The Civil War was a month old when Helen was born on the second of September 1861 to Charles S Beattys and Georgiana Howes in the town of Southeast in Putnam County, New York. She was about a year old when her dad went off to join the union army. A baby brother Daniel soon joined their family. Home life is not easy as her father is injured in the war, and returns just before her three year old brother dies. Just 9 months later, in 1866, Charles dies in a work related accident. Her mother Georgiana remarries in 1871 to Oliver Gay, but Helen remains the only child in the home.
Just shy of her 16th birthday, Helen (called Nellie) marries Junia Dykeman on Jul 2 1877. They reside in in Southeast, Putnam County, NY where Junia's family had been settled for many years. A small article was published in the Brewster Standard: announced “marriage of Junia W Dykeman and Nellie Bettis was very quietly celebrated on Sunday, July 1 1877 at the brides mother’s residence. The reception was held on evening following.” They have Junia Jr about a year later, when Helen is almost 17 and Junia Sr is 22, giving a start to what will become a large family.
In the 1880 Census we find the family living in Southeast, Putnam County NY. Junia is 24, born in NY and a farmer. Helen is listed as Nellie H, 19, Born in NY and Keeping House. Also listed is Junia Jr, 2 years old born in NY and the newest member of the house, baby Emma, at 11 months. Junia's mother Emma had died a few months before baby Emma's birth, which may be where the name comes from.
Four boys are born to the family by 1890; Charles R in 1881, Lewis H in 1885, William G in 1887, and Frederick S in 1890. There is no 1890 census, but all data points to Helen and Junia Sr still living in the family homestead in the town of Southeast, Putnam County NY. No 1892 state census has been found yet for this community. The railroad is established shortly after, going closely by the Homestead. The railroad stop there leads to the establishment of the hamlet of Dykeman's Station and in 1894 Dykemans gets a post office, putting it on the map.
Two more children are born, Arlene B in 1892, and Helen L in 1994. Helen's daughter Emma B Dykeman marries a cousin, Henry J Dykeman in April of 1897, moving out of the house. Helen and Junia have a son, Elbert Leslie Dykeman, born in late 1897 bringing their family to 9 children. In January of 1898, Helen's first grandchild is born, a daughter, Florence, to Emma and her husband Henry. In February of 1899, Helen's son Elbert dies. He is the only child they have that dies young, which is unusual for the times.
In the 1900 Census We find the family living in Dykemans Station, town of South east, Putnam County NY. Junia Sr is not listed.
Junia, Head, b July 1878 a Farmer, B NY listed as single (this is Junia Jr)
Helen A, Mother,B Sept 1861, Married, 8 of 9 children living, B NY. Father born in CT.
Lewis H, Brother, B Dec 1885, 14, Single B NY
William G, Brother, B Oct 1881 12, Single, B NY
Frederick S, Brother, B April 1890, 10, Single, B NY
Bessie A, Sister, B May 1892, 8, Single, B NY (Arlene Bessie)
Helen L, Sister, B Sept 1894, 5, Single, B NY
Georgiana A Gay, Grandmother (Helen's Mother) B Sept 1837, 62, Widowed, 1 of two children still living, B NY
also some servants and boarders are listed.
In August of 1900, Harold Horton Dykeman, my ancestor, is born to Helen and Junia. In October, their son Junia marries and in 1902 has a daughter, Ruth. At some point after Harold is born Helen and Junia move to Manhattan. This was before their son Ralph is born in March of 1903, There are records that Junia's father Daniel had lived part time in Manhattan, so they may have moved to a Family owned apartment, or they could have found a new location of their own. Between 1900 and 1910, Helen sees her sons Charles, and Lewis marry. They each have a daughter shortly thereafter, Doris and Alice, Her mother Georgiana Howes Beatty Gay dies in 1909 in Schenectady.
In the 1910 Census, the family is living on West 96th street in Manhattan.
Junia is 53, B in NY, on his first marriage of 31 years, Manager of a Milk Dairy.
Wife Helen is 48, B in NY, a housekeeper, married for 31 years.
William, Son, is 22 and single, B in NY, working as a bookkeeper in a Milk Dairy.
Daughter Arlene B is 17, B in NY, single and working as a bookkeeper in a Milk Dairy.
Daughter Helen L is 14, B in NY, single, no occupation.
Son Harold H. is 9, B in NY, Single, no occupation.
Son Ralph I is 7, Single,B in NY, no occupation.
Between 1910 and 1920, Frederick and William both get married. The grandchildren list grow to include Daniel, Helen, Frederick, Robert, Thelma, Kendall, Una, and Robert. World War one expands to include America, the Spanish Flu happens, and women in American gain the right to vote. Helen's son Charles, a state trooper, dies of Pleurisy in the beginning of 1920.
In the 1920 Census, we find the family still living on West 96th street in Manhattan, all born in USA with parents born in USA.
Junia (listed as Junius) Head of household, 63, Married, renting his home, a Manager in a Milk Company.
Helen (listed as Ellen) Wife, Married, 56, at home.
Son Harold,19 and Single, not working.
Son Ralph, 17 and Single, not working.
Son-in-law Charles Jagemann, 27 and Married, a Traffic Manager.
Daughter Helen Jagemann, 25 and Married, not working.
Kendon Jagemann (listed as Kenton), 3 months old.
Helen and Junia are living at 166 West 96 Street in New York city when Helen goes to have an operation for a intestinal blockage. Unfortunately at the age of 59, in May of 1920, Helen Passes away from complications. In the Brewster Standard June 4, 1920 her obituary is published: Sunday Morning 11 o’clock at St. Vincents Hospital, Helen Bettis, Wife of JW Dykeman died in her 59th year of age. Her death followed an operation for relief of strangulated Hernia. Helen was born in South East Center Father Charles H Bettis Mother Georgianna Howes, Daughter of late JO Howes.
Helen is buried in the Milltown Cemetery in Putnam county NY. Her husband Junia passes away in 1934. She is surrounded by the graves of many of her children and grandchildren.