Nancy Jane Rector Medlin Obituary

Life Story of One of Barton County’s Pioneer Women

Nancy Jane Rector was born near Bowling Green, Kentucky, October 25, 1850. At Four years of age she settled on Round Prairie east of Milford. When the Civil War broken out her father joined the army and the family were left to pass thrue the hectic days of the Kansas Jayhawkers and Order No. 11.

During a raid on the former her home was burned along with dozens of other dwellings. The shattered remains of the pioneer settlement moved south into Arkansas where they remained until the war closed. Then part of them, among whom was the Rector family, returned to rebuild their broken homes. In 1869 she was married to T. G. Medlin, a young pioneer who had been living in Bates County, at the time of the issue of Order No. 11.

For more than half a century this worthy couple have traveled the pleasant road of happiness together, their home a Mecca for the neighbors and friends of the entire country side. Uncle Tom and Aunt Nancy, as they were affectionately called were loved and respected by all and their latch string always hung outside the door.

They were among the early pioneers who claimed a frontier for their posterity. During the period of complex social existence and greed for gain it was refreshing to stop at this home whose fine hospitality remained the same, (even after trim ill health had fastened itself on the wife and mother,) as it had been years ago when women were helpmates and men had hair on their chests. The entire life of this noble soul was spent in unselfish labor for others and she literally offered her life a living sacrifice on the altar of service and devotion to one’s duty. What a rebuke, more eloquent than words to that class of female parasites who squander their time sipping tea, playing bridge and smearing their slimy gossip?

Her life is best described by the last stanza of Bryant’s Thanatopsis and surely if Jehova be looking down on his people he will say to her, "Well done thou good and faithful servant, enter thou into the joy of the Lord.


Submitted by Phillip Rector on January 23, 2002.

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