Elbert County, Colorado History and Genealogy

Saturday, March 23, 2019

The 1907 Elbert Exodus to Glendora, California

The Epler Family at their home near Elbert about 1903

One of the stories in my husband's family tells of the Eplers and Greshams moving from Elbert to southern California in 1907. Daniel Epler came to Colorado in 1874 and homesteaded west of Elbert. His daughter, Mary Elizabeth, married George Gresham, my husband's great-grandparents.

The first mention of a possible move to Glendora, California in Los Angeles County is in the February 22, 1907 issue of the Elbert County Banner. Jacob Epler is Daniel's brother, who also homesteaded in Elbert.

Colorado Historic Newspaper Collection
This is the beginning of a flurry of newspaper bits about the Eplers, Greshams and, a surprise to me - other Elbert families - selling their ranches, holding auctions for their farming equipment and household goods, loading railroad cars with what household household items they had left, and boarding the train headed for Glendora. 

October 25, 1907 Colorado Historic Newspaper Collection
November 1, 1907 Elbert County Banner Colorado Historic Newspaper Collection
In all, I have counted 13 men who moved their families to Glendora in October and November of 1907 from Elbert with a total of 37 people! The majority of the people were members of the Epler family or had a marriage connection to the Eplers like the Frank Long family. However, there were at least 7 other families that also relocated. 

March 5, 1909 Elbert County Banner, Colorado Historic Newspaper Colletion

Most of the people returned to Elbert within a year or two. Daniel Epler moved to Gooding, Idaho in 1911 or so, along with a couple of his sons, where he died November 24, 1912. The George Gresham family returned to Elbert in 1912.

Jake Epler (perhaps the instigator of the exodus?) who is listed as a Real Estate Broker in the 1910 Census in Glendora, lived in Glendora the rest of his life, as did Frank Long and John H. Jones. 

Below is a complete listing of families who moved to Glendora or visited Glendora for several months:

Dan Detwiler – On Monday, Nov. 18, 1907 Dan, Bertha and daughters, Clyde and Minnie, boarded train for Glendora. Married to Bertha Dietrich. Her sister married Al Carnahan. 1910 Census Elbert – Buyer & Stockman. 1920 Census Littleton - Buyer & Stockman. Dan died in Denver before 1930.

Daniel Epler – On Saturday Oct. 26, 1907 Daniel and wife, Abigail, boarded train for Glendora. Bought 160 acres in El Centro, CA in 1909. 1910 Census Glendora. Moved to Gooding, Idaho where he died Nov. 24, 1912. Age 69.

Dan Epler, Jr. – Daniel son. Single. 1910 Census Glendora – Owned a feed store. Living with Harvey Harding. 1920 Census Littleton, CO. Died in Denver on May 8, 1960. Age 85.

Elmer Epler – Daniel’s son. Single in Glendora. 1910 Census El Centro, CA – Farmer, living with George Gresham. 1920 Census in Glendora. Married in Colo. Springs 1921. Died in 1961 in Kennewick, WA.

Jacob Epler – Daniel’s brother. Jake and wife and daughters, Amy, Opal and Sarah, in Glendora. 1910 Census in Glendora, listed as Real Estate Broker. Jake stayed in Glendora. Died in Glendora on Nov. 25, 1921. Age 69

Martin “Ed” Epler – Daniel’s son. Ed and Ella and child in Glendora. Married Ella Marie Lundy. Sister of Glen Lundy. 1910 Census Glendora – owned a feed store. 1920 Census Gooding, ID – farmer. 1930 Census Elbert – farmer. Died in Elbert 1962. Age 79.

Sherman Epler – Daniel’s son. On Monday, Nov. 18, 1907 Sherman, wife and daughter, Hazel, boarded train for Glendora. 1910 Census Elbert. 1920 Census Littleton. Died in Littleton, CO on Feb. 28, 1954. Age 84.

George Gresham – Married to Mary Elizabeth Epler, Daniel Epler’s daughter. George, Mary and 3 children in Glendora. 1910 Census El Centro, CA – Farmer. 1920 Census Elbert. Died in Colorado Springs on May 21, 1962. Age 87.

Harvey Harding – Daniel Epler’s stepson. On Oct. 26, 1907 Harvey and wife, Stella, boarded train for Glendora. 1910 Census Glendora – Owned a feed store. 1920 – Gooding – Farmer. Died in Gooding, ID Sep. 14, 1948. Age 66.

John H. Jones – On Oct. 26, 1907 John and wife, Eliza, boarded train for Glendora. Father of Sheriff Ray Jones. Elbert County Treasurer. 1910 and 1920 Census in Glendora. Died in Elbert, Dec. 6, 1921 age 86.
Frank Long – On Monday, Nov. 18, 1907 Frank, wife and daughter, Cora, boarded train for Glendora. Lived in Elbert 1910 census. Glendora 1920 and 1930 census. Died in Glendora (July 26, 1931) age 76.

Fred Long – Frank’s son. Moved to Glendora about 1918. 1920 & 1930 Census Glendora. Died Dec. 24, 1948 in Glendora. Age 64.

Oliver Long – Frank’s son. Married Alice Epler, Jake’s daughter. 1910 Census Glendora. Also lived in Long Beach. Died Aug. 4, 1962 Los Angeles County. Age 83

Glen Lundy – Single. On Oct. 26, 1907 Glen boarded train for Glendora. Brother of Ella Marie Lundy who married Martin “Ed” Epler. Son of J.H. Lundy. 1910 Census Elbert. 1920 Census Pueblo

J.H. Lundy – 1909 – went with D.L. Epler and George Gresham to look at land in El Centro, California. 1910 Census Elbert. 1920 Census Long Beach. Died April 12, 1928 in Long Beach. Age 81. Buried in Elbert.

Frank Neeley (James F. Neeley) – Oct. 26, 1907 Frank and Anna and 4 children boarded train for Glendora. Married Anna May Dittemore. 1910 Census Colo. Springs. 1920 Census Elbert. Died 1929 in Elbert. Age 72.

Alex Oaks – On Monday, Nov. 18, 1907 Alex and wife boarded the train for Glendora. Returned to Elbert January 1908. Brother of Joseph Oaks. Died in Colorado Springs in 1929. Age 86.

Joseph Oaks – Left for California same week Alex returned to Elbert in January 1908. Died in Elbert in 1926. Age 86.

John Strachan – 1907 Mr. and Mrs. Strachan moved to Glendora. (California Newspaper) 1910 Census Elbert - Farmer. 1920 & 1930 Census Long Beach. Died in Long Beach in 1944.

D.R. Williams – Unable to find any info at this time.

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