Susan Sammons and Joel G Legrand Notes

(Daughter of Edmund Sammons)
Susan Sammons was born in Morgan County, Illinois about 1840.  She subsequently moved 
with her family to St. Mary's town in Hancock County, Illinois and then, in 1855, to
 Schuyler County, Missouri.  On 8 March, she married Joel Greenberry Legrand who 
subsequently served in the Civil War and applied for and received an invalid pension.  
In late 1872 or early 1873 the Legrand's moved to Wyandotte County, Kansas, probably 
in company with Henderson Legrand and his wife Mary, Susan's younger sister.  Joel 
died of typhoid fever on 7 January 1875 and Susan applied for a widow's pension, 
giving her address as Armstrong, Wyandotte County, Kansas.

     She then moved west to Rooks County, Kansas, probably in company with or joining 
her sister and brother-in-law and her brother Thomas there.  In January 1882, she 
was married to Reuben Pettijohn by Henderson Legrand who was a Justice of the Peace.  
They appear to have subsquently moved to Nebraska as they apparently were living in 
Harlan County, Nebraska in 1898.  At that time, her sister, Mary, who had been 
widowed in 1897, gave an affidavit confirming that Susan was the widow of Joel 
Legrand.  Mary was probably living with Reuben and Susan at the time.  The affidavit 
was witnessed by Reuben Pettijohn and William Legrand though no mention was made that 
Reuben was Susan's husband. William was probably Mary's son though this has not been 
absolutely established.  Reuben died in 1906 and, based on the 1910 census, Susan was 
living with her brother, Joseph Sammons, in Rooks County at the time of the census.  
She remarried again in 1912, this time to Samuel Wyatt in Topeka, Kansas.  According 
to an article in a Topeka paper of the same day as the wedding, they had been 
childhood friends in Schuyler County, Missouri; his wife had died not long before and 
Susan was living in Rooks County.  Interestingly, Samuel Wyatt and his wife, Rebecca, 
had been signatories to an affidavit in 1871 attesting to the dependence of Susan's 
mother, Mariah, on her late son, Gilbert, in support of her continuing need for her 
mother's pension.  It is not known where they lived immediately after the wedding but, 
according to an affidavit by (Thomas) Henry Legrand of Phillipsburg, Kansas, Samuel 
Wyatt died in Phillipsburg in 1920.  The affidavit supported her application for a 
widow's pension for Wyatt who had served in the 7th Iowa Cavalry.  Later 
correspondence from the Henry Legrande (sic) family in 1922 referred to her as "this 
poor old blind lady and she is at our house."  The final entry in the pension records 
lists her as having died 22 December 1922.
Joel Greenberry Legrand was born about 1831 in Allen County, Kentucky.  The family or 
at least part of it moved to Schuyler County, Missouri before 1855 when members of 
the Sammons family recalled getting acquainted with them.  Joel married Susan Sammons 
on 10 March 1857.

He enlisted, as did a number of people from Schuyler County, as a private in Company 
B of the 21st Regiment of Missouri Volunteers on 28 December 1861, along with his 
brother Henderson.   He reenlisted on 31 December 1863.  
In his claim for a disability pension he stated that during the battle of Shiloh he 
found he had contracted the mumps and then had been in the hottest part of the battle 
and then during the night had been exposed to 
cold and rain.  The result was complications from the mumps and contracting chronic 
diarrhea.   (Newton C. Sammons served in Co. I 21st Regiment Missouri Infantry.)

He was discharged in April 1855 and returned to Schuyler County where he apparently 
farmed on his mother-in-law's place which had been inherited by Gilbert and Devrix 
Sammons but with their mother's lifetime use.  He and his brother signed affidavit's 
for his mother-in-law, (Ann) Mariah Sammons, in her claim for a pension based on her 
dependency on her late son, Gilbert Sammons, who had also served in the 21st 
Regiment.  In 1872, a controversy arose over this pension with neighbors, Mariah's 
brother-in-law, George Sammons, and others, over whether her claim was fradulent, 
with allegations inter alia that the Legrand brothers had benefited from the pension.  
In a report back to Washington, a special agent claimed fraud and proposed charging 
Mariah and her two sons-in-law if the proceeds of the pension were not returned.

This threat of legal action may have been the reason the Legrand brothers moved in 
late 1872 or early 1873 to the Wyandotte County, Kansas area but there is no proof 
of that.  In any case, Joel filed for a disability pension from that location in 
March 1873.  He was approved for a pension.  However, he died of typhoid fever 
about 7 January 1875 in Wyandotte County.
The Legrand Brothers, probably accompanied by Thomas Sammons and a nephew, Warner 
Legrand, were the first to leave Schuyler Co MO to move west.  One can speculate 
that they left because of the threat of prosecution but there is no proof.  In any 
case, they appeared in the Wyandotte Co KS area as early as 1873.   Joel, however, 
did not survive long, dying in 1875 of typhoid fever.

Henderson, interestingly enough, became acquainted with a nearby neighbor, Joseph 
Combs, father of James Combs, who also moved west to Rooks County around 1878.  
There is no exact date for Henderson Legrand's move to Rooks County but he was 
cited in a later [Webster Eagle] article in 1887 as "[the first settler in western 
Rooks County in Alcona]".

Two more Sammons brothers followed the path to Rooks county not too long afterwards. 
Joseph and Devrix went probably in 1878.  From the wording in an affidavit written 
later by Devrix for Henderson Legrand's request for a pension it appears that he, 
and probably Joseph as well stayed with Henderson Legrand while they were getting 
settled.  They took out homestead claims in Richland Township not far from Legrand 
and close to one another. 

Susan Sammons married Joel Greenberry Legrand in 1857.  After he returned from the 
Civil War, they appear to have lived on the family farm with her mother.  Joel 
signed some affidavits testifying as to the merit of Mariah's claim for a dependent 
mother's pension.  He first applied for a invalid pension for himself in August 1872 
but it was not approved until 1876, after his death in 1875 of typhoid fever when 
living in Armstrong, Wyandotte Co., Kansas.  His widow, Susan, then applied for a 
widow's pension in 1877 while still living in Wyandotte County.  She noted that she 
had one child -- Mary Eliza Legrand -- under 16.  Her other child, a son, Thomas 
Henry Legrand (also known later as Henry) was not mentioned in her application as 
he was older.  The affidavit was witnessed by Warner Legrand.  A subsequent 
affidavit is also very significant.  It was made in Phillips County in December of 
the same year by Mary Jane Owings [Sammons] and Martha Owings, Thomas Sammons' wife 
and mother-in-law respectively.  The date of this affidavit further supports the 
conclusion that Thomas Sammons probably accompanied Henderson Legrand to Rooks 
County in 1877 making them the first of the family to arrive there.  Susan probably 
went to Rooks County with her brother-in-law, Henderson Legrand, Mary's husband.

Compiled by Charlotte Curlee Ramsey from notes submitted by William G. Stewart.

Charlotte Curlee Ramsey

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