A history of the Yoakum, Yocom, Yocum, Families. H. C. Smith, M

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While Stephen was in the war he passed through McDonough County, Illinois and liked the level land so well he settled there after the war.

He was married to Mary Dorris who was born and raised in Tennessee and was of Danish descent. She gave birth to six daughters and two sons and with two step-daughters had a large family. One son died when four years old and George died on the Murfreesboro battlefield during the Civil War so when grandfather died in 1873 the name died with him. Grandmother died in 1877 after a very short illness. All the girls (but one who died when 14 years old) were married and lived in Illinois but my mother who lived in Nebraska.

My parents met each other when father was selling medicine in Illinois. They corresponded while father was in the army and mother saw him when the troops were stationed at Quincy, Illinois.

When father was discharged he wrote mother he was coming to see her and going to ask her a question and wanted her to say `yes.' She took the letter to her mother to read who told her she might do worse for he was a kind looking man.

(And I would like to add here that father was very kind. I once told him that Christ said `the meek would inherit the earth' and I was sure there was a large place for him.)”

So they were married the next day at Macomb, Illinois. Mother aged 26, father 35. Father went back to Mendon, Adams County, Illinois and mother followed in a few weeks and they lived in Mendon and Quincy until they moved to Nebraska.

They went back to Clay, New York so the first child could be born in the old home and mother could meet the Burleighs.

In Oct 1867 they moved to Nebraska coming through in covered wagon drawn by two mares and two large mules.

Several years before he bought 400 acres of land in Otoe County for $200 and here they came to a four roomed house - two rooms downstairs and two upstairs. It was an open winter and father broke prairie every month in the year but February.

When the railroad came though, the town of Syracuse was located about ½ mile away. Before that, their nearest town was 18 miles away - Nebraska City. Four chidren were born near Syracuse.

Mother's health was poor and a doctor said she had quick-consumption and should go to Colorado. So, May 15, 1880 they left their farm with a renter and started west (they afterwards sold the farm). A light spring wagon drawn by horses was for father, mother and me to ride in. A bed was in the back part and mother could lie down when tired. A covered wagon drawn by six milk cows held the rest of the family and a hired woman who came along to take a claim. The woman and the two girls slept in the wagon and father and the boys slept on the ground.

A pony, whose rider was Edwin or Eliza went before the cows and they followed at a slow pace. Father and mother always went ahead and found a camping place. In just a few days mother was so much better, she was sitting up most of the time.

I thought it a rare treat to ride in the big wagon. We camped early at night and the cows were milked and allowed to graze. We sat around the campfire and fahter held worship and we sang songs.

The boys and father never stopped the cows when they wanted to get into the wagon but would quickly go behind the cows and climb on the wagon tongue and into the wagon. One time Edwin slipped and fell and a front wheel ran over him, he then curled up and the back wheel missed him. No bones were broken and his muscles were sore only a few days.

I developed measles so they stopped at a farmhouse and rented a room and mother care for me and the others didn't have measles.

When they reached Bloomington they saw the sign `Deary's Furniture Store' and found Bill Deary, an old friend from Illinois. We camped near his home and visited some distant relatives by the name of Yocum who lived near Bloomington.

Jim Yocum had a visitor who had just proved up on his land in Harlan County and wanted to sell it. (The U.S. Land Office was in Bloomington then).

Father and mother went to see the land and bought the 160 acres for $200. They young man had been living in a dug-out but had a sod house about ready for a roof. He had just received a letter from his intended wife saying she would never live west of the Mississippi River so he sold out. She lived in Ohio.

They soon finished the house and we moved in June 14, 1880. We had board floors in all four rooms but most of our neighbors had mother earth for floors. We put down a carpet in the living room and how happy we were when father brought home an organ - he traded one of the horses for it. Mary could play the organ and it was the only one around and we sang when company came to see us.

Mabel was born the next summer and we were a very happy family. But school was 2½ miles from home and only a few months during the year so father began looking around for a new home for he wanted his children to have an education.

Jim Yocum decided to move to Oregon so father bought his place that was ½ mile east of Bloomington. It was a much large house and frame and still stands. We moved January 1, 1882.

The next winter the five chidlren, the hired girl and herd boy had the measles and mother cared for them. Father done chores alone.

Later father sold the Yocum place and bought the Dorsey place ½ mile west of Bloomington. While living there George attended a missionary college in Battle Creek, Michigan and Mary began teaching school, also became engaged to Edward Jayne.

Edwin would soon be going to college so father sold the farm and bought a hotel in Bloomington the fall of 1885. We rented rooms but never served meals. Although there were two other hotels our rooms would be filled when district court was in session and we girls would give up our room and sleep on the kitchen floor.

Mary was married at home Dec. 3, 1885. Edward was teaching school but studying to be a minister for the Seventh-Day Adventist Church. After he was ordained they moved to Ft. Calhoun, Nebraska. Edna was about two years old and how we hated to see them leave.

George was called by the mission board to go with the first group of missionaries from the S.D.A. church sent to South Africa. He was there almost three years and returned to take a medical course so he could do more good. He took medical at Ann Arbor, Michigan and interned at Battle Creek, Michigan Sanitarium. Eliza was there taking nurses training and Edwin was in college.

In 1890 father traded the hotel for a farm situated 7 miles north of Bloomington. Mother, Mabel and I moved to Ft. Calhoun and father sold religious books. When word came that the renter was destroying things on the farm mother returned to see about things as father couldn't get away until in June. The renter had left so mother hired a man and woman to bread the sod and plant broom corn and father harvested a good crop that fall. The next spring 1893 I taught a two months term of school and became acquainted with Earnest for his folks were our neighbors. We both taught and went to school until Nov. 28, 1897 when we were married at a simple home wedding.

Father owned a five roomed house in Bloomington that he rented. It was vacant when we were married so the next week they moved into it for they found it too lonely on the farm so rented the farm.

George had contracted t.b. after graduation and spent time in Colorado and old Mexico, came home the spring of 1899 and died Oct 1899. Edwin came home and cared for him and then went back to Medical College for he had promised George he would take up where he left off. But it wasn't to be for Edwin had to quit medical school the last semester and died Sept 15, 1904.

Mabel was married at home Feb. 14, 1908 to Clyde Batterson so father and mother were alone now. Mother wasn't well and lost flesh and had to give up and go to bed. Mary and Mabel came home and cared for mother but she died June 19, 1909 of cancer.

Father went home with Mary, who lived in Atlantic City, New Jersey and lived with her and her family and Eliza and fmaily until he died Jan. 4, 1911 at Acushnet, Massachusetts.

Father and mother didn't leave us money wealth but very pleasant memories and a good example to follow: Morning and evening worship and a firm trust in God.
Side Lines

Stephen Yocum was witty and told stories but was always ready to lend a helping hand to any one who needed help.

Word came from Tennessee after War broke out between the States that an uncle and aunt of grandmother's were in trouble. Their son was in hiding for he didn't want to join the Southern Army and was afraid to join the Northern army for fear his aged parents would be mistreated. So grandfather sent for Uncle Jackie and Aunt Betsy to come to Illinois to stay at their house. They stayed there two years until other arrangements were made. Uncle Jackie read his Bible most of the time and could tell in what book of the Bible any verse was that was read to him. And quite often give the chapter and verse. My mother said they tried him many times but he could always tell the book. Both were deaf but Aunt Betsy was always busy knitting or sewing.

This instance happened near the close of the War and I will tell it as best as I can the way mother told me.

It was a cold frosty morning and I had a bad sore throat and father, mother and I were seated in the living room near the fireplace. Father was reading and mother and I were knitting when the dog began barking and Belle, the hird girl, poked her head in the door and said, `Mr. Yocum, your African friends have come to see you.' Father went out and we looked out the window. There were eight colored people, counting children. Father shook hands all around and we saw him take his handkerchief and wipe his eyes. Then he led them into the kitchen and came in to talk with mother. `That old colored woman spun and wove cloth for my mother,' said father `and those men are her sons and grandsons.'

The Southern people were going to kill them unless they would work for nothing although they had been set free by President Lincoln.

A planter didn't want them killed told Sol (who had worked for us but now lived in Kentucky) to take his wagon and team and take the colored people across the river into free territory. He started after dark and gave them directions how to reach father's house after they reached Macomb, Illinois. And here they were with packs on their backs and had walked a long way.

Belle came in and told mother she wasn't staying with `niggers' so mother said, `You have wanted to visit your sister so now is your time and father will take you and when they leave we will come for you.'

Father told the men they could cut timber from his land and build cabins and were a great help. The last time I was in Illinois I saw some of those colored people and they spoke with reverence of `Massa' Yocum.

`What about Belle?' I asked mother. `She came back and worked for my mother for seven years or until she was married.'

Grandfather liked to play jokes on people so here is one he played on a neighbor. Grandfather had a calf he was hand feeding and this neighbor wanted to buy it but grandfather refused and the neighbor kept raising the price. One morning he found the calf dead so told the hired men to prop it up in the pen. When the neighbor came, grandfather asked if he still wanted to buy the calf and if his last offer was still good? The neighbor said it was and grandfather said, `dead or alive' and the neighbor said `yes.' They went to see the calf and had a big laugh.

Grandmother Pruett (mother of Alice Pruett who married Daniel Thompson) told me this story and how she did laugh when she told it. This happened before he knew grandmother.

Grandfather had been going with a neighbor girl for some time and the family moved away. I don't remember the number of miles away but it was some distance to go by horseback. He started early although it looked like rain. He was dressed in his best and wore new boots and a new homespun cape that shed rain quite well. He hadn't gone many miles until it began to rain and kept it up until he reached his girl's home in the evening. He sat and talked to his girl but his boots began hurting his feet so he could scarcely stand it. When bedtime came he was shown to the guest room. He tried and tried to get his boots off but they wouldn't budge so he went to bed with his boots on. Next morning he awoke early and left before the family were up and never went back again.

This is one about Grandmother Dopker (Mary Chapman Thompson Dopker, mother of Daniel Thompson) when they first moved to Franklin County. They lived in fear of the Indians although they were further west in the state. One day a neighbor rode up in haste and told them to get their belongings and go to a certain neighbor's home where they would all gather to fight for their lives. He had seen a band of Indians on horseback coming their way, over south on the bluffs. He then went on to warn the other settlers. So grandmother sounded the horn so the men folks would come to the house and all helped in putting things in the wagon and Daniel started rounding up the cattle. They were about ready to start when grandmother remembered her wooden tub that was soaking at the spring and declared she wouldn't go until she had the tub. Before the children returned with the tub the man who had informed them returned and said that what he saw wasn't Indians but a herd of cattle. Cattle were driven overland from Texas to Kerney to be shipped East. So grandmother always said a tub saved the day for her.

This happened before I was born but I do not know the dates. Father was doing his trading in Nebraska City, 18 miles from home and the road was just a trail across country and not many houses along the way.

Early one morning, father had a load ready to take to town and said to mother, `I may be late in getting home as I will have a load both ways. But don't worry about me and Jimmie will do the chores.' (Jimmie was a neighbor boy.) Jimmie came after dinner and played with the children and ate an early supper. Two men walked into the yard and asked for the man of the house. Mother told them father had gone to town but she was expecting him home. They asked if she would get them something to eat so mother did and when it was ready, asked them to be seated at the table. They didn't take off their hats and white waiting on them she noticed they carried side arms. So now she was afraid. They thanked her for the meal and walked away. Jimmie went for the cows and when he returned said he saw those two men laying in a draw not far from the barn. He done the chores in a hurry and asked if he couldn't sleep upstairs for he had been sleeping on a cot downstairs. They had no key to the outside door so they moved some heavy furniture against the door and all slept upstairs.

Mother didn't sleep much but done a lot of praying for protection for father and themselves. The dog done a lot of barking during the night. Next morning Jimmie went to do chores and saw by the hay in the manger that two people had stayed there.

Father came home about mid forenoon and he had this to tell. He started from town rather early and something keep telling him to go see George Warner. Now George Warner was a boyhood friend of father's but lived off the road some distance. But it kept coming to his mind, go see George Warner. So he went to see him and was surprised to find them all well for he feared they were ill or in trouble. Father said he mustn't stay but a short time for he must be home that night. George told him to put his team in the barn and he would get him up early next morning, so he did as he was tired.

Then mother told her story and both agreed that God surely spoke to father and caused him not to come home during the night. And when they read the weekly paper they learned that horse thieves had been in that part of Nebraska. Then was brought to mind Isaiah 65:24. `And it shall come to pass, that befor they call I will answer; and while they are yet speaking, I will hear.'“ Genealogy of the Burley or Burleigh Family of America by Charles Burleigh, Portland, Maine, 1880.
Rebecca Jane Yocum (daughter of Stephen Powell and Delilah (Scott) Yocum)

5 May 1825: born.

11/15 Sept 1845: married Thomas H. Jones, by William Maxwell.

ca 1846/47: son Thomas Jones born.

ca 1848: daughter Margaret Jones born; married _______ Thomas.

ca 1850/51: daughter Mary Jones born; married _______ Thomas.

22 Oct 1858: m/2 Anthony Baer.

ca 1859: daughter Margareta Baer born.

9 June 1865: died.
Eliza Ann Yocum (daughter of Stephen Powell and Mary (Dorris) Yocum)

ca 1830: born.

29 June 1848: licensed to marry Coles County, Illinois, William Toland.
Talitha Cumi Yocum (daughter of Stephen Powell and Mary (Dorris) Yocum)

17 Oct 1832: born.

25 Dec 1856: married George Taylor Harlan (29 Dec 1827-1908) son of Wesley and Nancy (Greenup) Harlan.

1919: died.

Amanda Yocum (daughter of Stephen Powell and Mary (Dorris) Yocum)

9 July 1846: married Jesse Tatman by James Clark.

no date: m/2 _______ Booker.
Cornelia Hester “Esther” Yocum (daughter of Stephen Powell and Mary (Dorris) Yocum)

1/4 Apr 1836: born McDonough County, Illinois.

2 Oct 1856: married Pennington Point-Adair, McDonough County, Illinois, William McKendree Harlan (17 Feb 1854-22 May 1888) son of Wesley and Nancy (Greenup) Harlan.

no date: son S. Judd Harlan born; married Mary A. _______ (1868-1895).

25 Jan 1875: daughter Mertie Hester Harlan born; married Henry M. Bloomer (11 May 1874-18 Mar 1956). Henry was a minister.

8 Mar 1915: died.

George F. Yocum (son of Stephen Powell and Mary (Dorris) Yocum)

22 Jan 1838: born.

4 Feb 1862: enlisted in Company C, 84th Infantry as a sergeant.

31 Dec 1862: died.

Killed at the Battle of Stone River.
Mary L. V. Yocum (daughter of Stephen Powell and Mary (Dorris) Yocum)

13 Mar 1855: married John M. Wilcox.

Clarissa V. “Clara” Yocum (daughter of Stephen Powell and Mary (Dorris) Yocum)

6 Sept 1862: married James W. Stephens.

Died young and left 2 small children.
Elzira K. Yocum (daughter of Stephen Powell and Mary (Dorris) Yocum)

27 Mar 1839: born McDonough County, Illinois.

7 Oct 1865: married Macomb, Illinois, to John Quincy Burleigh (21 May 1830 Clay, Onondaga County, New York-4 Jan 1911 Acushnet, Massachusetts at the home of Mary R. Jayne) son of Samuel Norris and Ruth C. (Bean) Burleigh.

17 June 1867: daughter Mary R. Burleigh born Clay, Onondaga County, New York; died 10 Oct 1942; married 3 Dec 1885 to Edward Jayne.

Oct 1867: moved to Otoe County, Nebraska.

26 Dec 1868: son George W. Burleigh born Syracuse, Nebraska; died 26 Oct 1899 Bloomington, Nebraska of tuberculosis; graduated from Medical School.

14 June 1870: daughter Eliza Burleigh born Syracuse, Nebraska; died 24 Dec 1950 died New Bedford, Massachusetts; 24 Aug 1898 married _______ Bradford.

23 Feb 1872: son Edwin Burleigh born Syracuse, Nebraska; died 15 Sept 1904 in his senior year of college of tuberculosis.

12 Oct 1876: daughter Sarah Louella Burleigh born Syracuse, Nebraska; married 28 Nov 1897 Ernest Marion Thompson (5 Feb 1875 near Franklin, Nebraska-_______); lived Bloomington, Nebraska. Children:

1. Paul Thompson born 9 Sept 1898 Bloomington, Nebraska; married 22 July 1934 Eugenie Hlava (28 Sept 1909-_______). Child:

1. Sandra Pauline Thompson born 23 Aug 1936.

2. Ruth Clare Thompson born 11 Feb 1900; married 20 Dec 1920 Boulder, Colorado to Clifford Robert Dolph; lived Maryhill Museum, Maryhill, Washington. Children:

1. Sarah Ruth Dolph born 22 Sept 1921 Council Bluffs, Iowa; married 6 Feb 1943 Moscow, Idaho, to Philip William Foraker born Montana.

2. Robert Edward Dolph born 3 June 1923 Tacoma, Washington; lived Portland, Oregon.

3. Richard Clifford Dolph born 26 Nov 1925 Tacoma, Washington; lived Salem, Oregon.

4. Philip Joseph Martin Dolph born 7 Nov 1927 Tacoma, Washington; married McMinnville, Oregon, 20 Dec 1950 Hazel Heath (14 Jan 1926-_______); lived Junction City, Oregon.

5. Norton Burleigh Dolph born 11 July 1935 Seattle, Washington; 1957 station at Condon, Oregon, with the army.

3. Daniel Burleigh Thompson born 13 July 1902; married New Bedford, Massachusetts, 29 Aug 1922 Dorothy Bradford; lived Omaha, Nebraska. Children:

1. James Thompson born 13 Apr 1923.

2. Alice Thompson born 30 May 1924; married 16 Mar 1942 _______ Phillips.

3. Shirley Thompson born 13 Oct 1928; married 6 Aug 1946 _______ Flemming.

4. Ernest Thompson born 8 Sept 1930; married _______ _______.

5. Paul Joel Thompson born 24 Jan 1932.

6. Robert Thompson born 24 Nov 1933.

7. Brian Thompson born 8 Oct 1941.

4. Lois Thompson born 8 Nov 1905; married 23 May 1927 Walter Pollman (5 Dec 1905-_______); lived Bloomington, Nebraska. Children:

1. Walter, Thompson, Jr. born 10 May 1928; died 31 Oct 1929.

2. Stanley Thompson born 17 Feb 1930; married _______ _______. Two children.

3. Margery Thompson born 1 Sept 1931; nurse.

5. John Thompson born 20 June 1907; marred 2 Apr 1943 Anna Swanson (30 Jan 1909-_______); lived Denver, Colorado.

6. Ernestine Thompson born 18 Apr 1911; died 22 Aug 1930 in a car accident.

7. Josephine Thompson born 17 Dec 1913; married Maryhill, Washington, 8 May 1949 John Pearson (6 Jan 1909-_______); lived Portland, Oregon.

8. Elda Mae Thompson born 17 May 1915; married 5 Aug 1941 Paul Reichard; lived San Diego, California.

17 Aug 1881: daughter Mabel Burleigh born near Republican City, Harlan County, Nebraska; died 30 Jan 1937 Hastings, Nebraska; married 14 Mar 1907 Sciotoville, Ohio, Clyde Batterson (22 Feb 1885 Bloomington, Nebraska-_______). Children:

1. Warren William Batterson 27 Dec 1909; married 14 Feb 1936 Omaha, Nebraska, to Victoria Marcott.

2. Grace Mildred Batterson 15 Jan 1912 Nebraska City, Nebraska; married Smith Center, Kansas, to Charles Irving Scudder.

3. Russell Wilson Batterson born 29 Aug 1913 Nebraska City, Nebraska.

4. Mabel Hope Batterson born 17 Mar 1916 Hastings, Nebraska; married 22 Mar 1942 Carl George Christensen

19 June 1909: died Bloomington, Franklin County, Nebraska.

Elzira was the only one of the family to move from Illinois. She said, “If you plant turnips on the same ground year after year you get mighty small turnips.” Because of her ill health, they rented the farm and started overland for Colorado, but stopped at Bloomington, Franklin County, Nebraska, later buying a farm in Harlan County, Nebraska.


Susan Yocum (daughter of George Washington and Rebecca (Powell) Yocum)

1803: born.

1848: died.
Sarah “Sally” Yocum (daughter of George Washington and Rebecca (Powell) Yocum)

12 Sept 1805: born Montgomery County, Kentucky.

no date: married George G. Howland.

10 Sept 1825: died.

Miss Yocum (daughter of George Washington and Rebecca (Powell) Yocum)

ca 1806: born Montgomery County, Kentucky.

Abel Yocum (son of George Washington and Rebecca (Powell) Yocum)

1808: born Montgomery County, Kentucky.

no date: married Montgomery County, Kentucky, Susan Frame.

26 Feb 1825: George, Sr. deeded 100 acres to his son Abel for one dollar. Stephen Yocom was the witness.

1 Mar 1825: George, Sr. and Rebecca Yocom deeded to Abel Yocom 132 acres for $300. George W. Yocom, Jr. was witness.

19 Aug 1841: Abel Yocum released Mitchell H. Woodward, for the sum of $792.25, from two separate mortgages, each for 100A of land. The first was land that Woodward lived on, dated 6 Apr 1840, and the other was dated 9 Feb 1841. Montgomery County, Kentucky, Deed Bk 20 p88.

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