|Westward to Wyoming
Curles Shim Appleby
1836 - 1898
The territory of Wyoming was formed in the year 1868, with the total population of white settlers
numbering less than seven thousand. In 1890, it became the 44th state to enter the Union.
In 1877, thirteen years before statehood, the Lander Valley noted the arrival of the Curles Shim
Appleby family. They located on a ranch below Squaw Creek Canyon and developed what became
known as one of the finest dairy and vegetable ranches of Sweetwater County. (The area became a
part of Fremont County in 1884.) They supplied the area, including the mines, soldiers and passing-
immigrants, with their produce.
Curles Appleby was born 29 September 1836 in New Jersey to William Ivers and Sarah (Price)
Appleby. The name of the town has appeared in records with different spellings, such as Treeklestone
or Trubless, etc. In 1849, he came across the plains,a thirteen year old traveling with his parents in a
covered wagon, to Utah Territory.
On the 28th day of June 1872, in Opher, Utah, Curles married Nancy Bruster (Gustin) Sly, daughter
of Thomas and Mary (Peterson) Gustin. Nancy was born 21 March 1842, in Vanburen County, Iowa and
as an infant came to Utah with her parents. It was the second marriage for Curles and the third marriage
for Nancy. Nancy had seven children by a first marriage to James Clvin Sly, and there may have been
children in the marriage of Curles and his first wife, Mary. The children of Curles and Nancy Appleby
were Sarah Marinda (Appleby) Pope; Curles (or Curtis); Lonidor Bruce; Susannah ((Susie)Preble));
Earnest M. and Archie C.
Curles Shim Appleby suffered a fatal heart attack 7 January 1898. The obituary notice in the Wind
River Mountaineer newspaper, described him as a kind, affectionate husband and father, well respected
by friends and noted that he served faithfully within the Methodist Church. He is buried in the Mount
Hope Cemetery in Lander, Wyoming.
Nancy Brewster Appleby remained on the ranch after the death of her husband, and her obituary in
the Wyoming State Journal, 29 December 1926, describes the ordeal of those years in Wyoming.
"The widow with the children, continued to ranch, struggling as only pioneers do to make both ends meet,
educating and providing for her children. She was called into many homes in times of sickness and her
ministering hands saved many lives in the days when doctors were few and nurses there were none.
In addition to this, her great heart went out in sympathy for a helpless babe left alone by the mother
whose life was the price of her birth. This child, named Ethel, she adopted and took as her own." Nancy
lived until 20 December 1926. She, too, is buried in the Mount Hope Cemetery.
Listed in the records of the Fremont County Pioneer Association, as being among the "Brave Pioneer
Families Who Came To Wyoming Prior to 1880, is the name Curles Shim Appleby.
(note: An article regarding the father of Curles Appleby appears in this Newsletter series of mini-
biographies, titled, William Ivers Appleby, in the Newsletter Index.)
researched and written by Dee Appleby - 1985
page: 21 May 2001
reviewed: 05 March 2005