Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Sally Ann Porter Simmons

Sally Ann Porter was born about 1818 in Chautauqua County, New York. She was the daughter of William Porter and his first wife, who's name is unknown at this time.

She married Ziba/Zeba Simmons about 1835. Sally Ann and Ziba Simmons divorced between 1860 and 1870. Ziba remarried a widow/divorcee named Betsey Williams Winn. It appears that Sally Ann did not remarry, at least not by the time she disappeared from the census records after the 1880 federal. I recently submitted a research request at the New York State Department of Health for Sally Ann Simmons. I am hoping that a death record might be found for her between 1880 and 1900.

Four children are known to have been born to this union: Isaac Simmons (b. abt 1836), Lorenzo Simmons (b. abt 1839), Obed/Obia/Obid Simmons (b. abt 1841), and Phebe/Phoeba C Simmons (b. abt 1847). Of these four children I think I've found more info on Obed and Phebe.

The evidence for Obed is circumstantial. There are census records for a Harriet "Hattie" and Obed Simmons. Harriet "Hattie" Winn was a daughter of Obed's father's second wife, Betsey Williams Winn. This Obed Simmons disappears between 1900-1920. This Hattie Simmons appears in the 1920 Federal Census living in Spokane, Spokane, Washington with her son, Guy Simmons and his family. She died Nov 1929 in Rapid City, Pennington, South Dakota. Her son, Guy Simmons, died the following year, 1930, in Rapid City, Pennington, South Dakota from injuries he suffered in an auto accident. Both are buried in Mountain View Cemetery, Rapid City, SD. Obed and Hattie also had a daughter, Ella M Simmons. She was born 22 Sep 1884 in Pennsylvania (most likely Corry, Erie, Pa), and died 28 Aug 1954 in Los Angeles, Los Angeles, California. It appears Ella never married. Guy Simmons and his wife, Emma, had at least one son, Robert Gene Simmons. His death record lists his date of birth as 11 Dec 1919 in Spokane, Spokane, Washington, and his date of death as 28 Jan 1992 in Riverside County, California. Robert's army enlistment papers states a profession of "Actors and actresses". So far I've been unable to substantial this.

The evidence for Phebe Simmons is also circumstantial. A Phebe Simmons supposedly married James H. Lyon about 1866-1867. A James H. Lyon is found in the 1860 federal census living in Chautauqua County, NY with another wife and two children. By 1870 a James H. Lyon and Phebe C. Lyon are living in Nauvoo, Hancock, Illinois with their young son, Darwin Z. Lyon. It is possible that the James H. Lyon in the 1860 and 1870 federal censuses are the same; however, there is no evidence of this at this time. I have seen online that Darwin's middle name is Ziba. This is where the circumstantial evidence comes in, along with the date and place of birth for Phebe C. Simmons. The James H. Lyon married to Phebe was an insurance agent. That might be why they traveled around the country as they did. Son, Darwin, was born in Missouri, prior to them being found in 1870 in Illinois. Sometime between 1870 and 1877, Phebe and James most likely divorced; however, he could have died. Either way, she marries again about 1877 a Herman E. Burnham. In 1880 federal census Herman, Phebe, and Darwin are living in Bradford, McKean, PA. In 1900 all are found in Kootenai County, Idaho. This is the last census record found for Herman and Phebe. Darwin Z. Lyon died 6 Mar 1931 in Rathdrum, Kootenai, ID. I'm thinking that both Herman and Phebe also died in Rathdrum. Darwin Z. Lyon married Ora May Gill on 28 Feb 1900 in Rathdrum, Kootenai, Idaho. They had at least eight children: Herman Burnham Lyon (1900-1965), Hildore C. Lyon (1903-1954), Marian Arva Lyon Wiese Wart (1904-1964), Harold I. Lyon (1907-1968), Thelma C. Lyon (1910-?), Harry Darwin Lyon, 1912-1980), Herbert E. Lyon (1916-1982), Hallie Z. Lyon (1917-1988).

Obviously there is much more work to do on Sally Ann Porter Simmons and her descendants.

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