Margaretta E. Brown (Welker) (1891 - d.)

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Birthplace: Bear Lake, ID, USA
Death: (Date and location unknown)
Occupation: Married James Melvin Welker about 1898 in Idaho.
Managed by: Della Dale Smith-Pistelli
Last Updated:

About Margaretta E. Brown (Welker)

Margaretta E. Brown was born in Chester, Fremont, Idaho, on December 24, 1891, to Thomas J. Brown and his wife, Lavina Henrietta Clifford Brown. In the 1900 U.S. Federal Census for Rigby, Fremont, Idaho, Margaretta, 8 years old, was living with her parents and siblings, listed as follows: James T., 41, Levina H., 40, Hulda, 20, Sarah A., 18, Thomas, 16, Elizabeth, 14, Levina, 12, William, 10, Myrtle, 6, Joseph, 4, and Odis J., 1. James and Levina had been married for 24 years and had 11 children, all of whom were still living. James parents were born in England and Levina's father was from Kentucky and her mother from Ohio. Their first four children were born in Utah, and the remainder in Idaho. It appears they came to Idaho about 1886. James was working as a farmer, and he owned his farm but had a mortgage on the property. By 1910, two more children had been born to them, Agenta, in 1904, and Hyrum S., in 1906.

Margaretta married James Melvin Welker June 29, 1909, in Fremont, Idaho, and they were living in the town of Chester at that time. In the 1910 census, they were living in Fall River, Fremont, Idaho, and James was 29 and Margaretta, 18. Living next door was James' parents and siblings, John Eller Welker, 56, Sarah Ann Thornock Welker, 54, Earnest B., 23, William E. 21, Arthur G., 16, and Hyrum L, 11. Both James and his father John were working as farmers, and they both owned their farm free from a mortgage.

By 1920, James, 39, and Margaretta, 28, had two sons, Warren, 3 years, 3 months old, and Wayne, one year old. They were still living in Fall River in a home t hey owned but now had a mortgage. Living next door was James' widowed mother, Sara A., 63, and her two youngest sons, Earnest, 35, and Lowell, 21. Both James and his mother were working as farmers.


I can find no record of James or Margaretta in the 1930 census, and sadly, James Melvin Welker, passed away on June 27, 1934, at the relatively young age of 54 years old. At the time he was living in Buhl, Twin Falls County, Idaho, as the obituary for him below indicates:

OBITUARY: Welker Rites held at St. Anthony (Special to The Post-Register) -- St. Anthony, July 3, 1934. Funeral services for James Melvin Welker, 54, who died at his farm home near Buhl last week, (27 June 1934) were conducted at the Chester L.D.S. church on Saturday afternoon with burial in the Wilford cemetery under the direction of William Hansen. Mr. Welker was born 14 Jun 1880 at Bloomington, Bear Lake, Idaho, and came to this section with his parents when a youth. He married Margaretta Brown of Chester in 1902 and lived here until eight years ago, when the family moved to a ranch near Buhl. He is survived by his widow, two sons and one daughter all of Buhl.

Six years after the death of Margaretta's husband, James Melvin Welker, she is listed in the 1940 U.S. Census, as a 48-year old widow living in Buhl, Idaho, with a man named James E. McMillin, 50, and her occupation was listed as house keeper. Also living in the home was her daughter, Wanda May, 18, and son, Alfred W., 21, as well as Ray E. McMillin, 36, listed as a nephew. At some point Margaretta and James Edmund McMillin may have been married.

In 1940 James McMillin was working as a gardener on a farm, Wanda was a seamstress in a sewing room, and Alfred had entered the CCC (Civilian Conservation Corps) building roads the previous week. Ray McMillin was working as an edger man at a saw mill. James earned $306 for the 52 weeks he worked at 48 hours per week in 1939, Wanda earned $45 for the 4 weeks she worked at 35 hours per week, Alfred earned $102 for the 17 weeks he worked, and Ray E. McMillin earned $785 for the 43 weeks he worked that year.

I'm not certain of Margaretta's whereabouts after 1940, but I did find a death record for her daughter, Wanda Mae Welker Virgin, who was born July 25, 1921, in Idaho, and passed away April 15, 1973, in Los Angeles County, California. Here is an obituary for her found on Find A Grave.com.

Beloved wife of Merle. Mother to Tammy and John. Beloved Grandmother of Dawn, Nikki, Jaime, and Stacey. Great Grandmother of Kirsten, Ian, Logan, Erin, Aden, Hannah, Carson, Morgan, and Ethan. Passed away a month after an accident in the Azusa Mountains caused by a person on drugs. Only the oldest, Dawn, has the honor of remembering this beautiful woman out of all the grandchildren.

Wanda was buried in the Rose Hills Memorial Park Cemetery in Whittier, Los Angeles County, California. Ironically, I lived about 5 miles from that cemetery in 1983, but that was 10 years after her death. Wanda's husband, Merle Harold Virgin, was born November 19, 1919, in Salem, Madison County, Idaho, and passed away March 23, 1999, in Pomona, Los Angeles County, California. He was a PFC in the U.S. Army, and as a result was buried in the Riverside National Cemetery, Riverside, California, Plot: 48, 0, 5347.

Margaretta's second husband, James Edmond McMillin, born July 4, 1889, in Nebraska, passed away September 7, 1968, in Baldwin Park, Los Angeles County, California, and is also buried in the Rose Hills Memorial Park Cemetery where Margaretta's daughter, Wanda, was buried. His plot is: Gate 1, Garden of Prayer, Curb 5010, Lot 6209, Space 4. 13 rows into lawn, 18 spaces right.

When James Edmond McMillin completed his U.S. World War I Draft Registration Card on June 15, 1917, he described himself as being of medium height and build with hazel eyes and black hair. He was living in Heppneer, Oregon, at the time, and was doing Ranch work for Frank Monahan. He was 27 years old and single at the time. Previously, in 1910, James had been living in Washington, Laclede County, Missouri, with his parents, Thomas A., 64, and Sarah J., 59. They had been married for 42 years and had 8 children, 6 of whom were still living. Thomas was working as a farmer and James was working as a farm laborer on the home farm. They owned their own home, but had a mortgage on the property.

A decade earlier in 1900, the McMillin family was living in Douglas, Adams, Iowa, and were listed as: Thomas, 54, Sarah J., 48, Thomas A., Jr., 20, Iva J., 18, Clara M., 13, and James E., 9. Thomas was working then as a farmer and his son, Thomas, Jr., was working as a farm laborer on the family farm. In this census record, Thomas was renting the family farm.

By 1930, James, 40, was living in Perry, Stark, Ohio, with his wife, Myrtle, 23, and they were renting their home for $20 per month. They had been married for 4 years, and it appears Myrtle may have been married before, because she was originally married at age 17. James was working as an oil and gas salesman. What caused James to come to Buhl, Twin Falls, Idaho, is unknown, but it appears on the 1940 census that he was divorced.

When James Edmund McMillin completed his U.S. World War II Draft Registration card, he was living at Route #3, Buhl, Twin Falls, Idaho. He was 52 years old, and had been born in Page, Nebraska. He listed his father, Thomas A. McMillin, 634 North 7th Street, Payette, Idaho, as the name and address of the person who will always know your address.

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Margaretta E. Brown Welker's Timeline

1891
December 1891
Bear Lake, ID, USA
1909
June 29, 1909
Age 17
1911
January 26, 1911
Age 19
Chester, ID, USA
1915
May 6, 1915
Age 23
1916
October 12, 1916
Age 24
Idaho, USA
1918
1918
Age 26
1921
July 23, 1921
Age 29
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