An American Family History

Sarah Ricketts Winings


Ricketts is also spelled Rickeots, Rickeotts, Rickett, Rickets, Ricket, Rickel, Rickle, Rickels, and Rickles.

Indiana became a state in 1819. The north was settled by people from New England and New York, the center by people from the Mid-Atlantic states and Ohio, and the south by people from Southern states, particularly Kentucky and Tennessee.

Sarah Ricketts Winings was born on December 24, 1807 in Dearborn County, Indiana. She was the daughter of Robert Ricketts and Susannah Wilson.

Sarah married Abraham Winings when she was 17 on August 5, 1824 in Dearborn County, Indiana. He was the son of John Wining and Elizabeth Grider. He was born June 26, 1804 in Pennsylvania. His brother Daniel Winings married Sarah's sister Rebecca Ricketts.

Sarah and Abraham's children included:
William Squire Winings
(1825, married Nancy Jane Chamerlin),
John Ricketts Winings (1831),
Martha Jane Winings Hughes (1833, married John Marion Hughes) and
Susan Elizabeth Winings (1841, died age 21).

In 1850 they were living in Ohio County, Indiana. The household consisted of Abraham age 46, Sarah age 42, Martha age 17 and Susan age 9.

At the time of the 1860 census they were living in Macon County, Illinois. The household consisted of Abram age 56, Sarah age 53, and Susan age 19


William and Sarah died in Macon County, Illinois. Sarah died in 1862 when she was 54 and William died in 1870.

Children of Robert Ricketts
and Susannah Wilson
  • John Ricketts
  • Phoebe Ricketts Sheridan
  • Hannah Ricketts Buchanan
  • William Ricketts
  • Susannah Ricketts Moulton
  • Robert Ricketts
  • Isaac Ricketts
  • Edward M. Ricketts
  • Elizabeth Ricketts Larew Blankenship
  • Rebecca Ricketts Winings
  • Margaret Ricketts Kelso
  • Sarah Ricketts Winings
  • Vienna Louise Ricketts Moulton
  • Illinois became a state in 1818. A large influx of American settlers came in the 1810s by the Ohio River.

    Women played an essential role in American society as mothers and homemakers.


    The first European settlements in Maryland were made in 1634 when English settlers created a permanent colony.

    The American Revolutionary War (1775–1783) was between the Kingdom of Great Britain and the 13 colonies which became the newly formed United States.

    from Atlas of Moultrie County and  the State of Illinois, 1875 ,p.234-5, Source and comments provided by John Winings.

    William Winings
    The subject of the following sketch is one of the oldest settlers and prominent men of Moultrie county. The ancestry of the family is German on the paternal side, and Welsh on the maternal. There were three brothers who left Germany and came to America prior to the Revolutionary war. From them the Winings have sprung.

    The name in the course of time became slightly changed. Ross Winans, of Baltimore, the millionaire inventor of the steamship, and builder of the great Russian railroads, was a direct decendant from one of these three German emigrants.

    John, the grandfather of William Winings, was the youngest of these three brothers, and was but six years of age when he came to America [around 1733]. He grew to manhood here, took part in the Revolutionary war, and hauled supplies and provisions for the patriot forces. He was a man of large frame, possessed of great strength and powers of endurance, and lived to the great age of one hundred and one years. He drifted into Western Pennsylvania, and there made his home until 1818, when he removed to Dearborn county, Indiana, and remained there until his death.

    He married Elizabeth Ryder [Grider], who was of German parentage, and a native of Maryland. She died in Indiana, at the great age of one hundred and three years. Her father and two sons [Elizabeth's brothers?] were soldiers of the Revolution, and the latter lost their lives in defense of their country.

    By this union was [born] Abraham, the father of the subject of this biography. He was born in Pennsylvania in 1804, and was in his fourteenth year when his father moved to Indiana. He followed farming in the summer, and in the winter the flat boating and coasting trade down the Ohio river. In 1852, he came to Illinois, and the first year stopped in Sangamon county, then removed to Macon county, where he died in 1870.

    He married Sarah Ricketts. She died in Macon county, in 1862, in her fifty-fourth year. She was descended from a Welsh family. Her father, Robert Ricketts, was also a soldier of the Revolution, first a substitute, and afterwards enlisted and served until the close of the struggle.

    By this latter marriage there were four children, two sons and two daughters. William is the eldest of the children. He was born in Ohio county, Indiana, July 24, 1825. He received but a limited education in the schools of his native state. This has, however, been much improved in later years by self-culture, and he is now well posted upon current events and transacts all kinds of business in a businesslike manner.

    He remained in Indiana at work upon the farm and in farming until the fall of 1852, when he moved to Macon county, Illinois, and remained there until 1857, when he purchased a quarter section of land in Section 11, T. 15, R. 4 E. [now Dora Township, Moultrie County], upon a part of which the town of Lake City is now built. It was raw, unimproved land, and all the improvements have been made by him. He may be regarded as the first settler of the town, as the first house erected was upon his land.

    On the 25th of December, 1846, he married Miss Nancy Jane Chamberlin, a native of Ohio county, Indiana. Her father was a Virginian. Her mother's maiden name was Lucretia Cheek, daughter of Page Cheek, who died in 1832, from cholera.

    There have been born to William and Nancy J. Winings three children, two sons and one daughter. Their names in the order of their birth are: Secreta J., Wilson W. and Scott Winings. Mr. Winings is not a member of any religious denomination, but in belief is liberal, with a strong tendency to Universalism. Politically he has been a democrat since 1848. In 1872, he espoused the cause of the Grangers, which developed into the National Greenback party, and if their principles could gain control and shape the laws he would gladly vote that ticket.

    In his township he has been frequently elected to offices of trust. He was for two terms elected justice of the peace, and served out a part of another term caused by a vacancy, holding the office for nearly ten years. He was also school treasurer for ten years, and at present is town treasurer and clerk of the board of commissioners. While these offices do not carry with them large trusts, they serve to show in what estimation he is held by his friends and neighbors, with whom he has lived and associated for nearly a quarter of a century. In 1880, he engaged in the grain trade, and at the present time is one of the largest shippers in Lake City. He has a large elevator, and handles large quantities of grain annually.

    Cholera is an acute, diarrheal illness caused by infection of the intestine. It can be mild, but one in 20 infected persons experiences rapid loss of body fluids leading to dehydration and shock. Without treatment, death can occur within hours.

    Mrs.Martha J. [Winings] Hughes died Monday morning [November 3,1919] in her home in Long Creek, aged 86 years. She had been in feeble health for some months. Mrs.Hughes was born in Indiana but had since her marriage with John M. Hughes, 65 year ago made her home in Long Creek Township.

    The surviving members of her family are her children, E. P. Hughes of Springfield, W. P. Hughes, Mrs. Jennie M. Smalley and Mrs. Hattie E. Foley of Decatur, Marion Hughes of Oklahoma, and R. F. Hughes of Chicago, Illinois,

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    ©Roberta Tuller 2020
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