I am fortunate to have a photo of my 3rd great grandmother, Hannah Eliza Willson who married Samuel Longcor in Sussex County, New Jersey, where they lived their whole lifetime.
I like the photo because she seems to have a slight smile on her face and her eyes are clear and looking directly out at you. She has no earrings. Her hair is parted in the middle and arranged neatly in a braid at the back of her head. A light, ruffled collar peaks out from the dark top she’s wearing.
Like a lot of women of her generation, most of her life is tied to her husband, Samuel. However, I do know more about her than some other female family members. Hannah Eliza was born 10 August 1828 in New Jersey to parents John Willson and Mary Ayers. I haven’t yet found any siblings but it seems highly unlikely that she was an only child.
Hannah Eliza married Samuel Longcore sometime before their first child, Hannah Jane, was born in January of 1851, before the distant rumblings of the Civil War. Hannah and Samuel had three children:
- Hannah Jane Longcor, born January 1851
- Mary F. Longcor, born about 1858
- George W. Longcor, born about 1861
Hannah lived the life of a farmer’s wife in rural Sussex County with all the hard work that meant at the time: preparing the meals, lugging wood into the house, tending the fire, keeping the family’s clothing clean and in good repair, cooking the meals, milking the cows, cultivating a garden, etc.
Hannah passed away at 63 years old, about five years before her husband Samuel. She got to meet her grandchildren; Belle, Charles, Samuel, Nellie and Audrey Hunt, all children of her daughter Hannah Jane and her husband William Henry Hunt. Hannah Eliza died 19 June 1892 of paralysis although it is unclear from the death certificate what sort of paralysis it was. Dr. J. C. Strader, M.D. was the medical attendant and was also the same family doctor mentioned in many of the pension documents for Hannah Eliza’s son-in-law William Henry Hunt in his quest to get an invalid pension related to his service in the Civil War.
Hannah Eliza (Willson) Longcor was was 63 years, 10 months and 9 days old at the time of her death. She was laid to rest in the Newton Cemetery.
 New Jersey Department of State, death certificate L58 (1892), Eliza Longcor; New Jersey State Archives, Trenton.
 1900 U. S. census, Sussex County, New Jersey, population schedule, Lafayette Township, ED 169, p. 7B (penned), dwelling 159, family 170, William H. Hunt; digital image, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 30 September 2011); citing NARA microfilm publication T623, roll 995.
 1870 U. S. census, Warren County, New Jersey, population schedule, Frelinghuysen, p. 22 (penned), dwelling 166, family 179, Samuel Longcor; digital image, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 01 October 2011); citing NARA microfilm publication M593, roll 892.
 New Jersey Department of State, death certificate L58 (1892), Eliza Longcor.
While I remember meeting my great aunt Bernice Wood, another great aunt Belle (Hunt) Knox died some years before I was born.
Belle S. Hunt was born on 01 August 1869 in Newton, Sussex County, New Jersey. She was the first of five children born to William Henry Hunt and Hannah Jane Longcor. The William Henry Hunt family consisted of the following children:
- Belle S. Hunt, born 01 August 1869
- Charles Lincoln Hunt, born 11 August 1871
- Samuel Wilson Hunt, born 29 May 1874
- Nellie Garfield Hunt, born 12 April 1880
- Audrey Romine Hunt, born 14 March 1888
When she was 23 years old, Belle married William M. Knox on 24 September 1892 in Lafayette, Sussex County, New Jersey by the Reverend Frank Hunsinger. Belle and William (know as Uncle Billy to family members) were unable to have children of their own so they adopted a boy. Their son, Julius C. Know, was born in 1893 and died at the age of only 27 in 1920.
Belle and William Knox lived closed to Belle’s sister, Audrey (Hunt) Strait, and niece Bernice (Strait) Wood along Sussex Street in Newton. Uncle Billy had a chicken coup in their back yard and raised chickens for years.
Belle and William Knox celebrated their 50th anniversary in September of 1942. An article in the Newark Evening News stated:
“Married 50 Years Today” – Special to the Newark News. – NEWTON – Mr. and Mrs. William Knox of 44 Pine street are celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary today. They were married at the home of Mrs. Knox’s parents, Mr. and Mrs. William H. Hunt of Lafayette by Rev. Frank Hunsinger. Mrs. Knox was Miss Bella Hunt. They have lived at Newton since their marriage and in the house where they now reside for 46 years. Knox was born in Scranton, Pa., the son of William Knox and Mary Lewis Knox. Mrs. Knox was born in Newton. He is 76 and she is 74. Both enjoy good health and take an active interest in present day affairs. They have no children. Knox was employed byt he H. W. Merriam Shoe Co. 46 years, retiring when the company moved to Baltimore several years ago. Tonight the couple will have a party of relatives and friends at their home in honor of the anniversary.
Belle’s husband passed away in 1951 but Belle lived another 10 years to pass away in 1961. They are buried in Newton Cemetery in the same plot with their son, Julius.
 William H. Hunt (Pvt., Co. I, 70th NY. Inf., Civil War), pension no. W.C. 852,451; Civil War and Later Pension Files; Department of Veterans Affairs, Record Group 15; National Archives, Washington, D.C. This is William Henry Hunt’s full pension file which includes all documents in the file related to soldier’s claim (SO) no. 359,438, widow’s claim (WO) no. 1,117,693, widow’s certificate (WC) no. 852,451, and soldier’s invalid claim (Inv.) no. 424,023.
 “Married 50 Years Today,” anniversary, Newark Evening News, 24 September 1942.
 Newton Cemetery (19 Lawnwood Ave, Newton, New Jersey), Julius C. Knox marker; photograph taken by Jodi Lynn Strait, 19 May 2008.
 Newton Cemetery (19 Lawnwood Ave, Newton, New Jersey), Bella Hunt marker; photograph taken by Jodi Lynn Strait, 19 May 2008.