STORY BY OPAL
OPAL FERN (BURDUE) CARLEY
AT ABOUT AGE 37
(Glasses at about age 38)
DAUGHTER OF EDNA CATHERINE DUNN
Complied by Clark L. Carley
Son of Opal Fern Carley
Revised Dec. 1997
Revised Jan, 1998 In memory of Opal Fern Carley who passed away Dec. 10. 1998
at age of 89 years and 10 months.
The Dunn Family ©
Zachary Taylor Dunn was born
May 24, 1849, at Cordona, Harrison County, Kentucky. All his life he had heart trouble
which caused him to have very severe asthma. Most nights he had to sit on the side of his
bed and smoke a medication before he could lay down. His family kept slaves. Grandaddy Dunn
married at 28 years of age. At that time, his hair was partly gray. He had eight children,
some of them born in Kansas. Not long ago a cousin of the family still lived in their nice
white house in Kentucky. Of course they had a "meadow" for a few cattle. They
farmed 40 acres. When their daughter, Edna Catherine was five years old,
they came by covered wagon to Mapletown in Eastern Kansas. Later, Grandaddy and the older
boys came west and took a claim west of Jetmore in Hodgeman County. They built a sod
house. The rest of the family came by train to Dodge City, where they were met with a
wagon and horses.The sod shanty had a roof of boards covered with sod. When I was a child,
it was used as the kitchen and dining room. Rose moss grew on the roof and any projections
of sod on the walls outside. Inside, the walls were plastered and strips of muslin formed
the ceiling so dirt could not fall into the food. The floor was Kansas dirt with many
hollows and bumps. One of Grandma's rag carpets covered the floor. Rag carpets were made
on a loom. The rags were out of many colors of sturdy cloth and sewn together and wound
into tight balls. They were wound onto shuttles and the loom was laced with cotton warp
(the lengthwise, parallel threads fixed in a loom). A pedal, worked by foot, crisscrossed
the warp and the shuttle (the shuttle was also threaded with what was called the woof,
weft or filling on the shuttle) was pushed through by hand and then the pedal was moved to
across the warp again. This procedure was repeated until the needed yardage was produced.
I have a piece of a coverlet (bedspread) woven in this way with much smaller "warp
and woof", in an intricate pattern which I believe was made by Grandma's mother. It
was large and was divided by my mother, among her children and other family members.
ZACHARY TAYLOR DUNN
SON OF ISSAC FEILDING DUNN OF KY.
Zachary was Grand Father of Opal Fern (Burdue) Carley
(Zachary Taylor Dunn, great-great
grandfather of Clark Lee Carley, grand son of
Catherine (Dunn) Burdue. Zachary was son of Fielding Dunn.)
Later Grandad bought a frame house in Kalvesta, a pioneer town
that could not find a source of sufficient water and most of the people left, selling
their buildings to the lumber needing families for very little. This house contained four
rooms and was added to the sod house to serve as a living room and a bedroom on the first
floor and two bedrooms up a long, steep staircase. Aunt Polly's room was on the west
upstairs. She had many interesting things, a huge feather bed in which one could sink out
of on the farm, as were the huge pillows. Grandma gave gave me a new set of pillows as a
wedding present. The ticking was of the old fashioned striped variety, very strong and
feather proof. As a doorstop, Polly had a little black nurse made from a tall bottle of
sand with a black cotton stocking head. It was dressed in a cap, striped blue and white
dress and a very starched white coverall apron, as were nurses at that time. Polly liked
to wear similar outfits.
EDMA CATHERINE (DUNN) BURDUE
Married Clark Edward Burdue
Edna Catherine Dunn Burdue was born
January 11, 1861. She was the third child of Becky and Taylor Dunn and was
born at Corinth, Kentucky. When she was five years old, she came with her
parents in a covered wagon to the eastern Kansas town of Mapleton, and came later, by
train, to Dodge City. On April 5, 1903, she married Clark Elliot Burdue
at Dodge City. (Uncle Jim Easly and Clark's sister, Effie Burdue were married
with them in a double wedding.) They lived on various farms, the first of which was a
farm west of Dodge, where they lived with an elderly widower. It was there Edna got
typhoid fever and was taken by a spring wagon to Dodge for care. The first of their seven
children was stillborn because of a lengthy delivery. He weighed 11 pounds. His name was
DeVerne. Second was a beautiful little boy named "Little Lee". He fell into a
tub of hot water which was to be used for scrubbing floors. His mother thought he was
locked out of the room. She was alone, except for me, a baby. I doubt if there was a
phone. She kept the two wooden alphabet blocks he had in his hand when he died. We have
pictures of him in his white dress, bloomers, and long curls, and I have a broach
containing his picture. He looked very much like his sister, Nola, did as a child;
their pictures were often confused. Our father made shadow pictures on the china cabinet
doors, which Lee was afraid of. Nola and I liked the bats, gobbling turkey, and
head of a lamb, among the shadow pictures. After the birth of Lee, our mother developed
very bad varicose veins and ulcers, which she had the rest of her life inspire of all the
treatments known then. She was in great pain much of the time, though many people who knew
her did not know it. I was the third child. Opal Fern, born February 7, 1908, at
the Wyatt Ranch in Hodgeman County, Kansas, which was run by my father, Clark. Later we
moved to a ranch owned by Aunt Bertie Burdue Sorem, a widow and sister of my father
and Daisy Fullerton. I frequently hear from her daughter, Violet DeFord.She was greatly
loved by her twelve grandchildren, all of whom were privileged to know her well. She
stayed in a rest home in Jetmore some of the time, where everyone and their visitors knew
her. One day she asked a visitor to take her home, which was done. She died at home alone
night in a ghastly accident . . . it was thought she had been taking a bath, tried to
adjust the gas heater and fell on it, then rolled off near it. She was found by neighbors
who saw her come home but noticed no lights on later in the evening, May 5, 1966. Nola
and I were told not to view her. Before she married, she and Aunt Effie Burdue
worked in Dodge City as seamstresses at a tailor shop for ladies. Those were the days of
tucks, ruffles, and petticoats. Aunt Effie complained that Edna got all the good
jobs while she had to sit on the back steps and "pink" the ruffles with a
pinking iron. The iron had to be pounded to make a notched edge on the material so most
ruffles did not have to be hemmed. Edna had a special talent for sewing. Her said
that as a little girl of five, she would sit in her little chair and sew along with her
mother, and she did quite well.
When I was a child, my cousin, Ada Sorem, did the work so Mother
could make her wedding dress, of pretty blue china silk; I thought it was the prettiest
thing I ever saw. At that time we lived on Ada's mother's ranch in a three room stone
house, where we lived when I started school. Later in our mother's life, she had to have
blood transfusions. She needed RH negative blood, which we think solves the reason for her
losing five of their seven children. The first child is usually allright, but he died
because of a delayed birth, partly due to his size. Evelyn was the only one checked in all
the family that could give her grandmother blood. She had the same problem when her sons
were born, but her doctor knew it and was prepared, so she had no problems. Curtis (he was
about five years old) and I drove Evelyn to Dodge City where her grandmother was at the
time. She gave the blood and got along fine, but Curtis fainted! I did not want to alarm
Granny so when asked what was the matter, I said, "He just fainted!
As I was born so late in the school year, I started to school at
seven years of age. My first teacher was Flora B. Miller, a college graduate. Later she
taught in Dodge City and one of the schools there in Spanish (Mexican) part of town is the
"Flora B. Miller School". . . other schools were named for presidents. She was
sister-in-law of Uncle Ted Miller. She also produced the books used for teaching English
in the grades. I credit her with helping me love school thereafter. (The rest of Opal's
story will be in the Carley and Burdue family history.) The fourth child was a
premature little girl. She, Little Lee, the twins, and my parents are all buried at
Nola (Burdue) Scothorn
Fifth came Nola Gladys Burdue
(Scothorn), born March 5, 1911, in Jetmore at the home of our father's sister, Bertie Burdue
Sorem. Dr. Scott lived nearby. I think I remember that occasion . . . (more in the Burdue
family). I was 3 years old then.
Lastly came the sixth and seventh children . . . twins . . .
Earnest and Earnestine. My parents had no living sons and were told that though they were
premature, the boy would probably live. He died at a hospital in Dodge on the third day
and the tiny girl died the next day, leaving only two girls to grow up out seven children.
There was a great sorrow for my parents. At the time the twins were born, we lived on a
farm ten miles south of Jetmore, owned by Mr. Lawhead, a banker in Dodge City. We stayed
there until the Great Depression, when our parents lived briefly with Uncle Tom Dunn
and the family west of Jetmore, and then they bought a little house in Jetmore where my
parents lived the rest of their days. After the death of our father, Mother Edna
lived there several more years. She spent some time with her daughters, but never wanted
to stay more than three weeks . . . she could always find a reason why she had to go home.
Rebecca Baily (for the doctor) Evans Dunn was born
July 24, 1850, in Crooked Creek, Grant County, Kentucky, She was 25 years old when she
married, and at that time was 5 ft, 3 in. tall and weighed 119 lbs. As she grew older, she
became a little bird-like woman. Because of her husband's health, she had to work very
hard. As a child, I remember she always wore a long, plain dress of black. Her dress-up
dress always had a little lace collar. The only colorful think I ever saw her wear was a
pretty light gray dress with a lavender flowers, made by Edna Catherine. It
had to have a little lace collar, too. She brought her carpet loom with her; it was in the
granary. She wove rag carpets for herself and many of her neighbors, to supplement the
farm earnings. As the farm had poor soil and lots of hills, there was not much profit. The
stable was dug into a reddish bluff where the cows were milked. I remember being inside
the stable. The roof of small branches was covered with hay and held up by large posts. We
enjoyed walking near there to see the cactus in bloom and to pick the pink wild roses. The
Evans family did not keep slaves and Grandma did not care for black people until a widow
and her children moved into a house near her in Jetmore. When Grandma was in a car wreck,
Mrs. Young was the first to come to the back door to help her.
Much later, the sod house was demolished and a new kitchen and
living room were built in its place. Back of the house was a large "root cellar"
where vegetables and home-canned foods were stored. As I remember, the dirt steps were so
worn that one really had a slippery-slide to get in. Since there was no way to refrigerate
foods, butter was lowered into the well in a small bucket attached to a small rope. Milk
was kept in the cellar part of the time, but the cream was in the well.
Being from Kentucky, my grandparents spoke like southerners. Why
the state was considered southern, I don't know, as when I was visiting there in February
one year, there was as much ice as we have in Kansas. Some of them had slaves, so perhaps
that is the reason. Laura and Uncle Henry also were southern in speech, saying "hoss
and poke" as in a "pig in a poke", poke (pal and Lee visited me in Feb. of
1976. Dad slid into a telephone pole when leaving a service station on the way to Ky. From
Bowling Green, Ky. they went on to Louisville, Ky. and back towards Kansas on Interstate
64 to St. Louis, Mo.) Yes, we had one big snow, over a foot.meaning bag or sack, and many
other words that sounded queer to us.
I have pleasant memories of going to what was left of Kalvesta
with Aunt Laura in her buggy drawn by Ardis, a pretty dappled gray mare. It seemed like a
long trip, but I do not think it was far. Only a country store, a garage, a post office,
and two or three houses remained then. There is still a post office there, so far as I
Going to Grandad's was exciting for Nola, as she had to
run a "gauntlet" from the spring wagon or Model-T Ford, to the gate of the
fenced in yard before the old gobbler turkey was there! I never knew him to attack anyone
else, but he was usually on hand when she arrived.
There were lots of speckled guinea hens, too, they were
sometimes in the yard and beautiful to watch. Late in life, my grandparents, with Laura,
Drucella, Tom and Clarence, moved into Jetmore into an eleven room pioneer boarding house.
The large dining room ceiling there was made of narrow boards painted a light tan and
decorated around the edge by a pioneer border whose pattern was developed from the size
and shape of a "flat iron" used for ironing clothes. Nola and I lived
there while in high school. In my senior year, 1924-1925, a classmate joined us. She
worked for room and board nearby, but needed more time to study. Her grade school work was
in German, so understanding written English made school difficult for her. She was
Josephine Stremel and she was related to the Hays Stremels.
When the family came to Dodge, with them were Grandma's mother,
Mrs. Evans, and Drucella Dunn, Grandad's sister, who was considered retarded. We
who knew her thought perhaps her problems were because she never went to school. We doubt
if her brother, Henry Dunn, went to school either, but our grandfather had a fairly
good education. She was called "Druce" by her family, and was so "drawn
over" that her clothing had to be hand made for her by someone used to sewing for
her. In winter she wore long flannel dresses. The one I remember was brown. She was a
thorn in the side of Grandma as there was little she could do and needed lots of care. She
was Grandam's ninth child. Once she helped a slave girl do dishes and when the girl
insisted on keeping her hands in the dishpan, Drucella poured scalding water on her hands.
She had a box of earrings which she loved all her life. She wore bits of broom straws in
her pierced ears so they would not grow closed. Her hands were crippled by erysiphelas, a
skin disease so named because of the inflammation it caused. It is one of the diseases
that have been conquered by medicine.
When the family came west, Grandaddy was also joined by his
brother, Henry, a bachelor, who also staked a claim, as did the oldest of the family,
Laura Jane. The other children were Newton, Perry Kelly, Edna Catherine,
Thomas Atkins, Lena, Clarence, and Lloyd.
Perry Kelly Dunn went to the "kitchen" at the
Kansas State Teachers' College in Emporia, as there were no high schools near. The
"kitchen" was for those who needed high school courses. He lived with the
William Allen White family, as their "house boy" and stayed there through
college. One of his duties was to meet the Whites' daughter with the surrey when she came
home from her finishing school in the East. Later he was principal of a business high
school in Duluth, Minnesota, and taught math at Chicago University during the summer. He
was in the army during the Mexican Border War and taught in a military school at Mexico,
Missouri. He did not like dealing with the sons of rich people especially when it was his
duty to accompany his students on trips. "Uncle Kell" never married and died as
a senior citizen where he lived with a friend's family in Oklahoma. His brothers, Tom and
Clarence, were called and took care of the business arrangements for Kelly's friends.
He had been independent for many years and when he could no
longer take care of himself, his family felt that he did not want to come home and be a
burden, or be that on his relatives!
Over the years, Kelly sent his mother lovely gifts. I do not
think she ever used them. She kept them in a trunk to show to visit.
Newton (Newt) Dunn married Stella and farmed at Rifle,
Colorado. Newton was in the Phillipines during the Spanish American War in 1889. Newton
and Stella had three sons, one of which was Harold Dunn. Uncle Newt told us we did
not know how good bananas were in the Phillipines. He rode up under a tree on a horse and
ate them off the tree.
He also told how a group of American soldiers there in the
Spanish American War captured several native soldiers which they allowed to lay on the
platform to wait for a train. None of the group had ever worn shoes. Some of the Americans
decided to see how tough the soles of their feet were, so they stabbed them with a knife.
The only reaction was that those stabbed raised their heads with broad grins for the
soldiers. Uncle Newt farmed for many years near Rifle, Colorado, west of Denver. When our
mother was elderly and on crutches, Uncle Newt and sons took her with them to put up hay.
They had a wonderful time.
Late in her life and after my parents moved to Jetmore, Mother
had two falls. She broke a hip at one time and the other leg the second time. As a young
woman, she broke a finger when the horse she was returning to the barn jerked away to run
to her stall, catching Mother's fingers in the bridle Laura Jane Dunn, the oldest
of the children, was born June 15, 1877. She came to Kansas with her family in 1886 and
proved-up a claim (homestead) near Ravanna, a town that later disappeared. For some
reason, she was often called Aunt Polly. She called me "Fernie", because of my
middle name. No one else used that name. She really spoiled us! For many years, Nola
and I were her only nieces, but she had a lot of nephews. At one time, she worked in an
institution in Parsons, Kansas. At six months of age, her Aunt Goolie pinned a cameo
"breast pin" on her baby dress. While working in Parsons, she had the broach
made into a ring. She gave it to me a long time ago. It is to be passed to my daughter.
Aunt Goolie was her father's sister. She had poor health and did not have children., I do
not know exactly how her name is spelled. At middle-age, Laura married Pete Sanford, a
widower. A group of people from Jetmore went on a dark night to the ranch west of town
where they were working, to give them a real old-fashioned "charivari". They
surrounded their little house and yelled, danced, and demanded treats until the newlyweds
appeared. This marriage ended in one of the few divorces of the family. When she was 80
years old, a friend took her home with her to visit. They took her camping in the
California mountains where she had a heart attack and died. Her funeral was at the
Presbyterian Church in Jetmore on November 5, 1956 and she was buried in Kidderville
Cemetery, as were most of her relatives. Three brothers preceded her in death. She was a
favorite of her nieces and nephews, who called her "Aunt Polly".
Thomas A. Dunn farmed at this parents' farm until he
volunteered for World War I. He was in Company F, 35th Division, stationed in France. He
was gassed during the battle of the Arigone Forest. His buddy from home was beside him
when the friend was killed. I have the card that was mailed home to say he had
"landed safely overseas". It was written to his sister Edna. He married
Lillian Schechter of Jetmore and they had four children: Jackie, Wayne, Wanda, and Connie
Nola and I were the only girls for a long time among the Dunn
grandchildren until Wanda and Connie arrived. We were fairly well spoiled by the several
aunts and uncles living at home when we were kids! We spent quite a lot of time with them,
as our mother was not well a lot of the time. One time Uncle Clarence was in charge there
and I was quite upset because he didn't comb my long hair! The family was in Jetmore with
our Uncle Lloyd who was ill with typhoid fever. Grandma Dunn's sons all had helped
out with housekeeping as they grew up, so they could cook and sew. I remember Uncle Tom
teaching his wife, Aunt Lilly, to darn socks. Tom and "Lilly" lived on the farm
where Lillian grew up. They had a tall stone house on a creek bank. One Sunday when e were
visiting them, Uncle Tom, Nola, and our father were standing close together on the
bank fishing. Nola had a "bite" and threw the fish out, the line nearly
hitting Tom. His dog dived at Nola and bit her on the leg.
Uncle Lloyd Dunn was the youngest. I do not remember much
about him except that when he visited us he would play the banjo. He was working near
Dodge City when he became ill. He got on his saddle horse and rode home. It turned out
that he had typhoid fever and died at 21 years of age. His mother never got over that. She
was 87 at her death. She was bedfast with heart problems the last three weeks, but sat up
in bed and still darned the socks. Nola and I were very glad to see our mother at
Uncle Lloyd's funeral. She was in a Dodge City hospital and had to go right back. She was
on crutches, as she was a lot of the time. Most of the Dunns, Mrs. Evans, and Uncle
Henry were buried at Kidderville, a rural cemetery west of Jetmore and near their
farm. "Druce" is buried there, too, as well as Edna's first child.
The times when people lived far from the stores peddlers made
their rounds with pins, pan, thread, and many other items. One of them, Solsman Bozictian,
often arranged to spend the night with the Dunns. I have forgotten hissing-song he
did when he met a possible client. People of his nationality always had names ending in
"ian". He liked the boys' teasing. At supper one evening, there was a bottle of
pickled hot peppers on the table. Uncle Kell took some on this plate and passed the bottle
to Soloman who proceeded to eat it. Though his eyes watered and his face became red, he
managed to swallow it, never letting on that it burned badly! He was an Armenian.
Grandma did not know trees and vines did not grow in western
Kansas, so she brought them with her and they grew! They had an orchard and vineyard near
a windmill. Nearby was a large garden with everything they grew in Kentucky. I remember
helping Grandma Dunn pick butterbeans and kneeling on a bumblebee! Ouch!
Aunt Lena Dunn married Ted (Ed) Miller, a neighbor, and
later lived at Durango, Colorado, where he ran a lumber mill and hired the native Indians
to help. Mother, Edna, liked visiting there and going on a ride to a near town on
the narrow gauge railroad which is still in use. When Lee and I were visiting our son Ken
in California in 1960, we were at the home of Aunt Lena's son Bruce at Marysville. Only
his wife and small adopted son were home, but Bruce called me for a long talk. The oldest
Miller son was Clyde. I have a picture of him and I sitting on a chair together when we
were babies. Clyde died long ago. The middle son was Loren, who became an invalid as a
teenager, I think. Mesa Verde (table green) is near Durango and a favorite place to visit.
The horse refused to go through until they got out and fed him through, to his dismay.
There were large tracks that appeared in the snow that looked like those of a barefoot
man. They belonged to a big bear and the horse was afraid.
Clarence V. Dunn came next. He never married and was
embarrassed when he was not taken into the army in World War I, because he was the only
one to take care of his parents and their farm. He was husky and willing and he feared
people would call him "slacker". I doubt if he had that trouble. He was called
"Sandy" after he took after a man with his pitch-fork who was working with him
on a thrashing crew. He was 17 and the older man teased him once too often. He gave
himself his middle name, Vernon, as he was only Clarence V. to begin with. He was an
excellent cook. Once he told his mother he would make the jellyroll for the
last-day-of-school picnic if she wouldn't tell that he made it. I remember that he had
chicken and noodles for all of us when his family came home from being with his sick
brother. He farmed many years and was Deputy Sheriff for a longtime in Hodgeman County. He
taught himself to play the organ, the old fashioned pump organ. He too, was very ill with
typhoid fever. he was one of the few who survived that illness. After the family moved
into Jetmore, he farmed for the Jones family a long time and lived with them near his
When Uncle Tom and Uncle Clarence were teenagers on the farm,
they had several friends on neighboring farms. The gang got into trouble occasionally. One
time, the group decided to visit "a haunted house" that evening. My uncles
decided to scare the wits out of the rest, so they went early and went upstairs there. The
people who had built the house had come to western Kansas for the husband's health. He had
tuberculosis. He was buried in the yard. The wife and daughter returned East, leaving part
of the furnishing, so the boys upstairs armed themselves with the carpet sweeper and
waited. When they heard the other boys starting up the stairs in the dark, they headed the
sweeper down the stairs and gave it a push! The other boys scrambled madly to get out of
the house. Thereafter, the group did not discuss the affair, as no one of them wanted it
known what part they took in the scheme.
As another time, the same gang went for a second time to the
watermelon patch of a neighboring farmer. He was watching for them, but let them get into
the patch before he fired his shotgun. The last boy over the fence got a lot of buckshot
and had to go to a doctor to have them picked out.
At this time, January 1984, Clark is recovering from a second
heart attack. He is anxious to be told he can drive. He very sweetly said, "Have you
ever ridden with Hazel?" It seems she hasn't done too badly so far. His adopted son
Warren was married to Teresa last August. His relatives think that is the best thing that
has happened to Warren Lee.
Step-son Richard Hanna is living in Bowling Green so they are
able to see him often. He is doing well and working at night.
Curtis was recently in Kentucky and Tennessee promoting the Red
Wolf being returned to the wild in the Land Between the Lakes. Clark was very interested
in the project. (He did some interviews at Clark home in Bowling Green, Ky) At this time
Clark's lawyer is proceeding with plans for Clark to retire for health reasons. He will be
54 on Washington's birthday.
The story above was wrote by OPAL FERN (BURDUE)
CARLEY about 1983 or 1984. Entered into the computer of her son, Clark L. Carley in
April of 1995. Presently, OPAL FERN CARLELY is in Skilled Nursing Care, Hadley
Campus in Hays, Kansas. and is expected to return to St. John Nursing Home this May 1 or
May 2, of 1995. At this time, he is 86 years of age.
When she speaks of Grandfather, this is Zachary Taylor Dunn
and Grandmother, this is Rebecca Baily (Evans) Dunn. Kidderville Cemetery
was visited by Clark L. Carley and Maurice Craighead in March of 1995. West of Jetmore,
Hodgeman Co. Kansas. Maurice is the husband of Dolores(Scothorn) is daughter of Nola
(Burdue) Scothorn, sister of Opal Fern (Burdue) Carley Father of
Zachary Taylor Dunn is Fielding Dunn of Harrison Co. Kentucky, which
was located in census report of 1850 in 1980. Wife only name is Jane.
Up date, 1996, May, Opal Fern (Burdue) Carley is
in a nursing home, St. Johns, Rest Home, at Victoria, Ks. Which is 10 miles east of
Hays, Ks. She has had a stroke and unable to talk much. Age 89. Weight as of this date is
She has had a feeding tube for a couple of years. She can not see
anything to speak of now. She has been as heavy as 188 pounds. She has been in the
hospital three time so far this year. 1997 ,. Each time they say she will not make it.
They do not know her constitution. At this update, Oct. 14 1997, Mother is at St. John
Nursing Home in Victoria, Ellis County Kansas. She has been moved to a different room. She
still has her birds which Judy Shuck of the Nursing Home takes care of for us. Adding some
picture with new scanner.Mar. 97.
Nov. 17, 1997, Mother is a Hadley Campus, Hays Medical Center,
Skilled Care and has been there for two week. When she first went, they gave her two days
or so. She is yo-yoing back and forth. Better then worse. Doctor still considers her
terminal ill. He does not under stand what keeps her going and all signs now look fair but
lungs seem to continue to get worse. Her grand son Wayne Kim Carley, who has is a
Baptist Minister has agreed to preach her service. He as a child, spent many hour with
her on West 4th Street. Hays, Ellis County, Kansas. Lost this document in the
computer, reason unknown, so currently scanning and writing it all over again, lost about
25 pages. I also do have all pages in Mother hand writing of her original story and
Dec. Opal Fern Carley was moved back to St. John Nursing Home,
Victoria, Kansas on Dec/ 1997. Conduction remains the same.
OPAL FERN CARLEY
AGE 77 AND ½ YEARS
OPAL FERN CARLEY
50th WEDDING ANNIVERSARY PHOTO
PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH DIRECTORY
Passed away Dec. 10, 1997 at Hays, Ellis Co. Kansas
Buried Dec. 15, 1997 Mt. Allen Cemetery, also Hays.
Would have been 90 Feb, 7,1998
Map of general area, north and west of Jetmore, Kansas
Location of Kidderville and Fairmont Cemeteries.
Zachary taylor Dunn Farm
Tenant farm of Clark E. Burdue
Old school where Opal Fern Burdue Carley would have gone a year or two.
ISAAC FIELDING DUNN AND WIFE JANE COONROD
Father and mother of Zackary Taylor Dunn of Harrison Co. Kentucky
ZACKARY TAYLOR DUNN AND
TOM,. LENA, KELLY, LAURA (Polly) CLARENCE AND NEWTON
No other names on picture
© C. L. Carley
THE EVANS TABLE
The known history of this table starts at Florence , Kentucky,
some time in the mid 1800s. The table was hand made and belonging to Mrs. Evans and her
husband who lived in Florence. Mrs. Evans daughter Rebecca Baily (family doctors name)
Evans married Zackary Taylor Dunn and in the company of Mrs. Evans, moved to Mapleton,
Kansas in 1886. The move was made in a covered wagon with their 5 year old daughter, Edna
Catherine Dunn and her older brothers Newton, Perry, Kelly, and Tom and her sisters Laura,
Mr. Dunn, Newton and Laura (the oldest) took land claims in Hodgeman County, Kansas. Mr.
Dunns claim was located about 17 miles west of Jetmore, Kansas and was said to have
poor "reddish" looking soil and was quite rocky. He and his sons built a sod
house on his claim and the rest of the family followed by train. (with the table) arriving
at Dodge City, Kansas. The family belongings were take from Dodge City to the claim by a
Later the new town of Kalvesta, Kansas died due to a lack of
water and Mr. Dunn was able to buy a two story house which he moved north east of his
claim. He attached the house to the original sod house which became the kitchen. Although
it is not known for sure, it is though that the 4 room house was moved intact on a lumber
Edna C. Dunn married Clark Elliot Burdue on April 5, 1903. They
started there married life working on a widower ranch near Dodge City, Kansas. Clark was a
ranch hand and Edna cleaned and cooked for the rancher. They then farmed the Wyatts Ranch
"on shares" South West of Jetmore, Kansas. Born on the Wyatts ranch was Deverne
(still born) (might be infant buried at Kidderville Cemetery) Lee died about age 2 after
falling into a tube of scalding wash water. Opals middle name was taken from the
hired girl who helped Edna Clark then farmed land belong to Clarks widowed sister,
Bertie Burdue Sorem (formally Saremsom which is Norwegian. South west of Jetmore. Born at
"Aunt Berties farm was a premature girl (still born)a daughter , Nola Gladys
and twins Ernst and Ernestine . Ernest died on the 3rd day of his life and
Ernestine on the 4th day. It is now thought that these children were lost due
to RH factor difficulties. Of Clark and Ednas seven children only Nola and Opal
When Opal was in the 4th grade, the family moved to
"Loghead Place" ten miles south of Jetmore where he worked for the Works Program
Administration . (WPA) When Opal was 13, a young doctor from Larned, Kansas removed her
tonsils. The surgery was performed on her grandmothers sun porch (Rebecca Baily (Evans)
Dunn. Using the table as a operating platform . The anesthetic was chloroform.
Opal went away to Fort Hays State teachers College in the fall of
1925 where she met Leroy Andrew Carley, (Lee" Lee was born and raised on a farm south
of Plainville, Rook County, Kansas. (This is error, he was born in Union Twp.
Pottawatomie County, Kansas, near Louisville, Ks.) (Moved to Plainville area at about one
year of age.) In the fall of 1926, having a "Normal" Training Certificate
from high school and now being old enough
to teach , Opal taught grades 1 through 8 for three years at
Fairview School #61 back in Hodgeman County. She married Leroy Aug. 18, 1927 and he
accepted a teaching position at Yosecemento , Kansas, just west of Hays, Kansas. By
special request " Leroy" soon gave up teaching . He then started a successful
newspaper distributorship for the Kansas City Star in Hays. Opal moved to Hays to join
Leroy in the fall of 1929. They had five children (Clarkie) Clark, Evelyn Lavonne, Kenneth
Duane, Curtis Jay and Lois JoNelle.
Nola married Raleigh Scothorn on March 5, 1929 and at some
point received "Mrs. Evans" "Table" from her grandmother (Rebecca
Baily (Evans) Dunn in setting up housekeeping. Later, Nola gave the table to her Aunt
Laura who still lived in Jetmore. When Laura died, her processions were sold at auction
with a few other items. At this time, the table was warped and the and in general poor
conduction. The hinge screws had splintered the wood and the table leaves had been turned
over and reattached to the table. The table was taken to Hays, Kansas where it was stored
in the basement of the Carley resident at 406 West 4th. Street until disproved
by Clarks wife Hazel.
Clark and Hazed took the table to their residence at
612 Old Morgantown Road, Bowling Green, Kentucky. In 1980, Clark had the table restored
by M and S Refinishing in Bowling Green at a cost of $200.00. After restoration, its
monitory value was estimated at $400.00. Period to restoration the table was thought to be
made of Cherry, a common building material in the mid 1800s. How ever it was discovered to
be made of Walnut which was rarely used at that time. The table is prominently
displayed in Clark and Hazels living room. During each Christmas season, it supports
a open bible.
Up to this point, the short history was prepared by Curtis Jay
Carley in May of 1984 from information supplied by Opal Fern Carley and
"Clarkie" Lee Carley in an effort to inform each new custodian of the history of
"Mrs. Evans Table" It is hoped that each new custodian will add to
the history and will pass the table and history on to a will and informed custodian in the
As an additional note, at the time of this
writing a companion piece sharing the same history as "Mrs. Evans Table" was
in the care of Curtis Jay Carley at 6900 Esther N. E. Albuquerque, New Mexico. This is a
small brown-glazed clay vinegar jar that was also used my "Mrs. Evans" Vinegar
was made in the jug as well as stored in it. The vinegar was made by adding apple cider to
"Vinegar Mother" and letting the mixture set for a period of time. Mrs. Evans
"LITTLE BROWN JUG" is displayed in the Carley kitchen. It is intended that a
copy of this history be passed along with the "LITTLE BROWN JUG" to each new
custodian and that the same stipulations of custodianship applying to "MRS.
EVANS TABLE" To be applied to the vinegar jug.
"This table is to be passed on to the Curtis Jay Carley
family, for one of his children as mentioned in my will. A copy of this is taped to the
bottom of the table and a copy in safty deposit box. And in another file in genealogy at
MEALS ON WHEELS
OPAL FERN (BURDUE) CARLEY