|Birth: ||Mar. 4, 1826|
|Death: ||Mar. 16, 1896|
The death of Jackson Abney in Denver on Saturday evening brings to the memory of many old timers in Cheyenne recollections of early experiences in the new West. More than thirty years ago Jackson Abney was an active contractor, freighter and Indian fighter over those stretches of country now occupied by railroads, ranches and irrigated homes.
The Denver Republican prints the following interesting sketch of his life both before he came west in 1863, and after his arrival upon the plains, which were populated by buffalo and coyotes and terrorized by savages.
Few westerners have had a more thrilling and interesting life experience than Jackson Abney. He was a Kentuckian, being born in Lexington on March 4, 1826. For nineteen years he resided there and received the best education that Lexington could afford and this was very good. When 20 he moved to Missouri to engage in the dry goods business and afterward in stock raising. In the course of his migrations he arrived at St. Joseph, where he carried on the same business but he lived in Savannah, some miles down the Missouri river, where he conducted a large plantation, employing 150 slaves. Those were the times of the abolitionists.
Nowhere did they fight with more zeal in and about Kansas. Owning so many slaves naturally made Mr. Abney a mark for abolitionists and he had great difficulty in keeping them. The abolitionists would make frequent raids on his plantation and haul away the slaves to Kansas. By and by he had none left. In all that border warfare he took little part, having no inclination to fight his fellow men in such a cause. When matters became even more serious after the civil war broke out and his family was unsafe when he was away - as he was frequently absent on western expeditions - he moved to Denver with his wife and six children in 1863.
The emigration to Denver in '63 was not Mr. Abney's first appearance here: he had been on several visits before that. His business had latterly become that of a "freighter" and many were the long caravans he led across the plains. At least sixteen times he crossed them and almost each time at the peril of his life from Indians.
Mr. Abney built a residence on Arapahoe street where the Cooper-Hagus store now is and maintained an extensive corral and outfitting place at Blake and Fifteenth street. He was a conspicuous figure in the great Cherry creek flood in 1864 and was especially daring in the rescue of four negroes out of a tree. In all the city's Indian troubles he took a leading part and there was no more valiant defender of women and children and property than he.
In 1864 he was for a brief time in Nebraska, he became a contractor of the Union Pacific railway and followed the road as far as Cheyenne. After that he went into the business of stock raising in Wyoming conducting it with his brother, James C. Abney, and he was at one time offered $150,000 for his interest in it. His ranch was in the Pine Bluffs region. He built one of the first houses in Cheyenne.
He was married twice. In 1847 he married Miss May(Margaret) Moody of Missouri and in 1889 Mrs. L.A. Lawley of Denver. He had in all ten children, seven girls and three boys. Mrs. Florence Small of New Mexico, Mrs. Dr. Anna Grace Corey of Denver, James Abney, Mrs. C.B. Clay of Washington and Miss Margaret Abney survive him, and also his second wife.
Mr. Abney died of an acute attack of stomach trouble at the age of 70 years.
From Wyoming Tribune no. 89 March 17, 1896 page 4
Margaret Moody Abney (1828 - 1879)
Charles A Abney (____ - 1849)*
Julia Emmeline Abney (1851 - 1852)*
Mary Agnes Abney Clay (1858 - 1904)*
James M. Abney (1860 - 1930)*
Plot: Lot 208 Sec A
Created by: Eric Crow
Record added: Aug 19, 2008
Find A Grave Memorial# 29162754
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The Denver obit is likely embellished. Abney was a blacksmith in 1850 and a merchant/freighter in 1860. Had he been a plantation owner with 150 slaves, he would have vested interest to participate in the War. He did not. I can find no public record to sub...(Read more)|
Added: Nov. 25, 2011
Rest in peace Jackson|
Added: Apr. 5, 2011