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Mary (Younkin) Griffiths
(1837-1922)

 

Mary (Younkin) Griffiths was born on Jan. 18, 1837 in Somerset County, PA, the daughter of Frederick F. and Marie "Mary" (Sanner) Younkin. She migrated to Indiana with her parents and siblings. Later she and her husband were pioneer settlers of Murphysboro in southern Illinois.

At the age of 20, in about 1858, Mary married 20-year-old Cyrus Sylvester Griffiths (Oct. 1838-1922), son of John Jackson and Henrietta "Harriet" (Will) Griffith.

After becoming "Mary Griffiths, [she] went to Murphysboro, Jackson County, Illinois, not far from Carbondale, and died there some years ago," wrote her nephew, Frederick Elijah Younkin, in 1932.

The couple produced three children -- among John Griffith, Edgar F. Griffith and Ida Boucher.

Wrote nephew F.E. Younkin: "Stanley Scott, the son of Edgar Scott, the brother of my wife, who lives in Carbondale, Illinois, went to see Aunt Mary Griffiths at my instance some years ago, and found that she had just died at Murphysboro, and he talked with some of the sons and daughters, and other relatives of Aunt Mary. Aunt Mary sent me a picture of herself and Mr. Griffiths, and I saw her once when I was eight or ten years old at our old home in Somerset County [circa 1884], where my father lived and died, and she was on a visit from Illinois to Pennsylvania." 

Mary and her brother Michael contested their father's will, claiming that in his weakened state he was unduly pressured by his wife (Mary's step-mother) to give special benefit to the children from the second marriage.. She filed a lawsuit in the Orphans Court of Somerset County, placing into evidence a document dated Oct. 2, 1872 purporting to be an earlier will. In response, her half brother William "Henry" Younkin asked the court to dismiss the claim as Mary was an out-of-state resident.

When the federal census enumeration was made in 1880, the Griffiths made their residence on a farm in Somerset Township, Jackson County, IL.

Circa January 1896, while residing in Murphysboro, they sold their inheritance right in her late father's old home place farm to her half-brother-in-law, Simon Liston. He paid them a total of $325 to transfer their share to him, with the quit-claim deed filed in Somerset County court, under the name "Mary A. Griffith and Cyrus S. Griffith her husband...."

The federal census of 1900 shows Mary and Cyrus living on 9th Street in Murphysboro, providing a home for their widowed daughter Ida Buncher and her three children, with Cyrus' occupation listed as "Landlord" and 11 tenants in the household. In 1910, still residing on North Ninth, the 73-year-old Cyrus continued his work as a farmer, with just two lodgers under their roof.

Cyrus retired during the decade of the 1910s and in 1920 their residence was on Hortense Street in Murphysboro, and one boarder living there.

Mary and Cyrus both passed into eternity in Murphysboro in 1922 -- he on Jan. 12, 1922 and she on July 31, 1922. They were lowered into eternal repose in the local Zion Lutheran Church Cemetery. [Find-a-Grave]

Daughter Ida May Griffith (1862-1941) was born on Jan. 16, 1862 in or near Murphysboro. She married Maryland native Albert Madison Bouscher (or "Boucher") (1854-1881), son of Samuel Wright and Catherine A. (Enos) Bouscher. The groom was nine years older than the bride. In the short time that they were married, they produced three children -- George Madison Boucher, Albert Boucher and Ella Busch. The United States Census of 1880 shows this family dwelling on a farm in Somerset Township, Jackson County, IL. They were members of the Zion Lutheran Church. Sadly, Albert passed away at the age of 26 on April 1, 1881 in Jackson County. The cause of his death is not known. Burial was in Holliday Farm Cemetery in Murphysboro. At the age of 38, in 1900, Ida and her children lived with her parents in Murphysboro. After an illness of 11 months' duration, Ida died on April 5, 1941 at the home of her daughter Ella Busch in Murphysboro. Rev. E.C. Phillips officiated at the funeral followed by interment in Tower Grove Cemetery. An obituary in the Murphysboro Daily Independent reported that she was "well known to both young and old members of this community" and that she was survived by five grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.

  • Grandson George Madison Boucher (1879-1933) was born in May 1879 in Somerset Township, IL. He was only two years of age when his father died. On Sept. 17, 1899, at Chester, IL, he was united in holy wedlock with Harriet Ursula "Hattie" Davis ( ? -1947) of DeSoto, IL. In reporting on their wedding, the Carbondale (IL) Free Press said "Both the young people are prominent in their respective communities." They produced two children -- Albert D. Boucher and Ursula Law. George earned a living in the oil and gas business for many years and later in life also engaged in produce. "He was doing very well in that business until ill health overtook him," reported the Murphysboro Daily Independent. He also was active with the local Elks Club. "He was a well liked man having a kind word and a smile for everyone," said the Independent. "He had many friends." Stricken with cirrhosis of the liver, he suffered for three months and died on Nov. 22, 1933 in Murphysboro. After a funeral preached by Rev.William J. Boatman, he was buried at Pleasant Grove Memorial Park. As a widow, Harriet relocated to southern California and spent her final years in Los Angeles. She died there on Sept. 25, 1947, with her remains returned to Illinois for interment. Circa 1949, Ursula is believed to have been married to Porter Law and to have resided in Macon, GA, where she was "an instructor on instrument boards at the mammoth Macon air field, a Govenment project," said the Carbondale (IL) Southern Illinoisan.
  • Grandson Albert Boucher (1880-1943) was born on July 23, 1880 in Jackson County, IL. At the age of 19, unmarried, he lived with his parents and earned a living as teamster. In 1914, in Wickliffe, KY, he was wedded to Mamie Bradley (1890-1971) of Jackson County, daughter of Durrit J. and Dalthula Alpharetta (Bouscher) Bradley. Their three offspring were Ella Wilson, Eugene "Gene" Boucher and William Boucher. They were members of the Camp Creek Baptist Church. At the death of his mother in 1941, Albert was named in the Murphysboro Daily Independent obituary and dwelled at 316 North 8th Street. Albert entered eternity on July 12, 1943 in Murphysboro less than two weeks before his 63rd birthday. Burial was in Tower Grove Cemetery. Mamie survived as his widow for another 28 years. She supported herself by working for the Brown Shoe Company of Murphysboro. At Easter 1951, she traveled with her sister in law Mamie Boucher to St. Louis to visit with her son Gene and family. She died on Nov. 7, 1971. The funeral was officiated by Rev. H.D. Bedinger.
  • Granddaughter Ella Boucher (1889-1955) was born in April 1889 in Illinois. She was wedded to Leo Busch (1886-1956). In 1941, the Busches lived at 415 North Street in Murphysboro. Ella died in 1955, with burial in Tower Grove Cemetery. Leo followed her to the grave a year later in 1956.

Son John J. Griffith (1865-1922) was born on Sept. 19, 1865 in Murphysboro. On Nov. 6, 1887, he married Florence Elizabeth Kimmel (1865-1936), daughter of Daniel Webster and Mary Ann (Bouscher) Kimmel. Sadly, John died on Sept. 3, 1922, in Murphysboro, at the age of 57. Burial was in Zion Lutheran Church Cemetery in Murphysboro. Florence survived for 14 years. Death swept her away on March 27, 1936, in Jackson County. [Find-a-Grave]

Son Edgar F. "Ed" Griffith (1868-1944) was born in about 1868 in Illinois. He is believed to have married Florence Davis (March 1870-1939), daugher of William M. and Rachel E. (Wallace) Davis. They resided on North 5th Street in Murphysboro circa 1941. Sadly, Florence succumbed in 1939. Five years later, Ed died in 1944. They rest side by side in Tower Grove Cemetery in Murphysboro.

 

Copyright © 2013, 2016 Mark A. Miner
Research for this page graciously shared by the late Olive (Rowan) Duff and the late Donna (Younkin) Logan.