William Henry Roll

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They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old: Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn. At the going down of the sun and in the morning, We will remember them. --Laurence Binyon,"Ode of Remembrance"

I have gathered a posie of other men's flowers, and nothing but the string that binds them is mine own. --Michel Eyquem de Montaigne

Documenting your family history is a lifelong pursuit, a task of pleasure and research that is never completely finished.

Not to know one's ancestors, is to be a tree without roots, a stream without a source. --Kung-fut-se

The wind whispers through the trees, recalling words and dreams and memories of those who left us long ago. --Unknown

St. Basil of Caesarea, born about 330 A.D., said, "A tree is known by its fruit; a man by his deeds. A good deed is never lost; he who sows courtesy reaps friendship, and he who plants kindness gathers love."


This website was created the old-fashioned way; it has been hand coded.

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Orville B. Talley
Land Title Abstractor and Local Historian

Spouse(s): Helen Nellie E. Lighty
Family tree: Orville B. Talley 1860-1925

Orville B. Talley is listed by Richard Timbrook Wilson as a contributor to his book The Genealogy of the Roll Family, and his spouse Helen Lightly was a Daughter of the American Revolution.


Orville Bryan Talley, whose death, in 1925, was regarded as a distinct loss to his community, was a man of exalted purpose and useful life, whose record honored and dignified his city and county. By a straightforward and commendable course he had attained a respected and influential position in the business world, earning a reputation as an enterprising, progressive man of affairs and a broadminded, charitable and upright citizen, qualities which the public was not slow to recognize and appreciate.

Mr. Talley was born on a farm near Terre Haute, Indiana, on the 24th of September, 1860, and was a son of John W. and Amanda Jane (Kyle) Talley. His father was born in 1830 and died in 1895 in Paxton, Illinois, and his mother, who was born in Ohio in 1836, died in Sioux City, Iowa, in 1917, He was the scion of old American lineage, the progenitor of the family in this country having settled near Chester, Pennsylvania, in 1675.

Orville B. Talley received his educational training in the public and high schools of Paxton, Illinois, and Paxton Academy, his family having moved in 1869 to a farm of five hundred acres near Paxton. In 1885, when about twenty-five years of age, he went to Peoria, Illinois, where he entered the banking house of C. E. & C. M. Anthony. In 1886 he was in Waterloo and Sioux City, Iowa, and in 1887 he bought a half interest in the abstract books and business of George W. Pardoe in Sioux City, at which time he formed the firm of Talley, Harvey & Company. This became one of the most important and reliable firms in that line in this county and Mr. Talley remained identified with the business up to the time of his death, a period of thirty-eight years. He served as secretary of the Paxton, Illinois, Building, Loan and Savings Association, which was organized in 1883 and is still in existence. A man of sound judgment and recognized ability, he long stood as an exemplar of the best methods and soundest principles in business practice. Aside from his business affairs, Mr. Talley's chief interest was in local history, into which he had delved with absorbing interest, bringing to light and putting into form for preservation many facts of importance and interest relative to the early history of this section of the state. In this labor of love he performed a service of immeasurable value, for his researches were made in a conscientious manner, and his articles embodying the results of his work are considered authoritative.

On June 15, 1892, at Cedar Rapids, Iowa, Mr. Talley was married to Miss Helen E, Lighty, who was born in that city September 20, 1869. She is a daughter of Davis Hewitt and Susannah Margaret (Corey) Lighty, the former of whom was born in 1828 and died in March, 1917. The latter, who was born in 1834, and died February 23, 1915, was a descendant of John Corey, of Southhold, Long Island, who was known as a whale commissioner in 1644. Mrs. Talley is a member of the Order of the Eastern Star, the Daughters of the American Revolution, the Woman's Club and the Entre Nous Club. To Mr. and Mrs. Talley were born two children, namely: Eleanor Frances, born September 2, 1899, who was married June 20, 1925, to David B. Byrnes, of Cambridge City, Indiana; and Louise Margaret, born June 13, 1911.

Politically Mr. Talley was a lifelong republican and took an active interest in public affairs. He spent three winters (1896 to 1899) in Washington, D. C., as clerk to the committee on printing. He served as chairman of the republican central committee in the campaign of 1900, when among the brilliant speakers whom he brought this locality were George D. Roberts, treasurer of the United States, and Marcus Hanna. In 1903 Mr. Talley was elected treasurer of Woodbury county, serving seven years with ability and honor. He was a member of Tyrian Lodge, No. 508, Ancient Free and Accepted Masons, of which he was master in 1908; Columbian Commandery, No. 18, Knights Templar, of which he was eminent commander in 1916, serving as grand warder of the grand commandery of Knights Templar in 1916-17; Abu-Bekr Temple, Ancient Arabic Order of Nobles of the Mystic Shrine; the Benevolent Protective Order of Elks and the Modern Woodmen of America. He is also a member of the Kawkeye Club, which was organized in 1883 and was in existence for nearly thirty-five years; the Sons of the American Revolution, the Sioux City Academy of Science and Letters, the Sioux City Country Club and the Sioux City Boat Club, of which he was a charter member in 1888. In religion he was a communicant of St. Thomas Protestant Episcopal church. Quiet and unostentatious, but kindly and gracious in manner, he made friends of all who came into contact with him, and no citizen of this community enjoyed to a more marked degree the friendship and good will of the people. As an evidence of this appreciation of his sterling qualities stand the following resolutions of regret which were adopted by the officers of the Sioux City Academy of Science and Letters:

"Resolved, that the officers of the Sioux City Academy of Science and Letters hereby express their earnest regret at the recent death of O. B. Talley, long a resident of this city and a member of this academy. Mr. Talley possessed an unusual interest in matters of pioneer history, and a rare talent in collecting the facts of such history and reducing them into interesting literature. He rendered eminent service in the collection of such data and in making it available to the public. His mind was quickened by his large interests and his wide reading, which made him a most companionable comrade. In his death Sioux City has lost a valuable citizen and student; this academy has lost a member of unusual talent, and his many friends will miss pleasant hours enlivened and brightened by his company."

Source: Allen, Arthur Francis, Ed. Northwestern Iowa Its History and Tradition, Volume III, 1804-1926. Chicago: The S. J. Clarke Publishing Company, 1927.

Another Brief Biography

Orville B. Talley (790) married Helen E. Lighty, June 15, 1892. They reside at Sioux City, Iowa. He is engaged in preparing Abstracts of Title and Searches of all matters connected with land titles in his county. He was Clerk to the Committee on Printing of the National House of Representatives for three years. He is active and persistent in everything he undertakes. He has labored faithfully to make our book a success, and is delighted that success is in sight. What others consider labor in searching out our family history he treats as mere pleasure. He is loyal to our family standard and glories in whatever tends to its advancement.

Source: Talley, George A. "A history of the Talley family on the Delaware, and their descendants; including a genealogical register, modern biography and miscellany." Philadelphia: Moyer & Lesher, printers, 1899, pp. 140-141
Book: https://archive.org/details/ahistorytalleyf00tallgoog
Article: https://archive.org/stream/ahistorytalleyf00tallgoog#page/n152/mode/2up
Also: http://www.mocavo.com/A-History-of-the-Talley-Family-on-the-Delaware-and-Their-Descendants/656943/153#152

Cory, H T. Ancestral Lines of Thomas Judd Cory, Clarence Richard Cory, John Harry Cory and Ancestral Lines of Alice Eleanor Adamson Cory, Roy Leonard Adamson Jr. Los Angeles, Calif, 1943.

Orville B. Tallwey was reelected County Treasurer for Woodbury County, Iowa, in 1903. http://www.newspapers.com/clip/3185089/orville_b_talley_elected_county/

Helen's DAR Record

Mrs. Helen Lighty Talley

DAR ID Number: 36700
Born in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.
Wife of Orville B. Talley.
Descendant of Sergt. John Roll, of New Jersey.
Daughter of David H. Lighty and Susan Margaret Corey, his wife, m. 1850.
Granddaughter of Elnathan Corey (1812-64) and Susanna Harr (1812-80), his wife, m. 1832.
Gr.-granddaughter of Thomas Corey (1784-1852) and Margaret Saylor (1788-1873), his wife, m. 1806.
Gr.-gr.-granddaughter of Thomas Corey (1739-1813) and Jane Roll, his wife.
Gr.-gr.-gr.-granddaughter of John Roll and Elizabeth, his wife.
John Roll served as sergeant in Capt. Peter Layton's company of Morris county, New Jersey ilitia. His will was probated 1782 at New Providence, N. J.
Also Nos. 20632, 28371, 29217.

Source: The National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution. Vol. XXXVIII. page 245.