Obituary: Hester Jane (Ingram) Hicks

Headstone: Hester (Ingram) Hicks

My ggg-grandmother Hester Jane (Ingram) Hicks was born in Crowan, Cornwall, England in 1822, and died on October 24, 1889, in Scales Mound, Jo Daviess Co, Illinois.

When she was 20 years old, she married Henry Hicks. The marriage took place in Cornwall, England, on March 28, 1842.   According to her son Alfred’s biography published in The History of the Yakima Valley, Washington, Comprising Yakima, Kittitas and Benton Counties (1919) V.II, page 645: “They were married in their native country and their wedding journey consisted of a trip to the United States. Making their way across the country, they settled in Jo Daviess county, Illinois, about 1845, becoming pioneer residents of that district, where they spent their remaining days.”

Hester is buried in Scales Mound Township Cemetery.Her obituary was published in the Galena Daily Gazette on October 24, 1889.

Obituary: Hester (Ingram) Hicks

Transcription of obituary:

Death of an Old Settler

Mrs. Hester Hicks, who lived near Scales Mound, died this morning, after a protracted illness, aged 67 years. She had resided in Jo Daviess county for forty-five years, and was the mother of Mr. James Hicks, who is well known in Galena and other portions of the country.  She was an excellent lady and who was much esteemed by those who knew her worth. Three sons and five daughters survive her. Interment will be made in the Scales Mound cemetery. Notice of the funeral hereafter.

5 Comments Add yours

  1. Nigel Hicks says:

    Hi Kathryn – it would appear that we are related. Our common ancestor was Thomas Hick(e)s who came from Crowan, Cornwall, U.K. If my memory is correct, he died about 1729-32. He was my ggggg grandfather and was, as far as I know, a very successful Cornish mine captain. His wife was Sarah Row, daughter of Thomas Row. He had one brother, William, and a sister (name forgotten). Near to where I live in Kernow (Cornwall), you can still see the remains of Wheal (the Cornish word for ‘mine’) Sarah, the mining venture where our common ancestor worked and toiled as a mine captain, under conditions that today would be regarded as intolerable. In the same area, there are various geological features that are clearly named after the Hicks family. Kemereugh wyth!

    1. Kathryn says:

      Hi Nigel,

      Unfortunately, I don’t know much about the Hicks family in Cornwall. My limited knowledge stops at Henry Hicks (~1771-1823), son of Thomas Hicks and Margaret Jenken.

      Do you know if the Hicks ancestry has been documented and made available online?


      1. Nigel Hicks says:

        Hi Kathryn

        I understand that your Henry Hicks had a brother, John Hicks. John was my ggg grandfather, so we are most definitely related. The Hicks name is a Celtic name which, in its original form would have been ‘Map Hecca”, or, in English, ‘Son of Richard’ i.e. the same as the English ‘Richardson. Although it is encountered throughout the British Isles, the name Hicks, and its variants are more prevalent in Cornwall, the further west you go, the greater the incidence.

        There are, I think, at least three more remote branches of ‘Hicks’ encountered considerably further east in England and these three branches were comparatively affluent, unlike their Cornish counterparts. In an around Gloucestershire, the Hicks are found as the Hicks-Beach family and in that case, if memory serves me correctly, the most famous of these was Sir Ellis Hicks who was living in the 14th century, closely followed by “Hicks Pasha’ who was General Gordon’s second in command at Karthoum in the Sudan (of ‘Mad Mahdi fame). This family’s pedigree is well-known and is documented in Mrs Susan Hicks-Beaches tome, Hicks and Hicks-Beach, a Cotswold Family (1908). The other branches are found in Yorkshire and in the London area. Although distantly related to us, they will share a common ancestor with us some way back in the mists of time.

        That having been said, the original Hicks were most definitely not of English extraction, being entirely members of what were once known as the ‘ancient Britons’, in this case of Cornish Celtic origin.

        In so far as ‘our’ branch of the family is concerned, my family and my one brother’s family are the sole remaining members of the Crowan Hicks still living in Cornwall. I have encountered only one other family member who, if I recall correctly, shares the same origin as yourself and who now lives in San Diego. He has a connection to the Hicks who emigrated to Illinois, particularly Evanston and also Scales Mound but, as far as I know has lost contact with them. A few years ago, my father (now deceased) corresponded with a LLoyd Cousins who ran a tour business from Evanston who was interested in his genealogy and quite knowledgeable also. I think his family still reside in the same area. Perhaps, you know them?

        Our own Hicks family in west Cornwall is linked to the ‘Gwavas’ and ‘Chiverton’ families. This we know on account that the arms of each of these families is very similar. Indeed, I recall my father telling me about the research that his father had endeavoured to complete before his death in 1943 in which he was convinced that the ‘Gwavas’ name was awarded to a fellow by the name of ‘Hicks’ during a titling tournament in the time of Elizabeth 1st in the 16th century. Titling is more commonly known as ‘jousting’. Only a short distance from where I live is a tiny settlement called ‘Gwavas’, a Cornish place-name that means ‘summer pasture’ and presumably this settlement gave its name to the successful combatant in the tournament.

        Finally, in answer to your query……apart from the Hicks-Beach book (of very limited use to us), I am not aware of any formal online family tree. I do have a certain amount of information on our branch but, unfortunately, it is not readily to hand. If you are interested, I will try to dig up what I’ve got! If you are interested in the locality, then I can provide you with mountains.

        I am delighted to have met you and am excited that my family are not the sole remaining members of the Crowan Hicks. I assume that you are able to access my email address. If so, please feel free to contact me via this way, at any time. I look forward very much to hearing from you soon.

        Gans gorhemmynow a’n gwella dheworth Kernow,


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