Fourth Generation (Continued)

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Family of Jeremiah "Jerry" Thomas SKILLMAN (C6) & Minnie BIRNEY

C8. Cleon B. SKILLMAN.37 Born near Lexington, Nebraska.37

Cleon B. married Gertrude Mae HENRY of Bloomington, Illinois.37

From Nebraska: the Land and the People: Volume 2, p. 522:37

Mrs. Skillman, who was a devout worker in the United Brethren Church, died on March 1, 1904, of pneumonia. Uncle Tom, as Mr. Skillman was known, then went to live with his son J. T. Skillman, who at that time lived at Pleasanton, Nebraska. He died from the effect of the flu at the J. T. Skillman home of Lexington, Nebraska, on October 23, 1923, lacking only a few days of being eighty years of age.

One other son was born to them, Moses, who died at the age of one month. Jerry T. grew to man hood in the environment of the new country and on June 20, 1889, was united in marriage to Miss Minnie Birney, a teacher in the Seward schools and daughter of another Illinois family. He died of a paralytic stroke at his home near Lexington, June 29, 1931. To this union one child was born, Cleon B. Skillman of Lexington, who married Miss Gertrude Henry of Bloomington, Illinois.

A fitting conclusion to this sketch is the following notation by the grandson, Cleon B. Skillman:

"Occasionally I travel down Highway No. 11, known to the old folks as "the steam wagon road," and I cannot resist turning the corner when I come to the by-road that leads by the old homestead. The fine orchard, the large cotton wood trees, every sign of the buildings, are gone from the old Skillman place, but always I recall some incident of pioneer life, for instance, the time the dugout door blew open in the night and when Mr. Skillman awoke and, slipping out of bed to close it, he was knee deep in snow that had drifted between the door and the fireplace. Then as I go on to the cemetery on the hill, to the lot with the two stones marked, respectively, 'Skillman' and 'Johnson,' a peaceful quiet seems to hover over the place where these pioneers sleep, peacefully, side by side in death, the same as they struggled, worked and lived side by side in life."


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