Tuesday, December 27, 2005


Written by Roland Brees

Delbert (Del) Breese was born on the Brees Homestead in the Alert Community of Riley County Kansas on August 5th, 1875. Delbert was the 10th of 11 children of Watson and Sarah Ann Dugan Brees with only Zennie, who was born on April 21, 1881, being younger. Three of Delbert's older siblings, Joseph, Sylvester, and Martha, died about 1870 during one of the periodic epidemics which swept the state, and a 4th, William, Died of similar causes probably about 1879.
Delbert grew up and attended grade school in the Alert community where he helped his father farm. Delbert married Lucy Ann Stone on March 6, 1895. Lucy was the daughter of Thomas Dudley Stone who had been a Confederate soldier in the Civil War and who was a descendant of Thomas Stone who signed the Declaration of Independence. The irony of this is that Delbert's father, Watson, had served in the Union Army. There was a report that Thomas and Watson didn't get along, but doubt is cast on this by the fact that a D. Stone signed a decaration for pension for Watson in 1907. Thomas Dudley went by Dudley. Delbert and Lucy were married in Clay Center, Ks and on the way to Clay Center, they met John August Wickstrum and Hattie Belin, also from the Alert Community, who were on their way back from Clay Center where they had just been married. The significance of this is that Delbert's and lucy's son, Dudley, later married Florence, the daughter of John and Hattie.
After their marriage, Delbert and Lucy and , in March 1896, their first born, Dudley Clark, lived for a time in the original dugout that Watson had constructed when he first arrived in Kansas to homestead. Later, Del's family moved into the farmhouse with Watson. By this time, Del was doing most of the farming on the homestead as Watson was in his late sixties and the other sons had all left home.
In November of 1897, Del's younger sister, Zennie, 16, died after an illness of about 2 weeks duration of a complication of diseases. It should be noted that she had suffered serious infury in August of the same year when she was thrown from a horse and this probably contributed to her death. In March of 1899, Del's mother, Sarah, died after an illness of a very short time.
In August of 1910, Del's father, Watson, suffered an illness from which he never fully recovered and in November he had another attack which left him almost helpless. Despite his infirities, he remained cheerful to the last. Watson died on March 21, 1911 and he is buried in the Mayday, Kansas Cemetery alongside Sarah and Zennie.
Watson was the last of the old settlers in the Alert Community and was loved and respected by all. His house was just up the hill from the Alert School and on occasion he would come down to the school and the children would all gather around him much as if her were an affectionate grandfather. They enjoyed his company and he enjoyed their's.
Upon Watson's death, Delbert inherited the farm but with the stipulation that the other children of Watson's would receive a cash settlement. Delbert mortgaged the farm in order to obtain the necessary money, and when he was unable to repay the money, he lost the farm.
Meanwhile, Delbert's brother, Albert, had moved to Council Grove, Ks in 1919 where he had an orchard among other things. Delbert moved to Council Grove and started a dairy in the same general area which is known as Sample Town. In 1920, Delbert's son, Didley, who had just married Florence Wickstrum, joined the family enterprise in Council Grove. The venture, however, was short lived as a disease struck the dairy herd and it had to be destroyed.
From the southwest, meanwhile, had come glowing reports of lots of money to be earned by growing pinto beans with most of this information coming from Delbert's sister, Mary Ann (Maggie) and her husband, Asher Schoonover, who were living at Mr. Dora, New Mexico. Accordingly, Delbert and Lucy along with their children took off for New Mexico. Joining them were Dudley and Florence Brees and Delbert's daughter Ida Mae Erickson and husband, Ernest, and daughters Mildred and Evelyn. The report of the ability to grow large crops was true to an extent as the area had been experiencing an unusual wet spell in recent years and large yields could be realized the first year that the sod was busted up. However, when the rainfall returned to normal, the thin soil would blow and crops were destroyed. Indeed, New Mexico of the 1920's was a harbinger of the dust bowl days that would cover the great plains in the 1930's and the group was unable to raise enough of a crop to even pay for their seed and they lost their collateral.
Delbert and Lucy, Dudley and Florence (with Delbert's first grandson, Waldo, who had been born in New Mexico), and Ida and Ernie and family all returned to Kansas where Delbert and Lucy started running a boarding house in Leonardville which had belonged to Thomas Dudley Stone. Delbert continued in the dairy business by having a small herd at the old slaughter house west of Leonardville and later, in northeast leonardville. He also did odd jobs around town and worked in the WPA in the thirties.
Delbert died in January of 1963 and Lucy died in December of the same year. Both are buried in the Leonardville Cemetery.
It has been reported on good authority that Delbert would keep a bottle of whiskey in the oat bin in his barn which he would occassionally sample and share with others.

Thomas Dudley Stone

Is this our Thomas Stone?

Watson's Civil War Regiment

Great info. Tells of all the battles they were in.

Saturday, December 03, 2005


Alice Clark has started up the DNA project for the Breese name. She is interested in getting some Breese males tested to see what line they fall under. Sounds like an interesting project and I'd love to hear how it goes! Please click on the link at top "Breese Surname DNA Project" for more information.

Friday, December 02, 2005


This is a useful website. I haven't used it in a few years, but I found alot of info on it when I did. I will need to start searching through it again to see if anything new has popped up!


I am going to post an email I got from Alice Clark. I've corresponded with her a couple of times and she is trying to make a connection from her Breese's to Watson Clark Brees. She also is wanting Brees men to do a dna test to see what line they are from. I'll post her dna link as soon as she gets it to me. Here's her email, if you know of these people, please let us know!

Hi again, Tanya.
I am descended from Moses Breese, who was born in New Jersey around
1775, traveled through PA and settled in Butler County OH, then moved to
Delaware Co., IN, where he died in 1847. His daughter, Nancy, married
Richard Clark in 1824 in Butler County, and they had 6 children.
I have been intrigued by your Moses Clark Breese, born in Indiana, and
one senses there could be a connection. A photo I have of Moses Clark
Breese seems to bear a resemblance to my GG grandfather, son of the
above Nancy and Richard.
I have corresponded with Wilda Sweigard, a descendant of another Breese
line. She has put together some suggestive information about 4 men
named Breese. We do not know their connection to one another, although
it is easy to speculate that they may have been brothers. Some of the
info from Wilda:

1751-1780 Timothy, Moses, David and John all say born in Morris County, NJ.
1786 - Timothy on tax records in Westmoreland Co, PA - all children say
born there
1790 - Timothy in Westmoreland under name of Brace
1793 - Moses, David and John in military census of Morris Co, NJ
1800 - Moses, David and John in Westmoreland (did they move out to join
1810-1820 - Moses, John and David begin to show on tax records - Butler
Co, OH
1820 - Timothy has been in Franklin Co, IN, Butler Co OH and Hamilton Co. OH
1820 - Moses in Butler, John in Sullivan Co, IN, didn't find David,
Timothy in Hamilton OH
1830 - Timothy in Franklin Co, IN, Moses and David in Butler Co, OH,
John in Greene, IN
1840 - Timothy not found but he tells pension that he was in Preble Co, OH
1840 - John has died, David is in Butler Co, OH
1847 - Timothy dies in Lee Co, IA, Moses dies in Butler Co
1850 and 1860 - David is in Hancock Co, IN

Tanya, is your husband related to any of these 4? The reason I am
looking for volunteers for DNA test is that it would show exactly who
(among today's descendants of any Breese men) is related to whom. We
could see if Timothy, Moses, David and John were relatives or just
happened to be in the same place at the same time. We could also tie
their decendants together with any other Breese families. So even if
your husband knows his direct line, he might be able to find other
relatives through the test.

In any event, I'd be very interested in any information you may have run
across on any of the above Breeses, or any leads on how to pursue these

Wednesday, November 30, 2005





I found this site on LaGrange while looking up some Civil War info and thought it was worth coming back to and to remind me! I would like to take a ride up to there and look around, I think it's a couple of hours from me. We have an Orin Brees in our tree who was killed at LaGrange on 18NOV1862. Donna Allen told me that she thinks he was a cousin to Watson and they all enlisted on the same day, Watson, Orin, and 2 of Watson's brothers, I can't think which ones on the top of my head, but I am thinking Noah and Albert. I wish I could find my notes! Anyways, the 4 of them all enlisted on 4AUG1862...Co E Unit 103 Illinois Infantry.

Here's a page taken from the Breese book:

Watson enlisted at Canton, Illinois, on 4AUG1862 into Captain Franklin C Post's Company E of the 103 Illinois Volunteer Infantry. During this time, it was not uncommon for a leading citizen to appoint himself as a military leader and recruit men to serve under him. It is probable that a bonus of some sort was involved as there is a record of $25.00 bonus money being received with $75.00 still owed. Actvities of the 103rd Illinois during the Civil War have not yet been researched, but there is a notation of marching in the rain between Jackson, Tn and Holly Springs, Miss. in November 1862 and the 103rd was involved in the siege of Vicksburg in June and early July, 1863. However, it's possible that Watson didn't participate in this seige as the records indicate he may have been in the hospital at LaGrange or Memphis, Tn with pneumonia. He was wounded during the battle of Missionary Ridge near Chatanooga, Tn on 25NOV1863 by a musket ball (probably a Minnie ball as both sides used these). The ball entered the lower jaw, left side, fracturing it, then passing through and downward under the skin and emerging an inch above the clavicle on the right side. A slight leg wound is also noted. Listed as being in the hospital at Bridgeport, which is probably Bridgeport, Al, Cumberland US Army General Hospital, Nashville, TN and he was probably in several others prior to furlough on 16JAN1864. Treated again in September, October, November 1864 at Camp Butler General Hospital, Ill. Was discharged 18NOV1864 at Camp Butler.


Lucy Stone is my husbands great grandmother. She married Delbert Brees. I was going to post Stone family info, but in looking into my notes, I don't have much. I don't know if I've lost it, or if I just haven't researched it that much yet. Back when I was starting out, I really focused on Breese so I may have overlooked Stone. So anyways, I know a few things about the Stone Family that we are related to, and I saw this thread on Ancestry that is about our Stone family. I put it here so I can quickly refer back to it till I get my facts straightened, but this is our Stones. Just click the link! Lucy's parents are Dudley Stone and Sarah A Combs from Estill Cnty Ky...that much I know!

Tuesday, November 29, 2005


FREE 14 Day Subscription to Ancestry.com!


1) August 6, 1862, 103 Il Vol Inf Canton Fulton Co
2) November 25, 1863 Injured at Missionary Ridge, TN
3) 5ft 11in tall, dark hair, dark eyes
4) Farmer and meat butcher
5) 1869, Homesteaded in Riley Co Ks
6) Built a dugout home (it's still there, I've seen it and have pictures!)
7) About 1870 lost 3 children to measles outbreak
8) Married Katie Hudson, 23 year old widow (After Sarah passed on in 1899) I've heard that Katie Hudson took alot of family things and left.

I have pictures of Watson and Sarah and also a picture of Watson in his military uniform if anyone would like copies.

This info was taken out of the Watson and Sarah Brees book that I got at a Breese reunion. A cousin, Donna Allen put it together and it's full of interesting family facts, all the family trees and copies of alot of different documents. There is a Brees reunion held every couple of years in Kansas, near the original homestead. A Breese newsletter is also put out on occassion. If you would like info on the reunion or newsletter just let me know!

Sunday, November 27, 2005

A Great Book

Pioneers of the Bluestem Prairie

This book has biographies on the families who first settled in Riley Co Ks. I have some copied pages of the book that I requested from the historical society on BREESE, DUGAN and STONE.


I copied this off of Genforum, this is our line of Dugans and I just wanted to get it straight eventually so I'm putting it here till I get back to Dugans. Remember, Sarah Dugan m Watson Clark Breese and then we have a few more Dugans.

Sutton Fowler Dugan (probably son of James Dugan and Hannah Fowler), born 1813, October 3, near Covington, KY, died 1895 Feb. 17, May Day, Riley Co., KS. Married Mary Ann Walker (daughter of Ebenezer and Sarah Walker) born in Ohio 1815 Aug. 12. Died 1905 July 4.

They had the following children:

1) James born 1834 14 Jan, Randolph Co., Indiana. Died 1914 26 April, May Day , Riley Co. KS. Married Martha Guilliams. They had the following children:
1a) Edith Dugan, b. ca. 1862, IA
1b) Sutton Fowler Dugan II, b. 1864 14 Jan, IA
1c) William Guilliam, b. ca. 1866, IA This is, I believe, your William G.
1d) Aaron b. 1869 April 17, KS; d. 1931 Mar. 9
1e) Mary Ann, b. ca. 1874, KS
1f) Melissa, b. ca. 1877, MO

2) Sarah Ann, b. 1836-7 Indiana, died 1899 Mar. 4, May Day, Riley Co., KS. married Watson Clark Brees in Canton, Fulton Co., IL 1855.

3) Ebenezer, b. 1839 Mar 5, d. 1839 Sept.

4) Susana b. 1840 April 3, d. 1840 April 6

5) Joseph W., born 1841, 3 April, Huntsville, IN. Died 27 July 1930, St. George, KS. Married Alice Carley (daughter of Leman Carley and Harriet L. Cate) on 1865 Oct. 8, Indian Grove, Audubon Co.,IA. He was a Civil War vet known as "Blind Dugan" due to eye injuries sustained during the war.
They had the following children:
5a) Celaski Dugan, born 1866 Nov. 18, died 19 Feb. 1933, Manhattan, Riley County, KS.
5b) George Lester, born 1868 or 1869, April 28 or 29.
5c) Mary Ann, born1871 Feb. 14, died 1960, Yakima, WA. I believe this is your Mary Ann.
5d) John, born 1873 Mar. 28. died 1954 in the fall, Manhattan, Riley Co., KS
5e)Wm. Augustus, born 1875 Mar. 5, died 1955, Aug., Kansas City.
5f) Elfie Rosalie (a twin), born 1877 or 1878 15 Aug, died ca. 1896 in childbirth
5g) Effie Rosetta ( a twin) born 1877 or 1878 August 15, died 1962 June 1 in Martinez, CA, buried Manhattan KS
5h) Harriet Louisa, born 1880 3 Jan, Mayetta, KS, died 22 May 1958, Manhattan, Riley Co., KS
5i)Laura, born 28 December 1884. Died in infancy.
And three more who died in infancy: Edna, Edgar, Stephen.

6) Lucy D., born 1843-44 in Indiana, died 2 October 1892, May Day, Riley Co, KS
7) Eliza, b. 1846 in Ohio
8) Robert G., born 28 Feb. 1849, Ohio, Died 9 April 1907, May Day, KS,
9) Isaac, b. 1851-52 Indiana, died Kansas City
10) John F., born 2 Nov. 1853, Randolph Co., IN, died 25 Aug. 1943, Manhattan, KS.
11) William Harper, born 2 April 1855, died 19 Oct. 1941, St. George, Pottawatomi Co., KS.

BREESE...with or without and "E"???

We spell ours with an E on the end, so in alot of my typing, I automatically attach an E. In my research I've found it both ways and have just learned to search one time with an E and one time without. We asked my husband grandpa Reuben Vern Breese "RV" years ago why the name sometimes was spelled differently. He said that his name was spelled BREES on his birth cert but he legally changed it to BREESE because he was a well known boxer back then and had alot of articles written about him and he thought it looked better to add the "E" on the end. That's just one explanation!


1) Dudley Clark Brees b March 26, 1896, Alert, Riley Co. Ks
d June 9, 1972, Manhattan, Riley Co. Kansas

2) Ida Mae Breese b August 5, 1897, Alert, Riley Co. Ks
d August 20, 1974 Leonardville, Riley Co. Ks

3) Clarence Frances Breese b May 3, 1899 Alert, Riley Co. Ks

4) Lilvan Viola Breese b November 13, 1903 Alert, Riley Co. Ks
d Feb 8, 1977 Wamego, Pottawatomie Co Ks.

5) Ruth Delberta Breese b October 14, 1909 Alert, Riley Co. Ks
d March 19, 1996 Shawnee Mission, Ks

6) Ruby Fern Breese b March 10, 1913 Leonardville, Riley Co. Kansas

7) Reuben Vern Breese b March 10, 1913 Leonardville, Riley Co. Kansas
d 1997 San Diego, Ca

8) Donald Justin Breese b March 28 1916 Leonardville, Riley Co. Ks

9) Quentin Terrance Breese b July 8, 1918 Leonardville, Riley Co. Ks
d August 21, 1962 San Diego, San Diego Co, Ca

Other BREESE decendents...

I have alot of info on all the children from Watson and Sarah but at the moment I am going to try and focus my efforts on our direct line..Watson and Delbert and try to learn more about the DUGANS and STONES. If you see a name in our lines that you would like more info on, just make a comment and I will post the info I have.


Delbert is my husbands great grandfather. He was born 8/5/1875 in Alert, Riley Co. Kansas and died Jan 1963 in Riley Co. Ks. He married LUCY ANN STONE on March 6, 1895 in Clay Center, Clay Co. Kansas. She was born March 03, 1877 in Leonardville, Riley Co. Kansas and died December 25, 1963 in Riley Co. Kansas.

(Delbert is the son of Watson Clark Breese and Sarah DUGAN)

Saturday, November 26, 2005

Children of Watson BREES(E) and Sarah DUGAN

1) Albert Valentine Brees b 9/9/1856 Copperas Creek, Fulton Co Ill d 10/29/1947,
Council Grove, Morris Co Ks.

2) Joseph Brees b 1858

3) Sylvester Brees b 1860

4) Martha Brees b 1862

5) Eliza Jane Brees b 7/1/1864 Copperas Creek, Fulton Co. Ill d 8/18/1852,
San Diego, San Diego Co, CA

6) Mary Ann Brees b 2/21/1866 Banner, Fulton Co, Ill d 12/03/1947,
Clayton, New Mexico

7) William Brees b 1868

8) Matthew Windfield Brees b 1/9/1871 Alert, Riley Co. Ks d 10/10/1963
Herington, Dickerson Co. Ks

9) Ida May Brees b 4/21/1873 Leonardville, Riley Co. Ks d 3/25/1930
Riley Co Ks.

10) Delbert Festus Brees b 8/5/1875 Alert, Riley Co Ks. d Jan 1963
Riley Co Ks

11) Unknown Brees b 1877

12) Zennie Brees b 1879

Recommended Reading:

Parents of Watson Clark Breese

I don't have alot of information on Watson's parents and have gotten stuck. Here's what I have so far: Watson's parents are Samuel BREESE b 1798 Pa and Jane PRICKETT b 1808 NJ. Samuel and Jane were married Sept 14, 1828 in Hamilton, Butler Oh.
Their children:
Watson Clark Breese b 1831 Sullivan Co In
Noah W. Breese b 1839 Sullivan Co In
Albert F. Breese b 1841 Sullivan Co In
Thomas J. Breese b 1845 Sullivan Co In

Samuel Breese's father is John Breese b 1765 in NJ
Wife unknow
Valentine b 1791
John Jr
Samuel b 1798
Mary Ann
Unknown Daugther
All the children were born in Pa and resided in Butler Co Oh in the early 1800's where Valentine, John Jr, Samuel and Phebe were married.
I need more info on John Breese but just haven't been able to find anything else out!

I haven't been able to find anything on Jane Prickett, her parents or siblings, nothing!

Recommended Reading:

Watson Clark Breese

Watson Clark Breese was born June 27, 1831 in Sullivan Co. Indiana and died March 21, 1911 in Riley Co, Ks. He married Sarah Ann Dugan Apr 14, 1855 in Canton, Fulton Co. Illinois (daughter of Sutton DUGAN and Mary WALKER. She was born April 29, 1836 in Randolph Co. Indiana and died March 4, 1899 in Riley Co Kansas.

Recommended Reading:


I am going to attempt to get this all straight! BREESE is my husbands family, on his paternal side. He is related through WATSON CLARK BREES(E), his gg grandfather.

I started tracing his family tree a few years back and we have had the good fortune to meet many of his family members through genealogy that we otherwise wouldn't have had the chance to meet. I haven't done much over the last couple of years but also want to start on his maternal side HARRIS.
I also will start on my family, which will be a little more tricky. I was adopted, so I want to do both families. My family names are GREER, GOEDKER, HOULE, DEMBROSKY.
Eventually, I'll link to another site with those names as I gather more info.