the birth of William when Catherine gave birth to a third son. Mack W. He was born on May 19, 1878 in Chase County Kansas. The family was clearing the land, farming, raising stock and growing in their habitat.
At the time of the 1880 Census in Taledo Township in Chase County Kansas we find Catherine's brother, Samuel N. Church (22yrs old) and his Sister, Manurva. A. (18yrs old) living in the household. They both listing Illinois as their place of birth, Then on June 30, 1880, a baby daughter, Mary Iva was born, she died the following Month on July 8, 1880. One year later to the day later, on July 8, 1881, Orval Russell was born in Chase County Kansas. Then approximately three years after his birth Anna Lillian was born on February 27, 1884. Approximately two years after Anna Lillian's birth, on February 8, 1886, Gertrude Methia was born in Toledo Kansas. By the time Gertrude was born in 1886, Ora Elva was a young lady of fourteen plus years of age. Loyal Irvin, the oldest son, was more than twelve years of age. William Noah was ten years old and Mack had passed his seventh birthday. Anna Lillian was now two years old. Ora Elva was doing a great deal of the baby-sitting with the younger children and the boys were learning the ways of farmers. The family was scratching their living from the soil of the Kansas Prairie. On October 1, 1888, Anna Lillian died, having survived only four years on the Kansas Prairie. Carl Wilburn was born seven days later October 8,1888, in Emporia Kansas. Times were harsh on the very young and the very old. On June 14, 1891, Edith May was born in Chase County Kansas.
The Oklahoma Territory had opened for settlement in 1889 and stories of cheap land available in the Indian Territory looked very promising to this Pioneer family. John and other family members made the run, however failing in obtaining a claim for a homestead John and some other family members returned to Kansas. Some of the family members (names not known by this writer) proceeded to Colorado in an attempt to obtain land.
John began feeling the urge to move onto greener pastures. So in the fall of 1892 John and Catherine packed up their family consisting of five sons and three daughters into four covered wagons. They made their way from Chase County Kansas to Guthrie, Oklahoma. They were looking for good fortune and better times than the Kansas Prairie seemed to offer.
Two more children, Anna Lillian, and Mary Iva had not survive the Kansas elements and were left behind, buried in the Kansas prairie.
The remaining living children making the migration to Oklahoma was Ora Elva now (twenty-one years of age), Loyal Irvin (nineteen years of age), William Noah (sixteen years of age). Mack W. (fourteen years of age), Orval Russell (eleven years of age), Gertrude Methia (six years of age), Carl Wilburn (four years of age), and Edith May (just one year old). The family set forth in four covered wagons. They carried the families life long accumulated possessions and supplies. They would need everything they could carry to start their life a-new in the Indian lands that seemed so promising. They led the extra horses behind the wagons. Upon arriving in Guthrie, John's family made their home in West Guthrie, purchasing lots (21) twenty-one, (22)twenty-two, (23)twenty-three and (24)twenty-four of block (l)one of West Guthrie. The family (Loyal +) tried their hands at running a rug factory in West Guthrie. John soon turned to what he knew best at earning a living for his family and returned to farming.
In March of 1893, John W. Jarvis purchased a farm in Section (2) two, Township (15) fifteen North, range (1) one East [NE of SE quarter]. This location being (2) two miles South and (5) miles East of Meridian. (NOTE: The legal description is on file at the Guthrie Logan County Court House—directions to the homestead were given to me by by my Aunt Anna (Jarvis) Stevens. The farm improvements consisted of a one room farm house with a basement; a dug well; an old shed; and a small piece of land broke with a plow: Household water had to be carried a distance of approximately three city blocks. The family cleared underbrush and small trees, then when they cut enough trees to be sawed into lumber John had Dan Wise and John Bardow move in their sawmill. John found a large cotton wood tree that was hollow all the way to the top. Family members pilled up the underbrush and small trees they had cleared around this hollow tree. They pilled this underbrush up as high as they possible could.
Then on one still night they burned it all. The hollow tree served as a draft suction for the fire making it very hot and bright. Neighbors saw the fire for many miles around. This became a much talked of event in the fanning community near Shiloh. Many neighbors came to see what was on fire.
The timber cut from the homestead included native black walnut, which was sawed into lumber. This native black walnut lumber was used for improvements to the homestead, barter with neighbors, and improvements on the home in Guthrie.
Elva Ora married Charles N. Christ on June 7, 1894 at the home of Judge Fallis. Ora Elva was twenty-three (23) years old at the time of her wedding. Charlie and his parents had come to Oklahoma in 1893 and had bought homesteads from their original claimants. Their homestead was just North of John & Catherine’s farm. They named the town of Fallis where Charles Christ and Elva Ora were married after Judge Fallis. The Jarvis family grew in number and family members inhabited much of the farmland in the community.
Family members also made their homes in towns such as Guthrie, Edmond, Perkins, Goodnight, Fallis, Meridian, Luther, Shiloh, Cushing, Perry and Chandler.
Gertie Jarvis Smith (Gertrude Methia) told, in an article published by the Guthrie Daily Leader, that in 1894, her father, John W. Jarvis, helping in the building of the first McKinley school house. Gertie stated that a couple of years later the School District was divided again. Family members again had to attend school in a dwelling house until the Willard School was completed. She told of receiving their mail at the McKinley Post Office.
On July 29, 1894, Charles Franklin was born in Guthrie Oklahoma. That same year Loyal Irvin married Ada Mary Bradbury in Meridian Oklahoma on December 27, 1894. Gertie stated that her father bought a sorghum mill and made sorghum for the family and other neighbors who had cane. She told of her father trying to break more ground with the horses but that the ground was too hard. Gertie stated her father then bought an ox team to break up their land and he broke up land belonging to neighbors. Gertie told of the family and other neighbors hauling goods to Guthrie. She told of a big hill two miles West of Meridian up which one team could not pull with much of a load. She stated that the neighbors tried to make their hauls to Guthrie in bunches so that they could splice teams together for the hard pull up the hill. This practice didn't work out very well. They never seemed to be able to coordinate their need to make the trips on the same days. The community got together and decided to camp out and work on the hill together, making it easier for the teams to pull their loads up it.
John and Catherine's last child, Roscoe D. was born on January 19, 1897. He was born in Guthrie, Oklahoma. That same year (1897) Charles Franklin died and was buried in McKinley Cemetery. A dreaded disease in the territory that caused much hardship was malaria, commonly called "The Shakes" or "Ague and Chills." Usually these attacks would come on about ten o'clock in the morning and one would have several hours of alternate fever and chills. The accepted remedy at the time was quinine and castor oil. The quinine dosage usually caused ringing of the ears.
John and Catherine tried their hand at selling groceries. In 1900 they opened a small general store in front of their farm located near Shiloh. They worked up a very good trade there. John hauled trade goods in for sale by team and wagon. He later purchased the store located in Shiloh, built by Mr. Campbell, who had also obtained signers for a Post Office to be located there. Catherine was the Post Mistress and helped tend the store. John freighted in groceries which consisted of salt pork, canned tomatoes, sugar, oatmeal, rice, flour, corn meal, beans, and green coffee beans. They bought dry goods by the bolt for resale in their store.
Mail for the Post Office was brought in by stage from Iconium by a black man named George Washington. He also delivered mail to the small Post Offices at Dudley, Merrick, and McKinley.
In 1902 they built the Katy and Fort Smith Railroads. When the Katy's first train went through Shiloh, John sent some of his freight goods out on that train. Shiloh was now a promising farming community with a cotton gin, a blacksmith shop, and a store with post office.
Two railroads served the town. They never connected however. The M.K. & T. (Katy) railroad came through the town from the Northwest and used an empty boxcar off on the siding for a depot. The Fort Smith and Western railroad came through town from the Southeast and its station was about two blocks from the Katy's station. The town never grew to any extent and disappeared except for memories after the end of the railroads in the area.
One winter it was so cold that Bear Creek froze so thick the neighbors cut the ice into blocks. The cotton gin people let all of the neighbors use a small building to store the ice in. The people at the sawmill donated sawdust to pack the ice with.
On January 2, 1902, William Noah married Flora Achsah Whinery in Guthrie Oklahoma, and just before Christmas on December 13, 1902, presented John and Catherine with a Grandson, Lewis Edwin Jarvis. On December 11, 1905, Ora Elva (Jarvis) Christ died at the age of thirty-four (34). She died of blood poisoning following childbirth. In her short life Elva Ora had given John & Catherine seven grandchildren; Catherine Elizabeth Christ; Aaron Wamer Christ; Ester Deborah Christ; Oscar Samuel Christ; Mattie Adaline Christ; Paul Keith Christ; Ernest William Christ:
Catherine Elizabeth took on the chore of a family historian and it is from her writings and records we find much of our family information and history. She passed these onto her daughter, Leona Mryl, who has continued her mothers quest.
On March 11, 1906, Orval Russell married Mary Jane DeWitt in Carney, located in Lincoln County. Their family members resided mostly in Western Oklahoma, Dewey and Blaine Counties.
On March 28, 1906, Gertrude Methia married Leonard Jarvis Smith. In 1906 with the children getting married and leaving home, John & Catherine sold the Shiloh store to Mrs. Grace Allen of Meridian and rented the farm out. Then they moved back into their home in Guthrie.
March 28,1908, Carl Wilbum married Maggie T. Smith, and On November 1, 1908, Edith May married Van R. May at the home of John and Catherine located at 802 W. Washington in Guthrie, Oklahoma. Just six years after his youngest daughter married and left the nest, on February 16, 1914, John W. Jarvis died and was buried in the McKinley Cemetery in the Casket made of black walnut lumber he had cut from his old homestead. He had commissioned and stored the casket in a small shed at his home in West Guthrie.
That same year, on September 28, 1914, Mack W. married Lelia Retta Bradbury in McPherson Kansas. Lelia was a sister to Ada Mary Bradbury, Loyal Irvin's spouse. Lelia and Ada were sisters of Everet Bradbury who operated the service station east of Edmond which was known as Bradbury Corner.
On May 29, 1919, Catherine celebrated the eight-grade graduation of two other grandchildren, Mae Jarvis and Lewis Jarvis. Their graduation exercises were held at the Logan County Public Schools Eight Grade Commencement that was held in the City Hall Auditorium in Guthrie, Oklahoma.
Abt. 1920 Roscoe Daniel Jarvis married Flora Elizabeth Emdie (No Photo available at time of this printing.)
On June 1, 1921, Catherine celebrated Emma Mae Jarvis' wedding to Lawrence Weber at her home located at 802 W. Washington in Guthrie, Oklahoma. She danced around their buggy wishing them a long and happy life together. Emma Mae, being Catherine's grandchild, and daughter of her son William Noah Jarvis. Emma Mae and Lawrence Weber would start their live together in the Luther area, farming.
On July 11, 1937, Catherine Ruth Jarvis posed with Loyal Irvin (her son), Alice Mable (Loyal's daughter), Loren Carlon (Alice Mable's son), and Darrel Carlon (Loren's son) for a five generation photo at her home located at 802 W. Washington in Guthrie, Oklahoma. This article and photo, the Guthrie Daily Leader published depicted the event. Loyal was living with his mother of the home then, while the Carlon's all lived in Perry Oklahoma.
The article stated that Mrs. Jarvis came to Guthrie in 1892, and has made her home here ever since. She has eight children living, fifty-five grandchildren, sixty-five great grandchildren and one great-great-grandchild. This family accounting was when they published the article on July 11, 1937.
On October 8, 1937, Catherine Ruth Church died and was buried next to John in the McKinley Cemetery. At the time of Catherine' article in July 1937, She and John had given birth to thirteen children, who had born them fifty-five grandchildren, sixty-five great grandchildren and one great-great-grandchild.
This was truly a Pioneer Family. At the time of this writing, January 20, 1997, The Jarvis family starting with John William Jarvis and Catherine Ruth Church, and their descendants including spouses had grown to more than fifteen hundred members. The count has not yet been completed. There are additional generation members not yet recorded in our family tree. They remain uncounted as of this writing for 1999 Jarvis Reunion. See photo
© John N. Lehr 6/25/2006 12:18 PM

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