Notes from the White County Historical Society

By Charlene Shields

Notes from the White County Historical Society as they appear in "The Carmi Times."

Copyright ©2002 by "The Carmi Times" Permission to reprint granted to Cindy Birk Conley and the ILGenWeb by Tammy Knox, editor, "The Carmi Times."

What happened to Emily Wells?

Emily Wells (probably the daughter of Mary and David Wells) was born
about 1825 in Posey County, Ind. In 1843, she married Roswell (Raswell)
Howell in White County.

They had seven or eight known children, according to the 1860 and 1870
White County census: Mary Catherine, Sarah J., Hester Ann, Calvin,
Melvina, Elizabeth and Winny A.

This family is not in the 1880 White County census. And I find no
further reference to Emily Wells Howell.

In searching, I did find out what happened to Raswell Howell. The Sept.
15, 1881 Mercury-Independent had the following article:

"But few persons in this vicinity have not known Raswell Howell, a man
whose chief fault was his love of liquor. For a long time past he has
been around Grayville, working for the different saloon keepers for his
liquor. Last Friday he went into Vertrees & Colvin's saloon, and
complaining of having a chill, sat down, and in a short time afterwards
it was discovered that he was dead, his death evidently having been
caused by a congestive chill."

Further investigation showed Raswell Howell was interred at Charles
Cemetery (Calvin), as a government marker was erected showing his
service as a Civil War soldier.

If wife Emily is buried there, no stone is in evidence.

One may let his mind wander as to what happened. Did Raswell develop a
drinking habit as a result of the horrors he encountered from service in
the Civil War? Or did Raswell develop a drinking habit as a result of
the sorrow of losing his wife in death? Or did Emily live on and leave
Raswell because of his drinking? Did Emily re-marry so we lose contact
with her because we don't know her new name? Did she leave the area with
her new husband?

As the reader may deduce, I'm allowing my imagination to run far afield.
And, since I'm a Wells researcher, I'd like to know what really happened
to Emily Wells Howell. (There are several other Wells researchers who
are interested, also.)

Is there anyone out there who can shed some light on this dilemma? If
so, please call me at 1-618-966-3744.

The Centerville Ripsnorters 4-H Club paid our library a visit on
Wednesday. They have been helpful in the past in reading tombstones for
our White County cemeteries project, and we were delighted to meet these
young people.

The Genealogy Library is open Tuesdays through Saturdays from 10 a.m. to
2 p.m.

Address letters to Genealogy, White County Historical Society, PO Box
121, Carmi, IL 62821.

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The Coordinator for the White County, Illinois ILGenWeb page is Cindy Birk Conley

Copyright © 2002 by Cindy Birk Conley, all rights reserved. For personal use only. Commercial use of the information contained in these pages is strictly prohibited without prior permission. If copied, this copyright notice must appear with the information.