Edger and Janice Rankin, married 1943-2012
The Edger Rankin-Janice Lees wedding took place June 19, 1943 and the couple stayed married for 69 years. The wedding took place at Lisbon Presbyterian Church. In the front row are Janice and Edger with niece Moneen Mielke as the flower girl. The back row is best man Darwin Meissner, maid of honor Alice Lees, John Lyons, Helen Rankin, Pvt. Wesley Lees and Shirley Rowe. Pvt. Lees was a soldier in World War II and was stationed at Camp McCoy at the time of the wedding. Photo by:
Edger (aka Edgar) Rankin married Janice Lees on June 19, 1943. He was 25 years old and she was 23. Both had attended Sussex Main Street School's two-year high school, Edger graduating in 1934 and Janice in 1937.
Both were from prominent extended families of Sussex-Lisbon. They would be married for 69 years, with Janice dying at age 91 on Nov. 25, 2012. Edger died June 11, 2013 at age 94.
Edger was part of a pioneering Scotch-Irish family which in 1843 claimed land on what is today Plainview Road, about midway between Hillside Road and Highway 164. Today it is the Payne & Dolan gravel pit.
The odd part of the extended Rankin family was in four generations, the home claim farm did not go to the firstborn son, but to someone lower on the scale. Edger was the third born, as he had a sister and brother ahead of him, but that was typical for the Rankin family during the course of the first four generation. And the four generations all lived in the same home: James, David, Walter and finally Edger.
The first part of the home was built in 1866, and then multiple additions were built over the years. The Rankin families lived in the home from 1866 to 1980. Edger sold the home in 1972, but continued living in it until 1980, when he moved with Janice into Sussex.
In the next 12 years, tenants of Payne & Dolan occupied the house. Then in February, 1992, the Lisbon Fire Department, which multiple other departments, burned the home to the ground.
Edger and Janice had three children: Glenn, Charlotte and Sharon. They had seven grandchildren and at the time of their deaths, 12 great-grandchildren. Both Edger and Janice were buried at the Lisbon Central Cemetery. Their funerals were held at the Lisbon Presbyterian Church on Hillside Road. In 1847, part of the founding families of the Lisbon Presbyterian Church were Rankins, and the Lisbon Central Cemetery is the traditional final resting place of a considerable number of former church members.
Janice Lees Rankin went on to college to become a teacher prior to marriage and served at the elementary level. She was from an extended family of Lisbon-Sussex that included Lilly Lees, who married the Sussex Village doctor, George Lawler. She would become a prominent landowner in Sussex. The extended Lees family in the area had a downtown Lees General Store and the Sussex State Bank had a Lees as director, shareholder and cashier.
Names listed for the area in the 1923 directory of Waukesha County, included Clarence as a merchant, Charles as a farmer and real estate dealer, Albert as a farmer, Edgar as a farmer and George as a merchant.
Meanwhile the Rankin family did spread out in Lisbon and at one time, they had nearly 375 acres of farm land.
While Edgar Rankin sold his farm of 140 acres in 1972, he continued farming for another eight years, when in 1980, he had a massive farm and home auction that drew an estimated 600 people. It was run by William Slade of Fort Atkinson. Notable sales included a corn huskers glove for $1.50, a set of horse harnesses for $8, two horse collars for $1, a 45-star flag for $3, a wicker baby buggy for $200 and an Oliver 14-foot wheel disc for $925.
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