Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Wednesday's Child ~ Remembering Fred Lincoln Webster, Asbury's Brother

A few weeks ago I wrote a post about Asbury Bateman Webster, who died of inflammation of the lungs at nine years of age.

Today we remember Asbury's youngest brother, Fred Lincoln Webster.

Fred was born on  October 28, 1863 in Pecatonica, Winnebago, Illinois.  He was the youngest of eight children born to Moses Augustine Webster and Amanda Melvina Carlisle.  His oldest sibling, Ebenezer Perry Carlisle Webster (my 2nd Great-Grandfather) was 25 years older than him and had already served in the Civil War by the time Fred was born.

Another older brother, Watson Emery Webster (not to be confused with my Great-Grandfather, Watson Emory [Frederick] Webster, a.k.a. "The Traveling Dentist") had also served in the Civil War before Fred was born.  Both Ebenezer and Watson were discharged from the service in Feb and Jan 1863 respectively due to disability.

I've only found Fred in one federal census.  Here's Fred living with his parents, Moses and Amanda in the 1870 Blairstown, Benton, Iowa U.S. Census.
1 His brother Watson and his family are living in the household as well.  Sadly, one year after this census was taken, Fred's mother, Amanda died.  She was only 51 years old at the time of her death.

1870 US Census - Blairstown, Benton, Iowa - Moses Webster Family
1870 U.S. Federal Census, Blairstown, Benton, Iowa (see footnote)

As you can see, Fred was six years old at the time of this census.  A short seven years after this census was taken, Fred passed away.

According to the History And Genealogy of the Gov. John Webster Family of Connecticut, Volume 2, page 1185:
"Fred Lincoln Webster, b. Oct. 28, 1863, was killed by accident, Aug. 21, 1877."
Fred was just two months shy of his fourteenth birthday when he died.  I don't know anything about the accident that caused his death.  I've tried to find newspaper accounts regarding Fred's death, but haven't been able to find anything yet.

I'm not even sure where Fred died.  He could have died in Iowa or even Kansas.  Why Kansas?  Because in the 1880 U.S. Census, Fred's father, Moses, was living in Marshall County, Kansas with his son Ebenezer.  It is possible that sometime following the death of Fred's mother, Amanda, in 1871, Moses and little Fred moved from Iowa to Ebenezer's home in Kansas.

As I related in my post about Fred's brother, Asbury, four of the eight children born to Moses and Amanda Webster died at young ages.  I'd like to remember the other two children in future posts.

Thanks for reading!


© 2013 Copyright by Jana Last

1 Year: 1870; Census Place: Blairstown, Benton, Iowa; Roll: M593_376; Page: 198B; Image: 400; Family History Library Film: 1870 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations, Inc., 2009. Images reproduced by FamilySearch.

2 William Holcomb Webster and Rev. Melville Reuben Webster, D. D., History and Genealogy of the Gov. John Webster Family of Connecticut (Rochester, New York: E. R. Andrews Printing Company, 1915), Vol. 2, pg. 1185



  1. Each life precious. I've stumbled across ancestors killed by runaway horses, drowning in a well, gases in a mine... Read of neighbors killed by a fire flaming while cooking.... The potential for deadly accidents seemed to lurk everywhere.

    1. Hi Kathy,

      I so agree with you that each life is precious. It looks like your ancestors had their share of heartache too. So sad!

      Thank you for taking the time to read my post and for your comments. I really appreciate it.

  2. How sad to lose so many of their children at a young age. I hope you're able to one day learn where he died and where he's buried.

    1. What a beautiful post to honor his memory. I cannot begin to imagine the pain his parents must have suffered, losing so many children over the years.

    2. Hi Debi and Linda,

      I hope that I will be able to find out about the accident that caused Fred's death and where he is buried too.

      It must have been difficult in the extreme for his poor parents to lose so many of their children. I can't imagine the heartache they must have experienced.

      I thank both of you for stopping by and reading my post. And thanks for your comments too.

  3. You have some patience to find all that out, life was hard back then.

    1. Hi Bill,

      Yes, I do believe that life was very hard back then in so many ways.

      Thank you so much for stopping by!

  4. It is sadder than anything when children die. That's one of the shocking things I've found in doing genealogy -- that so many (it seems!) of the siblings of my various ancestors did not live to adulthood. I've not been able to find any information about the cotton-gin accident that killed one of my great uncles at 7 years old (according to a scribbled note in a family record).

    The further back in time I go, the more children seem to be lost to disease. My 10 x g grandparents from England, who had children in Barbados, saw only 3 of 8 survive to adulthood. The early settlers in SC, too, in the late 1600s and 1700s, lost many children. Not to mention the Civil War. It's really eye-opening to see what a toll was taken--by disease, I assume, because only rarely have I found the cause of death. I'll go back now to read about Asbury, to see if you were able to find a cause of death. Very sad.

    1. Hi Mariann,

      Oh yes, it is so sad to find so many of these children passing away at such young ages. I too have found that to be the case in my own genealogy research.

      A cotton-gin accident? Wow! That sounds terrible! Poor little boy.

      Thank you very much for taking the time to read my blog post and for your comments. I really do appreciate it.




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