Reuben Levi Short (1840-1906) and Sarah J. Blakesley (1839-1908)

Updated December 2020.

Reuben Levi Short and Sarah Blakesley are Todd’s 3X Great Grandparents.

Reuben Levi Short was born December 5, 1840 in Vermillion County, Indiana. He is the son of Isaac Short and Susannah Combs. Reuben is found living with them on the 1850 US Census in Helt, Vermillion County, Indiana.

Sarah J. Blakesley was born May 22, 1839 in Indiana. She was the daughter of Silas Blakesley and Sarah Edwards. Sarah was living with her parents on the 1850 US Census, also in Helt, Vermillion County, Indiana.

Reuben and Sarah were married on February 20, 1860 in Vermillion County, Indiana.

On the 1860 US Census, Reuben was 20 and Sarah was 21. They lived in Helt, Vermillion County, Indiana. The box for having been married within the year is checked for both. Todd’s 2x great grandmother Melissa, age 3, is listed. Also in the home was Reuben’s mother Susannah, age 60; Rueben’s sister Susannah, age 11; and an unknown Nancy Louis, age 60. Nancy lived with Susannah on the 1870 US Census also, so I wonder if they were sisters.

Reuben enlisted to serve in the Civil War on August 11, 1862 in Indiana. He was in Company D, 85th Indiana Infantry. He was discharged June 12, 1865 near Washington DC.

On the 1870 US Census, the family was in Helt, Vermillion County, Indiana. Reuben was 29 and Sarah was 30. They had 3 children at home: Laura J, age 10; Albert, age 8; and Malinda (later known as Lelia Bell), age 2. (Melissa was 13, attending school, and living with James Beaty and family in Perry, Lawrence, Indiana, over 100 miles from her parents. She married 2 years later.)

On the 1880 US Census, the family had relocated to Brouilletts, Edgar County, Illinois. Reuben was 39 and Sarah was 41. Children at home were: Laura, age 19; Albert, age 18; Lizzy (later known as Lelia Bell), age 11; and Emma, age 8.

On the 1900 US Census, the family was back in Vermillion County, Indiana, in Elwood. Reuben was 59 and Sarah was 60. Reuben’s brother Robert, age 70, lived with them. They reported having been married 40 years and having 4 children, so it is possible that Reuben had a wife before Sarah and that Todd’s 2X Great Grandmother Melissa is from that marriage.

Reuben was admitted to the US Home for Disabled Volunteer Soldiers in Danville, Vermillion County, Indiana on July 30, 1903. He died there of pulmonary tuberculosis on August 7, 1906. His Find A Grave memorial is here.

Sarah died of pulmonary tuberculosis also, on March 27, 1908 in Wayne, Henry County, Indiana. Her Find A Grave memorial is here. Here is her obituary:

The children of Reuben Levi Short and Sarah Blakesley:

Melissa Short – Melissa is Todd’s 2X Great Grandmother. Read about her here.

Laura J. Short – Laura was born January 2, 1860 in Scotland, Edgar County, Illinois. She married Basil Thomas on February 26, 1886 in Douglas County, Illinois. They had 4 children. They divorced after 1908 (she was listed in her mother’s obituary as Laura Thomas), and Laura married Joshua Kight.  On the 1910 US Census, Laura lived with her husband Joshua, and Basil lived with 3 of their 4 children and was listed as a widower. Laura died January 22, 1931 in Paris, Edgar County, Illinois. Her Find A Grave memorial is here.

Albert Short – Albert was born in March 2, 1862 in Hillsdale, Vermillion County, Indiana. He married Francis Conley on December 10, 1881 in Ringgold County, Iowa. They had a son, and she died. He married Maggie Ladd on January 24, 1889 in Vermillion County, Indiana. They had no children. He died November 12, 1946 in St. Joseph County, Indiana. His Find A Grave memorial is here.

Lelia Bell Short – Lelia was born June 14, 1868 in Vermillion County, Indiana. She was listed as “Malinda” and “Lizzy” on the 1870 and 1880 US Census. She married William DeRome on her birthday in 1885. They had 5 children. Lelia died on March 17, 1953 in Pennville, Jay, Indiana. Her Find A Grave memorial is here.

Rosie Emma Short – Rosie was born October 11, 1871 in Clinton County, Indiana. She married James Shanks  July 4, 1889 in Douglas County, Indiana. He was a laborer for the railroad and in the automobile industry. They had 9 children. She appears in Quaker meeting minutes for Vermillion County, Indiana. She died  November 7, 1962 in Danville, Vermillion, Illinois. Her Find A Grave memorial is here.