Wyle B. and Elizabeth Masten
Wyle B. Masten
was born August 31, 1809 in Virginia.
He married Elizabeth Britton
who was born about 1818 in Tennessee.
They were the parents of nine children - seven daughters and two sons -
all of whom were born in Tennessee,
Minerva, Meuerva, or Minerville (~1839), who married Sam
Nancy (1/20/1840 –
4/9/1929), who married Joseph Henard
Julia, or July (~1843),
who married Henry Solomon
(~1845), who married James (Jim) A. Preston
John Baxter (7/2/1846 – 6/24/1927), who married Celia Ann Spain
William Keen (10/17/1848 – 2/8/1897), who never married
Sara Elizabeth (~1851),
who married Henry Allen
Lucinda (~1854), who
probably never married
Mary A (~1856),
who died in Dade
County, Missouri at the age of fifteen
The oldest son was John Baxter
Masten, who was our ancestor. John, his
brother (William Keen), and two sisters (Nancy, Julia) all came to Texas – probably on the same move with
Wyle and his wife.
In 1840, Wyle and Elizabeth lived in Hawkins County, Tennessee.
By 1850, they had moved further west but were still in Tennessee, probably near Nashville. Although the 1860 Tennessee Census is
difficult to read, it clearly identifies their location as Robertson County.
The census identifies Wyle and
Elizabeth as simply “W” and “E”. Several
of the children are likewise identified only by their initial, however some of
the children are listed with specific names: Julia, John, William, Mary, and
Elizabeth (or Eliza). The census identifies
W. as age 52, born in Virginia and E. as age 42, born in Tennessee; W. is identified as a farmer with
property valued at $450.
We don’t know exactly when Wyle and Elizabeth
moved from Tennessee to Dade County, Missouri.
They were still in Tennessee during the 1860 Census, and we know
that John Baxter married Celia Spain in Missouri in May, 1869. He must have been in Missouri for some time prior to 1869 (no
doubt it took some time to court Celia!), so the move to Missouri was probably no later than the mid-to-late
1860’s. We know they were clearly in Missouri by 1873 because Elizabeth died in Missouri at that time.
Elizabeth died sometime between October 22 (the
date of her will) and November 2, 1873 (when her will was entered into the Dade County Probate Court).
Wyle then married Sarah Susan Creed on February 4,
1874. This marriage ended in divorce, and there
were no children born to the marriage. Wyle
later married Melvina Bowles.
In 1884, Wyle and Melvina moved to Texas. On March 2, 1885, Wyle bought sixty-five acres of
land 11 miles southwest of Gainesville from Mr. J. N. Gist. This land was located on waters of Duck
Creek, and Wyle paid $840 cash and signed a note for $200 that was due in
twelve months at ten percent interest.
At the time of his death, Wyle's
possessions included his sixty-five acre farm, one cow, three hogs, about 150
bushels of corn in the crib and 60 bushels of corn in the field, a few bales of
hay, some farming equipment, one heating stove, three five gallon jars, a
grinding stone, washing kettle, barrels, buggy and harness, and a few other items.
Wyle B. Masten (1809 -1896) is buried in the Era cemetery. Three of his children (William Keen, John
Baxter, and Nancy Henard) are also buried in the Era cemetery. All of these graves are near each other in the
far NW corner of the cemetery, and it is reported that Wyle’s and William’s are
some of the earliest graves in Era.