Sarah (Martin) Brennan

Sarah Emma (Martin) Brennan (1848 - 1936)

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Sarah Emma Brennan formerly Martin aka Wheeler, Millhorn
Born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United Statesmap
Daughter of [father unknown] and [mother unknown]
[sibling(s) unknown]
Wife of — married (to ) [location unknown]
Wife of — married (to ) in Payne, Oklahomamap
Wife of — married (to ) in Cushing, Payne, Oklahomamap
Descendants descendants
Died in Cushing, Payne, Oklahoma, United Statesmap
Profile last modified | Created 29 Aug 2017
This page has been accessed 291 times.

Categories: Homesteaders Project | Cushing, Oklahoma | Family Brick Walls | New Zion Cemetery, Cushing, Oklahoma.

Sarah (Martin) Brennan was involved in the westward expansion of the USA.
Join: Homesteaders Project
Discuss: Homesteaders



Please see The Bewley-Wheeler Branch Story for an up close and personal story of the roots of the family. However please keep in mind it is a memoir and not fully accurate.

Please also see Space:Original_Wheeler_Homestead. This version I have found more accurate, except the date of Phillip requires to be amended as he died in March of 1892 not Sep of 1891.

What has come up in my research for her confirms the story of a true Pioneer Women.

Sarah was born in Philadelphia, she then married Phillip Wheeler and they had 8 children. In about 1890 they moved to Oklahoma, staked out a homestead and filed for it. Then they moved onto it in March and Phillip struck his foot with an Axe and died within a week from the injury. Henry David , her oldest, filed for a homestead on the land next to hers but he cancelled it and returned back to Kansas.

Sarah stayed there, living in a tent for the first year with her children. The family in response did not give up, they even donated an acre of land to build the Lone Oak School (Page in progress, have photos of what remains and more details to add).

In every way she displayed the heart and grit that comes so often to be romanticized about the Pioneer women, but few truly grasp the hardship they endured.

She later buried her 2nd husband (more of his life to be discovered still) and found love again and a quiet retirement in a beautiful home in Cushing(Photo's to come still). She, and the other women that endured similar stories, I am deeply humbled by who they were. But also it makes me understand where I get my strong belief that anything can be overcome.

I look forward to telling the rest of her story as time goes on, and finding her family.

Research Conflict

Sarah's parents remain unknown with the exception of other family trees[1] even though census records that seem to match the dates for Caroline Engle & Joshua Martin - they have her living at home with them in 1870 - which she had married and her eldest son had been born so we find that unlikely. I leave them here for now until I can prove concretely one way or the other that it is or is not correct simply so that if others see this they won't keep adding them on and me deleting them.

Early Life

What we do know is that Sarah Emma Martin was born the 29th of July 1846 in Philadelphia[2], Pennsylvania[3][4].

THere is a possibility her father was John Martin and mother Susanna

"Pennsylvania Births and Christenings, 1709-1950," database, FamilySearch ( : 11 February 2018), Sarah Ann Martin, 14 Oct 1848; Christening, citing HOLY TRINITY LUTHERAN CHURCH,YORK SPRINGS,ADAMS,PENNSYLVANIA; FHL microfilm 974.842 Y1 K2H.

Name Sarah Ann Martin Gender Female Event Type Christening Event Date 14 Oct 1848 Event Place HOLY TRINITY LUTHERAN CHURCH,YORK SPRINGS,ADAMS,PENNSYLVANIA Birth Date 09 May 1848 Father's Name John Martin Mother's Name Susanna

Family Life

Sarah's married her first husband, Phillip Dodridge Wheeler in June of 1863 and together they had 8 children that have been documented to date.

Henry is listed as being born in 1864 in Holton, Jackson, Kansas, so we must assume they were living there at that time.

She would later marry John Millhorn[6] on the 3rd of July 1894, likely related to her son in law William Millhorn.

Her last husband would be Patrick Brennan, they would marry on the 12th of Jan 1905 in Cushing, Payne, Oklahoma[7].

Through the years

In 1865 they were in Jackson, Kansas[8] and in the home where PD Wheeler 26, Sarah 17, Henry 10 months old.

In 1880[9] They were living in Franklin, Jackson, Kansas.

In 1900, as the children grew we find her in the 1900 census [10] making her home in Pawnee, Lincoln, Oklahoma with her daughters Dorsa and Etta, and sons Eugene and Lester. We see her with a last name of Millburn, but he is not residing in the home at that time. so one must assume that he either died soon after the marriage took place, or for some reason a divorce was sought.

We also find that her daughter Dorsa there - listed as having 2 children and having been married is left blank for herself and Sarah.

in 1910, Sarah lists herself as a farmer, having 7 children and all 7 lived - however we do see 8.

The 1910 census, listing her as home #146 confirms her birth place as Pennyslvania, as well as both her moth and father hailed from Pennsylvania. Unfortunately though she was unable to write - she could read and speak english, but the unable to write it.

She owned the farm free and clear and the farm schedule was #133.

The 2 closest homes before her in the census the time where the Schancks and McLaurys

In 1910 she was residing in Indian, Payne, Oklahoma, USA [11] with Patrick

In 1920 she was residing in Cushing Ward 4, Payne, Oklahoma[12] with Patrick

In 1930 she was residing in Cushing, Payne, Okalhoma [13] with Patrick


Sarah Passed away March 9th 1936[14] and she would be buried in the New Zion Cemetery in Cushing, Payne Oklahoma on March the 11th, 1936[4].

Here Obituary would read[2]

Mrs. Brennan Dies At Home in City

Pioneer Resident, Mrs. Sarah E. Brennan, Homesteaded near Cushing.

Mrs Sarah E. Brennan, age 89 years, 7 months and 10 days, died at her home, 303 East Oak, Monday night about 10 o'clock. She is a pioneer resident of this city.

Funeral Services will be conducted Wednesday afternoon. 2:30 o'clock at the chapel of the H.A. Davis funeral home. The Rev. Clyde Sherman, pastor of the First Christian church, of which Mrs. Brennan was a member, will conduct the service. Burial will be made in the New Zion cemetery beside the grave of her daughter, who died a year ago yesterday.

Mrs. Brennan was born in Philadelphia, PA., July 29, 1846. She and her daughter, Mrs. Mary Millhorn have made their home together. Mrs. Brennan was ill for the past five months and bedfast three weeks.

She came to Cushing from Kansas in 1889 during the opening and homesteaded 4 miles south and 1 mile west of Cushing, where the Lone Oak school is now located.

Surviving relatives are two daughters, Mrs. Mary Millhorn and Mrs. Ward Shirley of Cushing and three sons, Bert and E.E. (Gene) Wheeler of Cushing and Henry Wheeler of Cherryvale, Kansas and 12 grandchildren, one of whom is Harold E. Wheeler of this city.


Copies of her Homestead application can be seen here[6]: Sarah's Homestead Application

The family had moved to Oklahoma in search of land

ON August 18, 1900 She would certify under final certificate #4247 and applicaiton #8520 that she Sarah E. Millhorn formerly Srah E Wheeler widow of Phillip D Wheeler had made paymetn in full for NE 1/2 of Section 29, in Tonwship No 17 N of Range No 5 East of the Indian Meridian in Oklahoma containing 160 acres.

John A Campbell was called as Witness for Sarah, he was 39 years old and lived in Cushing. He confirmed that she had moved onto the land in march of 1892 and at that time she was a widow by that time. But he had hauled lumber and broke soil before he died. She had remarried to John Millhorn but by this time he had passed away as well.

She had worked 50 or 60 acres of the land for 9 seasons and had build a frame house 14 x 24 feet with a porch, a box stable that was 12x24 feet with crib addition. 2 Wells, an orchard of 200 fruit trees, 50 to 60 acres broke, all under post and wire fence with a value of $1,000.

Francis Bonebrake would also be a witness, and his name can be seen associated in the stories written in the Cushing area about the family and the Lone Oak School. He reconfirmed that she had moved onto the land in March of 1892, he described the land improvements the same with a small value difference and claimed it was worth $800.

Sarah then described her own version in a similar way and that she first occupied it in March of 1892, but had a house build by the fall/

She confirmed that she was a native born american, which rules out an overseas birth, however we have documents signed by Phillip reading first Sep 1 1891, then crossed out to be Oct 1, 1891. In the next page we have a confirmed death date for Phillip reading the 12th day of March 1892. She then confirmed she married John Millhorn on the 3rd of July 1894

On August 18, 1900 an application would be made at the Land office in Guthrie for Section 29, Township 17, Range 5 E to be approved, and it would be approved on the Feb 6, 1901 and patented on April 22nd, 1901.


  1. Ancestry family trees seen
  2. 2.0 2.1 Payne County Obituary
  3. 1910 census
  4. 4.0 4.1 Record of Funeral from Davis Funeral Home in Cushing Oklahoma
  5. Death Certificate of son Henry David Wheeler
  6. 6.0 6.1 Sara's homestead application papers
  7. Payne County, Oklahoma Marriages 1893-1907
  8. Kansas State Historical Society; Topeka, Kansas; 1865 Kansas Territory Census; Roll: ks1865_4; Line: 2
  9. Year: 1880; Census Place: Franklin, Jackson, Kansas; Roll: 383; Family History Film: 1254383; Page: 121A; Enumeration District: 108; Image: 0245
  10. Year: 1900; Census Place: Pawnee, Lincoln, Oklahoma; Roll: 1339; Page: 8A; Enumeration District: 0127; FHL microfilm: 1241339
  11. 1910 cenus
  12. Year: 1920; Census Place: Cushing Ward 4, Payne, Oklahoma; Roll: T625_1482; Page: 16A; Enumeration District: 199
  13. Year: 1930; Census Place: Cushing, Payne, Oklahoma; Roll: 1925; Page: 4A; Enumeration District: 0010; FHL microfilm: 2341659
  14. Find A Grave: Memorial #45485109

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DNA Connections
It may be possible to confirm family relationships with Sarah by comparing test results with other carriers of her mitochondrial DNA. However, there are no known mtDNA test-takers in her direct maternal line. It is likely that these autosomal DNA test-takers will share DNA with Sarah:

Have you taken a DNA test for genealogy? If so, login to add it. If not, see our friends at Ancestry DNA.

Images: 4
Phillip Wheeler Image 1
Phillip Wheeler Image 1

Phillip Wheeler Image 4
Phillip Wheeler Image 4

Sarah Brennan Image 3
Sarah Brennan Image 3

Home of Patrick Brennan and Sarah Emma Martin in 1918
Home of Patrick Brennan and Sarah Emma Martin in 1918


Sarah is 11 degrees from Walter Morrison, 28 degrees from Alison Wilkins and 19 degrees from Victoria of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland on our single family tree. Login to find your connection.

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