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Mary J. Bowen Loafman – Fairmount Cemetery, Hodgeman, Kansas


Mrs. Loafman died of consumption at the age of 57. She was a widow who came to Hodgeman County with her daughters.


Mary Jane Bowen was born in Pennsylvania in 1837. She was orphaned as a little girl. Mary Jane became a teacher and taught at the Indian school in Tallahassee, Indian Territory (Florida).


She returned to Pennsylvania and married Elijah Loafman. He had served in Co. H 6th WV Infantry. He was discharged on June 23, 1862 and was found to be “uncapable of performing the duties of a soldier because of dislocation of ankle.”1 Like many others, Elijah had contracted a disease during his time in the war and is buried in Pennsylvania.


Mary Jane brought her two youngest daughters, Maggie and Delia, to Pawnee County to take a soldier’s claim. The April 11, 1884 issue of the Larned Chronoscope reported what must have been a terrifying experience. After retiring for the night, “the wind raised the roof off the sod house and set it over about a foot, leaving a crack of about six inches all round, through which the wind tore like a hurricane. Maggie and Delia Loafman took the clothes line, fastened it though the rafters and pulled the roof back on and tied it down, fixing it for the night at least.”2


In October, Mary Jane Loafman died at the age of 57. She is buried in Fairmount Cemetery. Maggie and Delia were both married and are buried in Larned Cemetery in Pawnee County, Kansas.


1Certificate of Disability for Discharge June 16, 1862

2The Larned Chronoscope 14 Nov 1884 p.3


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