Tombstone Tuesday–William W. & Emily E. (Bryan) Reid

William W. Reid & Emily E. nee Bryan, Green Park Cemetery, Jay County, Indiana

This is the tombstone of William W. and Emily E. (Bryan) Reid, located in Green Park Cemetery, Portland, Jay County, Indiana. William and Emily were my second great grandparents. The marker is inscribed:

William W. Reid
Emily E. His Wife

William (2 February 1855-2 February 1905) was the son of Daniel and Elvira Reid, nee Headington. Emily E. Bryan (8 May 1856-24 June 1940) was the daughter of John and Hannah Bryan, nee Huey. William married Emily E. Bryan on 30 June 1878 in Jay County, Indiana. (Vol. D:442)   Emily remarried to Abraham C. Bisel on 20 December 1913 in Jay County. (Vol. 9:99) William and Emily had seven daughters: Pearl, Laura, Minnie, Zorpha, Edith, Hannah, and Gladys. I descend from Pearl.

WILLIAM REID DEAD–Wm. Reid died at half past six o’clock Thursday evening at his late home in Portland, from a lingering illness of creeping paralysis. The deceased leaves a wife and six children. For many years Mr. Reid and his family were residents of near New Corydon, and moved to their home on Water Street, about a year ago.  He was born February 2, 1855, and at the time of his death was fifty years of age. Eight brothers and sisters survive, whose names are C.T. Reid, of South Bend, Albert, Roland and A.J. Reid of this city, Harry Reid and Mrs. Minnie Borden of Hartford City, James Reid, of Kansas, and Lowell Reid, of Muncie.  The funeral service took place Saturday afternoon at two o’clock at the Evangelical church, conducted by the Rev. W.S. Tracq. Interment in Green Park Cemetery. (source: The Geneva Herald, 16 Feb 1905)

EMILY E. BISEL DIES MONDAY-Flu and Complications Fatal to West Water Street Resident-Emily E. Bisel, 84, resident of West Water Street, died Monday morning at 5 o’clock at the Jay County Hospital following an eleven week’s illness of flu and complications. She had been a lifelong resident of Jay County. Mrs. Bisel was born May 8, 1856, in Jay County, daughter of John and Hannah (Huey) Bryan. Her first marriage was June 29, 1878 (sic), to William W. Reid, who died February 9, 1903 (sic). She was later married Abram C. Bisel, now deceased.  Surviving are five daughters, Mrs. Pearl Brewster of New Corydon, Mrs. Minnie Brockway of Portland, Mrs. Zorpha Lawrence of Fort Wayne, Mrs. Edith VanSkyock and Mrs. Gladys Lare of Portland; 30 grandchildren; 42 great grandchildren and one sister, Mrs. Ernest Schmidt of northeast of Portland. Two daughters are deceased. The body was removed to the Baird funeral home where friends may call.  Funeral arrangements have not been completed. (source: clipping from unknown newspaper, dated June 1940, obtained from Hazel Brewster in 1999)

As so often happens, there are a couple discrepancies among the records. William and Emily’s marriage return shows they were married on 30 June, not 29 June, as stated in Emily’s obituary. The year of William’s death is incorrect in Emily’s obituary. He died in 1905, not 1903. William’s death record from the Jay County Health Department and Emily’s obituary both state that William died on 9 February, but the JL Baird Funeral Home Records show that he was buried on 4 February. I checked a 1905 calendar and both February 2nd and 9th were on a Thursday, which agrees with William’s obituary. His obituary states only that he died on Thursday. Is the funeral home record wrong or is the Health Department record wrong?  We have to remember that there can be errors in any record. Therefore we have to carefully study all of the information, take into consideration the events that were occurring at that time, and consider who may have provided the information in order to determine what is most likely correct.

William W. Reid (1855-1905), photo c1898

Emily E. Reid, nee Bryan (1856-1940)


    • Mike Huey on November 24, 2012 at 1:33 pm
    • Reply

    Are you related to Bennett’s of Portland Indiana? Ella Bennett, William J Bennett. I have a family bible dated 1896 I am trying to get back to the owners.
    Thank you in advance
    Michael Huey

    1. Thank you for contacting me but I do not believe that is our Bennett family. I hope you someday find the correct family and reunite them with the Bible.

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