Some Local Indiana Obituaries, 1834-1850

Below are a few more local obituary abstracts from the book Abstracts of Obituaries in the Western Christian Advocate, 1834-1850. These obituary abstracts are from nearby localities across the state line in Indiana. The book was compiled by Margaret R. Waters, Dorothy Riker, and Doris Leistner, copyright 1988, Indiana Historical Society. The end of this post contains more information about this 138-page book.

Adams County, Indiana:

BRYAN, Mrs. Maria, died 30 August 1850 in Adams County, Indiana, at the age of 30 years. She was married to William P. Bryan and they had children. “Mr. Bryan’s second wife formerly lived in Ohio.” [I am not exactly sure how they meant that. Was Maria his second wife??] 16 Oct 1850 issue of WCA

DILL, Benjamin, born 16 December 1809 in Camden, Kent County, Delaware, died 24 January 1840 in Adams County, Indiana. He came to Indiana with his parents when he was young and he was married. 3 Apr 1840 issue of WCA

DORWIN, Phebe, died 15 September 1844 in Adams County, Indiana, at the age of 81 years. She was married and had children, some of them probably dead. She was a Baptist before coming to Indiana. 22 Nov 1844 issue of WCA

EMERY, George, born in Frederick County, Virginia, died 3 July 1841 at the home of his son-in-law William Shepherd in Adams County, Indiana. He was 88 years old. He served in the Revolutionary War, went to Ohio, and then to Adams County, Indiana. He had children. 6 Aug 1841 issue of WCA

RICE, Samson, born 9 February 1787 in Loudon County, Virginia, died at his residence in Adams County, Indiana, on 21 January 1848, at the age of 59. He moved with his family to Carroll County, Ohio, in 1827, and to Adams County, Indiana, in 1837. He was married and had 9 children, all of whom were still living. 17 Mar 1848 issue of WCA

RUGG, Susannah, born 13 March 1816 in Harrison County, Ohio, died at her home in Decatur, Indiana, on 19 February 1848, at the age of 32. She was the daughter of Vachel and Sarah Bell. She moved to Adams County, Indiana, with her parents in 1831 and married Samuel L. Rugg, Esq, on 13 July 1834. Her husband and 4 children survived her. 17 Mar 1848 issue of WCA

TINKHAM, Isaac, died 2 September 1844, at the age of 60, in Adams County, Indiana. 22 Nov 1844 issue of WCA

TURNER, John, died November 1847 in Adams County, Indiana, at the age of nearly 60 years. He was a member of the M.E. Church. 12 Apr 1848 issue of WCA

WINANS, Miss Christina, died 5 May 1850 in Adams County, Indiana, at the age of 21. 29 May 1850 issue of WCA

Decatur, Indiana:

HOOPER, Cornelia, born in Cecil County, Maryland, died 19 April 1843, at the age of 49. She moved at a young age with her parents to Brook County, Virginia, and on to Fairfield County, Ohio, in 1815. She married Ezekiel Hooper in 1818 in Fairfield County, Ohio, and they had 7 children. Signed Decatur, Indiana. 23 June 1843 issue of WCA [I am not sure if this was from the city of Decatur or the county of Decatur.]

PILLARS, Susannah, born 23 November 1818, the daughter of John and Phebe Edwards, died 2 February 1844 in Decatur, Adams County, Indiana. She married James Pillars on 23 May 1839. 22 Mar 1844 issue of WCA

Jay County, Indiana:

HARFORD, John, born in Northumberland County, Virginia, died 4 August 1843 in Jay County, Indiana. He was a Revolutionary War soldier who, although very young, took the place of his father who was due to go to war. He moved with his parents to Culpepper County, Virginia, where he married Rachel Compton in 1790. He moved to Harrison County, Virginia, in 1815, to Warren County, Ohio, in 1825, and to Jay County, Indiana, in 1837. He had 11 children, 50 great-grandchildren, and 12 great-great-grandchildren.15 Mar 1844 issue of WCA

OCERMAN, Emeline, born in Virginia, died 18 December 1843, at the age of 24 years, 4 months, and 16 days. She was the daughter of Simeon and Mary Bell. She married Rev. Joseph Ocerman. She joined the M.E. Church on Bluffton Mission, Jay County, Indiana, about 6 years ago. She is buried near Boston, Indiana. Her mother is buried in Lewis County, Virginia, and her father is buried near Cincinnati, Ohio. Signed Richmond, Wayne County, Indiana. 23 Feb 1844 issue of WCA

WHEAT, Mrs. Hannah, born 6 February 1790 in Northumberland County, Pennsylvania, died 1 February 1848 in Jay County, Indiana. She was the daughter of Benjamin and Mary Patterson. They moved to Steuben County, New York, where she married Thomas Wheat on 13 September 1810. They moved to Jay County in 1836 and they had 13 children, 9 of whom survived her.

While looking through the book I found the following reference to one of Joe’s ancestors, Revolutionary War patriot Hugh Montgomery, and I was able to add some information to that family line.

MARTIN, James, born in Pennsylvania in 1790, died in Linn County, Iowa, on 31 August, 1846, at the age of 56. He was the son of Alexander and Mary Martin. He moved to Butler County, Ohio, with his parents in 1897. He moved to Illinois in 1836 and lived there a short time before moving to Linn County, Iowa. He was married to Sarah Montgomery, daughter of Hugh Montgomery, and they had 10 children. 19 Feb 1847 issue of WCA

What good information!

About the book Abstracts of Obituaries in the Western Christian Advocate, 1834-1850:

The Western Christian Advocate was a weekly publication of the Methodist Church, printed in Cincinnati, Ohio. It was an outgrowth of the Christian Advocate and Journal, a newspaper started in New York City in 1826, which by 1831 had the largest circulation of any weekly paper in the nation, religious or secular.

As Methodism spread westward there was a need for an additional newspaper to provide for those in the Midwest. The Western Christian Advocate was established in 1834 for this purpose and consisted of four standard-size newspaper pages. News consisted of obituaries, some marriages, general news items, medical information, temperance and missionary news, Methodist meeting reports, sermons, and denominational concerns. Obituaries were not limited to Methodists and most of the deaths reported were from Kentucky, Ohio, Indiana, and other Midwestern states. The paper had a circulation of 14,000 in 1840 and 18,000 by 1850. It was published until 1929.


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