Simmons Family
Jonathan Simmons
Dorothy Evelyn Bridgwater
Jonathan Simmons Family 1893
Left to right, Addie, Jonathan holding Lula,
Floyd behind Emily, Dorothy, and Vergie
Floyd, Jonathan
Lula, Vergie
Francis and Bill

Jonathan Simmons, who farmed most of his life but taught country school in his younger years, was born 12 March 1851 near London, Middlesex Co., Ontario, Canada, likely in Lobo Township where his father received a Crown Patent for 100 acres in 1854. Jonathan was a son of Erastus Simmons and Elizabeth Millard. He was living in Lobo Township near London when his father sold the family farm and immigrated to Missouri in the winter of 1867. The family settled in DeKalb County and made one crop before moving on to Saline County in the area around Sweet Springs. Jonathan was living in Salt Pond Township, Saline Co., Missouri in 1870. He married April 2, 1871, in Saline Co., Missouri, to Elizabeth Ann Jackman. She was born 24 August 1850 and died 13 June 1881, daughter of John and Sally Jackman. In 1880 they were living in Hogan Twp., Franklin Co., Arkansas, where Jonathan had purchased a farm in the late 1870s.

When Elizabeth died, all the children were still young. Willie, the second son, was in long dresses and was raised by his grandfather, Erastus Simmons, and "Old Maid" aunt, Emily Simmons, in Saline County, and by his step-mother, Eva, along with his half-brothers and half-sisters that followed. Willie was a fine young man. When he turned 21, grandfather Erastus gave him a horse and saddle. He worked for his father, Jonathan, that summer, and again in 1904 after his step-mother had passed away. He never seemed inclined to marry but did eventually in his mid to late forties. He was kind and gentle like his father. Jonathan Simmons had married on 4 April 1883 in Saline Co., Missouri, to Dorothy Evelyn Bridgwater. She was born 1 January 1857, Cooper Co., Missouri, daughter of a Confederate soldier, Matthew Coleman Bridgwater, and his wife, Martha Jane Harlow. Jonathan and his new bride headed for Kansas where they filed a claim and immediately went about improving their farm. On May 22, 1886, Jonathan was naturalized at Pawnee Co., Kansas. Eva was weakened by the hardships so common to pioneer life. By their eleventh anniversary, she had nine children, four dying before they reached their first year. She was not to see another decade. In 1900, Jonathan and Eva were living in Marshall, Saline Co., Missouri. They returned to Nashville, Kansas where Eva died of dropsy on March 9, 1903. She was 46 years of age. Jonathan stayed in Kansas only a few years more. In 1907 he and his son, Floyd, drove a team and wagon overland to the area around Gering, Scottsbluff Co., Nebraska. Jonathan's daughters, Vergie and Lula took a coach and joined him there where both daughters immediately married. Lula later removed to Wyoming. Jonathan, with Floyd and Vergie, and their families remained in Nebraska the rest of their lives. By 1910 they were settled in at , and by 1920 at . Jonathan died at Harrisburg, Scottsbluff Co., Nebraska, on 14 November 1932. Burial was in Westlawn Cemetery at Gering on November 16th.

Jonathan Simmons and Elizabeth Ann Jackman had the following children:

1. John Erastus Simmons [1872
2. Mary Ellen Simmons [1874-1875]
3. Sally Jane Simmons [1876-1901] m. Charles Crowder
4. Charles William Simmons [1878-1946] m. Daisy
5. George Elery Simmons [1881-1881]

Jonathan Simmons and Dorothy Evelyn Bridgwater had the following children:

1. Floyd Benjamin Simmons [Jan. 5, 1884-1928] m. Pearl Effie Reed
2. Addie Francis Simmons [July 2, 1885-June 1980] m. Charles Leavitt Moomau
3. Clayton Hugh Simmons [1887-1887]
4. Emily Susan Simmons [Feb. 26, 1888-May 20, 1922] m. Victor Eugene Sleeper
5. Vergie Violine Simmons [Sept. 18, 1889-Apr. 14, 1949] m. Harry William Thompson
6. Kattie Simmons [1890-1890]
7. Roy Fredrick Simmons [1892-1892]
8. Lula May Simmons [July 16, 1893-June 5, 1950] m. 1) Etham Richmond Lynch, 2) Alvin Henry Kissick, 3) John Emil Judson Barnum
9. Richard Chester Simmons [1895-1896]

Source Records:

Family pages [only] from Jonathan Simmons Family Bible, in possession of Vern Paul, Dublin, Ireland, gifted by Addie (Simmons) Moomau. Jonathan carried the pages, and his naturalization document, folded up in his wallet most of his life.
1851 Census, Lobo Twp., Middlesex Co., Ontario, Canada
Jonathan living with parents.
1861 Census, Lobo Twp., Middlesex Co., Ontario, Canada
Jonathan living with parents.
1870 Census, Co., Missouri, p.
Jonathan living with parents.
1880 Census, Co., Missouri, p.
1900 Census, Co., Missouri, e. d. , sheet , p.
1910 Census, Lowell Precinct, Sioux Co., Nebraska, e.d. 228, sheet 2A, p. 226
1920 Census
1930 Census
Saline Co., Missouri, Marriage Records, Book C, p. 297 [Jonathan and Jackman]
Naturalization Records, Finney County, Kansas, 1885-1979. Garden City, KS: Embree, 1986, p. 15 [I am not sure why there is a reference to Jonathan's naturalization in Finney County. I have the original naturalization document [gifted by Addie (Simmons) Moomau] stating he was naturalized May 22, 1886, in Pawnee Co., Kansas.]
Homestead Documents
Bridgeport News-Blade, Bridgeport, Morrill Co., Nebraska, Nov. 17, 1932, p. 1, col. 5 [Jonathan Simmons Death Notice]