Emeline Ann Nettleton, 96,
of Nampa, passed away Friday, May 5, 1995, at a Nampa
hospital after a full and humble life. Vigil services
will be held at 7:30 p.m. Monday, May 8, at Persons-Flahiff
Funeral Chapel, Nampa. A Funeral Mass will be
conducted at 11 a.m. Tuesday, May 9, St. Paul's Catholic
Church, Nampa, with the Rev. Father Paul Mathews, S. M.,
presid-ing. Burial will follow in Mount Calvary
Emeline was born on
Sept. 16, 1898, to Villo and Margaret Joyce Nettleton in the
small mining community of Black Jack, near Silver City.
Enneline began her schooling in Boise, but also attended
school at Dewey and Murphy. Miss Nettleton was
graduated from St. Teresa's in Boise in 1915.
After graduation, she returned to the homestead on Sinker
Creek where she helped with the family ranching operation.
At that time there were over 1,200 head of cattle on the
ranch, as well as numerous horses, pigs, chickens, turkeys
and ducks. Hospitality reigned supreme at the ranch
and no stranger was ever turned away from a hot meal or a
dry bed. As well as cooking for the ranch crew,
Emeline tended a huge garden to supply the ranch with fresh
At the age of 21, Emeline
became politically active and ran for the office of Owyhee
County Treasurer. It was the first election in Idaho
where women were allowed to vote, and it is unknown how much
that affected the outcome of the election, but Erneline won
and moved to Silver City, which was the county seat at that
Miss Nettleton successfully
completed her two-year term, but did not seek re-election.
Instead, she decided to take up a 640 acre enlarged
homestead on Josephine and Rimrock Creeks. Along with
this, she purchased an isolated tract, bringing her holdings
to 800 acres. During the time she was proving up on
her homestead, it was not uncommon to go months without
seeing another woman, as it was a two-day trip from the
Sinker Creek ranch to her homestead. Her log cabin
still stands and is still known as "Emeline's cabin" by the
neighbors on the mountain.
Nettleton's homestead was eventually incorporated into the
Joyce Ranch where she continued to work with her brothers.
In June of 1943, word was received that the earthen dam
above the ranch was in peril of breaking, so Emeline and the
hired men moved valuables to the second floor of the Joyce
home (called the Quintana), took some blankets, food and a
strong box of papers and climbed the side of a hill near the
house to wait for the expected flood. None could have
imagined the magnitude of the flood to come. To her
horror, Emeline watched in the moonlight as the two story
home, the corrals and barns and all her worldly possessions
were swept away. To make matters worse, WWII was in
progress and many household items were almost impossible to
obtain. Neighbors rallied around and held a shower for
the Nettletons, and some of the most cherished gifts were
ration stamps for shoes, sewing needles and cooking pans.
In 1945, Emeline moved to Boise. She still maintained
close contact with the ranch by keeping the books for the
operation for many years. In 1948, Miss Nettleton
moved to Nampa and in 1958, purchased her home on 14th
Avenue South where she resided alone until she was 94 years
old. At that time, she was moved to the care of Bill
and Carolyn Mowatt in Nampa. At the time of her death,
she was living at Karcher Estates. Emeline never
forgot the hospitality she generously displayed on the ranch
and always had a hot meal and a place to light for weary
relatives and friend who were in town for business.
Her house that she owned with her childhood friend, Isabelle
Wees, in Silver City shared the same, kind reputation.
Emeline was very devoted to her family, and her nieces and
nephews and their families have always considered her to be
the matriarch of the Nettleton family.
Miss Nettleton was a devout Catholic; a member of Court
Glorieux C.D.A. of Boise; of St. Paul's and Oreana's Altar
Societies; a Charter Member of both the Owyhee County and
Idaho State Cowbelles; Owyhee County Cattlemen's Centennial
Queen in 1978; one of the first women to receive the
Honorary Lifetime Member award of the Owyhee County
Cattlemen's Assn.; past director of the Silver City
Taxpayers' Assn.; Owyhee County Historical Society and the
Murphy Community Club.
preceded in death by her parents, her four brothers,
Charlie, Hubert and his wife, Helen, Jim and Joe.
She is survived by two sisters-in-law, Edith Nettleton and
Maudie Nettleton; six nephews, Paul Nettleton, Matt
Nettleton, Tim Nettleton, Nick Nettleton, Steve Nettleton
Bob Nettleton; and two nieces, Mary O'Malley and Marilyn
Black and their families; numerous cousins and her brothers
and sisters in her precious Catholic faith.
Memorials may be given in Emeline's name to St. Paul's
Catholic Church in Nampa; to the Owyhee County Historical
Society in Murphy; to a favorite charity or flowers may be
Friends many call until 9 p.m.
today and from 9 to 10:30 a.m. on Tuesday at Persons-Flahiff
Funeral Chapel, Nampa.