In the foothills, mountain community of Evergreen, Colorado is a single grave with a sandstone tombstone and old wrought iron fence. The grave site is surrounded by asphalt and a protective manmade berm on two sides. It is in the back of what used to be a lumber company storage area.
The tombstone reads:
Wife of M. Schenck
b. Oct 11, 1827
d. Mar 11, 1862
35 years 5 mo
This is not my family, however, I’ve found by searching the various databases that Sarah Ann (Lanning) Schenck does have genealogists who have been looking for her. Some simply say “unknown” for her death date. Others have misinformation stated.
I do not know what happened to Melvin Schenck, Jr. husband of Sarah Ann (Lanning) Schenck. I’ve seen genealogies that state he died in 1860. Did he die with Sarah? In Colorado? Why did they come from Bonus, Boone County, Illinois to foothills of Colorado? Were they on their way to the mining camps in Leadville? Was it to escape the Civil War? I did not research this further. Those searching this family might want to look in Evergreen, CO. Two researchers that I have found state he died in 1860. They don’t mention where Sarah died …simply “unknown”.
SARAH ANN LANNING (JAMES B. LANNING6) was born about 1827 in New York and died unknown. She married MELVIN SCHENCK, February 14, 1844 in Belvidere, Boone County, Illinois, son of MELVIN SCHENCK and ANNA THOMPSON. He was born 1822 in New York and died unknown.
Children of SARAH ANN LANNING and MELVIN SCHENCK are:
- JAMES S. SCHENCK, b. 1845, Bonus, Boone County, Illinois
- OSCAR L. SCHENCK, b. 1850, Bonus, Boone County, Illinois
- ADALINE MELISSA SCHENCK, b. April 12, 1852, Bonus, Boone County, Illinois
- ALLA SCHENCK, b. 1857, Bonus, Boone County, Illinois
Oscar Schenck, child of Sarah Ann (Lanning) Schenck and Melvin Schenck, JR,. went on to Fish Haven, ID. Oscar raised a family, lived and died there.
Adeline Melissa Schenck married John Baptist Priquet and lived in Encampment, WY.
1870 Jefferson County, Golden City, Colorado census 6 August 1870
Sarah and Melvin’s son James Schenck in the 1870 Jefferson County, CO census is living, with his family, in the household of William Trotter. His occupation is Cook… Hotel. Trotter is the Hotel Keeper. James Schenck’s wife Livinia Schenck is Hotel Servant. The Hotel was the Golden House Hotel built in 1870 at 3rd Street (later 13th street) Golden, CO
Heritage Quest census record.
One of the first families in the area was Thomas Bergen who built a house in 1859 in what is called Bergen Park (Evergreen). The little grave is likely on what was that original property. As I mentioned this is not my family, but thought it appropriate, on this Mother’s Day, to recognize the woman who is buried in this lonely grave. She was truly a Pioneer Woman.
Sarah Ann (Lanning) Schenck