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The Post War Wanderings of Calvin Croy

 Young Calvin Croy about 1870My great grandfather, husband of Sarah Angeline Smith and father of Lydia Mae (Ralph,) Charles Henry, Justus Leonice, William Duncan, Albert Lloyd, Gardner Lester, David Harrison, and two females who died early.

Calvin Croy most likely stood for this picture in about 1870. I base this on the bowler hat, stand up collar, and necktie. (I do not claim any expertise in photo dating, so if someone can provide a better estimate I would love to hear from you.) He mustered out of the Civil War on July 20, 1865 in Louisville, Kentucky and married on December 12, 1872 in Coshocton County, Ohio. By tracing his movement from the time of his mustering out to his death, one sees a man who moved often and struggled to find a livelihood.

As always, the documentation provides the outline, and the story falls in between. Luckily, he identified with his service and joined a Kansas Civil War organization that tracked his movement in even more detail than the census. By 1900, having spent over 20 years moving from place to place and job to job, he settled on coal mining for his livelihood. He finally moved to Henryetta, Oklahoma in late 1901 at age 54 and died there on June, 12, 1922, spending 21 years of his life there.

But to quote the infamous Joe Friday, “Just the facts, Ma’am, just the facts.”

  • July 13, 1870 he lived in Fairfield, Washington County, Ohio with his parents, brother Nathan who was listed as a farmer, his two sisters, Emily and Frances. He was listed as a farm laborer. [i]
  • June 8, 1880 he lived in Keene Township, Coshocton County, Ohio with his wife Sarah Angeline, daughter Lydia and sons Charles and Justus. He was listed as working at a saw mill.[ii]
  • June 10, 1885 he lived in Spencer, Richardson, Nebraska with his wife and children, with a new child, William D. He was listed as a laborer.[iii]
  • January 1, 1887 he lived in Seneca, Nemeha County, Kansas and worked as a farmer. iv
  • 1892 and 1893 he lived in Pleasanton Township, Linn County, Kansas and was a miner[iv]
  • March 1, 1895 he lived at 428 Kelley and 7th Street, Fort Scott, Bourbon County, Kansas with his wife and children including a new child, David. He is listed as a miner[v]
  • 1897returned to Pleasanton Township, Linn County, Kansas and was a mineriv
  • June 9, 1900 he rented a house in Potosi, Pleasanton Township, Linn County, Kansas with his family. Charles and Lydia have left the home. He, Willie, and Justus are listed as coal miners.[vi]
  • 1901 membership suspended in Jewel post #3 of Kansas, Grand Army of Republic Pleasanton Township, Linn County, Kansas.iv
  • April 28, 1910 he rented a house in Henryetta, Okmulgee County, Oklahoma with his wife and sons David and Gardner. He, David, and Gardner are listed as coal miners. They were all out of work for 12 weeks in 1909.
  • January 19, 1920 he owned a home on Bluff St. in Henryetta, Okmulgee County, Oklahoma with his wife and sons William and David and grandsons Willie and Eugene. He and his sons are listed as coal miners.[vii]

Next: His wife, Sarah Angeline Smith Croy and her mother’s family-The Paynes.

[i] Census date: 1870 Census Place: Fairfield, Washington, Ohio; Roll: M593_1278; Page: 116A; Image: 236; Family History Library Film: 552777
[ii] Census date: 1880 Census Place: Keene, Coshocton, Ohio; Roll: 1003; Family History Film: 1255003; Page: 115C; Enumeration District: 048; Image: 0234
[iii] National Archives and Records Administration; Nebraska State Census; Year: 1885; Series/Record Group: M352; County: Richardson; Township: Spencer; Page: 18.
iv Kansas, Grand Army of the Republic Post Reports, 1880-1940 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations, Inc., 2010. This collection was indexed by Ancestry World Archives Project contributors.Original data: Kansas Grand Army of the Republic Post Reports, 1880-1943. Topeka, Kansas: Kansas Historical Society. Loose paper, 104 boxes.
[v] Kansas State Census Collection, 1855-1925 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations Inc, 2009.
[vi] Year: 1900; Census Place: Pleasanton, Linn, Kansas; Roll: 487; Page: 9B; Enumeration District: 0117; FHL microfilm: 1240487.
[vii] Source Citation: Year: 1920; Census Place: Henryetta Ward 1, Okmulgee, Oklahoma; Roll: T625_1476; Page: 12B; Enumeration District: 115; Image: 757.

About croywright

The author, a writer of history and historical fiction, always yearned to go back in time.

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