Joseph Walters was born 19 May 1840 in Fulton County, Illinois. His parents were John Walters and Elizabeth Barker. Joseph's mother died when he was only 4 years old - in 1844. It is unclear exactly what happened to the children after the mother passed away. His father did not remarry until 1847 - so there were a few years where most likely the children were raised by relatives. I cannot find Joseph in the 1850 Federal Census - even though I can find his father with his new wife, two of his eldest brothers living with his father. Another older brother, Daniel, is living with his mother's brother, Joseph Barker. Then two younger siblings, sister Susan Ann Walters, and half brother Cannah Walters, are also living with his father. Where was Joseph in 1850? My assumption is that he was either living with a relative close by or that he was mistakenly left off of the household of his father.
The first record we can find Joseph in is the 1860 Federal Census. He is now living with his father, step mother and half brother. His occupation is a farming. Joseph marries Angeline Scott 3 October 1861 in Fulton County, Illinois. I do wonder if Joseph fought in the Civil War as he is the perfect age to do so and his brother, Daniel, did. There was a Joseph Walters from Fulton County that did fight in the Civil War but, it would have been hard to be gone in the Civil War and be fathering children, as he did. Below is part of an account written by the Granddaughter of Joseph and Angeline.
"Grandmother Angeline married her school sweetheart, Joseph Walters, when she was about 18 years old. His mother, Mary Barker, died when he was 10. His father remarried a neighbor widow and they had a red headed son known as "Canny" Walters. He inherited everything including the farm. Grandfather Joseph had two older brothers who left home when they were about 15 years old. They went to the state of Washington where they had a horse ranch."
Between the 1860 and 1870 Federal Censuses Joseph and Angeline had 5 children. Four of these children are found living with them in the 1870 Federal Census. Also living with them is Angeline's father, Thomas Scott. They are still farming and living in Joseph, Fulton County, Illinois.
The family sells the farm in 1873 and moves west to Exeter, Nebraska. Below is an account of this written by Angie Thompson, the Granddaughter of Joseph and Angeline.
"Grandmother Angeline’s sister, Ann, married Hugh Wilson. He migrated to
and came back to Nebraska telling glowing tales of Illinois . That is the reason Great Grandfather Scott sold his farm and moved with Joseph and Angeline and family to Exeter in 1873. They had a square block of ground and planted gooseberry bushes and walnut trees. They settled in town so the children could go to school. The lumber for the two-story frame house they built was shipped from Exeter . The house still stands in Illinois in the north part of town. Someone removed the top story so it is now a one-story house." Exeter
Between the years of 1870 and 1880 four more children are born to Joseph and Angeline. In the 1880 Federal Census they have seven children living with them. Thomas Scott, Angeline's father, is still living with them. Joseph is still farming.
During the next twenty years Angeline and Joseph have three more children. They attempted to move to Washington where Joseph's two older brothers raised livestock, and were pretty prosperous - as I've noted in a previous blog on those brothers. Angie Thompson describes it below.
"Grandfather Joseph sold the home he built in
and outfitted a covered wagon to take the family to the state of Exeter where his two brothers were living. Uncle John, the second eldest son, went with them along with the younger children. Uncle Tom, the eldest son, was working for the railroad and waved to them somewhere along the way from the train he was on. Somewhere west of Washington , Mama could remember sitting on the ground in the evening near the wagon and singing “Buffalo Bill Are You Coming Out Tonight”. As the country grew more desolate, Uncle John said that Grandmother Angeline had stood enough and they were going back to Julesburg, Colorado . Grandfather did not remonstrate. They went back and rented land and farmed." Exeter
We find the family back in Exeter in the 1900 Federal Census in Fillmore County. Seven of their children are still living at home as well as one Grandchild, William Blood. William is the son of their daughter, Elmina. Living two doors down is their eldest child, Thomas Walters, with his wife and two children. It's interesting to note that their daughter, Sarah Jane Walters, is found during this time frame in Walla Walla, Washington. So even though the family did not end of moving to Walla Walla where Joseph's brothers lived, his daughter did. She was found in the 1892 Washington State Census living there with her husband and son. With that I assume Joseph's attempt to move there was sometime prior to 1892.
By 1910 the family has moved to Fairmont, Fillmore County, Nebraska. Three children are still living at home and Joseph is still farming.
Joseph Walters dies 6 May 1913 presumably in Fillmore County, Nebraska since he was living there in 1910. Joseph is buried in the Exeter, Fillmore County, Nebraska.
Granddaughter, Angie Thompson, says:
"I was five years old when Grandfather Joseph died. I can remember seeing him hitch “Ginger” to the gate. I can remember his snow white beard. He brought me candy one time when he came home in the late afternoon with Ginger. I can see the sun shining in the kitchen window on the checkered table cloth and remember the newly baked loaves of bread sitting on the table. What wonderful cooks and neat homemakers!"
Joseph Walters and Angeline Scott had the following children:
1. Thomas Jefferson Walters - born 6 Jul 1862 in Fulton County, IL and dies May 1945 in Riverside, CA. Marries Maryetta Colwell.
2. John William Walters - born 8 Dec 1863 in Fulton County, IL and dies 26 Nov 1947 in Exeter, Fillmore County, NE. Marries Mary Edith Hanson.
3. Sarah Jane Walters - born 27 May 1866 in Fulton County, IL and dies 27 Jul 1957 in Walla Walla, Walla Walla County, WA. She marries 1st Will Howard. She marries 2nd John Bellows.
4. Elmina Dorothy Walters - born 27 May 1868 in Fulton County, IL and dies 28 Sep 1963 in Exeter, Fillmore County, NE. She marries 1st to Edgar Blood. She marries 2nd to Herbert Trego.
5. Un-named boy - born/died around 1870 in Fulton County, IL.
6. Charles Marion Walters - born 30 Oct 1872 in Fulton County, IL and dies 30 Sep 1951 in Llewelyn, Garden County, NE. Marries IdaBelle Alice Minnick.
7. James Lloyd Walters - born 30 Nov 1873 in Fulton County, IL and dies 30 Aug 1944 in Inglewood, Los Angeles County, CA. Marries Velma Ann Guthrie.
8. Amanda Walters - born 5 Nov 1876 in Fillmore County, NE and dies 4 Jul 1969 in Indianola, McCook County, NE. Marries Charles Stanley Thompson.
9. Angie Belle Walters - born about 1878 in Fillmore County, NE and dies Apr 1880 in Fillmore County, NE.
10. Alta May Walters - born 18 Mar 1881 in Fillmore County, NE and dies 6 Mar 1950 in Exeter, Fillmore County, NE. Marries Melvin Mike Guthrie.
11. Joseph Clyde Walters - born 9 Jul 1884 in Fillmore County, NE and dies 20 Oct 1963 in Exeter, Fillmore County, NE. Never marries.
12. Maude Louise Walters - born in 18 Apr 1886 in Fillmore County, NE and dies 24 May 1912 in Exeter, Fillmore County, NE. Marries Bert Lynn.