David Frederick Edwards, master builder for over half a
century, was born near Pleasant View on April 30, 1880. His
father, Joshua Edwards, was born in Wales and after arriving in this
country and settling in Pleasant View, he married Myra Ann Croxton in
1872. She died in 1883 and he in 1886. Married only 11
years, Joshua and Myra had five children; Sarah Frances, born and died
in 1875; Letitia (1876-1928) never married; Margaret (1878-1922)
married John Clark, two children; David Frederick (1880-1958), married
Sarah Trone, five children.
History of the David Frederick Edwards Family
Orphaned at the age of five, Fred was taken into the home of his
Uncle Fred and Aunt Annie Croxton where he shared the same love and
care bestowed upon their two other foster children. He completed
the elementary course of study in the Pleasant View school where he
became interested in carpenter's work to the extent that it was chosen
as his life work - a vocation in which he was most proficient.
His exceptional ability in this profession brought him recognition
throughout Schuyler County and surrounding communities.
For a number of years he was associated with Ralph Strong under
the business name of Strong and Edwards. Following the death of
Mr. Strong in 1940, the business was continued in association with Fred
and his four sons. Retiring in 1954, the business continued
between Bill and George until George's death in 1960. Bill
continued the business under the name of Edwards and son until his
death in 1976. he was assisted by his son, Jim, who now heads the
firm and employs his sons, Mike and Don.
Today there are scores of fine homes as well as many business
establishments that were erected under his supervision. Strong
and Edwards built the homes of William Jones, George Baird (now Sides),
Karl Schafer, Vernon Barnes, and Paul Mourning (now Slaton). The
Edwards firm built the brick building for the Boehm family (now Jerry's
Furniture Store), Dr. Carey's home and apartment house (now Trone), and
rebuilt Knapp's building after the fire on the square.
Fred married Sarah Trone, daughter of George S. and Elizabeth
Wright on Christmas Eve, and they were privileged to celebrate their
Golden Wedding in 1956. Their children are:
William (1907-1976) married Oliva Menely and had one son who
died at birth and James Hugh, married to Norma Acker. Bill's
grandsons are William, married to Lisa Dace, Michael and Donald.
Bill's twin brother, George, married Lucille Bates and had two
children, George, Jr. and Edna Lou. George's grandchildren are
George Jr.'s children Georgia, Nancy, Cathy, David, Marna, and George,
and Edna's children, Terry and Scott Trone (1961-1963).
Gertrude (1910-1967) married Lloyd VanMeter and Virgil
Meyer. Her daughters are Betty, married to M. M. Alters, and Jane
Southerlan. Her grandchildren are Cheryl Alters, Myrna Nelson and
Julie Brueggeman and Diane, Linda and Bill Emerick (1952-1972).
Horace (1912-1969) married Marian Cidro and had a stillborn daughter in 1965.
Maurice Fred (1923) married Roma Kepler in 1952. Their
children are Sarah, married to Randall Fuqua, David, married to Lila
Shaw, and Susan, married to Keith Hartl. Fred's granddaughtrer,
Emily Anne Hartl, was born in 1982.
The crafts that Fred Edwards taught his sons included all phases
of building construction. Bill was a master carpenter, George a
skilled cabinet maker, and both Horace and Fred excelled as brick
layers. Schuyler County can indeed be proud of the building and
beauty the Edwards family has contributed to this area.
Submitted by Mrs. M. Fred Edwards
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