The Fay Family: Genealogies: Donna Madora Fay Taylor Harvey

Donna Madora Fay Taylor Harvey
Biographies, Maps and Census Evidence
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Donna Madora Fay was born July 23, 1854, in Wisconsin, her parents were Albert and Cynthia (Hansen) Fay, who had recently moved here from Canada. (One record we find her birth year as 1847 and another as 1854). I believe the 1854 date to be correct since the Fay Family in general moved to Wisconsin in 1853.
On the census record of 1860, from Trenton in Dodge County, WI, taken July 31st, Madora D. is 7 years old. That would indicate a birth in 1853/54.
In 1870, taken on the 25th day of August, in Carlston, Freeborn, MN, she is 16. Obviously, then, these two records don't agree, but both support Floy's belief that 1854 is more likely to be correct. The 1880 also agrees.
Elish Cox (Lash) Taylor was born January 14, 1848 in New York State and moved with his family to Wisconsin in about 1855.
On April 28, 1872 Elisha (Lash) Taylor and Donna Fay were married in Wisconsin. Three children were born to this family, Albert Lucerne [1874], Ernest Cecil [1876] and Martha May (Mattie) [1877].
We do not know where they lived between 1872 and 1879 when they moved to Kent, Nebraska, taking a homestead and building a sod house, one-fourth mile east of Kent Corner. By 1880, they are established in Nebraska.
Census Place:	Unorganized Territory, Unorganized Territory, Nebraska
Source:	FHL Film 1254757  National Archives Film T9-0757  Page 577A     
	Relation	Sex	Marr	Race	Age	Birthplace
E. C. TAYLOR	Self	M	M	W	33	IN
	Occ:	Farmer	Fa: NY	Mo: GER
Donna TAYLOR	Wife	F	M	W	25	WI
	Occ:	Keeping House	Fa: CAN	Mo: CAN
Albert L. TAYLOR Son	M	S	W	6	MN
			Fa: IN	Mo: WI
Ernie C. TAYLOR	Son	M	S	W	4	MN
			Fa: IN	Mo: WI
Martha TAYLOR	Dau	F	S	W	2	MN
			Fa: IN	Mo: WI
Moses FAY	Other	M	M	W	45	CAN
	Occ:	Farmer	Fa: CAN	Mo: CAN
The Moses who is living with them is Donna's uncle, the brother of Albert and son of Alvah. The rest of Moses' family is living in Dunbar, Faribault, Minnesota: Eunice, Martha, and Clarence are staying with daughter Lydia Fay Stearns.
Donna like most pioneer ladies helped her neighbors where ever needed in time of illness or accident.
Lash died November 22, 1880, and he is buried at the Kent Cemetery.
In December of 1881 Donna M. Taylor married Benjamin J. Harvey, a recently widowed neighbor with 8 children. They lived in the sod house on this homestead until Ben's death on March 9, 1920, at the age of 84 years. She had finished proving up on this acreage after Lash's death.
Donna and Benjamin Harvey had two children, Frank and Catherine. They are living in Nebraska in 1900. Note that Frank is recorded as Frederick: perhaps a middle name?
These pioneer people lived through very hard times, when there was a shortage of both money and supplies, and Donna being a very hard working woman, gathered milk pails of wild fruit from the canyons, day after day, carrying them home at night, and preparing them for winter food for her large family, so as to be ready to go out the next morning to do the same thing over again. Since ladies wore long heavy skirts in those days, she would be wet with dew, every morning and then would work in those wet clothes, many times all day. It was thought this might have been an aggrevation to her arthritic condition, over such a long period of time, causing her crippling in later years.
Donna was confined to a wheelchair for years due to rheumatism, but she continued to do her housework from her wheelchair even cooking for threshers, with a little aid from a neighbor lady.
She baked all her own bread baking it in a stove pipe oven above her topsy stove.--All the kids in the community could vouch she made the best apple turnovers ever.
After her husband's death she went to live with her daughter Kate Enous at Kirby, Montana and died there March 30, 1924, at the age of 76 years. She is buried on the home ranch at Kirby, Montana.