Saturday, March 22, 2014

Josiah Foster Negley

Josiah was born December 7, 1846 in Bedford County, Pennsylvania.  He is my connection to the Foster family.   In one of my first few posts, The Book that got me Hooked, I explained that a book found in the old trunk in the attic got me started on all of this. Josiah's parents were John and Ruth Foster, Ruth's parents were the focus of "The History of the Foster Family", by D. I. Foster. 

John and Ruth were married September 15, 1836 in Bedford County.  Their children were: 
  1. David (1837-1917)
  2. George (1839- ? )  died before 1850
  3. Susanna (1841-1922)
  4. Amon (1842- ? )  died before 1850
  5. Catherine  (1843-1870) 
  6. Josiah Foster  (1846-1922)
  7. John Calvin  (1850-1916)
David married Mary Goodman and Catherine married Charles Dorman in Pennsylvania before they all moved to Illinois.  Susannah married William Kelley in 1870 in Illinois. Josiah married Sarah Lee and John Calvin married Mary Fisher both in 1871 in Bureau County, Illinois.  Sometime between 1871 and 1880, all of the family moved to Decatur County, Iowa where the parents lived the rest of their lives.  John Foster died at age 76 in 1884 and Ruth died in 1895 at age 87.   By 1887 Josiah and Sarah moved on to Clay County, Nebraska where Sarah's brother George Lee had moved to in 1878.  

Eldorado was home to Josiah and Sarah from then on.  Three of their children lived with them into their adult years.  I've heard that the Negleys' front porch was lined with chairs. Here is a great photo of the "town" of Eldorado, about 1910-1915.  You can see the church on the left and the school on the right.  I don't know where the Negley & Miller Station would be from this view, a question to have answered someday.  The writing says "Watching a horse race", with a magnifying glass you can see them at the other end of the road.

Josiah must have suffered a stroke about 1914.  Strokes are very common in this line of the family.  A distant cousin, Clarence Neff, sent me photocopies of a letter that Josiah had sent to his father written on October 3, 1920.  On the top of the first page, written up-side-down is this note: 

"Excuse the bad writing and mistakes as my right side and arm have been partly paralyzed for over 6 years and I am over 74 years of age.  Best wishes to you all, very truly J. F. Negley." 
Josiah was a farmer his entire life.  He served as Justice of the Peace in Eldorado from 1912 until his death in 1922, and then Sarah held that position until 1925, maybe completing his term.  In Eldorado that would not have been a full-time job.  He died on April 15 at age 75.

"Obituary - Josiah F. Negley
Josiah F. Negley, the son of John and Ruth Negley, was born in Bedford Co., Pa., December 7th, 1846 and died at his home in Eldorado, Nebr., April 15, 1922, aged 75 years 4 months and 8 days.
At the age of sixteen he moved with his parents to Bureau Co., IL, where on March 5, 1871 he was married to Sarah M. Lee.  To this union six children were born:  George, Newton, William, Calvin, Alice and Mrs. Sadie McGrath.  Newton died August 8, 1887.  The others with their mother survive him.
Mr. Negley was member of the Church of God of Eldorado and ever tried to walk in the paths of right.  He was a kind husband and father and a true neighbor.
The funeral was held from the Methodist Episcopal church in Eldorado, Monday, April 17.  Rev. B. N. Kunkel in charge.  Interment was made in the Harvard Cemetery."  

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