Museum the New Llano Colony

Raymond W. "Ray" Bradshaw

Birth: He was born in Iowa around 1883.  

Family Information: Son of William E. "W.E." and Mary Emma Bradshaw.

Brother of Carl, Paul and Oral Bradshaw.

Husband of Annette "Nettie" (Emry) Bradshaw.

Father of Madeline and Verda Bradshaw.

Description: On his draft registration card, dated September 12, 1918, it was noted he had grey eyes with brown hair and was short and of medium build. At that time, he was working as a manager at a clothing store.  

Pre-Colony History: In 1900, he was living with his parents in Batavia, Iowa. In 1910 he was living in Locust Grove, Iowa with his wife and daughter while he worked as a salesman in a dry goods store. He was still there in 1920, but working as a clerk in a clothing store.

He, his wife and their two daughters, along with his father and brothers, Carl and Paul, came to the colony from Iowa -- some time after the death of Ray's mother in 1930 at Batavia, Iowa.  

Home in Colony: In 1934 he was living at the Gila, New Mexico location.  

Job in Colony: In 1931 he volunteered to help with tearing down Cravens, Louisiana, where colonists were salvaging materials from the old sawmill town.

In July 1931 the veneer plant was going in full force with Johnny Dougherty, Long, Ole Synoground, Carl Bradshaw, George Jensen, Slaughter, Ray Bradshaw, Fred Hamel, Hoag and Roede on the job; as well as Bennie Brown, Jimmie Brown, Helen Joe Dougherty, Lucille Oberlitner, Rhea Mae Baldwin, George Maki and Jimmie Dix.

In December, 1931, George Pickett took Martha Dougherty and the Bradshaws to Houston, Texas where all but Pickett would remain to act as salesmen in the three Llano foodstores obtained in that city through fellow co-operator, J.E. Wilson.

These stores were well established, simply needing capable and trustworthy operators who would be willing to live on a communal basis. An excellent apartment house containing 16 rooms was available where a community kitchen and dining hall could be established.

Mr. Wilson also mentioned how quite a number of people could be fed on the "waste" foods from the stores. These might include food in damaged, dirty, or unlabeled cans and/or fruits and vegetables with "spots" which were "unsaleable" to the fastidious trade. (NOTE: The fate of those stores in Houston has not been verified, but for several months they were frequently mentioned in the "Llano Colonist" and then never mentioned again.)

He spoke fluent Spanish and in January 1934 he had the store at Gila in fine condition. Each week saw some valuable addition to the stock, which together with old friend Roede's fine display of Gila-made harness, and Mahler's array of Gila-tanned hides, shoe soles and leggings, made the Gila store one to be counted with. In April of that year he was elected to the Council for the Gila location.  

Other Info: In June 1931 the family had visitors -- Mr. and Mrs. Harry Layer and their two children -- Mrs. Layer was Nettie's sister, Opal -- had come to stay for some time and went immediately to work on their first day in the colony.  

Post-Colony History:  

Death: He died in 1950 in Los Angeles, California.  

Sources: US Census: 1900, 1910, 1920; US Draft Registration: WWI; "Llano Colonist": March 14, 1931, June 6, 1931, July 4, 1931, December 19, 1931, May 14, 1932, May 28, 1932, January 13, 1934, April 14, 1934; California Death Index 1940-1997  


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