Timothy G. Adams
Submitted by Scott Adams
Eliza, the first child of Lewis and Maria Laughlin was
born March 14, 1849 at De Peyster, New York. She died in her home
in Colorado Springs, Colorado, December 22, 1930 at the age of 81
years At the close of the Civil War she went with her parents and
younger brothers on the long trip to Iowa where they lived in a log cabin
near Little Cedar, Iowa. There she attended school and we find her
name listed with a group of other pupils. It was while she lived
there that she married Timothy
Adams on February 21, 1867.
Timothy Goodwin Adams was born December 12, 1843 at
Ware, Pennsylvania and died December 26, 1935 in Colorado Springs,
Colorado. He was a mason by trade. In the early days in
Colorado he prospected for gold in the mountains. He was an active
member of the G. A. R. After he was 87 years old he had to have
his right hand amputated but he did not let that handicap him and kept
as busy as ever and learned to write real well with his left hand
Later, he fell and broke his hip and was confined to a wheel chair for
the rest of his life.
For a few years after they were married Eliza and
Timothy lived near Little Cedar, Iowa. We find that four of their
children were born there. They moved to Lucas in Dunn County, near
Menomonie, Wisconsin, where three more of the children were born.
In 1886 Timothy's sister and family who had lived near
Menomonie went to Colorado and liked it so well they encouraged Eliza
and Timothy to make the move also.
The children thought their grandmother Lidia Angelina
Cleveland Adams who went with them, kept a diary but no one has been
able to find it.
The following account of the trip was written by Harry
and Cora Adams Bowser from information given by the older children,
Jennie, Arthur and Ernest who were old enough to remember the trip.
MR. AND MRS. T. G. ADAMS TRIP FROM WISCONSIN TO COLORADO
WITH THEIR SIX CHILDREN
AND HIS MOTHER (LIDIA ANGELINE CLEVELAND ADAMS)
It was about noon on August 18, 1887 that the Adams
family left their four room log home (two rooms downstairs and two rooms
upstairs). The house was located ten miles west of Menomonie
on the north side of the old Hudson road but the stable and hayshed were
on the south side. The children were Nathan, Arthur,
Jennie, Elmer, Ernest, and Cora, who not yet a year old.
They had two wagons; the lead wagon, a new one
drawn by two yoke of oxen, and driven by Arthur. Nathan drove the
second wagon with a yoke of oxen given to him by his grandfather Adams.
In all, they had eleven head of cattle including two
milk cows. They went about seven miles that first afternoon.
Several friends and relatives camped with them the first night.
These included Mr. and Mrs. Judd Adams (T. G. Adams brother), his sister
Mrs. Cordelia S. Smith and two children Willie and Etta.
Mrs. Bennett, a sister of Mrs. Judd Adams, her little boy, and a friend
Mrs. Lidia Adams put a feather bed in the wagon where
she slept. On the average they made ten or twelve miles a day.
They ferried across the St. Croix and Mississippi rivers
west through Blooming Prairie to Austin, Minnesota. where they
stopped for about a week. From there Mrs. T. G. Adams took Cora
and and Ernest by train to Osage, Iowa to visit her family. Her
brother Jim, came back with her and stayed for a few days with the
From there they went on west into the Pipestone county
and into Dakota. (It wasn't divided at that time). Eliza had
two brothers - Willard and Frank, also an uncle and some cousins living
near Egan in Moody County. They must have been there two weeks or
more. Merdith, the daughter of Willard was only a few days old at
that time. Nathan and Arthur worked at threshing grain and
plowing. From there they went to Yankton, where they ferried the
Missouri River into Nebraska and on south to Columbus where a very happy
experience awaited them. There was a large corn field, so they
inquired if they might clean the field and have the stalks for their
cattle. To their surprise the owner was grandmother Adams'
brother, whom she had not seen since they were children. His name
was Gilbert Cleveland. They put up there for the winter with
George Cleveland, a cousin of T. G. Adams. Timothy did plastering
and the boys did whatever they could get to do. Jennie worked for
her board in Columbus and went to school.
Sometime in June, they started west along the
Platt River. About a mile out of Arapahoe, they met
By Allen. Timothy knew
him first. He was a chaplain and comrade of his in the Civil War,
so they camped there for ten day or more and Mr. Allen spent some time
visiting with them. They all worked where they could get anything
to do. They were still there on the Fourth of July so Nathan and
Arthur walked back about two miles to attend the celebration in
There were lots of fish, wild geese and prairie chicken
near Columbus. Eliza made a trap to catch the chickens and caught
quite a few which they found very good eating.
They had a little dog with them named Sober. One
day they missed him so Nathan went back to where they had camped the
night before and found the dog waiting there for the family to return.
In Minnesota where they camped there was a lake and a
boat so they did some fishing and caught a very large pickerel.
Ernest was barely seven years old but he vividly remembered one fishing
experience. He went alone and no one knew that he had gone.
He took some bacon from the lunch box and baited a hook and got in a
small boat and took off and threw in his line. Pretty soon he had
a bite. He could hardly hold on but he had been told that if you
loosen your hold the fish would bite the line in two and get away so he
hung on for dear life, with the fish taking him farther and farther out
on the lake. When his folks heard his screams for help his older
brothers Nathan and Arthur took another boat and went to his rescue.
They landed the fish, about three feet in length. Ernest's hands
and fingers were bleeding from the fish line. He never tried that
again, his experience was punishment enough.
Ernest also remembers grating potatoes to make starch
for his grandmother's white apron and bonnet.
During the first few years of their life in Colorado the
Adams family lived in the eastern part of the state where Lewis was born
in Kit Carson County and Harry at Cheyenne Wells. Later they lived
on farms near Calhan and Payton. In 1920 they moved to Colorado
Springs where they spent the rest of their lives. Eliza or Lide as
she was always called, had what in this day we would call a hard life
but she was always cheerful and patient and doing things for other
people. She was a wonderful mother to her children.
The following is an excerpt from her obituary printed in
the local paper. "Mrs. Eliza Adams, 81, wife of Timothy G. Adams,
well known G.A.R. veteran, died last night at her home 21 North
Twenty-fourth St. following an illness of only a few hours. She
was a pioneer resident of the region having resided in El Paso county
for the past 36 years, 12 of which were spent in Colorado Springs and
the others in the eastern part of the county in the vicinity of Calhan
Last February Mr. and Mrs. Adams celebrated their 63rd
wedding anniversary. The married life of this couple was longer
than any other couple in the region. Mrs. Adams was a member of
the Ladies of the G.A.R. and of the First Methodist Church.
Surviving besides the husband are 3 sons, Arthur Adams
of Portland, Oregon, Ernest Adams, this city and Harry Adams of Ellicot,
Colorado; two daughters Mrs. J. N Hollenbaugh of Cheyenne Wells, Mrs.
John Nass, Peyton Colorado; 15 grandchildren and 15 great grandchildren.
Records in the family Bible show that nine children were
born to Timothy and Eliza Adams. They were as follows:
Nathan Parker Adams, the first child of Eliza
and Timothy Adams was born June 29, 1868 at Little Cedar, Iowa.
As a lad he worked on the farm with his father. When he was
about eighteen he went with the family on the long trip to Colorado
and drove one of the ox team. He was killed by lightning while
working in the field while they lived at Calhan, Colorado on July
13, 1903. He was never married.
Arthur Eugene Adams was born February 22,
1870 at Little Cedar, Iowa and died in Oregon March 28, 1961.
He married Olive Morrow Adams, the widow of his brother Elmer on
January 30, 1907. They lived on a farm near Calhan, Colorado
until they moved to Portland, Oregon. They had one son, Elmer
Jennie Effie Adams was born near Little
Cedar, Iowa, November 16, 1872. She went to Colorado with her
parents and lived with them on a farm near Cheyenne Wells, Colorado.
She married Jake Hollenbaugh August 8, 1891. They lived near
Cheyenne Wells for several years until the death of Jake, then
Jennie went to Denver to live with her daughter where she passed
away March 1, 1962. She remained alert all this time and
helped with the early part of this record of the family.
Jennie and Jake had five children: Bessie, William T., Lewis
John, Cora Ellen and Jennie Bell.
Elmer William Adams was born June 19, 1874 at
Little Cedar, Iowa and died January 7, 1905 near Calhan, Colorado.
Elmer was about fourteen years of age when the family made the long
trip from Wisconsin to Colorado so was probably of a great
help to the family. In Colorado he taught school and helped
with the farm work. He married Ruth Morrow August 22, 1899.
He died of T.B. when he was 32 years of age.
Ernest John Adams was born October 19, 1879
at the home near Menomonie, Wisconsin. He died April 8, 1962
from a stroke after recovering from three major operations during
the previous year. While he was at home, Ernest helped with
the farm work and also taught school. He remembered several of
the incidents of the trip to Colorado which are given earlier in the
story. Ernest married Bertha Ruth Senneff, May 17, 1911.
She was born February 1, 1889. After they were married they
lived on a farm near Calhan, Colorado until 1916 when they moved to
Colorado Springs where he established his own business of making
syrups. He was an active member of the Seventh Day Adventist
Church. In an earlier report were are told that grandfather
Samuel Laughlin went to church on Saturday, but the main office of
the church has no record of his membership. However, it was
probably a very small church in New York. Ernest and Bertha
had three children: Glenna Ruth, Norman Ernest, and George
Mattie L. Adams, born January 2, 1882.
died September 2, 1884
Cora Marie Adams was born September 10, 1886.
She was only about a year old when the family made the long trip to
Colorado. She lived on the farm near Calhan, Colorado with her
parents. She married John Nass in 1907. After his
death in 1944 she lived in Colorado Springs near her two daughters.
On December 12, 1948, she married Harry Bowser. After their
marriage they spent the summers living on his farm near Brookville,
Ohio, but in the winter they went back to her home in Colorado
Springs. Cora Adams Nass Bowser is buried in the Peyton
Cemetery at Peyton, Colorado. She was laid to rest in their
family plot beside her first husband, John Nass. Cora and John
Nass had four children: Harold, Bernice G, Thelma Leota and
Lewis J. Adams was born January 13, 1889
Died March 25, 1891.
Harry Newton Adams was born while the family
lived in the eastern part of Colorado. While working with his
father on the farm, he married Iva Arnold. Some time later
they moved to Colorado Springs. They had two boys and two
girls: Arlo, Mildred Mae, Delpha, and Kenneth.
Note: additional information regarding the
families of the children of Timothy and Eliza Adams, are available upon request.
Additional information about Eliza Jerusia Laughlin Adams parents and
siblings are available upon request.