November 28, 2010

Wesley W. & Laura Josephine Howe Coffey

I have previously written about one of the sons of this couple.  Readers can view that blog here.


Wesley W. Coffey was born on Dec. 13, 1837 in Clay Twp., Owen Co., IN and died there before 1910.  He enlisted in Co. H, 14th Indiana Volunteers in Clay Co. in 1861 and was on the county tax rolls in 1866.

The following was found in a Clay county source:*
"Wesley Coffey, attorney at law, was born December 13, 1843 [sic] in Clay Township, Owen County.  His parents, Albert (Gooderight) [sic] [Goodnight] Coffey - the former a native of North Carolina and the latter of Kentucky - emigrated to Indiana from North Carolina about 1828.  Four years later they came to Owen County, and located in Clay Township, on a farm where the mother now resides.  The father died in October of 1838.

Wesley is the elder [sic] of two children, and lived at home until 1861, when he enlisted in Company H, Fourteenth Indiana Volunteers, under Capt. J. H. Martin, and was in active service for two years.  Then, on account of ill-health, he was put on detached service, sent to Frederick, Md., and remained there until the close of the war.  He participated in the following battles:  Rich Mountain, Cheat Mountain and battle of Winchester.

At the close of the war, he returned home to Owen County, remained one year, after which he purchased a farm in Clay Township, where he remained two years.  He then sold and went into the grocery business at Spencer with W. R. Stogsdil.  About 1875, he sold his interest and went into the insurance business, and the study of the bar in Spencer.

He was married in April, 1865, to Laura J. Howe, daughter of Amon P. and Harriet Howe, old settlers in Owen County.  Mr. Coffey is a member of the A. F. & A. M., of the K. of P., of the Royal Arcanum, and the Grand Army of the Republic, and was for four years Justice of the Peace of Owen County.  He is a public spirited citizen, and highly estemed [sic] by those [who] know him."
He married Laura Josephine Howe in Owen Co. on Apr. 13, 1865 and appeared there in the 1880 and 1900 census of Spencer in Washington Twp.  Laura was a daughter of Amon Price and Harriet C. Thatcher Howe and was born in July, 1842.  She lived with her parents in Washington Twp. until her marriage to Wesley.  She can be found in the 1910 Owen Co. and, the 1920 census of Indianapolis, Marion Co., IN.  By 1930 she was living with two of her children in San Gabriel, Los Angeles Co., CA.  The city 1939 and 1941 city directories of Los Angeles list Laura, Hallie and Albert at 709 E. Hellman Ave. in Wilmar City.

There were three children born to Wesley and Laura.  The first was Byron Howe, born Jan. 29, 1866 in Owen Co., died July 4, 1945 in Los Angeles.  Click on the above link to read more about him.

The second child was a daughter, Hallie H., born Jan. 14, 1874 in Owen Co.  Hallie died unmarried on Dec. 13, 1969 in Los Angeles.

Their last child was Albert Price, born May 29, 1876 in Owen Co. and was a musician.  He died in Los Angeles on May 30, 1946 at the age of 70.  I have found no record of him ever having taken a wife.  He lived most of his life with his mother or with Hallie, with whom he shared the house on E. Hellman Ave., at least until 1941.


*Charles Blanchard, Editor, Counties of Clay and Owen, Indiana: Historical and Biographical. Illustrated. (Chicago, IL: F. A. Battey & Co., Publishers, 1884), Page 832.  The birth year given in the bio is incorrect.  He was also about a year younger than his sister Julia Ann.

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