Helen Viola Jackson, America’s last known Civil War widow, dead at 101

Helen Viola Jackson, America’s last known Civil War widow, dead at 101


America’s last known Civil War widow has died at age 101.

Helen Viola Jackson, who had been living in Webco Manor Nursing Home in Marshfield, Missouri, died on Dec. 16, the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War said in a statement on Saturday.

She married Private James Bolin — who fought with the 14th Missouri Cavalry and F Company — when she was 17 and he was 93 in September 1936.

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Their relationship began when Jackson’s father volunteered her to help Bolin with his chores on her way to school.

Bolin didn’t want to accept charity so he decided to ask Jackson to marry him in order to provide for her future and for her to collect his Union pension, according to the organization.

Bolin died in June 1939. Jackson never remarried, didn’t have any children, and also never collected her husband’s pension.

Jackson didn’t publicly share she was married to a Civil War veteran until 2017.

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