Open House - Mrs. S. E. Slavens observed her 86th birthday Thursday of last week by having open house at her home at 318 East Ohio street. Throughout the day, friends called to wish her many happy returns of the day and to bring her gifts - handkerchiefs, flowers, candy, and other lovely mementos of the happy anniversary. Miss Fern Brown, daughter of a step-daughter, Mrs. J. C. Datwieler, wired a potted plant from Texas where she teaches, which was one of the most pleasant of the surprises. Another lovely bouquet came from Mr. and Mrs. Frank Brown.
Sarah E. Settles was born in Pike County, Missouri, December 20, 1848. As a small child she went to Montgomery County with her parents, the late Mr. and Mrs. James H. Settles, and a few years later the entire family came to Henry County. Their first home here was on the site where LaDue is now located. There was an Indian camp near the Settles home and young Sarah went to the camp with her father and saw them doing beadwork. The Indians were then peaceable. Mrs. Slavens remembers going to Clinton when they lived at LaDue and in the river bottom a pilot, a man on horseback, had to go ahead of their wagon when the river was up to guide them safely to the higher land. This entire bottom road is now built up so high water is seldom a menace to the traveler.
When the Civil War began, the family had moved to the Dan Treadway place northeast of Clinton. The father had burned his hand when he was young an did not have full use of it, so he could not serve. His brother fought on the Southern side, but North and South came to the Settles' home and ate their meals frequently. Mr. Settles was a trader and often gone from home, but his family never feared the soldiers of either cause.
When she was 19, Sarah E. Settles was married to Monetha Alphonso Brown, on December 24, 1867. They made their home east of town and were given three sons - Henry Harrison Brown, now in Dillon, Mont.; Frank Brown, four miles east of Clinton and Claudius Allen Brown, Gravette, Ark. Mr. Brown died February 7, 1879, less than 12 years after their marriage. On March 1, 1885, Mrs. Brown and G. W. Slavens were married. His children were given the same capable care and understanding love as hers were, and in turn each child, whether her own or Mr. Slavens, loves her and is eager to do anything to make her life happier and more contented. These step children who live are: Mrs. Susie Crews, Liberty; Mrs. Jessie Parks, near Coal; Chas. Slavens, formerly of Colorado, now near Clinton; Mrs. Frank Brown and Mrs. J. C. Datwieler, near Clinton. There are nine grandchildren.
Mr. and Mrs. Slavens came to Clinton in 1905, and July 23, 1907, Mr. Slavens entered eternal rest. Since then Mrs. Slavens has lived alone, although part of her home is now rented. After she does the housework, she embroiders or pieces quilts in leisure moments, doing beautiful, neat work. She is spirited and alert, and has not lost one whit of the fire of youth. It is a delight to call upon her so vivacious and interesting is she, and alive to the events of today. She has lived 86 years on earth but she is not old. One can not imagine her old - she has caught the spirit of youth and embodied it in her character. During her birthday celebration, the callers were served candy, cocoa and wafers, and at noon there was a lunch which only the children and family attended. Among those who called were: Misses Anna and Sarah Henry, Bess Threlfall, Allie Duff, Hazel Cheatham, Clara Tillman; Mesdames Ruth Alexander and Monte, Cecilia Henry and Keith, J. W. and Joan, H. J. Farlow and Keith, Maud Parks, Lillie Consalus, B. L. Cheatham, Mary Shoemaker, Clint Haynes, Alice Hussey; Messrs. and Mesdames C. S. Slavens, Frank Brown, J. C. Datwieler, R. F. Simes and Bobby, Messrs. Curtis, Elmer and John Slavens, Uel and Everett Brown, Mrs. May Henry and Mrs. Ellen Stephens.
Celebrates 91st Birthday - Mrs. S. E. Slavens, one of Henry County's pioneers, of 318 East Ohio Street, where she has lived since coming to Clinton about 1903, celebrated her 91st birthday Sunday at her home, with a bounteous basket dinner taken by relatives. Guests were her pastor and wife, Rev. and Mrs. Paul S. Stauffer, who with Mrs. Slavens' niece, Mrs. C. C. Jones, and a granddaughter, Mrs. Forest Dean, delighted the honoree with singing. Mrs. Slavens had two special birthday cakes - an angel food and coconut made by Mesdames Uel and Frank Brown. Among other tempting dishes was the green and red Christmas salad made by Mrs. Dean, who had arranged it in individual molds and placed them around a Christmas tree.
Mrs. Slavens, who was before her marriage, Sarah Elizabeth Settles, was born December 20, in Pike County and moved with her parents to Montgomery County, when about eight years old. At the close of the Civil War, the family came to Henry County, the father, who came to Missouri from Kentucky, moved the stock and goods by covered wagon, while the family came via St. Louis on the train as far as Sedalia, then on in a wagon. Her father first settled at what is now LaDue but at that time was a village of the Osage Indians, who were beginning to move away. Mrs. Slavens often went into the Indian camp and the women became fond of her, always wanting to carry the barefoot girl when she was out so she would not get her feet wet. Mr. Settles traded this tract to his brother and moved to a farm, then 2 1/2 miles from Clinton, but now about 1 1/2 miles from the town. Earl Tillman now owns the Settles' farm where their daughter, Sarah Elizabeth, was living when she was married to M. A. Brown. They moved near her parental homeplace.
Two of their 3 sons were present Sunday; Frank Brown, near Clinton, and C. A. Brown of Gravette, Ark., who came Friday for a week's visit and to be at the celebration. Her other son is H. H. Brown of Dillon, Mont., who came for the celebration last year. Mr. Brown was a livestock raiser and farmer and after his death his wife married G. W. Slavens, becoming as an own mother to his children, who have never ceased to regard her as such and to their children Mrs. Slavens is truly "Grandma." At Mr. Slavens' retirement from farming, he and his wife came to Clinton. At that time few houses were built on Ohio Street. Mrs. Slavens has seen Clinton extend into the surrounding prairie and many changes have taken place, among which are women's dresses and she says she cannot get used to the modern young woman's dress. Mrs. Slavens has shared her home with numerous school girls, whom she has regarded as her daughters and who fondly remember her annual celebration. She was a charter member of the Freedom Christian Church, which had its nucleus in a schoolhouse, then she transferred her membership to the Clinton Christian Church after the former church disbanded. Her life has truly been consecrated to following the Master.
Relatives present Sunday included Messrs. and Mesdames Uel and Frank Brown and the latter's daughter, Anna Sue, who was Mrs. Slavens' only great-grandchild present, J. C. Datwieler and Georgia, Charles and Elmer Slavens, C. C. Jones and Lelia Fern, Geo. Nichols, Bobby and Herschel, Mesdames Jessie Parks, Ruth Alexander, Montie and Donna Jo, R. J. Massey, Forest Dean; Miss Arlene Dodson, Pat Logan and Warren Burnsides, Rev. and Mrs. Stauffer, of and near Clinton, also C. A. Brown of Gravette, Ark.
from the Henry County MoGenWeb site