NIDEVER, John Marion II

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NIDEVER, John Marion II (1837-1912) was the son of Mary “Polly” King Vernon Nidever (1808-1871) and John Marion Nidever (1797-1873), older brother of otter hunter George Nidever (1802-1883). John Marion Nidever II accidentally shot himself when he was 76, and is buried in Carpinteria cemetery. John Marion II married Martha Jane Callis (1849-1930) in 1862 when he was 24 and she was barely 13, and they had fourteen children:

  • 1. Ethel Jane “Janie” Nidever (1863-1868)
  • 2. James Lewis Nidever (1864-1971) = Rilla Jorden Cauch
  • 3. George Frank Nidever (1865-1947) = Frances Mary Medberry
  • 4. Martha “Ella” Nidever (1867-1913) = Johnson Stewart
  • 5. Belle Nidever Nidever (1868-1868)[Carpinteria Cemetery]
  • 6. Lucy D. Nidever (1870-1917)[Carpinteria Cemetery] = James M. Lewis
  • 7. John Henry Nidever (1871-1955)[Carpinteria Cemetery]
  • 8. Robert “Robbie” W. Nidever (1873-1884)
  • 9. David Thomas Nidever (1874-1951) = Ida “Ruth” Kezer
  • 10. Jacob Daniel Nidever (1876-1934)[Carpinteria Cemetery] = Pearl M. Hawkins
  • 11. Delia Augusta Nidever (1880-1962)[Carpinteria Cemetery] = Glen Harrison Hickey (1883-1972) [Carpinteria Cemetery]
1. Thelma Isabel Hickey (1904-1920) = [1924] Raymond Whitney Harthorn (1900-1961)
1. Thelma Alene Harthorn = [#1 Thomas Todd / #2 David J.Pinette]
2. Glen Marvin Harthorn (1928-1999)
2. Alma Martha Hickey (1907-1978) [Carpinteria Cemetery] = Rumaldo Charles Abbott (1898-1979)
3. Margaret Lois Hickey (1909-1958) [Carpinteria Cemetery] = Omar Lynn Rains (1910-1992)
1. Alan Rains
  • 12. Vernon Marion Nidever (1885-1971)[Carpinteria Cemetery] = [1910] Evalina “Eva” Johnson
  • 13. Ruth Idella Nidever (1888-1932)[Carpinteria Cemetery] = Harry Clifford Fryman
  • 14. Grace N. Nidever (1889-1969)[Carpinteria Cemetery] = Mark Lang



In the News~

July 23, 1909 [J. M. Nidever to A. J. Caire, Santa Cruz Island Company]: “Dear Sir, My self and a party would like very much to go to Santa Cruz Island on a camping trip next month, if you will kindly give us a permit to do so. And oblige J. M. Nidever, Carpinteria, Cal.”


'August 10, 1909 [J. M. Nidever to A. J. Caire, Santa Cruz Island Company]: “Dear Sir, We wrote to you some time ago asking for permission to go to Santa Cruz Island, and you wanted the names of the party. There will be myself and wife, three sons, three daughters, two son-in-laws, Mr. J. Stewart and Mark Lang. Also Mr. W. Froom. We would like for you to answer right away as we would like to go about the 16th or 17th if you will grant us permission. We want to camp at Willows camp on the south side of the island


July 16, 1912 [LAT]: “Carpinteria. Jacob [John Marion] Nidever shot and instantly killed himself at his residence here on Sunday morning. He was preparing for a camping trip and was taking his forty-four Smith & Wesson revolver from the house to the porch, where he said he was going to clean it. The discharge of the gun brought members of the family, but Nidever was dead before he could be reached. The bullet entered two inches above the right eye. Coroner Ruiz of Santa Barbara was called. He summoned a jury, which brought in a verdict that the deceased came to his death from the accidental discharge of the gun. Mr. Nidever was 76 years of age and had lived in this vicinity for sixty-one years. He was one of the earlier American settlers of the valley. When a boy, he crossed the plains from Arkansas.”


July 19, 1912 [paper]: “John M. Nidever shot himself early on Sunday morning last at his home at Serena. His death was instant. From all that could be learned of the circumstances the shooting was entirely accidental. It seems that Mr. Nidever was getting ready to leave for a camping trip. He started to go out the door and seems to have somehow fallen and discharged the gun. The bullet entered his head about two inches above the right eye. No one saw him at the moment of the accident. Coroner Ruiz was notified and came down at once… Mr. Nidever was 76 years of age. He was born in Arkansas from which state he came to this county when he was fifteen years of age, locating near Santa Barbara. For two generations he has been identified with the interests of the Carpinteria valley. In December 1868 he helped organize the Methodist church here and was one of the charter members. Later he became dissatisfied with the moderate zeal of the church in general and joined a Holiness band. His ranch at Serena was one of the good places in the valley and he has lived there for years in great contentment. Mr. Nidever was a man of firm conviction and great strength of character. And he lived without reproach in the community, honored and respected by all.


[DATE and paper?]: “For 61 years John M. Nidever was a resident of Santa Barbara county. This term of years covers a good part of the life of the nation and almost the entire period of American settlement in California. It was only three years previous to his arrival that gold was discovered and the days of the forty-niner began to be. Just previous to this time the old missions of California passed forever from the control of the church to that of the state and the days of the heroic sacrifice of the Mission fathers were ended. Shortly after he came the Civil War was fought. The great state of California has been created since that time. While Mr. Nidever was struggling to subdue the Serena ranch and make it profitable, the great railway builders were fighting with the Sierras and building the transcontinental line, which united the west and the east. Since then Los Angeles has grown to be a great city and southern California has been transformed from a desert to a garden spot. The Carpinteria valley has been changed from a live oak forest to a second Eden.