George and Elsie Farley, married 69 years

By Marj Frew

One of the headlines from the August 27, 1950, Martin Messenger read “Double Wedding Unites Tuthill Young People”

Miss Elsie Jackson and George Farley, and Elsie’s brother, Harold (Sonny) and Donna Farmer, were the two couples wed in the ceremony which was reported as follows:

“At a two o’clock ceremony in the Presbyterian Church, Sunday, August 20, 1950, in Valentine, Nebr., marriage vows were exchanged between Miss Elsie Jackson, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Merrill Jackson of Tuthill and George Farley, son of Mr. and Mrs. Floyd Farley of Valentine, and between Miss Donna Farmer, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Roy Farmer of Tuthill and Harold Jackson, son of Mr. and Mrs. Merrill Jackson of Tuthill.

The Rev. John Spence officiated at the ceremony in the presence of relatives of the young couples. There were no attendants and the double ring ceremony was used.

Donna chose an aqua blue suit with white accessories and wore a corsage of white carnations and Elsie chose a navy suit with white accessories and a white carnation corsage. 

After the wedding ceremony the guests were entertained by Mr. and Mrs. Floyd Farley at a plate luncheon at their home.

The rooms were decorated with baskets of multi-colored flowers and a beautiful blue and white wedding cake decorated the serving table.

Both brides grew to womanhood in Bennett County and since their graduation from Bennett County High School Elsie has been employed by the Pine Ridge Equipment Co. in Martin and Donna took teachers training and has taught the Suhre school in Bennett County.

George graduated from Bennett County High School also and has since been employed as driver for the Bennett County Co-op.

Harold spent some years in the military service and now operates his own ranch near Tuthill, where the couple will reside.

Elsie and George will make their home in Martin.

The two couples left for their honeymoon in Yellowstone Park and other points of interest in the west immediately after the luncheon.”

Visiting with Elsie almost 70 years later, she reminisced that one of the most special parts of her marriage to George was that for many years, they stayed close to Sonny and Donna. “Throughout the years, I always appreciated the fact that we were always close to my brother, Sonny and Donna. We spent our honeymoon together in Yellowstone, and always lived close to each other.”

The young Farley couple spent their entire life in Bennett County, first in Martin, and they later moved to the country near Cody, Neb., where they worked for Fred Hoffman. After a time they moved to the Harrington area, where they did share cropping.

From Harrington, they made their final move when they bought their ranch in the Tuthill area. Elsie remarked, “George likes to say that even though we moved three times, we kept the same mailman!”

Elsie’s word of advice to young couples is to “work together.” This has been proven to be good advice, as George and Elsie approach their 70th year of marriage. Elsie still resides at their ranch home, and George is a resident at Bennett County Nursing Home.

George and Elsie’s family includes their daughter, Karen and Bob Coyle; son, Jim and Kristi Farley; and Ron, who passed away in 1982. George and Elsie also have four grandchildren, Hilary Farley, Rocky Farley, Georgia Miller, and Andy Coyle. They have also been blessed with seven great-grandchildren. 

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