The following history was researched and authored by Alonzo Lewis Gaubert, husband of Charline Virginia (Code) Gaubert and son-in-law of Milton and Edna Code. The text is presented consistent with the original. For the sake of privacy, names and information pertaining to living individuals have been removed from this website version with a few exceptions from whom permission has been acquired. In addition, there are a few headings that have been added in order to enhance the listings in the outline.


This is the story, such as it is, of a pioneer family who settled in Ontario, Canada and whose descendants emigrated to the Upper Mid-West of the United States.

They were lumbermen, merchants and farmers. Sodbusters who braved the fierce winters of Dakota Territory, first in their sod huts and later in fine homes. Hardy, courageous souls, who like thousands of others of the same sturdy stock, settled, developed and built this country of ours. To them we owe much of what we enjoy today and which we sometimes fail to fully appreciate.

At its beginning, it was a family of Anglo-Saxons; English, Scotch and Irish, but, as of now, it is a typical American family that has resulted from the melding of many strains. The English, Scotch and Irish have been joined by German, Indian, French, Swedish, Norwegian, Italian, Bulgarian and Polish.

Facts have been gleaned from Family Bibles, newspaper clippings, headstones, cemetery records, town, county and state offices, such as Minnesota Department of Health, North Dakota Office of Statistical Services and, of course, from the memories of family members who have shared those memories for the benefit of us all.

It has been a challenge, interesting and a lot of work, but a real pleasure. Hopefully, it will spur some younger member of the family to dig deeper and longer, so that they might broaden the coverage.

Every effort has been made to check and double-check the facts to ensure accuracy, but it is possible that errors have occurred. If so, please be forgiving.

The efforts of many have been employed in the gathering of information and I am deeply grateful to all, especially to Sallie Waits for her invaluable assistance in typing, refining and preparing this manuscript for delivery to the printer.

Here Is your copy. We hope you enjoy it and that you will keep it current.

We are very grateful for the good fortune that made us part of this fine family.

Arlington, Texas

Fifth day Of April. 1978

​ Charline Virginia Gaubert Alonzo Lewis Gaubert

​ "Chuckie" and “Lew”


This story of The Code Family is dedicated to the present Patriarch and Matriarch of The Family

Cecil John Rhoades

Dorothy Louise (Code) Rhoades

lovingly known as Uncle Cec and Aunt Dot.


Thomas Code, Born:

Married: Died: Buried:

Elizabeth Twamley, Born: County Wilco, Crownolay, Ireland

Died: Buried:


William James, Born:

Married: Died: Buried:

Elizabeth Chamney, Born: County Wiclo, Crownolay, IreIand

Died: Buried:


Abraham Code, Born: Canada, January 1815

Married: Perth, Ontario, Canada by Rev. M. Harris of Perth, Ontario on Friday, June 28, 1839.

Died: Wednesday, February 10, 1897. Age 82 years.

Buried: Park River, North Dakota.

Lettetia James, Born: Canada, Sunday, March 10, 1816

Died: Thursday, July 24, 1884. Age 68 years, 4 months.

Buried: Park River, Dakota Territory

Lettetia was the middle child of thirteen, having six brothers and six sisters. (In the records, I found the following spellings of Lettetia - Lettecia, Letitia, Letteia and Lettia)

Siblings of Lettitia James:

John Born: July 4, 1805

William Born: February 23, 1807

Jane Born: November 24, 1809

Thomas Born: November 17, 1811

Mary Born: April 7, 1813

Elizabeth Born: February 10, 1815

Ann Born: April 6, 1819

Nathaniel Born: December 16, 1831

Rebecca Born: March 19, 1823

Sarah Born: September 20, 1825

Benjamin Born: October 26, 1827

Edward Born: May 15, 1831

The Children of Abraham and Lettetia

Thomas Born: March 24, 1840 Died: May 11, 1918

Mrs. Thomas Died: February 22, 1915

Elizabeth Born: October 24, 1841

William Born: September 13, 1843

Abraham Born: May 25, 1847 Died: March 19, 1911

Mrs. Abraham Died: April 17, 1900

Benjamin Born: June 2, 1849 Died: October 20, 1929

John Born: December 17, 1852 Died: November 13, 1907

Edward Born: February 10, 1855 Died: January 10, 1947

The following information about Abraham Code and his son William was found during the review of various papers and, I believe, is of sufficient interest to include in the family story.

(This is an exact copy of the handwritten will set forth below)

Last Will and Testament

​ I Abraham Code of Park River Walsh Co. North ​ Dakota being of sound mind and memory and ​ understanding do make and publish this my ​ last will and testiment in maner and form ​ following to-wit

​ It is my will and I do order that all my just ​ debts and funeral expences be duly paid and ​ satisfied as soon as conveniently can be after ​ my decease.

​ I give and bequeath unto my sons Thomas Code, ​ Abraham Code, John Code, Benjamin Code, Edward ​ Code and unto my daughter Elizabeth Foster each ​ the some of one hundred fifty dollars $150.00

​ I give and bequeath unto my son William Code the ​ some of one dollar $1.00 ​ all the rest residue and remainder of my estate ​ I give and bequeath unto my son Edward Code

​ I do nominate and appoint my sons Edward Code ​ and Benjamin Code to be the executors of this my ​ last will and testiment

​ In witness whereoff I have hereunto set my hand ​ and seal this 5th day of December A. D. 1894.

​ A. Code

Eleanor Code Ladd passed on this bit of information, i.e., Beryl Code Blomgren, daughter of Benjamin Code, had heard that William was left only one dollar because his father disapproved of his heavy drinking.

Abraham Code had a brother name Richard Coad, who lived in Huron County, Ontario He originally lived in Lanark County, Ontario and when he moved to Huron County, he changed the spelling of his name from CODE to COAD. The reason is unknown, however, the family name in Ireland was spelled CODD.

Richard Coad married a Mary James of Perth, Ontario, who died in 1884. At the time of her death, Abraham went from Dakota Territory to Huron County, Ontario to see his brother. At this time, W. E. R. Coad, M. D. met Abraham. Dr. Coad was the grandson of Richard Coad and in November of 1944 was practicing in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.

The following is extracted from an article appearing in the Walsh County Press, Park River, North Dakota, Wednesday, November 7, 1977. The article from which it was extracted was one that had been printed in the Grafton News and Times, a weekly newspaper, on October 26, 1932. It refers to the year 1884.


Park River was a kind of dark horse among the pioneer towns. It was expected that It would bear the name of Kensington, a post-office which had been in existence for many years. In this vicinity stood the famous "Half-Way-House", where Bill Code dispensed hospitality. Here, the farmers from the west-end lodged when they hauled wheat to Grafton or transacted business at the county seat. The hotel was not pretentious. It measured 14 feet by 16 feet. A heating stove stood in the middle of the room and mattresses were strewn all over the floor. The guests would sit with their feet toward the blazing fire and all found quarters highly satisfactory. William Code was a member of the first board of county commissioners of Walsh County, being one of the original appointees of Governor Ordway of Dakota Territory.

Bill Code was the third child of Abraham and Lettetia and the brother Of Charline' s grandfather, Edward Code.


Edward Code, Born: Lanark County, Ontario, Canada, Saturday, February 10, 1855.

Married: Kensington, Dakota Territory, Wednesday, March. 28, 1883.

Died: Lisbon, North Dakota, Friday, January 10, 1947. Age: 91 years, 11 months.

Susan Matilda Wadge, Born; Stevens, Ontario, Canada, Tuesday, February 4, 1865.

Died: Park River, North Dakota, Monday, April 18, 1904. Age: 39 years, 2 months

Buried: Park River, North Dakota.

Their children :

Mary Lettitia, Born: Park River, Dakota Territory, November 26, 1884

Died: Santa Barbara, California, April 30, 1972. Age: 87 years, 5 months.

Buried: Fairmount Cemetery, Denver Colorado.

Milton Edward, Born: Park River, Dakota Territory, December 19, I886.

Died: Rock Springs, Wyoming, January 21, 1962. Age: 75 years, 1 month.

Buried: Oakwood Cemetery, Lisbon, North Dakota.

Fordyce William, Born: Park River, Dakota Territory, September 25, 1888

Died: Boise, Idaho, October 25, 1945, Age: 57 years, 1 month.

Buried: Boise, Idaho

Mary Lettitia was known as Letitia Minnie. Her father entered her birth in his family Bible and entered it as Mary Lettitia. Vivian Code, the wife of Fordyce Code, informed me that, at one time, she spoke to Minnie about not being called Mary and that Minnie remarked that "Mary" she always associated with the Virgin Mary and so it must have been her choice to be known as Minnie. She was confirmed on May 16, 1901 at St. Peter's Episcopal Church in Park River, North Dakota and the Confirmation Certificate shows Minnie Code.

Minnie was married to Theodore Johnson at Park River, North Dakota on Friday, November 27, 1908, the day after her twenty-fourth birthday. The marriage didn't last long and ended in divorce. Her second husband was Schuyler Emmons. They lived in Russell, Kansas for a number of years until his death. Her third husband was Lawrence L. Sutton of Kansas City, who she married in 1942. He preceded her in death by a few years. They are buried in Denver, Colorado. The last years of their lives they lived in Santa Barbara, California.

Fordyce William and Vivian Schutt were married in Boise, Idaho where they made their home and where Vivian still lives at this writing. They had two children, both born in Boise. Suzanne (Code) Hudelson Sullivan, born Tuesday, March 9, 1926, and William Fordyce, born Monday, October 22, 1928.

Dr. Livingstone

The following newspaper clippings, pertaining to Edward and Susan are of considerable interest.

Sunday, Fargo Forum - - Fargo, North Dakota April 12, 1942

Lisbon, North Dakota - The story was a newspaper sensation of the day, 87-year-old Edward Code reminisces when one gets him to tell of the part he played in it.

The story - - - well, it was the identification of a mysterious "Dr. Livingstone" who lived in Park River, North Dakota as the father of the late multi-millionaire, John D. Rockefeller, Sr.

In 1879, Code joined his three brothers, William, Benjamin and John near Park River. There he ' 'squatted" on land which he homesteaded when it had been surveyed.


Two years later, in 1881, a stranger came and bought rights to a quarter adjoining Code' s. His name was Dr. Livingstone and he had, as his occupation, the trade of healing. "Doc" Livingstone and Code became well acquainted and "fiddled" many an evening in the long winter months, together.

Livingstone had a partner named Johnson, also known as a doctor, who wore long hair and dressed as an Indian. Johnson and Livingstone would pass out handbills to the townspeople describing the "doctor's" professional qualifications in glowing terms. They would take Livingstone's medicine jug and proceed to minister to their clientele.


Livingstone, evidently, made some money, for he and Johnson both acquired property. When he left Park River, he deeded his property to a son-in-law named Briggs, who was married to John D. 's sister.

Reporters of eastern papers had been hunting the nation over for John D. Rockefeller's father, largely because the son had gained such worldwide fame as an oil tycoon. A woman reporter traced John D. 's father to Freeport, Illinois. She wrote the story to that point. Then a young man reporter took up the search. Armed with a picture of the elder Rockefeller, the young reporter finally found an old druggist in Freeport who recognized it. The druggist hunted up the jug in which he had been shipping medicine to Rockefeller and gave the address as Park River.


Arriving in Park River the reporter sought out the mayor to inquire for his quarry. The mayor recognized the picture as that of Dr. Livingstone. He sent the reporter to Code.

The reporter compared descriptions and dates with Code, then checked Walsh County real estate transfers. He found a transfer from William Rockefeller to the son-in-law, Briggs, covering the farm next to Code's and other property. (Who’s Who lists John D. Rockefeller as the son of William Rockefeller). Having clinched his story, the young reporter hastened back east to release his "beat".

Mr. Code later moved to Lisbon where he has resided for many years.

Among other recollections, the Lisbon man has, is that when his first son was born, "Doc" Livingstone came to him and offered him a dollar if he would name the boy William. He had already determined he would name the son William for his brother who had encouraged him to come to Park River to homestead. The son, William, is now located at Boise, Idaho.

Notes pertaining to foregoing clipping:

I’ll bet when Grampa Code and "Doc" Livingston fiddled on those lory winter evenings that they tried some of "'Doc's' medicine, don't you? Grampa was batching it the first two years he homesteaded.

Apparently, Grampa changed his mind about naming his first son William. His first son was name Milton Edward, his second son was Fordyce William.

Another note of interest pertaining to Edward Code. This is an excerpt from the Souvenir Program of Park River's Diamond Jubilee 1884-1959, held on July 1-2-3-4, 1959. On page 13 the following may be found.

“At the turn of the century, Park River began to take on metropolitan airs. Ed Code installed the local telephone system. A couple of years later a long-distance line was run into town and connection made with the outside world. Then the municipal light plant and waterworks was built, and Park River took its place in the sun of strictly up to date cities. “

Park River was incorporated in 1884. At that time, Edward Code had been living in the area for five years, having come from Ontario in 1879.

This is an exact copy of a newspaper clipping from Walsh County Press, Park River, North Dakota, about April 22nd or 23rd, 1904.

Death of Mrs. Edward Code

The sudden death of Susan Matilda Code, the beloved wife of Edward Code, on Monday afternoon was a sad shock to the family and their many friends in this community. Death was due to apoplexy.

Last December she was stricken for the first time with the disease and after hovering between life and death for several days gradually began to regain her former health and was apparently almost fully recovered. Sunday afternoon while in the act of preparing the family dinner she received her second attack and never regained consciousness till the death summons released her from her suffering twenty-four hours later.

Deceased was the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. John Wadge of this city and was born in the town of Stevens, Ontario February 14, 1865. She was the fifth oldest child of a family of eight children, six of whom survive her. She came with her parents to this state in 1879 and the same year the family settled in Kensington. On March 28, 1883, she was married to Mr. Edward Code, who with three children - Minnie, Milton and Fordyce - are left to mourn her sad demise.

The was a woman of very lovable and kind disposition and an affectionate wife and mother. Her excellent qualities of heart and mind made her friends legion. She was a member of the Episcopal Church and always took a prominent part in its work. She was also an active and esteemed member of the Eastern Star Order of this city.

The funeral was held from St. Peter's Episcopal Church on Wednesday afternoon, Rector Currie officiating. The floral offerings were numerous and very beautiful. The remains were laid to rest in Park River Cemetery.

There are surviving the deceased, her parents, Mr. and Mrs. John Wadge of this city, and six brothers and sisters, namely - - Mrs. Elizabeth Townsend, Thomas Wadge, Mrs. Geo. Nicklin, and Mrs. T. F. Waugh, Park River; E. A. Wadge, Wales, N. D. ; and W. E. Wadge, KensIngton .

Among the out-of-town relatives attending the funeral were: Dr. James, Bathgate; Ed. James, St. Thomas; Mesdames E. B. Gordon and Jas. Watson, Willow City; Mr. and Mrs. Harry Dickson, Crystal; William Gordon, Langdon; Jas. Code, Hampden; Wm. Code Edmore and Mrs. Jas. McDonald, Grafton. The sympathy of all goes out to the family in their hour of bereavement.

(Note pertaining to clipping) St. Peter's Episcopal Church, Park River, N. D. is located at the corner of Code Avenue and Sixth Street.

Another note of interest; According to a Letter written to their Milton E. Code, on September 22, 1961, the brother of Susan Matilda Wadge, William E. Wadge and his wife Effie, were Living in Langley, British Columbia, Canada.

Clipping from Walsh County Press, Park River, North Dakota, week of Monday, January 13, 1947.


PARK RIVER, N. D. - (SPECIAL) - Funeral services were held here Sunday for Edward Code, 91, one of the first settlers in this community, who died in Lisbon where he had been residing with a son, M. E. Code.

Mr. Code was born in Lanark County, Ont., February 10, 1855 and resided on a farm with his parents until 1872 when he moved to Carlton Place, Ont., to learn the trade of cabinetmaker, entering the furniture shop of William Patterson where he served his apprenticeship.

He worked in a furniture shop In Brockville, Ont. for four years and came to North Dakota in 1879.

He took up land near Park River, which was then in Pembina County on March 28, 1883, he was married at Kensington, N. D. to Susan M. Wadge and they were parents of three children, Minnie, Milton and Fordyce.

The family moved from the farm to Park River In 1895 and Mr. Code went into business with Joe Erwin, purchasing Erwin's interests later. He was the first toll operator here after the Northwestern Bell Telephone Co. established a long-distance line. He later built the first telephone exchange in Park River, operating until 1909.

His wife died in Park River in 1904. Surviving are a son, M. E. Code of Lisbon, and a daughter, Mrs. L. L. Sutton, Santa Barbara, California.


Raynard Potts, who emigrated to Maryland from Germany in the middle of the 18th Century. He was an overseer on a large tobacco plantation.


Jacob Potts, who was born in Maryland in 1761 and emigrated to upper Canada at the end of the 18th Century. He died in 1838 at age 77.


Jacob Potts, who was born either in Maryland or Canada in 1785 and died in Canada in 1867, age 82.

He married Helen Wyckoff and they settled in Charlotteville. He was a Justice of the Peace and his public life was such as to entitle his name to a place among Norfolk County's distinguished sons.


Edwin Lockwood Potts, born Norfolk County, Ontario, Thursday, November 30, 1809. (Either in Long Point Settlement or Charlotteville). Married: Probably in Long Point Settlement on Tuesday, September 30, 1834. Died: Probably in Long Point Settlement in 1876 at age 67. Buried:

Martha Bell, Born: Died: Buried:


John Edwin Potts, Born: Vittoria, Ontario, Canada, Tuesday, October 9, 1838. Married: Wednesday, September Il, 1861. Died: Buried: Simcoe, Ontario

Margaret Louise Wilson, Born: Ontario, Canada, Sunday, November 6, 1842 Died: Detroit, Michigan, Saturday, December 18, 1915. Buried: Simcoe, Ontario

John Edwin Potts was the first member of his family to emigrate to the U. S. from Canada. He was a prominent lumberman in AuSable, Michigan and owned a palatial Victorian style home.

The following newspaper article from an unknown newspaper, but datelined Oscoda, Michigan, March 12, should be of interest.

"John E. Potts, a lumberman in AuSable in the year 1883 hung up a world's record by cutting 30,000,000 board feet of lumber in 1883."

John Edwin and Margaret Louise had four children, Charles Edwin Potts, Effie (Mrs. A. D. Anderson), Marion and Lena (Mrs. W. W. Sumner).


Samuel Youhill, Born: England Married: Died: Buried;

Mary J. (Maiden name unknown), Born: 1826 Died: 1916 Buried: Crookston, Minnesota


Charles Edwin Potts, Born: Vittoria, Ontario, Canada, Wednesday, July 16, 1862. Married: Thursday, July 8, 1887. Died: Crookston, Minnesota, Monday, December 21, 1925, age 63 years, 5 months. Buried: Oakdale Cemetery, Crookston, Minnesota

Hannah Greenfield Youhill, Born: London, Ontario, Canada, Monday, October 14, 1861. Died: Fergus Falls, Minnesota, Monday, January 24, 1944, Age years, 3 months. Buried: Oakdale Cemetery, Crookston, Minnesota.

Their Children

Edna Louise (Mrs. Milton Edward Code)

Born: AuSable, Michigan, April 22, 1888 Died: Rock Springs, Wyoming, January 22, 1962
Buried: Lisbon, North Dakota Age 73 years, 9 months

Ethel Marguerette (Mrs. Howard H. Clapp)

Born: AuSable, Michigan, February 22, 1890 Died: Fargo, North Dakota, March 17, 1969 Buried: Crookston, Minnesota

Mary Edwina (Mrs. Earl Wilcox)

Born: Marion, Indiana, October 6, 1900

The copy of the newspaper clipping below explains my reason for showing the name, Ethel Marguerette. At the time of her death, Marguerite and Howard were living in Adams, N. D. They had four children; Geraldine (Mrs. Russell Frederickson), Robert, Mildred (Mrs. Joseph Jansen), and Mary Jean (Mrs. Thomas Overend).

Mary and Earl lived in Starbuck, Manitoba, Canada. They had two sons, Donald and Kenneth. At the present time, Mary lives in Calgary, Alberta, Canada.

The clipping, I suppose from Crookston Daily Times, May, 1926.


State of Minnesota County of Polk, ss.


in the Matter of the Estate of Charles E. Potts, Decedent ; The Stace of Minnesota, to Hannah Greenfield Potts, Edna Louise Code, Ethel Marguerette Clapp, Mary Edwina Wilcox and all persons interested in the final account and distribution of the estate of said decedent: The representatives of the above named decedent, having filed in this Court their final account of the administration of the estate of said decedent, together with their petition praying for the adjustment and allowance of said final account for distribution of the residue of said estate to the person thereunto entitled : Therefore YOU and EACH OF YOU, are hereby cited and required Co show cause, if any you have, before this Court at the Probate Court Rooms in the Court House the city of Crookston, in the County of Polk, State of Minnesota, on the 1st day of June, 1926, at 10 0'clock A. M. why said petition should not be granted. Witness: The Judge of said Court, and the Seal of said Court, this 6th day of May, 1926. (Probate Court Seal) MYRTLE I. HOVLAND Judge of Probate.

L. S. Miller, Crookston, Minn., Attorney for Petitioner.

The following is a copy of a newspaper clipping from the Crookston Daily Times, Crookston, Minnesota, sometime in December, 1925.


C. E. Potts, prominent citizen of Crookston, was called by death on December 20th at his home on Hunter Street.

Mr. Potts took a great interest in public affairs for the upbuilding of Crookston and was held in high esteem by all his fellow men. He was a faithful member of Christ Episcopal Church and was instrumental in the rebuilding of the Church here recently.

Mr. Potts was born July 16, 1863 in Victoria, Ont., Canada. He was a descendant of Col. Edwin Lockwood Potts, who served in the Revolutionary War, and who was a member of the United Empire Loyalist Party. This party gave their allegiance to the British King and in return were granted lands on the shore of Lake Erie in Ontario.

Mr. Potts spent most of his boyhood days in Canada and he finished his education at Upper Canada College, Toronto. He was associated with his father in the wholesale lumber business in AnnSable, Michigan, and came to Crookston 18 years ago as manager of the Atlas Lumber Co., which he purchased later and organized as the Home Lumber Co., of which he was president and manager at the time of his death. He was married to Hannah G. Youhill, July 8, 1887 Mr. Potts is survived by his widow and three daughters , Mrs. H. H. Clapp, Mrs. Earl Wilcox and Mrs. M. E. Code of Crookston and three sisters, Mrs. W. Sumner of Detroit, Mich., and Mrs. A. D. Anderson of Montreal, Canada, who were here to visit their brother a short time before he passed away, and Miss Marion Potts of Montreal.

Funeral services were held Wednesday, December 23. Short services were held at the home at 2 p.m. where the body had been lying in from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Impressive services were held in Christ Episcopal Church at 3 p.m. by Rev. G. G. Curtis, assisted by the choir. Mrs. Curtis sang "I am a Pilgrim and I am a Stranger", a favorite hymn of the deceased. Miss Millie Kohler played the organ. Commitment services were also conducted at Oakdale Cemetery where interment was made.

Pall bearers were E. Y. Walsh, S. M. Sivertson, Judge William Watts, Charles Wilder, R. E. Werkman and L. D. Foskett.

“We have always held Mr. Potts in the highest esteem and feel that the business as well as the social world of Crookston have lost a power for good" a friend of Mr. Potts said in commenting on his death.

Corrections to the above:

Date of Death: December 21, 1925, instead of December 20. Date Of Birth: July 16, 1862, instead of July 16, 1863. Vittoria not Victoria AuSable not AnnSable. The Information about Col. Edwin Lockwood Potts has to be incorrect as Edwin Lockwood Potts was born November 30, 1809, more than twenty years after the Revolutionary War.


Milton Edward Code, Born: Park River, Dakota Territory, Sunday, December 19, 1886. Married: Crookston, Minnesota, Wednesday, June 10, 1908. Died: About fifteen miles east of Rock Springs, Wyoming, on Interstate 80 about ten o’clock Sunday morning, January 21, 1962. Age 75 years, 1 month. Buried: Oakwood Cemetery, Lisbon, North Dakota.

Edna Louise Potts, Born: AuSab1e, Michigan, Sunday, April 22, 1888. Died: Rock Springs, Wyoming at approximately eight o clock in the morning, Monday, January 22, 1962. Age 73 years, 9 months. Buried: Oakwood Cemetery, Lisbon, North Dakota.

Milt and Edna L. met in Park River, N.D. and it was here that Milt courted her. On the tenth of June, 1908, they were married in the home of her parents in Crookston, Minnesota. The Reverend Mr. Richard Cox, an Episcopal minister officiated. A review their Marriage Certificates, one issued by the State of Minnesota and the other by Richard Cox, Rector of Christ Church, Crookston, Minnesota, reveals some conflicting information. First, they show Edward Milton Code rather than Milton Edward Code; second, they show Milt as being from Walsh County, Minnesota, when should have been Walsh County, North Dakota.

Edna L' s sister, Miss Marguerite Potts and Milt's father, Edward Code, were the attendants. After a wedding supper they took the Northern Pacific Flyer to Minneapolis, where they honeymooned at the Nicollet Hotel.

They first lived in Park River, N.D., where Dorothy was born in January of 1909. I believe that the same year they moved to Lankin, N.D., as a letter from "Grampa Potts". C. E. Potts, Manager of Atlas Lumber Co., Crookston, Minnesota, dated September I5, 1909, was mailed c/o Milt at Lankin, North Dakota. I am not certain as to whether they stayed in Lankin until Milt went to Toppenish, Washington or not. You make your own guess as the story unfolds.

  1. A letter from Frank Dellings, Proprietor of Milton Telephone Exchange, Milton, N.D., and Osnabrock Telephone Exchange, Osnabrock, N.D., dated August 13, 1909, recommending Mllton Code who had worked for him or three years as a telephone trouble shooter.

  2. A letter from Karl J. Farup, Cashier, The First National Bank, Park River, N.D. stating that "Mi1ton E. Code has for a number of years been engaged in business in this town in connection with the Local telephone 1 inert and recommending him highly.

  3. A letter from B. Courtney, District Plant Chief of the North-Western Telephone Exchange Company, an associate company of American Telephone and Telegraph Co., dated Grand Forks, N. D., November 12, 1910. The letter stated that Milton Code had worked for him the past year as switch board man at Grand Forks, N. D. and recommended him highly.

(Let me note here that Milt often said that Charline was conceived in a hotel room in Grand Forks. Edna L. and Dorothy Lived in either Lankin or Park River and Milt commuted or whether they all lived in Grand Forks, is unknown to me.)

MEMORANDUM OF AGREEMENT, Made and entered into in duplicate, this 1st day of December A. D. 1910, by and between S. K. Bartholomew of Park River, North Dakota, party of the first part, and Milton E. Code of Grand Forks, North Dakota, party of the second part,

WITNESSETH, That the said party of the first part, for himself, individually, and for and in behalf of the Yakima Valley Telephone Company of Washington, a corporation, hereby agreed to employ, and by these presents does employ, the said party of the second part, as a workman in connection with the operating of the said Yakima Valley Telephone Company, for the period of one year from date, and agreed to pay him, the said party of the second part, for his services in such connection, and in the capacity hereinafter more fully set forth, the sum of One Hundred Dollars ($100 00) per month, payable monthly, at the end of each and every month for the said period of one year.

In consideration of the above and foregoing, the said party of the second part hereby agrees to accept, and does accept, of said employment, with the said party of the first part, and with the said Yakima Valley Telephone Company, and agrees to forthwith remove from Grand Forks, North Dakota, and establish his residence at some point in the Yakima Valley of Washington, for the purpose of enabling him to enter upon the immediate discharge of the duties in connection with said employment.

IT IS MUTUALLY AGREED AND UNDERSTOOD, that the said party of the second part shall act as general supervisor of all telephone lines and switch boards in connection with the operating of the said Yakima Valley Telephone Company and its system, and that he will give and devote his full time and attention and best energy to the duties divolvlng upon him in such capacity as supervisor, as aforesaid, and that he faithfully and diligently do and perform all of the work which usually and ordinarily belongs to or is connected with such branch of the telephone business. That in the discharge of his duties as such supervisor of telephone lines and switch boards, he shall work under the general directions, and subject to the orders of the party of the first part named herein, who is the president and general manager of the said Yakima Valley Telephone Company, and that he will at all times keep the said party of the first part informed as to all matters of interest in connection with the work under his supervision, and that he will make due report of any and all things which may be of interest to the said of the first part or to the said Yakima Valley Telephone Company, immediately and directly to the said party of the first part.

IT IS ALSO AGREED, That any unusual or extraordinary piece of work coming under the notice of said party of the second part, shall be first: reported to said party of the first part, and the same shall be then looked after by said party of the second part in the manner and form outlined to him by the said party of the first part, and that in all matters and things, he, the said party of the second part, agrees to faithfully and diligently look after the welfare and interests of the said party of the first part and of the said Yakima Valley Telephone Company.

WITNESS the hands and seals of both said parties, this 1st day of November, A. D. 1910. IN Presence of Ethel Cameron S. K. Bartholomew (SEAL)

The following handwritten appendage is part of the above agreement.

It is understood that this agreement is to be in force immediately on the arrival of M. E. Code at the property of the Yakima Valley Telephone Company.

​ Signed: S, K. Bartholomew

The above is an exact copy in all details of the above agreement.

Milt went to Toppenish, Washington and Edna L., who was pregnant, took Dorothy and went to live with her parents in Crookston. Charline was born in Crookston in November of 1910 and several months later, the three of them joined Milt in Toppenish. While they were living in Toppenish, Edna L.'s father, C. E. Potts, purchased the Atlas Lumber co., which he had been managing and formed the Home Lumber Co. In 1915, Milt and family, which now consisted of three children, Edwin having been born at Toppenish in 1913, moved to Crookston where Milt helped Mr. Potts in running the lumberyard. Grampa Potts died in 1925 and, as the story goes, trouble started brewing shortly after. It seems that Gramma Potts decided that she was going to run the business and apparently that didn't set too well with Milt. The following letter sets that forth pretty clearly. Whether he ever delivered this letter to Gramma Potts is unknown, but it reflects what the problem was, at least as Milt saw the problem.

Crookston, Minn. Nov. 5th-26.

H. G. Potts, President of Home Lumber Co. Crookston, Minn.

Dear Madam:

This is to notify you that, as I told you before, I have been ready at all times, and am still ready to go back to the Home Lumber Co. providing you are willing to let me manage the business as I was elected to do at the annual meeting by the Board of Directors of the Co.

Yours very truly,

M. E. Code

(The above is an exact copy)

Apparently, things didn't work out for in March of 1927, Milt and family moved to Lisbon, North Dakota, where Milt took over the management of the Thompson Lumberyard, which he managed until after World War II when he and his sons established their own lumberyard, Lisbon Cash Supply. When Milt and Edna L. left Crookston their family had grown from three to seven as Eleanor, Charles, Marjorie and Betty were born in Crookston. In 1928, the last of their children, Lois, was born in Lisbon.

On Sunday, June 8, 1958, a reception was held in honor of their Golden Wedding Anniversary (June 10, 1958) at Lisbon, N. D. In addition to a multitude of friends, every one of their living relatives were in attendance. Let's see, there were Milt's sister, Minnie, and Edna L.'s sisters, Marguerite and Mary and their husbands and families, plus all of their immediate family, which consisted of each of the children and spouses, all of their grandchildren, and even one of them had a spouse and one great grandchild. Fifty-eight relatives, twenty-six of them kids, it was nothing short of a miracle that mumps, measles, broken bones or something didn't prevent somebody from showing up.

Three and a half years later, January of 1962, Milt and Edna L. were on a trip to California with their friends, the Bob Hansens of Lisbon. Bob was driving when they ran into a ground blizzard and before they could stop they ran under a truck and trailer that was jack-knifed on the highway. Milt was killed instantly, and Edna L. died in the hospital the next morning without knowing that Milt had preceded her.

The Hansens were seriously injured. Mrs. Hansen spent months in the hospital recovering, only to die of cancer a couple of years later. Fortunately, Milt and Edna L. had enjoyed relatively good health right up to the time of the accident.

Services were held at Holy Trinity Episcopal Church, Lisbon, North Dakota at ten o clock Saturday morning, January 27, 1962. It was a bitterly cold day, much snow on the ground, the Church was filled to overflowing and during the services a goodly number stood outside the Church in the snow and cold to pay their respects to Milt and Edna L. They were placed in the vault at Oakwood Cemetery and were interred in the spring.

Obituary: Milton and Edna Code

​ Crookston Daily Times - Crookston, Minnesota

​ Thursday — January 25, 1962

Services for Mr. and Mrs. Milton Edward Code, former residents of Crookston, Minn., who died from injuries suffered in an auto accident, will be Saturday at Holy Trinity Episcopal Church in Lisbon, N. D.

Mr. Code, 75, died in the accident Last Sunday morning near Rock Springs, Wyo. Mrs. Code, 73, died from injuries the next morning.

They Lived in Lisbon, N. D., 35 years, and were active in the Episcopal Church of both Minnesota and North Dakota.

Mr. Code was in the retail lumber business 45 years and was retired at the time of his death. He was a Mason and patron of the Order of the Eastern Star.

Mrs. Code was Past Grand Matron of the Order of the Eastern Star of North Dakota and National Committee member of the Grand Chapter of the Order of the Eastern Star.

She was an officer in the district and region of the Federated Women's Club, and in 1945 was chosen as North Dakota's first "Mother of the Year".

Both are survived by six daughters, Mrs. Dorothy Rhoades, Minneapolis, Mrs. Charline Gaubert, Dallas , Texas, Mrs. Eleanor Ladd, Beverly Hills, Calif. , Mrs. Betty Moslet, Red Lodge, Mont. , and Mrs. Lois Egan, St. Paul; two sons, Edwin and Charles, both of Lisbon, N. D., 26 grandchildren and two great grandchildren.

Mr. Code is survived also by a sister, Mrs. L. L. Sutton, Santa Barbara, Calif. Mrs. Code is survived also by two sisters, Mrs. Howard Clapp, Adams, N. D., and Mrs. Earl Wilcox, Winnepeg, Manitoba.

Discussion of Milton and Edna Code

Let me visit for a moment about Milt and Edna L.

Without fear of contradiction, I can state that Milt was a character, short, stocky and full faced. He was a driver, a doer, a go-getter, a promoter at heart, filled with dozens of ideas. He had to be all of these things to raise a family of eight kids, right in the middle of the depression years. Jolly, personable, a tease, opinionated, stubborn, sensitive and emotional. The famed "Code Tears" are a family trait passed on by Milt. He was a Mason and for years the Patron of his Eastern Star Chapter. Popular, well-liked, known to take one too many, once in a while, and widely known in lumbermen, club and church circles. He and Edna L. were the backbone Of Holy Trinity all of the years they lived in Lisbon. With eight kids they not only furnished a good share of the congregation, but also a good share of the financial support. All in all, Milt was quite a guy, well loved by children and grandchildren.

In 1918, Milt invented a '"Non-Striking Automobile Crank". This was a crank, ingeniously designed so that when cranking an automobile, it would disengage itself in case the engine backfired, thereby causing the crank to kick back. Many a wrist and arm was broken in those days in just that manner. Among the family papers there is a copy of the specifications of the "Non-Striking Automobile Crank, a copy of an Agreement between Milton E. Code and Oscar August Backes, dated June 8, 1918. This was an agreement. where for half the rights of the invention, Oscar Backes agreed to pay all costs for obtaining a patent. There are two letters, one dated July 17, 1918, the other August 2, 1918, from E. E. Vrooman & Co.. Patent Attorneys of Washington, D. C., addressed to Milton E. Code pertaining to application for a patent. (There Is nothing that tells whether a patent was ever obtained.)

Let me recite one incident that pretty well points out Milt’s aggressiveness and determination.

At a lumbermen's convention, Milt bumped into a fellow he hadn't seen since school days. While reminiscing, they recalled an incident meaningful to each of them. It seems that they attended rival schools and were playing football against each other and Milt's friend had the ball and was well on his way to a touchdown when Milt tackled him with such force that they were both knocked out. Don't remember if Milt ever told me who won the game, but it is a typical example of the spirit that Milt put into a thing, whether it be work or play.

Edna L. was born in AuSable, Michigan but moved several times as her father moved from location to location cutting timber. When she was about twelve, she lived for a couple of years in Magnolia, Arkansas, later she lived in Marion, Indiana, then Park River, N. D., where she met Milt. She was a grand person, dignified, polished, strikingly handsome, gracious, accomplished in the social graces but even more important than that, she was a wonderful wife and mother. Hers were hands that had known the old-fashioned scrub board all day long; hands that baked, ironed, cooked, cleaned, nursed, entertained - did all those things that Mother's hands always have done. Our boy’s mouths still water at the thought of their grandmother's hot rolls, right out of the oven. She raised eight children and cared for her father-in-law for over thirty years and through it all she maintained a quiet, but none-the-less genuine sense of humor. Always a loving, faithful helpmate to Milt. She gained renown over the years as reflected in the preceding newspaper clipping.

In addition to being Worthy Grand Matron of the North Dakota Chapter of the Order Of Eastern Star, 1951-1952, she served many terms as Worthy Matron Of her home Chapter, Minerva Chapter, O. E. S., Lisbon. N. D.

In 1931, she won first place in Fourth District of Federation of Women's Club with her essay "The Church That is Within Thy House". In 1936, her essay "Grand Father's Experiences in North Dakota" won first place in State Federation of Women's Club.

One time, I teasingly dubbed her "Grand Responder" and the appellation stuck with her the rest of her life. I think she kinda liked it. "Grand Responder" she was, her accomplishments were significant and many, but none exceeded her contribution as a mother and wife. Much that is good has descended from this staunch, proud woman of the North Dakota prairies. She was fiercely proud of North Dakota and truly loved her adopted state.


Dorothy Louise (Code) Rhoades

Born: Park River, N. D., Jan. 7, 1909

Married: Minneapolis, Minn. Dec. 19, 1930

Cecil John Rhoades Born: Minneapolis, Minn., April 29,1902

Charline Virginia (Code) Gaubert

Born: Crookston, Minn., Nov. 22, 1910

Married: New York, New York, Oct. 19, 1936

Alonzo Lewis Gaubert Born: Livermore Falls, Maine, March 27, 1910

Edwin Arthur Code

Born: Toppenish, Wash., Aug. 23, 1913

Married: Petersburg, N. D., March 9, 1946

Wilhelmina Karen (Hildre) Code Born: Grand Forks, N. D., May 13, 1913

Eleanor May (Code) Gregory Ladd

Born: Crookston, MInn., May 8, 1916

Married: Minneapolis, Minn., May 12, 1947

Craig Burton Ladd Born: Minneapolis, Minn., May 30, 1919 Died: Rhein Main, Germany, Jan. 12, 1949

Charles Milton Code

Born: Crookston, Minn., Nov. 3, 1917

Married: Minneapolis, Minn., June 29, 1945

Marion Nora (O'Brien) Code Born: Baker, Mon., Jan. 5, 1922

Marjorie Ann (Code) Johnson

Born: Crookston, Minn., Mar. 22, 1922

Married: Moorehead, Minn., Jan. 23, 1942

Arnold Joseph Johnson Born: Lisbon, N. D., Jan. 2, 1921

Betty Lou (Code) Moslet

Born: Crookston, Minn., Oct. 11, 1923

Married: Minneapolis, Minn., Nov. 1, 1942, Divorced Oct. 8, 1970

Stanley LeRoy Moslet Born: Luck, Wis., April 17, 1924

Lois Ann (Code) Egan

Born: Lisbon, N. D., Dec. 14, 1928

Married: St. Paul, Minn., Apr. 17, 1948

Leo Francis Egan Born: Savage, Minn., May 16, 1925


A couple of explanations to assist future generations who might possibly read the foregoing statistical information.

Craig Ladd had been a bomber pilot during WWII and had flown many dangerous missions. At the time of the Berlin Airlift (If you want to know when that was, run to your history book) he crashed during a snowstorm on the way back from Berlin to Rhein Main Airfield.

Carol Jean and Roger Johnson ventured out on to the ice of the Sheyenne River and apparently slipped and fell into an opening around a bridge abutment.



Edwin Arthur Code whose 1978 address is: 2131 Almond Drive, Arlington, Texas 76011.

Clipping from Walsh County press, Park, River, N. D. November 7, 1977 Subject: Code’s Half-Way-House


Eleanor Ladd whose 1978 address is; 568 South Sunrise Way, Palm Springs, California.

Original of the handwritten will of Abraham Code. Clipping from Walsh County press, park River, N Subject: Death of Mrs. Edward Code Certification of confirmation of Minnie Code.


Marjorie Ann Code (Mrs. Arnold Johnson) whose 1978 address BOX 29, Lisbon, North Dakota 58054

A letter written by Fordyce but signed with his and Vivian's names and directed to Milt and Edna, offering their sympathy for the death of C. E. Potts. The letter also described their Christmas which was the first Christmas that they were married. Letter dated December 27, 1925.

A clipping from an unknown newspaper with an article datelined Oscoda, Michigan, March 12. Subject: John E. Potts establishing a world record by cutting 80,000,000 board feet of lumber in the year 1883.

A picture of a Victorian style home, the home Of J.E. Potts, AuSab1e, Michigan.

A clipping from Crookston Daily Times, Crookston, Minnesota. Subject: C.E. Potts, Pioneer Answers Final Call.

A clipping from Walsh County Press-Week of Monday, January 13,1947. Subject: Pioneer Farmer of Walsh Dies. (Edward Code)

A letter to Milton E. Code from his Uncle and Aunt, William E. Wadge and his wife Effie, dated September 22, 1961.

Another clipping which I suspect Is from the Crookston Daily Times. Subject: Estate of Charles E. Potts.

A letter from Charles E. Potts to Milton E. Code at Lankin, N.D., dated September 16, 1909.

A letter from M.E. Code to H. C. Potts, President of Home Lumber Company, dated November 5, 1926.

Souvenir program of Park River’s Diamond Jubilee 1884-1959.

Two letters from E.E. Vrooman & Co. Patent Attorneys, Washington, D.C., to Milton E. Code, dated July & August 1918.

Copy of specifications of "Non-Striking Automobile Crank".

Copy of Agreement between Milton E. Code and Oscar August Backes, dated June 8, 1918.

Three letters of recommendation for Milton E. Code from:

1 - The First National Bank of Park River, N.D. dated July 31, 1909. 2 - Milton Telephone Company, Milton N.D. dated August 13, 1909. 3 - The Northwestern Telephone Exchange Company, Grand Forks, N.D. dated November 12, 1910.

A copy of Memorandum of Agreement, dated December 1, 1910 between Milton E. Code of Grand Forks, N.D. and S. K. Bartholomew of Park River, N.D., acting in behalf of the Yakima Valley Telephone Company of Washington.

A Certificate of marriage, State of Minnesota for Edward Milton Code and Edna Louise Potts, dated June 10, 1908.

A certificate from the minister, The Reverend Mr. Richard Cox, certifying that Edward Milton Code and Edna Louise Potts were joined together in Holy Matrimony on June 10, 1908.

Letter from Dr. W. E. R. COAD, dated November 20, 1944 from 420 Edmonton St., Winnipeg, Manitoba to Edward Code.

Letter re: Potts family dated February 2, 1953 written to Mrs. M. E. Code from Rev. H.J. E. Webb, Rector of St. Paul's Church, Port Dover, Ontario. He also had charge of the church at Victoria, Ontario


Charline Virginia Code (Mrs. A. L. Gaubert) whose 1978 address is 2217 Violet Lane, Arlington, Texas 76011.

A clipping from Crookston Daily Times, Crookston, Minnesota, January 25, 1962. Subject: Death of Mr. and Mrs. Milton E. Code

State of Minnesota, Division of Vital Statistics: Certificates of Death of Charles E. Potts and Hannah Greenfield Potts.

The Code Family Bible, published in New York by the American Bible Society in the year 1859.

The following entries are in the Family Bible.


Thomas Code (24th March 1840) Elizabeth Code (24th October 1841) William Code (13th September 1843) Abraham Code (25th May 1847) Benjamin Code (2nd June 1849) John Code (17th December 1852) Edward Code (10th February 1855)


Abraham Code and Lettia James on the 28th of June 1839. Marriage performed by Rev. M. Harris (Perth, Ontario).


Lettetia Code (24th July 1884) Abraham Code, Sr. (10th February 1897) John Code (13th November 1907) Mrs. Abraham Code, Jr. (17th April 1900) Abraham Code, Jr. (19th March 1911) Mrs. Edward Code (18th April 1904) Mrs. Thomas Code (22nd February 1915) Thomas Code (11th May 1918) Ema Code (16th January 1916) Benjamin Code (20th October 1929) Fordyce Code (25th October 1945) Edward Code (10th January 1947) Milton E. Code (21st January 1962) Edna L. Code (22nd January 1962)


Mrs. Fordyce Code whose 1978 address is: 1918 Brumback, Boise, Idaho 83702

Family Bible - Entries in the handwriting Of Edward Code (Grampa Code). It was kept up to and including the birth of Dorothy Louise on January 7, 1909 - 10 a.m..

The following information is for the benefit of anyone who might wish to do further research on the family.

Minnesota Department of Health, 717 S.E. Delaware St., Minneapolis 55440 furnished the following: "This office does not have records prior to 1908. If the event occurred prior to 1908, please contact the Clerk of District Court in the county of occurrence; or the Minneapolis or St. Paul City Health Department if the event occurred in one of these cities.

North Dakota State Department of Health, Division of Vital Records, 17th Floor, State Capitol, Bismarck, North Dakota 58505 furnished the following: "The first law requiring birth and death registration in North Dakota became effective July 1, 1893, but was repealed in 1895 and not re-enacted until 1899. Even though registration was required by law, it was poorly done and there was very few births or deaths recorded prior to 1900 or in the early 1900' s. More events were recorded beginning about 1908, but it was not until about the 1920's that registration became about 90 percent complete. "

Office of the Registrar General, Macdonald Block, Parliament Buildings, Toronto, Ontario M7A IY5 furnished the following: "Records for the Province of Ontario commence with July 1, 1869 and there are no official records prior to that date."