21 January 2012

Breckenridge Heritage... Sisler & Nolan

In 1865 in Pennsylvania, John Sisler married Catherine Rhodes. He was the son of Michael, who was the son of Michael, whose father, William, appears to be one of the early settlers of Maryland, born there in 1715. John came from a long line of patriots, his grandfather Michael having served in the Revolution.

Just four years after their marriage, John and Catherine are in Breckenridge, Summit County, Colorado. They had at least two children there, Ada and Charles. Ada was born in the spring of 1869, and Charles was reported to be a native of "French Gulch", one of the many mining neighborhoods in Breckenridge (per the Summit County Journal, 8 Feb 1902, p. 5, which lists his marriage to Mary E. Bates.)

Listed as a miner in 1879, John held just over 5 acres of mineral property in 1882.  The Sisler Placer was in the Upper Blue Mining District, 1 mile from Breckenridge, in French Gulch.  By January of 1883, they had moved again, this time to Teller County, Colorado, where they purchased ranch land, now known as the Crystal Peak Ranch, totaling 160 acres. John passed away 8 Nov 1883.

His widow, Catherine, came back to Summit, and on 9 Nov 1886, married John Nolan, and is buried in Valley Brook Cemetery in Breckenridge alongside her husband. She is described as a "most efficient business woman", managing her second husbands mining claims after his death.

Headstones of Catherine and John Nolan,
Valley Brook Cemetery, Breckenridge, Colorado

See the entire genealogical story, including source citations, on the Summit County Trails to the Past website, under "Special Projects."

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