Descendants of Lyman Jewel Inman

Generation No. 1

1. LYMAN JEWEL1 INMAN (ALLANA, CHARLES HENRYB, GEORGE WASHINGTONC) was born June 25, 1907 in Batchtown, Calhoun County Illinois, and died July 10, 1994 in Abingdon, Knox County Illinois. He married RUTH LEANOR PISTOLE.


Lyman's parents, Allen Inman and Ida Smith, were married but never lived together. Ida and Lyman lived with Ida's parents until about 1911. Then his Mother married a Frank Davis and they lived in St. Louis in a tent along the river-there was quite a few living in these tents in that day. That marriage did not last long and they moved back with Ida's parents. About the age of six Lyman remembers riding on a train from Alton to Pekin, IL, and his mother told him she had married Richard Sawyer and they were going to where he lived. She had no money to pay for Lyman's ticket, so they hid in the restroom of the train when the conductor came thru. Soon after their arrival the new family moved from Pekin to Kinston Mines on a john boat and into a cabin boat (house boat).

He recalls his Mother telling him at this residence that he had to go to school. While waking up a tall hill to reach school, he was approached by 4 boys wanting a fight. The boy he ended up fighting was Johnny Collins. He survived this fight and went to school in this area for 2 or 3 years.

They next moved to Mapleton, IL., where Richard worked for a farmer. Lyman's job was to provide fuel for the stove and he collected wood along the railroad tracks and at times the railroad men would throw coal off to him.

Ida and Richard had 4 boys, James 'Buss" born in Leroy, IL.; Bob born at Kingston Mines, IL.; Orvile born at Calhoun or Collinsville; and Tom born at Chataqua, IL. Richard never was happy having a stepson to provide for and didn't really want Lyman to live with them. Richard's main problem was that he didn't like to work and never was a steady provider.

At about the age of 8 or 9 his father, Allan Inman, took him for 2 or 3 months, but his stepmother, Cuba, so disliked him that Allan was afraid for Lyman's safety, so he was returned to his Mother.

About 1917, when Lyman was ten he spent the winter with Grandpa and Grandma Smith and began his first winter of trapping. It was at this age that he started providing for himself whenever he could and was able to live with relations if they could use his labor.

At the age of 13, or 1920, he lived with Uncle Willie for about a year and went to school. He then was hired by Aunt Annie's husband to cut bush out of a pasture, so he moved in with them (they were living about 5 miles south of Hardin, IL at the time). He mostly lived there until he was 16, and he remembers Aunt Annie always providing plenty to eat and the conforts of a good home. Lyman went to school from age 5 to age 16.

He worked for his Grandmother Inman's brother, Jim Wilson, one summer. Jim owned an island near Batchtown on which he had built a log house, 2 story, on stilts. About 1922 there was a big flood, and he remembers them crawling out their upstairs window and into a boat.

At age 16 Lyman went to batching, as he called it, or living alone as a single man and lived by himself in a shack in the woods. He made his living by trapping and hunting in the winter, fishing in the summer. He also dug and dried ginseng for which he made more money than picking apples, which only paid $1.50 per day. At that time the dried ginseng brought $16.00 per pound (todays price in 1993 is about $350.00 per pound.

He worked for a Harrison Simpson as a farm hand, worked at a dynamite mill in Grafton and also as an underground coal miner. He would have other single fellows move in with him at times.

About 1927 he and Bill Hutch and Ted Funk came up to Berwick, IL., by train from Alton to Abingdon. They had heard that work was easier to find up north and paid better. They reached Abingdon on Saturday night, stayed the night in a hotel and walked about 8 miles to Berwick with mud to the top of their boots. By Monday evening they all three had jobs.

He worked for Clair Walker from Spring to harvest and then went back to Batchtown for Winter trapping and hunting. He did the same in the year 1928. Then in 1929 he and three other fellows joined a thrasing crew which ran from Kansas north to North Dakota. When the snow and cold became gruesome in North Dakota they returned to Batchtown, and he again was trapping and hunting thru the winter.

In 1930 he came back to Berwick with Bill Hutch and worked the summer for Elbert shelton. He and Ruth went with another couple down to Batchtown for the 4th of July on a train from Beardstown to Alton. They came back and were married August 2, 1930.

The couple went to Batchtown to live. Lyman worked as a guide for a hunding and fishing club at Deer Point, across from what is now the Piere Marquette state park. He would take guest fishing in the summer and duck hunting in the fall. They at that time used live ducks as decoys by tying a weight to their leg so that they would stay in the vicinity of the duck blind. They then threw corn on the surface of the water to lure the wild ducks.

He sang at the club and some of the members thought he should try-out for the radio. He did go to an audition, was chosen with one other person out of about 30. However, they had to find a sponsor for him, and he lost interest in the time it took for this to happen. At that time there was prohibition, so he often was a partaker of bootleg wiskey. He noticed that he was craving the liquor and made the decision that it would be better to leave the club and the alcohol.

He then went to work with Uncle Wiley at the saw mill for a time, and then did some commercial fishing. The business was especially good on Friday, as there was a big Catholic population in this area. he also at this time drove a truck from Batchtown to St. Louis. While living in Batchtown, Joan was born July 27, 1932.

Ruth did not enjoy the river life and wanted to move back to Berwick around 1934. He got jobs mowing the Berwick cemetery and dug grave. Then he worked for Bob Giddings and the work was very hard from about 3am until 7pm at night. He often followed a team of horses and a harrow for a full day and could not use his legs to walk home at night, so Bob had to bring him home. Larry was born March 14, 1937 at this tenant house which was about 2 miles North of Berwick. He finally decided that he could not handle working this hard and they moved back to Berwick and he started work for Silas Ray as a repairman, fixing fences and odd jobs and then trapping in the winter


Note about his mother's death. She died when in the hospital of a fractured hip, and Larry's says it was after medication was given her, and they always thught that is what killed her. She fell on the ice at the back door of Lyman's house. Ida was a very pretty woman and did have man trouble. She first married Allan Inman, but they never lived together. We know little of her second marriage, except that she lived in St. Louis. She then married Richard Sawyer and had three sons by him. Richard was never a steady provider. She was a waitress and housekeeper.


Cemetery: Berwick Cemetery

Member of: Berwick Baptist Church

Occupation: Laborer/Night Watchman/Illinois Game Warden

Children of LYMAN INMAN and RUTH PISTOLE are:

i. HELEN JOAN2 INMAN, b. July 27, 1932, Batchtown, Calhoun County Illinois; m. JOHN ROBERT MCVEY; b. January 18, 1934, Warren County, Illinois; d. June 20, 1979, Galesburg, Knox County Illinois.


Cemetery: Berwick Cemetery


iii. LARRY ALLAN INMAN, b. March 14, 1937, Berwick, Illinois; m. BETTY MAY WAINMAN.