The Overley Family

's of

Cowley County Kansas

Belle Lemaster Overley

Narcis Velry "Belle" Lemaster was the oldest of nine children of Eli and Millia (Wilson) Lemaster. She was born Oct. 3, 1954 in Tyler County, West Virginia. Four brothers and one sister died in infancy or childhood. She had three living brothers, Seamon, Stephen A., and Septimus.

The name Le Maistre or La Maistre is French and means "The Masters." The English version is Lemaster, LeMaster, LaMaster, LeeMaster, Leamaster. In America our first record to connect to our line is Abraham Lemaster, about 1639-1722, probably born in France and later settled in western edge of St. Mary's County, Maryland. Abraham's son, Richard was born 1670 and died after 1735. This seems to be the ancestors of about 90% of the Lemasters in America since then, regardless of how they spell their name. These are the generations since Richard: Joseph born 1693; Isaac, 1728; Thomas Sr., 1760; Septimus (Stephen) 1800-1878. Many land deeds show Septimus Lemaster in Monongalia, Marion and Tyler counties in West Virginia.

Eli, Septimus' son, brought his family in a covered wagon to LeRoy, Kansas in 1867. Grandmother Belle, the oldest child said she helped lead the cow to keep up with the wagon. She was twelve when they started, and was 13 before they arrived. In 1871 they moved to Sumner County and homesteaded on a farm on the Ninnescah River near Whitman.

She was married 4/27/1875 to John A. Wilkinson. They had one son, Oria, 4 1/2 months old, when John drowned in flood waters of the Ninnescah. She married 11/13/1879 Sanford Clark Overley. They lived on his farm across the river and raised their eight children there. The account of their children and those living in Cowley County is in the "Sanford Clark Overley" story.

Her brothers moved to Clinton and Cordell, and Eddy Oklahoma communities. Seaman "Uncle Sec" 4/11/61-3/9/1962 retired and moved back to Winfield. Durilla Lemaster, single daughter, cared for him in his home until he died at the age of 100. Belle and her husband moved to Winfield in Cowley County in 1905. He died in 1917. She lived there forty-six years (34 as a widow). The two single daughters Glatice and Manie cared for her in the home until her death. She and her husband are buried in the Oxford Cemetery.

A family reunion was held in Winfield each year for many years on Grandmother Belle's birthday October 3. There are Lemaster descendants of Belle Lemaster and her brothers, Seamon, Stephen A. and Septimus Lemaster. But there are none to carry on the Lemaster name that we know of in Cowley County.

Submitted by Gus C. Overley, grandson
Scanned out of the Cowley County Heritage book, pg 256.


Sanford Clark Overley

Sanford Clark Overley (4/7/1855-2/11/1917) was born in Fort Wayne, Indiana. He was the third child of ten children born to William and Hannah Overley. Sanford was better known as Clark. His grandfather's name was Thomas and his great-grandfather's was Elisha Overley. He married 11/13/ 1879 to Narcis Velry "Belle" Lemaster (maiden) Wilkerson (10/3/1854-1/l/1951) Her first husband drowned in the Ninnescah River, leaving her with a small son, Orie. They lived in the community known as "Paradise Valley" on the Ninnescah River. Eight children, seven girls and one boy, were born to this union, making a family of nine. Clark and "Belle"'s children were:

Eva Alice (10/14/1880) married Ray Phipps. Their eight children are Merle, Melvin, William, Earl, Julius, Sarah Belle, Evelyn, and Audine. Eva and Ray were married in the big house that Sanford built in 1893 near Oxford.

Lulu May (6/11/1882) married Alva Wilson. They had eight children, Loyola, Ardmore, John, baby boy 11/1912, Glenn, Donald, Maribelle, and Benjamin.

Bertha Viola (1/10/1884) married Harry Humbert. They had three children, Harry, Jr., Verna, and Benny. Bertha and Harry lived their married life in Cowley County. Verna Brewer and some others of the family still live in Winfield and area.

Mabel Beatrice (3/18/1886) married Bert Shockey. They had three children, Leona, Homer, and LaRue. They lived on the farm 1905-1913.

Bessie (1 1/24/1887) married Stanley Shockey. They had seven children, Theodore (lived three days), Vierdonia (Dr. V. Mae) Savinah, Hershel (Dr.), Winfred, Adron, and Louise. Bess and Stanley lived and raised their family south of Winfield. Brothers, Winfred and Adron Shockey still live in Winfield.

Benjamin Harris (12/24/1889-6/6/1985) married Elsie May Forsman on Dec. 3, 1913. They moved to the family farm. Ben was the only son of Sanford Clark to carry on the Overley name. Ben and Elsie's children are: Gustaf (Gus), Christine, Carl, Laura Belle, and Frank, all born near Oxford in the house that Sanford Clark Overley built. Gus, Carl, and Frank are the 5th generation descendants of Elisha Overley and 3rd generation of William and Hannah Overley (who lived in Cowley County). They are also grandsons of Gustaf Malcolm Forsman, on their mother's side, who settled at Hoosier. Gus and his son, Gary, are the only full-time farmer-ranchers left from this Overley family, as far as we know.

Glatice (Katheryn Ann or Katie) Overley. Manie Rebecca Overley. Glatice and Monte never married. Manie was the only one born in the big house on the farm. Clark and Belle moved to Winfield where the younger ones went to school. Ben went three years to Southwestern College before he married and moved to the farm. Ben and Elsie raised their family there and moved to Oxford in 1954. Manie and Glatice had various jobs in Winfield and made a home for their mother, Belle. Belle was a widow 34 years and passed away in 1951 at the age of 96.

Submitted by Gus C. Overley, grandson
Scanned out of the Cowley County Heritage book, pg 256.


William Overley Family

The Overley family records start with Elisha Overley born in 1801 in Ohio and also lived in Allen County, Indiana. Elisha had at least one son, Thomas, also born in Ohio.

Thomas had five sons, Thomas, Wesley, James, Issac, and William. Isaac was buried in Allen County, Indiana, age 90 years.

William was born 5/27/1825 in Darke County, Ohio, died 3/17/1884. He married Hannah Kimmel, born 6/22/1830, died 2/23/1902. Both are buried in Mr. Vernon Cemetery in western Cowley County.

William Overley and Hannah (of Kimmel piano fame) had 10 children born at Fort Wayne, Allen County, Indiana. They are as follows: Catharine Malinda 5/6/1852-11/27/1924 married Young, Thomas; Jacob Salvester 1/l/1854-11/18/ 1912 married Shore, Elzora Ann; Sanford Clark 4/7/1855II/ 18/1917 married Lemasters, Narcis Velry "Belle;" James Henry 3/14/1857-1/29/1877 single, killed by horse; Samantha Alice 3/3/1860-4/4/1943 married Gray, Elijah Milton; Martha Ellen 2/8/1863-5/24/1946 married Freeman, Elwin M.; Eliza Jane 2/8/1865-1/5/1938 m McClung, William T.; Clara Iona 11/5/1867-7/6/1954 married Lemaster, Stephen A.; Ida Kisire I 1/ 1 B/ 1869-9/4, married Yount, William; Sarah Evvy 7/28/1872-6/10, married Heffron, Edward Whitaker.

The family lived in Cowley County in 1880, five mile of Winfield, Kansas according to the Cowley County Census d 1880. A house is still there on the farm they once owned. A house and land across the road is still owned by Lorraine Johnston, a granddaughter of Martha (Overley) Freeman.

Submitted by Gus C. Overley, great-grandson
Scanned out of the Cowley County Heritage book, pg 256.


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EMAIL Cowley County Coordinator
Karen Rodenbaugh ....Arkansas City, KS
ksr@kans.com

Email corrections and submissions to Steve ruggles


State Coordinators
Tom & Carolyn Ward, Columbus, KS
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tcward@columbus-ks.com