Harry Jessee Jessee-McDannald Home--> -->Harry Jessee


Benjamin Harrison "Harry" Jessee
Apr 21, 1894 (Downs, Ks.) - Jul 14, 1950 (Lynnwood, Calif.)

Master operating engineer



            | Archibald Jessee
  Paulyne--- |   | Abraham L Jessee --------------|    1850-1911
     1914-1995 |   |    1868-1938 | Mary Ann Purcell
    | Harry Jessee --------------|        1833-1873
  Warren--- |    1894-1950 |   | Augustus Wildey
     1917-1998 | | | Odie Wildey --------------|    1836-1931
    | |      1877-1958 | Mary Jane Roberts
     Harold---- |-------- -----------|          1833-1906
        1918-2000 | |     | John Tho. McDannald
    | | | David W McDannald --------------|    1817-1890
  Keith---- | | |    1851-1926 | Margaret Cull
     1920-1974 | Gladys McDannald --------------|        1817-1887
    |    1892-1967 |   | Samuel Reeves
  Rexene---- |   | Lucetta Reeves --------------|    1827-1899
     1922-          1859-1931 | Lydia Cleminson
                 1836-1925


Note: The complete Jessee history is at the website www.jessee.org put together by Jim Jessee.



Harry Jessee and Gladys McDannald Jessee - 1914



Odie Wildey and Linc Jessee were married on July 3, 1893 in Gaylord, Kansas. On April 6, 1894, their first child, Benjamin Harrison Jessee was born in Downs, Kansas.

In the U.S. Census of 1900, in the Downs township, Osborne County, Kansas, Abraham Lincoln Jessee was listed as 32 years old, an "employee in RR Roundhouse". Odie Jessee was 25, married 7 years, with 3 children, Benj. Harrison, 6 years old, Ethel 4, and Clarence 1 year old.

Very soon after this, Linc and Odie's family moved from Kansas to Santa Ana, Calif. to be with many other family members who had moved to southern california. This was where Harry grew up.

In the 1910 U.S. Census for Westminster, Orange County, California, Abraham L Jessee was listed, 42 years old, occupation, bean farmer.
His wife was "Della", 31, married 17 years, with 7 children.
Harry was 16, out of school, listed as "farm labor".
The other children are Ethel, Clarence, Helen, Edyth, Doris, and Glen.

Three years later, Harry Jessee, 19, & Gladys McDannald, 21, will marry on Dec 23, 1913. Their first child, Paulyne Irma, was born on June 10, 1914, in Santa Ana, Calif.



Their second child, Donald Warren, was born January 28, 1917, in Santa Ana.

On his June 5, 1917 Draft Record, Harry Benjamin Jessee, will list his address as Stockton RFD 5 Box 38 Calif. His Occupation was listed as 'farming' and his employer "Union Island". He will claim Exemption from draft because of "dependent children".











Harry and Gladys and family bean farming in Stockton, 1918

Harold Edgar was born Dec. 24, 1918
















In the U.S. Census for 1920, for Huntington Beach, Orange Co, Calif. Harry Jessee was listed as 25 years old, occupation "engineer steam dredger"
Gladys was 27, and the children are Paulene (5), Warran (2) Harold(1).

Loren Keith was born Nov. 7, 1920.

Linnie Rexene was born Oct. 17, 1922.

Harry would have many jobs as a heavy equipment operator over the next 30 years. It was said that he was so skilled at operating a steam shovel, he could pick up a dollar bill with the shovel.



Memories of her father, Paulyne Jessee Mayes :

"Benjamin Harrison Jessee was a quiet but stern man; we all knew that when he rendered a decision, that was final. No arguing or discussion, like kids are permitted to do nowadays. But he was fair, although at times we have felt he wasn't. He had a quiet sense of humor that we saw when he'd had a drink or two, never vulgar or mean and I never saw him drunk. He told funny little stories, sometimes about things that happened on his job, or recalling family mishaps, but always funny.

Dad was an avid fisherman. Mama would often have a picnic fixed when he got home from work, and we'd all pile in the car and to go Newport Beach. We'd build a beach fire, cook our hot dogs and Dad would surf fish until maybe 1 or 2 a.m. in the morning. We kids would give up, wrap up in a blanket and go to sleep until he'd had his fill of fishing. Then we'd pile back in the car and go home where he'd grab a couple of hours of sleep, put on his work clothes and go to work for two or three days, then do it all over again.



He also like to go deer hunting with his friends, usually to a small town in central California, Little Lake, where there were several packers. They would hire a packer to take them into the foothills by horseback, help them set up camp, and then go away leaving them for two weeks with the promise to come back and haul them and their deer out.



Dad worked as a steam-shovel operator. But he had been a bean farmer before that during WWI, so was exempt from Army duty. His father, Abraham Lincoln Jessee, had been a shovel operator before him, so he followed as did two of my brothers, Harold and Keith. He worked on several big construction jobs: Boulder (Hoover) Dam, California Highway 1 north of Cambria Pines to Monterey, David Dam on the Colorado River, and the All-American Canal in Imperial County. So he was gone a lot of the times in the years I can remember.

I really got closer to my dad after I got married, he was so fond of my husband Fred, and we saw more of him then. During his final years he worked as a crane operator for the County of Los Angeles on breakwater walls. He had to work at low tide so at times went to work very early in the morning or late at night. He died in July 1950 at the age of 56 of a heart attack."


Harry with some of his children and their spouses.
Hazel, Rexene, Harold, Harry, Viviann, Keith, Chuck, Warren, and Doris.





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