James Edmund Fairfield

b. 20 July 1870, d. 3 September 1952
James Edmund Fairfield|b. 20 Jul 1870\nd. 3 Sep 1952|p147.htm|James Monroe Fairfield|b. 30 Apr 1826\nd. 17 May 1895|p2964.htm|Jane Elizabeth Thurber|b. 15 Jan 1827\nd. 16 Sep 1915|p2965.htm|Asa Fairfield|b. 28 Jan 1797\nd. 4 Oct 1868|p5218.htm|Olive Stone|b. 18 Aug 1795\nd. 6 Sep 1864|p7524.htm|Benjamin W. H. Thurber|b. 24 Jun 1800\nd. b 1860|p7472.htm|Mary P. King|b. 19 Mar 1803|p7471.htm|

Father of Ruth Minerva Fairfield.
Great-grandfather of Laura Jane Munson.
Family Background:
Fairfield and Allied Families
Appears on charts:
Pedigree for Ruth Minerva Fairfield
Click to view thumbnails
Ed Fairfield
     James Edmund Fairfield was born on 20 July 1870 in Fort Wayne, Allen County, Indiana.1 He was the son of James Monroe Fairfield and Jane Elizabeth Thurber. He married first Catharine Minerva Cordrey, daughter of Francis Cordrey and Christiana Catharina Gramlich, on 4 March 1896 at Fort Wayne, Allen County, Indiana.2,3,4 He married second Pearl May Garver on 6 March 1901 at Fort Wayne, Allen County, Indiana.1,5 He died on 3 September 1952 in Houston, Harris County, Texas, at age 82.1 The Texas Death Index gives the date of his death as 2 September 1952.6 He was buried in Houston, Harris County, Texas.7
     Ed, youngest child and only son to survive childhood, grew up in Fort Wayne. As a young adult he worked for the railroad, and at age 25 married Minerva Cordrey who died three years later from complications of childbirth. Their only child, Ruth, told her daughter, Ruth Anna, that there was an older son who died at birth, and that Minerva was told she should have no more children. If true there was another child, his birth is not recorded in Fort Wayne. (This has little meaning as birth records were poorly kept at that time). But, whatever the facts may be, Ruth always felt that her father blamed her for her mother's death.

     Ed remarried in 1901, and while still living in Fort Wayne, he and Pearl had two daughters. Ruth, who barely knew her father, was living with Ed's sister Sadie and her family in St. Louis. It was supposed to be a permanent arrangement, and there was quite a "to do" when in 1909, Ed decided Ruth should move with his new family to Texas. It caused a permanent, or almost permanent, rift between he and Sadie, who by some accounts never spoke to her brother again. (Ruth Anna now says she thinks they may have reconciled very late in life).

     The preceding year, Ed had bought land along the Brazos River in Brazoria County, Texas, perhaps unseen, as the transaction was in Fort Wayne. He left for Texas in 1908, and there built a new home (probably the only one in Brazoria County with a cellar) before sending for Pearl and the children. They left Fort Wayne by train to meet Ed, with Ruth worrying all the while about how "Papa" would recognize them.

     Ed was by all accounts an excellent farmer, his main crops being cotton and corn. He was a stern man of few words who showed little affection, but a hard worker who expected the same from his children. It seems rather strange considering he was supposedly "spoiled rotten" in his youth by his six older sisters who called him "Cap." His granddaughter, Ruth Anna, says he was frugal, but was a good provider who always availed himself of the latest technology. He was the first or second in that part of Brazoria County to have electricity run to his house, to buy a car, and to get a telephone.

     In the writer's memory, Grandpa was a very old man sitting silently in a chair at his home in Lochridge. My mother says I probably don't remember him before he had a stroke. He died at a hospital in Houston, and his daughter, Ruth, swore that he kicked at her on his deathbed.

Additional Data
Edward Fairfield appeared on the 1 June 1880 Federal Census of Lake township, Allen County, Indiana, in the household of his parents, James and Jane Fairfield.8 Click to view image

James E. Fairfield appeared on the 1 June 1900 Federal Census of Wayne township, Allen County, Indiana, in the household of Edith O. Fairfield, his sister, with his sister Anne M. Fairfield.9 Click to view image

In Fort Wayne, Allen County, Indiana, on 13 April 1908, James Edmund Fairfield bought 160 acres in Brazoria County, Texas, from Eliza J. Sturgeon, Ralph W. Sturgeon, Clay Carrington, and Mate L. Carrington.10

Ed and Pearle Fairfield appeared on the 15 April 1910 Federal Census of Brazoria County, Texas, enumerated 26 April 1910. Their children Susan Della and Helen Elizabeth were listed as living with them, as were Ed's daughter from a previous marriage, Ruth, and his mother Jane Fairfield.11 Click to view image

James E. and Pearl H. Fairfield appeared on the 1 January 1920 Federal Census of Sandy Point, Brazoria County, Texas, enumerated 12 March 1920. Their children Della, Elizabeth, James and Lillian were listed as living with them.12 Click to view image

James E. and Pearl A. Fairfield appeared on the 1 April 1930 Federal Census of Brazoria County, Texas, enumerated 7 April 1930. Their children James R., Lillian and Robert were listed as living with them.13 Click to view image

Child of James Edmund Fairfield and Catharine Minerva Cordrey

Children of James Edmund Fairfield and Pearl May Garver


  1. [S496] Family data, Asa Fairfield Bible, unknown bible title (n.p.: n.pub., unknown publish date); original owned in 1996 by Joe Ed Fairfield (Rosharon, TX).
  2. [S3] Allen County Marriage Book 21: 534, County Clerk's Office, Fort Wayne, Indiana.
  3. [S802] Additional Society, The Fort Wayne News, Fort Wayne, Indiana, 5 March 1896, 4, col. 7.
  4. [S944] Francis Cordrey pension application file; 137007 Certificate 96353; Pension and Bounty-Land Warrant Application Files, 1800-1960; Records of the Veterans Administration, Record Group 15; National Archives, Washington.
  5. [S3] Allen County Marriage Book 24: 382.
  6. [S1132] Texas Department of Health, Texas Death Indexes, 1903-2000 (Austin: Texas Department of Health, State Vital Statistics Unit, unknown publish date), James Edmund Fairfield entry citing Certificate 44591.
  7. [S32] Interview with Ruth Anna (Horn) Munson (Mrs. Joe U. Munson; Angleton, Texas), by Laura Munson Cooper. Transcript held in 2003 by Cooper (1804 Holm Oak St.; Arlington, TX 76012-5608).
  8. [S773] James Fairfield household, 1880 U.S. Census, Allen County, Indiana, population schedule, Aboit twp, enumeration district (ED) 105, sheet 10B, dwelling 100, family 100; National Archives micropublication T9, roll 264.
  9. [S776] Edith O. Fairfield household, 1900 U.S. Census, Allen County, Indiana, population schedule, Wayne twp, enumeration district (ED) 38, sheet 16A, dwelling 395, family 269; National Archives micropublication T623, roll 359.
  10. [S783] Brazoria County Deeds, 85: 392, 393, County Clerk's Office, Angleton, Texas.
  11. [S50] Ed Fairfield household, 1910 U.S. Census, Brazoria County, Texas, population schedule, enumeration district (ED) 7, sheet 12A/46, dwelling 161, family 161; National Archives micropublication T624, roll 1534.
  12. [S38] James E. Fairfield household, 1920 U.S. Census, Brazoria County, Texas, population schedule, Precinct 8, Sandy Point, enumeration district (ED) 11, sheet 4B, dwelling 85, family 91; National Archives micropublication T625, roll 1774.
  13. [S37] James E. Fairfield household, 1930 U.S. Census, Brazoria County, Texas, population schedule, Precinct 8, west of Oyster Creek, enumeration district (ED) 20-4, sheet 1A/252, dwelling 1, family 1; National Archives micropublication T626, roll 2301.