Jasper "Newton" Martin was born on Oct. 1, 1852 in Preston County, WV, the son of James K. and Margaret (Minard) Martin.
The federal census enumerations of 1860 and 1870 show him in his parents' household in Preston County. In 1870, single and age 18, he labored as a farmer.
At the age of 22, on Sept. 18, 1874, Newton was licensed to marry 29-year-old Lucretia Martin (Oct. 16, 1843-1930) in Preston County. She was the daughter of Jacob F. and Mary (Forman) Martin and a native of Valley Point, Preston County. There is no record of any actual marriage, but the pair made a long life together.
Three children were produced by this couple, including Ruth Melissa Spiker, James Wiley Martin and Joseph "Ami" Martin.
The 1880 U.S. Census shows "J.N." Martin and wife Lucretia sharing a home with her parents Jacob F. and Margaret Martin in the Pleasant District of Preston County. Jasper's occupation at that time was as a carpenter.
Then in 1900, still in Preston County, Newton and Lucretia showed up in the census, having been married for 24 years, having borne three children, all living. Daughter Melissa, age 23, and single, was in the household at that time.
They remained in the county's Pleasant District in 1910 and 1920, with Newton continuing to ply his trade as a house carpenter. He added to his income by building coffins.
Newton's mental health declined later in life, and he was diagnosed with "senile dementia." He was admitted to the Hospital for the Insane at Weston, Lewis County, WV, possibly circa July 1925. There, after suffering a stroke, he died at the age of 71 on April 8, 1926. The remains were shipped to Albright, WV for burial. Son Ami was named as executor of the estate, and at the time was living in Monongalia County, WV.
Lucretia spent her final years in Morgantown, Monongalia County, WV. At the age of 86, she died on April 10, 1930, from the effects of "progressive paralysis," thought to have been caused by a cerebral hemorrhage.
~ Daughter Ruth Melissa (Martin) Spiker ~
Daughter Ruth Melissa Martin (1877-1936) was born on April 6, 1877.
Unmarried at the age of 23 in 1900, she dwelled with her parents in Preston County.
On May 12 1907, at the age of about 30, she entered into marriage with 27-year-old Dorsey Jonathan Spiker (Nov. 22, 1879-1939), son of John J. and Lucinda (Spindler) Spiker. The nuptials were performed at Valley Point by H.W. Holden On her marriage license application, Ruth claimed to be age 27. News of their marriage license was printed in the West Virginia Argus.
The known children of this family were Lauren Doyle Spiker, Mildred Spiker, Margaret Allen Flint Barton, John Junior "Dutch" Spiker and Evelyn Grace Rodgers.
Dorsey was a longtime automobile mechanic and operated his own garage.
Ruth was stricken with a cerebral hemorrhage and died at the age of 59, at Bruceton Mills on on July 1, 1936. The remains were lowered into eternal repose in Bruceton Mills Cemetery.
Dorsey outlived his wife by two-and-a-half years and remained in Bruceton Mills. Burdened with heart valve insufficiency and acute kidney failure, the spectre of death cut him away, at the age of 59, on Jan. 12, 1939. Lauren Spiker of Bruceton Mills signed the official West Virginia certificate of death.
Son Lauren Doyle Spiker (1908- ? ) was born on Christmas Day 1908 in Bruceton Mills. He learned the trade of automobile mechanics from his father and the two appear to have worked together in the father's shop in 1930. On Aug. 10, 1935, when he was 26 years of age, Lauren entered into marriage with 21-year-old Edna Fortney (1915-1989). The ceremony was held in Reedsville, Preston County, by the hand of Thomas A. McMellon of the Methodist-Protestant Church. Circa 1935-1939, Lauren made his home in Bruceton Mills. Lauren joined the U.S. Navy during World War II and held the title of motor machinist's mate. The Spikers made their residence in the rural outskirts of Kingwood in the 1960s. Sadly, on Aug. 8, 1966, he suffered a massive heart attack in Kingwood and was pronounced dead on arrival at Preston Memorial Hospital at the age of 57. Burial was in Bruceton Mills Cemetery. Edna survived her spouse by 23 years.
Daughter Mildred Spiker (1910- ? ) was born in about 1910. When she was age 10, in 1920, she lived with her parents in the Grant District of Preston County. Nothing more is known.
Daughter Margaret Marie Spiker (1911-1975) was born on Aug. 24, 1911. She is known to have attended high school through her sophomore year. She first may have been joined in wedlock in 1933 with Robert William Allen ( ? - ? ). If so, this marriage took place in Ohio County, WV. A second marriage was to (?) Flint ( ? - ? ). The Flints' union ended in divorce. As of 1974, at the age of 63, she lived in Columbiana, Columbiana County, OH. In a civil ceremony in1974, she married a third time to 61-year-old widower Robert Buchanan Barton (Aug. 9, 1913-1978), an Arkansas native and the son of Rufus and Mary Lou (Stone) Barton. Their nuptials were held in Wise, Wise County, VA. The Bartons dwelled in Big Stone Gap, Wise County, at 2425 Sixth Avenue. Sadly their union only lasted for about a year. She was diagnosed with leukemia of the lymph nodes. After a subsequent bowel infection and heart failure, death enveloped her at the age of 63 at Lonesome Pine Hospital in Big Stone Gap on April 23, 1975. Interment of the remains was in Powell Valley Memorial Gardens in Norton, VA.
Son John Junior "Dutch" Spiker (1914-1991) was born on Jan. 8, 1914. Evidence hints that in 1938, he may have fathered a son with Eunice Leola ( ? - ? ), daughter of Alva R. and Zora B. Christopher. The baby was named "Wendell Keith Christopher." He went on to be united in matrimony with Erriga Ellen Dunson (Jan. 4, 1922-2002), a native of Weston, WV and the daughter of Rev. William C. and Elva Ola (Hurst) Dunson. Together they produced a trio of daughters -- Ellen Bingham, Ola Ruth Justice and Alma Louise Mugrage. As well, Naomi Swartzentruber of Oakland, MD was considered a "special daughter and friend." They held a membership in Trinity United Methodist Church of Terra Alta, Preston County. Death claimed him at the age of 77 in Melbourne, FL on June 6, 1991. The remains were shipped back to West Virginia to sleep for the ages in Bruceton Mills Cemetery. Erriga survived her spouse by 11 years and at the end was living in Terra Alta. She passed away at Garrett Memorial Hospital in Oakland, MD at the age of 80 on Sept. 17, 2002. Funeral services were jointly conducted by Rev. Ernest Metheny and Steven Nordeck. A reception and open house followed at the Terra Alta residence of her married sister and brother-in-law, Rose and Charles Edward Minor (connection unknown).
Daughter Evelyn Grace Spiker (1916-2005) was born on Dec. 6, 1916 in Bruceton Mills. At the age of 22, on Sept. 1, 1939, she was united in matrimony with 24-year-old Donald Addison Rodgers (1915-1995), also spelled "Rogers," and a native of Elm Grove, WV. Rev. John H. Lambertson officiated at the wedding, held at New Cumberland, WV. At the time, she was living in Hollidays Cove, WV and he in Wellsburg, WV. Their union endured for a remarkable 56 years until cleaved apart by death. Together, they produced a family of three -- Sally Schaad, Joyce Rodgers and Donald K. Rodgers. The family established their residence in Parkersburg, Wood County, WV. Evelyn was active in the Rebecca Circle of St. Andrews United Methodist Church. Sadly, Donald died in Sept. 1995 at age 80. Evelyn survived for another decade. She died in Marietta, OH at the age of 88 on May 6, 2005. The remains were lowered into eternal repose in Evergreen Cemetery North in Parkersburg, WV, with Rev. Maurice A. Miller leading the funeral rites. The Parkersburg News printed an obituary.
~ Son Joseph Ami Martin ~
Son Joseph Ami Martin (1878-1953) was born on Oct. 4 or Nov. 6, 1878 in Preston County, WV.
In young manhood, he moved to neighboring Morgantown, Monongalia County. He is not to be confused with a prominent uncle, Joseph Ami Martin, who married Mary Catherine Snyder, was clerk of the County Court of Preston County before joining the West Virginia Railroad.
At the age of 23, on April 26, 1900, he was united in matrimony with 20-year-old Daisy Curtis Smith (June 18, 1880-1968), daughter of George F. and Sarah Virginia "Jennie" (Wolfe) Smith, also of Monongalia County. Presiding at the nuptials, held in Morgantown, was Rev. I.A. Barns of the Methodist Protestant Church.
Eight known offspring borne of the couple were Hallie O. Martin, Edna Muriel Martin, Ward A. Martin, Wayne Stephen Martin, Boyd Martin, Betty Martin, Maxine Martin and William Neal Martin. Sadly, daughter Hallie is believed to have died on Feb. 5, 1904 as she neared her third birthday.
Over many decades, following in his father's footsteps, Ami earned a living as a house carpenter. The 1910, 1920 and 1930 censuses of Morgantown show him in this occupation. In about 1940, the couple made their home in Smithfield, Fayette County, PA. In 1930, Ami's widowed mother lived in their household.
The family worried and then was plunged into grief when their son William, serving as an aviation cadet in the U.S. Army Air Force during World War II, was killed in action in 1944.
Ami suffered in his last years with hypertension and kidney disease. As his health failed, he was admitted to reside in the Pennington Nursing Home in Elkins, Randolph County, WV. There, he passed away on Nov. 25, 1953, at the age of 76. The remains were returned to Valley Point for burial at Mt. Moriah Cemetery.
Daisy outlived her spouse by 15 years, with her final home at 738 Willey Street. At the age of 88, she died in St. Vincent Pallotti Hospital in Morgantown on Nov. 16, 1968. Betty M. Fletcher, of 1621 Washington Street in East Charleston, WV, was the informant for the death certificate. Her remains were lowered under the sod of Beverly Hills Memorial Gardens in Morgantown.
Daughter Edna Muriel Martin (1902-1968) was born on Sept. 4, 1902 in Morgantown. At the age of 17, in 1920, she earned a living in Morgantown as a sales girl in a notions store. She was joined in wedlock with Ronald Lawrence Knotts (June 21, 1906-1990), son of John Wesley and Cora Alice (Carroll) Knotts. The couple did not reproduce and made their longtime residence in Grafton, Taylor County, WV. The pair belonged to the Church of Good Shepherd Methodist, where he sang in the choir, taught and was Sunday School superintendent, and she to the Grafton Women's Club. Ronald was a 1924 graduate of Grafton High School. He went on to earn his bachelor's degree in 1928 and master's degree in 1939, both from West Virginia University. As an educator, Ronald taught at the Bartlett School in Grafton's Courthouse District in 1929, Simpson Elementary in 1930-1931, Pruntytown Elementary in 1933-1949. Ronald was promoted in 1939 to assistant superintendent of schools in Taylor County and remained in this position until retiring on July 1, 1970. He is known in 1958 to have been appointed to a State Textbook Committee to select new texts for elementary school classes in arithmetic, health and science. As well, he was a longtime secretary for the Taylor County Retired School Teachers and chaired the organization's membership committee comprised of a dozen counties. He also was president of the local Kiwanis Club, Salvation Army Board and Memorial Day Committee where he led an essay contest. They made their home at 209 Thayer Street. For years, Edna suffered with hardening of the arteries. When she suffered a massive heart attack at the age of 66, on Sept. 26, 1968, she was pronounced dead on arrival at Grafton's City Hospital . Her obituary appeared in the Morgantown (WV) Dominion News. She was laid to rest in Beverly Hills Memorial Park in Morgantown.
Ronald married again in 1969 to widow Ada Mae (Beall) Withers (1907-1999). He was a lay leader and official historian for years of the Andrews Methodist Church of Grafton, known worldwide as the "Mother's Day Church," a shrine where the first Mother's Day service was held in 1908, founded by Anna Jarvis. The "Day" was proclaimed for all of West Virginia in 1910 by Gov. William E. Glasscock and then nationally in 1914 by President Woodrow Wilson. In May 1954, in his role as historian, Ronald made remarks at the church "relating the history of how Miss Jarvis' efforts to pay homage to her parent spread throughout the world as a day honoring all mothers," reported the Provo (UT) Daily Herald and other newspapers across the nation. "It was Miss Jarvis who had the original idea of setting aside one day of the year to honor mothers as a means to salve ill feelings which divided Grafton townspeople who had fought on opposing sides in the Civil War." At the holiday's 50th anniversary service in 1958, and then again in 1959, he again made presentations about the tradition's history. In 1981, as one of 14 members of the Mother's Day Shrine Committee, he was quoted in an Associated Press story distributed coast-to-coast saying "The shrine adds to our town and attracts many tourists. We usually have a full house, which is about 350 people. I think it's a wonderful thing." Ronald was quoted in a 1989 Gannett News Service article, saying "It's just the thought of observing the most important person in your life, your mom, who took a chance on her life getting you here." In his role as official shrine historian in 1990, he was involved in a church fundraiser where, for a one-dollar donation, 1,200 Mother's Day cards were sent on request to "anyone in the world." Some of Edna's distant Minerd-Miner cousins of Grafton also were involved in helping to preserve and promote the church over the years, among them Virginia (Fawcett) Mason, of the family of David A. and Sarah Virginia "Jennie" (Freeburn) Fawcett; and James Russell Fawcett of the family of Robert Patterson and Minnie Clyde (Johnson) Fawcett.
Ronald passed away at the age of 84 on Oct. 22, 1990. Interment of the remains was in Woodsdale Memorial Park, Pruntytown.
Son Ward A. Martin (1906-1982) was born on Oct. 3, 1906. He settled in Charles Town, Jefferson County, WV. Ward wed Marion J. (Aug. 7, 1909-1976). She passed away on March 20, 1976. He was enveloped by death at the age of 75 on March 27, 1982. Interment of the remains was in Edge Hill Cemetery in Charles Town.
Son Dr. Wayne Stephen Martin (1908-1990) was born on Sept. 7, 1908 in Morgantown, WV. Circa 1930, he worked as a clerk in a Morgantown clothing store. Wayne was joined in marriage with Frances F. ( ? -2001). Their two daughters were Marilyn Curtis Martin and Carolyn "Noel" Gurnsey. He received his bachelor's degree from West Virginia University and his master of arts from Oregon State University. During World War II, from 1942 to 1947, he served in the U.S. Naval Reserve. His career path led to a position as assistant dean of men at Oregon State, where he earned his doctorate in education. then then became director of student personnel at Fairmont State College in his home state, and then was appointed dean of students at Chapman College in Orange, CA. Wayne in about 1962 relocated to Reno, NV after being named as director of continuing education at the University of Nevada. Upon retirement from Nevada in 1973, he founded Martin Psychological Services which he operated for 17 years until 1990. Wayne held professional memberships in the American Psychological Association, American Society of Clinical Hypnosis and American Society of Educational Psychology. In the community, he was a member of the Nevada Opera Association, University of Nevada at Reno Foundation, Rotary Club of Sparks, Reno lodge of the Masons, the dial Club, American Legion, Navy League and several honorary fraternities. He passed away at the age of 81, in Washoe Medical Center in Reno, on May 20, 1990. He was pictured in his obituary in the Reno Gazette-Journal. Frances lived on for another 11 years and endured the death of her married daughter Carolyn. She died on Dec. 17, 2001.
Son Boyd Martin (1910- ? ) was born on June 10, 1910 in Morgantown, WV. At the age of 19, in 1930, he earned income as a shoe salesman in Morgantown. Boyd migrated to Illinois and thence to Sandusky, OH (1935) and Kenton, OH (1940) where he earned a living as a shoe salesman. From there they moved to Rockford, IL and dwelled in 1950-1968. By 1990, he had relocated to Texas. Research is underway to determine if he wed Alice Marie Hawes (June 19, 1911-1984), a native of Columbia, MO and the daughter of Hilton W. and Louise Hawes. If so, the couple bore a family of four known sons -- Harold Gene Martin, Jerald Wayne Martin, Ronald Lee Martin and James Rilton Martin. Three of the sons were born in Illinois, and son Ronald in Ohio. Boyd and Alice Marie and sons dwelled for many years in Rockford, with Boyd's occupation listed in the 1950 federal census as salesman of hosiery. Alice belonged to the Order of Eastern Star. The family moved in 1977 to Bull Shoals, AR. There, Alice held a membership in the First Baptist Church, Fisherman's Club and Senior Citizens Club. Sadly, Alice passed away in Bull Shoals Community Hospital at the age of 73 on April 21, 1985. An obituary in the Baxter Bulletin of Mountain Home, AR said that she had been a "resident of Bull Shoals since 1977." The widowed Boyd moved to Temple, Bell County, TX and was there in 1987. Evidence suggests that he may have died in Bosque County, TX on New Year's Day 1993 with burial in Willwood Burial Park in Rockford. All of this needs to be confirmed.
Daughter Betty Martin (1913- ? ) was born in 1913 in Morgantown. When she was 17 years of age in 1930, in Morgantown, she was employed in sales with a cleaning and drying business. Betty was employed as a teacher in Morgantown at the age of 23 in 1936. On July 11, 1936, she entered into marriage with 24-year-old Richard Huddleston Fletcher Sr. (Dec. 13, 1911-1990), a native of Prince, WV and the son of Edwin Ruthven and Sarah Elizabeth (Huddleston) Fletcher. Rev. Foster L. Jones, of the Methodist Episcopal Church, led the wedding ceremony held at Pruntytown, Taylor County. One son born to the couple was Richard Huddleston Fletcher Jr. At the time of marriage, Richard Sr. was employed by the Department of Agriculture, having received his bachelor's degree that year from West Virginia University. When the federal census enumeration was made in 1940, the pair was childless and lived at White Sulphur Springs, Greenbrier County, WV, where he worked as a farm supervisor for the agriculture department. The Fletchers moved in the 1940s to Charleston, Kanawha County, WV where they remained into 1990. Richard's occupation in 1950 was as a marketing specialist with the West Virginia Department of Agriculture. Sadly, Richard died in 1990 and was laid to rest in Alderson Cemetery in Greenbrier County, WV.
Daughter Maxine Dale Martin (1916-1993) was born on Aug. 2 or 3, 1916 in Morgantown. She was united in matrimony with Joseph William Stentz (March 16, 1915-1985). The pair put down roots at Lake Lynn, Fayette County, PA and stayed for good. Their two known children were Joseph Stentz Jr. and Adelle Miller. The federal census enumerations show Joseph employed in 1940 as a truck driver at a coal mine and in 1950 as a coal mine superintendent. Sadly, Joseph died in April 1985. Maxine outlived her husband by eight years. She passed away on July 15, 1993.
Son William "Neal" Martin (1919-1944) was born on Dec. 16, 1919 in Morgantown. He had not yet been named as of Jan. 12, 1920 when the federal census-taker visited the household. In adulthood, he stood 5 feet, 6 inches tall and weighed 138 lbs., with blue eyes and brown hair. William was joined in holy wedlock with Opal Sayre (Feb. 27, 1918- ? ), daughter of Fletcher and Blanche (Havner) Sayre. One son born to the couple was William Martin. The 1940 federal census enumeration shows the young family living with Opal's widowed mother in Morgantown. William was employed in 1940 as a carpenter helper with the Works Progress Administration. The WPA was one of the ways President Franklin Delano Roosevelt and the federal government tried to overcome unemployment during the Great Depression. It's widely considered one of the Roosevelt's largest and most ambitious undertakings of his "New Deal" to get the nation back on sound economic footing. Over the years, the WPA hired millions of out-of-work individuals to build public works projects, such as roads, bridges, retaining walls and buildings. William also is known to have worked as a janitor for the Wesley Church on High Street in Morgantown in 1940. That year, when required to register for the military draft, he claimed his address was 375 Maple Avenue. During World War II, on May 13, 1942, William enlisted in the U.S. Army Air Force. He trained as an aviation cadet and was assigned to the 58th Army Air Forces Flying Training Detachment. Tragically, he was killed in a training accident at Great Bend, KS on Aug. 16, 1944, at the age of 24. His remains were laid to honored rest in Beverly Hills Memorial Park in Morgantown. Posthumously, he was bestowed with a citation of honor. The widowed Daisy married again the following year, at the age of 27, to 23-year-old divorcee James Davis (Oct. 2, 1921- ? ), son of John Wesley and Betty (Holley) Davis. Officiating was Rev. L.H. Burns of the Methodist church in Morgantown. She is known in 1959 to have dwelled at 174 Chestnut Street, Morgantown.
~ Son James Wiley Martin ~
Son James Wiley Martin (1881- ? ) was born on April 11, 1881 in Preston County.
He followed his father's occupation of carpentry.
James was twice-wed. The identity of his first wife is not yet known, but it's entirely possible that she was Georgie Gibson ( ? - ? ) of Preston County. If so, they tied the knot at Albright on Sept. 12, 1910, by the hand of Rev. C.J. Price of the Methodist-Episcopal Church.
The pair divorced.
Then at the age of 38, on June 30, 1919, and living in Fairmont, Marion County, WV, James was united in matrimony with 28-year-old divorcee Lizzie (Allen) Polen (May 10, 1891- ? ), a native of St. Marys, WV and the daughter of Phillip and Sarah Jane (Barnhart) Allen. Officiating was justice of the peace C.T. O'Neill. At the time of marriage, she resided in Marietta, Washington County, OH, and had received a divorce from her first spouse in Washington County in May 1919.
The second marriage also ended in divorce.
James spent his final years in Valley Point, Preston County. He earned a living as a carpenter at the woolen mill.
Suffering from heart valve problems, James died on Sept. 14, 1936 at the age of 55. Joseph Martin of Morgantown -- his brother Ami? -- signed the official West Virginia certificate of death. Interment of the remains was at Mt. Moriah Cemetery.
~ Who Was Jasper Newton Martin, Born 1872? ~
Another Jasper Newton Martin (1872- ? ) was born in about 1872, reputedly also a son of James K. and Margaret (Minard) Martin.
The United States Census of June 1900 shows Jasper at age 27 residing with his 27-year-old wife Katie and his parents in the Pleasant District of Preston County. Jasper's occupation was listed as a farmer, as was his father's. At that time, Jasper and Katie had been married for two years, but had no children.
The pair has not yet been found in any other U.S. Census records.
Copyright © 2006, 2023 Mark A. Miner