Ellen Sullivan
Wife of William S. Kelly
Mother of Lucy and Mary Kelly
Taken Before Her Death in 1883
Photo Courtesy of Andrew Jackson
"My grandmother" was written on the photo by Lucy's eldest daughter, Genevieve Fulton.

The Kellys Go West

Prepared by Bob Sweeney

December 2008


Bob Sweeney is the great grandson of Daniel and Mary Leahy Kelly who came from Ireland to Kelly Hill in the middle 1800s.  Daniel, four of his brothers, one sister, and their aging father all emigrated over the course of perhaps 15 years.   They eventually settled, built homes and operated farms and other rural enterprises in or near Campbellville and Overton, Pennsylvania.  These two communities lie next to each other on the border of Sullivan and Bradford Counties in northern Pennsylvania.


The story told here presents a handwritten set of memoirs prepared in the 1930s by Ellen (“Nellie”) Kelly Bradley (1856-1945).  The daughter of James and Johanna Flynn Kelly, she was the niece of Edward Kelly’s great grandparents, and therefore would have been Edward’s third cousin, once removed.  Nellie Kelly’s mother, Johanna Flynn before marriage to James Kelly, was also Mary Ann Leahy Kelly’s aunt and also her sister-in-law, having married the older brother (James) of Mary Ann’s husband (Daniel).  Kelly, Leahy and Flynn were entwined by descent and marriage much more closely than the typical group of settler families in the 19th century. The amazing story presented here came about due to the unfortunate death of Ellen (Sullivan) Kelly **, whose picture is presented at the head of this page. The wife of Nellie's brother, William S. Kelly, she died in Colorado, where that Kelly family had gone to make their fortunes in 1880. When she died, William, known to his family and friends as "Will", was left with two orphans, Lucy and Mary, and turned to his sister Nellie back in Pennsylvania for help. The rest is told in the following tale. 

** Editor's Note: It has been speculated that Ellen Sullivan may have been a daughter of James and Hanora (Kelly) Sullivan, which would have meant she was married to her first cousin. While such marriages were not unobserved in Sullivan County in the 19th century, it would ahve been quite unusual if not beyond belief for first cousins in a devout Irish Catholic family to have so interrelated. Here is a commentary by Edward Kelly, provided in April 2009, on the matter:

I am indebted to History of Overton (1810-1910) by Clement F. Haverly for the information below and for my hypothesis:

John ("Yankee John") Sullivan of County Kerry, Ireland came to the United States in 1836 and lived first in western New York State where he peddled Yankee notions and earned his nickname. His wife was Mary Monahan of County Cork. The Sullivans came to Overton, PA in 1858 and moved to their nearby farm three years later. John died in 1877 at age 62; Mary died in 1876 at age 61. Their children were: Katherine (Mrs. John Callahan); Maggie (Margaret); Mary (Mrs. Thomas Coggins); John; Ellen; and Cornelius. Maggie and Cornelius as adults lived together in Towanda, PA. Presumably, neither Cornelius nor Maggie was married. Their brother, John, was a teacher and taught in Overton, PA in 1869-70. Their sister, Ellen, taught also in Overton, PA in 1874. Mary Kelly, daughter of James and Johanna Flynn Kelly, taught also in Overton, PA in 1872-73.

It is my hypothesis that it is this Ellen Sullivan who married William S. Kelly and that William's sister, Mary, may have arranged the match! I realize that a hypothesis is not a fact but offer this information as a research aid.

I continue to believe that William S. Kelly's first wife, Ellen Sullivan, would not have been the Ellen Sullivan who was the daughter of James and Hanora Kelly Sullivan because this second Ellen Sullivan and William S. Kelly were first cousins.

I do not know whether John ("Yankee John") Sullivan was related to James Sullivan, but I assume that there may be a relationship.

We are also deeply grateful to Edward Kelly for obtaining and providing both these original documents and many of the comments provided below.   Ed obtained them from a third cousin, Bernadette (Kelly) Tapella of Sunnyvale, California.   Bernadette is the granddaughter of James T. Kelly who was the first cousin of Nellie (Kelly) Bradley, the protagonist of our story.    Bernadette Kelly Tapella obtained the typed version of the story from Mary E. Falkenreck, a granddaughter of Nellie who still lived in Spokane in 2008, as an elderly woman in her 80’s.  


The typed version reproduced here contains an introductory paragraph and final paragraph clearly written by someone else, perhaps the unknown individual who typed Nellie’s words up from the handwritten original.  We have also provided annotations in brackets courtesy of Ed Kelly, so as to clarify relationships, historical facts and other relevant information.   He has also given us a partial genealogy for Nellie, her parents and her children, which can be found at the end of this narrative. Finally, Ed has offered a note at the end of the annotations section.

You may also want to consult other sources on the Kelly family. Here are six compelling sources:

The James T. Kelly Family Site
The Kelly Diaspora in Photos: John Fulton and Lucy Kelly
Leonard T. Kelly and Mabel Kerrick
The Kelly Reunion of 2006
Kelly and Related Family Burials
The Beirne Family History

You can also access a wealth of information about the history of Sullivan County, including additional information about the Kellys and the families with whome they intermarried and interacted, at the Sullivan County Genealogical Web Page.


With no further adieu, let us now go back to hear from Nellie Kelly about a time long past when Pennsylvania was being civilized and the Far West beckoned to men and women of resilience, courage and ambition.



Nellie (Kelly) Bradley
In Old Age
Photo Courtesy of Ken Beirne




(From her own notes)

Nellie Kelly Bradley- 1856-1945


            In 1883, a young lady named Nellie Kelly left her home in Pennsylvania for the far West.  Two weeks previously she had returned from Fall River, Massachusetts, where she had been visiting relatives.  A letter had arrived from a brother in Grand Junction, Colorado, bearing the heartbreaking news of the death of his fine wife, the loving mother of his two little girls.  He begged his sister to come and take care of his motherless babies, Lucy a year and a half *, and Mary not yet three.  This event changed the course of her life, for Nellie could not resist the plea of her brother.  It was against the advice of friends and relatives that she started on her long journey to assume her new charge in a distant and unknown part of the country.  April 6th brought her to her destination.
* Editor's Note: We now know from documentation provided by Andrew Jackson that Lucy was actually born in Leadville, Colorado on August 23, 1881. Here is Lucy Kelly's Baptismal Certificate.


(The story continues in Grandma’s own words)


            Now I will tell you something of my early life in Pennsylvania.  My father, James Kelly [1], came to this country from County Cork, Ireland, in 1842.  He was the first of his family in this faraway new country. He worked for a Mrs. Green who owned a large piece of land called Green’s settlement [2], not far from Dushore, Pennsylvania.  My father was an ambitious young man and was eager to have a home of his own.  Soon he bought several acres of land for himself, paying for it in work.  On one of his vacation trips to Towanda where he had some friends, among whom was William Flynn, he met Johanna Flynn [3], William’s sister.  The meeting proved to be love at first sight.  They arranged to be married in a few weeks when the priest would be coming through.  It would be four months before a priest would come again and my father would not wait that long, so anxious was he to begin their home.  Miss Flynn had come to America from Limerick near Cashel, Ireland [4], with her mother, three sisters and two brothers.  Her grandmother Twohy [5] was my father’s mother’s first cousin. 

            When in the early ‘40’s my grandfather Kelly came from Ireland with father’s three brothers to join my father in Pennsylvania [6], they settled in a place called Campbellsville [sic throughout original, but henceforth spelled correctly as Campbellville in this text], Sullivan County, PA.  Here they bought several hundred acres known as the Sarah Ames Keene tract.  Thus the families of my grandfather’s four sons grew up close together in the environs of Dushore and Campbellville, Pennsylvania.


            No, my dear children, as you have so often begged me to tell you stories of my childhood days in good old Pennsylvania, I will write down some my earliest memories.  Your mother was born in 1856 into an environment where sturdy Irish, German and English settlers worked hard to clear the forests and to build homes, churches, and schools.  They were happy in building for the future, that their children and grandchildren might enjoy the fruits of their labor.

            My earliest recollections are of happy, care-free childhood days.  I was the youngest of a family of six, and I loved the days when my dear mother hurried about the kitchen preparing dinner for a “logging bee” or a neighborhood gathering for husking corn.  Some evenings the relatives and neighbors came for an “apple-paring bee”.  On these occasions, after a couple of hours’ work preparing the apples for winter storage, they would all enjoy a pleasant evening of song and story-telling with their cider and doughnuts.  There were excellent singers in the group and my mother’s voice was one of the sweetest.  I can still hear her singing “Believe me if all these endearing young charms” and other songs popular at the time.

            My school days were very happy indeed, especially in the 7th and 8th grades, when I slipped gaily over the snow with my brother, Will, who helped me on the icy places down the long hill to the little schoolhouse in the valley.  It stood near the flour mill.  All the farmers around took their wheat for the flour they needed.  The wheat was ground by the old fashioned millstones.  A few privileged ones loved to go in and watch the grain come down into the big hopper and then down between the big old stones which made it fine while the coarse part sifted out.  Next we passed the big mill pond formed by some creeks flooding into it.  This mad a fine rink for skating when the ice was smooth.  The first few inches of snow were soon tracked down and we played games and danced.  Yes, the old-fashioned square dances which someone knew how to call.  I think we enjoyed them as much as the big parties in after years.  So much so that the big pupils from the school on the other hill who came at noon to the Post Office, seeing us, became so interested that they begged us to let them join in our fun.  It wasn’t long until they were down every day.  They soon began having dancing parties with their friends and the Methodist ban against dancing was removed by the will of an overwhelming majority.

            In due time I finished the grades.  For the few who would be teachers there was a five weeks’ Teachers’ Institute in the early fall to prepare for a teacher’s certificate.  However, I was privileged to have an extra year of preparation for teaching as my parents sent me to a convent boarding school, St. Joseph’s Academy [7], Binghamton, New York. Then after my session of Teachers’ Institute, I taught school for two years.  Mothers’ help in the home being unsatisfactory, she asked me to stay home until my brother got married.  In the meantime my two elder sisters had each taught for a few years.  Mary, the eldest, married and Johanna, the next, joined the Sisters of St. Joseph and became Sister Mary Evangelist [8].  Johanna had been in boarding school with these sisters in Binghamton, N. Y. In those days we did not hear much about vocations; I thought it enough to want to enter.  I was so lonesome for Johanna who had always been so good to her little sister that I decided to join her.  I bade my father and mother goodbye – for life, as I thought.  That summer I was outdoors in the beautiful grounds a good deal, as my charge was to water the flowers in and around the lovely grotto of Our Lady.   The months passed and I was very happy in my convent home.

            September was very hot that year and it was necessary for me to take my place in the classroom as there were not enough sisters.  It was not long until my health began to fail.  The doctor said being indoors all the time did not agree with me.  In a few months more I was so much worse that Mother called me to her office and told me kindly that I had tried but that was not my place and that there was something for me to do in the world.  She could not tell me what it was, but I would find it.  It was an awful shock to me, but there was nothing to do but go home. [9] So, I did, and I took care of my dear mother who was on her death bed.  Mother said that God had sent me as my sister Mary had too much to do.  The doctor said it would not help me to be in a sick room, but my mother was so patient and required so little waiting on that I was able to take care of her until her peaceful, happy death three months later.  She died on Washington’s birthday, 1882 [10].  As her Requiem Mass was sung I felt much better.  I knew that she was praying for me.

            The doctor had ordered a long walk each day and this I took, and improved so much that two months later I took care of my sister through a very serious illness.  All that summer I helped her with her little children.  In the early Fall my dear father said I should have a rest and insisted on my going to Massachusetts [11] to visit my mother’s people.  There was an excursion going and I intended to return with it.  My cousins begged that I stay for their daughter’s wedding the next month.  It was to be a big affair.  Then they wanted me to stay all winter, especially as there was a good opportunity to learn the millinery business, for which I always had a liking.  As I didn’t want to teach again, it would be nice to go later to my single brother in Pueblo, Colorado.  He wanted me to come and stay with him.  So it was settled that I work in the shop for the winter and spring seasons.  It was a pleasant millinery store and the head milliner said that I could soon operate a store of my own.

            Man proposes but God disposes – for on February 20th I received a letter which changed all my plans.  It was the heartbroken message from my married brother Will of the death of his wife [12].  He had gone the year before with his young wife and his two babies in the rush to Leadville, Colorado [13], only to find in a few months everything closed down.  Consequently he went with the first white settlers into the Grand Valley where the Ute Reservation was just opened for settlement.  He built his log cabin and then sent for his little family.  It was all so nice and happy for them until his wife got sick and died suddenly, leaving him heartbroken with his two little girls, Lucy, a year and a half * and Mary, three.  Will begged me to come and take care of his motherless little ones.  Thus was my whole life changed and I knew that this was what God wanted of me.  Even my sister in the convent, Sister Evangelist, wrote me to have our brother bring his children back to civilization.  This I knew he could not do, being settled there.
* Editor's Note: We now know from documentation provided by Andrew Jackson that Lucy was actually born in Leadville, Colorado on August 23, 1881. Here is Lucy Kelly's Baptismal Certificate.


From 1883 to 1887


            So I decided to go to my brother Will’s as soon as possible.  On the evening of February 22 [14], the first anniversary of my dear Mother’s death, my friends and relatives accompanied me to the big New York boat called “The Floating Palace”.  I was on my way home for a short visit – then on to Colorado.  Knowing that I would be sailing over the Sound just a year after that night I spent with my dying Mother I arranged for a Mass to be offered that morning.  On my arrival home I found two of my sister’s children with the measles.  There was an epidemic that winter of a form of measles that took many lives.  Whole families had been wiped out.  At once I knew it was my duty to help my sister until the danger was over.  With trust in God and making use of our Mother’s old-fashioned remedies the six children recovered.  On March 22nd I set out on the long journey to my new home in the West [15].

            Many sweet memories of my childhood days in dear old Pennsylvania went with me.  Never to be forgotten were they.  I recalled the times that Uncle Michael’s family and ours were tucked into a big sleigh with woolen quilts and heated stove wood to keep us from freezing for the three-mile drive behind an oxen team to Midnight Mass [22].  The little church was close to our Aunt Catherine’s home.  It was heavenly to see the Altar and all the church decorated with evergreens.  Aunt Catherine saw to the decorations.  In the summer my cousins gathered wild flowers but now there were the bright paper stars which they had made.  It was not a surprise when in later years a son and three daughters of Aunt Catherine’s offered themselves to work in the Master’s Vineyard [23].

            On arriving in Pueblo, Colorado, at 2:00 p.m. on March 25 [16], which was Easter that year, I was met by my brother Michael James.  I had not seen “Jim” for nearly fifteen years [25]. He had been thrown from his horse when he was young and the internal injuries resulting brought him to death’s door [24].  A noted physician in Philadelphia was consulted but nothing could be done.  My father asked the Sisters of Mercy in Towanda to send to France for some water from Lourdes.  My father made two sixteen-mile trips to see if it had come.  The Sisters promised to send it immediately on its receipt.  I shall never forget the thrill we had when my sister Mary announced at five o’clock in the morning that the water from Lourdes had arrived.  We all prayed at Jim’s bedside while Mother put a spoonful in his mouth while made the sign of the Cross on his side.  The pain subsided and he fell asleep.  At nine o’clock the next morning Jim came walking down the stairs for the first time in three months.  We all thanked our Blessed Mother for his cure.  Eagerly he went out to work in the harvest fields.  Some time later he fell from the roof of the barn.  His health being impaired my father thought it well for him to go to the West [27]. 

            But to return to my arrival.  I hardly recognized Jim as he had changed so much in the years.  Of course I had changed a great deal too.  It was a happy meeting.  Jim insisted that I stay with him for at least ten days.  He thought I should rest before going to my destination.  On April 4th I was on my way to Grand Valley [17].  I felt fine until we crossed the high Rocky Mountain range, when I became so ill I could not hold up my head.  My train arrived at Grand Junction several hours late.  My brother Will had to go home to the babies whom he had left with a kind woman.  He left word for the owner of the hotel to meet me.  His wife had offered to keep me until my brother would come in the morning.  I was soon resting comfortably and in the morning of the 6th of April, 1883, I looked out from my window on the second floor.  The hotel was the only building with two floors.  The sun was shining brightly on the white adobe soil dotted with greasewood and sagebrush.  The streets were laid out for the town and graded.  Water was running in the ditches along the streets and there had been shade trees planted.  These were mostly cottonwood.  The stores and law offices as well as real estate offices were tents.  The Post Office was a log cabin with flagstone for flooring.

            Will came early.  He was so glad that I had come.  As he had to stop at the blacksmith’s on the way home he took me to the smithy’s house to meet his wife, a kind German woman.  Before she was married she had lived on the next ranch with her brother.  She insisted on our staying for dinner.  Finally we got off and rode for two hours in a farm wagon.  I was glad it had a spring seat.  Through the Valley we went and then through desert land, with here and there a little log cabin, which I thought were sheep pens.  Presently Will said, “Now we can see my house”.  I saw only what I thought was a little larger pen.  Will drove up, helped me out, and went in with me to meet the woman who was taking care of the children.  Little Mary and baby Lucy were darlings.  They were a bit shy at first but soon became very fond of their Aunt Nellie, who loved them and cared for them as if they were her own.

            That evening when Will set out to put the team away I looked around at the bare log walls and began to cry.  Mrs. Ross, the woman in charge, said, “What would Mr. Kelly do now after all his sorrow if he saw that you are not satisfied and grieving?” I said, “He will never see me cry”, and he didn’t.  This was the beginning of a new life in different surroundings and conditions than I had ever known.  The food consisted mostly of dried fruits, pork salt side, potatoes and flour.  The bachelors made biscuits.  I made light bread.  Butter was so expensive and scarce that we made gravy from the fried pork.  This we called “Colorado Butter”.  You can imagine the change, coming from a farm home where we had plenty of butter, milk, cream, eggs and fresh fruits.  But that was not thought of then – only of making the little home more comfortable and attractive.  Sheets of canvas were sewed together for the walls and pretty ruffled curtains for the windows and the stove shined.  The latter was very important to Will Carleton’s “Out of the Old House Nancy”.  This room was parlor, kitchen and bedroom.  Will had built a bedroom for me.

            Mike Corcoran [18], our brother-in-law, came in the Fall.  He stayed with Will until his family, my sister and their children [26], came in the Spring [19].  Mike brought some mill-end prints from Massachusetts and since Will had the sewing machine from our dear old home I was kept so busy that there was no time for lonesomeness.  Making pretty little dresses and sunbonnets for Mary and Lucy was a delightful pastime, and their lovely complexions were protected from the sun.  It was a pleasant surprise to find them so fair.  Our teacher in Binghamton had complimented us on our complexions saying that the girls in the South and in the West had such dark skin.

            The most important need of the time was water to irrigate the land so that crops could be raised.  This was the chief topic of conversation among the settlers.  At this time what they called the “high line ditch” was under construction by a big company.  The water was taken from the river several miles above or east of Grand Junction.  The ditch was to be 40 miles long and 60 feet wide on top, 3 feet deep and 40 feet wide at the bottom.  It was a big work and several of the ranchmen had contracts for a mile each.  They were to be paid half cash and half in groceries and feed for the teams.  Eventually, the latter was all they got as the company failed.  At the time of my arrival Will and a partner were working on a mile contract and L. H. Bradley was working on his mile contract with men and teams.  The evening I came Will drove around by Mr. Bradley’s place to speak with him about the ditch.  Will went to the door and when he returned I said, “God pity the woman who lives in that lonely cabin!”  Will laughed and said, “He is not married and he is one of the finest young men in the valley.”  I did not meet Mr. Bradley for over two months.  It seemed that when he finished his contract, sold his team and paid the men he didn’t get a dollar for his work.  He used his own money to prove up his ranch.  This took a few weeks and very day he went to town on his nice little riding pony.  Will asked him to bring our mail, which he did as a neighborly act.  That is how I got acquainted with your father-to-be.  His ranch joined Will’s on the east.

            I mentioned that water was the greatest need, and so it was, for our bodily wants, food and living.  Nothing grew in that arid region without it.  And all that time our souls, our higher selves, were starving for the life of Grace which is nourished by Holy Mass and the Sacraments.  You may know then how happy we were when in July His Lordship, the Venerable Bishop of Denver, brought us a young French priest, Reverend Father Servant, to be our Pastor.  Father Servant had several other missions to tend from Montrose up in the mountains to Fruita down in the Valley.  At first we had a small house for our Church.  Then the Mission Society built a nice little Church and we had Mass on the first, second or third Sunday.  Will and I took turns at first riding on horseback to Mass as one had to stay with the children.  Lucy was too delicate to ride eight miles in a jolting lumber wagon.  Once I was a little late for confession.  Father was beginning to vest for Mass when I went up and knelt at the communion rail.  He came over and heard my confession in full view of the parishioners who were coming in but I didn’t mind it, so thankful was I for the great privilege of receiving the Sacraments, of which we had been deprived for so long.

            The year before, Will with several of his neighbors, had built a ditch large enough to cover their ranches along the river.  They named I the “Independent Ranchmens’ Ditch”.  The next year other settlers came and got ranches north and east of them.  They had no water for their land, so they began negotiating with former settlers to join them in taking out a new ditch several miles farther up the river.  The first settlers had several meetings as to the conditions for admitting these new people.  One leader who had been a school teacher in Wet Mountain Valley, Missouri, wrote out a long contract with all the “whereases and wherefores, of the aforesaid parties”, etc. and they couldn’t agree on anything.  Then a small group of men got together and asked Lew Bradley to write a contract which would be to the advantage of all concerned.  He wrote a plain, simple one to the point.  The new neighbors agreed to pay the old company $100 cash for the work done on their independent ditch and fifteen days’ work each for both parties to build their own ditch.  Everyone thought that was the most reasonable agreement, and all were satisfied.

            In the latter part of the summer of 1883 Lew Bradley proved up his ranch.  He was the first one in the Valley to do so but could get only a Receiver’s receipt as they didn’t have the Deeds ready.  In the meantime, Lew (your father) and I became good friends.  My brother Will encouraged him to come.  One evening I had an errand to a neighbor’s and he went with me.  It was a beautiful evening and on the way home he stopped, and taking my hand said he wanted me always, that he loved me and would take care of me.  I said, “No, Lew, if you feel that way, we must quit right now for you are not of my Faith and I could never marry out of the Church.”  He answered that I could do as I pleased about going to Church but that he could not join it.  I told him that I appreciated his frankness but that it would be impossible on my part and that he should not come any more, and that he must forget about it.  He did neither, yet I hoped he would be a Catholic.  I was sure he would be if he could see it rightly.  The next day Will said that he saw two tracks in the sand, one a No. 4 shoe and the other a laced boot, and he laughed.  I said “What do you think of Lew?”  He said there was no one in the valley he would rather have me go with if he were a Catholic.  I said, “Don’t you think he may be one some day?”  He said, “No.”  Lew Bradley was the best neighbor he had when Ella died.

            Mike Corcoran, my sister Mary’s husband, stayed all winter.  He helped Will get fence posts and rails to build a fence around his ranch.  Will, you know, sold our old home to Mike and Mary the year before Mother died, with the provisions that our parents would make their home there with all their needs taken care of, medical and otherwise, allowing them money for their personal use [20].  Our dear Mother did not live to use the money.  I told Mike what my friend Lew told me of his family.  The Bradleys were pioneers in Iowa.  His grandfather had nine sons, nearly all of whom had received a college education, for their father was well to do in those days before the War of Secession.  Lew’s father, Franklin, was the youngest.  In that pre-war period he did not go to college but married a school teacher, Miss Nancy Jane Humphrey, whose mother was a widow in good circumstances.  Lew told how he loved to visit his Grandmother Humphrey in her nice brick home near the Mississippi River.  She showed him the cradle in which he was rocked, that she had stored in the attic.  That was long after his Mother had died, leaving him a three-year old and his brother four or five.  His father had gone to war after that, also his four brothers.  Lew and his brother Henry, two years older, went to live their Grandpa and Grandma Bradley for a few years until his Grandma died.  Their niece kept house for them and Lew said that she as well as Grandma was so good to them.  After Grandma’s death, the Grandfather went to live with his son John who was editor of the San Ventura News in a town of that name in California.

            Arrangements had been made for the little boys to live with old friends of the family near Burlington, Iowa, by the name of Lattie.  They had come from Virginia and their family was all grown.  Mrs. Lattie was very good to them but Henry didn’t stay long and wanted Lew to go, too.  Henry was always getting Lew into trouble.  Once he played hooky from school and took Lew to play on the rafts in the river.  Lew fell in and would have drowned if a man had not saved him.  They were afraid to go home and stayed out until dark when they could sneak into the basement.  Henry made Lew keep quiet and they soon fell asleep.  The neighbors and the police who had been searching for them found them there.  The boys were given their supper and put to bed.  Lew wouldn’t leave Mrs. Lattie, who was like a mother to him.  After seven years his father married again and they came for the boys.  Mrs. Lattie would not let Lew go, and his father did not insist since he was having such good care.  In the meantime Henry went to live with his great Uncle Humphrey at the little town of Morning Sun, of which he owned the greater part, as well as several hundred acres on the Mississippi.  Lew told me all of this one Sunday sitting the shade of the cottonwoods with Mary and Lucy playing around us.

            When Lew finished High School he left Latties [sic] to seek his fortune.  Mrs. Lattie wept and gave him $40 for his immediate needs.  She begged him to come back before winter, which he did, and this was the last time he saw her.  He went to see is great uncle but Henry had gone elsewhere by that time.  His Uncle Humphrey like Lew and told him that if he would go to Texas for a year on a cattle ranch he would start him with a hundred head of cattle of his own.  But Lew was young and wanted to make his own way.  Years after we were married an old friend of Lew’s who knew his parents and relatives visited us.  He told Lew how foolish he was to leave relatives so well thought of and well to do; but Lew said that he was not sorry as he found such a good wife, and that they could get along independently of relatives.

            It was when Lew told me of his Mother’s death when he was but three and that he had never known a mother’s love nor a sister’s love, that I decided to try to make up for both.  He told me how he went to school at five, a spunky little boy who picked up swear words.  One day he had been in a fight and swore!  His teacher called him to her desk and said, “O Lewis, if your dear mother heard you what would she think of her little boy? She was a good Christian and a fine lady.”  He said he cried as if his heart would break, as no one had ever spoken of his mother before and he never forgot it.  His teacher, Milly Gibsen, had been a good friend of his mother’s.  

Since I gave Lew no encouragement he left for Denver. He thought that I would become interested in one of the Irish Catholic bachelors. Those were lonesome months for me.   What a surprise it was then to see him drive into the yard on the 27th of January, 1884!   He jumped off a nice bay horse. He had bought a team and wagon, also farm utensils to begin farming.   I was so glad to see him, although I knew there was a big problem ahead. The children were delighted to see Mr. Bradley. He began just where he left off, talking about when we would be married.  I could not think about it as my sister Mary and her family were coming out in the spring and Lent was close.  I wrote to my sister in the convent telling her about Lew and how much I thought of

him but could not think of marrying one not of my Faith,  as one's life work would be hard enough rearing children right when both parents were of the some faith.  Sister Evangelist wrote me telling me not to be in a hurry but to join her in a 30 day prayer. This I did.

All the men folks were busy with the contracts and working on ditches. Imagine my surprise when the morning after the novena finished Lew came all beaming and happy, saying, "Nell, I can be a Catholic! I dreamed last night that I had joined the Church, and I was so happy.   It wasn't at all as I thought it would be.  That feeling that I couldn't is gone and I know I can be a Catholic". He went right to Grand Junction to see Father Servant. His instructions began but were meager because of his work.  He studied his catechism by the light of a candle in his camp at night.  Father Servant liked Lew from the start and so our plans were made to be married when Mary came.  Although now he was to be a Catholic I still prayed to our Lord Who alone knows the future - that if a1 soul would ever be lost by our union that it might never take place.  I asked that I might die first.

I was so happy when Lew received the gift of Faith and I thanked God [28]. It was truly my good sister's prayers. The worst was over I thought, not knowing the problems and heartaches ahead, through misunderstandings and a lack of tact on my part. I never thought of anything else and neither did Lew  than that my little girls would go home with me. My first disappointment was  the delay in Mary's coming.  Lew said that he had made all the arrangements for the wedding with Father Servant, and with the witnesses for April 14, Easter Monday.   Lew said that we could then stay until Mary arrived.  I was very glad for that as I wanted everything as nice as possible when they arrived. The house cleaning, which consisted of taking down the white lining on the walls, washing and replacing it, also the little white ruffled window curtains, was done.  Everything looked fresh and nice.


Dear children, I would rather pass over these few months for they were so pain­ful to me and fraught with misunderstandings about waste ways, boundary lines, etc.  Then there was my own heartache in the disappointment over my plans for Mary and Lucy.  I thought of nothing but of keeping them. LewI thought that Will would help him build an extra room for them. As soon as  Mary came we would take them home and make them comfortable.  Mary would have her six with the two stepsons and Theresa, the little girl whom our mother reared since she was 18 months old.  Mary, as I told you, was delayed again, and was to arrive on the day planned for our wedding. Then Lew told me that he could and would become a Catholic if it could be after the wedding, for it seemed that he was joining the Church to get the girl.  I told him that those who taunted him were without understanding and that we could not be married with a Nuptial Mass unless he were baptized.  So Law consented. He was baptized on Holy Saturday and we were married on Easter Monday at 9:00 o'clock with only the witnesses present [21].  Will had only three days to finish his ditch and could not be there without forfeiting his right.  I explained that Mrs.  Ross would care for the children while I was gone the next morning.  Will and Mike left early the next morning and Lew took me to town.  After Mass, Law took us all to the hotel for a good meal, my breakfast and dinner for the others. After breakfast I want home with my bridesmaid, Mrs. Chipman, and Lew and his best man, Joe Thomson, stopped in town.  They returned with two pair of lovely kid gloves, one for me and one for my bridesmaid.  As we left home that morning the sky was clear, a bright sunny day, but on the way home there came a terrible downpour.  The team could hardly face it.  Lew tucked the robe all around me. By the time we were home the storm had passed as fast as it had come and there was not a cloud to be seen, only a lovely sunset.  Lew said it was a forecast of our lives, and that after the storms, would come a calm bright evening of life.  Such it was for him, and I hope it will be for me. And how much we did get out of life and how much we enjoyed each little darling who came to our modest but happy home.  I heard a woman say that after she pronounced her marriage vows she would give the world to be free again.  Not so with your mother. The beau­tiful service of the Nuptial Mass, the prayers, instructions and all made me very happy. I knew that Lew would help me in the problems of life, and its future joys and sorrows had no dread for me.  I began my household duties with great pleasure and took care of Mary and Lucy until Mary got there. The first sorrow of my married 1ife was when Wi11 decided to keep the children with him.

That summer passed happily and quickly. We rode horseback to Mass every Sun­day.   My brother Jim in Pueblo sent me a side saddle which ladies rode then.  I made myself a riding skirt and I felt very gay galloping off with my husband to Grand Junction and sometimes down the Valley to Fruita to see friends.


A school house for our district was being built and the director or clerk asked us to board the teacher. I forgot to say that I was hired the year before to teach in the first school in the Valley at Fruita. I could get no place to board where I could have Mary and Lucy with me, so Hr. Hughes who hired me had to teach himself.  It was when Lew was in Denver.  Now Lew built an addition, a nice pleasant room for the teacher, a Miss Faith Watkins. There had been some ill feeling between two members of the board as to where the teacher would live. Mrs. Slocum wanted to board her and they had built a room, too.  However, Mr. Ross, the clerk, gave Law a written order to get her.  That winter found me quite busy trying to fix something different every day for my husband and the teacher. Miss Watkins, being a pioneer herself, was very easily pleased. She had come overland in a covered wagon.  It seems that when they had to stay a few months in a village on account of Indian raids her mother would have school for the children.  One time when Lew was on the Grand Jury the teacher would say, "Mrs. Bradley, don’t bather cooking, we can have bread and milk."  We had two cows and plenty of milk, cream, butter and cottage cheese.  I forgot to say that that first year Miss Watkins taught the children in her room until the school was ready.  The next year Mr. Ross wanted to board the teacher but she pre­ferred coming back to us.

Before Spring I was, as Will Carleton put it in "Out of the Old House, Nancy, Into the New", making clothes for neither one of us. These happy expectant days had their worries, too.  The neighbor on the west was not willing that the waste way from the new ditch should follow the natural course the water from the hills made in a southwestern direction through our farm and part of the farm to the east and then through a corner of his to the river on the west.  He insisted that where it reached his land between us that it should follow that line to the river, even though a ditch would have to be dug all the way.  The land was higher there and if the ditch were dug it would let the river run back an our farm, thus drowning us out.  He would not arbitrate or listen to reason but started work. Lew had to go to town and get an injunction to stop them. A law suit was started at great expense. The German blacksmith said, "Bradley, if you lose that suit you have lost out for sure" meaning of course that Lew would be financially ruined. You can imagine my anxiety for a week and especially the day of the suit, which was Good Friday. How badly I felt and spent the day through 3:00 o’clock praying for Lew. When he had not come home that evening I did his chores and got supper, thinking he would come. Miss Watkins insisted on staying up with me.  It was after midnight that Lew came. They had stayed until the verdict was given. It was in Lew's favor.  The cheering and talking afterwards made him so late. Foolishly I thought something had happened to him on his way home.

The next two months were busy ones, Lew with his planting and farm work, I sewing en pretty little dresses for the newcomer whom we already loved. He came to bless our home on July 3, 1885 [29]. Yes, your brother Joe first saw the light in a log cabin in Grand Valley. So  many of our great statesmen were born, as you know, in log cabins. We were like two children looking at his tiny fingers and toes. His name would be Joseph for the good St. Joseph, although it was different from anyone on either side of the family.  Lew was satisfied, for his friend and best man at our wedding was Joseph Thompson.  My folks would never understand how I could be happy

in such a lonely place.  One Sunday was a bright sunny day. Miss Watkins had put on my sunbonnet and gone away out in the field where she discovered an old tree that served as a chair while she read her book. I was surprised the next day to see my dear old Father, who had come West and was living with Mike's family. He had come to see how I was as the children had said they saw me away down by the river crying. They must have seen my sunbonnet, and they didn't come close enough to see Miss Watkin's book.  Lew and I were very contented playing with our little boy and plan­ning for the future.

In the Fall w moved all of our buildings, our nice two-room cabin, a horse barn and cattle barns and chicken house. We were settled and comfortable before Miss Watkins returned. She thought our baby was wonderful and said it was too bad. to waste that complexion on a boy. (Her own wasn't very satisfactory at the time.) The winter passed very pleasantly. Once when we were in town Father Servant came to Lew and said that he wanted to ride down the Valley with us.  On the way he said, "Lew, I haven’t a cent to live on." Lew answered, "Father, I haven' t much but I will divide with you." He told us that he often went on one meal a day.  Lew slipped a bill into his hand and asked him to stay with us that night.  Next day he went on down to the Sullivan boys' quarters where he also was sure of help.


That spring the Corcorans, my sister Mary's family moved to their own home [30].  Mike had bought a farm three miles west of Grand Junction and wanted to start farming.  They left little Theresa (Tessie, as we called her), ten years old now, as she was so fond of Mary and Lucy.  I often carried Joe through the fields a half mile to see them.  She learned to make cookies, etc. from me and loved to come to our house. Will found it very difficult after the Corcorans left.  He went to Denver and told the priest there that he would like to get married again so that his children would have a mother.   Father told him that he knew a fine Catholic woman who had come from St. Louis and he would have him meet her. Both were agreeably pleased with each other and so after a short correspondence she, Genevieve Daley [31], came to Grand Junction and they were married.  I  went to see her and liked her very much.  We invited them for Sunday dinner and we had such a good visit.  Will's wife thought Joe the cutest baby she had ever seen.  From that time Aunt Jennie always liked Joe.

Another incident of that summer was when Joe was six weeks old.  I saw a carriage drive up MissWatkins, her sister with her husband, and a friend whom they were showing the beautiful Valley of the Grand. They stopped to see me for a few minutes saying they would stop for a longer visit on their return later. You may be sure the laundry was quickly finished. Law killed two young roosters and helped me with the cleaning as all the bedding was on the line. By the time they returned everything was spic and span even the baby.  Miss Watkins was so eager to see him and loved to play and sing for him on her return in the Fall.  It was pleasant having her but that winter was her last as she went back to Montrose.   Like so many of our early acquaintances she was lost to us. By the way, the visitors that day said our pioneer dinner was the best they had ever eaten.  We had chicken pie, mashed potatoes, sliced ripe tomatoes, home made bread and applesauce.


FALL OF 1886

That summer passed quickly. Jennie took good care of Mary and Lucy making their clothes. I was lonesome not having the care of them. They still loved their Aunt Nellie and would be happy when Grandpa would bring them to see me. Lew was Road Overseer and away a few days of the week on the road with his gang of men, building, repairing, etc. The men of the Valley had voted him in as Overseer. On September first he said to me, "Don’t do too much today", as he kissed me goodby.  Both thought that it might be a whole month before he returned. Lonesome as that made me I knew I had to do something.  First I got Joe to bed as 1 thought I could run to Will’s and be back. I started out but thought I should go back. A cowboy offered to take a message for me. Back to the house I went and got into bed with the baby. He was happy and contented with his mother beside him. Jennie was so

good and came immediately. She said, "Nellie, what can I do? You are sick.”  I said "Only go home and send Will for Lew." While we were talking Lew came in. It had rained so hard he had told the men to go home.  How thankful I was! He got a nurse and then took Jennie home. Lew then went for the doctor who came a little later and stayed all night, as did Mrs. Christopher and Aunt Jennie.  About 4 a.m. they had a new baby boy to dress. He was a beautiful baby but was not to stay with us for long. After the Methodist nurse had repeated the words of Baptism after me and poured the water over his little forehead at the same time his soul went back to God [32]. Papa and I held out hopes for a while but when the little moan stopped, he did everything he could to comfort me. He said that I must think of myself, of little Joe and of him, that our little darling was happy. The neighbors were so good.  Mrs. Slocum did up Joe's prettiest dress, trimmed in lace, and when Mr. Slocum went  to town for the casket, Papa telling him to get the nicest one he could, he told Joe Farrell about our loss. Joe told his wife (the Miss Sheedy who came with the Corcorans to the West) to go at once to Nellie, saying he would not let her go with the baby if it were anyone else but the Bradley’s.  Mrs. Farrell was such a comfort to me, staying two days after the funeral. Those were lonely days after our little darling had gone to Heaven, although I had Joe and his Papa to encourage me until I was up again and able to do my work. Then the word came that Mrs. Chipman was dead and had left a little boy and a little girl. She was my friend and bridesmaid so we went at once to the funeral which was at the Church.   When we got there I thought my heart would break. Her husband who was not a Catholic had never let her to go [to] Mass. Fortunately for the little ones her mother took them home with her to Wisconsin and they were brought up in the faith.

We began planning to move to town, as Lew saw it would take years to make farming profitable in that place. Everyone who could was freighting to the new town of Glenwood Springs, one hundred miles up the Grand River, so we sold our ranches and bought a nice little cottage on the opposite corner from our little Church.  Lew knew what a comfort this would be to me when he was away on the freight­ing trips he planned.  He bought two teams of mules, a suitable covered wagon and a trailer which was another wagon without a top fastened behind the other. His first load was on February 2.  How happy I was to see him on his return! He said, "0, Nell, if I only knew what those mountain roads were I would have hesitated to go over them. On climbing some of the steep hills and nearing the top and looking into space it seemed like the jumping off place. I said to myself, I must go on, no room even to turn. Then, a little farther up the road we turned around a huge rock and clung to the side of the mountain, slipping down to a lovely valley.”  So we moved to our new home in Grand Junction on the comer of Third and White [33].  The next day Papa had to leave with another load. He bought his own freight and made $200 each trip. Everything had to be freighted a hundred miles over the mountains before the railroads were built [35].


Although Papa had to leave on March 2, the day after moving into our new home, I was happy and busy fixing the curtains, lanbrequins at the top, so that everything would be spic and span when he got back. Just at the time he said he would come, a day earlier than any other freighter, as I stood at the back door watching, I saw the buckskin mules turning the comer. How little Joe clapped his hands for joy to see Papa coming. That June was very hot in Grand Junction and Papa said, "0, Nell, I wish you could see how nice and green everything is up in the mountains, the cool streams, etc.  I said, "Can't we go with you next time?" He always stayed a few days to rest the teams. He said, "Yes, dear, I think that you would enjoy it and we will take more time.”   It was a critical time for me to go on such a journey, three months before you were born, Bessie.  Perhaps this had something to do with

the heroic courage you have shown in later years.  It was lots of fun getting ready for the trip, packing the lunch box, etc.  We would buy bread, milk and eggs at the ranches along in the valley.   We started bright and early that morning.  I enjoyed riding up on the spring seat with Joe between us.  We  camped that evening in a ten-mile canyon about thirty miles from home and as many miles to the next turn  After a good supper which Papa prepared over the campfire, he fixed my bed in the canvas topped wagon. I was naturally tired from the long ride in a jolting wagon.   I fell asleep.   When I awoke the sun was shining, the birds were singing and Joe was talking to Papa. Breakfast was ready by the fire.  We thoroughly enjoyed it there under the trees.  Soon we were on our way again through lovely valleys and winding slopes towards the river. At one place the road bed was cut through a smooth slope.  Riding on a high spring seat and looking down that smooth slope of rock for hundreds of feet would give a 20th century adventurer plenty of thrills.  While the sun was still high the road wound up a sloping hill. At the top was a pretty little grove of trees. As Lew turned the teams in there I said, “What is this?" "Why?"  He said "Mama, we are going to camp here. You must not be as tired as you were last night.”  We had a long evening and a good night's rest.  We didn't have any more thrilling experiences except a few ravines where we went down so far to a log bridge with the water many feet below it. Once the head team balked and refused to pull up the hill. Papa knew they could, so Joe and I got out while he unhitched the team and gave them a thrashing. One of them was like a spoiled child.  As soon as Papa took up the reins, away they went up the hill.  Finally we came to Glenwood Springs.  Lew got out and brought back Tom Keene, a blacksmith from Grand Junction.  We were to return to his home with him while Papa took care of the business. After a good rest for two nights and a day we started home.  With no heavy load we travelled much faster and along a level stretch of road I drove while Papa played the mouth harp.  We were grateful to reach home safely. In July Lew finished his freighting as the railroad was finished into Glenwood, and after a few weeks rest at home went

up into the Ouray country where he got a tie contract for the railroad. However, before beginning that work he tried hauling ore down Mt. Sniffles. His was not an ore wagon and coming down the steep mountain the brake didn't hold.  He saw it was going over the brink and quickly pulled the leaders to the upper side while he jumped for his life.   If the wheel team and wagon weren't stopped by two big trees on a flat rock they would have rolled down hundreds of feet into the river. One of his team was his big black horse "Major".  He was lying on the rock with the mule above him so Lew sat on Major's head to keep him from trying to get up. If he had he would be gone.  He held him until two freighters who were behind him got chains and ropes with which they got the mule up and then the horse. He sold the horse for $200 the next day.  That finished ore hauling. 

A Denver man had the tie contract and had hi red several men and teams to haul for him. Lew thought he would try it, too. When it came time to pay his men this man went to Denver.  Lew didn't like the way the man was acting so he went to Ouray the next morning and wired the company at Denver to stop payment until he settled with these men. The fellow was to leave shortly for other parts.  They caught him on [sic] time or the men would have lost their money. They were very grateful and glad when the company turned the contract over to Mr. Bradley. All this time little Joe and his mother were lonesome, for Papa thought he could be finished before winter. A practical nurse was staying with me and everything was ready for another little darling. When Mrs. Layton wrote to Mr. Bradley for me telling him of his little daughter, she told him that he would have a letter from me within a week. You can imagine how happy and proud he was to have a little girl baby. Bessie [34], I think you have the lovely letter he wrote, in which he said her name should be Nellie. Of course I thought that our first girl should be Mary after our Blessed Mother, and also Elizabeth. Papa was pleased with Mary Elizabeth as he had a sister Bessie.  I thought we would call her Bessie while she was little. For some reason I did not improve.   The doctor said it was because my husband was away.  However, when 1 was threatened with blood poisoning they sent for him at once.  Papa, thinking from Mrs. Layton's letter that all was well, did not come the five miles to the Post Office until time for my letter and to have the horses shod.  When he read the letter written a week before to come home he asked when the next train would leave. He was told in five minutes. He ran to the shop and told the hired man to take the teams back to camp for he was called home and got back to the train on time. Looking again at the letter and seeing .that it was written the week before he knew that I must be better and breathed more easily.  When the train stopped at Montrose he had to buy himself a coat as he came from the camp without one. You may be sure we were both happy when he reached home at midnight - me to see him, and he that I was out of danger. I improved so fast that in the few days he could stay I was able to be up and around.   We were so happy over our little darling daughter and Joe was very proud of his baby sister.

Although 1 had more to do now to occupy my time still Joe and mother were very lonely when Papa had to go back.  I told him that if he were gone very long we would come up into the mountains to see him.  He said, "Alright, Mama, but I hope to be through in a month or so." After five weeks he saw that it was going to take longer then he had expected, to be patient, etc., which was very hard now that I was feeling so well and the baby too.  When a German lady, Mrs. Kiefer, the one I had said the prayers for the dying for two years before, came to stay a few days with me in order to attend the County Fair being held in Grand Junction, I told her my plans to go to Ouray. She said, "Do not plan to take the baby up into the mountains until she is six weeks old[“]. I made the arrangements to leave the house ready for rent if necessary and packed the trunk with changes for the baby and for myself with enough dishes, etc. for camping. I wrote to Lew what Mrs. Kiefer had said telling him that now Bessie was six weeks old and that I was coming.  I missed getting his letter telling me what to bring, etc. just as I had done.  My good neighbor, Mrs. Farrell, helped me, and her husband came in the evening and carried the baby to their house where they said

I should spend the night until twelve o'clock when the train would leave. They in­sisted that I lie down and rest saying they would call me in plenty of time. This they did and had a nice hot lunch ready for us.  Matt, her husband, carried the baby (while she helped me) to the depot which was but four blocks away. On arriving we learned that the train was two hours late. It was very cold for the 21st of October but there was soon a warm fire in the uncomfortable waiting room. When the train did come a travelling man took my bag and Joe to the car. There was plenty of room so I turned the seat over in front of me for little Joe to lie on and the baby beside me. Joe went right to sleep when the train started, but at each stop would sit up and

say, "Papa now?"  When I would say "Not yet, dear", he would lie down and go to sleep until the next stop.  Before arriving, the man across the aisle asked if someone would meet me.  I said my husband would be there if he received my letter.  He asked what I would do if he didn’t come.  I said that I would go to the hotel and wait for him. As the train stopped he quickly came to assist me with the children.  All at once Joe screamed, “Papa, Papa!” Lew had just come in the door with a happy smile on his face.  I didn’t see any more of the man, but Lew knew him and thanked him.  He said it was a Mr. Wood, a big lumber man in that country and highly respected.  I forgot to say how interested everyone in the car was in that dear cute baby who was so good and looked around so brightly when I took her up in my arms.  Papa was so glad to see us.  He had rented a house in the Valley not far from Verdans, where he got the bread, butter, milk, eggs, etc. The owners were away for the summer.  They told me one day that I had a husband to be proud of – how he went to Dallas five miles away after a hard day’s work to get my letters and how anxious he was when I was sick.

It was a lovely fall for nearly two months. Papa had his contract finished in time for us to get home before Christmas but he had to wait for the Inspector from Denver to accept the ties. The Inspector did not come until three days before Christ­mas.  The weather turned extremely cold so when Papa came home that day he said, "Everything is O.K.,  but Mama dear, do you think that you could take the children in this weather that long distance? It would take three days." I said, "My dear, hard as it is not to go with you, for the sake of the babies I rust give up going.”  So we went to Verdans and Lew made arrangements for me to board with a family until he got back. Some Catholic friends would take me to Mass at Ouray at Christmas. They would take care of the babies for me in the meantime. That night the weather mod­erated and in the morning the sun was shining and vie thought it would be warm enough

so I said, "O, Papa, let us go with you." He answered, "Alright, we will stop early at some valley home." So we started off gaily as we put the baby with Joe back of the seat in our bedding under the canopy while I sat up in the spring seat with Papa.  We began early in the afternoon trying to find a lodging, but no one wanted travelers when they were preparing for Christmas. So we went on until we reached the Govern­ment Post, a few miles from Montrose. We thought surely that there would be a hotel there, but we found none. The man told us that there was a family that had their home while in the army, a Mr. Blue, and he showed Lew the house. He could scarcely see it as it was getting so dark and very much colder.  While he was talking with the woman at the door my poor baby began to cry with the cold, and Joe who had been so good and brave now began to cry too. When the woman, God bless her, heard the cries of the little ones she said, "Bring in these babies at once, they are freezing,” and they were. I held the baby close but was so cold myself. I never felt anything nearer the joy of Heaven than when sitting before a good fire and getting the children warm. The lady then told me that they were going to the Christmas Ball at the Post, that they had eaten their dinner, and then kindly showed the steaks and vegetables to me so that we could prepare for ourselves.  We were glad to do it.  How we enjoyed that meal in that nice warm home. Of course we put everything away and washed up the dishes. In the morning they gave us a good breakfast. They did not want to charge us anything but Lew was very glad to pay them and they gave us a hearty invitation to come again.


As it was several degrees warmer and a pleasant morning we drove to Montrose in time for dinner at the Cottage Inn, a nice little hotel where we expected to stay over Christmas so we could go to Mass.  The landlady did not know about Mass but asked the druggist's wife who was a Catholic. She said that there would be no Mass in Montrose since the Father from Grand Junction had been there the week before.  You can imagine our disappointment but we decided to stay there since we could not get to Grand Junction on time. So we did some shopping that afternoon and Christmas morn­ing started again on our homeward journey. Papa wanted me to stay there but I again persuaded him to let us go with him but only after my promising to sit in the back under cover with Joe and the baby. As a consequence when we got to Delta I was sick to die from the closeness and could hardly hold the baby. The large building with a hotel sign proved to be vacant except for a woman whose sister and children were visiting.  They were in the midst of a big Christmas party. Lew said, “You must let us stop as my wife is sick and the children are cold." She said, "Come in," and helped me to a big easy chair before a good fire, where almost unconscious I rested. Soon I could take some hot tea. Next morning Lew said, "Mama, this settles it.  I have found a nice new  hotel near the depot. You will be comfortable there until tomorrow evening when the train comes at 6 p.m. By ten o'clock you wi11 be home, It will give me time to meet you there."  Feeling quite subdued and willing to obey, I stayed. Joe enjoyed running in the halls and was so cute that everyone liked him.  Just as we finished dinner the next evening we heard the train whistle. The children and the grips were ready and willing hands helped us to get to the station on time. In a few minutes we were winding down the bank of the Guris River on the last lap of our home­ward journey after a two months stay with Papa up in the mountains.  Meanwhile he had hurried home, arriving in time to get our good neighbor to help him put down the rug in the living room and to set up a new parlor heater.  Everything was nice and the house warm when he rushed to the depot just as we arrived.  What a surprise it was and how happy we were to be home in our dear little cottage. "0, Papa," I said, "I never want to go to the mountains again." "Alright, Mama, we will stay here!"


Our first summer in the Silver City brought us many disappointments which prob­ably were a foreshadowing of the trials we would have there in the years to come. The very first contract Papa got was with a bachelor, an old timer.  When Law wonted a written contract, Mr. Yankey, the President of the mine, said, "Ch, no, it isn't necessary. I've known this man for twenty years!" Law answered that he didn’t  want this man to draw the money when this work was done as he himself  had the greater ex­pense keeping himself and his teams while coming down the mountain every night in order to be home with his family. Every morning he would drive up again, bringing his

lunch with him while the other man boarded at the mine.  The day the work was finished Papa went to the office again.  Mr. Yankey had gone to Denver. The next day he re­turned to the office only to be told that Mr. X came the night before and got the money to pay Mr. Bradley.  Well, the man had gone with the money and never returned to Aspen.  After wiring in every direction to no avail, Mr. Yankey cooly [sic] said that he would pay half of Papa's share. To get it through the courts would cost more than he received so Lew practically had to accept, and losing half of his contract money.  The mine was turning out $50,000 a month.  Mr. Duncan Wright, the cashier at the time, bought the mine the next year through rich relatives in the East for a million dollars.

A few weeks after our first financial disappointment Lew had n man helping him with some grade work on the street near where he was building our house. The work was close to a four foot deep flume which ran full and swiftly to the Power and Light house. It was the 26th of June when the water was very high in the river near by.  Lew had to go to town on business for a neighbor. He had told the hired man not to allow the mules to step on top of the flume as they would break through the boards hidden by the dirt over them. Before Lew returned I heard screams and looked out.  The man was yelling for help and holding the lines of one mule while the other was out of sight in the flume.  Within a few minutes twenty miners were there to help but did not know what to do. I saw Papa coming running. He told a man to run and shut off the head gate. Then he quickly got chains and with the help of the men and the one mule the fine big mule was pulled out on the ground but it was too late as he was dead.  Lew sent for the overseer who told him that he would not collect one dollar on his $150 animal as the man was driving him when he got on the flume. If he had been loose and got on himself they would have had to pay, as it was not safe. That was the second loss but we had much to thank God for as a few weeks later an immeasurable loss was prevented. After the mule's drowning the water company had the cover taken off and there was the water gushing at the foot of a little hill below us. I had Joe

wheeling Bessie in her buggy on the other side while I was getting dinner.  Joe came in and said, “Where is the buggy?”  I ran to the door just in time to see it starting down, but a tent rope had stopped it or she would have been whirling down the flume. You may be sure that nothing else was thought of that night but our happiness in thanking God for our baby's being saved. Lew shortly afterwards got the contract for covering the flume, thereby making $100.

The summer passed quickly and I was so interested watching the carpenter build our new home. Lew saved a lot by helping as the cost of labor was high at that time. The house was ready for us to move into it by October 10 and how happy we were to have such a nice comfortable home. Lew was busy starting a wood yard. He bought a wood machine for $40 and spent as much more in making it over. Then he sent to Denver for a circular saw, after which he bought 100 cords of wood up in the mountains, five miles up the Roaring Fork. It was cut in logs and a chute built to bring it

down. The machine was ready so there was a great pile of logs in a vacant lot back of the house by early spring. Wood, which was in great demand, was ready to sell.


During all of these past months I was preparing for the little expected one who arrived on March 6, 1889. How happy we were to have another boy! [36],   Joe now had a little brother again and Bessie loved to come to the bed to see the little baby. She was so sweet and good about the new arrival! Having such a good nurse I got along very well, and our little darling was so well and strong that in a few weeks we could take him to Church to receive the holy sacrament of Baptism. Now he was a child of God and had two good patron saints, Louis and Francis, to pray for him in his spiritual needs. That spring I was busy fixing up our new front yard with flower beds, etc.  In July, the raspberry season, some people hired Papa to take them to the east fork of Snowmass Creek. In the sloping valley between two mountain ridges covered with raspberry bushes loaded with luscious fruit was their destination. It was eleven miles from Aspen over rough mountain roads until you came to the last big hill where the road zigzagged down to the Creek, then for a mile south through the prettiest little valley to the east fork, a small stream trickling down the mountain and tumb­ling into the mother stream.  Up that east fork was where the berry pickers went.  Here they would camp for a few days.  A mile up the main stream was a little mining prospect.  A company was running a steel drill at a point on a mineral vein which had been discovered to contain gold.  While Papa was there he made some observations of the district and found that the vein they were working crossed Snowmass Creek and up to the East Fork right through the berry hillside.  He saw that it was the same for­mation and he traced it to the top of the ridge where it made a sharp turn to the south. Right at that point he marked the place to sink a shaft and then hired a man, George Papn [sic], whom he knew in Grand Junction, to help him do the work. Ten feet down Papa gathered some of the dirt and sent it to Denver to be assayed.  It was 20% gold. While this was low grade he knew there was a big vein of it. He felt so good about it that he told a Mr. John Goodwin, a real estate man, whom he thought he could trust, all about his find saying that he would make him an equal partner if he paid for the assaying and would help him with the work.  Mr. Goodwin gladly consented and talked so enthusiastically one evening at our home.  For some unknown reason the assays were never as good as the first ones.  At that time their mutual friend, Mel Carr, bought a small interest for $50.   $25 was all that Papa ever got out of it.  Mr. Goodwin said that they had better not sell any more. A few mornings after this Papa called me to the window. "Mama," he said, "see that man just going out of sight on horseback?” It was a man equipped with a prospecting outfit and with snow-shoes as there had been a fall of snow.  Mr. Goodwin has sent him out there without my knowledge to make further locations which would give him controlling interest!  Papa was sad for he had thought Mr. Goodwin a man of principle.   Then he added, "They will be disappointed as according to Goodwin's instructions they will locate straight ahead at that point where the vein turn south." This proved true and Mr. Goodwin dropped the enterprise saying anything further about it.  Papa was glad to be rid of such a partner.  He felt sure that the ore was there waiting for future development.  The property where the steam drill was working had been patterned by the company.  Soon they took the drill and left.

1889 and 1890

Conditions became worse in the mining industry [37]. The mines in Aspen shut down and people had to move away by the hundred. Their deserted homes could not be sold. The banks, with the exception of one, closed as did many business houses. Everyone who could was leaving, but Papa thought it only a temporary depression. He had faith in the future mines at Snowmass and so bought the ranch which comprised that pretty little valley at the foot of the mountain. It was the only place for a town site when the mines were working. I was happy in planning for a little Church where the children could help me with the decorations. The wild flowers were so beautiful and colorful, especially the Colorado columbine. I would take care of the Church as did my Aunt Catherine in dear old Pennsylvania.

In June, 1890, with hearts full of joyful hopes for the future we got ready to move to Snowmass to live in a log cabin again as we had in Grand Junction seven years before [38]. We rented our nice comfortable house and with our three children, baby Louis being only fifteen months old, started on our journey to our new home. I was happy and courageous until we reached the top of the divide where we could look down into the valley so far below. The thought came to me that I could never come up that moun­tain to go to Mass and I began to cry. Papa was so worried and said comfortingly, "Mama, if you don't want to go we will go home. I want you to be happy." He stopped the team and we talked it over. He said that we could come to town frequently. I said, "Lew, I won't go back and leave you to do this work alone. It was only the first view of Snowmass that made it seem so far away."  So we went down the winding road into the valley of Snowmass to live in the little cabin. Bessie, three years old, having heard us talk of Snowmass, waved her little hand gracefully on our arrival, saying, "Is this Snowmass?" To her mind it was not what she expected. Her older brother Joe who was five was much interested in all his new surroundings. He soon found many things to show to his little sister and baby brother - the birds' nests in the trees near the house, and the little saucy chipmunks which would run up the trees and squeak at them as if scolding them for disturbing their solitude. The birds seemed to be singing to us. We soon had a garden planted in the rich soil and there were the two cows that came home every evening to be milked. The corral was about a block from the cabin.  Little Louie would toddle along with us on the path to take care of the cows.  My first great worry about the baby was one morning when Joe, Bessie and I went to the garden to get some vegetables. The baby was asleep when we left but when we returned he was not there. I ran everywhere looking for him, even down to the river bank. Snowmass Creek was so large we called it a river. Nowhere was he to be found. It was beginning to get dark and we were afraid we could not see him. Then I saw Papa coming with the cows at the far end of the road. I screamed and waved my arms frantically to hurry as Louie was lost. He rode as fast as he could to us as he could not hear what I was saying. We both ran again in every direction and soon found Louie asleep in the tall grass half way down the path. In my fright I had over­looked him, He had come to look for us when he awoke. Being still sleepy he lay down in the grass. How we thanked God, as the bears and wildcats were liable to come down the mountain at this time of the year.

1890 (continued)

That summer Papa took us to town for a visit with a good neighbor. As Mr. Man­ning, her husband, was waiting for a new lease he went back with Lew and Joe.  The morning we left home as we put the three children on blankets back of the seat there was a jolt and Bessie put up her little hand. It was caught under the seat. The nail on her thumb was torn off.  I thought we couldn’t go, but Papa ran to get bandages and Vaseline.   He tied it up saying we could see the doctor when we got to town.  The darling child was so patient, but I held her on my lap all the way in. She was so good and soon fell asleep.  We had no further trouble with it as I followed the direc­tions of an experienced old lady. I had a most enjoyable visit with the privilege of going to Mass every morning.  When Lew came to take us home and brought Mr. Manning with him, we took Mrs. Manning and her two little girls home with us as they had never been up in the mountains.  My friend was born and raised in Philadelphia and we enjoyed her remarks about everything so much. They spent a happy week with us.

I was very happy and contented in our little country home until Christmas was drawing near. Then I longed to be in town for that happy season. So Papa decided

that we would go for a couple of weeks.  We could live in one of our vacant cottages, as our house had been rented to a good tenant.  I did all of my Christmas baking as

we would have but a small stove.  On December 21st we were ready to go. As there had not been enough of snow for sleighing in the valley but too much over the Divide we

had to go down to the mouth of the Creek about twelve miles to the little town of Snowmass where the creek flowed into the Roaring Fork River.  There we could get on to the highway to Aspen about twenty-five miles away. It was a long ride on a cold December day but we were happy when we got there.  Papa got a good fire going quickly and we got warm.  The house was not as warm as our log cabin and the children all had colds and were sick. So we had to stay all winter and could not get back until April.  Papa went out to the farm a few times and then drove the cows to a neighbor who offered to take care of them with their own. We went back the long way as the road was still impassable. We had to transfer to a sleigh when we were two miles from home as the snow was still so deep. Soon the warm days of May melted it away and Lew began his Spring work.


The principal and first thing we had to do was to pick out a new site about a block from the county road to build our new house on.  Lew worked on it between times as he was busy with his spring work, gardening, etc. By July 1st we were ready to move into our nice large cabin with full sized windows and a glass panel in the front door. When the walls were lined with canvas, the curtains, rug and other furniture we brought from town in place you may be sure I was proud of our little home in the mountains. After that the days passed very quickly as I was busy again preparing for another little one whom we already loved and who arrived on the morning of the 21st of July [39].   How sweet she looked when the nurse put her in my arms in her soft white muslin dress. I can see good old Doctor Robinson yet as he leaned back in his rocker and laughed heartily, saying, “The old bachelor whom your husband sent for me said there was no hurry!” No doubt the man thought of the bucket of fresh buttermilk just churned,  the line of clothes and the kitchen floor just scrubbed. Since there was nothing for the doctor to do he went fishing and caught the biggest trout we ever saw in Snowmass.  He was delighted when he sat down to dinner. Then taking another look at me and the baby who was fine, our good Doctor Robinson left us. How proud you were, Bessie, over your tiny baby sister! How you loved her!  Louie, too, would come with you to the bed to see the baby.  He wasn't jealous in the least that he was no longer the baby.  Although our little darling was so little and expanding like a flower I was not able to ride in a heavy wagon over a mountain road the eleven miles to town to have our precious treasure baptized for seven whole weeks.  Finally on the 7th of September we went and stayed all night to make arrangements, godparents, etc. On the morning of the 8th, our Mother Mary's Feast and Bessie's 4th birthday, our little Helen Evangeline received the waters of Baptism which made her a child of God and an heir to the Kingdom of Heaven.  I prayed that she would never forfeit these precious gifts. I didn't get to Mass and Holy Communion again until Christmas as we stayed on the ranch that winter. Papa went in on horseback nearly every Sunday.




We were very comfortable in our new home in Snowmass Valley in the shadow of the mountains and we enjoyed caring for our four darling children. Joe, Bessie and Louie loved to play with and help take care of little sister Helen.  When the children were asleep during the long winter evenings, Papa read aloud while I sewed and mended, except when he was sick. He had his first bad spell with his heart [40], and there was not a neighbor for a mile on either side of us.  At those times I would put his feet in a bucket of hot water for this seemed to relieve him.  However, in the Spring he was much better.  I often thought his illness was part of God's plan for us that we might live closer to the Church and where our children would have the privilege of a Christian education. For that reason I prayed and hoped that we would not spend another winter in Snowmass. Otherwise our home was peaceful and happy with plenty to supply all our temporal needs. Papa had a good start in the cattle business with a range for miles on the mountain slopes where hundreds of cattle could pasture in

the sun all winter. It was an ideal situation and Papa was eager to remain there in­definitely. That was one time I opposed my husband's plans, arguing that life was too short to spend it where we could not practice our holy religion, and where our little girls would grow up to be called "cattle queens", riding the range.  What would become of their spiritual life in such an environment? Papa argued that he might not be able to make a living for us in town.  My life was so full of hope and promise that I answered, "0, Papa, that could not be. Even so, if we are poor our children wi11 be good and God will help us when we try to serve Him."

FALL OF 1892

So we began our plans to move to town in the fall as we were expecting an addition to our little family. This required a lot of government expense and delay as our homestead had not yet been proved up on. It would now have to be committed to cash entry, paying the Government $1.25 per acre. We could raise the money only by mort­gaging. This could be easily done as the crop was so good and everything was so well kept as the agent saw when he had dinner with us. The money we had after paying for the land went to build a little home in town.  It was but the cost of materials for

Papa who had had some experience in building did the work himself while we were

living in a rented house. It was in that rented house on North street that our prec­ious little Leonella [41]first peeped into this big world on that bright Monday morning, December 12th, the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe. Yes, our new darling was strong and well and just as cute as her two brothers and sisters. The children loved to watch her yawn and stretch in the nurse's arms. Papa always wrote to my sister, Sr. H. Evangelist, about each newcomer. This time he asked her to suggest a name. That is how we named her Leonella.  My sister wrote that the Sisters had a good laugh when they read my letter telling how Father Pitival had at first refused to give that "unchristian name" even after I told him that it must be a saint's name because it is a Sister's name.  With a happy thought I said, "Father, her grandmother's name is Margaret.  We will call her Leonella Margaret." He said, "That's a good saint’s name. Call her Margaret.”


As soon as the weather moderated Lew bought two lots for $500 on West Hallam St.

This street was the principal avenue of travel and was later made into a highway running all the way to Grand Junction.  It was a nice location and Papa began build­ing a home again in Aspen.  We were ready to move on March 6th, Louie's fourth birth­day. He had his first pants and waist that day and was so happy not to be a girl any­more that he ran and played. This was to be our winter home where we could go to Mass and the children could go to a Sisters' school. Joe went for only two years and Bessie for one. It was too cold for her to go the first year. Then a sort of depression came and the sisters had to leave.  When Joe went to the Public School his problems on the blackboard were so neatly done.  His teacher, Miss Smith, asked him where he had gone to school for he did his work so well.  He said, “To the Sisters.”  Miss Smith replied, “You had good teachers.”




Our plans were all made to go to the ranch in the summer where wee could raise plenty of vegetables for winter use.  We could pack enough butter and eggs too. It would be lovely for the children to be out there in our dear little valley home for the summer. Papa could go to Mass nearly every Sunday on horseback and Mother once or twice during the summer. "Man  proposed but God disposes." That very first summer Papa had the shingles as the doctor called it. He was very sick for several weeks and the children got diphtheria. Bessie had it in its worse form, hemorrhages of the nose, etc. which the doctor had a hard time stopping. It left our little girl para­lyzed for three months. She could neither talk nor walk. So we never got back to the ranch.



That winter the ranch was jumped. Two people who wanted it moved on and took possession of our house, hiring lawyers to write the Government that we didn't return to live in it in compliance with the law. Papa wrote to Washington a direct state­ment of how we had lived there for three years but had not been able to prove up be­cause of a mistake in the surveying which delayed our filing nearly two years. He said we were obliged to move to town for the children to go to school and that we fully intended to go back the next year but sickness in the family prevented our doing so.  Lew received an answer promptly telling him that he should have his ranch and that those people had to leave. This they did but not until they had destroyed everything they could indoors and out. They broke the stove and took everything out of the house and smashed the mowing machine. Papa said that he didn't know whether we could ever go back now but that the ranch had to be saved for the mortgage company from whom we got the money and not for those men who had no right to it.




We had more sickness in the Spring and I was not very well myself as another child whom we already loved was expected in the Fall.    We could not think of going then and Papa had a contract hauling timber for a mine. He had been quite well until the last week in September when he got typhoid fever. He was very ill for three weeks before Frances was born and that seemed to be the beginning of our hardships.   Our Lord took me at my word that I would rather be poor and be able to go to Mass than rich in cattle so far away from Church.  Up to that time Papa had been a very good provider and manager.  Even when his fever was 105 degrees he would not stay in bed, saying, "Mama, I cannot be sick now when you are, as I must take care of the children."  He soon was not able to get up. Though he had been very ill for two weeks on that lovely autumn Sunday, October 21st, when we were presented with our fourth daughter [42], he crept into my room to rejoice with me over the sweet baby girl.  When Joe, Bessie, Louie and Helen were told at a neighbor's that they had a baby sister they all came running home to see the baby.  They were so excited and during the next few days would watch eagerly when the nurse had her on her lap, to see the little pink fingers and toes.  Little Leonella was just as happy to see her little sister since she was now a big girl going on two years old.  I, too, was happy that God had spared Papa's life to take care of his dear little family. Papa was so anxious to get out and be doing something that the next week he worked in his shop making a closed cover for our dairyman's milk wagon. From an open canvas cover it had panelled [sic] sliding doors.   Mr. Christopher, our milkman, was so proud of his up-to-date wagon.  A farmer had been caring for our team. Papa was very anxious to get the home for he would then start again on his contract hauling logs for a mine. The weather turned cold and stormy and Papa should not have been out that day and the next. The other haulers did not go but Papa was so ambitious.  That night when he came home after wading knee deep in snow all day he was so cold and chilled I could hardly get him warm in bed. The next morning when I was getting breakfast for the children he got up and called me into the living room. "Mama," he said, "I am divided in two, my left side and limbs are all stiff." Although he could walk he had such a queer feeling. I sent for the doctor at once. The Doctor said that he thought the muscles were chilled from the cold but that he would recover in time. That was the end of Papa's teaming or much of anything that winter. He was never the same again and what made it harder was that when he seemed to be well he had no ambition to do anything except a little carpenter repair work for a real estate man who asked him [43]. He also hauled a load of logs for wood for some of the neighbors. We still had two cows from the ranch and I got customers for milk near enough for Joe and Bessie to carry it. I told them that the dairyman could go all over town but that little children could not. The milk was so good we had no trouble selling it.

1895 AND 1896

These good conditions did not last.  The A.P.A. Movement was on. They went through the town like wild fire to destroy, if possible, everything Catholic. Such force was brought to bear on our customers that they quit without warning. Several wood customers also cancelled their orders. I tried to sell cream but had to go so far from home to get any orders. These were not regular and it didn't pay to keep the cows. We sold one and kept the other for a while to have milk for the children and for a couple of small customers nearby. This didn't pay so finally we had to sell our little Jersey that we liked so much. Then I began making mince meat which I continued for three winters with more or less success. There were plenty of orders around the holidays and that was about all.


That Spring Papa got a couple of carpenter jobs through a friend, Mrs. Welsch.  We were happy to have the lovely spring days again and thanked Gad that our dear little family were so well after a long severe winter. I never enjoyed the beauties of nature so much, the birds singing in the trees, everything so nice and green, the flowers budding, as on that beautiful fifth of June, the month of the Sacred Heart, when He sent us our fifth and last darling baby girl [44]. She brought an added blessing

to our home and had the same sweet charm which made the whole household love her at once. She was such a dear good baby. Mrs. Welsch, our good friend who first held her before the nurse arrived in the morning, said that she could have held her all night as she was so sweet. Her sister Frances loved to stand by my bed and look at her tiny baby sister. One evening when the nurse had her ready for bed she told her to go now to Mama to say her prayers. As she ran across the room in her little white gown and her golden hair flying loose the nurse said, "Look, Mother, doesn't she look like an angel?”  Before long the baby could look at her and smile so sweetly.

All the children loved to watch her and fondly touch the little pink fingers and toes.  When she was two, my niece Rose Hines (my sister Mary' s daughter) with her little Zita came to spend the summer [45], with us in the mountains. Aspen nestled among the Rockies.  Zita was eighteen months old and such a lovable baby.  Her little words were so birdlike and she could only walk around the wall holding on to something. When Papa came home for dinner he would lie on the sofa for a little and Zita would slide around the room saying quietly "Papa".  Nellie would run across the room to

him and say "Mine Papa!" Papa would take them both into his arms and play with them. I forgot to say how our little girl got her name.  Papa said that this one should be Nellie after her mother.  There was to be a big parade for the Fourth of July and Papa, always so very patriotic, wanted us all to go to see it.  Not wanting to take the baby out before she was baptized I asked Father Pitival if he would please baptize her on July 2, Feast of the Visitation, instead of Sunday. He smiled and said, "All right.”  ,_ So on the Feast of the Visitation our darling was made a child of God with the name Nellie Bernadette.

FALL AND WINTER OF 1896 and 1897

As our temporal resources grew smaller Our dear Lord gave us strength to adapt ourselves to existing conditions and to get ell the happiness possible out of the things He gave us - good and healthy children who loved their home and their games as much or more than those children who had more of this world's goods.  The older children loved to read the Young Catholic Messenger and Sunday afternoon we had an hour of reading, stories and instructions. In the winter when they couldn't play outside Joe would line them up for a word contest which the children always enjoyed. On Saturdays in the stormy weather they would work hard all forenoon helping me to get all the work done. Joe would assign each one their part of the work and make out a report card for each one. They were as anxious to get good marks from him as they were at school.  In the afternoons they would play store. Each child had his own house in some corner and had to go to Joe's store to buy their goods. He made paper money giving each some to begin with but when it was over he had all the money. The children were happy over their purchases and the bargains they made. They would then put everything away where it belonged - dishes, pans, cooking utensils, every­thing. Sunday was always a very happy day going to Mass and to Catechism, then reading until dinner which they knew would be something extra for Sunday. And so things went on very happily if not very financially successful.

1897 - 1898

After being disappointed in some more contract work Papa was happy in the prospect of managing a co-op store which had just failed because of inability to run it properly or successfully. It was established by the Knights of Labor who were very strong at that time. Papa never belonged to any other organization and he was the secretary of this one. A meeting had been called to discuss the advisa­bility of closing the store as it was proving unprofitable. Papa advised that they wait for a couple of weeks in order to give anyone who wished to propose a new plan a chance to do so.  He himse1f had learned a great deal about co-ops in Utah from a Mormon who worked for us in Grand Valley.  The plan he worked out waS the best they had offered and Lew was sure therefore, that he would be given the management of the store. The former manager had received $60 a month. The only other man who offered a plan was the local butcher who said he would take it for $60 a month. Then Papa told them he would manage it for $40 a month plus one-fourth of the profits for one year. Alas, when they found out that that Catholic, Mr. Bradley, was the only one who claimed he could make a success of it they simply closed down the store and sold out. Again Papa suffered persecution on account of the prejudice stirred up by the A.P.A. movement. My heart ached for him in this disappointment.


There seemed nothing that Papa could do under these unfavorable conditions. We were expecting another little darling to bring blessings on our home. It was the coldest, hardest winter we had ever experienced and it often required all the courage and fortitude we possessed to carry on. Two weeks before the baby came I had a bad spell of the “grip" as it was then called. I thought it a better name than the "flu” for it gripped the entire body.  On February 6th I felt well enough to sit up.  I sewed on the machine for two or three hours making a nightgown.  A neighbor came that evening and said that I would be sick again.  She was right for at midnight Papa had to get the nurse who lived only a block from us.  It was fortunate that she could come immediately as Mrs. Juett had already engaged her, but Mr. Juett came for her in two hours and we had to call in another neighbor. The doctor came the next morning through a blinding snow storm. That night was the coldest we had had when at nine o'clock our baby boy was ushered into a bleak world [46].  Happy for him he knew nothing about it and like his sisters before him waxed strong and well despite the weather outside. All the children were just as happy over the darling "teeny" baby as if he were the first instead of the ninth and last of the novena. Sister M. Evangelist had written to me saying "Nellie, isn't this the end of the novena?"  His brothers and sisters would stand around in admiration as the nurse bathed him, lightly touching the little pink toes. His big brother Joe, now fourteen, took off his shoes and stockings to show that his big toe was the size of the baby's whole foot. The next week Joe and Bessie came down with the Gripp [sic] and the very day I got up Papa had it too.  I was like an old lady, feeling so weak and shaky, as I heated a mustard plaster for Papa. There was work to be done taking care of the sick and the baby, but thank God all recovered. It was only a few weeks until the weather moderated and spring was in the air. The first robins were hailed with delight. The children were so happy, saying, "Now we can soon go out and play" as the snow was going fast.

I knew that Jesus looked lovingly on our little family. He saw then how each one would help in the spreading of His Kingdom on earth either as religious, as three little girls would, one even in a pagan land, or in providing Him with Priests as Joe would do, and with another religious sister as Bessie would, as well as sending forth Christian leaders in Home and Country.


The winter of 1901 was hard financially. Only when it was below zero could Papa get a day’s or even a night's work keeping the ice out of the flume at the dam a mile up Castle Creek. How glad he was to be earning something. The children would watch the thermometer to see if it was below zero so Papa could go. They never thought how cold it would be for him, for they saw how happy he was to go.

SPRING Of 1902

Finally the long cold winter was over, How happy as usual everyone was on the first approach of Spring.  On Sunday, the first day in March, when Papa and I came home from Mass, the children were running around the yard on the hard crust of snow singing, "S ring is here!" On Louie' s birthday, March 6th, little Nellie said, "I can pick roses on my birthday.”  Her birthday would be June 5th. On March 19th when I came home from Church she said, “Mama , this isn't our home." I said, "Nellie dear, Papa and I were talking of going to the Northwest, but this is still our home."  With a wave of her little hand and speaking very sympathetically she answered, "I didn't mean this home, Mama. Heaven is our home. We are here only for a little while.”  For her it was only a little while, for on the 28th, nine days later, she was in Heaven where she would be picking roses on her fifth birthday. It happened so sudden­ly. A few days after our talk about Heaven Bessie came home from school quite sick.  We thought it but a cold or a little indigestion and gave her the usual remedies.  The next day when Papa came home she was sitting wrapped up in the rocking chair. He saw at once that she had temperature and said, "Mama, we must send for the doctor." Joe went quickly. When the doctor came he thought as I did that it was but a cold.  He said that he would return the next day.  Little Nellie helped Mother so well that day, dusting as she had seen her sisters do.  She had never been sick not even with the measles when the others had them. The next morning when the children were dress­ing Nellie cried, saying that she was cold.  I told Joe to wrap her up on the rocking chair and I would be there in a minute as I was putting up Papa’s lunch before his leaving for work. Joe said, “Mama, Nellie is shaking.”  I never saw anyone have such a chill, her teeth were held tight and she looked at me so distressed.  Even when we got her in bed with hot flatirons about her she was still cold. I send Joe for the doctor, for as the chill passed she seemed to collapse. I was frightened and took her up in my arms, then held her on a pillow on my lap until the doctor came.   He first went to the bed to see how Bessie was and found that she had scarlet fever.  I said, "Doctor, this child needs your attention more now”. On examining her he thought that she too was getting it. In the evening there was no rash on her although Bessie was covered with it. Nellie seemed to be choking. The Doctor gave her some medicine and she lay quietly.   Next morning we were quarantined and Papa and the boys had to live across the street. The Doctor said it was all right that Nellie had not eaten anything, just lying there, but now he said we must give her some nourishment. She could take nothing. Papa brought her a pretty little box to see if she would notice it. She smiled and held it. That evening she said her stomach hurt. The Doctor told me to put on hot applications. Once in changing them she dropped her box and said, "My box." I picked it up for her and as I was going back to the stove for another hot cloth, she said, "Thank you, M-a-m-a." That was the last word she ever said. I thought she had fallen asleep. At midnight as I was dozing near the stove.  I thought she called me but when I went to her quickly I saw that she was dying. How could I leave her to call Papa!  I knew that I must, and waded through the snow that had fallen and piled up so deep in the blizzard. I tapped on his window calling him to come quickly that Nellie \'13S dying. He said, "O, Mama, run back, I'll be there in a minute."  He was, with only one shoe on. Picking her up and holding her close to the stove he said, "Mama, give her the medicine." I was holding her on my lap when the Doctor came but he could do nothing. She lay there just breathing for 48 hours. On the second morning her temperature went down. At 6 a.m. she breathed her last while all the children with Papa and Mama whispered prayers for her or to her to pray for us in Heaven where she had gone so peacefully. She looked so sweet and happy.  The Doctor did not know that she had a ruptured appendix. Our darling just lay there and died because God wanted her in Heaven [47].   Her big sister Bessie was spared to help Mother with the other children. She was indeed a comfort to me for many years until her dear sisters and brothers were old enough to take their share of the work. Nellie's little two year old brother, Frank, seemed to miss her the most at first. If he fell and got a bump he would run to her when Mother was busy and the children were in school. She would kiss him and console him.

Mrs. White, our good friend, came as soon as she heard about Nellie's death.

She helped me to dress Nellie in her pretty white dress. I tied her two little braids with blue ribbons on each side of the forehead as I did when she was living. Mrs. White called her two big brothers and said, "Boys, look at your angel sister and never do anything that would make her ashamed of you." I always felt grateful to her for that. She was so good-hearted and she told me once that she would like to be a Catholic but knew that her family would be so opposed to it.

The day of Nellie’s funeral a change came over Joe.  From a school boy of 14 in the first year of high school he became a man and insisted on going to work to help our finances. Papa had had a long sick spell and was not able to do the work that was available at the time. Joe went to the sawmill and got a jab at ratchet setting. It was hard and dangerous too as he had to ride in the moving frame which carried each big log to the saw. It was a big circular saw with such sharp teeth that it could cut a board in a few seconds. Joe had to turn the log for another board and

so on. In the cold weather the danger of slipping was always there.  We were not

very happy to have him give up school to do this but he worked there for two years without an accident. Our dear Lord answered our prayers for his safety.




Business was so dull in the summer 0f 1902 that the mill closed down for two months [48]. Mr. Koch, the owner, offered to send Joe out in the country with a crew of men working in the timber. I went to Mr. Koch and asked him if he could give Joe half time work so that he could stay at home. At first he was indignant, saying that he offered it because Joe wanted to work.  I told him that Joe did need a job but if he could work half time he could continue his studies at home. He was surprised to learn that Joe was taking a correspondence course in electrical and mechanical engin­eering.  When the Vice President of the Scranton Extension Course came to examine his work he said to me, "Mrs. Bradley, when a boy works ten hours a day and does this kind of excellent work at night, it is the kind of advertisement we want.”  Mr. Koch then gave him work at home for the summer.


The next summer times were still difficult.  Joe succeeded in getting work on a big ranch in the country. The overseer became interested in Joe, telling him that he had a brother in Harrison, Idaho, and of the marvelous opportunities there were in the Northwest. The year before Papa had received the New Year's edition of the Spokane-Review from a friend. It pictured graphically the Spokane of the future with its good schools and churches, its wonderful source of electric power from the waterfalls of the Spokane River which ran through the city. Papa was very interested and we hoped that he would be well enough to go in the Spring and prepare a place for us. However, he finally decided to stay in Aspen, so Joe and Louie had both worked another summer. Joe was eager to go that winter. He must, he thought, if he was to carryon the work he wanted to do.  Reluctantly Papa gave his consent and the preparations were made and finished by Christmas Eve, trunk, ticket and all.

On Christmas morning the overseer with whom Joe was to travel sent word that his wife was not willing for him to go. That was a terrible shock. It seemed too much. To see Joe undertake such a journey was hard enough but for him to go alone was un­thinkable. There was nothing else to do since Joe's heart was set on going and everything was ready. Our Christmas was very happy under the circumstances, early Mass, a good breakfast. The children enjoyed the Christmas tree and were so happy to have their big brother for Christmas even though he had to go the next day. The Christmas dinner was especially good and Bessie helped me fix up a lunch basket for Joe to cheer him on his way. He packed it with turkey sandwiches, fruit cake, doughnuts, cookies and oranges. It was a nice wicker basket with a handle across the top and a lid securely fastened.   We filled it in with candy. Our loneliness had to be concealed under forced smiles as we bade him goodbye at the little station a few blocks from home.  Helen, Lola and Frances had to stay with Frank who was not yet five and had a bad cold. The chill in the heart more than the sub-zero weather was almost unbearable - to see our dear boy going away from us into the night and

not knowing what his destination would bring. He would be a stranger in a strange land. At Mass that morning I had begged our Lord to take care of Joe.  Before leaving the Church he knelt with me before St. Joseph's altar to ask his good Patron to guide him on his way. How we all missed him at the table and everywhere. How long the days were until time for hearing of his safe arrival in Spokane on December 29, 1903 [49].  He gave us his address at the Kaddack Hotel on Riverside. Already he had started to look for work but met with refusals everywhere. He would write every night of his disappointment and then would say, "But don't worry, Mama. I will get something soon.”  When we didn't hear for a few days I would be sure that something had happened to him. After Mass one morning I went into the rectory to see Miss Bryant, Father Hickey's housekeeper. She was so kind and would say, "Don't worry, only have a Mass offered for him. He will be all right." I followed her advice and the next day Papa came home from the Post Office waving a letter from Joe. It was from Elk, a lumber town, forty miles north of Spokane.  A former superintendent of the mill there was staying at the same hotel as Joe. He became interested in Joe and told him that though the mill was shut down for the present he could get something to do while waiting, as they were cutting cord wood. Joe went at once and although it was the hardest work he had ever done, pulling one end of a crosscut hand saw with a big strong Swede, he stayed at it until the job was done.  After five weeks he could just pay his board and room with twenty-five cents left. While there he got acquainted with Leonard Wald, shipping clerk for the mill when it was running.  Waiting for it to start again, Leonard and his companion batched in their cabin. They were friendly to Joe and Joe spent most of his evenings with them. On the day he wrote, Leonard received word from a Mr. Anderson whom he had worked for on a big farm near Mead, asking him to send one of his idle men to help on the ranch, feeding and caring for cattle, sorting vegetables, etc. Leonard asked Joe if he would go. Joe said he would go on the first train which would be going through at 3:00 a.m. He gave Joe all the instructions, where to get off, even making a little map of the place, the field through which he had to go and the perch on the side of the house where he should knock. He also gave him a "gad" -  a tin can with a candle in it, to help him find the way. The boys in Colorado used these when skating at night. When the engineer slowed up the train the next morning Joe jumped and almost buried himself in a snow bank.  He pulled himself out and finally got to the house.  Mr. Anderson came and said they needed help.  He told Joe that there was no work on Sunday morning except to feed the cattle "and at ten o'clock you will harness the horses, hitch up the carriage and go with us to church." Joe said, “Mr. Anderson, I shall do as you say in getting things ready for you.  Then 1 will go to my church in Hillyard as I am a Catholic.” He walked the four miles in deep snow to Mass and did this every Sun­day he was there. God blessed his future work and Mr. Anderson always held him in highest regard, inviting him to his home long after we all came to Spokane. I forgot to say that in his first letter Joe wrote, “Mama, that was a very good lunch you

gave me.  It lasted several days in Spokane. I just had to buy a bowl of soup to go with it as I was  afraid my money would not last until I could get work. There were so many dozens of idle men around who could not get work.”


At the end of March Joe again turned his face to Spokane.  He must try again to get work in the machine shops and again continue his cherished course in E1ectrical Engineering.  His first letter said that there was no chance yet and that it was just as dark and gloomy overhead too as it had been all winter.  Oh, for even one day of Colorado sunshine, but as it was Holy Week he would attend the services. His Easter greeting was his first cheerful letter. He said that on Wednesday of Holy Week the clouds finally lifted and the sun shone brightly going down in golden splendor on the beautiful horizon. Clouds and discouragement were gone and he had a glorious Easter that ninth of April. The next day he turned his attention to a big planing and shipping lumber mill. The foreman took a liking to him and hired him even though there seemed to be no vacancy. Joe liked his work in those planing rooms among the piles of freshly planed lumber. He decided to stay there and work up to a better position.

It had also been a trying winter at home. The older children, especially Bessie, Louie and Helen as well as myself were living in the hope of going to Spokane at the end of school. Of course we were sure that Papa would go with us so I found a nice old couple who would rent the house furnished. Papa had a good garden of vegetables. To my surprise and sorrow when they came to make the final arrangements Papa almost broke down, saying he was not going to leave our home nor should I and the children. How could they follow Joe into a strange city, etc.  He promised that I would see

much better times next winter and if not we would go the next year. A whole year to wait!  When I wrote to Joe that his father was not willing for us to go until next year he wrote us the nicest letter saying that it must be for the best. Since Papa was not willing he was afraid that he would never be satisfied. Then, too, Bessie was to graduate the next summer and it might be better for her to finish there at home.  The year would soon pass and we would all work together for a happy reunion the next June.


Louie was almost inconsolable as he had counted the days until he could go with Joe. So sure was he of going that he didn't take the city herding of cows in the Spring.  Now the only thing for him to do would be to work in the lumber yard. It was so hard for him, a slightly built boy of fifteen to stand on a lumber pile and pull up big heavy plank boards handed to him by a big stout man for ten hours a day in the hot weather. All the other boys were swimming, etc. Bessie had worked for a nice lady the summer before, helping her with the children and so on. She liked Bessie but could not afford to have her for the summer as before. It was a hard year as Papa could get so little work.  He was very discouraged. We knew we should plan to go when school was out.  Bessie graduated on the first day of June with a class of six girls and four boys [50]. A nice program was prepared for the evening of graduation. Bessie gave the Valedictory. Everyone said she did so well and that she was the most graceful and the prettiest girl on the stage. Her dress was the sheerest Persian lace with a beautiful lace bertha which set it off so well.

We were practically ready to go as Joe had sent us money to help. Bessie and I had the sewing all done for the children, the dresses for the girls to travel in, etc. Then Papa again refused to go, saying that it was foolish to let the children decide to leave our home. The older ones could go and come as they liked. I knew full well that there was nothing in Aspen to come back for. Joe had been in Spokane for a year and a half, and had a good position for a boy of his age. Bessie would have to get a school and we knew that Louie would get work in the mill where Joe was the shipping clerk. Even dear old Doctor Robinson came and tried to talk Papa into going, saying there was no future for the children in Aspen.  Our Pastor said it was the only thing for us to do and that if I were firm he was sure that Papa would go with us. It was a painful duty for me to go ahead with our plans. Joe had rented a nice house, hav­ing everything in readiness for us when we would arrive. He had bought the necessary furniture and kitchen equipment.


Those were sad days, packing trunks, boxing souvenirs of other days and putting the house in readiness for Papa. We left him his ticket so he could join us in the fall. Aunt Annie had given us a generous donation as a contribution for the expenses of our trip. It made my going a little easier when Papa said that he and a member of the High School faculty were going prospecting for gold during the latter's vaca­tion. Papa knew where to locate a gold-bearing vein on a distant mountain. They had talked for hours the night before we left.

In the morning as the time arrived to go it was only our dear Lord who helped me to do what I never thought I could. I shall never forget Helen, a slender girl of fourteen, clinging to Papa at the train, sobbing so hard and saying between sobs, "Papa, don't let it be long until you come, will you?" All the children were crying and Bessie was trying to help get them settled in the train. It was the most painful hour in my life.  We had wired Joe when to meet us and I had written to Aunt Mary that we would not stop over in Grand Junction but to meet us when the train stopped.  She and her son Aust did meet us in their three-seated family carriage, saying "You must come home with us as you cannot go on because of fire in the Utah line." Of course the children were delighted. The Corcorans did everything possible for our comfort and happiness.  We had to wire Joe of the delay. Next morning we were told we could go by noon as the railroad company had built a track around that small end of the mountain right on the edge of the river. Ours was the first train over it and it did make me a little nervous. The children were all so good and we were spared the trouble of taking them into a diner as Aunt Mary had prepared a large basket full of a good chicken lunch.  It was surely good of her and typical of Aunt Mary as all of us knew.

Towards evening on June 12, 1905 we had our first glimpse of Spokane [51].  There was our Joe watching for us. How very happy we were at the sight of him! After the embraces he saw to our baggage and then took us to 2118 N. Addison whore a lovely hot dinner awaited us. Mrs. Clark, a good neighbor, had come to Joe's assistance in making ready for our arrival. Joe was just as jubilant as we were and so proud to show us our rooms with the beds made and everything provided for our comfort. How wonderfully thoughtful was my nineteen-year-old son!  From our front walk we  could see the entrance to Gonzaga College. We lived at 2118 for less than two years. It was a rented house and we thought it better to pay on a new house than to lay rent. As soon as the house on the corner of Baldwin and Astor was built we bargained for it.  So 327 E. Baldwin was our address until our children were grown up. The fact that our boys could attend Gonzaga and our girls Holy Names Academy compensated for my many disappointments. Papa's letters came regularly. He was  lonesome for us but still clung to the hope of getting returns from his investments.  Twice he came to see how we were situated, but returned to Aspen.  Your Mother went back to Aspen one summer to help him put his affairs in order so he could return with me at least by the next spring. Reluctantly he acquiesced but my hopes were dashed when he said it would be but for a visit.  However, the last three years of his life were spent with us [52]. It was a great blessing, for he was a sick man and never lived to return to Aspen, as you know.



This finishes the chronicle of Grandma Bradley's life as she wrote it when she was: in her eighties.  Exactly forty years from that June 12 that the family arrived in Spokane, she was laid to rest beside Papa in Fairmount Cemetery, 1945.
Editor's Note: You can visit the Fairmount Memorial Cemetery site and find Nellie and her husband Lew [misspelled as "Louis"] in the surname listing there in the same plot. Edward Kelly makes an interesting speculation about the listing of his birth name as "Louis" as opposed to "Lewis", his birth name of record. His speculation is that the misspelling may have been by design. Nellie and her three daughters who were Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary may have wanted to make his birth name "Catholic" by saying that it was "Louis" rather than "Lewis." There is a St. Louis (King Louis IX of France) after all, but there is no St. Lewis! As we may recall from Nellie's memoirs, Lewis Harding Bradley converted to Catholicism before his marriage. His birth name was Lewis and that did not change at his baptism as a Catholic nor in Nellie's memoirs! This is perhaps a case of "Regis Kelley" in reverse. Regis, a second cousin once removed to Ed Kelly and Bob Sweeney, apparently wanted to make his surname sound "Protestant" by adding the second "e" because the "Catholic" version was assumed in America to be Kelly. The Towanda, PA Daily Review obituary for Regis' mother, Bridget Frawley Kelly, in 1955 spelled her surname as Kelly and not Kelley. In the 1913 records of Campbellville school on the Sullivan County, PA Genealogy Project web site, Regis' surname is spelled as Kelly like all his cousins attending the school that year. Notwithstanding Regis' addition of a second "e" in his surname, there are Catholics in Ireland even today who spell their surname as Kelly or Kelley!



1.      James Kelly came to America from County Cork, Ireland in 1842.

2.      James Kelly worked at Green’s settlement near Dushore, Pennsylvania.

3.      James Kelly married Johanna Flynn, sister of William Flynn.  There is no additional information on the Flynn Family, except for the account by Irene (Leahy) Coveney reproduced on pages 65-67 in Helen Elizabeth (“Bessie”) Beirne’s In the Beginning…..  On page 66 thereof, Irene states that Johanna (Flynn) Kelly’s brother, William Flynn, migrated to Lowell, Massachusetts.  This source is a privately published history of the Kelly family’s early days in Pennsylvania written by the granddaughter of Daniel and Mary (Leahy) Kelly via their son Daniel J. Kelly and his wife Ella (Hannon) Kelly.

4.   Johanna Flynn ** came with her mother, three sisters and two brothers from County Limerick, near Cashel, Ireland.
** Editor's Note: In April 2009, Edward Kelly provided the following additonal information on the Flynn family:

When the Flynns Came to Sugar Ridge, Overton Township, Bradford County, PA

I am indebted to History of Overton (1810-1910) by Clement F. Heverly for the information immediately below.
John Flynn settled on the former John O'Connell farm on Sugar Ridge in 1852. John's brother, William Flynn, settled on the former Callahan farm which was adjacent to the former John O'Connell farm. The Heverly account states that John and William Flynn sold out some years later. The Heverly account states erroneously that both John and William Flynn moved to Minnesota.
Irene Leahy Coveney, a daughter of Francis P. and Catherine Dorsey Leahy, a granddaughter of Patrick and Ellen Flynn Leahy and Patrick and Margaret Cain Dorsey, wrote in the 1950s her history of Sugar Ridge which is included as an appendix in Helen Elizabeth (Bessie) Kelly Beirne's In the Beginning. Irene Leahy Coveney indicates that John Flynn migrated to Minnesota and that William Flynn migrated to Lowell, Massachusetts.
Ellen (Nellie) Kelly Bradley, daughter of James and Johanna Flynn Kelly, wrote in her memoirs above that she went to her mother's relatives in Lowell, Massachusetts in 1882 for the purpose of learning the millinery business. Presumably, her mother's relatives are the family of William Flynn.
The Heverly account also indicates in an appendix that Johanna Flynn died on June 27, 1860 at age 73 and is buried at SS. Philip and James Cemetery, Sugar Ridge, PA. Johanna Flynn is the mother of John and William Flynn and Johanna Flynn Kelly, Mary Flynn Leahy, and Ellen Flynn Leahy. Johanna Flynn is my great, great, great grandmother.

[On page 63, Irene Leahy Coveney states also that her

grandmother, Ellen Flynn Leahy, is a native of parish

Knocklong, County Limerick, Ireland. Her parenthetical

reference to Cork is inaccurate.]


[Irene Leahy Coveney's account on pages 41-42 of the arrival of

her grandparents, Patrick and Ellen Flynn Leahy, in

Pennsylvania appears to be based on family folklore rather than



[Johanna Flynn's name is omitted from Irene Leahy Coveney's

account on pages 65-66. Johanna Flynn's name is omitted also

from Helen Elizabeth (Bessie) Kelly Beirne's account of James

 Kelly on page 32.]


[Irene Leahy Coveney's account on pages 65-66 indicates also

that there were four Flynn sisters and two Flynn brothers.]



[Based on dates in Irene Leahy Coveney's account, Margaret Flynn Moore may have been a niece rather than a sister of Ellen Flynn Leahy, Mary Flynn Leahy, and Catherine Flynn Keefe Cusick. It appears that Irene Leahy Coveney may have substituted inadvertently the name of Margaret Flynn Moore for that of Johanna Flynn Kelly. There was little accurate information known about James and Johanna Flynn Kelly and their family until recently. Johanna Flynn Kelly died in 1882. James Kelly moved West by 1885. James and Johanna Flynn Kelly's sons and daughters left Pennsylvania by 1884.J

[Irene Leahy Coveney is the daughter of Francis and Catharine Dorsey Leahy. Francis Leahy is the son of Patrick and Ellen Flynn Leahy. I assume that Ellen Flynn Leahy and Johanna Flynn Kelly are sisters.]

[Edward M. Kelly is the great-grandson of Mary Ann Leahy Kelly. Mary Ann Leahy Kelly is the daughter of Thomas and Mary Flynn Leahy. I assume that Mary Flynn Leahy and Johanna Flynn Kelly are sisters.]

5. Johanna Flynn's grandmother Twohy was James Kelly's mother's first cousin.

[On page 31, Helen Elizabeth (Bessie) Kelly Beirne states that James Kelly's mother's name was Mary Touhey.]

6. In the 1840s, James Kelly's father and James Kelly's three brothers came to Pennsylvania, settled at Campbellville, and bought Sarah Ames Keene's tract.

[On page 31, Helen Elizabeth (Bessie) Kelly Beirne states that there were four Kelly brothers and one Kelly sister who came to America in 1838.]

[George Streby's account of Sullivan County, Pennsylvania's early history states that there were five Kelly brothers.]

[Papers in Edward M. Kelly's possession refer to five Kelly brothers, James, William, Daniel, John, and Michael.]

7. James Kelly's daughters, Mary, Johanna, and Ellen (Nellie), studied at St. Joseph's Academy, Binghamton, New York that was operated by the Sisters of St. Joseph.

[St. Joseph's Academy was established in 1862 and destroyed by fire in 1912.]      .

8. James Kelly's daughter, Johanna, became Sister M. Evangelist of the Sisters of St. Joseph.

[Sister M. Evangelist entered the Sisters of St. Joseph at Troy, New York on May 18, 1872, professed her religious vows on August 25, 1875, and died at Marquette, Michigan on October 2, 1900.]

9. James Kelly's daughter, Ellen (Nellie), was a candidate or postulant of the Sisters of St. Joseph, but withdrew from the religious community in 1881. Ellen (Nellie) returned to her parents' home on Kelly Hill near Overton, Pennsylvania and cared for her sick mother, Johanna Flynn Kelly.


10. James Kelly's wife, Johanna Flynn Kelly, died on February 22, 1882.

11. In autumn 1882, James Kelly's daughter, Ellen (Nellie), went to her mother's (Flynn) relatives in Massachusetts where there was an opportunity for her to learn millinery.

[On page 66, Irene Leahy Coveney states that Ellen (Nellie) Kelly Bradley's uncle, William Flynn, migrated to Lowell, Massachusetts.]

12. On February 20, 1883, James Kelly's daughter, Ellen (Nellie), received a letter from her brother William in which she learned of the death of William's wife, Ellen Sullivan, a native of Pennsylvania herself.

13. William Kelly with his wife Ellen and two children, Mary and Lucy, left Kelly Hill near Overton, Pennsylvania for Leadville, Colorado in 1882 and then Grand Valley near Grand Junction, Colorado, where the Ute Reservation had opened for settlement. [Editor's Note: See corrections to this part of the story at end of text.]

14. On February 22, 1883, Ellen (Nellie) Kelly left Massachusetts for New York and Pennsylvania.


15. On March 22, 1883, Ellen (Nellie) Kelly left Pennsylvania for Colorado.

16. On March 25, 1883, Ellen (Nellie) Kelly arrived in Pueblo, Colorado where her brother, Michael James Kelly, lived.

17. On April 4, 1883, Ellen (Nellie) Kelly left Pueblo, Colorado for Grand Junction, Colorado where she arrived on April 6, 1883.

18. In autumn 1883, Michael Corcoran arrived in Grand Junction, Colorado from Kelly Hill near Overton, Pennsylvania.

[Michael Corcoran is the husband of Ellen (Nellie) Kelly Bradley's sister, Mary Kelly Corcoran.]

[George Streby's History of Sullivan County, 1903 states that Dennis Corcoran, born near Quebec, and Mary Mahany of County Cork, Ireland, came to Sullivan County, Pennsylvania in 1843 and are Michael Corcoran's parents.]

19. In spring 1884, Mary Kelly Corcoran and children come from Kelly Hill near Overton, Pennsylvania to join Michael Corcoran in Colorado.

20. William and Lucy Kelly sold their farm to Michael and Mary

Kelly Corcoran in 1881, with the provision that James and Johanna Flynn Kelly, the parents of William Kelly and Mary Kelly Corcoran, would make their home there, have their needs taken care of, medical and otherwise, and receive a money allowance for personal use.

[Papers in Edward M. Kelly's possession indicate that James and Johanna Flynn Kelly conveyed their farm near Overton, Pennsylvania in Sullivan County, Pennsylvania to William Kelly, their son, and William Kelly's wife, Ellen, for $1,300 in 1877. William Kelly and his wife Ellen (Sullivan) conveyed the property to Michael Corcoran and his wife, Mary Kelly Corcoran, the daughter of James and Johanna Flynn Kelly, for $2,000 in 1880. Michael and Mary Kelly Corcoran conveyed the property to William P. Kelly, Edward M. Kelly's paternal grandfather, for $4,000 in 1883.] [Editor's Note: See further corrections to this part of the story at end of text.]

21. On April 14, 1884, Ellen (Nellie) Kelly married Lewis Harding Bradley.

22. Ellen (Nellie) Kelly Bradley remembers the three mile drive behind an oxen team with Uncle Michael Kelly's family to attend Midnight Mass in Pennsylvania near the home of her Aunt Catherine.

[See page 66 of the Beirne source for Irene Leahy Coveney's account of Catherine Flynn Keefe Cusick, Ellen (Nellie) Kelly Bradley's Aunt Catherine. The three mile drive refers to the distance from Kelly Hill to the Church of SS. Philip and James, Sugar Ridge, Pennsylvania.]

[Catherine Flynn Keefe Cusick is the sister of Ellen Flynn Leahy, Mary Flynn Leahy, and Johanna Flynn Kelly.]

23. Aunt Catherine had a son who became a priest and three daughters who became nuns.

[See page. 66 of Irene Leahy Coveney's account. The son of Daniel and Catherine Flynn Keefe Cusick is the Reverend Daniel Cusick who was ordained in 1882 and died in 1887. The daughter of Daniel and Catherine Flynn Keefe Cusick is Annie Cusick known in religious order as Sister M. Ambrose, IHM, who died in 1915.]

[See page 66 of Irene Leahy Coveney's account that states four daughters of Dennis and Catherine Flynn Keefe became nuns. There is no information available on them. Ellen (Nellie) Kelly Bradley's account that her Aunt Catherine had three daughters who became nuns may be more accurate. If so, there are two, not four, daughters of Dennis and Catherine Flynn Keefe who became nuns. Their names and the names of their religious communities are unknown. Catherine Flynn Keefe Cusick's other daughter who became a nun is Sister M. Ambrose, IHM.]

24. Michael James Kelly, son of James and Johanna Flynn Kelly, was thrown from a horse when young. The Sisters of Mercy in Towanda, Pennsylvania got holy water from Lourdes, and Michael James Kelly was able to walk for the first time in three months. Later, Michael James Kelly fell from a barn roof, and his father sent him West.

[The Sisters of Mercy arrived in Towanda, on September 8, 1877 from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The incident described above by Ellen (Nellie) Kelly Bradley must have occurred after that date.]

25. Ellen (Nellie) Kelly said that she had not seen her brother, Michael James Kelly, for 15 years when she arrived in Colorado in 1883.

[This statement contradicts Ellen (Nellie) Kelly Bradley's other statement that she was present sometime after September 8, 1877 when her brother, Michael James Kelly, was able to walk for the first time in three months. Alternatively, Ellen (Nellie) Kelly Bradley may have attended boarding school at St. Joseph's Academy in Binghamton, New York beginning in 1868 and saw little or none of her brother, Michael James Kelly, after that date.]

26. Mary Kelly Corcoran arrived in Colorado in 1884 with six children, two stepsons, and Theresa or Tessie, the little girl raised by Johanna Flynn Kelly from 18 months.

[Presumably, Michael Corcoran was a widower with two sons when he married Mary Kelly Corcoran. There is no information known of the parents of Theresa or Tessie, the little girl raised by Johanna Flynn Kelly from 18 months.]

27. James Kelly came West and lived with Michael and Mary Kelly Corcoran.

28. On April 14, 1884, Ellen (Nellie) Kelly and Lewis Harding Bradley were married. Before the marriage, Lewis Harding Bradley, a native of Iowa, became a convert to Catholicism after instruction by Father Servant in Grand Junction, Colorado.

29. On July 3, 1885, Lewis and Ellen (Nellie) Kelly Bradley's son, Joseph W. Bradley, was born in Grand Junction, Colorado.

[Joseph Bradley is the father of Reverend Richard S. Bradley, SJ; Reverend Robert I. Bradley, SJ; and Reverend Theodore F.X. Bradley, Diocese of Spokane, Washington.]

30. In spring 1886, the Michael and Mary Kelly Corcoran Family moved to their own home, a farm three miles west of Grand Junction, Colorado and left Theresa or Tessie, now 10 years old, with William Kelly.

31. Genevieve (Jennie) Daley came to Grand Junction, Colorado from St. Louis, Missouri in 1886 and married William Kelly, son of James and Johanna Flynn Kelly.

32. In 1886, Lewis and Ellen (Nellie) Kelly Bradley's baby died.

33. In autumn 1886, Lewis and Ellen (Nellie) Kelly Bradley moved from their farm to Grand Junction, Colorado.

34. On September 8, 1887, Lewis and Ellen (Nellie) Kelly Bradley's daughter, Mary Elizabeth (Bessie) Bradley, was born.

[Mary Elizabeth (Bessie) Bradley Duffy is the mother of Sister M. Ellen Joan, SNJM. See more about Sister Duffy under her genealogical entry at the end of this page.

35. Lewis Bradley freighted to the town of Glenwood Springs, 100 miles up the Grand River.

36. On March 6, 1889, Lewis and Ellen (Nellie) Kelly Bradley's son, Louis Francis Bradley, was born.

37. In 1889 and 1890, conditions became worse in the mining industry, and the mines in Aspen, Colorado were shut down.

38. In June 1890, Lewis and Ellen (Nellie) Kelly Bradley moved with their family from Aspen, Colorado to Snowmass, Colorado.

39. On July 21, 1891, Lewis and Ellen (Nellie) Kelly Bradley's daughter, Helen Evangeline Bradley, was born.

[Helen Evangeline Bradley is Sister M. Evangeline, SNJM.]

40. In winter 1892, Lewis Bradley was first sick with heart trouble.

41. On December 12, 1892, Lewis and Ellen {Nellie} Kelly Bradley's daughter, Leonella Margaret Bradley, was born.  Margaret was Leonella Margaret Bradley's grandmother's name.

[Leonella Margaret Bradley is Sister M. Ermelindis, SNJM.]

42. On October 21, 1894, Lewis and Ellen {Nellie} Kelly Bradley's daughter, Frances Eleanor Bradley, was born.

[Frances Eleanor Bradley is Sister M. Helen Elizabeth, SNJM.]

43. In winter 1894, Lewis Bradley was sick. This illness marked the end of his teaming and much of anything else. Lewis Bradley was never the same after this. Even when he seemed to be well, Lewis Bradley had no ambition to do anything except a little carpentry repair work.

44. On June 5, 1896, Lewis and Ellen (Nellie} Kelly Bradley's daughter, Nellie Bernadette Bradley, was born.

45. In summer 1898, Mary Kelly Corcoran's daughter, Rose Corcoran Hines, with her daughter, Zita, 18 months old, visited Lewis and Ellen {Nellie} Kelly Bradley and their family.

46. On February 7, 1899, Lewis and Ellen {Nellie} Kelly Bradley's son, Franklin John Bradley, was born.

47. On March 28, 1902, Lewis and Ellen {Nellie} Kelly Bradley's daughter, Nellie Bernadette Bradley, died from untreated appendicitis.

48. The summers of 1902 and 1903 were difficult times for Lewis and Ellen {Nellie} Kelly Bradley and their family.

49. On December 29, 1903, Lewis and Ellen {Nellie} Kelly Bradley's son, Joseph W. Bradley, arrived in Spokane, Washington from Aspen, Colorado.

50. On June 1, 1905, Lewis and Ellen {Nellie} Kelly Bradley's daughter, Mary Elizabeth {Bessie} Bradley, graduated from high school in Aspen, Colorado.

51. On June 12, 1905, Ellen (Nellie) Kelly Bradley arrived with her children in Spokane, Washington from Aspen, Colorado. Aunt Annie gave them money for the journey.

52. Lewis Bradley remained alone in Aspen, Colorado until ill health forced him in 1926 to join his wife, Ellen {Nellie} Kelly Bradley, and their family in Spokane, Washington.

Editor's Note: Let us quote Ed directly in a message of January 25, 2009 to Bob Sweeney, the administrator of the Sullivan County Genealogical Web Page:

Papers in my possession indicate that William S. Kelly and his wife Lucy (sic) purchased the farm of Will's parents, James and Johanna Flynn Kelly, on Kelly Hill, Forks Township, Sullivan County, PA for $1,300 on April 21, 1877. On March 11, 1880. William S. Kelly and his wife Lucy (sic) sold the farm to Will's sister Mary and her husband Michael Corcoran for $2,000. On October 16, 1883, Michael and Mary Kelly Corcoran sold the farm to Mary's first cousin and my paternal grandfather, William P. Kelly, for $4,000. According to Ellen (Nellie) Kelly Bradley's account, Michael Corcoran went to Colorado in October 1883. Michael Corcoran's wife Mary and their children joined him in the spring of 1884. The Corcorans were among the first white people to settle on land formerly the Ute Reservation near Grand Junction, Coloardo.
Based on the information summarized below from papers in my possessions, it would appear that William S. Kelly and his family moved from Pennsylvania to Colorado in 1880. Will's daughter Lucy was born in Colorado and baptized there in August 1881. Thus Will and his family did not move West in 1882 as Nellie's commentary states.
According to Ellen (Nellie) Kelly Bradley's account, Will sent her a letter in March 1883 in which he informs her of his wife Ellen's death. There appears to be no basis for the statement that Ellen Sullivan Kelly's death occurred one month after the birth of her daughter Lucy. If that were true, Ellen would have died in September 1881. Since Will Kelly wrote the letter to his sister Nellie in March 1883, it would appear that Ellen had died only recently and certainly not in September 1881. According to Nellie's account, Will's daughter Mary was not yet three years old and Will's daughter Lucy was one and a half years old in March 1883.
We know that Lucy was born in August 1881. According to Ken Beirne's Index, Will's daugther Mary was born in February 1880.

53.  Here is a partial genealogy for the relationships involving the Kelly and Bradley  families discussed here:


Ellen (Nellie) Kelly Bradley (1856-1945)

wife of Lewis Harding Bradley (1856-1929)

Daughter of James and Johanna Flynn Kelly

Sister of Sister M. Evangelist Kelly, CSJ (1853-1900)

Niece of

Daniel and Mary Ann Leahy Kelly

Michael and Mary O'Brien Kelly

John and Ann Quinn Kelly

 James and Hanora Kelly Sullivan

Mother of

      Sister M. Evangeline Bradley, SNJM (1891-1985)

 Sister M. Ermelindis Bradley, SNJM (1892-1979)  

  Sister M. Helen Elizabeth Bradley, SNJM (1894-1975)

Grandmother of

  Reverend Richard S. Bradley, SJ (1920-1999)

 Reverend Robert I. Bradley, SJ (1924-2013 *)
* Editor's Note: Here is an Obituary.

Reverend Theodore F.X. Bradley (1926-----)

 Sister M. Joan Ellen Duffy, SNJM (1928----- ) **

** Editor's Note: Jubilee, 2009 is published by the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary, 2911 West Fort George Wright Drive, Spokane, WA 99224. According to this release, among the sisters celebrating jubilees in 2009 was Sister M. Ellen Joan Duffy, SNJM, celebrating the 60th year of her religious profession. Sister Ellen Joan is a great granddaughter of James and Johanna Flynn Kelly, a granddaughter of Lewis and Ellen (Nellie) Kelly Bradley, and a daughter of James and Mary Elizabeth (Bessie) Bradley Duffy. The Inland Register, published by the same order, includes a picture of Sister Ellen Joan, which is reproduced here, from its July 2009 issue.

Sister M. Ellen Joseph Duffy
Sixtieth Jubilee 2009
Photo Source: Inland Register, Spokane, WA, July 2009


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