Christina <I>Pless</I> Finger

Christina Pless Finger

Lawrence County, Indiana, USA
Death 7 Mar 1907 (aged 88)
Arlington, Tarrant County, Texas, USA
Burial Arlington, Tarrant County, Texas, USA
Memorial ID 33598678 · View Source
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History of Texas
together with a
Biographical History of
Tarrant and Parker Counties
page 374
Mrs Cristena Finger, widow of Louis Finger, is one of the venerable pioneer women of Tarrant county, Texas. She was born in Lawrence county, Indiana, June 19, 1818, and her girlhood was passed on her father's farm in that county. In 1836 she was united in marriage to Louis Finger. After their marriage they settled on a farm in Indiana where they continued to reside until 1846, when they emigrated to Texas. The journey to Texas was made with horse teams, and they were six weeks en route. Upon their arrival in Tarrant county, they located near her present home on their headright of 640 acres. At this writing she is the only person in the county still living on land thus secured. Soon after their settlement here Mr. Finger enlisted in the Government service for duty on the frontier or to go to Mexico if needed. As he was not needed in the latter service he remained on the frontier until early in 1849, when he was mustered out. It was about this time that the California gold fever spread over the country and many of the soldiers upon leaving the ranks started for the new El Dorado, Mr. Finger among the rest. He spent two years and a half in California, engaged in mining all the time and meeting with some success. Although he mined considerable gold, the price of living was high and the miners were in constant danger from the hostile Indians, and, after all, his experience there was not of the brightest.

During her husband's absence Mrs. Finger had many difficulties to contend with, the care and support of her family and the development of the new farm all devolving upon her, and right bravely did she meet and overcome every obstacle that presented itself. She did weaving and washing and any kind of work she could get. The soldiers being here, there was plenty of money in the country. It was some years before there was much farming in this locality. Mrs. Finger herself cut down trees and split wood and with the aid of the children, who helped her to carry it in, she provided their own fuel. She hired some breaking done and also hired some rails split and hauled. She herself made the fence; and when her husband returned from California she was ready to do some farming. Up to this time the only stock she kept was cattle and hogs, the thieving Indians making it impossible for her to keep horses. Afterward a treaty was formed with the Indians and they became more friendly. Straggling bands, however, would occasionally cross the country and make raids on the settlers and carry off their horses. As the years passed by, Mr. Finger, aided and encouraged by his noble wife, developed his land into a valuable property, and here they reared their family to occupy honorable and useful positions in life. For a number of years he served as Magistrate. He was a man of the strictest integrity and was recognized as a leading and influential citizen. After a useful and active life, he passed away January 21, 1887.

Mrs. Finger still resides at the old homestead. Of her we further record that she is a daughter of Joseph Pless, a native of North Carolina. Her father moved with his family to Indiana at an early day, and while en route to that State they overtook Mr. Finger's father and family who were likewise moving from North Carolina to Indiana. The two families journeyed on together and both settled on farms in Lawrence county, their homes being about two miles and a half apart. Mr. Finger's father followed the trade of wagonmaker in connection with his farming operations. Thus it happened that Louis Finger and Christena Pless grew up together and, as above stated, were married in 1836. About the time of their marriage they united with the Methodist Episcopal Church, of which he remained a consistent member up to the time of his death. Mrs. Finger still lives a devoted member of the church, her life, as that of her worthy husband, being adorned by many Christian graces. They had eight children, four born in Indiana and four in Texas, a brief record of them being as follows: Mary J., wife of William Harrison, a prominent farmer of Tarrant county; Peter, who died while in the service of the late war; Susan, wife of R. C. Ford, now living at the old homestead; Rachel, wife of Joseph Tolliver, a prominent farmer of this county; John, engaged in farming in Hall county, Texas; Francis, who died a the age of nine years; Joseph, a farmer of this county; and George W., an attorney at law, now in the Land Office at Austin.


Christena Finger was born in Lawrence Co., Indiana, June 17, 1818, and died in her old home near Arlington March 7 at 7:40 p.m. 1907. Age 88 years, 8 months, 20 days. She had been very poorly for over 12 months, her faith was strong and her hope bright.

Often she expressed an anxiety to depart from this life and be at rest. At evening time she often said, "I am glad another day is gone and I am one day nearer home." She was of a cheerful spirit and did not look on the gloomy side.
Christena Pless was married to Lewis Finger Oct. 25, 1838. They moved to Texas in 1846 and soon settled on the headright homestead where she died, having lived on this place about 60 years.

Her husband and 4 children preceded her to the world beyond. Four children remains as follows, Joe Finger on home place, Mrs. Rachel Toliver of Arlington, John C. Finger and Susan Ford both of Memphis Texas.

Grandma Finger was a charter member of the Arlington Methodist church organized first at the old West log school house on place now owned by Dave Martin, then the church organization was moved to Johnson Station, and later to West Fork each 3 miles from Arlington and finally to Arlington in 1875.

We had hoped that she would live to see the new church completed but she finished a long eventful life and is gone to the Golden City of love where all is joy for ever more.
Her Pastor, Ed. R. Wallace


Grandma Finger one of the oldest, if not the oldest, citizen in this part of the country passed peacefully to her reward on the 7th inst. at the ripe old age of 88 years.
She had lived on the same farm near here for 60 years, raising a large family of excellent citizens, one of whom Hon. George W. Finger was at one time Land Commissioner of this state.

Her husband and 4 children had preceded her to the grave, while 4 survive her.

The remains were interred in Arlington cemetery on the 8th, the funeral being conducted by Rev. Ed. R. Wallace pastor of the Methodist church, of which she was always a leading member.

The life of a great and good woman has thus ended, leaving an impress for good behind.

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  • Maintained by: lori brackenbury
  • Originally Created by: timcdfw
  • Added: 6 Feb 2009
  • Find a Grave Memorial 33598678
  • Find a Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Christina Pless Finger (20 Jun 1818–7 Mar 1907), Find a Grave Memorial no. 33598678, citing Arlington Cemetery, Arlington, Tarrant County, Texas, USA ; Maintained by lori brackenbury (contributor 47134499) .