Wordless Wednesday – May Breneman Jones Willey

by Sherry Stocking Kline
March 12th, 2010

Here is my almost Wordless Wednesday, a photograph of my Great-Aunt May Breneman Jones Willey in front of her son’s family’s home in Minnesota.

May Breneman Jones Willey - age 79 in 1958

1959 - May Breneman Jones Willey - age 79

May’s parents were Constantine “Tom” and Salinda (Rose) Breneman. May’s first husband was Evan Jones, son of Willis W. and Martha Ellen (Smith) Jones. Willis W. and Martha Ellen originally came from Kentucky, and moved to the Midwest, living in Kansas, Missouri, and Oklahoma.

Evan and May’s son’s name was Kenneth Jones. Kenneth and his wife Lois had five children: Lawrence, Lynn, Patty, Charlie, and Kenny, and I hope one of the children, or even their children find this post, and will leave a message.

I have many happy memories of visiting Aunt May and their family in Minnesota, and we would love to re-connect with them.

5 Responses to “Wordless Wednesday – May Breneman Jones Willey”

  • Hi, Haven’t seen a post from you in awhile. Hope all is well. I’ll bet Aunt May was like my Aunt Lillian — never visited without a gift in hand. The gift may not have been expensive, with wrapped and given with respect and love.

    • I don’t remember my great Aunt coming here to visit. By the time I remember meeting her, she was elderly, and stayed at home in Minnesota and we went to visit her. She did, however, when I was probably less than 10 years old, make me the most beautiful quilt, which I used for awhile till it began to show wear then stopped, it was a sunbonnet sue quilt with the kids all doing something different. It is awesome, and one of these days I will photograph it and post it on Treasure Thursday!

  • [...] Kenneth’s Mother – May Breneman Jones [...]

  • Claire:

    This is my great grandmother. She was a special friend to my mother Lynn, her granddaughter, for my mom’s entire life. She lived with her sons family (Evan) Kenneth Jones for years in Duluth, until around 1962. At that time, Kenneth and Lois – who both worked – became concerned that she would fall and hurt herself. She did go to a nursing home and died not terribly long after that.
    Why did May and Evan Jones come to Minnesota from Kansas, and what happened to May’s husband, Evan Jones? It has been said that he was kicked in the head by a mule, which changed his personality. He auctioned all their stuff off in Kansas (my sister still has the auction flyer listing the items) and brought the family to Minnesota. He disappeared sometime after that. People assumed that he fell through the ice on Red Lake and drowned, but he was never found.
    Another question I have is about May’s children. She had one surviving son, Evan Kenneth, but I think she had others (like 2-4 of them) who died in childhood.
    By the way, that house where the photo was taken was built by May’s son, Kenneth Jones -with his own hands. This was the “new house,” as originally they lived across the street. I spent many childhood hours running up and down that rock behind May. There’s a lot of rock in Duluth. Lois Jones continued to live there until she finally got too old to care for or need it.
    Lois and Kenneth were also divorced later in life, I guess it wasn’t unheard of in our family!

    • We visited three times, myself, Dad & Mom, then my Mom, myself, Mom’s Uncle Harvey Breneman, and my nephew, who was close to may age, then just my Mom and I. My dad passed away between the first visit that I went along on and the second.

      As you may have seen on another one of these posts, May and Carrie resembled each other very much, and both were gifted at making things.

      May was in the Nopemming (sp?) nursing home the third time we came, and we visited her there. She hated it there, although Mom and I thought it was a a truly lovely place, in a beautiful setting, and we knew she wasn’t well enough to stay alone. She was special to Mom. I thought that Kenneth and Lois were divorced then, and I think perhaps Kenneth had passed on, though I may be wrong about that. I did find Kenneth’s death info on Ancestry, I think.

      I think we did know that Kenneth built that house, and I loved running up and down that rock, too, when we visited. I was 11 or 12, probably 12, when we came the first time, and probably 14 the second and 16 the last, just guessing about the latter two ages. I am fairly certain that Aunt May was at home the first two times.

      My mom is still living at 100.5, and she said that Aunt May had five children, and all but Kenneth died at birth. Mom is not sure whether he was the oldest or youngest, but said that her mother said that all of her other babies were “beautiful, and looked perfect” but they died right after birth. Mom said that they thought later it might have been the, what do you call it, Rh factor.

      Going to go to e-mail now! Thank you for contacting me! We are excited to be re-connected to your branch of the family. I had been making stabs at it off and on, though I hadn’t worked hard at it, had thought just this week again that I needed to do so.

      Sherry

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