Note: What follows is the fifth and final installment of a fairly lengthy
memoir written during February of 1923 by Ellen (Berry) Badger, who emigrated
with her family from Indiana to Lucas County, Iowa, during 1853.
Isaac was a busy man all winter. He next built a log out-house and joined
it to the southwest corner of the cabin. This broke the west and southwest
wind out of our south door. This house made a cool place to keep things that
it was too warm for in the cabin.
Isaac always took his gun with him when going any distance and we were
seldom without fresh game of some kind, such as prairie chicken,
rabbit, wild turkey, and deer. And many were the dried venison hams we had
for summer use. He got a well dug. He would go to the timber and work all
day making rails, and at night bring home a load of wood. He made rails enough
to fence 16 acres, and was breaking sod as soon as the frost got out of the
ground. We raised quite a crop of sod corn and a lot of vegetables.
We were now about 5 miles from Chariton, and it was open prairie on one side
or the other of the road all the way, no lane. Newbern was about 5 miles away. It was
here in that early day, and has not grown much since, as it has never had
a railroad (still hasn't. FDM). Isaac bought Uncle Renne's place where we lived
first summer. We lived here 5 years. While here Uncle Renne and Isaac both
died. After Isaac's death, sister Lou, 4 children, Renne, John, Stephen and Cora, and
myself moved to the southeast part of Chariton. Here we lived three years.
(Note: According to Lucas County cemetery records, Isaac Julien died 21 January
1865, age 36 years, 4 months and 29 days. His wife, Lucretia (Berry) Julien,
born 1 February 1832, died 20 September 1890. They are buried in the Chariton
Cemetery on the same lot with Uncle Renne and three children, in addition to
the child who died during 1854: Sarah E., died 30 March 1862, age 2 years;
Mary Ellen, died 31 March 1862, age 2 years; and Stephen, died 20 January 1883,
age 21. FDM)
On December 25th, 1866, I was married to Samuel Badger. He had served
3 years in the Civil War. His parents had come from Grant County, Indiana,
near the Wabash River, in the fall of 1850 and settled about two miles southeast
of Chariton, where they lived the remainder of their lifetime. There were
eleven children that grew to manhood and womanhood. This is now 1923 and
Samuel and I have passed our 56th wedding anniversary, and Lucas County has
always been our home.
The old log court house served for school until there was a school house built.
I can't remember one was built in town. About 1857 a log school house was built,
3 miles west of town and here we had church services and Sunday School.
Services were often held in the homes in the country and we would walk, or go
horse back, or ride in heavy lumber wagons often drawn by oxen. We didn't
stay away because our clothes didn't happen to be in the latest style. We had
no choir to do the singing, no piano, or organ. Our leader sometimes had a
tuning fork, and we sang with the spirit of worship such hymns as "Children
of the Heavenly King," "How Happy Are They Who Their Savior Obey," and
"How Firm a Foundation." And we could then understand the words they were
We bore many hardships in the pioneer days, but we also had our joys and I
believe had more enjoyment in life than the people of today. We didn't expect
much and thanked the Lord for what we did have. It is now seventy years since
our moving party left Indiana. I am now past 82 years and I am the only one living
of the ones that came to Lucas County. I have three brothers living yet in Indiana,
brother George, 85 years, John coming 73, and Frances, 70.
Brothers William and Frances and their famlies lived in Chariton, for a short time,
but afterwards returned to Indiana. James and Susannah moved to Osceola,
Clarke County, which was their home the remainder of their lives. James
enlisted as a Union soldier, and died at St. Louis. Their son, Joe, was the
late J.C. Mitchell, lawyer, so well known in Lucas County and Ottumwa.
I have written this from memory, as I could recall it, and trust it may be of some
value as a memoir for the younger generations of this immigrating party.
(Note: Samuel Badger died during 1924. Ellen lived for 11 more years,
dying during 1934. Both are buried in the Chariton Cemetery. FDM)