William Roswell Osborne and Lula Jackson Osborne Family Page

by Tom Osborne (tlosborne@aol.com)

The pictures and text on these pages describe the growth of William and Lula's family over the years.  Most of us grandchildren always called them Mama and Grandaddy Osborne, so I'll refer to them that way.

Both Mama and Grandaddy were born and grew up in Johnson County, IL, near the town of Ozark on the edge of the Shawnee National Forest in southern IL.  Grandaddy listed his birthplace as "near Simpson, IL".  Grandaddy was born July 20, 1886, the second born of four brothers and three sisters, whose father was Thomas Green Osborne and mother was Sarah Ellen Vancleve Osborne.  Sarah died shortly after the birth of the youngest son, and several years later Thomas Green married Sara Ann Trigg and they had six more children.  For more information on his parents family, see the Thomas Green Osborne family pages.  Grandaddy was apparently named after his maternal grandfather, William Roswell Vancleve.  Through the Vancleve line, we are related to Cornelius "Commodore" Vanderbilt, the Bill Gates of the early 1800's (see the Geneology pages.).

Mama was born on November 24, 1888, the fifth born of four brothers and four sisters, whose father was James Richard Jackson and mother was Sarah Elizabeth Lay Jackson.  For more information on her parents family, see the James Richard Jackson family pages.

For many more family pictures, see the Photo Album page.


Mama and Grandaddy were married in Ozark, IL on February 7, 1909.  This copy of their marriage certificate shows that they were married in the brides home.  Grandaddy would have been 22 and Mama 20.

This is a copy of the wedding guest registry. The first guest is Elder S. McClure who performed the wedding ceremony.   Mr. and Mrs. T. G. Osborne are Grandaddy's father and stepmother, Sara Ann Trigg Osborne.  His own mother died when he was about 11.  Mrs. I. L. Jackson is Mama's sister-in-law Etta May Jackson, the wife of Ira Levi Jackson, Mama's oldest brother.  She would have been almost 24, so she and Mama were no doubt close friends.  Mr. and Mrs. J. B. May are Etta's parents, and Lowell May is possibly Etta's brother.  Miss Thelma Jackson is Etta's first daughter, about a year and a half old.  They are listed as being from Tyler, MO, and indeed, Etta and Ira's second daughter, Lucille, was born December 28, 1909 in Tyler, MO, only 10 days after Daddy was born in the same little village.  Maude, Guy, Madge, and Lillie Osborne are Grandaddy's brothers and sisters.   Master Howard C. Osborne is grandaddy's half brother, and only about 5 months old.  Roy Jackson is one of Mama's younger brothers.   It is surprising that Mama's parents aren't listed; perhaps since it was in their home, they didn't consider themselves to be guests.


This copy of the bridal gifts page I thought would be of interest to the ladies.

No one remembers exactly why Mama and Grandaddy moved to Tyler, MO.  However, I think that the fact that Ira and Etta lived there, and that Etta  was willing to travel, with her parents and young child, to the wedding may give a clue.  Probably they helped Grandaddy find a job, and they may have actually lived with them a while.  The reason I find Tyler, MO intriguing is that I remember Daddy taking us there one Sunday afternoon in the old '39 Ford, looking for the house where he was born.  It was a desolate area, and Tyler is nothing more than a crossroads buried in the trees.  The roads were only paved on one side; if you met another car, one would have to get off in the dirt.  I was probably about 8, just old enough to notice such things.  He never did find the house. This is a map showing Tyler (lower left corner) in the very southeastern most corner of MO, about 20 miles west of Dyersburg, TN


Mama and Grandaddy Osborne when Daddy was about one year old, which would have been 1910.  The picture was in a book "Moral Evil" originally "Presented to William Osborne by H.L.C., Carbondale, Ill." and given to me by Elizabeth.

 In 1911, after  Carl was born,  they they moved to Paducah to a house on Harrihan Boulevard where William R. Jr. "Bill" was born.  He was first employed by the West Kentucky Coal Company as a bookkeeper, and later became Chief Estimator for the Langstaff-Orm Lumber Company (At the time, the phone number for the lumber company was #26). In 1934 he purchased Roger Scott Lumber Company at Eighth and Clay  Streets in Paducah and renamed it the Osborne Lumber Company. (At the time, it's phone number was 327, which I remember clear as bell to this day!)  Through the flood of 1937, and through a fire in the mid '40s which destroyed much of the mill and office, it supported at least two families, and was a landmark on that corner.  It was run by Grandaddy and Carl until they retired in 1973, at which time it was bought by Nolan and Jane Harton and renamed The Lumberteria,  which it remains today.

But grandaddy wanted a place where he could have cows and chickens, so he bought this farm out on the Hinkleville Road and they moved there in about 1913.  In 1962, Mama died, but Grandaddy continued to live there by himself until about 1970 when he finally sold it and moved to Pepper Lane in Lone Oak, having lived in this house almost 60 years.

It is ironic that the property was eventually sold to a big lumber company which occupies the land now.  The lumber company is 84 Lumber Company, the largest privately owned retail building materials company in the U.S., with 396 stores, a hot air balloon, and a web site: www.84lumber.com.  I wonder what Grandaddy would say to that.

This is the front of Mama and Grandaddy's house on the Hinkleville Road, about 1965.

There were two doors that we used; this is the front door that went into a little "stoop", then to the right is the living room with the fireplance.  Both windows on either side of the chimney are in the living room.  Grandaddy's chair was in front of the window on the right.  To the right of that room behind the double windows was a sunroom and it had a baby grand piano that Jane played, and earlier had an old Victrola manual record player that played the origianl 78 rpm records.  The other door, the back door, was on the left side of the house on the back corner.  That went into a porch, then into the kitchen.  In the summer, we always sat in lawn chairs in this front yard and visited.. that is the grown-ups visited and us grandkids played tag or hide and seek or just explored around the house.  When I was very young, several of Mama and Grandaddy's children lived in and around Paducah, so they often came over on Sunday afternoons and all of us cousins got to play together.

This picture of Grandaddy's barn was taken in 1931, probably from the roof of the house.  The barn was down behind the house and the tool shed in the bottom of the picture was along the back of the back yard.  According to my Mother, they did have cows, but never any chickens.  The railroad ran just to the left of this picture, and about a mile away behind the trees was a small airport with a grass strip.  That's where I and my brother Bob got our first airplane ride in an open cockpit trainer in about 1944.  We could often see the biplanes and Piper cubs landing and taking off behind the trees  By the time I was old enough to remember, the barn was never used and land was overgrown, and we only went down to the barn a very few times.  But a walk down the railroad about a mile to a creek was a regular Sunday afternoon outing.

Go to:
Next page Page 1 Page 2 Page 3 Photo Album Home page