Sunday, November 27, 2011

Sunday's Obituary - Edna Vina Beck Coffman

Edna Vina Beck Coffman was one of my great grandmother Effie's many sisters, and was my grandmother Lola's aunt. Edna was the sixth child (and fourth daughter) of Wells Marcus Beck and Emma Mayben Beck. She was born In Prairie Home, Shelby County Illinois on 1 February 1876.

Based on information I've found online, I am only able to present her dates of birth, marriage and death, along with the names of her spouse, children (Rose, Elzie, Everett and Hazel), parents and siblings, as well as where she was living during the various census years. As with the others in my tree, I do hope to find pictures of Edna and her family.

At twenty years of age, Edna married William Wesley "Wes" Coffman in Shelby County, Illinois. By the 1900 census, they were living in Penn, Shelby County, IL, with two young children. By 1910 census, they were living in San Antonio, Texas with their four children, and 1910 was the year they went to Laramie.  By 1920, Edna and Wes were living in Laramie, WY, with three of their four children. In 1930, Edna and Wes were living in Laramie with their son Elzie.

I did find a memorial on for Lester Coffman (1898-1904) and the memorial listed his parents as Wesley W. and Edna Beck Coffman. The burial is at Prairie Home Cemetery in Shelby County, IL, where many of the Becks are buried. I did not find a child named Lester on the 1900 census, though, so I checked another great resource for Illinois, IRAD (Illinois Regional Archives Depository) and checked the pre-1916 deaths. I did find a Leslie Coffman that died 12 Oct 1904 in Pickaway Twp, Shelby County, IL. The database lists Leslie as a 2 month old male. I also found a newspaper article on from 18 Oct 1904 announcing the death of the "babe of Mr. and Mrs. Wesley Coffman". I will have to verify this by ordering a copy of the death certificate. I could not find it on

Edna moved to Denver, CO in 1943 and died there on 19 Sept 1948. She is buried with Wes at Greenhill Cemetery, Laramie, WY.

Transcription of the obituary:

Mrs. Edna Coffman Dies in Denver

Mrs. Edna V. Coffman, 72, former Laramie resident, died at noon yesterday in Denver following a brief illness. She had lived there for the last five years.

Mrs. Coffman was born Feb. 1, 1875 in Decatur, Ill. She came here in 1910 with her husband, the late William W. Coffman, Union Pacific Engineer who died in 1933. She was a member of the Christian Science church.

She is survived by three children; Mrs. O. C. Dinelly, Laramie; Mrs. L. M. Cole, Denver;  and E. E. Coffman, Denver; three grandchildren: Mrs. Duane Cordiner, Laramie; Lloyd Cordiner, Denver, and Delano Dinelly, Laramie; five great grandchildren and a sister, Wade Thompson and one brother, Edgar Beck, both of Decatur, Ill.

Funeral services will be held Wednesday at 2 p.m. at the Stryker mortuary. Pallbearers will be H. B. Pope, Henry Larson, J. R. Sullivan, James H. White, Joe Vesley and Walter Fredericks.

The Laramie (Wyo.) Republican-Boomerang, Monday, 20 Sept 1948


  1. For a post that started out sounding apologetic for not having much information, you really found a lot.

  2. I'm cracking up, Wendy! You are right, but I do dream of the day when I can write these posts and include pictures of the people and even elaborate more on their lives or personalities.