211 – Births, Marriages, and Deaths

The Civil War was over. John Riley had been ordered to active service for a short time, perhaps even multiple times. But for the most part, he was home. And busy.

Sedalia family – c. 1870

During the Civil War years 1861-1865, John and Ann Riley had three more children – Lily, Will, and Agnes.

Nine kids

And by 1870, two more children were born, bringing the total to nine. Agnes is missing from the census, but she’s around somewhere.

John and Ann Riley family – 1870 US Census

We don’t have any citation about the type of dwellings on the Riley farm, but we can guess the house was crowded. There were plenty of helping hands for farm work and domestic chores.

During the 70s, the children would come of age.

Will Riley

Will Riley had been born September 9, 1863, just a month before his father John was ordered to active service during Shelby’s Raid in the Civil War.

Will grew up on the family farm near Georgetown with his eight siblings. During his youth, he worked on the farm.


By 1880, John and Ann Riley were in their 50s. Mary Ann, 30, was living at home. Agnes, 14, and Lizzie, 12, were in school. John was age 10. Will, age 16, was working on the farm.

1880 US Census – John and Ann Riley family – Pettis County, Missouri

The next generation

The decade of the 80s signaled the passing of the torch to the next generation.

David Riley didn’t marry and lived around Sedalia and later Kansas City.

John Riley Jr. didn’t marry, and lived in Sedalia, sometimes with Mary Ann and David.

John Riley Sr.’s sister Margaret Hart moved to Sedalia in 1880 and lived with her daughter Mary.

In September 1881, Kate Riley married Edward G. Cassidy. Ed, or E.G., was born in Ireland, and had come to Sedalia in 1870. He became one of the city’s notable businessmen, and a mentor for Kate’s younger brother Will Riley.

In 1881, Will left the farm and moved to Sedalia. He went to work for sister Kate’s husband, Ed Cassidy. Cassidy and Riley would become prominent in mercantile, liquor, and beer distribution.

Lizzie Riley married John Dugan in 1896 and lived in Clinton, Missouri. They had lots of kids.

Gored by a vicious bull

On Friday afternoon, October 20, 1882, John Riley was working his cattle when he was gored by his bull. He made it into the house, but he had a deep wound.

The Sedalia Bazoo – October 24, 1882
The Sedalia Bazoo – November 7, 1882

John didn’t recover. Two weeks later, at 8:30 on the morning of Tuesday, November 7, John Riley died. He was age 57.

He was buried November 8 in Calvary Cemetery in Sedalia, Lot 28, Block C, Grave 5.

Ann Riley died

Headstone – John and Ann Riley – Calvary Cemetery – Sedalia, Missouri

Ann Riley died in 1887, age 60. Sedalia didn’t keep death records during the 1880s, so we don’t have any death citation for Ann or John Riley.

Ann Riley was buried next to John in Calvary Cemetery, Lot 28, Block C, Grave 4.

Cut in Two by the Cruel Wheels

Another tragic accident. John Riley’s sister Margaret Hart was run over by a train. Margaret was age 60.

Margaret was buried next to John and Ann Riley in Calvary Cemetery, Lot 28, Block C, Grave 3.

The Sedalia Bazoo – October 21, 1890

There’s hope

This has been a difficult way to end our story of the Riley family in the 1880s. But hope springs eternal. The 1890s will dawn bright and beautiful.



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