Tag Archives: John C Williams

John Christopher Williams (1848-1926) & Ellen Watson Conner, Hopkins County, TX

John Christopher Williams, born 25 August 1848 in Lafayette County, Arkansas, my husband 2X great grandfather, was the ninth of thirteen children for to William Alexander Williams and Hepsabeth Davidson of Marion County, Tennessee and Lafayette County, Arkansas.

John Christopher Williams
My Personal Collection

I’ve written about John and his first wife, Louisa Miller, and family, which is Dave’s direct line of descent.

However, I have never written about his second family, which is much bigger. Louisa Miller Williams, mother of John’s first four children, died at the young age of 41 on 22 June 1883 in Hopkins County, Texas.

John Williams, Later in Life

John married (2) Ellen Watson Conner on 15 June 1883, also in Hopkins County, Texas. John Williams knew the Connor family well, as Louisa’s oldest sister, Mary Catherine, married Henry Connor.

John Conner, one of Henry’s and Mary’s children lived with John and his family in 1880. When Louisa died, possibly giving birth to a fifth child who didn’t survive either, John had three young children who needed a mother, hence his somewhat quick second marriage just five months after Louisa died.

Ellen Watson Conner was born on 30 March 1863 in Louisiana, the daughter of William D. and Frances Caroline Conner.

Ellen’s father was a farmer, as was John Williams, so Ellen settled into her new life with John.

John and Ellen had an extended family of children and grandchildren.

Standing: Pearl Brasher, Minnie Williams Horne, Alvin Payne, Alice Williams Payne, Lois Payne, Earl Wilder, Zora Williams Wilder, George Williams; Seated are John C. Williams holding Alton Horne, Ellen Conner Williams holding Thelma Wilder; Standing between John and Ellen is Donis Williams

Children, all events in Hopkins County, unless noted:

  1. Alice Fannie, born October 1884; died 28 November 1939; married Henry Alvin Payne, 23 April 1902, Hopkins County, Texas. Henry was born 3 October 1881; died 21 May 1981. Henry married (2) Callie Cork, 1 March 1947. She was born 10 September 1903; died 20 September 1997.
  2. Leonia, died 22 January 1891.
  3. Willie Louis, died 10 January 1891
  4. Daisy, died 8 January 1892
  5. Izora, born 5 January 1893; died 20 September 1947; married Earl Wilder, 30 April 1911. Earl was born in 1886; died 1955.
  6. Johnie, born 18 March 1895; died 20 October 1905.
  7. Lloyd Leon, born March 1897; died 29 October 1962, Crystal City, Zavala, Texas.
  8. George, born 9 April 1899; died 11 November 1975, Texas; married Myrtus Ann Sanders, 18 April 1920. She was born 1900; died 1990.
  9. Aubrey Stell, born 25 May 1901; died 24 August 1906.
  10. Ishmael A. Donis, born 20 March 1906; died 23 August 1933; married Velma Matthews, 2 October 1926. Velma was born c1909, but no further information has been found about her, although she survived her husband. It appears they had no children. Don, as he was known, worked in the gin industry and died in a boiler explosion.

Of the ten children of John and Ellen (Conner) Williams, three – Alice, George and Izora – married and had children.

Here is the next generation:

Alice Fannie married Henry Alvin Payne. They had one daughter:

  1. Lois Murin, born 11 March 1903; died 7 October 1951, Titus County, Texas; married (1) John Holland Whitten, c1920. He was born 7 May 1897, Texas; died 18 January 1930, Franklin County, Texas. They had one son, Hollie Dale, born 16 January 1921; died 19 January 1924.  (2) Jesse Ulman Wright, c1940. He was born 31 December 1895, Titus County, Texas; died 31 July 1950, Titus County, Texas. Lois had no known surviving children.

George married Myrtus Ann Sanders. They had two sons:

  1. Jack Norval, born 15 August 1921; died 21 January 1988, Dallas, Texas; married Corinah Alene Sharp, 1944. She was born 2 September 1920; died 20 December 2005, Dallas County, Texas. They had two daughters.
  2. Son, born 1935 who could still be living

Izora married Earl Wilder. They had three children, who all have descendants:

  1. Thelma Jewell, born 29 January 1912; died 22 June 1991; married (1) James Garry Blann (1909-1963) (2) Finis Marvin Payne (1908-1990). Thelma and Garry had three children, two sons and a daughter.
  2. Fay Nell, born 10 February 1916; died 12 February 2000, Denton County, Texas; married John Edward Moore (1915-1978). It is unknown whether they had children. There were none at home in 1940.
  3. Royal Earl, born 10 August 1917; died 9 May 1975, Gregg County, Texas; married Fleda Gay Cowser (1920-1979), c1940. It is unknown whether they had children, but because of online info, it appears they did.

Years ago, I corresponded with Alene, but we didn’t keep in touch and she passed away in 2005. I’d love to locate some of these Williams cousins today.


Photographic Family History – Williams of Hopkins County, TX

John Christopher Williams was one of my early brick walls. When I found him in the Texas census, I learned that he was born in Arkansas around 1847-1848 to an unknown Williams set of parents. After reading almost every Williams entry in the 1850 Arkansas census (this was way before the internet and there were a LOT of Williams families there by 1850), I discovered that he was the son of William A. and Judith Williams. That led to other difficulties as they had come from Marion Co., Tennessee, which lost its records in 1922. Eventually, I untangled many branches of the Williams family and even self published a book about the Williams family of Cumberland County, Virginia.

I’ve been lucky in terms of having photos of this family as I not only found some cousins along the way, but my father-in-law inherited photos of his grandmother Minnie Mae’s family. Minnie Mae was the daughter of John C. Williams and his first wife, Louisa Miller.

I love this photograph and it is the only one I have of Louisa. Louisa was the daughter of Michael Miller and Elizabeth Hendricks of Muhlenberg County, Kentucky. She married John on 13 September 1871 in Nevada County, Arkansas. The Millers had already moved to Hopkins County and I am not sure why Louisa was in Nevada County. Actually, I am not sure why John was there either since his family lived in Lafayette and Hempstead Counties, near the county line.

Louisa died on 22 June 1883 in Hopkins County and is buried in Connor Cemetery there. John married (2) Ellen Watson Connor in late 1883 or early 1884.

John and Louisa had four children:

1. James Benjamin, born about 1873 in Arkansas; died 1 April 1936 in Hopkins County, Texas
2. Louella J., born abut 1875, also in Arkansas; died after 1880.
3. Levi, born about 1877; died 8 September 1879, Hopkins County, Texas
4. Minnie Mae, born 23 March 1879, Hopkins County, Texas; died 22 June 1945, Hillsboro, Hill, Texas
5. Unidentified child, born about 1881