Yuma County, Colorado

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Yuma County Pioneer Photographs:


Marvin and Lucy Adelaide (Gale) Bennett and Lucy (Ehrhart) Bennett, Idalia

In 1900 Howell County, Missouri, Frank Bennett 75 and Sallie 66 have Marvin 17.

Also in 1900 Howell County Joseph Gale June 1838 in Pennsylvania, and Mary J. Dec 1842 Tennessee, have Allie October 1873, Henry March 1873, Dudley March 1883, and Lucy July 1884, all kids born in Missouri.

In 1910 Howell County Missouri, Francis G. Bennett, 82 and Sarah J. 66, have Marvin Ivy 27, Lucy A. 24, with Francis J. four months.  One tree said she was "Lucy Adelaide Gale"

Lucy Ehrhart, 19, married Mr. Bert "Roberta", 22, in Howell County Missouri October 29, 1912.

In 1920 Howell County Burt and Lucy have Lest J. 6, and Jana M. 1.

Bert Lawrence Roberts, married to Lucy, was born Aug 5, 1891 and died October 21, 1927.  Son of Richard Roberts and Mary Merritt.


Marvin Ivy Bennett twice brought his family (a separate wife named Lucy each trip) from Howell Co, Missouri to Yuma County, Colorado because his doctor said he needed a drier climate, & he had McFarland cousins near Eckley who presumably said good things about the area. The first stay about 1923 ended in the death of his first wife Lucy Adelaide Gale in 1924 in birthing her 8th child, when both died & are buried in the Eckley cemetery.

Dad had a hard time managing to keep the family together. When potential housekeepers found out there were seven children, he never heard from them again. The four oldest were boys, Frank at just 15, Ralph, Elmer & Orval, & the oldest girl -Nola just 8, Henry 6 & Evelyn 3. They returned to Missouri at some point, back to their old house across from Bennett Chapel. Widow Lucy Ehrhart Roberts came to do housekeeping for him & was so concerned about those poor motherless kids getting teased at school if their overalls werenít ironed, that she accepted his proposal of marriage & added mothering those seven to her only remaining child - Ina Merline Roberts..

The family moved back to Yuma county in time for Evedene to be born there in May 1929 - delivered by Doc Garcia. (The story of my birth is that I was born, dad fainted & the stock market crashed !) We soon moved to Carl Colletteís place on the Arikaree River near Fox School where the boys sometimes drove the old Model T with horses pulling it. And where I at age 5 had to sing at a community club "Whoís Afraid Of The Big Bad Wolf " by myself because my little brother reneged. Just across the west fields was Olivet Church where a Mr. Killian gave a great piano performance at least once. Then Ivy Ray was born 1931 completing the ten children .  

That house was made of stone - lovely white with pinkish tan parts - that mom said was the coolest in summer & warmest in winter that she had ever lived in. The tall windows were deep enough for a window seat where I liked to sit & play with my dolls. There was a pipe from the windmill to the kitchen sink, but that was all the plumbing there was. No electricity - we used coal-oil lamps, & fed the black iron stove with corncobs or even dried cow chips. Iíve written several small memoir pieces about experiences then.

It was the wrong time to be farming there. After losing several successive crops to locusts, hail & drought, - dust-storm depression years - dad gave up & was lucky enough to get the job managing the creamery in Kirk just when Henry, Evelyn & Ina were starting high school & Evedene first grade. Orval & Henry soon went off to CCC camps, the older boys worked for area farmers, & Frank worked in the mines up in Gunnison for awhile.

In 1937 Elmer was killed by a speeding car up near Denver, children all came home for the funeral (Ralph had married Bonnie Eastin, & Ina had married Orval Gibson & with brother Orval were working up in Washington state, & Nola in Denver.) Ralph is buried by his mother in Eckley.

After school ended in May 1938 we moved to Clackamas County, Oregon where, after a full life, (Frank & Henry in New Guinea in WW2) all of the boys- Frank, Ralph, Orval, Henry & Ivy - eventually followed Marvin & Lucy to their graves. Nola Emerick died in Missouri, where she & husband Bill had farmed, Evelyn Smith in Denver where her husband Bernard Smith owned his drug store (& always kept the soda bars after other druggists abandoned them) & Ina Gibson in Idaho, though husband Orval Gibson ran his upholstery business most of his life & preached in Yuma. Most left great grandchildren.

My brothers were not bulb farmers in Yuma - only in Oregon. That was the Oregon Bulb Farms where Jan DeGraff crossed lilies - so difficult to grow - and came up with varieties that ordinary folk can get to grow and bloom so beautifully.  He also grew daffodils & once during WW2, when the young men were in the service & the older ones working in the shipyards, there was a call at the high school for kids to go de-head the daffodils. (Makes better bulbs.)  So a bunch of us went, stooped over pulling off those blossoms to just fall on the ground. So sad!  It was Senior Prom time and I was head of decoration for it, so I got friends to save lots of those and we threaded them to make a big "Club 45" on the maroon stage curtains. (what we named the affair for the class of 1945).The father of one of my classmates on that committee was superintendent at that particular bulb farm - which made it easier to accomplish the decorations.


Only I remain of those ten siblings. Iím retired from a life of music, teaching & raising kids, (now have great grand kids), busy myself with genealogy- published in 2001 my fully indexed, 500 page Bennett Book: Descendants of Benjamin & Delilah 1772 NC/SC to 1864 MS. We now have our Bennetts back to 1600s Virginia. Earlier I did a short genealogy of dadís motherís Bradshaws, & in 2011 published the genealogy of my motherís Ehrharts - from 1720 Germany down to present. When I see an ancestral surname in Yuma County, I wonder.......could it be another cousin?

One of the high points of my life was receiving a Fulbright teacher exchange to England for the year 1983/84. What an experience that was! Such a different way of teaching that many of us thought we couldnít persevere, but English teachers who had taught in the USA showed us how to merge styles. The whole experience of living in another country - making new friends of neighbors & fellow-workers, seeing how we can live differently, besides traveling around the country with them on holidays (so much better than looking at natives through bus windows) - is so profound ! I came home wishing people in all walks of life could do such an exchange in their own profession. The summer before it, I did research in teaching systems in Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, Switzerland, & Denmark - a real eye opener on different ways of teaching.. Friends made that wonderful year & I continue exchanging news at Christmas & weíve made visits back and forth.

What an adventurous puzzle is life ! 


What a puzzle is life!

Evedene Bennett - January 2014

My mother Lucy Christina Ehrhart had a first marriage about that time to Bert Roberts. She was born Oct 3, 1893 to Jacob Ehrhart & Susan Wilson of the Pottersville, & Cureall area. Bert was killed by a mule kick & her little boy Lester died at age 7. She brought daughter Ina to her 2nd marriage to Marvin I. Bennett of Peace Valley in 1928. I'd like the date of her first marriage to Bert Roberts which does not seem to be on either the Howell County or the Missouri State sites.

E. Bennett

Mrs. Lucy Roberts, 34, married Marvin I. Bennett, 45, in Howell County, Missouri July 13, 1928.

In 1920 Howell County, Missouri Marvin I. Bennett is 37, Lucy A. 34, Francis J. 10, Ralph E. 7, Elmer  6, Orville C. 4, Nola J. 3, John H. 1, and Sarah J. Bennett, 76.

In the Eckley, Colorado cemetery is a Lucy A. Bennett - 1885-1924 "Mother and baby" 

In 1930 Idalia precinct Marvin Bennett, 47, Kentucky and Lucy C. Bennett, 37, Missouri, have Francis J. 20, Ralph E. 18, Elmer C. 16, Orvil C. 15,  - all sons born in Missouri - , Nola J. 13, Missouri, Henry J. 11, Missouri, Evelyn R. 9 Missouri, May E. 2, Colorado, and Ina Roberts, 12, step-daughter born in Missouri.


So this photo was taken very close to 1930.

 The Fanny in the picture is 2nd  or so cousin of Evedene's father (M.I.Bennett)  -  Fanny McFarland daughter of James Wm. M McFarland & Lucy E. Burroughs. Fanny May married Robert McCoy December 19, 1936 in Wray, by Judge Barker, lived in Vernon & the only child was Beverly who died young.

In 1920 James and Lucy McFarland are in Howell County, Missouri, and Fannie M. is three, born in Missouri. Siblings are Jessie L. 11, Roy W. 10, Allie L. 9, Luther H. 8, and Virgil E. 5.


1937 Yuma County directory

McFarland, J. L. (w) Agnes - 5W 3N 1W 2N 1W Wray, Rt. 1 Wray, Owns    Farmer, Ph. 036F3, (Louise, Billy).
McFarland, J. W. (w) Lucy - 1/2S 1E Eckley, Rt. 2 Eckley, Rents    Farmer, Ph. 2809.
McFarland, Luther (w) Ruth - 1E 9S 1-1/2E Eckley, Rt. 2 Eckley,    Rents, Farmer, (Katherine).
McFarland, Roy (w) Florence - Eckley, Rents,  Farmer.
McFarland, Vergie (w) Nellie - 1/2S 1E Eckley, Rt. 2, Eckley,    Rents, Farmer, Ph. 2809.

In 1920 Robert McCoy is 8, born in Colorado, with parents Claude 42 and Rosetta 35 McCoy in Idalia precinct.

In 1930 Robert E. McCoy is still with his parents in Idalia precinct, and in 1940 "Bob"  and "Fanney" are ranching  in Laird precinct.

  Fannie McCoy - thanks to Smilinqt21

One tree says Bob married Josie Nevins in Wray August 14, 1971, and died Dec 31, 1991 in Wray.

The Bennetts are not in the 1934 Yuma County directory, but they are in the 1937 "Bennett, M.I. (Lucy) Kirk, Creamery Prop. (Ivy, Evelyn, Evadene)

Evelyn Ruth Bennett married Joseph Bernard Smith, Jr., July 31, 1939 in Stratton, Colorado - (H.J. Ernst, Catholic priest of Stratton) - and the marriage was recorded in Denver.

Joseph is a clerk in a drug store in 1940 Denver, 25, with Evelyn, 19, both born in Colorado, and both were in Yuma in 1935.

 Louis E. Smith proved up 320 acres in 28 and 33, 5S 47W in 1913.

Lewis E. Smith, 41, born in Kentucky and Mildred F. Smith, 34, born in New York, are farming in 1920 Joes precinct.  They have Leonard J. Howlatt, 15, Missouri and Irvin C. Howlatt, 14, Nebraska (Mildred's sons) Joseph B. Smith 4, Alice , 3, and Lewis L. 1, all three born in Colorado.

In 1930 Stratton, Colorado, Louis E. is an attendant at a gas station, 51, married-but-no-spouse, with J. Bernard, 14, Olive I, 12, and Louis L. 11.

In 1940 Marvin L. and Lucy are in Clackamas County, Oregon, with Frank 30, Orville 26, Nola 23, Henry 21, Eredine 11, and Ivy 9, and all the males are "bulb farmers".  They all were in Yuma in 1935.

Lucy died Nov 26, 1960 in Clackamas County, Marvin November 4, 1959.

Orval C. Bennett - Apr 2, 1915 - May 24, 1982 is buried in Scandinavia Cemetery, Clackamas County. 38151931

Henry Bennett 
A funeral will be at 11 a.m. Thursday, Feb. 5, 2004, in Sandy Funeral Home for Henry 
Bennett, who died Feb. 1 at age 85. Mr. Bennett was born Nov. 14, 1918, in Peace 
Valley, Mo., and moved to Sandy, Oregon as a child. During World War II, he served in the 
Army. He was a surveyor for the Bonneville Power Administration. In 1941, he married 
Florence Hibbord; they divorced. He married Louise Symons; she died in 1989. He 
married Mabel F. Brown; she died in 1996. 

Survivors include his sisters, Nola Emerick and Evedene Bennett; and three 
grandchildren. His daughter Ledella Chaney died in 2002. 

Remembrances to the Sandy Masonic Lodge. 

Portland, Oregonian  
Willamette National Cemetery   36256374

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Photos contributed by Dallas Riedesel