JAY GAGER 132/1
Jay was the first child of our Achsah 132 and the Quaker, Herbert Gager. Our records show Jay 132/1's April 2, 1823 birth date with no marriage or death dates, so his life was a mystery to us. Now, thanks to the discovery of his marriage, the story of his posterity can be told.
We knew both his parents came, as children with their families, to Upper Canada from NY state by different routes. The Gagers and other Quakers followed Timothy Rogers to Yonge Street. The Codys were so neighborly to the newcomers that when Achsah's father, Joseph 49, died in 1810, they buried him in their graveyard.
Two of Achsah's brothers married Yonge Street Quakers, then on March 14, 1822, our 23 year-old Achsah 132 married the 25 year-old Herbert Gager. However, the Yonge Street Meeting disowned "Hibbert" on the 16th of the First Month of 1823 for marrying outside the faith and threatening violence. He apologized and they took the newlyweds back and put them under their care. Whatever Herbert's apology, Newmarket was becoming crowded and with the new baby, it seemed a good time to move on.
Herbert and Achsah went to Pickering Township about 40 miles SE of Newmarket. There was a large Quaker community, the salmon fishery, a meetinghouse and Timothy Rogers' grist mill. Jay's brother William 132/2 was born there in 1825. Life was good, Achsah and Herbert added four more children by 1832.
Then, they moved about 20 miles north to Victoria County, where Achsah had relatives in Mariposa Township. There she birthed the twins and three more, making 11 by 1843. Jay was now a young Quaker man of 20 years, looking for a wife and thinking about having his own family. There, the record ended.
Now come descendants claiming lineage from Jay 132/1, petitioners with evidence of their discovery of "A List of Marriages Solemnized by me Wm Hurlburt, Baptist Minister at Reach in the Home District" with the April 7, 1845 marriage of Jay Gager to Maram Jones, both of Mariposa, by Bands, witnessed by Charles Finten and Ann Edwards. We wonder, in the hinterland of Mariposa Township, where did Jay get the ring?
The witness, Charles Finten (aka Fenton), was the operator of the Stage House in Manilla. As the boss, he would be unlikely to stray far from his responsibilities, even for a day, so its very likely he hosted their wedding at his inn.
The other witness, Ann (Williams) Edwards, lived in Manilla. In 1845, she had just turned 21 and was married with two children. The Williams and the Edwards families came from Wales in 1831. Possibly, Ann worked at the Stage House or was a friend of Maram's, a bridesmaid of sorts.
Now we see the Gager boy married the Jones girl. What happened after the ceremony? Where are the parents? Like his father, Jay would be disowned for marrying outside. Perhaps the lovers eloped! They ran away to find work, to build a life together. Without horses, they would take the stagecoach, probably south.
The next discovery we examine is the 1852 Census of the Province of Canada, Canada West for Subdistrict 244, Whitby Township, Ontario County, page 303, which lists Jay Gager, ("Labourer" born in Upper Canada, his religion is "Friend", age 27, male) and wife Mary (born in England, Christian in belief, age 25, female) with their children, Alvin (age 7), Richmond Dudley (age 5), Salina (age 3) and Henry (age 1) on lines 12 through 17.
Here, Jay is age 27, which disagrees with the April 2, 1823 birthdate given in our 2013 Genealogy. "His age next birthday" should be 29 or 30, when he was eneumerated in early 1852. Jay's religion is listed as "Friend", his parents legacy. This census records only 99 Quakers in Whitby. His wife, named here as Mary, was born in England, Christian, age 25. We note their first child, Alvin's birth date compliments their reported marriage date. While the records don't exactly match, considering how few Quakers were in Whitby, it is very unlikely that this is a different Jay Gager than our Jay 132/1.
There we have it, or do we? Checking the 1861 Canadian Census, we find no Jay Gager. He has disappeared again. Here family tradition provides guidance, for Acsah 132's bio says that Herbert took the family to Winnisheik County in Iowa in 1853. So we check the 1860 Federal Census for Iowa.
On page 124, Township of Fremont, here's line 18 with Dwelling House #886, Family #850 showing Herbert Gager, age 61, male, Farmer, born in New York. Line 19 is Mary Gager, 33, female, born Canada West. Line 20 has Griffin Gager, age 31, male, Carpenter, born Canada West. Line 21 has Susan, age 16, female, line 22 has Bradford age 13, male and line 23 with Dudley age 12, male, all born Canada West and all in school. Herbert is Achsah's husband, Mary is their daughter Mary Gager 132/3, Griffin is our Griffin Gager 132/4 and Susan is our Susan Gager 132/B. Dudley is Richmond Dudley 132/12 from the 1851-52 Canadian Census, the second child of our Jay and Mary Gager.
Bradford, on line 22 is unknown to us. Achsah and Herbert had the twins Elford and Bradford in 1835 and our records show that Bradford died in 1836. While searching for more, we found others with the same questions, so we refer you to them.
The same page records another Gager family next door at Dwelling House #887, Family # 851. On line 24 is William Gager, age 35, male, Farmer born Canada West. On line 25 is William’s wife, Francis M, 25, female, born New York. Line 26 is Charles, age 4, male, born Iowa, and line 27 is Allen, age 2, male, born in Iowa. Our records indicate that the William shown here is our William Gager 132/2 with his first wife, Francis Maria West, and their two children, Charles Jamain 132/21 and Allen Thomas 132/22. Here's more proof of Achsah 132's summary bio, that Herbert and his sons William and Griffin have moved to Iowa. But what of Nelson 132/5, Achsah and Herbert's fifth child?
By the fall of 1853, Nelson Gager was "first man on the ground" in Orleans Township, Winnesheik County, Iowa, finally settling on the NE Quarter of Section 9 in 1854. There, he built a log house in 1855 and married Mary Gager in 1859. Below, we see his application to the U.S. Department of Labor, Immigration and Naturalization, his "green card".
We find Nelson Gager and his extended family on page 134 in the 1860 Federal Census for Orleans Township in Winneshiek County, Iowa. He's on line 27, at Dwelling House #963, Family #922, age 29, male, Farmer, born Canada West. On line 28 is his wife, Mary A. Gager, age 33, female, born in England. Line 29 is their baby, Alpheus W., age 1, born in Iowa. Line 30 is Alvin (the name is faint, but readable), age 14, male, born in Canada West. Line 31 is Salina, age 10, female, born Canada West. Line 32 is Wilson M., age 8, male, born Canada West, all attending school. We conclude that the family group of Mary A. with children, Alvin, Dudley and Salina in the 1860 census are the same people as those listed in the 1851-52 census. Also, that Nelson Gager is Jay's brother, Nelson 132/5.
To summarize; the 1860 Federal Census records show that Achsah 132's family, husband Herbert and children, William 132/2, Mary 132/3, Griffin 132/4, Nelson 132/5 and Susan 132/B, came to Winnesheik County, IA and were living there in 1860. This confirms our record of Herbert moving his family to Iowa in 1853. They were joined by Jay's wife, Mary A. with their children, Alvin 132/11, Dudley 132/12, Salina 132/13 and Wilson M. 132/15, who were distributed between Herbert and Nelson's households.
But this research produced some mysteries; Jay and Mary's son, Henry of the 1852 Canadian Census disappeared, replaced by Wilson M. in the 1860 Federal Census. Bradford, born in 1847, appeared spontaneously and Jay's absence is still unexplained. Moreover, as we'll see, Alpheus W. disappears and Wesley emerges. Unsettled by these developments, its time to look around and get our bearings.
Where is Winnesheik County? In the northeast corner of Iowa on the Minnesota line. Here, we find Nelson Gager farming 75 acres of Section 9, on Silver Creek in Orleans Township.
The Manca's testimony included a tragic incident where Marshall William Gager died Christmas Eve 1904 after a trollycar accident in Minneapolis. Research discovered his death certificate which cited his father and mother as Jay Gager and Mary A. Jones. Despite the mis-spelling of his burial place as "Cusco" IA, his birth place in Upper Canada and estimated birth date of 1851 agree with the 1860 Federal Census. This is compelling evidence that the Marshall Gager of the death record is the same person as the Marshall Gager of Winnesheik County Iowa. His birth place and date also agees with the 1851 Canadian Census, if he is the "Henry" enumerated there.
This prompted research that revealed Nelson Gager's marriage record of June, 29 1858 in the office of John Cleghorn, Justice of the Peace at Elliota, Filmore County MN, to Mary Ann Gager, both of Winneshiek County IA. At last we know Mary A.’s middle name! "Mary Ann" sounds a lot like "Maram", more evidence that the Maram Jones of Hurlburt’s marriage record is the same person as the Mary A. of the 1851 Canadian census, who is the same person as this Mary Ann, the bride of Nelson Gager 132/5.
Elliota, their marriage place, was a stagecoach stop between Dubuque and St. Paul. Nelson took the wagon up there to meet Mary Ann and the kids when they arrived from Ontario via Toronto, Windsor Locks, Detroit, Chicago, Galena and DuBuque. For Momma and the kids, it must have been quite a journey. No doubt Nelson heard all about it on the way back to his farm on Silver Creek.
Our searches so far, were for textual evidence as found in books and records. Searching for images, instead of text, yielded these portraits of Nelson and Mary Ann Gager, colorized here for you. The Internet is rich with nuggets if you know how to mine them.
Research also revealed Elford Gager 132/7's marriage to Sarah Eliza Bunnem of January 15 1862 at the Stanwix Hotel in Preston by William S. Marsh, Justice of the Peace, Fillmore County MN, more evidence that Achsah 132 and Herbert Gager’s family of Upper Canada were the same people as this Gager Family in Iowa. Their residence, New Oregon, once the county seat, was near Shook’s Grove, where Cresco was established when the railroad came through in 1866.
132/1 Jay Gager b Upper Canada 4/2/1823 d ?/?/? m1 Manilla Mariposa Township Canada West 4/7/1845 Mary Ann Jones b England 8/18/1825 d 9/8/1904 bur Oak Lawn, Cresco, Howard Co. IA
And their children;
132/11 Alvin Herbert Gager b Canada 11/20/1845 d 1/7/1935 bur Oak Lawn Cemetery Cresco Howard Co IA m1 Elmore MN 6/4/1871 Emma Nancie Monroe b c1853 d 5/18/1888 bur Dorsey Cemetery O'Neill NE
132/12 Richmond Dudley Gager b 10/25/1847 d 12/6/1917 bur Dorsey Cemetery O'Neill NE m1 ?/?/? Margaret b 1861 d 12/8/1883 bur Dorsey Cemetery O'Neill NE
132/15 Wilson (aka William) Marshall Gager b Canada West 1/2/1852 d Minneapolis MN 12/24/1904 bur Oak Lawn Cemetery Cresco Howard Co IA m1 Mary Clarissa Wentworth b Kingsey Township Drummond Co Canada East 1/15/1855 d Oct. 14 1925 bur Hillside Cemetery Minneapolis MN
For Mary Ann's sake, we include Nelson's record and then their children;
132/5 Nelson Gager b Pickering ON 4/21/1831 d Cresco Howard Co IA 2/10/1916 bur Oak Lawn Cemetery Cresco Howard Co IA m1 Elliota Canton Township Fillmore Co MN 6/29/1858 Mary Ann Gager b 8/18/1825 d 9/8/1904 bur Oak Lawn Cemetery Cresco Howard Co IA
132/51 Alpheus Wesley Gager b IA 1/?/1860 d 1941 bur Oak Lawn Cemetery Cresco Howard Co IA m1 Howard Co IA 12/28/1898 Helen Gill b NY 1/?/1865 d 1940 bur Oak Lawn Cemetery Cresco Howard Co IA
132/52 Elmer E Gager b IA 5/?/1863 d Cresco Howard Co IA 1/1/1908 bur Oak Lawn Cemetery Cresco Howard Co IA m1 Howard Co IA 1/1/1889 Jennie M Dickinson b IA 8/?/1866 d Vernon Springs Howard Co IA 7/23/1921 bur Oak Lawn Cemetery Cresco Howard Co IA
Having identified the descendant's Alvin H. Gager as the first child of our Jay Gager 132/1 and his wife, Maram Jones, we now continue with the descendant's testimony of their lineage from Alvin H. Gager 132/11, calculating their Cody IDs and formatting their records as;
132/111 Ralph Ellis Gager b IA 4/29/1875 d 4/1966 bur Memorial Park Davenport IA m1 Cresco IA 1896 Charlotte Marie Beckett b McGregor IA 10/29/1880 d Mansfield MO 9/21/1977 bur Memorial Park Davenport IA
132/1113 Alice Louise Gager b Cresco Howard Co IA 9/15/1902 d Reno Washoe Co NV 12/12/1997 bur Mountain View Cemetery Reno Washoe Co NV m1 Iowa Falls IA 9/1/1923 Arthur Harold Nichols b Cresco Howard Co IA 1/7/1902 d Reno Washoe Co NV 2/1/1990 bur Mountain View Cemetery Reno Washoe Co NV
132/11131 Gene Ray Nichols b Iowa Falls IA 4/17/1925 d Reno Washoe Co NV 8/17/2011 bur Mountain View Cemetery Reno Washoe Co NV m1 Lee IL 5/23/1948 Marilyn Eileen Herrmann b DeKalb IL 2/11/1928 d Sparks NV 3/16/2015 bur Mountain View Cemetery Reno Washoe Co NV
132/111311 Craig Eugene Nichols b Davenport IA 6/12/1949 m1 Reno Washoe Co NV 3/18/1973 Denise Dola Brasel b Eglin FL 2/7/1955 div Phoenix AZ 2/17/1993 m2 Reno Washoe Co NV 9/18/2010 Sonya Okhui Harris b Seoul KR 10/3/1950
132/1113113 Karen Louise Manca b Rockford IL 12/2/1954 m1 Reno Washoe Co NV 6/4/1977 Craig Seth Manca b Elko NV 4/12/1954 div 8/5/2005
The evidence has proved Nick and Karen Manca's Petition for Certification of Lineage from Jay Gager 132/1 through his son Alvin H. Gager 132/1. That's how we do it!
We'd like to thank them for their interest in the ICFA and their help in proving this line.
And to all of you, thanks for your attention, check your records and tell us what you know!