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A Family Affair – Belpre Cemetery, Edwards County, Kansas

The two sons of David and Mary Gibson, Robert and William, were both born in Scotland and took a different path in settling in Kansas.

William’s path to Kansas was typical of most immigrants. At the age of 19, he traveled with his nephew, David (oldest son of Robert), and landed in New York in 1851. Two years later, Martha Goodwin became his wife. All their children were born in Indiana and that is where Martha passed away in 1871. Her body was sent back to England where she could be buried with family.

The following year, William married Mary C. Flood. Three more children were added to the family. In 1884, they all moved to Hutchinson, Reno County, Kansas where William opened a general store. Failing health precipitated his move to Belpre Twp., Edwards County in 1886.

Robert was born in 1827. He studied for the Presbyterian ministry and moved to Ireland where he learned the cabinet-making trade.

While living in Ireland, Robert married Mary Ann Atwell on July 20, 1860. They were the parents of 11 children all born in Ireland. Robert came to America in August of 1883. The following year he moved to Edwards County and settled in Wayne Twp., Edwards County.

After establishing himself and readying a home, Robert had Mary Ann bring the four youngest children to their new home in 1887. Around that same time, William’s wife, Mary, and the children staked a claim in Edwards County.

Robert died in 1896 at the age of 68. His wife, Mary Ann, contracted pneumonia and passed away in 1919. They are both buried in the Belpre Cemetery. William died in 1894 and is buried in Hutchinson Eastside Cemetery in Reno County. His second wife, Mary Flood Gibson, remarried Isaac Sprigg in 1896. Mary Flood Gibson Sprigg passed away in 1939 and is buried in Wayne Cemetery in Lewis, Edwards County, Kansas.

Note: The Kinsley-Edwards County Centennial pgs. 294-295 was instrumental in writing this story. If you would like to read more, the book can be found at the Kinsley Library.

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