Alva Hixon and Salome (Mearkle) Karns
Alva was born on 25 June 1854 near the town of Everett in Bedford County, Pennsylvania. He was the fifth of eight children born to John Heft and Rachel (Hixson) Karns. He married Salome Mearkle about 1878. Their first child, Nancy, born in 1881, died soon after birth. They had eight other children, one of whom died early. The others all had families of their own. Salome died of pneumonia on 16 Sept 1896. The two younger children, Elmer and Carl, were sent to live in foster homes. A shoe cobbler by trade, in 1904 Alva took the train to Englevale, Kansas with the five children still living at home. They later moved west, settling finally in the area around Ford, Kansas. Alva had a housekeeper, Grace Geary, whom he married about 1917. They moved to Bellingham, Washington, where Alva died of a stroke on 13 Mar 1939. He was cremated.
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