Sisters Mary (left) and Marion Crockett, Edwin and Jessie Crockett’s two daughters (PHOTO CREDIT: Heather Heber Callahan archive)
As previously noted, Edward C. Pulaski’s westward adventure, begun in the spring of 1884, was partly inspired by letters his Uncle Edwin Crockett had written to Celia (Crockett) Pulaski — Edwin’s younger sister and Ed’s mother — during Edwin’s own western adventure in the 1850s. Yet Edwin’s old letters did not constitute the full sum of Edward’s and Edwin’s communications and interactions. Documents in Heather Heber Callahan’s dropbox archive now illuminate that Ed and Edwin had substantial opportunities for personal interaction, perhaps particularly in the periods from 1880-1884 and after 1890. Their paths would cross and recross until Edwin’s death in 1907. In due course, moreover, a growing number of Edwin and wife Jessie Crockett’s descendants would expand the dimensions Ed Pulaski’s extended family in North Idaho.
Edwin’s search for gold had taken him from the James Crockett family farm in Ohio across the Great Plains to California, then to British Columbia, and finally to North Idaho. At Pierce, Idaho in the spring of 1861, with a partner named John Montgomery, Edwin successfully mined $23,000 of the precious metal product (in Vesser, 1987, p. 151). Later in 1861, Edwin made his way back to Ohio; he married Jessie (Janet) Reid on May 26, 1862; and he enlisted in the Union army in the fall of 1863.
Edwin and Jessie’s first child, Thomas, was born February 26, 1863 in Henry County, Ohio, while the Civil War raged. Their second child, Josiah, was born August 21, 1865, a mere four months after General Lee surrendered to General Grant at Appomattox Courthouse, Virginia. Five more children, two girls and three boys, would be born in Ohio. Then, around 1880, Edwin Crockett and his family visited Marshall Township, Saline County, Missouri to see Celia and Rudolph Pulaski and their family, who had only recently moved there themselves. “We went for a visit,” Mary (Crockett) Casey, Edwin and Jessie’s fourth child recalled in 1953, “but stayed for ten years.” A contemporary source locates the Crockett farm “nine miles east of Marshall, on the Arrow Rock road.” The farm comprised, this source added, “…226 acres of very fine land” (Arrow Rock Township Biographies, p. 545). Edwin and Jessie’s eighth, and last, child, a son named William, was born in Saline County, Missouri on May 30th, 1882. Continue reading