Saturday, April 7, 2012

The Nineteenth Child: Nelle

Nelle and Wilson Clark

Nellie "Nelle" TURPIN was born 20 July 1893 on her parent's homestead in Rock County, Nebraska shortly after her father’s death.  She was the last child in Newt and Mary Ellen’s family.

She was nine years old before her mother remarried.  James Estlack became her step-father and the family, with only Nelle and Newtie at home, then moved to Haigler in Dundy County in western Nebraska. 

Nelle married Wilson Clark on 19 April 1919.  Wilson was born 24 Oct 1897 on his parents’ homestead outside Stratton, Nebraska in Hitchcock County.  His parents were Percy Bennet Clark (1865-1938) and Alta Estella Price (1874-1963).

Nelle and Wilson made their home in Stratton, a town of 660 people.  They owned and ran the Clark Bakery in town.  But in the 1930s, times were hard.   In 1937 Wilson decided to sell the bakery and take the family out west.  They bought a small travel trailer and headed for Washington to visit Nelle's sister, Julia.  Wilson was familiar with Washington and Oregon, having traveled there as a young man.  He and Nelle had married in the small town of Lents, now part of Portland, Oregon. The family spent a summer in Yakima, Washington making baked goods for the apple farm workers.  Later they traveled down the coast, over the new Golden Gate Bridge, to southern California.  Wilson’s father took ill in 1938 and the family returned to Nebraska.  Soon the family moved to Denver, Colorado and Wilson went to work for the Rainbow Baker where he was the oven man. 

It will be exciting to discover them in the 1940 census!

Nellie and Wilson had two children:  Lyle Leland Clark (1920-1985) who married Marjorie Odren, and Leta Ellen Clark (1926-2009) who married Jack Bell.

Nellie died 3 July 1966 in Denver, Colorado.  Wilson died 17 January 1992.   

(Thanks to Dennis Bell who provide much of the information for this posting.)

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