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William Riley Woodward, born in Keokuk County, Iowa October 24, 1842, was possibly named after Riley Canaday.

He was living with his parents in Keokuk County, Iowa in 1850 and in Otoe County, Nebraska in 1860. He enlisted March 1, 1863 at Falls City, Nebraska in Company L, 2nd Regiment Nebraska Cavalry Volunteers. His pension application documentation said he was stationed about twelve miles north of Sioux City on the Missouri River (Camp 9).



Wm. S. Latta, in an 1898 affidavit, said he "was the assistant surgeon in charge of the 2nd Neb. Cav. the greater part of its period of enlistment... I have forgotten [the claimant] but his statements seem true. Scurvy and dysentery (flux as he calls it) were very prevalent on account of the water's being perfectly horrible; taken from little lagoons and holes in the beds of what in wet seasons had been running streams and when stirred up, was simply an infusion of dead grass mixed with guano of wild fowls and some of it contained sufficient alkali (soda) to raise biscuit with the adddition of acid. This latter was doubtless the cause of the scurvy together with the entire want of succulent vegetables. It was claimed at the [time] we got bacon at Ft. Ranale seven years old. I do not know that to be true but the boys thought it a good joke when they gave it to the Inidian Prisoners for they said it killed them a great deal faster than our Enfield rifles did."

Also filing affidavits were S. W. Smith (living in Rosita, Custer County, Colorado in 1898).
S. W. Simmons (living in Brownville, Nemaha County, Nebraska), added that he was cook for Mess #1, and Woodard was under Dr. Hammer's care. "Woodard came in the tent to see me the reason I recolect him so well is he thought so much of my little boy then 23 months old. we staid at [camp] 13 several days he told me he was no better when we took the march again the last of July."

The Army described William as 5' 10'', hazel eyes, auburn hair, and with fair complexion. His military record only states he developed scurvy, chronic diarrhea, and piles, and was mustered out Dec. 24, 1863.

He lived for a few weeks with his sister Cynthia "Annie" Munhall, and was in his father's household in the 1865 state census - Otoe County.

Dec. 6, 1866 he married Phoebe Jane Prudence (Jennie) Johnson, daughter of Hollis and Polly Humeston Johnson , at Eldora, Hardin County, Iowa. Hollis' affidavit for pension said he "had known William for five years prior to the marriage."

In 1870 Hardin County, Iowa -

same page 492 as father-in-law Hollis Johnson and grandfather-in-law E.B. Humiston and near uncle Samuel Woodward

Woodward, W.R., 27, farmer, born Iowa
Phebe J., 20, Iowa
Mary, 1, Iowa
Charles, 4 months, Iowa

In 1875 E.B. Humeston and Samuel S. Woodward had adjoining land - see the Hardin County Atlas.

William was in Monticello Township, Johnson County, Kansas in 1870 and 1875. He had 80 acres next to Stephen Cook (grandfather) and C.E. Woodward (must be his father) in the 1874 Johnson County atlas.

In 1878 they moved to a homestead in Lowell Township, Kearney County, Nebraska. This homestead is still owned by their descendants, the Schmidt family. (Memories of Lowell).





Tract Book 99, Nebraska land records, page 237, has him filing for the south half of the NW quarter and the north half of the SW quarter of Section 28, 8 North, 14 West [Kearney County location] on August 23, 1878. Final certificate #5432 was issued Nov 17, 1884.

1880 Newark Precinct, Kearney Co, Ne

Has Mary E, Charles H, William H, and Francis M

The 1885 Kearney County census, Lowell Township, has

Wm., 42, "at home"
Jennie, 30, "at school", unemployed seven months last year
Charles, 15
Wm., 13
Frank, 7
and Annie, 4

William had 80 acres, with 3 in meadow and 5 in woodland, valued at $2000. He had $60 in equipment and $870 in livestock. Production value in 1884 was $700. He had 4 horses, 2 milch cows, six other cows. Four calves were dropped, and he sold 2 cows. He produced 365 pounds of butter, had 40 pigs, 19 poultry, and produced 500 dozen eggs. His 50 acres of corn produced 2200 bushel, 10 of oats gave 200 bushel, 19 of wheat gave 280 bushel, and 1/2 acre of potatoes produced 54 bushel.


W.R. Woodward had the title of Quartermaster for the Kearney County GAR encampment in 1893, so the photo could well have been taken in conjuntion with that organization.

In the 1886 Nebraska Gazeteer he is listed as a farmer (post office Lowell) in Kearney County.

J.B. Woodward was a witness to his application for pension in 1891.

In affidavits for her mother's widow pension, Johanna B. Johnson and Nancy Herring stated that they had assisted Phebe in Ruby's birth April 7, 1893.

W.R. Woodward had the title of Quartermaster for the Kearney County GAR encampment in 1893, so the photo could well have been taken in conjuntion with that organization.

1900 Henry - age 46- and Ella M. Hoffman -age 42- of Kenesaw, Adams County, NE affidavit said they had known Phebe for 34 years (1866) and 20 years (1880) respectively, and "for more than two years prior to their marriage". "Ella M. Hoffman is sister of Claimant"

William died in Kearney County of typhus pneumonia January 25, 1899.

The 1900 census for Kearney County, Lowell township, hh # 66, has:
Phoeba, born (too faint) in Wisconsin, with father born New York and mother born in Indiana, owning a 59-acre farm.
Francis, born April 1878 in Kansas, is a farm laborer.
Cinthia A., born September 1880 in Nebraska, is a school teacher.
Rubie F., born April 1893.
Also living with them is farm laborer Johnnie War....., born September 1886 in Nebraska.
This 1913 photo is Emma Trahern (William Riley Woodward's sister), Phoebe, Mary Woodward Keenan (the one who sent clothes to our parents from California), and the front right lady is 'maybe' Jessie Trahern - 'maybe' accompanying her aunt Emma on the trip from Kansas City?

William and Phoebe (Phoeba J., died 1921 in Yuma, Colorado), are buried in the Liberty Cemetery, Kearney County, Nebraska. In the same cemetery are Phoebe's parents Hollis and Polly (Humeston) Johnson.

Children of William and Jennie:

1. Mary Emily Woodward - about 1868
2. Charles H. Woodward - May 1870 (the 1900 census for Newark Township - ED 122, sheet 195A, hh # 104 - has a Charles Woodward, born May 1870 with a N.S. birthplace, parents unknown.
3. William H. Woodward - October 4, 1871 to October 24, 1949, listed in Liberty Cemetery, Kearney County, Nebraska. He is in the 1900 census for Lowell Township, hh # 59, renting a 53-acre farm. His wife Carrie E. was born December 1874 - she and her parents were born in Pennsylvania. Son Robert R. was born October 1893, and daughter Fern E. was born June 1895.



4. Francis "Frank" M. Woodward - April 1878
Frank had moved to Yuma at least by 1907. The Yuma Pioneer reported 'William Mulher sold the farm he bought of Pres Stephens to Frank Woodward for thirty-five hundred dollars, then bought the Storer relinquishments for three thousand dollars.'
Also in 1907, the Pioneer reported 'Frank Woodward took a run to Nebraska last week and it is rumored that he will return with a better half.'
In January 1907 'After purchasing three hundred acres of land, Frank Woodward returned to Minden, Nebraska Monday evening. He will return next week to build and prepare to move onto his land.'
In February 1907 'Frank Woodward is having a new shingle roof put on his building.'
“Frank Woodward has bought him a new husking peg.” November 25, 1910’
It's a small piece of metal or, when money was very scarce, even a big nail, fastened to a leather strap or canvas cloth that slipped onto one's fingers.
Husking pegs were important because they helped farmers that were harvesting corn by hand to strip the husks off the ears of corn. They could grab an ear with one hand and usually with one motion and with the help of the husking peg, peel the husk off with the other.

Frank homesteaded next to Cynthia in Yuma County, Colorado in 1914(west 1/4 of section 6, 3N46W, married Alice Carper (her father Andrew had a cash claim across the road west).
In 1913 Frank and Alice were charter members of the Union Sunday School at Waverly, and Frank was the first clerk of the congregation. The first minister boarded with them, as well as the Carpers. In 1930 they had Grant, 19, and Elizabeth J., 9. Oldest son Marion,21, is next on the census, with wife Edna, 23, and daughter Pauline M., 2.

This is Marion - (photo courtesy of Forrest Allen)
Marion Woodward married neighbor Elva Eyestone March 1, 1929.
Frank and Alice lived in east Fort Morgan during the 1950's, in Julesburg in the 1960's (where their son lived) and are buried in the Yuma Cemetery.


Ruby, Frank and Alice
5. Cynthia Anne Woodward - Dec 5, 1880
6. Ruby F. Woodward - April 7, 1893