CURTIS FAMILY NARRATIVE
Cora May Curtis (1878-1880) and Edna May Curtis (1881-1898) are sisters, buried together in the Gualala Cemetery. Their parents were Benjamin Appleton Curtis and Rebecca Humphreys who were married in Sonoma County on 15 December 1866 by Rev. Alexander Fairbairn, who was a preacher in Tomales, Marin County, California.
After migrating to Gualala, Benjamin worked as a teamster, and then a night watchman, presumably for the Gualala Mill. After Edna died, the family moved to Gilroy, Santa Clara County, California, where they had a farm. The parents were later joined in Gilroy by several of their children.
Rebecca Humphries’ family is unknown, except that her parents were immigrants from Ireland. However, Benjamin’s roots lie in New England, his direct ancestor was William Wentworth I, a first cousin of Anne Hutchinson, Rev. John Wheelwrights wife.
Rev. Wheelwright and Anne Hutchinson held religious opinions that were at odds with the established ministers of the Massachusetts Bay Colony and were kicked out. Along with William Wentworth I, and thirty-five other men that left the colony with them, Rev. Wheelwright established the Government of Exeter, New Hampshire on 4 July 1639, on land that the Reverend purchased from Native American tribes. The Wentworth family later established themselves in Wells, Maine, after the Government of Massachusetts claimed Exeter.
Benjamin and Rebecca Curtis had four other children, George Martin Curtis (1868-1938), Lillie Jane Curtis – wife of Frank Briones* (1870-1955), William James Curtis (1872 – unknown), and Charles Centennial Curtis (1876 – 1964).
*Frank Briones is the son of Minnie Briones, also buried at Gualala Cemetery
Research compiled by Kelly Richardson, Anchored Genealogy.