Violet Rogers Shelley, my great-grandmother, was born June 14, 1883 in Unity, Wisconsin.  She married George Bertrum Shelley in Perkinstown, Marathon County WI.  June 10, 1900.  Great-grandpa, George, was also born Sept. 23, 1878 in Unity, WI.   He died July 28, 1936 in Unity, WI. Violet Rogers Shelley died March 15,1968 at her home in Riplinger, WI.


Both Violet and George’s mothers died when they were very young. George’s mother, Ruth Johnson Shelley died when he was four years old. Violet’s mother, Sydney Coleman Rogers died of Tuberculosis  when she was only seven months old. 


Both were raised by family and in great grandma’s case I had to literally bring documentation to a family member in the 1980’s to prove that the “Grandma” Chapman she grew up believing was her natural grandmother was actually her great Aunt, Dorothy Elmendorf Chapman. 


George and Violet would have eleven children: Dorothy, Olive (my grandma), William, Sidney, Herbert, Leon, Mildred, Leslie, Dwight, Lyle, and Geraldine.





Growing up as a teenager, I became very close with my second cousin, Judy Schuh Underwood staying at her parents, Tony and Gerry Schuh’s farm west of Colby, WI. every summer from the time I was twelve till seventeen.


Of course to all my second cousins, Violet was Grandma Shelley whereas to me she was Great Grandma Shelley but I treasure all the memories I have of her because of these summers I spent in Clark County!


Sometime in the 1960’s the family began to have a little birthday party for Great Grandma Shelley every June.


After her death in 1968 the family continued to have this annual get together.  Each year a “volunteer” cousin sets up the Shelley Family Reunion somewhere in Wisconsin and although the family has continued to grow and now lives all over the United States, we meet each year with many coming from far and wide!


I am so proud to be descended from Violet Rogers Shelley!


Submitted 2006


By: Lani Bartelt (Great - Granddaughter of Violet Rogers Shelley)


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