William Winans

William Winans (1837-1919) (1-5-1-3-5-4-9)1 married Anna Droom. Worked as farmer and laborer. Started in OH, then moved to IL, then back to OH. Children:

William was probably born in Vermillion Township, Ashland County, OH. William was born in Ohio in 1837 and thrown on his own devices when his father John (1-5-1-3-5-4) had died in 1852. There is apparently a record from April 25, 1859 listing William in the Miami County, Ohio, paupers register as sick and destitute at the age of 19. William (Sr.) went to work on the farm of a third cousin, John,2 in Miami County, Ohio, and was there in 1860. William married Anna who was two years his senior, in about 1861. Anna's last name is not known for certain but family tradition says that it was Droom. We know from the 1880 census record that she had been born in Indiana3 to a father from Ohio and a mother from Kentucky. The couple's first child was Sarah who would have been born in about 1862. Isaac was born about a year later in about 1863. William did not serve during the Civil War.

While living in Illinois, the Winans family was beset with troubles. There were farm owners with the name of Winans in Effingham County and it is not unreasonable to believe that William, the father, was working on the farm of some cousin as his father John had done before him. We have no record of William owning any land in Illinois. As they were experiencing the challenges of their time, the family apparently moved to the area around Mansfield, OH in around 1884. Mary, who had married a man by the name of Hill, died in 1895 at the age of 27, leaving two children. The family was residing in Madison Township, Richland County, OH, at the time of the 1900 census with Anna, John, and Mary's two children, William and John Hill. William was working as a day laborer. Anna died in 1905. William relocated to someplace around Akron after 1900 where he later died in a County home just 26 days after the death of his son William J. in 1919 at the age of 82.

Dave Winans
September 2013

Thank you, cousin Dave, for sharing this biography of a Winans relative who had been hitherto unknown to us. Dave has been so kind as to send us a set of biographies of several of his own ancestors which we've also added to our Carey Family Album, as well as the following brief news item describing the tragic death of William's youngest son:

GEO. WINANS, aged 15, son of Wm. Winans, in John's Addition was coasting down a hill at Heineman's crossing last Monday, when he met with a terrible accident that resulted in instantaneous death. The boy successfully ran across the N. Y. P. & O. track but when he came upon that of the B. & O. the sled stopped. Some boys yelled to young Winans that a train was coming and he knocked his sled from the track. But just as he had risen about halfway up the westbound fast line struck him and he was thrown into the ditch alongside of the track. He was picked up and put on the train, which had stopped, but his brother having meanwhile arrived the body was conveyed to his father's residence. The funeral took place Wednesday morning.

Mansfield Herald, January 22, 1885

Dave later wrote to us:


Thanks for looking for Anna. What is in doubt is her maiden name and not her existence. The 1870 census from Miami County Ohio (attached) shows her.3 The reference to 1880 census (also attached from Illinois) came from my uncle Thomas Winans of Coshocton, Ohio, who did the research for our family. Uncle Tom still has no computer and he did his work the old-fashioned way by traveling through Illinois, Indiana and Ohio as well as to New Jersey and Pennsylvania and printing his documents from microfiche. Tom found the research of Major Ira and made copies to help him develop our history.

My uncle refers to William's (1837) family as "snake-bit." William's father, John, had died in 1852 when William was only about 15 years old. We know that John had been born in PA and moved to Ohio with his father Isaac in around 1807. John married "Nelly" North on August 5, 1822 and leased a farm in Vermillion Township, Ashland County, Ohio. In 1860, William was in the poor house at the age of 19. William went to work on a cousin's farm and was in Illinois working as a farmer in 1870 with his wife and six kids. The speculation about Anna's maiden name may come from the 1889 census record from Illinois that names her (right age and state of birth) by something other than her Christian name. It looks like "Droom" or something like it.

The troubles for this family continued. I am attaching the obituary that my uncle found for the youngest boy, George. My branch of the family clearly had a thing for trains. Both George and William J. were killed by them.


1 The numbers which appear in this page refer to the numbering system used by Mrs. Alice Winans Egy Woolley in her book, Winans Family Genealogy.
2 This third cousin appears to be John Clark Winans (1-5-5-1-1-9), whose real estate value was listed at $7,400 in the census record which Dave located. In those days, that indicated that he was a prosperous farmer! John Clark Winans was the third cousin of William's father John, and is mentioned in the story of Staunton township pioneers compiled by another Winans cousin.
3 But the 1870 census, which found her in Effingham county, IL, lists her birthplace as Ohio.
This page was last updated 6 Nov 2013.