Name: Elizabeth Mohler
Born: Jul 1816131
Died: ca. 1910
Elizabeth's approximated year of birth varies remarkably from one census
year to the next:
1850: 28 (born ca 1822) 
1860: 38 (born ca 1822) 
1870: 50 (born ca 1820) 
1880: 62 (born ca 1818) 
1900: born Jul 1816 
It's highly unusual that Elizabeth's birth year is pushed back two years
with virtually each census reading.
According to the 1880 census,  Elizabeth's father was born in
Pennsylvania and her mother in Germany. The 1900 census (she's living with
son William H Pettet) states that both parents were born in Pennsylvania.
The following is from a letter dated 1971 from Vernal Cooley Shelton
(sister of McCabe Cooley) to "Zella", in the possession of Joan Gaye
Italiano. "Grandma Cooley" is Amelia (Pettet) Cooley, widow of Greenberry
Cooley. It's worth noting that on the 1910 census, Vernal appears to have
been residing in this same home she's speaking about.1
She [Elizabeth Mohler Pettit] lived with Grandma Cooley the last few years.
She died at the age 94.
That puts her death at about 1910. Vernal continues...
The day Grandma Pettit died, grandma Cooley came outside in the yard and was
crying. I was very young but I noticed she was sad and said, "What's the
matter grandma?" She said, "Maw just died!"
I visited Putnam County, MO in 1988. The records I copied include the
following dockets in the circuit court records for Wm. H Pettit:
Pettit, W, & B, Avis
H 86, 88, 90, 155, 232, 233, 246, 247, 265, 309, 320, 412
Studying the records, I found that William Pettit and his niece Birdie
Avis were found guilty of the charge, the incident having occurred 20 Jul
1884. He was sentenced to five years, she to two years. I don't know if they
served out their terms.
Pettit, Wm State vs.
H 265, 411
Pettit, Wm. H. State of Missouri
Tearing down fence
M 6, 82, 84, 122, 170, 248, 250, 251, 252
When later inquiring to the circuit court about case #7000,  I received the following:
In the Circuit Court of Putnam County, Missouri
State of Missouri---Plaintiff
November Term 1906.
Case No. 7000.
Now comes the defendant in the above titled cause and mooves [sic] the court
to continue said cause, to the next term of this court for the following
reasons; to wit:
First ---- That the mother of defendant is now seriously and dangerously
sick at her home and requires the constant care and attention of this
defendant, that the moover [sic] hereof is likely to die at any
W H Pettet
Subscribed and sworn to before me this the 1st day of Dec 1906.
Thos B. Davis
If Elizabeth was in fact born as late as 1822 and did die at the age of 94,
that would place her death in 1916, ten years after William excused himself
from court due to his mother's grave illness. That seems unlikely. On the
other hand, if she was born in 1816, which is the most commonly cited year,
that places her death squarely in 1910, explaining why she doesn't appear on
the census for that year.
Virtually all Mohlers in the area were descended from Casper Moler
(1759-1845), a Revolutionary soldier2 and son of German
immigrant, George Adam Moler. In all likelihood, she was a granddaughter of
Casper's but I have been unable to find any supporting documentation.
To date, neither a record of death nor an obituary for Elizabeth has
1. Enumerated on April 29 and May 5, 1910.
2. Pension number S.2774.
(Last modified on Tuesday, 08-Mar-2011 21:16:32 CST)
All original portions ©
Michael Cooley, OrbitInternet.net -