A little family history…

By Dorothy Weinberger

Hope everyone reads Dvonne Hansen’s column each week. In the April 28 issue of the Sanborn Weekly Journal, she wrote about the Hughs and Ashton families. She asked if anyone knows of relatives, so I immediately called her. In the next week’s column, she has included the information I gave her. Everything was correct, Dvonne. Charles and Ann Ashton and their eight children all moved from Wales to northern New York State, settling in Utica and Rome, N.Y., which was in Oneida County in the 1840s.
Hearing about land available in South Dakota, Charles and Ann and seven of their grown children, some with families, moved to homesteads northwest of Artesian to what is now Oneida Township. (Yes, named after Oneida County, N.Y.) They filed homestead papers on all of section 13, the east half of section 14, and all of section 24. My grandparents, Mary (Ashton) and John Edwards, took over the homestead of Charles and Ann in 1883. They built a new nine-room house in 1910 (where I was born in 1923.) John and Mary had two sons, Leroi and Andrew. Andrew, as a young man, married Anna Mauer, and they moved to the Harmony Hall area, where Dewayne and Margo Edwards and son, Greg, live now.
My mother’s family came from Norway to Grinnell, Iowa, later coming to Benedict and Oneida Townships in 1883 and 1885. My grandparents, Andrew and Tonetta Figland, took over the homestead of Noble, who had come with the Ashtons from New York. Their land was the north half of section 23 in Oneida Township. They had nine children, including my mother, Anna Theodora, who married my father, Leroi Edwards, on March 14, 1922. They took over the farm of my grandparents, John and Mary Edwards. I was born April 27, 1923.
Later, they acquired the land in section 13, which my family still owns, including my son, Donald Weinberger and my daughter, Lois (Weinberger) Liedtke. A number of the Ashton family moved on to Boulder, Colo. My grandfather, John Edwards, chose the name  Redstone Valley Farm for the land. It is now known as the Redstone Valley Bison Ranch. All the families had built their home on the banks of the Redstone Creek. My roots are very deep in that area.

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