Decatur County Journal
Thursday, January l6, l9l9

January lst being the 50th anniversary of the marriage of J.H. MERRILL and wife, of north Leon, they, with their children and grandchildren celebrated the occasion. On January l, l869, occurred the wedding of J.H. MERRILL to GRACE H. MITCHELL, of Clinton, Illinois, in which state they lived until l896, moving from there to the Hamilton place at Kingston, now Delray, and later to the J.S. Ryan place north of town, after which they purchased the John Strong place, four miles south and one mile east of Van Wert at $22.50 per acre, which place they have owned until recently when they sold to George Redman for $ll0 per acre. They moved in November to Leon.

There were born to this union nine children, one being called in infancy to that better home. The other eight are still living. They are CORA DUVALL, Des Moines; LEW MERRILL, Leon; LENA COWLES, Des Moines; CLIVE MERRILL, Van Wert; NELLIE COFIELD, Des Moines; GERTIE HUNT, Siola; GRACE GARBER, Leon; and ELMER MERRILL, Leon.

All of the above were present at the celebration except LENA COWLES and ELMER MERRILL, who were both confined to bed on account of influenza. The grandchildren now number twenty-seven, two of whom are in the Army, namely; ROSCOE DUVALL, at Jackson, S.C., and LEO DUVALL, with the A.E.F., in France.

The day will be one long remembered; especially hard to forget will be the one great feature of the day, the noonday feast which was generously partaken of by all who were present. The day was quite cold. The nearby children went early to their homes wishing the happy couple many more happy years added to their lives. The children from away departed on Friday feeling amply repaid for their trip.

Copied April l3, 2002 by Nancee (McMurtrey) Siefert