Yours, Mine and Ours – Twenty Kids!

As a father and step father, my grandfather David cared for twenty children!

My great great-grandfather, David Allen, was a farmer and a rancher for most of his life.  My grandfather was born in Somerset County, Pennsylvania in 1810, and his parents were Philip and Nancy “Ann” Wilcox.  By the time he was four years old, his family was living in Monroe County, Ohio.

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David Allen

For most of his life, David and his family resided in Ohio.  His first wife was Pauline Panina Hill; she was born in 1809 in New York, and she died 8 Mar 1853 in Washington, Monroe, Ohio.  With his first wife, David had thirteen children:  Gideon (1832), Ann (1833), Elias (1834), Avery (1836), Lewis (1837), Mary (1839), Philip (1841), Elizabeth (1843), Ezekiel (1843), Sarah (1845), Perlina (1847), Pauline Panina (1847), and David (1848).

With his second wife, Sarah Hupp, he had four children:  Henry (1853), Louisa (1854), Elijah (1858), and Aaron (1861).  This was also the second marriage for my great great-grandmother, Sarah Hupp.  Her first husband was William Archer, and he died on 17 Jul 1847 in Noble county, Ohio.  Sarah and William had three children: Hannah (1843), Edward (1845), and Matilda (1847).  As a father and step father, my grandfather David cared for twenty children!

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Allen and Meeker Party

When the patriarch of the family decided to move to Colorado, ten of his children and their families, 44 family members in all moved with him.  They loaded their belongings, wagons, and livestock on railroad cars.  From stories told, the families just left their breakfast dishes behind on the day of their departure.  They also had to wait five days while my great grandmother, Ann Payton, decided if she wanted to marry my great grandfather, Henry Allen.  Once she agreed and married Henry, the family left Ohio and traveled to Evans, Colorado in 1885.  They took the wagons from the train and reassembled them.  They packed their belongings and took their livestock and headed to Meeker, Colorado. They spent the winter in Meeker.

Some of the family stayed in Meeker, but some headed for Hotchkiss in the spring of 1886.  When they came to the Colorado River, they drove their covered wagons over the railroad bridge at Grand Junction.  Many of the Allens settled on the west end of Roger’s Mesa.  David and Sarah settled in Hotchkiss.

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Roger’s Mesa
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Roger’s Mesa

My grandfather’s oldest son, Gideon, died during the Civil War in Danville, Kentucky in 1863.  He died of the measles.  His daughter, Ann, vanished without a trace.  Little Elias died when he was about four years old in 1839.  Avery married and had a family.  In 1910, he and his wife lived in San Diego, California.  Lewis married and had a family of his own.  For a time, he lived in Meeker, Colorado, but he eventually moved to San Diego too.  Mary married Sarah Hupp’s younger brother, John.  She died in 1905 in Jackson, West Virginia.  Philip married and lived in Meeker, Colorado.  He also served in the Civil War.  Elizabeth also disappeared without leaving any records of her life.  Ezekiel married and settled in Meeker.  Sarah married and lived in Delta, but in 1910, she lived in San Diego, and in 1920, she lived in Los Angeles.  Perlina was another mystery, for I could not find any records for her.  Pauline Panina married and settled in Meeker.  David married and made his way to Oregon.

Henry and his family moved to Hotchkiss.  Louisa married and stayed in Ohio.  Elijah moved to Colorado, but later settled in Tuolumne County in California.  Aaron married and also remained in Ohio.

Hannah married and stayed in Ohio, but later moved to Indiana.  Edward died on 29 July 1863 after fighting in the Ezra Church Battle in Fulton County, Georgia, and Matilda also married and stayed in Ohio, but eventually settled in Indiana too.

David and his son, Henry, assisted in surveying the Allen Mesa Ditch, and it is still called that to this day.  David had a talent for taking care of animals, and he was often called upon for his veterinarian services.  Sarah was called the “Egg Lady,” for she raised chickens and sold their eggs.  They lived on Roger’s Mesa until their deaths, and they are both buried at the Riverside Cemetery in Hotchkiss.  David died in 1896, and he was 86 years old. Sarah died when she was 92 years old in 1914.

 

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