Rebecca Forchee Article



THE STAR-NEWS REGISTER, Bonne Terre, St. Francois County, Missouri, August 4, 1936.

Pages and even volumes on the life of Sam Hildebrand have been written and published locally and in St. Francois County, bearing on his life and death, including various incidents that took place during his time.

While the story that follows is brief and does not give any description of the many happenings that made him famous, [it] is, however, a correct history of his birth and early life on a farm and also gives the names of his immediate family and the family of his Grandfather.

There is no doubt that the story is correct in every detail and gives facts that have not been commonly known heretofore.

Mrs. Rebecca (Hildebrand) Forshee, who is now visiting in Bonne Terre and is the daughter of Sam Hildebrand, has given this paper the facts which are printed here below and in her own words.


"There have been many who have tried to write the story of Sam Hildebrand, and many who have claimed to have the true story of his life and even go as far as having it published in the newspapers, but being his daughter I find that they are mostly fiction. These stories do not even have the right names of the Hildebrand families. Now I am going to tell you some of the real facts of my fathers life.

"My grandmother and grandfather, George and Rebecca Hildebrand who was Sam Hildebrand's father and mother, settled in St. Francois County, Missouri on Big River, in 1832, and opened one of the best farms in this part of the country.

"My grandmother and grandfather raised a family of ten children consisting of seven boys and three girls. Samuel S. Hildebrand was the fifth one in the family and was born at the old homestead on Big River, St. Francois County, Missouri, on the 6th day of January, 1836.

"In 1850 his father died, but he still remained at the old homestead working for the support of his mother and the rest of the family until he reached the age of nineteen years, then on the 20th day of October 1854, he married Miss Margaret Hampton, the daughter of a highly esteemed citizen of St. Francois County, and opened a farm of his own, within half mile of the old homestead. To this union were born seven children four girls and three boys, six of whom lived to be grown. They were namely Henry, Rebecca, Mary, Nancy, Anne, George and Sam. Those who are still living are Rebecca who married Joseph Forshee, who died in 1923. Rebecca is now living in St. Louis with her youngest daughter but spends much of her time in St. Francois county with her children, Anne who married Abraham Williams, now living in Renton, Washington, and George who now makes his home in Flat River. Now I might add here that I am Rebecca Hildebrand and certainly am proud of the name, and contrary to other stories there never was a Hildebrand who was ashamed of the name because they never had anything to be ashamed of, and I don't think there ever will be one ashamed of his name.

"Although my father killed many men during his life, but I know that he did not kill any one who did not deserve it. And he never killed a woman or child or even harmed one, and I firmly believe that God was with him continually."

By Mrs. Rebecca (Hildebrand) Forshee.

NOTE: Sam's daughter, Rebecca, who wrote the above article, died May 3, 1948, and is buried at Primrose Cemetery near Bonne Terre, Missouri, with her husband, Joseph, who died in May of 1923. On their tombstone, their last name is spelled "Forchee", not "Forshee" as is printed in above article. Also, her obituaries below have her last name spelled as "Forchee" as well.

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Mrs. Rebecca Forchee was born March 12, 1858 and died at the home of her daughter, Mrs. Daley Dotson, in Bonne Terre, on May 3, 1948, at the advanced age of 90 years, 1 month and 22 days. She was daughter of Sam and Margaret Hampton Hildebrand. On April 18, 1877, she was married to Joseph Forchee, who died in May, 1923. She is survived by two sons and five daughters, 41 grandchildren, 63 great-grandchildren and seven great-great-grandchildren; one sister, Mrs. Abraham Williams, of Seattle, Wash. One son and one daughter preceded her in death many years ago. The surviving chldren are: J. R. Forchee, of High Ridge, Mo.; Sam, of Desloge; Mrs. Ella Barron, of Eureka, Mo.; Mrs. Arizona Dotson of Bonne Terre; Mrs. Anna Marler of Leadwood; Mrs. Jessie Hobaugh of Leadington, and Mrs. Myrtle Albaugh, of Farmington.

Funeral services were conducted by Rev. Towler from Bonne Terre Baptist Church on Wednesday, May 5th. Burial was in Primrose Cemetery with Hood Service.
FARMINGTON NEWS, Farmington, Mo., Friday, May 7, 1948.


Mrs. Rebecca Forchee, widow of Joseph Forchee, died on Monday, May 3, 1948 in Bonne Terre, Missouri, aged 90 years, 1 month 21 days. She was the widow of Joseph Forchee and the daughter of the late Sam and Margaret Hampton Hildebrand.

The body was taken to the home of a daughter, Mrs. Dailey Dotson, 103 North B Street, Bonne Terre. Funeral services were held at the Bonne Terre Baptist Church Wednesday, May 5 at 2:00 p.m., conducted by the pastor, Rev. Ernest W. Towler. Interment Primrose Cemetery. Alvin Hood Service.

She is survived by five daughters and two sons: J. R. Forchee, High Ridge, Mo.; Mrs. Ella M. Barren, Eureka, Mo.; Mrs. Dailey (Arizona) Dotson, Bonne Terre; Mrs. Henry (Anna) Marler, Leadwood; Mrs. Eli (Jessie) Hobaugh, Leadington; Sam Forchee, Desloge and Mrs. Wesley (Myrtle) Albaugh, Farmington. A daughter, Mrs. Charles Lawson and an infant son preceded her in death. She is also survived by 41 grandchildren, 63 great-grandchildren and seven great-great grandchildren; also one sister, Mrs. Abraham Williams of Seattle, Washington,
THE LEAD BELT NEWS, Friday, May 7, 1948.