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Photos of Mary Jane Brees Watts and her family

The Family of Squire Brees & Ellen Rutan

Ed & Mary Brees Watts Family1903Daughter Elsie was born July 6,1902. People in photo are Edward Watts, Mary Jane Brees Watts, and children (in age order) Merton, Earl, Jesse & Elsie.
Ed Watts Family1914 approxParents in front are Edward & Mary Jane (Brees) Watts. Daughter is Elsie Watts, born in 1902. Sons L-R are Merton (1894), Earl (1895) & Jesse (1896). ID's from Dorothy Watts. Guessing that daughter Elsie is about age 12, and son Earl died in 1918 so it was before that. The picture looks like it had been taken on the edge of the lake (which we call "The Big Lake") in the LaSalle Valley about 15 miles from the now Itasca State Park. My Dad (Howard, son of Merton) grew up in this area on a homestead about a mile from this lake. After the house was abandoned, and 40 yrs. later, my Dad (Howard) and Grandfather Merton made it into a summer cabin at which my siblings and I spent many a happy summers there. It is still being used. The land is still owned by the Watts family."
Earl Watts abt 1917Earl Floyd Watts, son of Ed & Mary Jane Brees Watts. From descendant Vicky Clark: "Earl died in 1918 in France from either the "spanish flu" (The Pandemic Flu of 1917-18) or of pneumonia. He was waiting to be shipped out after his stint during World War I." Flo LaDuke Richards: "- Earl's middle name is Floyd. I had always wondered where my twin brother, Floyd, got his Roman nose from. It was really interesting to notice in Earl's picture at Grandpa and Grandma Watts' home (Jesse & Hildur Watts) that he had the same nose and his middle name was Floyd. We've not seen that nose anywhere else in the family - but it sure helped me remember this guy's name! Incidentally, Floyd was named Floyd because he was a twin to me (Florence). I was named Florence after my dad's mother who died when he was in his 20's."
Brees Siblings

Sept 1919

Children of Squire & Ellen Rutan Brees. Probably taken at the time of Ellen's death in September 1919. Left to Right: Philena "Linnie" Breese-Allen, Inman Brees, Mary Brees-Watts, Luther Daniel Brees, Kitty Alice Brees-Dix, Fredrick Melvin "Fred" Brees. Not pictured: Sylvester "Vet" Brees. He may have taken the photo.
Elsie & Jesse Watts

1922 approx

Children of Ed & Mary Jane Brees Watts. Elsie Watts & Jesse Watts. Guessing on year.
Merton Watts Family

1938 approx

Familes of Ed & Mary Jane's sons Merton & Jesse Watts. ID's by Dorothy Watts.
L-R Adults: Hildur Carlson Watts holding baby David Watts, Sena Julson Watts, Merton Watts, Mary Jane Brees Watts.
L-R boys: Howard Watts, Clifton Watts, Richard Watts.
L-R girls: Dorothy Watts, Ruth Watts, Carol Watts
Jesse not in photo - was possibly taking the picture
Children of Merton & Sena are: Howard, Ruth, Dorothy, Clifton, Richard
Children of Jesse & Hildur are: Carol & Frank
From Flo LaDuke Richards: "- I think the year is pretty close. I don't remember what year Uncle David was born but my mom (Carol) was born in 1934 so she could've been four in this picture. Hildur holding baby David - His real name is Frank David Watts. They always called him David until he went into the service (Air Force, I believe), then he was called by his given name by everyone else. So he's called David by family and Frank by others. Grandpa Jesse probably did take the picture. He was always behind the camera, it seemed. We used to laugh at him because even when he had an Instamatic camera he still held it down by his stomach to take pictures (like the older cameras)! They generally turned out pretty well, but I don't know how!"

Watts Family

1950 approx

Descendants of Edward & Mary Jane (Brees) Watts. Ed died in 1932 and Mary Jane died in 1942.
From Flo LaDuke Richards: "- This has to be later than 1944 since my mom, Carol (born in 1934), would only be 10 if that were the case. She is the 2nd one from the left (back) and has to be probably at least 15 or 16 - making it 1949 or 1950. I'm really going more by her sister, Twila (the middle and tallest of the three little girls in front) who was born in 1942 and would seem to be 7 or 8 here). The ones I THINK I know from my mom's family: (left to right - not accounting for front or back row here): Leland, Carol, Walter, Hildur. Then, as mentioned before, Twila, in the middle of the three little girls in front. My grandpa, Jesse, is to the far right. I can't tell, but if Uncle David (Frank) was there, he'd have to be the one you can't see well, to Jesse's right."
 Jesse Watts Family  
Jesse & (wife) Hildur Watts & Elsie Watts Hall From Flo LaDuke Richards: "This had to be taken in the '70's sometime, probably, since Grandpa died in September of 1981. This photo was taken outside G & G's kitchen window in Solway, MN. I remember that bird feeder! More than that, I remember how much Grandma loved her birds (and flowers). There were a ton of trees around the house."