ISAAC DARNEAL ROWDEN
by Peggy Smith Hake
Isaac Darneal Rowden was born in Illinois on July 22, 1841. He was a son of Nathaniel Rowden and his fourth wife, Anna McKinney Dennis. Nathaniel and Anna married in Greene Co., ILL in 1836. She was the widow of William Dennis and a daughter of Abraham and Mary McKinney.
Isaac’s paternal grandparents were Abraham and Rachel (Cheek) Rowden, early pioneers of the Commonwealth of Virginia.
Isaac came to Central Missouri with his parents sometime after 1841 where other members of the Rowden family had also settled. The land where the Rowdens homesteaded was in eastern Miller County and western Maries County, so these families are found in census records in both counties. The Rowden’s family history has been researched very thoroughly and extends back many generations to Colonial Virginia and even earlier to 17th century England.
Isaac Darneal Rowden married Caroline L. Clark in Miller County on 7 November 1865. Caroline was born in Miller County 4 October 1846 and was a daughter of Alexander Clark and Minerva Davidson-Myers. Her maternal grandparents were John P. ‘Hoppin’ and Elizabeth (Farmber) Clark and her maternal grandparents were William O. and Rhoda (Boyd) Davidson, all who came to Miller County in the mid 1830s from Greenup County, Kentucky.
NOTE: It seems that no matter whom I research for my articles, I have some connection to at least one family. While compiling this article, I found I have ancestral ties to the Rowdens, Clarks, and Boyds...............
During the Civil War, Isaac enlisted into military service and served as a private in Co. K of the 12th Missouri Cavalry during 1863-1865. He was wounded during this time and was released from duty, but he re-enlisted and served “with conspicous bravery”, per his obituary. In some of his military records, it says he suffered from deafness in his right ear so evidently this was an injury he obtained while fighting in the war. Other Miller County men who fought with Isaac in Co. K of the 12th MO Cavalry were Silas Capps, John A. Setser, John Schubert, and Greenville Boyd.
Isaac and Caroline married after he returned from the Civil War and by 1870, they were living in Miller County in eastern Osage township. Some of the neighbors were the families of Clark, Boyd, Cross, Davidson, Hamilton, Ahart, Humphrey, and Whalen. In their home were three young children: Jacob, Minerva, and Mary Agnes. Ten more children would be born by 1891.
In 1880, Isaac and Caroline had moved to Maries County and were living in Miller township (near the Miller County line). Their neighbors there were the Healeys, Blankenships, Clarks, Palmers, Hickeys, Bransons, Lawsons, Claytons, and Rowdens.
The children of Isaac and Caroline (Clark) Rowden were: JACOB H. ROWDEN 1866-1881; MINERVA A. ROWDEN b. 1868 m. William Boyd; MARY AGNES ROWDEN b. 1870 m. James R. Goff; ADDIE GERTRUDE ROWDEN 1872-1890; ISAAC ELMER ROWDEN 1873-1963 m. Arizona Workman; FRANCIS MARION ROWDEN 1876-1916; GEORGE WASHINGTON ROWDEN 1879-1958 m. Leffa Snyder; ISABELL ROWDEN 1882-1883; DAISY M. ROWDEN 1884-1884; PEARL ROWDEN b. 1885 m. Carroll Stevens; BESSIE H. ROWDEN b. 1888 m. James M. Hardin; DESSIE M. ROWDEN b. 1888 (twin to Bessie) m. Lewis M. Tidwell; and OLIVE MAUDE ROWDEN b. 1891 m. Rufus Ray Crum.
Sometime before the turn of the 20th century, Isaac, Caroline, and their children left Missouri and first traveled to Lincoln County, OK where they stayed for a short time. They decided to go to the Northwest and traveled to Idaho, first locating near the Slickpoo Indian Mission in Asotin County. They also lived in Nez Perce County and about 1919, moved to Lewiston, Idaho near the Washington state line. It was in Lewiston that Isaac died on September 9, 1926 at the age of 85 years. He had suffered a paralytic stroke ten months earlier and never recovered. He was survived by his aged wife, to whom he had been married almost 61 years, 8 children, 32 grandchildren and 17 great grandchildren. Caroline (Clark) Rowden lived until February 4, 1929 when she died at the age of 83 years.
NOTE: In 1992, I heard from a great granddaughter of Isaac and Caroline Rowden. She lives in Pasco, Washington and wrote me a wonderful letter about her grandfather, George Washington Rowden, oldest son of Isaac and Caroline. About 1982, she went back to Idaho to visit the old homestead of her great grandparents, accompanied by her mother and sister. The farmhouse was gone, but parts of the chimney and foundation remained. She said, “The yellow ‘homestead rose’ that Isaac and Caroline had planted by the door was in full, glorious bloom”. The old barn was still standing. The farm was located on the Little Mission creek near the Slickpoo Mission of the Nez Perce Indian Reservation. I am sure their visit to the family’s pioneer homestead rekindled some wonderful old memories for the granddaughter and great granddaughter of Isaac and Caroline Rowden!