Sunday Stories: Humphrey Family

James Dewayne Humphrey (born October 3, 1811 and died January 3, 1880) and Mary Elizabeth (McCullough) Humphrey (born July 12, 1820 and died September 14, 1906) were married in Shelby County, Ohio, August 19, 1838, by Esquire Cannon. James and Mary were each the youngest of twelve children in their families. James was a farmer by trade. While living in Ohio, they lived in a log cabin, cooking over an open fire in the fireplace. They wore clothes made of cloth they hand wove, and their children enjoyed coon hunting. Their beds were built high off the floor and had long dust ruffles.

The family name was believed to have been spelled Umfrey, then changed to Umphrey. When they moved to Illinois, the name was changed to Humphrey. James and Mary moved by covered wagon to Illinois in an unknown year. They continued farming while in Illinois. James passed away January 3, 1880 and lies in the Maroa Cemetery, Macon Co., Illinois. After this, two of his sons, Jasper and Virgil, came to Nebraska. They farmed for a brief time west of Sutherland until Virgil moved to Iowa and then on to Canada, and Jasper moved to Idaho. In 1892, Mary and part of her family also moved to Nebraska. Son, Benonia and wife Elizabeth, came and homesteaded in Keith County to prove up on. Mary lived with Wesley and Joseph. Daughter, Hepsey, with her husband James Rolofson, also purchased land southwest of Sutherland at this same time. They returned to Illinois after a short time. Ben, Wes, and Joe continued to farm until retirement.

James and Mary had 11 children. Their first child was John Fernando Humphrey (Born June 28, 1839 and died July 22, 1864). He enlisted in the Civil War for three months and was discharged. John re-enlisted for another three month period or for the duration of the war. He was killed at Peachtree Creek at the age of 25 years.

Isabella Jane “Bell” Humphrey (Born August 23, 1841 and died October 29, 1886), was married to William Rose, November 15, 1868. William Rose died June 17, 1873. Bell and William had two daughters, Katie and Elizabeth. Isabella married Albert Seger, October 25, 1874, in Macon Co., Illinois, by Esquire Rogers. They had one daughter whose name is unknown. Isabella Seger is buried in Maroa Cemetery, Macon Co., Illinois.

Archibald Livingston “Live” Humphrey (born January 13, 1843 and died October 10, 1913) and Electure Quiet “Lecky” Swing (died about 1916) were married January 12, 1870, in Logan Co., Illinois, by Preacher Brandenberg. Archibald also served in the Civil War. Their first three children, Anna, Richard, and another boy, all died of influenza at an early age. Live and Lecky then had two sons, Walter and Willis. Archibald and Electure are buried in Laenna Cemetery, Chestnut, Logan Co., Illinois. Benonia Ausberry “Ben” Humphrey (Born February 18, 1845 and died March 1, 1922) was married to Elizabeth Osenbaugh (born 1855 and died July 5, 1918) in Maroa, Macon County, Illinois, by Preacher Dowd, March 8, 1874. Their children were James, Charles Elmer (who was buried beside his grandmother Mary, in the Frontier Cemetery, then moved to the Riverview Cemetery, Sutherland) and Rancy. Ben and Elizabeth are both buried in the Riverview Cemetery.

William Harvey Humphrey was born March 3, 1847, and died March 24, 1849. He lies buried in Hardin Cemetery, Shelby Co., Ohio.

Robert W. Humphrey (born May 17, 1850 and died November 30, 1886) was married December 23, 1877 in Macon Co., Illinois by Esquire Johnson, to Laura High. They had three children: William, Joseph, and a daughter who died at a young age. Robert is buried in Maroa Cemetery, Macon Co., Illinois.

James Wesley “Wes” Humphrey (born November 28, 1852 and died March 11, 1942) and Geneva Arizona “Zoni” Knowles (born 1877 and died September 12, 1949) were married December 19, 1894. Six children were born to this union. They were Richard “Dick”, Bertha, Nellie, Hazel, Frank and Floyd. Wesley and Geneva are buried in the Riverview Cemetery south of Sutherland.

Jasper Marion Webster “Jap” Humphrey (born March 12, 1844 and died January 5, 1920) and Laura (Cooper) Pease were married in November 1903. They had no children and were later divorced. Jasper is buried at Payette, Idaho.

Virgil Cowen Humphrey (born October 13, 1858 and died January 7, 1932) and Mary Kalcoffin were married on April 25, 1888. Their children were Alva, Eva and Ervin. Virgil is buried at Delburne, Alberta, Canada.

Hepsey Elizabeth “Lizzy” Humphrey (born February 21, 1861and died April 8, 1936) and James “Jim” Rolofson were married January 21, 1891. Their children were Mary, May, Nora, Leona and John. Jim had a son from a previous marriage named Earl. Hepsey is buried in Maroa Cemetery, Macon Co., Illinois.

Joseph Henry Ross “Joe” Humphrey (born April 19, 1863 and died December 2, 1945) and Louisa Katie “Lucy” Refoir (born May 29, 1873 and died September 18, 1945) were married October 3, 1895. Their children were Clara, Mertie, George and Katie L. Both Joe and Lucy are buried in the Sutherland Riverview Cemetery.


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