Further, Willie had married Walter Dakeman in 1938 and she, her husband and son James moved into the Kidwell family house. As a result, there were two incomes for the household, Gertrude's, plus Walter's, working 44 hours a week as an assistant line chief for the phone company at $3,000 a year.
Thus for the ten years starting in 1938 the Kidwell clan was well represented locally. Although the Mattinglys had moved out, William and Effie Kidwell, along with daughter Gertrude and the three Dakemans shared the original house at 400, while the seven Gordons lived at 216.
William died in March 1947 after a long battle with heart disease, age 75. Effie passed away two years later at 76. Neither had drawn up a will and the children appear to have decided to simply leave the status quo undisturbed, with Gertrude and the Dakemans remaining in the house.
By the mid-1960s, however, young James Dakeman had moved out, leaving the two sisters and one husband, all in their 50s and eyeing retirement, in an aging house. Gertrude and Willie had never lived anywhere other than that house, but in 1970 they moved out, the Dakemans to an apartment on Van Dorn St. The house sat vacant while the family decided what to do, a problem exacerbated by the fact that it was still officially owned by the Kidwell parents, who had passed away over 20 years earlier but left no wills.
Finally, in June 1973 Susie Kidwell Mattingly, Virgie's children, Naomi Kidwell Wood, and Gertrude Kidwell signed over their interests in the house to Willie Kidwell Dakeman. In March 1974 Willie and Walter signed the old family house over to AG Denice as a trustee, finally ending 75 years and three generations of the Kidwells on Howell.
Two of the three Kidwell houses remain, blessing the Del Ray scene. The main house, at 401 E Howell, stands in its original, lovely configuration. The handsome Mattingly house across the street, from 1913, is also still there. Unfortunately, the Gordon house, at 216 E Howell, was torn down around 2002 to make the large lot suitable for two new houses.
William and Effie Kidwell, and daughter Gertrude Kidwell are buried in Ivy Hill Cemetery, along with James and Virgie Gordon and their son William who died at age 17 in 1932.