When Charles W. Graham was a lad of station, he left Millville on April 14 1850 with his uncle Theodore Graham, John Baker and Isom Atkinson in a 4 horse covered wagon for the California gold fields. They crossed the Mississippi at Savanna, Illinois and joined a west bound caravan. On October 27 1850, they reached Georgetown, California. The route was around Council Bluffs, up the Platte to Ft. Laramie thence up the North Fork of the Platte and along the Sweet Water River through Devil's Gate thence coming the Bear River and on in to Salt Lake. They crossed the Rocky Mountains in Wyoming on June 17th and followed the Humboldt River until it spread out over the sands and disappeared. The trip of 41 miles over the Humboldt Desert [for photos, click here If this looks like something you might want to try, click here.] was negotiated. . .
and they went up the Carson River and crossed the Sierra Madres where the snow was 100 feet deep in places and thence on to Downieville and the Feather River. The lad had adventures aplenty. His uncle Theodore faced difficulties controlling the boy who was beginning to lead a wild and unrestrained life and the father Thomas J. Graham ordered Charles to return home. This he did by the Isthmus of Panama and the Mississippi River. Going out, the party rested at Salt Lake for about four weeks and witnessed the celebration of the founding of the Mormon Church on July 28, 1850. They saw Brigham Young surrounded by his 24 wives and heard his sermon. Young forbade any of the gold seekers to take away any of the wheat from Salt Lake. The desert was stewn with bones of asses, mules and horses and the wreckage of wagons etc. They met a wagon load of water. The wagon owner asked too high a price and the famished adventurers drew revolvers and helped themselves. At Downieville, twelve mules were bought and the guns packed through in Sacramento. When twenty miles from Stockton on the Merced River, Indians stole the mules and stabled them in the snow. The party, well-armed, pursued them and retrieved the mules. While at Tuolumne river which was then a dry creek, one of the party who had strayed away hunting, lost his life to a bear and only his head was found.
On October 14, 1858 Charles W. Graham married Margaret Hay daughter of John and Margaret (Cameron)Hay and sister of Cameron, Andrew and John Hay, Jr. She was born in Scotland in 1837 and came with her parents in Warren in 185X. She died in Warren in 1914. Two[ten] children blessed this union (see the Hay article).
Fred Arthur Graham, the first child born near Lena in 1859 died in Wayne, Wis in 186X. Frank Graham, the 2nd child was born in Warren in 1860 and married Ida Mercy [Morey?] of Winslow, Ill in The second wife is Martha Jennett [Maritta Bessett?] of Primghar Ia. They spent their XXX years in Wisconsin and Iowa and have lived in Warren since XXXX. Frank is the father of XXX children.
Anna Gilmore Graham, the second child of Charles W. was born in Nora Township in 1863. She married William Usher of Warren Wis in 1887 and died in Primghar Ia. in 1918 the mother of three children.
Charles W. Graham, Jr, the 4th child was born in Nora Township in 1866 and married Julia Usher of Wayne in 1886. She is a cousin of Samuel Usher. Charles W. Graham, Jr. was a well driller. He died in Revillo, South Dakota, the father of five children.
John C. Graham, the 5th child of Charles W. Graham, was born in Wayne, Wisc in 1868 and married Jennie daughter of Leonard Jenkins of South Wayne, Wisc. He is a professor of Agriculture at Amherst College in Massachusettes and has two children.
Helen Margaret Graham, the 6th child was born in Wayne. In XXXX she married Jerome Clow of Cherokee Ia, where she resides with her three children.
Agnes Adeline Graham the 7th child of Charles W. was born in Wayne in 1873 and married Carl Copeland Parsons of New York. They live on Hastings-on-the-[Hudson], NY and have no children.
Captain Andrew Thomas Graham, U.S. Navy, known in Warren as "Pedro" was born in Wayne in XXXX and graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy in XXXX, but has since married, the first wife being Nettie and the second Georgia Fairfield. The Captain has three children.
Mae Lillian Graham, the 9th child was born in Wayne in XXXX and in XXXX, married Warren Little of Lamoni, Iowa where she lives, her husband having died in XXX. She has no children.
Rose Isabel Graham, the 10th and youngest child of Charles W. was born in 1880. In Wayne, she married James Richards of Warren, and they lived at Cherokee, Ia, parents of 2 children.
Charles W. Graham's life was full of adventure. As a member of Co. H. 96th Inft, he received a hand wound at Chicamauga on the skirmish line and was captured. He escaped and got to a hospital and was duly mustered out with his regiment.
Please contact me if you can read any of this or know any of the missing information. For Part I of this article, click here and for Part III, click here.