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Margret Wilson Keyes Reed
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Birth: Mar. 31, 1814
Union (Monroe County)
Monroe County
West Virginia, USA
Death: Nov. 25, 1861
San Jose
Santa Clara County
California, USA

Donner Party Survivor, Pioneer. Margret's first husband, Lloyd Backenstoe, died of cholera in 1834, leaving his widow with a baby daughter, Virginia. Her second husband, James Frazier Reed, had been engaged to her sister Elizabeth who also died in the same cholera epidemic. A year later Reed married Margret. She was ill, but was married as she lay in bed, with Reed standing beside her holding her hand. Margret Reed’s frail health was one of the reasons her husband wanted to move to California so he organized the "Reed and Donner emigrant party" that left Springfield, Sangamon County, Illinois on April 14, 1846. On October 5, 1846, her husband was banished from the train and she was left behind with the children while he went ahead to Sutter’s Fort for supplies. When disaster struck, however, she rallied and became, as her daughter Virginia said, "the bravest of the brave." She, along with her children, Virginia and Jimmy were rescued by the First Relief. On her way out of the mountain she met her husband who was leading the Second Relief and informed him that Patty and Tommy were still at Donner Lake. All her children survived the ordeal in the mountains and she had two more children, Charles Cadden and Willianoski “Willie” Yount. Margret's sick headaches never returned, but her health was not robust and she died at age 47. Margaret Streets in downtown San Jose is named after. 
 
Family links: 
 Spouse:
  James Frazier Reed (1800 - 1874)
 
 Children:
  Virginia Elizabeth Backenstoe Murphy (1833 - 1921)*
  Martha Jane Reed Lewis (1838 - 1923)*
  James Frazier Reed (1841 - 1901)*
  Thomas Keyes Reed (1843 - 1915)*
  Charles Cadden Reed (1848 - 1927)*
  Willianoski Yount Reed (1850 - 1860)*
 
*Calculated relationship
 
Burial:
Oak Hill Memorial Park
San Jose
Santa Clara County
California, USA
 
Created by: Debbie
Record added: May 12, 2005
Find A Grave Memorial# 10951090
Margret Wilson <i>Keyes</i> Reed
Added by: PL
 
Margret Wilson <i>Keyes</i> Reed
Added by: Debbie
 
Margret Wilson <i>Keyes</i> Reed
Cemetery Photo
Added by: Patti W.
 
 
Photos may be scaled.
Click on image for full size.


- D. Geiger
 Added: Sep. 1, 2012
We had in the Springfield, Ill., Morning Monitor, of the 30th ult., the following article about that old grave and Alcove Spring:Springfield, Ill., July 27, 1895Editor of the Monitor:Dear Sir--In your issue of the 23d is a communication from Blue Rapids, ...(Read more)
- nita austin
 Added: Apr. 16, 2012
The spelling "Margret" is Mrs. Reed's own. When Margret was born, Monroe County was in Virginia; it became part of West Virginia when that state was created in 1863. Margret Keyes' first husband, Lloyd Backenstoe, was a tailor who worked in her br...(Read more)
- nita austin
 Added: Apr. 15, 2012
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