This note, written by my great-grandmother, Elvirta Knutz Graves, explains the significance of these collars she had tucked away. The lace collar belonged to her mother, Nettie Lair Graves (1861 – 1935), and the fabric collar belong to Nettie’s grandmother, Margaret Coble Nickeson (ca 1803 – 1854).
Margaret Coble Nickeson, owner of the fabric collar, married her husband, Joseph Nickeson, in Franklin county, Ohio in 1819, and in the 1840s they relocated to Peoria county, Illinois with their children. She died in 1854 at the age of 56 in Princeville. Her daughter Margaret Nickeson married Lawson Lair in 1858. They spent the rest of their lives in Princeville, Margaret passing away in 1900 at the age of 59. Their second child was Nettie Lair, owner of the lace collar. Nettie married Tom Graves in 1883 in Princeville, and they remained in that area until 1906, when they moved to Esmond, South Dakota. Their daughter Elivrta married Will Knutz in 1910, in Huron, South Dakota. The collars were eventually given to Virta’s daughter Mabel, who passed away last year. I would like to thank my cousins for sending me these, and other, remarkable treasures that their mother had so carefully saved. I am truly blessed and honored to have them.