February 14, 2011

Elijah L. & Mary Ann Nelson Coffey Family Update

I have written previously about the family of Elijah and Mary Ann.  Click on the blog title to read.

Harriet "Hattie" Coffey Stewart
Their first child was Harriet "Hattie", born May 15, 1868 in Patterson Twp., Caldwell Co., died Nov. 16, 1954 in Enid, Garfield Co., OK.  Hattie married James Alexander Stewart, born Apr. 24, 1858 in Canada to Scottish parents.  They were married on Dec. 22, 1896 in Harpers Chapel, Patterson, NC.  James died Mar. 3, 1929 in Enid, Garfield Co., OK.  Both are buried at Evergreen Cemetery in Minco, Grady Co., OK.  The couple emigrated to Indian Territory shortly after their marriage and appeared there on the Chickasaw Nation* census of Jun. 2, 1900.  They remained in Grady Co. through the 1920 census but, by 1930 were in Garfield Co.

Caldwell Native Dies in Okla.

News has been received here of the death of Mrs. Hattie Coffey Stewart of Enid, Okla., on November 16.

Mrs. Stewart was born near Patterson in Caldwell county on May 15, 1868.  She was the oldest daughter of Elijah and Mary Ann Nelson Coffey.

She is survived by one daughter, Helen, of the home; two brothers, John W. Coffey of Raleigh, and Dr. George N. Coffey of Wooster, Ohio; and one sister, Miss Mary E. Coffey of Lenoir and Enid, a teacher in the Lenoir High school for many years.
Enid, OK newspaper, 4 March 1929.

James Alexander Stewart
A heart attack yesterday morning proved fatal for James A. Stewart, 70, an elder and prominent worker in the Central Christian church, who died last night at 9 o'clock at his home, 1516 West Broadway.

Surviving him are his widow and a daughter, Mary Helen of the home.  Miss Stewart for several years has been instructor of English at Enid high school.

Eight years ago the Stewarts came here from Minco where they had resided many years.  Mrs. Stewart's sister, Miss Mary Coffey of near Raleigh, N. Car., recently came here to reside and it so happened that their brother, Lee Coffey and family of Minco had come for a week-end and were with Mr. Stewart when he died.

Funeral services will be from the Central Christian church in the morning at 10 o'clock, the pastor, Rev. R.C. Snodgrass officiating.  The body will be taken to Minco where a service will be held in the Presbyterian church and burial made in the Evergreen cemetery by the side of his son who died nine years ago.

The body was prepared for burial by the Henninger-Royer Funeral home.
 James and Hattie at two children, both born in the Chickasaw Nation:  Mary Helen, Sep. 23, 1897, died Sep. 24, 2003 in Edmond, Oklahoma Co., OK; and John Forbes, born Feb. 5, 1900, died Jul. 11, 1920 in OK.  John was a victim of an accidental drowning at age 20, and was buried at Evergreen Cemetery.

Oklahoma newspaper, September 2003

Mary Helen Stewart

Graveside services for Mary Helen Stewart, 106, were held on Sunday, September 28 at 2:30 p.m. at the Evergreen Cemetery in Minco, with Rev. Sam Scott of the Minco First Baptist Church officiating under the direction of the Huber-Reynolds Funeral Home of Minco.

Stewart was born on September 23, 1897 in Indian Territory now known as Minco to James Alex and Hattie (Coffey) Stewart and died on Thursday, September 25, 2003 at the Oklahoma Christian Home in Edmond, the day after her birthday.

She became a member of the First Christian Church in Minco at age 12, and after moving to Enid, became a member of the Central Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) where she was a member for sixty years.  In 1960 she started a church library.  She served as a deaconess two terms and was honored as Board member Emeritus
She received her BA in Education from the Oklahoma College for Women (now USAO) and a Master's degree from Phillips University.  She taught in Mangum and thirty-five years in Enid.  While in Enid, she did graduate work at the University of Colorado and the University of Missouri.  After retiring, she spent three years in Boone, North Carolina, where she worked at Appalachian State University.

She was a member in several local, state and national teacher's organizations: the American Association of University Women; Business and Professional Women;  the Altrurian Study-Social Group; the Westside Garden Club and the Women's Fellowship Guild of Enid.  She volunteered at Bass Hospital.

In 1983 she moved to the Oklahoma Christian Home Cottage Campus and transferred her membership to the Edmond Christian Church.  She moved into the nursing section in December of 1996.

She was preceded in death by her parents, James and Hattie Stewart and by her brother, John Stewart.

She is survived by two first cousins, Elizabeth Wormley of Chickasha and William Coffey of Schenectady, New York.
Elijah and Mary Ann were parents to four additional children.  More on those later.

Grady County originally part of the land given to the Choctaw in exchange for property in the southeastern United States. In 1837, the Chickasaw join them, and in 1855 a treaty separated the two tribes, and the Chickasaw acquired an area that included much of Grady County. The 1898 Curtis Act stripped the Chickasaw Nation of its authority, and communal land was forced into allotment, paving the way for statehood. When Oklahoma acquired statehood in 1907, Grady County was organized and Chickasha was named the county seat. (Wikipedia)

Grateful appreciation to John W. Coffey of Raleigh, NC for help with this research.

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