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Genealogy Profile: Lloyd Howard Hawley (1899-1956)

Pam Hawley Marlin   October 2020


The following genealogy profile is based on research compiled by the author. Lloyd Howard Hawley is the author's great-grandfather. View Hawley Family Tree.

Lloyd Howard Hawley


Beginnings - Kansas to Illinois

Lloyd Howard Hawley, the author's great-grandfather, was born to Walter Martin Hawley and Mary Lou (Louie) Stilwel in Garnett, Anderson county, Kansas on December 17, 1899. Lloyd married Emma Elizabeth Skeens on April 10, 1920 in Paola, Kansas. This Hawley family consisted of Walter (father), Mary Lou (Louie) (mother), Emma (wife), and children, Inez, Calvin, Wanda, and Howard.

Lloyd was descended from a line of Hawley men ( John Sr., John Jr., Martin and Walter) who made their living as farmers. Each one of these men owned many acres of farmland in New York, Pennsylvania, Michigan, Iowa, and Kansas as the family migrated west. It was not unusual for the Hawley patriarch and his sons to establish their homestead on the same farmland for a time before the eldest son would venture out on his own.


Childhood home in Garnett, Kansas

In January 1887, Lloyd's grandfather, Martin Hawley, bought 80 acres of a quarter section of the Leavenworth, Lawrence and Galveston (L.L. & G.) railroad land near Garnett, Kansas and built a house. Lloyd's father, Walter, also built a house on this land and this is where Lloyd grew up.

The Walter Hawley homestead in Union Township, Kansas (near Garnett) where Lloyd grew up.

Lloyd listed in the 1900 Anderson County Kansas census with parents Walter and Louie and siblings.

Lloyd Howard Hawley as an infant.

Lloyd's parents, Walter and Mary Lou (Louie) with daughters, Bertha and Myrtle. This photo was taken before Lloyd was born.


Round Oak School (Growlerville) near Garnett, Kansas

Lloyd, along with his siblings and cousins, attended the Round Oak School (District 91), which was adjacent to his childhood home. Only the foundations of this school remain today. Lloyd also attended Garnett High School.

Round Oak School.

Round Oak School roster.

The Garnett Evening Review, April 10, 1908.

Today the Round Oak School is surrounded by woods and only the original foundation is visible. Photo: P. Marlin (me in the photo)

On September 12, 1918, at the age of 19, Lloyd registered for service in World War I (Registration card). When he got on the train to leave, however, it was announced that the war was over. According to the 1920 census, Lloyd is still living at home and is employed as a Chauffeur for Express Wagon.

Lloyd (left) with his Hawley cousins.


Marriage to Emma Elizabeth Skeens

On April 10, 1920, Lloyd married Emma Elizabeth Skeens in Paola, Kansas. To this union were born four children, Inez, Calvin, Wanda, and Howard. By the 1930 census, Lloyd and his family are living in Washington Township, near Bush City, Kansas, not far from the family farm he grew up on.

Emma Elizabeth Skeens, born in Paola, Kansas.

Unlike his ancestors befoe him, Lloyd did not go into farming, but instead became a "pumper" for the local oil wells. The duty of a Pumper is to set the wells to operate according to production schedules and switch the flow of oil between storage tanks. Pumpers also separate natural gas from the oil by operating valves and compressors and concern themselves with the cost-effectiveness of the pump operation.

The 1930 Anderson County Kansas census with Lloyd, Emma, and family.


Bush City, Kansas

During Lloyd's employment as a pumper, the only 'town' located near his home in rural Kansas was Bush City Station (or Haskell). It was here that Lloyd's kids, Calvin, Wanda and Inez, went for soda and Lloyd worked on cars (in the buildings depicted below). What was once a bustling community is now just farmland and a few abandoned buildings.

Bush City, Kansas.

The same view of Bush City, Kansas in 2020.

Three of Lloyd and Emma's children, Wanda, Calvin and Inez.


Permanent move to Salem, Illinois

Sometime after 1930, Lloyd decided to leave Kansas. He packed up the family and headed west to Raymond, Washington, and then to California. In the late 1930's, however, there was news of a major oil field strike near Salem, Illinois. Lloyd and his family packed up again and headed back east.

Salem, the county seat of Marion County, Illinois, was a sleepy farm community in 1937 before oil was struck. After the discovery of a major oil field in 1938, the small town was overrun with oil drillers in what became known as the "Salem Oil Rush." When Lloyd and his family arrived, the town was so crowded that people were sleeping on resident's porches and in tents. It was a local preacher, Basil Parrish, who helped Lloyd and his family find a place to live.

"Cots in demand because of oil boom, Salem, Illinois." Photo Library of Congress

In Salem, Lloyd was an employee of The Texas Company. In 1948, his W-2 shows that he made an annual salary of $3592.32.

Lloyd Hawley W-2 for 1948.

400 E. Clark Street in Salem where Lloyd and his family lived for a time. This is a very small house. View Salem, Illinois Then and Now photos.

Lloyd and Emma with their children, Howard, Calvin (author's grandfather), Wanda, and Inez photographed in Salem.


Church Life in Salem

Shortly after moving to Salem, Lloyd and Emma met a pastor, Basil Parrish, of the United Pentecostal Church in Salem. Living accommodations were hard to find because of the Salem Oil Rush, however, Parrish had a house that Lloyd could rent. Lloyd and and Emma started to attend the little United Pentecostal Church where they continued to attend for the rest of their lives. At one point, Lloyd and Emma lived at the house right next door to the church, 625 North Shelby. The photo below is of Lloyd leaving his house with his trumpet and bible, and walking to the church next door.

Lloyd Hawley heads to church with trumpet and bible.

Authors note: Lloyd's son, Howard, has an antique shop in Salem. When I was perusing old photos in the shop, I came across the above photo of my great-grandfathter, Lloyd, as he was leaving his home, bible in one hand, a trumpet in the other, walking to church right next door. This was a photo I had not seen before. Wow, a trumpet? I did not even know he was a musician. I knew my grandfather, Calvin, was a musician who played his guitar in church, and my father occasionally played the banjo. I, too, am a musician, having played the saxophone at my church for more than 25 years, and here was my great grandfather, Lloyd, doing the same thing nearly 80 years before. A tradition set way before my time that was being carried on now that my son plays his saxophone in church, being the 5th generation to do so. It was at that moment that I felt a greater significance to our kinship that reached way beyond the DNA that we shared. What a heritage!


Life as told through newspaper clippings


The Garnett Review. May 19, 1921.


Journey's End

Lloyd Howard Hawley died on February 4, 1956 at his home in Salem, Illinois. Lloyd and Emma are buried in the Salem Cemetery.

Lloyd and Emma Hawley. Lloyd had lost weight due to cancer.

Lloyd and Emma Hawley in the Salem, Illinois cemetery.