Photo Details

I believe this is a photo of Robert Russell Greene, judging from the hairstyle, taken in the 1890's in Salem MO. He was a jewelry store owner and his store is on the historic building tour in Salem. He was the brother of my great-grandfather. I would love to hear from any people related to Robert.
in Salem, Missouri United States of America


Melinda Blackman Robert Russell Greene was my paternal great grandfather. His daughter Maggie Hildred married Ross Belew and their son Leland Belew was my father. My sister and I have had a great interest in the Greene family and were delighted to find your pictures and posts. We share a relationship with Wylie Bridges Greene, who was a most interesting character and also what some would term a "rascal" and others would perhaps use stronger language. It is our understanding that he had several families around the states and that our family tree is much broader than formal history might dictate. Maggie Virginia Curren Greene, his wife, was long suffering as was Temperance Laura. We have come to understand that it was not that unusual for men to have more than one family in what was considered at that time as the edge of the territories. Wylie came from a family that was quite well off. The Green's from the Revolutionary war were rewarded with around 46,000 acres of land in the territories in the southern portion of the United States. When Wylie inherited his portion, he made a series of poor investments that lost most of his money. Maggie was a good business woman and was instrumental in the opening of the jewelry store in Salem run by Robert. She also invested in properties in the area. During the civil war, Wylie smuggled quinine into the country and we think he distributed it to both sides. There was a family apothecary in Nashville, Tennessee where they resided and it was the only pharmacy to consistently have quinine during the war. Quinine was the wonder drug of the age. Maggie developed malaria one summer when they did not retreat to the mountains. Wylie's father owned homes in several locations in the south. He was a doctor as well and had inherited money from the family. Wylie was considered a good doctor and was well liked and respected for that part of his life. It was no secret to the citizens of Salem about his philandering ways. He would be gone for long periods of time and in Maggie's diary she would always note when Doctor Greene arrived for a visit and left. It was thought that he doted on his daughter Ruby and that she had a reputation for being mean. When Wylie was practicing on the Indian reservation in Oklahome, he brought grown daughter Ruby there with him. She met a man also working there and they were married. She had to have known of her father's indiscretions as he had an Indian "wife" there. The Greene family left Kentucky after Maggie could no longer take his reputation and women started calling at their home asking for him. They moved to Indiana after that. Maggie made a visit to one paramour during that stay.
Feb 01 · Reply
Mary Vail I'm very excited to hear from you. It has been frustrating trying to find info on this branch of the family. My understanding is that during and after the Civil War, many records were destroyed or lost to posterity. A little of the history as I know it: My grandmother was Lyndall Ellis (Greene) Maddux. She was born to Dr. Frank Ellis and Laura Dickson Ellis in 1900 in the Oklahoma Territory. She married Vincent Maddux in 1923.
Feb 02 · Reply
Mary Vail Somehow, this sent the message before I was done. To continue, Lyndall's father was Dr. Frank Ellis. He changed his name from Frank Greene in early 1890. His father was Wylie Bridges Greene and his mother was Maggie Greene. Therefore, his brother was Robert Greene. I have copies of parts of Maggie's diary which are so interesting to read...from the time she first became acquainted with Wiley til they married, had children, wandered all over the country, chasing rainbows, to the difficult life she had with no money except the stipend given her by her sons. One excerpt mentions a visit from Frank Ellis and his new wife, Laura. According to my Grandmother's stories, her father was involved in a duel in Kentucky, shot a man and was whisked off to the port of New Orleans by his father who sent him on a sailing ship to South Africa. I also have his ticket for the passage. During the years he was gone, he changed his name and finally came back to the states as Frank Ellis. He went to medical school and became a doctor. He was hired by the Department of Indian Affairs to attend to the needs of the Indians on various reservations throughout the Midwest and West. His last assignment was in Arizona. My Grandmother remembers the trip down the Colorado River on a raft or canoe when they moved there. She was six years old at the time, 1906. My Mother was his first grandchild and she loved him beyond all else. They all lived together in Kansas City MO where my mother and her brother were born. Unfortunately, in the early 1930's, Frank died from a heart attack one night. Equally unfortunate, my grandfather, Vincent Maddux, was shot in the head by a robber at the bus terminal where he worked. While he didn't die from his injuries, he was disabled thereafter. The Old Soldier's Home in Kansas City had to ask they to vacate the doctor's residence after Frank died. So, the family lost both bread winners and their home. With the small amount of money they had between them, Laura, Lyndall, Vince and the two kids moved here to California. They purchased a lovely old Craftsman house in Monterey Park in 1936. They lived there until the late 1960's when they sold it to move into a smaller house in the same city. Grandpa Vince died in 1973 and Lyndall in 1989. My mother, Betty, died in 2011 and her brother, Bill, in 2012. If you are interested in any of the pictures of the family, including Maggie, Frank, Laura, etc. and pictures of the Greene Jewelry store from, what appears to be, around 1910, I'll be very happy to share what I have with you. These may all be things you already have, but you might want to check them out. Some of the pictures I have made an educated guess at who they are based on what I know, uniforms and clothing. I'm fairly confident it is largely correct but would love to have other eyes looking at the stuff. I have a considerable number of letters between Frank and his children as well as a controversy he and the other doctors working for Indian Affairs had with the government. Also, there is a museum in Arizona who has the contract signed by Frank for his service in Arizona along with some pictures of him and his family on the desolate reservation.
Feb 02 · Reply
Mary Vail My email address is [contact link]. Will be happy to hear from you
Feb 02 · Reply
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