On the Satterlee surname forum about a year ago, Jim Hazelton was asking for information about his great-grandmother, Mary Olive Satterlee, who was married at Wiota in 1876. Goldie Satterlee Moffatt Fowler did a great deal of Satterlee genealogy research from the 1960's through the 1990's. Mary Olive did not appear in Goldie's work, although Goldie did have a Satterlee family (William Irving and Mary Ann (Nobles) Satterlee) who settled at Monroe, in neighboring Green County, around 1840.
Last week I went to the beautifully preserved 1905 courthouse in Darlington and did some research. I not only found Mary Olive, I also found two of her sisters who are not in Goldie's book either. Alas, though, I didn't resolve the question of their parentage, as I will explain.
In 1998 volunteers indexed all of the birth, death, and marriage records in Lafayette County. Marriage records are indexed by bride's name, groom's name, and by the names of the parents of the bride and groom. The indices direct you to the book and page in which the original record exists, and the record books themselves are right around the corner in the vault. Once you know what you are looking for, you can go right to it. It's a wonderful system.
The marriage of William N. Haselton (sic) and Mary Olive Satterlee is recorded in Book 4, p. 78, Line 59. The date of the ceremony is Oct. 24, 1876. The groom's occupation is insurance agent. His residence is Wiota. His birthplace is Norway. The marriage was performed at Gratiot, Lafayette County, by John Tiernan, Roman Catholic pastor, who resided at Gratiot. Witnesses were Michael Boyle and Margaret J. Shannon. The groom's parents are O. J. Haselton (sic) and Margaret Nielsen. The bride's parents are John Nelson Setterly (sic) and Catharine Nicholson.
I also found the marriage of Abiel, d/o "Nelson Satterly" and "Kate Satterly," to Edgar Miller on August 14, 1872 (Book 4, p. 42, Line 88), and the marriage of Ann, d/o John Nelson Satterlee and Catharine Nicholson, to Leonard Walrack on May 4, 1894 (Vol. 5, p. 391, Line 68).
Neither John Nelson Satterlee's nor Catherine Nicholson Satterlee's death is recorded in Lafayette County, but I also got a list of probate files, and both their estates were probated there. I went up to the county clerk's office on the third floor of this beautiful 1805 courthouse, gave them the file numbers, and they brought me the files immediately. He is just Nelson Satterlee in the estate file, but there is no question it is the same person. Nelson Satterlee died on February 24, 1891 at Wiota. He died possessed of real property in Lafayette County, consisting of the SW 1/4 of the NE 1/4 of Sec. 12, Twp. 2, Range 4E, and the SE 1/4 of the NE 1/4, same section, township and range, with a total value of $1,800. (The plat maps are available in the office and if you wanted to, you could find the farm on the plat map and go right to it.)
Nelson Satterlee left his widow, Catharine, and six children: Abby Miller, daughter, Edgewood, Clayton Co., Iowa; Mary Hazelton, daughter, Blanchardsville, Lafayette Co., Wis.; Anna Satterlee, daughter, and sons Thomas, James, and John Satterlee. Thomas, James and John were aged 20, 17 and 13 at the time of Nelson's death. Nelson's will (leaving his estate to his widow) was signed on December 19. 1890 and was signed with a mark. My first thought was that Nelson was illiterate, but perhaps he was paralyzed by a stroke and unable to write his name when the will was made.
Catherine (sic) Satterlee died in December 1916 at Blanchardsville, Lafayette Co., Wis. She died possessed of real property consisting of the south 1/2 of Lots 2 and 11, Block 1, original plat, village of Blanchardsville, with a value of $2,000. (You could look that up on the plat map too. Maybe the house is still there.)
Catherine's heirs are shown as Abbie Orcutt, Mary Hazeltine (sic), Thomas, James (residing in Rockford, IL, he was the executor) and John. Anna Walrack died 12/23/1917, before the probate of her mother's estate closed, leaving her husband, Leonard Walrack, and a daughter, Olive Walrack, who was mentally incompetent.
Goldie had Thomas, James and John as sons of Nelson L. Satterlee, who was the s/o William Irving Satterlee and Mary Ann Nobles. She didn't have the three girls at all. There is no question in my mind that all six were the children of John Nelson Satterlee and Catherine Nicholson (who Goldie shows as the wife of Nelson L.), but I am not at all sure that Nelson L., s/o William Irving, is the John Nelson who was married to Catherine Nicholson. Goldie has census records from Green Co., WIs in 1850 and in Boone Co., IA in 1870 and 1880. In Green Co., in 1850, William Irving and Mary Ann Satterlee are shown with 6 children, of whom Nelson L. is the second youngest, age 5. So he was surely born in 1844 or 1845. He is shown as having been born in Wisconsin. By 1870 William Irving had moved his family to Boone Co., Iowa, and Nelson L. is shown in the census as living with his parents, age 26, employed as an engineer at a grist mill. In 1880 he is STILL living with his mother in Iowa, age 36. Also, Nelson L. is really too young to be the father of Abiel and Mary Olive, the two oldest girls. They were married in 1872 and 1876, and if we presume each of them was at least 18yo at marriage, they would have been b. c. 1854 and 1858 (I believe you had a birth date of 1857 for Mary Olive, which would be about right). But Nelson L. Satterlee was only 10 or 11 years old in 1854!
So I don't think Nelson L. is the husband of Catherine Nicholson or the father of Mary Olive and her brothers and sisters, and I can't find anybody else in Goldie's records that would fit. 'Tis a mystery!
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