What's New

Photo of the Month

Minerd.com Blog


National Reunion


Cousin Voices

Honor Roll

In Lasting Memory

In the News

Our Mission and Values

Annual Review

Favorite Links

Contact Us


Louisa Ann (Ream) Wilkins
(1811- ? )


Louisa Ann (Ream) Wilkins was born on April 7, 1811 or in 1814 in Ursina, Somerset County, PA, the eldest daughter of Samuel W. and Mary (Rheims) Ream. Records citing her birth year differ.

On Nov. 3, 1833, when she would have been age 22, she married William Wilkins ( ? -1850s) of Addison Township, Somerset County.

They were the parents of 11 known offspring -- Levi Wilkins, Margaret Heinbaugh Stanton, James Wilkins, John Wilkins, Louisa Mowry, William W. Wilkins, Rosanna Lane, Alfred Norlan "Alf" Wilkins, Levida (or "Louvenia") Wilkins, Julia A. DeLauter and Cornelia Wilkins.

Their home in 1850, as per the United States Census, was on a farm in Addison Township, Somerset County. Their residence was on the hilly slope of the famed "Fort Hill," which at the top sat a flat, mesa-like space once inhabited prehistoric Native American Monongahela people dating from A.D. 1275 to 1300. The hill contained many freshwater springs which would have been convenient for cooking, drinking, bathing and gardening for the family.


Above: aerial view of Fort Hill. Below: farm of "Mrs. Wilkins" (circled), Addison Township, 1860. The blue line marks the meandering Casselman River, which claimed her son Levi. Library of Congress



Fort Hill historical marker

By 1860, William was deceased. The federal census-taker recorded Louisa in 1860 as heading a household with eight children under her roof, ranging in age from seven to 21, with eldest sons John and William working as farmers and daughter Louisa earning income as a seamstress. A map of the region, made by Edward Walker in 1860, shows her farm marked as "Mrs. Wilkins."

Nothing more about Louisa is known.

Many years after Louisa Ann's death, in 1939 and 1940, Fort Hill's mesa was excavated by archaeologists and laborers of the Works Progress Administration (WPA). They found significant evidence that some 270 Indians had inhabited 35 dwellings there in a circular compound.

~ Son Levi Wilkins ~

Son Levi Wilkins (1835-1850s) was born in about 1835. When he was 15 years old, in 1850, he resided with his parents on the home farm.

Very little is known about his life, except for his horrific end sometime during the decade of the 1850s. In March 1896, in an article headlined "Remiscences," the Somerset Herald recounted the old story about the incident which occurred in the Casselman River:

The bed of the river is very rough, and mighty boulders, and saw-logs, and all kinds of debris, are caught in the twirling waters, grinding, groaning, splitting, tearing along, in one mighty congomerate mess, "in one red burial blent." Some dark secrets have been covered by this turbulent stream, some awful tragedies enacted, many homes made desolate, and widows and orphans made to mourn.... A good many years ago, a young man named Levi Wilkins living in Addison township, on the famous "Fort Hill" farm, went across the river one Saturday morning, to visit to his uncles, Wm. and Levi Ream, who lived on the farm on which Ursina is located. He had no trouble to cross the river in the morning, but, during the day, rhe water rose rapidly, caused by the spring freshets. He started home in the evening, intending to cross on horseback, at a fording a little ways below the tunnel. He did not come home, and his people thought he was going to stay over Sunday with his relatives; and his relatives supposed he had arrived safely at home. So that he was not really missed for several days, when a search was made. The horse was found a mile or so down the river, his bridle caught on a bush, and nearly dead from starvation. The body of his master was found further down, some days after. No human being can ever know the desperate fight young Wilkins made for his life, in the darkness and storm, and no one but the Supreme Judge knows under what circumstances he gave up his life that had been given him and that was so dear to his widowed mother, and his friends.


Rocky, dangerous Casselman River which claimed Levi Wilkins in the 1850s


~ Daughter Margaret Anne (Wilkins) Hinebaugh Stanton ~

Daughter Margaret Anne Wilkins (1835-1924) was born on July 31, 1835 in Listonburg. As a girl she was taught the skill of spinning fabrics which she used throughout her long life.

On May 19, 1854, at the age of 18, she was first married to 26-year-old Jonathan "Zenas" Hinebaugh (or "Heinbaugh") (Nov. 1827-1902) of Confluence. His name also has been spelled "Zenis."

Their five children were Felicia Josephine Dodd, Mary Amelia Woodmancy, Jonathan McClelland (or "Mellon") Hinebaugh, Marshall S. Heinbaugh and William Hinebaugh.


Bates House in Chariton, Iowa

The Hinbaughs first dwelled in Lower Turkeyfoot, Somerset County, and are listed there in the 1860 census, with 12-year-old Nathan Little living in the household. Sometime between 1867 and 1870, after the birth of their fifth child, the Hinebaughs migrated to Iowa, to a new farm home in Chariton, Appanoose County.

They are shown there on the 1870 and 1880 federal censuses. When the book The History of Appanoose County, Iowa was published in 1878, by the Western Historical Society in Chicago, Zenas was listed as ""Hinebaugh, Z." and was marked as a farmer in Section 11, with a post office of Iconium.

The Hinebaughs' marriage ended in divorce during the early-to-mid 1880s, with Zenas ultimately moving to Oklahoma, living with his married daughter Mary Woodmancy, and dying there in 1902. [Find-a-Grave]

Having moved back to Somerset County, Margaret wed a second time, on Feb. 11, 1886, to 51-year-old John Stanton (July 1834- ? ). Evidence suggests that he too had been married before, and brought two daughters to the marriage, Emma Glover Moore and Mrs. Grant Pyle.

The Stantons resided in Confluence, where Margaret was a longtime Methodist. When the federal census was taken in 1910, the 75-year-old Margaret was employed as a servant in a Confluence hotel owned by Harry "Lee" Sellers of the family of Frederick and Margaret (Faidley) Dull. John Hostetler, a barkeeper, also dwelled in the hotel. She was named in the gossip columns of the Meyersdale Republican on Dec. 19, 1912 after having "spent several days here [in Addison] last week with Mrs. Mary Wilkins."

Circa 1921, at the death of her sister Rosanna Lane in Iowa, Margaret was named as a surviving sister in the Iowa City Press-Citizen. At the age of 88, Margaret filed a legal claim against her son Marshall before justice of the peace W.S. Bower, alleging assault and battery and non-support while residing in his home in Coal Run, Elk Lick Township, Somerset County. The Republican reported on the case in detail, saying that she "testified that her son, while she was living at his home at Coal Run, assaulted her and threw her around and that she had marks for nearly a month afterwards on different parts of her body. Heinbaugh and two of his married daughters testified that he always treated his mother well and that the injuries [she] received were caused by her falling down the stairs. Owing to the infirmities of age, she would stumble and run against obstructions from which she had several marks." Squire Bower had the son post bonds and, after the matter was settled, she returned to her son's home in Coal Run. In concluding its story, the Republican reported that Margaret's "second husband was the late John Stanton who died here several years ago. She owned a fine home here on Hughart street, which her son now owns. The property is valued between $2,000 and $3000."

Having been stricken with a cerebral hemorrhage, she died at the age of 89 on Nov. 18, 1924, in her son's home in Coal Run. Burial was in Salisbury Odd Fellows Cemetery, the same place where her son Marshall rests, and Rev. W.J. Tanner officiated at the funeral. [Find-a-Grave] On her death certificate, her first name is listed as "Elizabeth" but in her Meyersdale Republican obituary it is given as "Margaret Ann." (One of the daughters married Edward Sellers.)

Daughter Felicia J. Hinebaugh (1854- ? ) was born in November 1854 in Somerset County. She was a young teenager when the family relocated west to Iowa. On Jan. 21, 1878, in a ceremony held in Appanoose County, IA, the 23-year-old Felicia married Iowan Charles M. Dodd (April 1856- ? ). They produced four offspring, among them Everett Dodd, Essa "Essie" Dodd, Howard Dodd and one other. When the federal census was enumerated in 1900, the family dwelled on a farm in High Point, Decatur County, IA. By 1920, they lived in Garden Grove, Decatur County, with Charles working as a farmer, Felicia as a hotel laundress and son Howard a hired farmhand working away from home. Daughter Essie married Ira Beavers, son of J.S. and Emma (Richardson) Beavers, on Jan. 2, 1904 in Leon, Decatur County.

Daughter Mary Amelia Hinebaugh (1857- ? ) was born in 1857 in Somerset County. She was age 10-12 when she and her family migrated to Iowa. There, at the age of 19, in about 1876, she married a fellow former Somerset Countian, 22-year-old Rozell Woodmancy (also spelled "Woodmansee") (March 1856- ? ). The Woodmancys initially resided in Iowa, where their children were born, among them Josephine Woodmancy, Augustus Woodmancy and Elsie Woodmancy, plus three others who died young. Sometime between 1885 and 1900, the family migrated south into Oklahoma, where they settled on a farm in Kildare, Kay County. In 1900, the federal census-taker recorded the family in Kildare, with Mary's 72-year-old divorced father living under their roof. By 1910, they were empty nesters, residing in Kiawa, Harper County, OK, and then during the decade of the 1910s moved again to Buffalo, Harper County, as shown in the 1920 census. Mary Amelia was deceased by 1924.

  • Granddaughter Josephine Woodmancy (1876- ? ) was born in October 1876 in Iowa. Unmarried at age 23, in 1900, she resided on her parents' home farm in Kildare, Kay County, OK.
  • Grandson Augustus Woodmancy (1881- ? ) was born in December 1881 in Iowa. At the age of 18, he lived with his parents on their farm in Kildare, Kay County, OK, and labored on the farm. Circa 1904, he is thought to have passed the examination of the Oklahoma Board of Pharmacy. He is believed to have married Ella Hagen in Oklahoma County, OK on June 21, 1910. By 1915, he sereved as secretary/treasurer of the Oklahoma Pharmaceutical Association.
  • Granddaughter Elsie Woodmancy (1885- ? ) was born in June 1885 in Iowa. She migrated into Oklahoma as a young girl with her family, and grew up on their farm in Kildare, Kay County.

Son Jonathan McClelland (or "Mellon") "John" Himebaugh (April 16, 1863-1957) was born on April 16, 1863 in Somerset County, with his name originally spelled "Hinebaugh." Born during the Civil War, he likely received his middle name in honor of the famed Union Army General George Brinton McClellan. As a boy, he made the journey to Iowa with his parents, and apparently remained there for good, even after his mother moved back to Pennsylvania. The 1880 census shows him at age 18 working as a farmer on his parents' farm in Chariton. On Oct. 14, 1886, at the age of 23, Jonathan married 17-year-old Jeannette "Nettie" Simpson Traupel (June 27, 1869-1950), a native of Morgan, Decatur County, IA. They were the parents of Floyd Virgil Hinebaugh, Charles Rufus Hinebaugh, Iva Josephine Hammil, Pearl Leon Hinebaugh, Verda Naomi Walsh Bailey and John Paul Hinebaugh. Nettie was injured in a freak accident in November 1910 while riding home in their buggy after a visit in Garden Grove.. Their horse "became frightened at Mr. Stearn's auto, throwing her out and bruising her up quite badly," said the Leon Journal-Reporter, "which required the service of a doctor. Her many friends hope for a speedy recovery." At that time, their last name was spelled "Himebaugh" in Print. John passed away on May 30, 1957 in Leon, Decatur County, IA. [Find-a-Grave]

Son Marshall Sullivan Heinbaugh (1865-1931) was born in 1865 in or around Somerset County. He migrated to Iowa with his parents and siblings in the late 1860s. The 1880 census shows him at age 15 working as a farm laborer on his parents' farm in Chariton. In about 1889, at the age of 24, he married Sarah "Sadie" Tipton (Nov. 8, 1870-1916), daughter of John and Elizabeth (Grine) Tipton of Somerset County. They made their home in Coal Run, Elk Lick Township, Somerset County. Of their 10 children, the known ones were Lloyd Hinebaugh, Elizabeth "Lizzie" Hinbaugh, Ira Hinebaugh, Roy Hinebaugh, Cora Hinebaugh, Clyde Hinebaugh and Trellis Hinebaugh. The federal census of 1910 shows that Marshall was a farmer, while son Lloyd owned his own butcher shop and son Ira was a farm laborer. As she aged into midlife, Sadie began to suffer from heart valve problems which led to an enlarged heart. She died from the effects of this illness at the age of 45 on Aug. 4, 1916. A year later, in August 1917, Marshall and William Tipton were hired by William P. Humes of Bellefonte, PA to open coal mine entrances on his large trace of land on Negro Mountain. Marshall kept a store in his final years. Stricken with stomach cancer, he succumbed at the age of 65 on March 12, 1931. Burial was in the Odd Fellows Cemetery in Salisbury, with Frank Hinebaugh of Boynton, PA signing the death certificate.

Son William Hinebaugh (1867- ? ) was born in 1867 in Somerset County. As a very young boy he migrated with his parents and family to Iowa. The 1880 census shows him at age 13 helping with farm work on his parents' farm in Chariton. Nothing more about him is known, other than when his mother died in 1924, the obituary in the Meyersdale Republican said he had "died in youth."


~ Son James Wilkins ~


Nancy Wilkins

Son James Wilkins (1837-1910) was born in about 1837.

At the age of 12, in 1850, he lived at home with his widowed mother and siblings. During the 1850s, James is believed to have headed west, and to have landed in Pleasant Valley, Johnson County, IA. There, in 1860, he boarded with the family of Charles and Dorcas Thompson and provided farm labor.

He appears to have returned home to Pennsylvania and, in 1861, was joined in wedlock with Nancy McMillen (Sept. 20, 1839-1939), daughter of Samuel McMillen.

The couple produced four children, the eldest of whom was born in Pennsylvania -- Florence "Flora" Davis, Emma Nicholson, William Wilkins and Frank Wilkins.

Within a year of marriage, in 1862, with the Civil War aflame and a baby in tow, the newlyweds pulled up stakes and made the long trip to Iowa in company with others of the McMillan and Wilkins clans. James purchased a farm north of West Liberty, Muscatine County and resided there for decades. By 1870, the census-taker recorded their home as in Springdale Township, Cedar County, IA, north of West Liberty, and the family getting their mail at Tipton.


Nancy Wilkins, circa 1935

Nancy was a longtime member of the Methodist Church, which she joined at the age of 12 and continued in her new home in Iowa. She also was a member of the Aid Society and the Women's Christian Temperance Union (WCTU). The couple retired in 1904 and relocated into the town of West Liberty. In September 1904, they hosted a visit from their niece, Mary McMillan, of Des Moines. In 1905, they spent a few months in California and then returned home, making their home on East Fourth Street.

At James' 71st birthday in 1908, a "delightful family reunion" was held in their home, reported the Quad-City Times of Davenport. "Two hundred fifty birthday cards and photographs were received by Mr. Wilkins. A bounteous 12 o'clock dinner was served and a very happy afternoon spent by all present." Attendees included son Will and family, son Frank and family and the families of Ed Sexsmith and Gus DeForest of Columbus Junction.

James died on St. Patrick's Day 1910 with burial in Oak Ridge Cemetery in West Liberty. [Find-a-Grave] Their daughters Emma of Clarksville, IA and Flora of Defiance, IA traveled to attend the funeral.

Nancy survived her husband by 19 years, spending her final time in the home of their son Will on East Fourth Street, West Liberty. In 1925, preparing to embark on a driving trip with her sister and nephew to Des Moines, she was described by the Iowa City Press Citizen as "always ready for short pleasure trips, and will be the first of the party ready to start when the whistle blows Saturday morning."

At her 96th birthday, in August 1935, she was pictured in the Muscatine Journal and News Tribune, seated on a chair and holding a cane. The 1935 story said that she "enjoys fairly good health, her hearing is unimpaired and her vision permits her to read and to make quilt blocks. The aged woman spends many hours each summer sitting by a widow and recalling for her visitors the days when West Liberty was prairie land, when horse back riding was the major means of travel and when Indians were frequent callers in the West Liberty area."

She died in her son's home at the age of 99 on Feb. 3, 1939. Her death was front-page news in the Quad-City Times and Press Citizen, which both included her photograph. An obituary in the Times noted that her survivors included four grandchildren, four great-grandchildren and a sister, Mary Kirby of West Liberty.


South side of Third Street in West Liberty, Iowa


Daughter Florence "Flora" Wilkins (1862-1945) was born in 1862 in Pennsylvania and came to Iowa as an infant. She taught school at some point in West Liberty. She married Robert Davis ( ? -1921). They were the parents of one daughter, Wilma A. Davis. For 67 years, she made her home in Defiance, Shelby County, IA. She was an original member of the Order of Eastern Star and the Evangelical Church. In March 1910, having received word of her father's death, she traveled back to West Liberty for the funeral. Robert passed away in Defiance in mid-September 1921. Word was telegraphed to Flora's brother in law Will Wilkins in West Liberty. Toward the end of her life, Flora moved in with her sister Emma in Des Moines, where five months later she passed into eternity, at the age of 83, in November 1945. Her death generated an obituary in the Des Moines Register.

Daughter Emma Wilkins ( ? - ? ) was born in Iowa in the mid-1860s. She was twice married. Her first spouse was Marion McBride (1864-1897), son of Thomas and Sarah McBride. They produced one known son, Forrest McBride. Sadly, Marion died at the age of 33 on Dec. 30, 1897. Burial was in Union Townshp Cemetery in Defiance, Shelby County. Emma apparently relocated to South Dakota to be with her son who had moved there. While in South Dakota, she met her second husband, Rev. John I. Nicholson (Nov. 3, 1863-1934), also spelled "Nicholsen," the son of William and Nancy (Tucker) Nicholson of Wayland, IA. John had not been married before and is not known to have fathered children. Their home in 1910 was in Clarksville, Butler County, IA and in 1933, they resided near or with her son Forrest in Eagle Butte, SD. By 1934, they were back in Iowa with a home in Des Moines. Sadly, John passed away in Des Moines on Jan. 20, 1934. Burial was in Pleasant Hill Cemetery in Washington, Washington County, IA. Emma's brother Will and family and Leland Wilkins and family traveled to attend the funeral, led by John's longtime friend and college roommate, Rev. Dr. S.P. Telford. He was survived by brothers James, Clayton, Thomas, Edward and George Nicholson and sisters Mrs. George Benson and Mrs. Frank Bradford. In 1945, living at 1102 Twenty-Fifth Street in Des Moines, she brought her dying sister into her home until the sister's end came five months later. Emma died in 1950, with burial beside her first husband in Union Townshp Cemetery. [Find-a-Grave] Son Forrest ( ? -1964) married Ina Merle Sinkey (1893-1976) in 1918 -- resided in Eagle Butte, SD -- and had four children -- Leo McBride, Helen Joyce Pacheco, Mildred Eppf and Lois Moffatt.

Son William "Will" Wilkins (1869- ? ) was born in about 1869 in Iowa. As an adult, he resided in West Liberty. At the age of 25, on Feb. 8, 1894, Will was joined in marriage with 26-year-old Ella R. (1868-1938) of Springdale, IA. They were the parents of Leland Wilkins. The Wilkinses resided on a farm near Davenport. They are known to have traveled to attend the Iowa State Fair in August 1901, with the news reported in the gossip columns of the Davenport Daily Times. Will and Ella relocated to West Liberty, Muscatine County in 1919, and were members of the First Methodist Episcopal Church. In June 1929, Ella fell down a flight of stairs at home, having "missed the door" while getting up to get a comforter, said the Daily Times, and fractured her shoulder and arm. The federal census for 1930 shows Will, Ella and Will's aged mother residing together in Wapsinonoc Township. Then in January 1932, suffering from diabetes, she received treatment in a hospital in Iowa City. Tragically, on July 25, 1938, she suffered a stroke and collapsed at home. Her 98-year-old mother-in-law found her on the floor and called for help. Ella was rushed to a local hospital where she died later that day. An obituary in the Davenport Daily Times noted that her survivors included sisters Anna Hollingsworth and Martha Armstrong, brother Charles Armstrong, and half-brothers D.L. Armstrong, Will Armstrong, Russell Armstrong and Allison Armstrong. Rev. Walter A. Smith preached the funeral sermon in the family church, followed by interment in Oak Ridge Cemetery. At the funeral, singers Mrs. R.P. Evans and Mrs. Lyle Holmes sung One Sweetly Solemn Thought and Good Night and Good Morning, accompanied by organist Mrs. Smith. Pallbearers included W.W. Anderson, George Schafer, James Nay, C.E. Dice, Charles McCann and Willard Maxson. The Muscatine Journal and News-Tribune noted those who had traveled a distance to attend the funeral -- Mr. and Mrs. Charles Hollingsworth from Albert Lea, MN; Emma Nicholson from Des Moines; the Dorsey Armstrongs from Bellview, WI; the LeRoy Hollingsworths from DeWitt, IA; the Lewis Ellysons, Clyde Hamptons, Lura Eden, Mrs. Sam Iren and P.J. Thomas from West Branch, in addition to family and friends from West Branch and Springdale.

Son Frank Wilkins ( ? -1914) was born in (?). He was married and had one known child. The Wilkinses owned 120 acres north of West Liberty which were "especially well improved," reported the Des Moines Register. In September 1914, suffering from rheumatism and heart problems, he died at home. A death notice was printed in the Register.


~ Son John Wilkins ~

Son John Wilkins (1840-1916) was born in about 1839. John was a veteran of the Civil War. His first wife, Sarah Sabina (Weimer) Wilkins, who had died in 1883, was "a daughter of the late David Weimer of Rockwood," said the Somerset County Leader. He thus brought four adult children to his marriage with Rachel -- Elva Walter of Rockwood, Etta Lane of Pittsburgh, Walter Wilkins of Washington State and Anna Weisel of Scottdale. His second wife was twice-widowed Rachel (Phillippi) Gerhard Younkin of Casselman, Somerset County. See Rachel's biography for more, including John's tragic end.

~ Daughter Louisa (Wilkins) Mowry ~

Daughter Louisa "Louiza" Wilkins (1841-1921) was born in about 1841. She learned the skill of a seamstress as a girl.

At the age of about 20, on Nov. 3, 1861, she was joined in holy wedlock with John E. Mowry (1838-1917). 

They resided in Pennsylvania where their five eldest children were born. Sometime between 1870 and 1873, they relocated to a farm near Jasper, Clear Creek Township, Jasper County, IA, and John operated a mercantile business in nearby Baxter, Jasper County.

Their 10 children were Florence Kline, Alice Cross, Jesse Mowry, Julia Dodd, William Mowry, Ella Buchanan, Milton Mowry, Anna Webb, Ervin Mowry and Ross Rutledge Mowry.

Sadly, their son Ervin died young. Louise and John are named in a profile of their son Ross in James Baird Weaver's 1912 book Past and Present of Jasper County, Iowa, Vol. 1, which said "The Mowry family is of German stock, and the first specific record we have of them in America is when they settled in Pennsylvania in the early days." In 1921, when her sister Rosanna Lane died in West Liberty, Muscatine County, IA, Louisa was named in the Iowa City Press-Citizen as a surviving sister.

Louisa died in 1921.

Daughter Florence Mowry (1862- ? ) was born in about 1862 in Pennsylvania. She married Henry Kline and lived in Baxter, Jasper County, IA

Daughter Alice Mowry (1864- ? ) was born in about 1864 in Pennsylvania. She was wedded to David Cross and made their home near Colfax, IA.

Son Jesse Mowry (1866- ? ) was born in about 1866 in Pennsylvania. In 1912, he resided in Nevada, MO.

Daughter Julia Mowry (1868- ? ) was born in about 1868 in Pennsylvania. She was joined in marriage with Fred Dodd and made their residence in Baxter, Jasper County.

Son William Mowry (1870- ? ) was born in about 1870 in Pennsylvania. He lived in Marshalltown, IA in 1912.

Daughter Ella Mowry (1873- ? ) was born in about 1873 in Jasper, IA. She was united in holy wedlock with J.M. Buchanan. In 1912, their home was near Colfax, IA.

Son Milton Mowry (1874- ? ) was born in about 1874 in Jasper, IA. In April 1896, living in Baxter, IA, he made a homestead application. Later, in 1912, he made his home in Kansas City, MO.

Daughter Anna (or "Fannie") Mowry was born in about 1877 in Jasper, IA. She married Carl C. Webb ( ? -1935) and lived in Baxter. Tragically, while driving near Laurens, IA on Jan. 24, 1935, Carl was involved in a vehicular accident and died. Anna filed claims of manslaughter against two other men involved with the crash, as reported in the Humboldt (IA) Independent.


Sen. Ross R. Mowry

Son Ross Rutledge Mowry (1882-1957) was born in Baxter, Clear Creek Township, Jasper County, IA on March 5, 1882. . On Sept. 17, 1908, he married Mary Edith Mathews (1878- ? ), daughter of John L. Matthews of Newton. She was said to be "a young lady of education and many pleasing traits of character which have long rendered her a favorite with a wide circle of friends." The couple dwelled in Newton, Polk County, IA and produced two daughters, Esther Virginia Mowry and Gertrude Ellen Spaulding. After obtaining his law degree from the University of Iowa in 1903, Ross became a lawyer. He was a member of the law firm of Mowry and Cross in Newton from 1904 to 1910. Then, he became a prosecuting United States District Attorney for Southern Iowa from 1911 to 1915. He is profiled in James Baird Weaver's 1912 book Past and Present of Jasper County, Iowa, Vol. 1. In 1916, he served as assistant Attorney General of Iowa. He served for a time as Iowa consul to the Modern Woodmen of America. From 1939 to 1946, he was elected to two terms in the Senate of the Iowa General Assembly. At the age of 44, on April 12, 1926, he submitted an application for membership to the Sons of the American Revolution (SAR). "At the time of his death," said the Journal of the Senate of the Fifty-Eighth General Assembly, he "was considered to be probably the greatest historian living in Jasper County." Ross died on Sept. 28, 1957. Afterward, his colleagues Eugene M. Hill, Carroll Price and X.T. Prentis petitioned the Iowa General Assembly, which passed a unanimous resolution that the "state of Iowa has lost a valuable and honorable citizen and by this resolution tenders its sincere sympathy to the surviving members of the family" Their daughter Esther Virginia Mowry (1909- ? ) also became a lawyer and served as assistant attorney general of Iowa in 1916; as a U.S. District Attorney from 1924 to 1932; and as a member of the Iowa State Senate from 1939 to 1947. Circa 1957, she lived in New York City. She provided an oral history interview for the publication Historical Materials in the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library (1983) and today the material is housed at the Library in West Branch, Iowa. Her sister Gertrude (1913-2000) married William Spaulding ( ? - ? ) and resided in Wakefield, MA. She was a longtime member of the Alpha Xi Delta Alumnae Association of Greater Boston and a scholarship for study in government or environmental affairs was named in her and her sister's honor -- the "Spaulding Mowry Scholarship." She also was a "civil leader and advocate for open space and conservation," said the Images of America book Lake Quannapowitt. "She led a 20-year effort to establish the town Conservation Commission, finally succeeding in 1983." She was a founder of the Friends of Lake Quannapowitt which, upon her death in 2000, named her "Lady of the Lake."


~ Daughter William W. Wilkins ~

Son William W. Wilkins (1844- ? ) was born in about 1844. Nothing more is known.


Railroad bridge spanning the Wapsie River near West Liberty, Iowa



~ Daughter Rosanna (Wilkins) Lane ~

Daughter Rosanna Wilkins (1845 -1921) was born on Feb. 11, 1845. At the age of 17, in 1862, she migrated west to Iowa, and settled near West Liberty, Muscatine County, where she stayed for the remainder of her long life.

She was joined in matrimony with William S. Lane ( ? -1896). He had been married before and brought three children to the second union -- H.C. Lane, F.H. Lane and Edwin Lane.

The couple produced three more daughters -- Blanche Boldt, Maude Lane and Nettie Knapp.

Sadly, William died in 1896. Rosanna survived her husband by nearly a quarter of a century.

She passed away at West Liberty in January 1921 at the age of 75. Burial was in Oak Ridge Cemetery, and an obituary published in the Iowa City Press-Citizen, which noted that "She would have been 76 next month on the eleventh." Among those who traveled to attend Rosanna's funeral were her stepson H.G. Lane and family, Wilfred Bozarth of Cedar Falls, the Archive Hunter family of Creston, IA, and her brother Alfred Wilkins.

Stepson H.C. Lane lived in Iowa City in 1921. He was married and had a daughter, Ruth Lane.

Stepson F.H. Lane resided in 1921 in Pomona, CA.

Stepson Edwin Lane was in West Liberty in 1921.

Daughter Blanche Lane wedded (?) Boldt ( ? - ? ). In 1921, she made her home in West Liberty.

Daughter Maude Lane was unmarried circa 1921 and lived in West Liberty.

Daughter Nettie Lane married (?) Knapp and, circa 1921, dwelled in Santa Barbara, CA.


~ Son Alfred Norlan "Alf" Wilkins ~

Son Alfred Norlan "Alf" Wilkins (1847-1922) was born in about 1847.

As with his sisters Louisa and Rosanna Lane, he migrated to Iowa, and made his home in Guthrie Center, Guthrie County.

Alfred is believed to have married Martha (?) and to have had at least one daughter, Maude R. Ratchel. Sadly, daughter Maude died at the age of 25, in Guthrie Center, on Jan. 15, 1907. In 1921, he was named in the Iowa City Press-Citizen obituary of his sister Rosanna Lane, and is known to have traveled to West Liberty to attend her funeral.

He died in Valley, near Guthrie Center, on May 14, 1922, at the age of 75.

Daughter Maude M. Wilkins (1882-1907) was born in about 1882. She married (?) Ratchel. On Jan. 15, 1907, in Guthrie Center, she died at the age of 25.


~ Daughter Levida ("Louvenia"?) Wilkins ~

Daughter Levida (or "Louvenia") Wilkins (1849- ? ) was born in about 1849.


~ Daughter Julia Ann (Wilkins) DeLauter ~

Daughter Julia Ann Wilkins (1850-1906) was born on May 23. 1850 in Fort Hill, Addison Township, Somerset County.

She was wedded to Charles Lewis DeLauter (May 20, 1847-1912), son of Henry and Amelia (Bowman) DeLauter. They resided in Meyersdale, Somerset County and had one son, Leroy W. DeLauter.

A native of Funkstown, MD, Charles had come to Listonburg at the age of 14 to apprentice as a fuller and weaver at the Liston wool mill. He spent 28 years in that work, "as a boy and man,... becoming a thorough master of his trade," said the Meyersdale Republican. He relocated to Meyersdale in 1893 to establish his own weaving business. There, they built a three story house, with their living quarters in the upper two, and his loom and store on the ground floor. Later in life, Charles established an insurance and collection agency. Charles was a "zealous" member of the Methodist Episcopal Church, as a board member and men's Bible class participant. He joined the Odd Fellows and Royal Arcanum, a fraternal benefit society.

Stricken with organic heart disease and chronic kidney problems at the age of 55, Julia died on Feb. 28, 1906. Interment was in Union Cemetery in Meyersdale, and a one-paragraph notice was printed in the Republican.

Charles spent one or two years as a widower and then wed a second time, to Virginia (Eicher) Morrow of Harnedsville, Somerset County. In October 1912, Charles attended an oyster dinner at their church, followed by an Odd Fellows lodge meeting, but complained of not feeling well. When he returned home at midnight, he began to suffer further from "acute indigestion and congestion of the lungs." He died in their Clay Street home just a few days later on Oct. 21, 1912, after what the Republican called "a few days' severe illness." Rev. George A. Neeld offiicated at the funeral in the DeLauter home, with his Odd Fellows lodge members attending in "full regalia" and leading their own graveside services at Union Cemetery. A prominent red barre granite marker stands today at their grave.

Son Leroy W. DeLauter resided in Westernport, MD in 1912. In October 1912, his son was born, and he attended his father's funeral in Meyersdale.


~ Daughter Cornelia Wilkins ~

Daughter Cornelia Wilkins (1853- ? ) was born in about 1853 in Addison.


Copyright 2002, 2009, 2012, 2014-2017 Mark A. Miner