We continue my series of posts about the families whose names are in my Hair Book with Wallace William Plymell and his family.
The two women who "authored" the entries in the Hair Book (Eliza Ursula (Nichols) Swan and her daughter Estella Jane (Swan) Browning) were both descendants of the Plymell family. Eliza's mother Delinda was a Plymell and many of the main players in the Hair Book (Mary Plymell, Adaline Plymell, James Fuller Plymell and Wallace W. Plymell) were Delinda's siblings and Eliza Ursula's uncles and aunts. It's therefore fitting to continue this series with a discussion of Delinda's brother, Wallace William Plymell and his wives and children.
Wallace William Plymell was the first son of James Plymell and Jane Twiley. He was born on 14 Feb 1819 in Deer Creek Twn., Madison Co., OH.
I don't know much about Wallace. He married twice, both times in Crawford County, Illinois -- the first time on 3 Jun 1840 to Margaret J. Grimes (who died c1851 after giving him two daughters, Margaret b. 1841 and Selina b.1843) and second on 18 Sep 1852 to Sophia Jane Cox. Wallace and Sophia had four children of their own -- Cordova D. (b. 1853) , Lyman S. (b. 1855), William Wallace (b. 1860) and Charles Melvin (b. 1861) -- and Wallace also adopted Sophia's son John Catlett Sheppard.
The family lived in Olney in Richland County, IL, for a while before heading to Belleplaine, KS around 1873. Wallace operated a stage line near Plymell, KS.
Eight years later, in 1881, Wallace sent a short note on a postcard back home to Illinois. This slightly ripped and worn postcard in my possession is the only tangible connection I have to Wallace William Plymell. The postcard doesn't have Wallace's name on it and a large portion of the postcard is difficult to read but the references that I can make out point to Wallace as the author.
The front of the card is postmarked "Belleplaine, Kansas, May 30, 1881." It is addressed to Joseph Nichols in Robinson, Crawford County, IL. Joseph was Wallace's brother in law; he was Delinda Jane Plymell's husband and Eliza Ursula's father. The postcard reads:
...ay 29th 1881 ...ear Brother and sister ...as Been along time ...we have heard from ...we are having a nice [a..?] ...looks well of all kinds ...d harvest will soon be ... us we are a[gony?] to have a good [March] crop if nothing happens th[ere?] Kansas looks fine now we have plenty of Rain this spring we live in Belleplaine now the Boys lives on the farm or Charley does Wm is in the Territory hauling for the goverm... ent I am not well am [ ? ] I feel quite w... ...tt times I have got ...questions I hope a ...ect soon to go dow... ...hope you are all we... ...me alive w... ...it this you....
The writer mentions two boys, Charley and William. Wallace was the only person who would have referred to Delinda and Joseph as "brother and sister" with boys named Charley and William old enough to be on their own in 1881. Wallace and Delinda's brother James Fuller Plymell did have a son named William old enough but he didn't have a son named Charles; besides, he lived in Paradise, Texas instead of in Belleplaine, Kansas. The writer also mentions that "William is in the Territory" -- Wallace's son William was living in Choctaw, OK, which was then considered Oklahoma Territory. By the process of elimination, therefore, this postcard must have been written by Wallace.
Wallace's wife Sophia died in 1890 and Wallace married a third time, on 8 Oct 1892, to Susan C. McCarty in Crawford County, IL.
Since Wallace lived in Belleplaine, I wonder if he traveled to IL to visit family and to court Susan? The McCarty name comes up a couple of times concerning the Plymell family. There is a reference made to a "Miss Susan McCarty" in a letter written to Eliza Ursula (Nichols) Swan in Dec 1886 by John Vane, Wallace Plymell's brother in law (he was married to Adaline Plymell, Wallace's sister.) Vane says, "We send our best respects to Miss Susan McCarty - tell her to write to us." Susan was obviously well known to the Plymell family. She may have been a spinster until her marriage to Wallace late in her life -- she was in her early 50's when they married. And oh yes, there were two other McCarty's listed in the Hair Book (Mary J. and Mary A.) I wonder if they were any relation to Susan?
Wallace and Susan moved back to Belleplaine but they didn't live together long before Wallace's death on 10 Mar 1895. Wallace was buried in Belleplaine. Susan was back in Crawford County by 1910, where she died on 27 Sep 1922 in Robinson. Her death certificate is in the Crawford County courthouse.
((Many thanks go to Ken Groves for using his research as the base of this post.))
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