Autobiography of Albert Nelson See (1840-1924)

Ted Smith #55

Albert Nelson See (1840-1924) is the 5th great-grandson of Simon Sackett ("the colonist") and 7th great-grandson of Thomas ("the elder") and Joane Sackett.
He was a circuit rider preacher for most of his life, covering the territory along the railroads in and west of Kansas. His autobiography, although sometimes rambling and straying from the topic, is an interesting read. He describes his call to the ministry, being tempted to earn riches in the oil industry, and his military service. During the Civil war, he twice enlisted in the Pennsylvania Volunteers. He recounts his illness, being temporarily assigned to duty in hospitals while he recovered, and his march and experience to, in, and following the Battle of Chancellorsville during his first enlistment.

During his second enlistment, he helped guard President Lincoln at the White House and at Lincoln's summer encampments. He describes that service, Lincoln's kindness toward the troops, and interactions with Tad and President Lincoln, and his acquaintance with Sgt. Boston Corbett, the man who killed John Wilkes Booth.

I have not yet finished reading the book but though I would pass the information on to the list so others could do so. The book can be downloaded either page by page or in its entirety from

Ted Smith #55

I have finished my review of Albert See's autobiography. In addition to what I noted in my previous post, he recounts his efforts to teach in the deep south and being run out by the Ku Klux Klan, his founding of Kansas Wesleyan University, and his ministry efforts.

His autobiography filled in some details about his marriages. His first wife, Cynthia Ann Northrop, was born 18 Nov 1840 in Rome Township, Crawford County, Pennsylvania. They married 18 Nov 1863 in Warren County, Pennsylvania. While he served his second enlistment in the Army, during which he was guarding President Lincoln and his family, Cynthia attended college and earned a teaching certificate. On 17 Jun 1872, they had a son, Joseph Northrop See, who later also became a minister. Cynthia died 16 July 1902 in Salina, Kansas.

Albert notes that after Cynthia's death he borrowed $800, gave some to his son to build a house, and used some to travel to San Francisco, Seattle, and Missoula, Montana where his adopted daughter (Estella) and her husband lived. On this trip, he says, he also visited his cousin, Mrs. Alice W. Carter, widow of T.P Carter, in Beulah, Colorado. Some years later, on 31 Mar 1913, he married Alice Carter in Beulah.

The mention that Alice was a cousin raised questions: Was she also a Sackett descendant, and what was her maiden name?

One of those questions was answered in Alice's obituary. Was born 25 Dec 1841 in Greencastle, Indiana as Alice O. Wilson. [She died 8 March 1921 in her stepson's home in Collyer Township, Trego County, Kansas.] The obituary also reported that her prior husband, T.P. Carter died 5 Jan 1902 and is buried in Beulah, Colorado. His Find A Grave Memorial (#35431159) gives his birth date as 17 Jan 1836 and indicates he was a Sergeant in Co. K, Illinois Infantry during the Civil War. That information led to his war record which revealed he was born in Trumbull County, Ohio.

Digging further, T.P. Carter married A.W. Allen on 2 Jul 1890 in Colorado Springs, Colorado. That led to discovery of the likely record of Alice's first marriage:

Illinois, U.S., County Marriage Records, 1800-1940 (
Name:     Alice W. Wilson
Gender:     Female
Age:     41
Birth Year:     abt 1843
Marriage Date:     1884
Marriage Place:     Coles, Illinois, USA
Father:     Samuel Wilson
Mother:     Alneida Sarchet
Spouse:     Francis W. Allen

While the Ancestry transcription does not precisely say "Sacket," as Alice's mother's surname, it is close enough to be a match. That raised a question as to which Sacket cousin of Albert See's she might be. The most likely seems to be Almira Sacket (1812-1895), daughter of Filer Sackett and Deborah Waterman. Per several records and Weygant, Almira married Pleasant S. Wilson, and it is possible that his middle initial may stand for Samuel or that his given name was forgotten over time.

The problem is tracing the family. At least one researcher notes that Almira was first married to Pleasant Wilson, had four children with him, and the Pleasant "moved on" to another wife in Texas. Of the four children that the researcher lists, none are named Alice per census records, but one "Martha" was born about 1843 in Illinois, not Indiana, married George Wingett and died in 1905 in Pueblo, Colorado . Furthermore, records suggest that Francis Allen married several times before and after he married Alice Wilson, suggesting that he and Alice divorced.

The records are spotty. So far none of See and Sackets involved appear to be listed in the 1860 census.