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Catherine (Welker) Tucker


Catherine (Welker) Tucker was born on May 30, 1809 in Southampton Township, Somerset County, the daughter of John and Elizabeth (Gaumer) Welker Sr. Her birth occurred after her parents relocated to Ohio, so it's possible her birthplace actually was in Knox County. 

At the age of 17, on July 27 or Aug. 2, 1826, she was joined in holy wedlock with 20-year-old Jones Tucker (1806-1870), also spelled "Jonas." He was a native of Somerset County and the son of William and Rachel (Jones) Tucker. Justice of the peace Benjamin Butler officiated at the wedding ceremony. 

Jones is profiled in the 1881 book compiled by N.N. Hill entitled History of Knox County, Ohio: Its Past and Present. The entry reads that he:

... was brought to Knox county, Ohio, by his parents ... in 1811, who settled in Union township near Mt. Holly or Gann station. William Tucker erected a log cabin which served his family as an abode for a number of years. He followed clearing, farming, hunting, and fishing as his vocation. There were but few settlers in the neighborhood, and they were far apart at the time of Mr. Tucker's settlement in the township.

The couple produced these known children -- Elizabeth Tinker, Barnett Tucker, William Tucker, John Tucker, Wilson Tucker, Mary Frances Tucker, James Tucker and perhaps others.


Map of Fayette County, Illinois, 1875

After 13 years in Knox County, the family relocated to Fayette County, IL in 1839. Reported the Vandalia (IL) Leader many years later: 

Jonas and his family migrated further west on the newly constructed National Road to its termination in Vandalia where they settled in about 1839. The National Road was no 'ribbon of concrete'. Specifications for the Road required a cleared thirty foot wide route, but allowed large stumps to remain in the Road to a height up to fifteen inches. No doubt the emigrant family of Tuckers traveled the Road at a crawling pace in a canvas covered wagon in which the mother Katherine and the smallest children rode by day and slept by night... 

Sadly, Catherine met her demise there on Nov. 18, 1845, at the age of 36, about three months after the birth of her youngest child. The grieving widower returned to Knox County with his eldest four sons, and left three behind -- Mary Frances in the care of her 16-year-old sister Elizabeth, and baby James with the family of James Suber. He then left Ohio after enlisting with the U.S. Army in the Mexican War, serving with the 2nd Regiment, Ohio Foot Soldiers. 

Jones went on to marry two more times. His second wife, from whom he later was divorced, was on Nov. 10, 1853 to Jane "Ginny" Woolsley ( ? - ? ), in Fayette County, IL. 

During the Civil War, Jones is said to have served with an Illinois regiment. The identity of the regiment is unknown, and no record has been found for Jones in databases of Civil War soldiers from both armies.

On Feb. 15, 1866, he married for the third time, to Anna Haney (1824- ? ), an immigrant from Prussia. A son was born to the third marriage, Benjamin Obadiah "Ben" Tucker, in about 1867.

Further tragedy decimated the family on March 2, 1870, when Jones was "run over by one or more of three wagons whose 'drivers were drunken Germans racing their teams'," reported the Leader. Jonas "died within nine hours of broken legs, broken ribs and spinal injuries." The month of his death also has been given as August. Unable to support herself, Anna and her three-year-old son went to live in the household of George and Hettie Werts in Otego, Fayette County.

The fate of Anna has been obscured by the misty haze of the past. It's possible that she migrated to Pleasant Valley, Cowley County, KS where an "Anna Tucker" with an 11-year-old son "Obediah" resided in 1880.


~ Daughter Elizabeth (Tucker) Tinker ~

Daughter Elizabeth Tucker (1829-1925) was born on Nov. 22, 1829 in Union Township, Knox County. When she was age 10, her family left Ohio and migrated to Fayette County, IL. There, at the age of 17, on April 23, 1846, she was united in marriage with Missouri native John Jacob Tinker (1817-1881). The ceremony took place in Fayette County, where the newlyweds put down roots. When Elizabeth's mother died in 1845, they took in Elizabeth's two-year-old sister Mary Frances to raise. In 1860, federal census records show that their home was in Hickory Creek, Cumberland Township, Fayette County. The couple produced 10 children, but Elizabeth is believed to have outlived all but four. The known offspring are Benjamin "Wilson" Tinker, George W. Tinker, Laura J. Tinker, William M. Tinker, Jacob M. Tinker, Sina Catherine "Kate" Tinker, Cary May Tinker and Celura "Lou" Stapp. Sadly, John Jacob died in 1881 and was laid to rest in Haley Chapel Cemetery in Bluff City, IL. Elizabeth lived as a widow for her remaining 44 years. She passed into eternity on July 8, 1925 in Fayette County.

Son Benjamin "Wilson" Tinker (1850-1925) was born in about 1850 in Fayette County. He married Ann Akeman ( ? - ? ). Wilson was a house carpenter and is known to have charged $25 to construct entire dwellings. He also served as a justice of the peace. Their children were Grace McMillan and William "Poke" Tinker.

Son George W. Tinker was born in 1852 in Fayette County.

Daughter Laura J. Tinker (1854- ? ) was born in 1854 in Fayette County.

Son William M. Tinker (1857- ? ) was born in about 1857 in Fayette County.

Son Jacob M. Tucker (1859- ? ) was born in about 1859 in Fayette County.

Daughter Sina Catherine "Kate" Tinker (1865- ? ) was born in about 1865.

Daughter Cary May Tinker (1868- ? ) was born in about 1868.

Daughter Celura "Lou" Tinker (1870- ? ) was born in about 1870. She wed John Logan Stapp ( ? - ? ). Their only known daughter was Rachel Stapp, who, in 1975, was a school teacher living in Bluff City, IL.


~ Son Barnett Tucker ~

Son Barnett Tucker (1831-1917) was born on Feb. 9, 1831 in Union Township, Knox County. He too is profiled in the 1881 book compiled by N.N. Hill entitled History of Knox County, Ohio: Its Past and Present. He went to work at age 16 in the cabinet shop of his uncle John W. Moffitt, and did not move with his parents to Illinois. Later, he acquired the Moffitt farm in Union Township. At the age of 22, on Nov. 17 or 27, 1853, he was united in wedlock with his 17-year-old first cousin Margaret Marilla Meredith (1836-1915), daughter of Benjamin and Delilah (Welker) Meredith. The nuptials took place in Buckeye City, Knox County. Federal census records show the family residing in 1880 and 1900 in Union Township. Their two daughters were Hallie E. Tucker and Lura B. Tucker. Margaret endured heart valve problems and, at age 79 died from their effects a week before Christmas in 1915. Barnett outlived her by two years. At the age of 86, he was failing in health, having become senile, stricken with gangrene and vomiting blood. He died on Dec. 30, 1917 in Union Township. Burial followed beside his wife in the Workman Cemetery.

Daughter Hallie E. Tucker (1860-1937) was born on July 1, 1860 in Ohio. In January 1918, when she signed her father's death certificate, she was unmarried and lived in Buckeye City, Knox County. She spent her life as a housekeeper. Suffering from arthritis and hardening of the arteries, she suffered a stroke and died two weeks later at the age of 76 on April 17, 1937 in Union Township. Her remains were placed into eternal repose in Workman Cemetery. Her sister Lura Watson of Danville, OH was the informant for her Ohio death certificate.

Daughter Lura B. Tucker (1864-1951) was born on Oct. 27, 1864 in Ohio. She married Grant Watson ( ? - ? ). In 1937, she dwelled in Danville, Knox County, where she had spent her entire life. As she aged, following the same health pattern as her sister, she was stricken with chronic arthritis and hardening of the arteries. At the age of 86, she was felled by a stroke and three days later died on May 15, 1951. Interment was in Workman Cemetery. Robert Watson signed her death certificate.


~ Son William Tucker ~

Son William Tucker (1834-1916) was born on Dec. 14, 1834. He was 11 years of age when his mother died. He was sent to dwell with his uncle Daniel Welker in Howard Township, OH and remained there until reaching the age of 18. He then was employed by Joseph Martin in cabinet-making and eventually migrated to Paris, IL, where he worked for four or five years. Continuing to feel restless, he relocated again to Vandalia, IL, but moved frequently after that. He is said to have patented several of his inventions, among tem a middling purifier, clothespins and a window stop. On April 26, 1858, in Vandalia, Fayette County, he was united in marriage with Caroline Gerich (1849-1890). Their two children were Grace Covert and William Tucker Jr. Sadly, Caroline passed away on May 19, 1890 a few months shy of her 41st birthday. William outlived his bride by more than a quarter of a century. He died in Vandalia on May 11, 1916. Burial was in South Hill Cemetery in Vandalia. [Find-a-Grave]

Daughter Grace Louise Tucker (1867-1918) was born in 1867 in Vandalia, IL. She was united in marriage with Charles Grant Covert (1863-1953), son of Jacob and Maria Catherine (Gooldy) Covert. Their known children were Alan Tucker Covert and Jeannette Nolan. They made their home in Evansville, Vanderburg County, IN where he was an attorney, newspaper editor and possibly also sheriff. In early life, said the 1908 book Who's Who & Why, Charles "learned the trade of printer and became a compositor on the old Evansville Journal, where he remained several years, until called to take the city editorship of the Evansville Tribune, an evening paper which his father founded many years before. His newspaper work brought him in close touch with local politics, and it was not long until Mr. Covert was taking an active part in shaping the destiny of the Republican party of Vanderburgh County." From 1899 to 1904, he was mayor of Evansville. On Nov. 12-13, 1903, he attended the fifth annual meeting of the Ohio Valley Medical Association and gave an address of welcome to the attendees. He was named postmaster of Evansville in 1906. In 1912, he entered into a law partnership with James Frederick Ensle. He was a director of the Mercantile Trust & Savings Co. and belonged to the Masons, Knights of Pythias, Elks, Red Men, Royal Arcanum, Buffaloes and Foresters. Sadly, Grace died in Evansville at the age of 51 on Oct. 14, 1918. Charles outlived her by 35 years. He passed into eternity on Nov. 11, 1953, with burial beside his wife in Oak Hill Cemetery. Charles is pictured and/or mentioned in several books, among them An Evansville Album: Perspectives on a River City, 1812-1988 by Daniel E. Bigham (Indiana University Press, 1988); The National Cyclopaedia of American Biography (J.T. White, 1943); Murder & Mayhem in Indiana by Keven McQueen; The History of Evansville Blacks by Dallas W. Sprinkles (Mid-America Enterprises, 1973); We Ask Only a Fair Trial: A History of the Black Community of Evansville, Indiana by Darrel E. Bigham (Indiana University Press, 1987); and Old Tales Retold: An Ohio Valley Decameron - by Kenneth P. McCutchan, 1997.

Son William Tucker ( ? - ? ). For two decades, he manufactured and sold mill machinery. In 1919, he was employed by Sinkler Davis Manufacturing Co. as a pattern maker.


~ Son John Tucker ~

Son John Tucker (1837- ? ) was born on Jan. 15, 1837 in Gann, Union Township, Knox County. At the age of three, he migrated with his parents to Vandalia, IL but returned to Ohio after his mother died and made a home in Holmes County. A brief story of his life is told in the 1881 book compiled by N.N. Hill entitled History of Knox County, Ohio: Its Past and Present. He was taken into the residence of his uncle Thomas (?) near the town of Jimtown, OH. Said a family manuscript:

He was small of stature and very active. His uncle used him as a jockey for racing horses. Not liking that, John went to live with his grandfather John Welker in Millwood, OH, where he helped on the farm until 1855. He accompanied his Uncle Obadiah, going west in wagons as far as Keokuk, Iowa. There he left his uncle and took odd jobs, traveling around Iowa. When he'd saved $200 he returned to Millwood to learn the cabinet trade with his brother Barnett. He lived in Gambier, OH for about a year with his wife's family, then returned to Millwood and work as a cabinet maker and undertaker. He also bought a hotel and ran a store.

John was married at the age of 24 to 21-year-old Rose B. Welker (1840-1888), daughter of Paul and Rose Welker of Gambier. The ceremony took place in Knox County on Aug. 25, 1861. They settled in Millwood, Knox County and had one son. Said the History of Knox County, "In 1871 he purchased the hotel stand in which they are now living, and entertain the travelling community. Good accommodations given to travellers, and all who wish to stop by them. The place is known as the Tucker house. His cabinet rooms are in the same building, and prompt attention is given to all work in his line. He has filled the office of justice of the peace two terms, and postmaster of Millwood five years, and also held various township offices."


~ Son Wilson Tucker ~

Son Wilson Tucker (1840-1863) was born on March 11, 1840 in Fayette County, IL. At the age of five, he was rendered motherless upon his mother's death. He grew up and worked in horse shipments in Vandalia during the early years of the Civil War. On March 12, 1860, he married Isabella George ( ? -1863). Tragically, at the age of 22, he caught an incurable fever and died on Jan. 26, 1863. Burial was in Haley Chapel Cemetery in Bluff City/Vandalia. Compounding the heartache, Isabella joined him in death six months later. [Find-a-Grave]


~ Daughter Mary Frances (Tucker) Slother ~

Daughter Mary Frances Tucker (1842- ? ) was born in about 1842 in Fayette County. Her mother died when Mary Frances was only two years old. She was sent to dwell with an aunt and uncle, Elizabeth and John Jacob Tinker in Hickory Creek, Cumberland Township, Fayette County. On July 21, 1865, when Mary Frances was age 23, she married widower Henry Stephen Slother ( ? - ? ). They dwelled in Delphos, OH and had three children: Allie Echroth, Uriah Slother and James Slother. More will be added here when discovered.

Daughter Allie Slother married (?) Echroth and lived in Lincoln, NE.

Son Uriah Slother ( ? - ? ).

Son James Slother ( ? - ? ) is said to have died at the age of five.


~ Son James Tucker ~

Son James Tucker (1845-1926) was born on Oct. 18, 1845 in Fayette County, IL and was but a newborn when his mother died. He then was taken into the home of James Suber, apparently in or near Vandalia, Fayette County. James was age 16 when the Civil War broke out, and he joined an Illinois regiment and served in the Union Army throughout the duration of the conflict. On Nov. 19, 1868 in Fayette County, the 23-year-old James married 19-year-old Mary Fannie Peyton (1849-1917). She was the daughter of John W. and Maria Frances (Miller) Peyton. The Tuckers had four children -- John "Robert" Tucker, Rose M. Hix, Lila "Maude" Miller and Grace Tucker. They resided in Wilberton Township, Fayette County and Ross Township, Edgar County, IL. The couple may have separated, as James resided in 1900 with his married sister Elizabeth Tinker in Hickory Creek, Cumberland Township, Fayette County. Mary Fannie passed away in Martinsville, Clark County, IL on April 8, 1917. James lived for another nine years. He succumbed one day before his 81st birthday on Oct. 17, 1926 in Vandalia.

Son John "Robert" Tucker (1869-1940) was born in October 1869 in Wilberton Township, Fayette County. He is said to have been a telegraph operator and railroad dispatcher, working in Chicago, St. Louis and other cities. He died in 1940.

Daughter Rose M. Tucker (1871-1938) was born on Oct. 17, 1871 in Wilberton Township, Fayette County. On Feb. 22, 1891, she married Henry V. Hix in Clark County, IL. They resided in Martinsville, IL. Rose died on April 26, 1838. She and Henry are believed to be buried in Island Grove Cemetery in Martinsville, IL.

Daughter Lila "Maude" Tucker was born in 1878 in Ross Township, Edgar County, IL. She was wedded to Guy Miller, a merchant of Martinsville, IL. Maude died in 1961 with interment in Ridgelawn Cemetery.

Daughter (1888-1949) was born in 1888 in Ross Township, Edgar County, IL. She never married but devoted her life to teaching in Charleston, IL. She died in 1949.


~ More ~

Many years later, Gertrude (Tucker) Fitzpatrick prepared a Tucker family history about this branch which was forwarded to Gilbert Gaumer and thence to the Moffitt family.

Copyright 2000, 2015-2018 Mark A. Miner

Many thanks to Ken Moffitt for sharing his family's history compilations.