A Genealogy of the Barnum, Barnam and Barnham Family

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A One-Name Study for the BARNUM/BARNHAM Surname



Notes for James William MCABEE


His name appears thus on his birth certificate.
James William "Doc" McAbee was the District Ranger (Head Guy) at the Sullivan Lake (Washington) Ranger District from 1907 to 1912, according to a plaque hanging in the office at Sullivan Lake, in what is now the Colville National Forest. That makes him the First District Ranger, since the Forest Service did not expand westward from Idaho until 1907. Two McAbees are listed in the 1910 county census, one was "Doc" and the other is unknown but listed as Assistant Forest Ranger. He was probably Doc's younger brother, Louis. In those days, there was usually only one permanent, full-time employee (Doc) as Ranger and one part-time or full-time Asst. Ranger. The two of them ran the show and laid down the law and the work assignments to the seasonal work force that built trails, cabins and camps and fought fires. In an old County Tax Map (date unknown), two McAbees are listed with land, a John L. McAbee (parents unknown, believed to have copy of death certificate) and a James W. McAbee (Doc himself). The John L. McAbee mentioned above was almost certainly Doc's father, John Louis McAbee (1842-1922).

The following are clips from a local newspaper The Newport Miner from the area of Sullivan Lake. The column names are listed by each entry.

November 3, 1906 - from "Ruby Items" "Doc" McAbee is here cruising for W.G. Cheney.

May 18, 1907 - "Ruby Items" "Doc" McAbee stopped in Ruby last Thursday night. He is looking after timber sales along the river.

November 29, 1907 - News from Sullivan. "Doc" MacAbee and family have moved to the river and now occupy the Eldred home. While "Doc" MacAbee and John Davidson were hunting in the mountains near Sullivan Lake last week, they routed a large bear from his winter lair and soon dispatched him with a well directed shot. Mr. McAbee also killed a large lynx last week.

December 12, 1907 - New from Sullivan. Mrs. "Doc" MacAbee was on the sick list a few days last week.

January 9, 1908 - "Tiger Talk" Doctor D. R. McAbee was a caller at the Tiger store on Monday (Note: D.R. probably stands for District Ranger).

February 20, 1908 - "News from Sullivan" "Doc" MacAbee is at Priest Lake, assisting in the erection of a boat house and dock to be used by the National Forest officers and employees. Mr. and Mrs. Geo. S. Henry and family and Mrs. D. I. Lykins, mother of Mrs. Henry, visited at the home of "Doc" MacAbee.

February 27, 1908 - "News from Sullivan" "Doc" MacAbee, who has been at Priest Lake for some time, has returned home.

March 26, 1908 - "News from Sullivan" Chas. Dearth, of Priest River, is spending a few days with "Doc" MacAbee. "Doc" MacAbee, who with his wife and daughter have spent the winter at the Eldred ranch near here, moved up on his ranch near Sullivan Lake, Friday.

April 16, 1908 - "News from Sullivan" "Doc" MacAbee was a Newport visitor the latter part of last week.

May 21, 1908 - News from Sullivan. "Doc" MacAbee, the efficient ranger, is improving his place by the addition of a new cabin.

June 25, 1908 - First Ball Game at Metaline. The first matched game of ball ever played at Metaline was pulled off last Sunday when the lead miners played with Ione. The game was snappy throughout with fast work on both sides. Ione tied the score in the ninth. The tenth was sensational. For Metaline, Howard struck out, followed by Long who hit a fly to right and was retired. R. Warner singled, Harry Wickham sent a long fly to center which could not be handled and Schulthies coming up to bat with two out and two on bases slammed out a hit to the tall timber which was good for a home run and decided the game. The score, 8 to 7 in favor of Metaline. The Metaline team is now ready to meet all comers and will try to make things interesting for them. Metaline batter was "Doc" McAbee and H. Vail; for Ione, C. Mansfield and F. Spaulding. A return game will be played at Ione, June 28.

June 25, 1908 - News from Sullivan. "Doc" McAbee has been assisting in some survey work near Metaline for some days.

August 27, 1908 - News from Sullivan. Mr. and Mrs. "Doc" McAbee are happy over the advent of a baby girl.

July 15, 1909 - National Forest News. A small timber sale was negotiated during the past month with the Inland Portland Cement Co., of Metaline. The greater part of the month, however was spent by Ranger McAbee (Sullivan Lake Rd), in company with Supervisor Miller, on boundary work north of Sullivan Lake. A trip was taken to cover the unsurveyed region lying between Sullivan creek and the international boundary. A strip of country six miles wide inside the forest was thoroughly explored, particular emphasis being given to the examination of the country north of Slate creek, which had never before been visited by a forest officer. The salary allotment for the Kaniksu has been announced as $15,200 for the new fiscal year. As this is a considerable increase over last year, it has been decided to devote $1500 to improvement work in Districts 4 (Newport) and 5 (Sullivan Lake). Accordingly, $500 has been allotted to Deputy Ranger Murray for the construction of the Usk trail, and he has been requested to select a crew of men for appointment as forest guards to build this trail. Deputy Ranger McAbee has been allotted $700 to build the Harvey Creek Trail and complete the Bunch Grass trail to Big Meadow, and has also been authorized to recommend the appointment of a crew of forest guards for this work. This manner of constructing improvements is more or less in the nature of an experiment, the success of which will depend entirely on the character of the men employed. For this, of course, the district ranger is held entirely responsible, as the men are appointed on his recommendation and he will be held accountable for their work.

August 12, 1909 - News of National Forest. During July work in district 5 (Sullivan Lake) was completed by District Ranger McAbee and Forest Ranger Swim, who examined three applications and ran out three ranger stations in unsurveyed territory, including a lot in the present townsite of Metaline, which it is hoped to have withdrawn for the use of the forest service. District Ranger McAbee was allotted $700 from the salary allotment of the Kaniksu National Forest, to be expended in the construction of a trail to connect the Sullivan Lake Road with the Big Meadow at the head of Harvey creek, and to complete the present LeClerc creek trail into the Big Meadow.

May 12, 1910 - Sullivan News. Mrs. James McAbee has returned home after an extended visit in the east.

August 24, 1911 - Sullivan News. Mrs. J.W. McAbee, living at the farther end of the lake, has been on the sick list the past week.

May 9, 1912 - Forest Office News Items. Doc McAbee, of Sullivan Lake, who for several years has served as ranger in the Kaniksu National Forest, and is one of the best known men in the local service, has resigned his position, and leaves soon to take up similar work in the Canadian service under W.N. Millar, formerly supervisor of the Kaniksu Forest.

August 1, 1912 - Forest Ranger Drowned. Lou McAbee, a forest ranger in the employ of the Kaniksu National Forest, stationed in the country east of Metaline Falls, was drowned in the waters of Sullivan Lake Saturday evening about 7:30 o'clock. Mr. McAbee and a party of friends were enjoying some sports on the lake, and McAbee and a friend were engaged in a log-rolling contest, when he slipped into the water. The body was recovered in a very short time, and strenuous efforts made to restore the spark of life. Those present worked over the body for more than two hours, until the arrival of Dr. Hiett from Metaline Falls, who pronounced a life extinct. McAbee was about 21 years old, a brother of "Doc" and Lambert, well known residents of the Sullivan Lake country. The body was shipped to the home of his parents in Wisconsin, on Monday.

August 1, 1912 - "Just Among Ourselves". R. E. Creager and family and Frank Irwin and family were at Metaline Falls over Sunday, guest of the McCool family. Mr. Creager and Mr. McCool were at Sullivan Lake at the time when forest ranger McAbee was drowned and assisted in the vain efforts to restore life to the young man.

In later years, “Doc” McAbee lived in Sniderville, Brown County, Wisconsin, on the hill by Apple Creek, at the corner of Highway 41 and County Line Road. That area is now (2006) a campground and golf course. When the highway was widened and the alignment changed, the house was moved from that location to the Charles Davis farm on Highway 41 (west side of the road) and their grandson John Davis, Jr. and his wife Dorothy lived in it. John was the son of John Sr., Charles and Ellen Davis' son. It still exists and is a typical Dutch style house, with dormers and a front porch.

From the Green Bay Press Gazette, page 140, 04-27-1961: James W. (Doc) McAbee, 84, 326 Marsh Street, West De Pere died early this morning in a local hospital. Mr. McAbee was born October 10, 1876 in the Town of Lawrence, and married the former Aimee Wiens in 1936. He is survived by his wife, 1 son Ray, Green Bay; 3 daughters: Mrs John Keller, Miss Helen, and Mrs Dan Redding, all of Denver, Colorado; 15 grandchildren and 5 great-grandchildren. Friends may call after 7 o'clock this evening at RFH where the rosary will be recited at 8 tonight and Thursday evening. Funeral services will be at 10 am Friday at Saint Joseph Church, De Pere, with the Rev. Blaise Peters officiating. Burial will be in Saint Patrick's Cemetery, Sniderville.

More About James William "Doc" McAbee: Fact 1: Buried: Saint Patrick's Cemetery, Sniderville, Wisconsin.

Notes for Aimee Wiens: Green Bay Press Gazette, McAbee, Mrs. Aimee. Thurs, 06-14-1979, died: 06-13-1979. Mrs. Aimee McAbee, 91 former Town of Lawrence resident, died Wednesday evening in a local nursing home. The former Aimee Wiens was born in Milwaukee on April 30, 1888. She was a registered nurse for many years at Hickory Grove Sanitarium. Mrs. McAbee was a member of the Guard of Honor and the Mission Society of Saint Joseph Church, De Pere. She married James (Doc) McAbee, Oct. 19, 1935. She was preceded in death by her husband on April 26, 1961 and also by one stepson, Quinton. Survivors include three stepdaughters, Mrs. Ione Keller, Mrs. Robert Miller and Helen McAbee, all of Dever, Co.; one stepson, Raymond McAbee of Green Bay, one sister, Mrs. Arthur (Esther) Pleyte, Milwaukee. Friends may call at Ryan Funeral Home, De Pere, from 5 to 9 this evening. Prayer service 8 tonight. Funeral 10:00 am Friday at the funeral home with the Rev. Blaise Peters officiating. Burial in Saint Patrick Cemetery, Sniderville. Parents: Adolph & Sarah (Riesen) Wiens.
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