BOBBITT FAMILY HISTORY

 

Early History of the Bobbitts

 

Until the rather unsavory incident involving John and Lorena Bobbitt hit the news several years ago, the only Bobbitt I had ever heard of was my mother.  As I began to research my genealogy through mother’s lines, I was amazed to discover that there were, and are, Bobbitts all over the country and the world.  As early as 1850, there were 1,009 Bobbitts listed in the census, and those were just the ones who had been counted! 

 

There has been much research done on the Bobbitt family, and it can be confusing because of the numerous spellings of the name over time. 

 

Edward Bobet was the first man to live in America with this surname.  He spelled his name as Bobet.  The earliest use of the name is found in the literature of France where it was spelled as bobit.  In the records, history and literature of the United States, the name is spelled in many different forms: Bobit, Bobet, Babbitt, Bobbitt, Bobbet, Bobot, Bobbett, Bobbette, Bobbot, and Boblett.

 

Sometimes, different spellings were used in the same document.  The land grant given to our ancestor, William Bobbitt in 1673 spelled his name as Bobbett.  The land survey for his son, in 1706 in Virginia used the spelling Bobbett as well as Bobbitt.

 

In a book, “The Babbitt Family History, 1643 – 1900”, professional genealogist, Dr. William Bradford Browne, comments on the origin of the name:

 

“Certain family traditions say the Bobbet name is of French origin, but there is no doubt that it is the old English name of Bobbett, this being the form used by the first Edward Bobbet who came to Massachusetts.  It is a common name of the present time and later immigrants to this country who settled in Virginia and North Carolina have kept the name in its original form, and it is not an un common name throughout the south.  The same person will frequently use several varieties of spelling the name in the same document.  ….. The English surname Bobbett means “Bob” son of Robert, the syllable “ett” being a diminutive.  Bobbett was a common family name in Suffolk and Devonshire in the middle ages in England.:

 

There is no proof as yet, but it is commonly thought that our ancestor, William Bobbitt, was a nephew or cousin of the Edward Bobet who settled in Massachusetts.  All indications are that both were from the Glamorganshire area of Wales.  With the 22 year difference in age, it is unlikely that they were brothers, but probably from the same family in Wales.  Likely the stories Edward Bobet sent back to his home in Wales became the inspiration for William Bobbitt to go to the colonies to join up with his relative.  Unfortunately, many of the immigrants from the British Isles thought the distance from the colony of Massachusetts to the colony of Virginia was a one day journey by horse, and that the path was well marked and traveled. 

 

So in 1673, William Bobbitt and his wife, Joanna Sturdivant Bobbitt, sailed from Cardiff, Wales to Virginia where William had been given a grant of 96 acres of land.  He never saw Edward Bobet before Edward died in 1675.   The Indian uprising known as King Philip’s War was raging in Massachusetts at that time, and Edward and Sarah Bobet lived far from the garrison stockade.

 

“On June 25, 1675, Edward and his family were warned of the commencement of hostilities.  They took refuge in the fort at Taunton, leaving behind the home which had been the fruit of much labor in the wilderness.  We must depend on tradition for an account of Edward Bobet’s last hours.  This tradition has been faithfully handed down from generation to generation and seems to be confirmed by the place of his burial.  According to this tradition, Edward Bobet, returned to his home to secure some necessary articles.  He was accompanied by his dog, in the thought that the dog would give him a warning of any prowling indians.  He obtained the articles and was on his way back to the fort when he discovered that he was being pursued by indians.  He climbed a tree and was effectually hidden, but his faithful dog disclosed his presence in the tree, and his life was forfeit of his hazardous adventure.  His grave is in a private yard, near Berkley Bridge, and is thought to be the spot where he was killed. 

 

“When Edward failed to return to the fort, the searching party buried his mutilated body where it was found, and later a headstone was placed there.  It read, “Edward Bobbett, Kld June 1675”.  The headstone is now in the Historical hall of Taunton, Massachusetts, having been taken away from the grave afterwards and placed on a stone wall nearby. 

 

 

William Bobbitt, Sr.

 

The Government of Great Britain offered all persons who would go to the Virginia colony a land grant of fifty acres per person.  The land had to be lived on and cultivated within three years of the land grant.  The land William Bobbitt received in 1673 is in present day Hopewell, Virginia.  He and his family lived on the land until his death in 1703.

 

There are no indications that William had any political aspirations or problems either in Wales or in the Virginia colony.  He apparently did not come to the colony for religious reasons as the records show that he was a member of the established church of England and remained so until his death.  It seems that William came to the colonies for the sole purpose of economic opportunity for himself and his family.

 

William couldn’t have been more than 20 when he arrived in Virginia.  He and his wife, Joanna Sturdivant, were probably married in Wales; they had to have been married before making the voyage in order to receive their land grant as husband and wife.  The Sturdivant family came to Virginia at the same time as William and Joanna.  John Sturdivant received a land grant on October 28, 1673, that adjoined the land that William received on October 27.   It is likely that John and Joanna were brother and sister.

 

William and Joanna were the youngest of those who applied for land grants in October 1673, and they had the least amount of land of all who were granted land in that month.  Not far from where William and Joanna settled on their 96 acres, was the small plantation of Thomas Jefferson, the great grandfather of President Thomas Jefferson.  

 

William lived on his 96 acres with his family until his death in 1703.  William and Joanna had three children, William Jr., John, and James.

 

 

William Bobbitt Jr.

 

William Jr. was the oldest son; he married Mary Green whose sister, Sarah, married his brother, John.  William inherited the 96 acres from his father and was a tobacco farmer, a law abiding citizen, and a member of the established Church of England.  He later sold the original land grant and purchased other and additional land nearby.

 

William Jr. and Mary Green Bobbitt had at least three sons, William III, Lewis, and James. 

 

 

James Bobbitt

 

James Bobbitt was born and reared on the plantation of William Jr.   He was trained to raise tobacco and run a gristmill.  James didn’t marry until he was about 27 years old, in 1734.   He married Elizabeth Dalton Bennett, a young widow with a son named Richard Bennett.  Elizabeth was the daughter of Timothy and Elizabeth Dalton; they owned land adjoining the plantation of James on the Pigg River in Pittsylvania County, Virginia. 

 

James Bobbitt didn’t agree with the law on tithables (taxes) that required that on each 10th of June every master or plantation overseer had to provide a list of all “male persons of the age of 16 and upwards, not being free, and all negroes, mulattoes, and indian women, of the age of 16 and upwards, not being free….”  living in or belonging to his family or plantation.

 

If any person concealed such a tithable, he was fined 1000 pounds of tobacco.  It took James several years and several thousand pounds of tobacco to learn that he eventually had to comply with the law. 

 

James became ill in March of 1761 and on March 13th he wrote his will.  It was written in his own handwriting and acknowledged by his own signature, indicating that he was well educated.  James died on August 20, 1761.

 

Will of James Bobbitt (unedited):

 

IN THE NAME OF GOD, AMEN: I, JAMES BOBBITT, of the Parish of Antrim, in the county of Halifax, being sick and weak in body, but of sound sense and memory, thanks be to almighty God, for the same, and calling to mind the uncertainty of this life, and that it is appointed for all men, once to die, I do, constitute, ordain, and appraise this my last will and testament.

 

FIRST:  I do bequeath my soul to God that gave it, and my body to be buried in a christian manor at the discretion of my executors, nothing doubting, but at the general resurection, to receive full pardon and forgiveness of all my sins, and as touching such worldly estate, where with it has pleased the Almighty God to bless me with in this life, I have in the following manner.  Namely:

 

ITEM:  I give and bequeath to james Dillard, all that tract of land on the south side of Pigg River where on I now live, as james Dillard is paying to the co-executors of this said will, one hundred pounds made payable in one year from the proving of this said will, the above being a formal contract and agreement between the said bond and Dillard, and upon the non-performance of the said Dillard, my desire is for the same therefor to be sold by my executors and the money arising on the said sale to be applied towards paying my lawfull debts, discharged, to be equally divided with my personal estate amongst my heirs hereafter mentioned.

 

ITEM:  I give to my son JOHN, law’s RICHARD BENNIT, the remaining part of the above mentioned tract of land on the north side of Pigg River, according to the river courses of the patent, to him and his heirs and assigns forever, also a tract of land surveyed by John Adams adjoining the line of the above said land to the said RICHARD BENNIT also to him and his heirs forever in consideration whereof the said RICHARD BENNIT is to pay JAMES BOBBITT eleven pounds at the time the said BOBBITT shall come of age, provided he die before he shall have issue or come to age, the money to be paid to RANDALL BOBBIT.

 

ITEM:  I give to my son WILLIAM OBBITT that part of the tract of land I had of Timothy Dalton lying on the south side of Pigg River to him and his heirs and assigns forever, he paying likewiise to the said JAMES BOBBITT JUNIOR, the sum of seven pounds in like manor as the said RICHARD BENNIT is also five pounds to the said RANDALL BOBBIT in like manor aforesaid.

 

ITEM:  I give to my son JOHN BOBBITT the remainder of the tract of land I had of this said Dalton on the north side of Pigg River, he paying the sum of eight pounds in mannor above as to the above said RANDALL BOBBIT.  In case the said RANDALL BOBBIT die without issue or before he comes to age, the money is to be paid to JAMES BOBBITT JUNIOR in manor and form aforesaid.

 

ITEM:  I lend to my loving wife ELIZABETH my darling widow, my negro, Joe, with all the rest of my estate equally to be divided between my loving wife, ELIZABETH BOBBIT, DINAH HINNINGS, ANN HINSON, MARY BOBBITT, LIVISA BOBBIT, JAMES BOBBIT, AND RANDALL BOBBITT.

 

ITEM:  I DO CONSTITUTE AND APPOINT MY LOVING WIFE Elizabeth Bobbit, EXECUTRIX AND MY LOVING FRIENDS Robert Baber, and hugh Innis, executors to this my last will and testament.  I rebuke, annull all other will or wills by me before made in witness hereof, I have set my hand and afix my seal this thirteenth day of March 1761.”

 

Between the years of 1730 to 1754, James Bobbitt and Elizabeth Dalton Bennett Bobbitt had nine children, the fourth being our ancestor, William (William has been the most popular male name in the Bobbitt family).

 

 

Captain William Bobbitt

 

William was born in 1744 in Prince George County, Virginia, in or near the home of his grandfather William Bobbitt.  When he was 15 years old, his family moved to what was then Halifax County, later becoming Pittsylvania County.  This was where his father, James, had a plantation on the Pigg River and Frying Pan Creek.  The land is easily located today in a community called Sandy Level. 

 

William inherited land, with his brother James Jr., from his father upon his death in 1761.  He was also gifted land from his maternal grandfather William Bobbitt.  The brothers, James Jr. and William, married sisters….  William to Ann Nancy McKenzie and James to Elizabeth McKenzie. 

 

On March 4. 1778, William Bobbitt was recommended as a Captain in the county militia.  He served as Captain for four years, resigning in 1782.  The details of William’s years as militia commander aren’t known, but they covered the period when the Revolution was touching western Virginia.  An Aaron Collier’s pension application makes it plain that his company met at Bobbitt’s house before marching on to far western Virginia in the Indian campaign.  Collier again refers to the company meeting at Bobbitt’s house before going to North Carolina and the battle at Shallow Ford on the Yadkin River.  The implication is that William Bobbitt commanded the company on both occasions. 

 

By 1782, William was a prosperous man, as that year he was taxed with six slaves, five horses, and twenty head of cattle.  In 1793, he attended the first Grayson Court and stood as surety for the first sheriff of the county.  A few years later, he was appointed Justice and sat on the court for many years.  There are many references to him in the minutes of the court, the most memorable occuring in April of 1808 when he was fined eighty-three cents for having “profanely sworn one oath in the presence of the court.” 

 

William and his brother, James lived closely together until James Jr. moved to Pulaski County, Kentucky in 1796.

 

In almost every land deed recorded for William Bobbitt, his wife Nancy is included in some way; and what was more unusual for the times, Nancy frequently signed the deeds along with William. 

 

Captain William and Nancy Ann had ten children between the years of 1768 and 1790.  Their fourth child, James Levi Bobbitt is our ancestor.  Several of the children, including James Levi, followed their Uncle James Bobbitt to Pulaski County, Kentucky. 

 

Nancy died in 1807 and Captain William Bobbitt in 1817. They are buried in the Bobbitt family cemetery at Fancy Gap Virginia, near Galax.   After his death, Captain William’s estate was appraised at $1830.

 

 

JAMES LEVI BOBBITT

 

James Levi was born on April 27, 1772, in what was then Montgomery County, Virginia.  He was named for his grandfather.

 

In 1796, James married Rebecca Day, the daughter of Joseph and Rebecca Day of Bute County, North Carolina. Rebecca was a Quaker.  She later joined the Methodist Church with the provision that they would not put any water on her. 

 

In 1799, James’ sister, Elizabeth married a William Morgan who was from Pulaski County, Kentucky. They were married in Virginia, but later moved to Kentucky.  It was likely this William Morgan who convinced several of Captain William’s children, including James Levi, to follow their Uncle James Bobbitt to Kentucky, hoping to find more fertile land on which to grow tobacco.

 

James Levi and Rebecca moved to Pulaski County in 1804, where they lived with his Uncle James Bobbitt who had received a land grant there for his service in the Revolutionary War.  James’ sister Jane Bobbitt Richardson and her husband, David Richardson also moved to Pulaski County in 1804, but they later went on to Rush County, Indiana.  Jane is buried in a Richardson Cemetery in Big Springs, Boone County, Indiana.

 

James Levi and Rebecca Day Bobbitt had six children who lived to maturity.  The first three were born in Virginia and moved with their parents to Kentucky.  They all married in Kentucky.  William married Permelia Cragg; Susannah married John McKenzie; and John married Orpha Pascall. 

 

The last three children of James Levi and Rebecca were born in Kentucky.  The sisters, Nancy and Polly, never married, while our ancestor, James Levi Jr., married Jane Hubble.

 

The 1850 census of Pulaski County indicates that 78 year old James Bobbitt owned $3,000 worth of real estate.  He lived with his 77 year old wife, Rebecca, and their unmarried daughters, Nancy and Polly.  Their son James Levi Jr. lived with them as well, with his wife Jane and their children, eight year old Rebecca, six year old Nancy, four year old Sarah, and three year old Mary.  William Levi had not been born at the time the census was taken.

 

Rebecca died on September 10, 1852 and James Levi on November 12, 1853.  They are both buried in the Old Bobbitt Cemetery which is located in a wood, close to the “old Green Woodall Place”, east of Welborn Post Office, somewhere near Somerset, Kentucky (this is the cemetery we couldn’t find).  James Levi had named his sons, William and James Levi Jr., as executors of his will.  William preceded his father in death, so James Levi Jr. became the sole executor of the will.  After their parents’ deaths, the property and the furnishings were used by Nancy and Polly, the two unmarried daughters.

 

Will of James Levi Bobbitt

 

“I James Bobbitt of Pulaski County… desire that may wife live on and occupy as much of my farm as she may think necessary….

 

That 180 acres of my land be divided, after the death of my wire, between my three children, James L. Bobbitt, Nancy Bobbitt, and Polly Day Bobbitt.   … I have advanced to my other children, land equal to them.

 

After the death of my wife, my property is to be sold, and divided into six shares, and divided equally among my six children.

 

I appoint James L. Bobbitt and William Bobbitt, my sons, executors…. October 24, 1844.

 

 

James Levi Bobbitt, Jr.

 

James Levi Jr. was born in Pulaski County, Kentucky on February 7, 1817.  He was the third son, the sixth and last child of James and Rebecca Bobbitt. 

 

James Levi married a Pulaski County girl, Jane Hubble, on December 28, 1841.  They lived on land owned by his father, James Levi Sr.   Through the years, James Jr. purchased shares of the land from his siblings, and purchased many of the adjoining farms.  Eventually James Levi owned one of the largest farms in the area. 

 

James L. became the family caretaker and looked after his two unmarried sisters, Nancy and Polly.  He and his other sister, Susannah Bobbitt McKenzie, were the only two of the James and Rebecca Day Bobbitt family to remain in Pulaski County.  The others went on to Missouri.  For many years, James L. was the postmaster at Valley Oak after it was established in 1866.

 

James L. and Jane Hubble Bobbitt had eight children; one daughter, Deniza, died at age nine in 1865.  Susannah never married, and died at age 92 in 1947. 

Rebecca married William Cragg in 1866

Nancy married George Claunch in 1867

Sarah married Edwin Brinkley in 1867

William married Alice Jane Mchargue in 1872

John Bruce married Nannie Gilmore in 1891 and Hessie Miller in 1928

 

James L. and Jane lived their entire lives in Pulaski County.  James died on July 6, 1889, and Jane died on August 3, 1892.  Both are buried in the Bobbitt Cemetery near Flat Lick, Kentucky.

 

 

William Levi Bobbitt

 

William Levi was born July 12, 1850 in Pulaski County.  On August 29, 1872, he married Alice Jane McHargue.  The marriage record in Pulaski County shows her as Alice Jane McHarve.

 

He was known to family members as “Uncle Bud”.  As a young man, he fell into a thrashing machine and cut off both legs just below the knees.  It is said that he walked on his knees most of his life.

 

He died in 1908, when he was fifty-eight, but Alice Jane lived nearly another 30 years.   Sometime after William Levi’s death, their youngest child, George William (Uncle Bill), went to Wyoming to homestead, and at some point Alice Jane went there to live with her bachelor son.  She returned to Kentucky in 1932, and died there in 1937.  She is buried with William Levi in the Bobbitt Cemetery in Pulaski County.

 

Alice Jane and William Levi had six children, Cora, Stella, Nancy T., James Henderson, John H., and George William.  James Henderson is our ancestor.

 

 

James Henderson Bobbitt

 

James Henderson was born August 14, 1880, in Pulaski County.  On January 24, 1901, he married Talitha Cecile Green(e).  Talitha was from Pineville, in Bell County.  James and Talitha wasted no time starting a family, as Jesse Mable Bobbitt was born nine months later on October 29, 1901.  A year later the first son, Ray Francis Bobbitt, was born on December 19, 1902. 

 

On a trip to Kentucky in the summer of 2000, my sisters and mother and I discovered why there was a five year gap between the birth of Ray and the next child, Icel Jewell, who was born in 1907.  While trying to locate the grave of James Henderson Bobbitt in Marshall, Indiana, we found a document in the Rockville library indicating that a “baby Bobbitt” was buried in the same cemetery as James Henderson.  When we found Bethany Cemetery, there next to James Henderson’s grave was another marker:

 

OUR BABY

Daughter of James H & Talitha

9/9/04 – 3/4/05

 

This baby is one of our family mysteries.  We don’t know her cause of death at eight months; we don’t know why she hadn’t been named; and we don’t know what she was doing in Indiana in 1905, as the family didn’t move there until about 1921.   I don’t know if we will ever discover the answers to these questions, but it is possible that there were other relatives living in Parke County at the time, and that the young Bobbitt family traveled there to see if they wanted to move to Indiana.  Maybe they had actually moved there, and when the baby died, they went back to Kentucky.  We do know that there had been McHargues in Parke County, maybe they were cousins to James Henderson.

 

The other five Bobbitt children were born in Pulaski County, Icel Jewell on October 15, 1907; Alice Pauline (my mother) on January 14, 1911; twins Dan and Don on December 13, 1913; and Lucy Glenda on July 14, 1917.   The three younger girls were all called by their middle names, Jewell, Pauline, and Glenda.

 

 

PAULINE BOBBITT HANSEN   (my mother)

 

Pauline’s father, James Henderson, was a tobacco farmer near Flat Lick in Pulaski County.  Pauline remembers worming the tobacco plants, walking through the tall plants and knocking worms off into buckets of water or maybe kerosene.  The children also picked blackberries, and to avoid being eaten up by chiggers, they had to wear long sleeves, and their mother would wrap cloths soaked in kerosene around their ankles.    Their father also grew sugar cane, and every fall people from the area would gather to make molasses.

 

There was a pond across the road from the Bobbitt house.  To reach the pond, the children crossed a style over a fence.  A family named Noe lived across from the pond; Denver Noe was Pauline’s “boyfriend”.  The Noes had an apple orchard with small sweet apples.  A game the kids played was to poke an apple onto the end of a sharpened stick and then “thwack” the stick to see who could make the apple fly off the farthest.  A Dr. Garner also lived by the pond, only on the same side of the road as the pond.

 

During our summer 2000 trip to Kentucky, we located the old Bobbitt house.   The woman who lived there was not at home, but we met her son-in-law who lived across the road.  Amazingly, the woman who lives in the house is the widow of my mother’s childhood friend, Denver Noe.

 

As we walked around the house and saw the old barn out in back, mother remembered that the barn had been there when she was a child.  She remembered that her father, James Henderson, had mules and that other farmers would bring their horses to breed with the mules.  James Henderson didn’t want his little girls to see what was going on out in the barn, so the children were forbidden to come out when the farmers with their horses came to call.  The outhouse was not too far from the barn, though, and it had a big knothole where the children watched the goings on!

 

The Bobbitt children caught frogs in the pond so that the family could have frog legs. Sometimes their mother would kill a chicken for dinner.  Each member of the family got one particular chicken part every time.  My mother thinks that’s why she doesn’t like white meat now.  Her assigned chicken part as a child was always white meat.

 

The Minter family lived down the road from the Bobbitts, and Mrs. Minter and Talitha had an undeclared competition to see who could get the laundry out on the line first on Monday mornings.   After Mrs. Minter started to win all the time, they discovered that she was putting her wash out on Sunday nights so that she could beat Talitha! (2003 Note: Actually it was the Couch family, and the laundry battle was with Mrs. Couch.  This was the family that had the store where Glen Minter worked.)

 

Glen Minter, who married Jessie Mable, was probably part of that Minter family.  Before Glen and Jesse moved to Ohio, he worked in the store that was just down from the Bobbitt’s house.

 

About 1920/21, evidently a decision was made to leave Kentucky and go to Indiana.  We don’t know what motivated this move.   James Henderson left before the rest of the family, probably to find a place for the family to live in Indiana.   Jesse Mable was married by this time to Glen Minter, and living in Ohio.  Ray was working somewhere near Chicago, maybe at West Bend, probably going there right out of high school. 

 

Jewell was about fourteen, and did not want to leave Kentucky.  The other kids would sing “My Old Kentucky Home” to tease her and make her cry.

 

We don’t know how long James Henderson had been gone before the rest of the family went to meet him.   Talitha and the other children went by train to Rockville, Indiana, where the family leased land and lived on a farm outside of Rockville.   The Bobbitts continued to farm in Indiana, but not raising tobacco.   They had cows and chickens, and maybe some pigs, and they grew seed corn and probably some wheat.  My mother remembers walking down the country road to work in the corn fields.  I don’t think she liked it much!

 

The children went to school in Rockville, the younger ones riding the bus to elementary school.  Jewell was in high school, and there were no buses for high schoolers, so she drove a horse and buggy to school every day.  There was a place in town that took care of the horses while the students were in school.

 

When Pauline was in the eighth grade, her father got pneumonia and was very sick.  Her brother, Ray, came from Chicago to help out; but when it looked like their father was over the crisis, Ray returned to Chicago.  Suddenly James Henderson got worse again, and he died on February 14, 1926.   Talitha was just forty-five, and she was left with Jewell who was a senior in high school, Pauline in eighth grade, and Dan and Don in sixth.  James was buried in Marshall at Bethany Cemetery next to his infant daughter who had died in 1905.

 

After Jewell graduated from high school she went to Ohio to live with Jesse and Glen; Talitha left the farm and moved into a house on the outskirts of Rockville with Pauline, Dan and Don, and Glenda.  This house might have been in town, but they still had an outdoor privy.

 

They stayed in Rockville for two years after James Henderson died.  Mother doesn’t remember that Talitha had any sort of job during that time.   By then, James’ brother, George William (Uncle Bill) had homesteaded in Wyoming and was living there with his mother, Alice Jane McHargue who had also been widowed very young.

 

Whether Uncle Bill invited her, or whether Talitha invited herself, we don’t know; but she and Pauline, Dan, Don and Glenda went to Wyoming in 1928 to stay with Uncle Bill on his ranch.   Although we don’t know this, we believe that Talitha thought Uncle Bill would marry her and take care of her family.  Maybe Uncle Bill thought so too, but when Talitha and the children got to Wyoming, they found that Uncle Bill’s ranch house was a soddy out in the middle of nowhere on a Wyoming prairie. 

 

The whole family lived on the prairie that first summer they were in Wyoming, but it was probably a little close for so many people in that sod house, and very possible that Talitha and her mother-in-law, Alice Jane, didn’t get along in such close quarters.   Uncle Bill got Talitha a house in Newcastle on Winthrop Street, across from the junior high school.  Talitha and the children lived there during the school year, and Talitha worked doing housework for Yvonne Sedgwick.  After school was out, all except Pauline went back to the ranch.

 

Pauline was a junior in high school the first winter in Newcastle, and the next summer she worked at the Kirkwood Hotel that was owned by a Mrs. Colgate.  Mrs. Colgate later changed the name of the Kirkwood to the Colgate Hotel; it was across from the depot.

 

The next year, Talitha took a job running the Arlington Hotel for the owners who lived in Lusk.  She and the family lived on the first floor and rented out rooms on the second floor for $1 per night.  She also took care of two or three apartments in the hotel. 

 

Sometime after Talitha and kids moved to Wyoming, Pauline’s cousins, the Smiths, also came from Kentucky to live with Uncle Bill and Alice Jane.  Paul, Wally and Mellie Smith were the orphaned children of James Henderson’s sister, Stella Bobbitt and her husband, Wyatt Smith.  We don’t know the cause of Stella and Wyatt’s deaths, but the children had been in an orphanage before they went to Wyoming to live with their Uncle Bill on the ranch. 

 

Pauline graduated from Newcastle High School in 1930 and immediately started teaching school.  After her first year of teaching, she moved out on the prairie north of town where she taught at Red Butte School for the next two years.  Talitha, the twins and Glenda (Diddy) stayed in the Arlington during this time.   Pauline lived in a room above the Red Butte Store(?).  She remembers putting a hot brick at the foot of her bed to keep warm at night and breaking the ice in the wash bowl before she could wash her face in the mornings.   She had to get to school early enough to carry in wood and build a fire before the students arrived.

 

Dick Hansen was Pauline’s beau.  They met when she fell down while skating at the roller rink in Newcastle, and Dick had helped her to get up.  When she was teaching up on the prairie, Dick would go pick her up so that she could come to town for the weekends and then he would take her back again on Sundays.

 

About this time (1932) Uncle Bill Bobbitt died, and Alice Jane stayed at the ranch. Joe Smith, who was an older brother to the other Smith kids, came to try to help her take care of the ranch.  He and Alice Jane stayed on for awhile, but then sold out to the Grieves, and Alice Jane went back to Kentucky, probably to live with some of the Smiths there.

 

In 1933, Talitha got sick and Pauline and Glenda (Diddy) went with her back to Hamilton, Ohio, where Jewell and Jessie lived.  Talitha had gall bladder surgery, and an incision from the surgery never healed properly.  Pauline remembers her mother wrapping some sort of towels or padding around herself where there was leakage from the surgery.

 

Sometime between 1933 and 1935, a man Talitha had known previously came to visit her in Ohio.  Pauline thinks the man was named Claunch, and this is very possible as there were many Claunchs living in the Pulaski County area of Kentucky.  Talitha went with this man to Idaho, taking Glenda (Diddy) with them, as she was still in high school.  Pauline stayed in Ohio with her sister, Jesse Minter.   We aren’t sure if Talitha and the unknown man were married or not, but evidently they raised potatoes in Idaho as Glenda (Diddy) spoke of it.  If they were married, it must not have lasted because Talitha and Glenda (Diddy) moved back to Hamilton, Ohio. 

 

While Pauline was in Ohio, Dick Hansen went to Ohio and proposed to her.  They were married on June 20, 1935, in Hamilton, and then went back to Newcastle to live. 

 

Pauline was pregnant with Lynda, her first, when Talitha died in Ohio in 1937.

 

Pauline and Dick had four children all born in Newcastle, Wyoming:

 

Lynda Lee, born December 6, 1937

Wanda Jean, born September 9, 1940

Donald Bobbitt, born February 13, 1944

Alice Arlene, born July 1, 1950

 

 

 

Old Bobbitt Cemetery

E Hwy 80 - 461 - Wellborn Road

Somerset, KY

The lineage of Arlene Hansen...

William Bobbitt & Joanna Sturdivant - VA
William Bobbitt & Mary Green - VA
James Bobbitt & Elizabeth Dalton Bennett - VA
Captain William Bobbitt & Elizabeth McKenzie - VA
James Levi Bobbitt & Rebecca Day - VA to KY
James L. Bobbitt Jr. & Jane Hubble - Pulaski Co KY
William Levi Bobbitt & Alice Jane McHargue - Pulaski Co KY
James Henderson Bobbitt & Talitha Cecil Greene - Pulaski Co KY
Alice Pauline Bobbitt & Richard Hansen - Weston Co WY
Arlene Hansen (me)