Jane Hawkins Cummings was born on 7 April 1899, in St. Louis, Missouri, and graduated from Georgetown University in Washington, D.C. She was the daughter of Dr. Harry and Jane “Dearie” Hawkins (Hay) Cummings. Returning to St. Louis, she married Harry James Cantwell Jr. on 19 May 1922 at St. James Catholic Church, in Potosi, Washington County, Missouri. Harry James Cantwell Jr. was the son of Harry James Cantwell Sr. (1859–1917) and his second wife Catherine Donnelly Cornelius (1869–1918), daughter of Julia (Long) Francis and Thomas Cornelius, a St. Louis attorney. Jane passed away on 25 March 1984 at her daughter’s home in Springfield, Missouri. All Cantwells are buried in the Cantwell plot in Calvary Cemetery in St. Louis.

Jane and Harry Cantwell Jr. lived with Jane’s mother, Jane H. “Dearie” Cummings (1871-1956) at 4545 Lindell Blvd. Dr. Harry James Cummings passed away on 15 May 1921. To Jane and Harry Jr’s union, six children were born in St. Louis: Harry James III, Cornelius “Connie” Cummings, and Jane Theresa, have passed away, with three children still living. All children married, having children of their own living in the Missouri area in 2020.

Harry James Cantwell Jr. was born on 1 May 1899 in New York and passed away on 1 June 1948 Belgrade, Washington County. He came to St. Louis as a teenager. After obtaining his law degree from Washington University, Harry received his Missouri license in 1927 and practiced law in St. Louis. Harry handled many important law cases in St. Louis. In the 1930s, Harry partnered with Timothy R. “Ted” Cornin in the United Service Car Company, taxicab, and parking enterprises in St. Louis. Jane was a homemaker. She inherited the talent of her mother to crochet and knit. Jane took care of their children and loved her Cocker Spaniel dogs.

In June 1946, the family moved permanently to Belgrade to the homestead inherited from Harry James Cantwell Sr., who migrated to Missouri in the late 1880s. He was a leading lead miner in the Missouri Lead Belt in southeastern Missouri and a land owner of 3,350 plus acres in Washington County. One hundred and sixty acres of the original homestead are still held in the family.

In the spring of 1955, Jane Cantwell moved to Richmond Heights to manage and run Peter Pan Nursery School until her retirement in 1972. She then moved back to Belgrade until her death.

(Sources for the above essay included birth, death and marriage certificates, Globe-Democrat newspaper articles, other affidavits, and family information.)

Written by Abbie Cantwell Bast
January 2021

© 2021, St. Louis Genealogical Society

Jane Hawkins Cantwell
Jane Hawkins (Cummings) Cantwell
Photo in the collection of Abbie (Cantwell) Bast
Used with permission

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Last Modified: 29-Apr-2021 14:44