The information Greg (my husband) and I found in the cemetery at Roscoe, Illinois was a real eye opener regarding new genealogy facts about our Taft Ancestry. All these photos here were taken in July 2007.
Levi Merrill Taft was Corey Taft's younger brother by 16 years. He arrived at Roscoe one year later than his older brother, Corey, on June 4, 1837.
We also have a record that an "Ira" Taft bought 80 acres of land in Roscoe Twp. on Oct. 28, 1839. This may be Ira who is another younger brother of Corey Taft. Corey and Matilda have a son named Ira but he is too young to have made this land purchase.
Below ▼is the sign at the entry to Roscoe Cemetery which is a small but well kept cemetery. At the right is the Levi Taft monument. It is tall and fairly prominent in that area of the cemetery. There are inscriptions on 3 sides of this obelisk. See Below.
Because of information we were able to obtain at the Rockton Illinois Historical Society and the Talcott Free Library in Rockton, we can add new information about this family. We now know that Levi's father, Ebenezer Taft, came from the town of Shelburne, Franklin Co. Massachusetts and his mother, Betsy Corey, originally hailed from Shaftsbury, Bennington Co., Vermont. We know that Levi lived with his brother, Corey, on his claim until his brothers death in 1839 and may have continued to live there after he died. Levi took up land in Owen or Harlem townships from the government on Oct 28, 1839 and land in Harrison Twp. on December 18, 1841. He does not marry Electa until January of 1845 at 28 years of age and Electa is 31. Levi and Electa have 4 children, only one of whom lives past 18 years.
1) Henry Ward Taft- Born on Oct. 6, 1845 and died Oct. 27, 1845. He is probably named after Levi's older
brother, Ward Clay Taft.
2) Mary Elizabeth Taft - Born June 1850 and died on September 3, 1850, 3 months old
3) Helen A. Taft - Born December 1852 and die on April 17, 1871 at age 18.
4) George M. Taft - Born February 6, 1855 and died in 1933. He married Cora B. Carpenter on November
23, 1876. Cora was born in 1856 and died in 1927 and was the daughter of Newton and Almira Reynolds Carpenter.
Census records show that in 1850 some of Electa's brothers and sisters are living with them plus the children of his deceased brother Corey and his wife, Matilda. By 1840 Matilda is remarried and in 1850 is residing with her new husband Cyrus Geer and their children in Ashtabula County, Ohio. Although Matilda and Cyrus are married in Ashtabula Co., Ohio, they may at first moved to Crawford County, Pennsylvania as an 1850 census record says that their son, Eri, was born there.
Below are the inscriptions on the 3 sides of the Taft Monument at Roscoe Cemetery.
There are separate stones for son George, his wife Cora and for Corey and his son Stutson, all in the same large cemetery plot. There are two other stones. They are for Merrill and Marshall Taft. They are just alike and their names suggest that they were twins. There are no dates on these stones but my best guess is that they were the sons of George and Cora Taft, Levi and Electa's son and his wife.
Their stones are shown below.