Posts Tagged ‘Johnston’

Regular members of the MVHS received Issue #34 of Now… and Then, our print journal, in December of 2011. The main article was an enumeration, with random additions of occasional anecdotes and/or photographs, of each of the 186 known or strongly suspected burials in the Petrolia Pioneer Cemetery. I have since been alerted to a few corrections. There may well be more, but for now, i wanted everyone who had read that issue, and who cares about genealogical accuracy, to have these changes.

If you would like to see the full Guide and are not a member, you can either wait a year or so (at which time i will post the entire document here), or send $2 (includes 64 cents postage) to the MVHS at PO Box 144, Petrolia, CA 95558, and i will mail you a print copy.

Change #1: “*FARNSWORTH, Frederick Marcellous- b. 1833 NY, d. 8/26/1897. Son of Zachens and Salome Lyons Farnsworth, bro. of Lucy Ann Wright, et. al. Farmer. Arrived in Mattole 1860, returned to WI to fetch his mother, wife Minerva, infant son Marshall, and sister Julia, arriving back at Mattole by 1866.”
This is what was printed. Wrong! Correct info is:
“Died 12 Jun 1915 at Petrolia and buried there. Born 10 Jun 1833 in New York. Came to Calif in 1853 and to Mattole in 1866. Sister: Mrs. Stevens in Canada. Niece: Lestina Wright.” This is the quote from Marilyn Keach Milota’s book of Humboldt obituary extracts. She is correct that Frederick Marcellous died in 1915. It was his son, Frederick Marshall Farnsworth, who died in 1897, and that is correctly noted in the Cemetery Guide. Thanks to Larry Allen for catching this mistake.

Change #2: Add information: “JOHNSTON, Catharine [Smith]- 1814-1900 Born at Belmont, OH, 11/30/1814, died 5/28/1900 of TB, age 85. Mother of Francis C., Cavie Ann Miner, Laura S., Mary Ellen Smith Witten, Charles A., William C., Richard Cozzine Johnston (husband of Clara Runyon), Samuel S. Johnston, et. al.; bore at least ten children including those lost in childhood.”
Note that Catharine was married to Charles B.S. Johnston, and to this list of the Johnstons’ children, add Eliza Catherine. She was b. 1852, Iowa, married John W. Ball, 9/12/1870; d. 1893. (John was from the Ball family for whom Ball Flat, near the mouth of the Mattole, was named.)

Change #3: “*PATRICK, Esther- 1900-4/20/1901, age 10 mos. Daughter of Eva Elizabeth (Titus) Patrick, who was daughter of LaFayette Titus.” Again, WRONG. Here is the correct info:
“Ester, 10 months old, died 20 Apr 1901 of tubercular meningitis.” (Marilyn Keach Milota). She was the daughter of Elizabeth Titus and John Patrick, and had an older sister, May E. Patrick. Again, thanks to Larry Allen.

In looking into this Titus matter, i found further information that may be of interest: Eva Elizabeth (the one i mistakenly claimed Esther was daughter of) was born 1894 at Petrolia, to Lafayette and Lucy Bowman Titus. On the 1900 Mattole census she is listed with parents and… Maybel, 20; George, 17; Vivian [Susan, later Mrs. Jack Wright], 15; Mary, 11; Eugene, 9; herself, Eva, 6; Hattie, 2; and Maynard, 1/12. According to Rudy McKee’s Petrolia Cemetery file, Eva Elizabeth Titus married George R. Wilbur on 6/18/1913. I did find on the ancestry.com trees that her name at death in 1988 was Eva Wilbur.

Elizabeth or Lizzie Titus, dau. of George Moore Gary (Garry or Geary) Titus and Rosemond (variously spelled) Smith Titus, was born June 1862 (she was sister of Lafayette). Lizzie married John Patrick 12/19/1885 in Rohnerville. She (Elizabeth Titus Patrick) died in Watsonville, Santa Cruz Co., according to a family tree on ancestry.com. I couldn’t find out anything about Mr. Patrick.

Lizzie Titus Patrick, mother of Esther Patrick. Photo from ancestry.com

So Esther Patrick was a later child of Lizzie and John Patrick. There was a daughter, May E. Patrick, born soon after the 1885 marriage. Then, 15 years later, little Esther, who didn’t make it to her first birthday.



Please let me know whenever you see errors, in the newsletter or here on the blog! I will keep adding to this list as the corrections come to me.



Change #4: Under the section on Native burials, i left out an important word in Isaac Duncan’s entry. Where it says he “was the (some say nephew) of Joe Duncan” it should say he “was the son (some say nephew)…” I had read nephew somewhere, but most reports show Isaac, or Ike, being the son of Joseph Duncan.


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“Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven.”
~Matthew 6:19-20, King James Version

Some words of wisdom there. Of course, there are a few beautiful old houses from a hundred thirty years ago or more still standing in the Mattole Valley; but every time i get frustrated at my failures in getting my place together into an earthly paradise, i remember these old places, and how much time, sweat, and money went into building them, and how much living and loving went on in them. All gone. I hope they brought their people great joy– they were beautiful works.

Charles A. and Evaline Langdon Johnston home, built c. 1870, on site of present Cogswell home on Conklin Creek Rd. From the Humboldt Historian.

In center of photo, John Rudolph home, downtown Petrolia. Roughly on the site of present Gail and Phil Franklin home. 1888 photo from Mary Rackliff Etter collection.

The two images above are both of the Charles A. Doe home, on the Lower North Fork, a short distance above the present Mattole Road bridge. Charles and Mary Jane Clark Rackliff lived there after the Doe family moved to Ferndale. Top view is a pencil sketch from Elliott's 1882 History of Humboldt County; photograph is from Mary Rackliff Etter collection.

View showing location of Charles A. Doe home, on the lower reaches of the lower North Fork. If i’m not mistaken, Fourth of July parties used to occur here or nearby, in this curve of the river. See Kalin’s comment below for more ideas. The house in the background–one of those square, Italianate structures similar to the hotel that was once south of the Petrolia Square– is the Giacomini place, later the site of the Geo. Cook, more recently Johnny/June Chambers homes.

Minnie Shallard Etter and Emil J. Etter in front of their Honeydew home. Photo from Mary Rackliff Etter.

Jesse Walker home, called "Sunset View Ranch." Up on the hills near present Scientology place. Sorry about the tilt. Photo courtesy Ben Walker.

William and Dora Hunter Clark home, lower North Fork. Location was down Clark Road toward the river, on the right. Courtesy Ben Walker.

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