Photos of Mrs. Elizabeth Weaver are very rare. She was the Lisbon/Sussex pioneer wife of the man named the "Father of Sussex-Lisbon" because of all his local accomplishments, political offices held, leadership of the pioneer community and in his time a vast land owner, locally, and in a northwestern Missouri alternate Sussex-Lisbon secondary settlement. He was one of four brothers and a sister who came to the Lisbon area as it was opened to homesteaders in the late 1830s.

James was the son of William and Mary Hardiman Weaver. In 1809, the Weaver clan moved to Peasmarsh, in County Kent, Sussex, England. (Sussex was originally set up by King Alfred the Great, as the home of the South Saxons (in turn there was Essex, and Wessex, and Northumbria, land of the North Men). They and their growing family learned the raising of hops and sheep herding. 

As son James, born Oct. 17, 1800, matured, he married Elizabeth Field, born Oct. 17, 1800. He was 20 and she was just 18 years old.

In 10 years, 1820 to 1830, James and Elizabeth would have six children: James Weaver Jr., Thomas, William the second, Mary, Richard and Rebecca.

There was a family meeting of the four brothers and the sister with their old father, plus the father of James' wife, Elizabeth, the family decided that it was not doing well in Sussex, England, and they decided to sell everything and sail to the new world for New York state.

On March 10, 1830, the entire family set out on the Brig Emma from Rye Harbor with Capt. Frost in command. Six weeks later, they arrived in New York, April 17. They went to western New York in Oneida County, and bought small land holdings.

The first-born son, James Jr., caught Tuberculosis and died March 14,1835. He was quickly replaced as Elizabeth had four more children: Elizabeth Ann, born Dec. 27, 1831; John born March 20, 1833; Caroline, born Nov. 20, 1834; and Edward James, born July 11, 1836. This brought the family to 10 children, but one had died.

Again, the growing family had a meeting to decide if they should again have a massive family move, this time to the land newly opened for homesteading in the Wisconsin Territory. They decided to and what it must have been to mother nine children on this migration.

Initially, the Weavers claimed land on Maple Avenue from Lisbon Road north to the future Main Street ($1.25 per acre and $200 for 160 acres). But this did not stop Elizabeth and James, with nine children in tow, as Ruth was born Nov. 24, 1837, in Lisbon, but she would die eight months later, July 29, 1838.

She would be replaced by a new baby, Alfred, born July 24, 1837. Next would be Emily, born May 11, 1841; Lydia, born July 20, 1842; Stephen, born Sept. 28, 1843, and finally, Richmond, born Nov. 24, 1845.

Meanwhile, 15-year-old Jane Rebecca died Dec. 13, 1844, and thus Richard as he was born was the 16th child but only 13 were alive. The vast majority of the 13 lived long lives and then there was a vast set of cousins. A godly number of the boys fought in the Civil War, led by sergeant and flag bearer, Alfred Weaver.

The mother, Elizabeth, had 16 children in 24 years. She died at 66 years old on March 17, 1867. Her initial home was a log cabin on what is the dead end of Quarry Road today on the western side of the old Halquist quarry (north of Lisbon Road). That house would be replaced in her lifetime by a big, two-story-plus home.

Meanwhile, on Oct. 2, 1842, the James/Elizabeth homestead barn was the site of the very first St. Alban's church service. Today, that barn still stands, but somewhat altered.

When Elizabeth died, most of her children were in the late 20s, 30s and 40s with lots of grandchildren. 

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