Stewart McAninch in Nevada: Part I: Through the 1891 Marriage


Stewart McAninch lived and worked in the ‘wild west’ mining districts and towns in the high

desert country of central Nevada during the 1880’s and 1890’s. These towns, and other places

mentioned, can be easily found on the State of Nevada’s free downloadable ‘tourist map’ [Note 1].


The details of Stewart McAninch’s birth are not known at this time. It is my estimate that Stewart

was probably born between 1840 and 1860 [2]; his parents and birthplace are currently unknown.

Unfortunately, Stewart has not been found on any census records, and the other records in Nevada

(marriage record, land deeds, etc.) do not have any clues regarding his exact age or place of origin.


Stewart’s future wife, Victoria L. Tucker, was born circa 1865 in California [3] [8], daughter

of (unknown male) and Martha C Tucker. Martha C. (maiden name unknown) Tucker was born

circa 1847-1848, in Iowa. Martha probably married (unknown male) Tucker ca. 1862-1863; they

may have married in California, since her first four children were all born in California [3] [8].


In 1870, Martha Tucker, age 22, is a single mother with four children (Mary C., Victoria, Robert,

and daughter Martha), living in Venice Township, Visalia, Tulare County, in central California [3].


In the same year (1870), Martha’s future (second) husband, George Lewis, age 38, is a single male,

working as a teamster, enumerated in Pioche, the county seat of Lincoln County, Nevada [4] [5].

George Lewis was born circa 1832, in Virginia, and nothing more is known about his background.


In the early years of the 1870’s, Martha Tucker and her four children made their way from Visalia,

California, across the Sierra Nevada mountains, to the mining boom town of Belmont, Nevada [6].


Belmont, Nevada (elevation 8000 feet) boomed after a new silver strike in October 1865, and by

1867 the population reached 2,000, second only to that of Virginia City in the state. Belmont was

said to be a “handsomely laid out town” with a bank, a school, two churches, telegraph service,

post office, and “20 whiskey shops”. Between 1867 and 1905, Belmont was the county seat of

Nye County. The two-story brick Belmont Courthouse, completed in 1874, is still standing and is

slowly being restored (by Nevada State Parks). After about 20 years of life, Belmont slowly died.

In 1903 most of the remaining miners moved south to the new strike at Tonopah, and, in 1905, the

county seat moved there, too. Today, Belmont is a ghost town [6] [6.a] [6.b] [6.c] [6.d].


George Lewis (age 41-42), and Martha C. Tucker (age 26-27), were married on 17 November 1873,

in Belmont, Nye County, Nevada, by the minister (“Priest”) of the Protestant Episcopal Church [7].


George Lewis became step-father to Martha’s four children (Mary C. Tucker, Victoria L Tucker,

Robert Tucker, and daughter Martha Tucker). During the 1870’s, George and Martha had two more

children, a daughter, E. Lewis, born circa 1876, and a son, George Lewis, born circa 1877 [8].



McAninch Family History NL v.XVII n.1 / January 2009 / Copyright Frank McAninch / page 2009-02


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