Warrenville Women’s History Wednesday: Louisa Goddard Warren Bird Warren

The Historical Society began 2016 telling the story of Colonel Warren’s seven sisters. Julius Warren, our town’s founder, was the only son in his family and had the important job of helping his parents, Nancy and Daniel Warren, find seven suitable husbands for his seven sisters. The Warren sisters were successfully married to seven well-established men who helped to shape northern Illinois. Please enjoy reading a little bit about one of the seven sisters featured in our January program The Seven Sisters of Colonel Warren. You can also learn more about the sisters in our museum exhibit that will be on display at the Historical Museum & Art Gallery through 2016.

The first Warren sister marriage took place while the family was still living out east, when Louisa Goddard Warren, the second Warren daughter, found a suitable partner in Frederick Bird. Frederick was the son of Captain and Reverend Nathaniel Bird, who was one of Chautauqua County, New York’s most enterprising early settlers. Captain Bird had fought in the Revolutionary War when he was only 16. Frederick’s oldest brother, Captain Amos Bird, served in the War of 1812. The family held important portions of land in Chautauqua County and controlled toll bridges that were important to postal service.

Louisa Warren

Louisa Warren Bird

Louisa and Frederick were wed on December 8, 1824, in Westfield, New York. Louisa was eighteen years old. Within seven years, the couple had welcomed their first three children, Byron, Edwin, and Ellen. When the family headed west to DuPage County in 1833, Frederick traveled with Warren father Daniel as the first family members to arrive in the area and began to build the family’s first home in what is now McDowell Grove.

In 1835, the Bird family relocated from the original Warren land claim to just north of Geneva and started a small family farm. Westward movement however was still in their blood and the family moved again, this time to the edge of the Rock River. The family would eventually have seven children. Sadly, Frederick died on a return visit to New York in 1842. Louisa was left a widow at the age of 36.

3S457 Jackson

3S457 Jackson Street

Louisa returned to Warrenville following Frederick’s death and built a home on a large estate at Fourth and Jackson Streets. After living as a widower for 18 years, Louisa remarried a cousin, Silas Warren, and moved back to her native New York. A portion of the land she left was sold to the Warrenville Baptists who built a parsonage there in 1877 at 3S457 Jackson.

In less than 18 years of living with her husband, Silas, in New York, she was once again widowed and returned to Illinois where she lived with her daughter, Mrs. Julia Talbot, in Chicago until her death on May 10, 1883. Louisa was laid to rest at the Warrenville Cemetery. She was remembered as the great pioneer of all the family.

Published in: on March 23, 2016 at 2:43 pm  Leave a Comment  

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