Museum the New Llano Colony

Mary (Roberts Blacksher Halahan) Roe

Birth: Born around 1893 in Tennessee.  

Family Information: Daughter of Alice Aiton.

Sister of Violet (Dix) Parsons.

Mother of Joe Blacksher.

Aunt of Jimmy (Dix) Manuel.

Sometime prior to 1930 she married Ben Roe.

She was step-mother of Robert, Warren, Walter, Frances and Lucille Roe.  


Pre-Colony History: In 1900 she was living with her parents and several siblings in Port Arthur, Texas.

Her first husband was Joseph Blacksher, with whom she had two sons, the youngest lived with her in the colony. When she arrived in the colony, however, she was known as Mrs. Mary Halahan, though there was never any report of a "Mr." Halahan being with her and I've not found any information about him from other sources, so probably they weren't married for long.  

Home in Colony: In March 1929 the Brattland family moved into the little house where Violet Dix had been living and Violet and her sister (and presumably their children) went together into the Rogers house. Later that year Mary and her mother, Alice Aiton, made much needed repairs to her home since the colony carpenters were always too busy.

In 1930 she was living in the colony with her new husband, Ben Roe, and her son Joe Blacksher.  

Job in Colony: In 1928 Mary, along with her mother, sister and Mrs. Shoemaker was working at Cravens where colonists were salvaging materials from the old sawmill town.

Later that year she, a graduate nurse from New York State, was put in charge of the hospital, which had four permanent beds and a fifth that could be put up in case of emergency.

She stayed busy as it was also reported frequently that she was helping out in the gardens -- harvesting peanuts and pulling sweet potato vines for silage. Another day she was spotted standing up on a load of wood drawn by a pair of mules which she was delivering to some one in need of a good fire.

In 1929 she had a new job -- Dad Gardner was teaching her how to set file and hammer and shape saws. The following week he boasted about how quickly she was learning. She reportedly "was ambitious for the day when her health and strength would permit her to tackle a regular man's job." She continued to help out with the gardening - in July she and two boys hoed an acre of okra. 

Other Info: In 1933 she was part of the mixed quartet, the Llano Four, composed of Dr. Williams on the upper end; Anita Brannon and Mary; and Comrade Gaylord on the lower end.

In 1934 she and Mrs. Archer led a music-hall skit during a theater performance.  

Post-Colony History: In 1940 Mary was listed as widowed and living in Texas where she was working as a live-in nurse in a private home.  

Death: She died in November 1974 in Tennessee.  

Sources: US Census: 1900, 1930, 1940; "Llano Colonist": October 29, 1927, November 10, 1928, December 8, 1928, December 15, 1928, March 2, 1929, May 18, 1929, May 25, 1929, July 13, 1929, July 27, 1929, August 3, 1929, August 10, 1929, August 17, 1929, August 24, 1929, November 2, 1929, November 23, 1929, February 25, 1933, June 3, 1933, November 25, 1933, June 30, 1934; US SSDI  


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