Jane Williams Roberts was born in Traymodic, Wales, on August 4, 1840.  Nothing is known of her parentage and childhood.  “Jenny,” as Jane was familiarly known, became a milliner and married Edward Isaac Roberts (b. June 20, 1834, in Traymodic, Wales), a wagon maker and carpenter, on September 30, 1868, in Wales.  Edward, a widower, had in early life emigrated to Australia, where around 1857 he married Nancy Jane Adams.  Nancy bore him four children: Hannah Roberts Hartin (b. 1857), John (b. 1859), Edward (b. 1863), and Joseph (b. 1865).  Jenny Roberts became the stepmother of Edward’s four children.

The couple and their children settled in Junction City, Davis County, Kansas, about 1870, remaining there for about five years.  Then, in 1875, they joined the Grizzly Callen Party and journeyed by covered wagon to Prescott, Yavapai County, Arizona Territory, settling in Sycamore Canyon.  Roberts was naturalized in Prescott in 1876.  The 1884 Great Register of Yavapai County indicates that the family was living in the Lower Agua Fria.  They moved to Prescott in 1889 and took up residence at 136 N. Pleasant St. They became devout members of the Congregational Church. 

In April 1896 Jenny was elected treasurer of the newly formed Prescott Political Study Club.  The 1900 Federal Census shows the couple residing at 140 N. Alarcon St.  The census listed Edward as a carpenter by occupation, although it indicated that he had not been employed for six months.  Having suffered for many years from tuberculosis, Edward died on April 9, 1902, at the age of sixty-eight.

After her husband’s death, Jenny’s own medical problems worsened.  In the spring of 1909 she journeyed to San Diego, San Diego County, California, to visit with her daughter Hannah Roberts Hartin and her husband John Hartin and to obtain medical treatment for heart disease.  Her condition worsened rapidly and she died there of heart failure on August 17, 1909.  She was buried beside her husband in the Citizens Cemetery in Prescott.

The obituary in the Arizona Weekly Miner (August 25, 1909) described her as “an estimable woman” and “a devout Christian.”  Hannah Martin donated a photograph of her mother, which hangs in the Bashford House at the Sharlot Hall Museum, Prescott.

Donors: Mr. and Mrs. John Hartin
Photo Located: Roberts – Hartin Family Collection, PC-40
Updated: 9/29/2017, Tom Collins