Cynthia Anne Woodward Monk
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Cynthia Anne Woodward Page

Cynthia Ann Woodward was the daughter of William Riley and Phoebe Johnson Woodward .

She was born in Nebraska, probably Kearney County, graduated from Minden High School in 1899, and taught at the Elm Creek School. Family lore has one of her students as Harold Warp - founder of Minden's Pioneer Village.
The Kearney County museum has school records indicating she taught at the Newark school in 1905, 1906, and 1907.

In June 1907 she moved to the west 1/4 of Sec 7, 3n 46w (about fifteen miles northeast of Yuma, Colorado. She established residency there in January 1908. In December 1908 she certified that she had 7 acres under cultivation in 1908. She said she had built October 15, 1907 a 10' by 14' frame house with shingle roof and stovepipe chimney, good matched floor, one outside door, and two windows. Her barn was 8' by 10' frame, and the buggy shed was 7' by 10'. The cistern had a 10-barrel capacity. She had 80 acres under a good 2-wire fence. Total valuation was $275.

One of the witnesses was Albert Monk, age 23, son of George P. and Mary Sides Monk. whom she married June 30, 1909. Another witness was Lizzie Carper, age 42 (Cynthia's brother married Lizzie's daughter). .


Albert had filed in July 1907 for two quarters in 4n 46w, about six miles north, and first settled on it January 1908. One witness for his October 1913 'proving up' was Frank Woodward, his brother-in-law at that time. Frank said he had known Albert for ten years, so they had known each other in Kearney County, Nebraska.

Albert said that in 1908 he cultivated 28 acres, raising 600 bushels of corn and 23 tons of cane.
In 1909 he had 65 acres, raising 600 bushel of corn, 14 tons of cane, and 35 bushel of potatoes.
In 1910 he had 113 acres, raising 1400 bushel of corn, 12 tons of cane, and 65 bushel of potatoes. He had planted wheat, but didn't list any production.
In 1911 his 113 acres raised 250 bushel of corn, 3 tons of cane, and 4 bushel of potatoes. His production didn't include wheat.
1912 was better, with 375 bushel of corn, 1000 bushel of wheat, 280 bushel of oats, and 32 tons of millet. He had planted potatoes, but didn't list production.
In 1913 he had planted corn, oats, and potatoes. The 113 acres cultivated were: 90 acres in the north part of the Sec 9 quarter, and 23 acres in the se part of the Sec 4 quarter. The "improvements" were in the Sec 4 quarter. They were a habitable frame house, 14' by 28', with a shingle roof, lathed and plastered. It had a 10' by 12' addition, also lathed and plastered, with a rubberoid roof.
The frame barn was 14' by 28', with a board roof. One grainery was 10' by 18', with a shingle roof, another 8' by 10', with a board roof. The chicken house was 10' by 14', with a board roof. One hog shed was 10' by 16', another 6' by 10'. The hog lot was fenced with woven wire, measuring 4 by 10 rods. Albert had a well, wind mill, and cistern. He also had a cave [a root cellar]. All the land was fenced and cross-fenced with 2 wires. He estimated the improvement value at $1,100.

Witnesses were Laymon R. Marshall, Frank F. Rowe, Frank M. Woodward, and Micheal L. Weekly, all of Yuma.

Her brother "Frank" and his wife Alice homesteaded near there, and her younger sister Ruby moved to the town of Yuma. Her mother moved to Yuma, living with Ruby for a while before her death.

Their children were:
Zella Merle Monk - married Charles Piper
Beulah Monk - married Doyle E. Neiman
Dallas Albert (Bert) Monk - married Jennie Kathryn Oman, daughter of
Olaf and Hulda Oman
Phoebe Monk - married Carroll Josh
Gilbert Dale Monk - married Elsie Mosher
William Woodward Monk - married Arliss Shaffer
The Yuma Pioneer of November 6, 1919, reported
Mrs. Mary Keenan came in from San Diego, California, Monday afternoon to visit her sister, Mrs. Albert Monk. Mrs. Monk has been very sick, and for a time it was feared she would not recover, but is now reported to be practically out of danger.

C. H. Woodward, who had been visiting with his sister, Mrs Albert Monk, and mother, Mrs. Jennie Woodward, and other relatives, left for his home at Archer, Nebraska, Monday afternoon.

July 14, 1921 “Mr. and Mrs. Albert Monk took their little son Billy to Denver Saturday in hopes of securing benefit for his eyes. Pearl Johnston stayed with the other children during their absence.”

1923 Albert Monk erected a new windmill tower last week. He was assisted by L.R. Marshal, Arch Josh, and the latter’s brother George.

February 26, 1925 “ Last Friday Albert Monk and L.R. Marshall drove to Newark, Nebraska to attend the funeral of George Monk, which was held on February 17. They returned Saturday.”

April 30, 1925 “William Woodward of Newark Nebraska was visiting at the home of his sister Mrs. Albert Monk Sunday.

"Bert", Zella, Phoebe
Beulah, Albert, "Billy", "Anna", "Dale"

All were supporters, if not members, of the
Pleasant Valley Church. We all have memories of Grandma Monk, but probably none of us remembers Grandpa.

Beulah said he loved to eat corn, and hated casseroles. He would say “if you’re going to eat peas, then eat peas.”
He wore overalls most of the time, and always underwear. He had one set of winter underwear, and one for summer. He would wash off in the tank, not bathing in the house.
He didn’t play many games, like cards or board games, but liked baseball. He was usually the catcher or umpire at games.
He liked to sing, with a good bass voice, when Zella or Grandma played the organ.
He would usually bring chocolate candy home from town for Grandma. Beulah said Grandma and Grandpa never showed any affection in front of anyone.
The most enjoyable times for Beulah were planning for Christmas or for Sunday dinner guests. At Christmas Grandpa would give each of the six children a dollar, and that was to be used for seven presents.
Their first car was when Beulah was five/six years old. Her most vivid memory of it was the snap-on side curtains.

He died when Naomi was six months old, but “was a good Grandpa”.
The story is that Beulah was named after one of his girl friends, and Phoebe after Grandma’s mother. Beulah said that Grandpa preferred to call Phoebe “sister.”
Beulah also told Judy that Grandpa never changed a diaper or was allowed in the room when it was being done. Not only did they not show affection to each other, they showed little to their children. It wasn't that they didn't care for them, but their Quaker background. They never played any game with face cards as that would be sinful. They never were allowed to dance.
Grandma NEVER took a bath or a shower. She washed off with a wash cloth and a bowl of soap & water. The children were never allowed to see her unless she was fully dressed.
Grandpa smoked in the barn or outside. They found heart medication in the barn after he died. He never told anyone that he had a heart problem.

Grandpa and Grandma slept in the kitchen in a pull out bed. The boys slept in a bunk room or out building most of the time and the three sisters slept crossways on one bed.

The children were close, with the three daughters marrying within nine months, and continued that closeness. For example, in 1943 Charles and Zella were living in Paoli (about twenty miles north) with children Lowell and Phyllis. Charles was teaching in the Paoli school. When June was being born in June 1943, "Bert" had just married Jennie. (Phoebe was the matchmaker here, with Bert meeting Jennie in January and presenting a diamond on Valentine's Day). While Jennie's father was moving a house from Vernon for Bert and Jennie, they lived in Cynthia's three-room house. Lowell and Phyllis stayed with Bert and Jennie. Phyllis probably doesn't remember, but she accompanied new aunt Jennie everywhere, especially on trips to the cistern to get water for the house.

1990's Christmas gathering
Jennie, Dollie (Penton) (Yenter) Monk, Dale
Carroll and Phoebe Josh, Leah (Tuell) Piper and Charles.
We lost Dale in 2001, Phoebe in 2002, Beulah in 2010, Jennie in 2011, Arliss in 2013, so now have only Dollie (Penton) (Yenter) Monk from that generation.
June has provided three
letters that Cynthia wrote to her oldest daughter Zella in the mid-1950's. They reflect her interests and her love for her children and grandchildren.

There were twenty grandchildren, of which I am one (Bert and Jennie 's son).

Here is Cynthia about 1950.