Lillian Augusta Graves

ID#  450, (1862-1942)
Great-granddaughter of Samson Striker
Great-grandaunt of Faye Louise Doyle
Descendants of Samson Striker
     Lillian Augusta Graves was born on 19 August 1862 in Fairfield, Jefferson County, Iowa.1 She was the daughter of Roswell Graves and Eugenia C Clapp. She married first Joseph Rankin Gibbins on 3 January 1883 in San Francisco, San Francisco County, California. She was left a widow when Joseph Rankin Gibbins died on 30 May 1885.2,3,4 She married second Perry Summers on 25 February 1893 in Alturas, Modoc County, California.

In June 1901, the San Francisco Call reported that Lillian had testified before the grand jury that she had witnessed the lynching of five men in Lookout, Modoc County. The case caused a sensation in the area, witnesses were threatened, two were eventually murdered, and the accused were found not guilty. No evidence that Lillian testified at the trial has been found.5

She was left a widow when Perry Summers died on 18 July 1938.6,7 She died on 31 March 1942 in Tonasket, Okanogan County, Washington, at age 79.1

Lillian's obituary in the The Tonasket Times on 3 April 1942 read:
"LILLIAN SUMMERS--Pioneeer Teacher Came West By Ox Team At Age Of Two -- Mrs Lillian Summers since 1910 a resident of Okanogan Cnty & who had lived for the last 20 years in Tonasket passed away on the evening of 31 Mar 1942. Born 19 Aug 1862 at Fairfield IA, she attained the age of 79 yrs-7 mos-12 dys. Although she had long been failing in health, she was still surprisingly active for a person of her years. Her passing was a surprise & shock to many, even those who knew her well. She recently had suffered a stroke & was taken to St Martin's Hosp where she markedly improved, although recovery was but temporary. With her parents & an older brother & sister, Lillian Graves, the dau of Rev & Mrs Roswell Graves crossed the plains by ox team at the age of 2 yrs. The family settled in California, where she spent her girlhood & received her education. After her graduation from the Golden State Academy, she entered the teaching profession which she followed in various parts of California for 29 yrs. On 26 Feb 1893, she was united in marriage to Perry Sumers of Alturas, Modoc Cnty, CA. During their 16 yrs of residence in northern California their children were born. In 1909 with her family, she moved from Bieber CA to Everett WA, where they resided for 1 yr before moving to a cattle ranch which they had purchased near Wauconda. She continued in the teaching profession for 13 yrs in Okanogan Cnty before moving to Tonasket in 1922. During her early childhood she became a member of the Congregational Church of which her father was the pastor. She kept this faith until her death. Throughout her life many of her activities were centered in the church. She took an active part in the church affairs in communities where she resided. For 12 yrs she was the superintendent of the Junior Church at Tonasket. Throughtout her life she took an active interest in public affairs & to the last kept herself well informed in current events. Preceding her in death was her husband Perry Summers who passed away in Jul 1938. Those surviving her are 2 children, Mrs Roma Reavis-Prescott WA & Guy Summers-Tonasket; a brother RH Graves of Drain OR & 2 sisters: Mrs Bertha Sealock of Santa Rosa CA & Mrs Alice Broder of Seattle WA, besides nieces & nephews. She was a devoted mother, a loyal wife & a respected citizen of her community. Those who knew her, knew of her great love for her home & flowers."1

She was buried in Block 4, Row 3, Lot 14, Tonasket Cemetery, Tonasket, Okanogan County, WashingtonG.1

"When her family was living in Lassen County, Lillian ("Aunt Lillie") was sent to Oakland to attend Mills College. After less than a full term there, she eloped with her first husband and they were married at the Palace Hotel in San Francisco. This man was older than her father, and may have been the reason she was sent to Mills (to get her out of his way). To this day there is a story at Mills College about the early days there, when young ladies were only allowed to have relatives as visitors on the weekends; and how one student was visited by her "uncle" several times, until she eventually ran away with him and married him. It seems quite possible that Aunt Lillie was the basis for this story.

"Joe Gibbins, years earlier, had served a term in a state prison for a second degree murder committed in Sonoma County. The California State Archives records show that he was incarcerated on June 29, 1872, and released on December 27, 1878. He was described as being 5 feet 8 inches tall, fair complexion, blue eyes, black hair, with long spare features, a straight sharp nose, and a full inventory of his scars.

"Aunt Lillie and Joe Gibbins had two children but both died young. Joe got into a dispute with a family in a rural area of Shasta County in April of 1885, shot at them but missed, then fled. A Shasta County deputy sheriff was sent out to apprehend him at the end of May, and a shootout took place in Big Valley. The deputy was killed and Joe was mortally wounded.

"Aunt Lillie was a schoolteacher when she married Perry Summers. They had a son and a daughter, and later moved to Washington State and remained there. Their daughter, Roma, returned to Lassen County when she retired, and lived in Bieber until her death."4

Census Records

YearPlaceHead of Household
1870Contra Costa County, CaliforniaRoswell Graves8
1880Table Rock Twp, Siskiyou County, CaliforniaRoswell Graves9
Last Edited=4 Aug 2019

Child of Lillian Augusta Graves and Joseph Rankin Gibbins

Children of Lillian Augusta Graves and Perry Summers


  1. [S2009] Various Contributors, Lillian Augusta Summers, Find A Grave Memorial # 43328403, Database and images (
  2. [S1071] Sally Haven, compiled history, "Joseph" (… : accessed 25 Jan 2011), (says, quoting a newspaper article dated 3 Jun 1885, "he died at his son's home in Big Valley and was buried at Lookout").
  3. [S2009] Various Contributors, Joseph Rankin Gibbins, Find A Grave Memorial # 33460305, Database and images (
  4. [S542] Barbara Hill, database report, 10 Jul 2003, Berkeley, California. FTM report "Descendants of Elias CLAPP."
  5. [S1232] “Chronicling America” online newspapers, Libary of Congress, Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers (
  6. [S542] Barbara Hill, database report, 10 Jul 2003, Berkeley, California. FTM report "Descendants of Elias CLAPP", Perry Summers' obituary.
  7. [S2009] Various Contributors, Perry Summers, Find A Grave Memorial # 43328443, Database and images (
  8. [S446] Roswell Graves, 14 July 1870 U.S. Census, Contra Costa, California, HeritageQuest,
  9. [S445] Roswell Graves, 14 Jun 1880 U.S. Census, Table Rock, Siskiyou, California, HeritageQuest,
  10. [S45] Barbara Hill, "Rev Graves Family," e-mail message from e-mail address (Berkeley, California) to Faye West, 9 Mar 2002.