Monday, August 29, 2011

The Joslin Family South Dakota Reunion

Aug. 19, 20, 21 - Friday evening, we met up with the group at the Best Western in Murdo, South Dakota. We were gathering, with the small group of Joslins (my mother’s family) that could get together to visit the old ‘homestead’ . The timing (and our activities) centered around the Mellette County 100th anniversary. For those who do not know, my mother, Ruth, and her brothers were born on a homestead in Mellette County, SD, just outside of the little town of Cedar Butte.

From left – front row – siblings: George Joslin,Springfield, MO; Ruth Joslin Liuzza, Monroe, LA; Jim Joslin, Springfield, MO– back row – Richard Kutz, Ft. Collins, Colorado; Becky Wiseman, Indiana and ‘on the road’; Tim Joslin, Richmond, Virginia; Babs Joslin Christy, Huntsville, Alabama; Joann Liuzza Perrer, Monroe LA; Fred Elliott & Susan Liuzza Elliott, Farmerville, LA


All the ‘festivities’ were being held in White River, a small town of about 500 people, located just about 30 minutes south of Murdo, where we were staying.


Saturday morning, after a delicious pancake breakfast hosted by the White River volunteer fire dept., we hung out at the Mellette County Museum.

In pics- Sue – then, Ruth, George, Jim


Becky, Joann, Tim


My Grandfather, Virgil Joslin, took out a homestead in 1916…..He married Mary Hutchinson and they worked the homestead until drought and the ‘dust bowl’ drove them out in 1934.


We pinpointed on the map, the section that the homestead was located.


My mother always tells the story of how she and her brothers were born in White River  at a ;laying in’ house, assisted by a midwife named Mary Eaton. We found a reference to Ms. Eaton and her family in a book at the museum.




And, in White River, after a bit of looking around, we found the house. (note- it is at the corner of 2nd and Broad) It looks quite a bit worse for the wear, since we last saw it in 1996, when it had a new coat of paint.


Mellette County, and the Rosebud Reservation, has a proud Native American heritage. They celebrated the contribution of a number of Native American homesteaders and neighbors.




A rich, proud heritage of self-determination, co-operation, hard work, family, and community,  ……..


  1. Sue I love the Homestead story! And the pictures are great! that was a fun reunion! Mom

  2. What fun - you and Becky posted SD stories on the same day. I'm reliving the trip :). Babs

    1. Is your family related to the Al Joslin famly?