Nettie was long known to us as the wife of Austin Sawyer Avery, but it took many years to identify her full name and family. Nettie's name at birth was Julia Jeannett Osborn. She was the first child born to Russell Scott and Sabrina (McKinley) Osborn. As was recorded in the Hiram Osborn family bible (Hiram was Russell's father), Nettie was born on November 18, 1857. Her parents were residing in Illinois at the time of her birth. Her siblings were Norris Scott, Tirzah Ellen, Ulysses S. G., Nathan Earnest, Kate Florence, Oscar Orlando, Russell Carl, Charles Wesley, Hugh Richard and Alta Letticia.
The Osborn family moved to Story County, Iowa, before Nathan was born in 1866, after their father completed his service in the Union Army. They remained in Story County until they removed to Osborne County, Kansas, near Alton (then called Bull, or Bull's, City) in August of 1872.
|Austin Avery, 1916|
In about 1879, Nettie was married to Austin Sawyer Avery. Austin lived east of Woodston in Rooks County, just west of Osborne County. He had two children from his previous marriage to whom Nettie became an instant mother. Austin and Nettie had four children of their own, as well. They were Emma Ruth, Russell Hugh, Byron Humphrey and Iva May. Pictured is Nettie with her two oldest children, Emma and Hugh.
Nettie contracted consumption (tuberculosis) and went with her daughter, Emma, to Arizona in hopes of being cured. They returned to rural Woodston where Nettie died on January 1, 1905, at the age of 47. She is buried in the Woodston Cemetery.