An American Family History

William Ricketts

Tazewell County, Illinois was formed out of Peoria County in 1827.

Illinois became a state in 1818. A large influx of American settlers came in the 1810s by the Ohio River.

William Ricketts was born on August 29, 1822 in Dearborn (now Ohio) County, Indiana. His parents were William and Elizabeth Ricketts. William was an engineer according to the 1860 census.

He married Josinah Anderson on July 15, 1844 in Tazewell County, Illinois. Josinah was born on February 4, 1823.

Josinah and William's children included:
infant daughters (1845)
Colbert Edwin Ricketts (1848, married Lavina Elmira Devore),
Eli Thomas Ricketts (1850, died as an infant),
Clara Ricketts Smith (1853, married Thomas Smith),
Charles A. Ricketts (1856),
Telva Ricketts Denning (1857, married William H. Denning)
Bertha Ricketts Woodcock (1860, married Charles E. Woodcock) and
Joanna Ricketts.

At the time of the 1850 census they were living in Peoria, Illinois. The household consisted of 29 year old William who was a laborer, Josinah age 29 and Colbert age 2.

At the time of the 1860 census they were living in Washington Township, Tazewell County, Illinois. The household consisted of William age 38 who was an engineer, Josina age 37, C. Edwin, age 9, Clara age 6, and Telva age 3.

William died in 1860.

In 1870 the household was in Metamora. The household consisted of William age 49, Lovina age 48, Edward age 21, Flora age 12, and Bertha age 7.

In 1880 Josinah was living in Metamora, Woodford County, Illinois with Telva and Bertha.

By 1880, 57 year old Josinah was a widow and living with Telpha age 23 and Bertha age 20.

Josinah died in January, 1889.

Woodford County, Illinois was formed in 1841 from parts of Tazewell and McLean Counties. Metamora (Hanover before 1845) was the county seat from 1843-1894.



The death of Mrs. Josinah Ricketts occurred last Thursday night at her late residence in this city. Mrs. Ricketts, was born in the village of Sun, Indiana on the 4th day of February 1823 and came with her parents to this state in September 1837, first settling in Washington. Her maiden name was Josinah Anderson and she was married to William Ricketts on the 15th day of July 1844 and there was born to them a family of eight children, four of whom, one son and three daughters are still ???lady and higly respected by all who knew her. The funeral took place at her late residence Saturday noon, conducted by the Rev. A.M. Conard and the remains were taken to Washington for burial.


Children of William Ricketts
and Elizabeth Oxley

  • Celia Ricketts Holmes
  • John Ricketts
  • Eli Ricketts
  • Mary Ann Ricketts Planck Clutter
  • Isaac Ricketts
  • William Ricketts
  • Prior Ricketts
  • Eliza Ricketts
  • James Ricketts
  • Elizabeth Ricketts
  • William Ricketts
    and Harriet Dean

  • Garrett Larew Ricketts
  • Robert L. Ricketts
  • Sarah L. Ricketts Edwards
  • Isabella Ricketts King
  • Samuel Lowe Ricketts
  • Susanna Ricketts
  • Marian Amanda Ricketts Kent
  • George Washington Ricketts
  • Andrew Jackson Ricketts
  • Noah J. Ricketts

    Groom 50 and Bride 20
    Old Man Got his Bride by Strategy and $10 Fee.

    Winamac, Ind., Aug. 19.--After a few hours' courtship, Charles Woodcock, aged 60, and Stella Smith, aged 20, of Francisville, were married at this place. Miss Smith had for years been cared for by a friend of Woodcock's and was otherwise homeless. Woodcock took a fancy to the young lady and it is alleged gave her guardian $10 to "speak a good word" for him.

    The guardian according to report took the money and informed the girl that he could no longer afford to keep her and that she must do for herself. She was then told of Woodcock's offer to marry her and urged to consent even though the would-be-groom was three times her age and was old enough to be Oslerized. Cast out from the only home she had and with no friends to go to she accepted and went to the county seat with him where they were married.

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    ©Roberta Tuller 2023
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