March 9, 2012

Lawrence Winkler and Frances "Fannie" Paine

Winkler 1800 Census - Burke County, NC
Lawrence Winkler was born on 15 Jan 1771 to who is believed to be Hans Jacob Winkler. It is most likely he was born in Morganton, Burke, North Carolina or Rhine River area of Prussia , however, is not known for certain if this is true. It is also believed he had 3 brothers, Joseph, Conrad, and Thomas who also lived in Morganton but a direct and definitive relation other than the Winkler name has yet to be discovered.

Frances Paine was born to George & Elizabeth "Lizzie" Paine of Spotsylvania County, Virginia about 1775 (date and location unknown).

Winkler 1810 Census - Monongalia County
Lawrence Winkler married Frances "Fannie" Paine in 1795. A belief is that Fannie was from New Jersey and this is also where the marriage is said to have taken place, but there is no proof of this and it is more believable that they married in Burke County instead. Backing up the belief that Lawrence and Fannie's marriage in North Carolina is that Fannie's parents are know to have relocated from Spotsylvania County, VA to Burke County, NC by 1790. 

Green Twp.
1819 Census
Lawrence and Fannie started their family in Burke, North Carolina where Fannie gave birth to their first child, daughter Rebecca, in 1797, followed by sons John, George, and James.

Winkler Family 1820 Census
In 1806, being opposed to slavery, Lawrence decided to leave Burke, North Carolina and seek home in one of the free states, with the intention of settling in Stubenville, OH with relatives (3 years after Ohio receives statehood).

However, the family had to halt relocation in the middle of what is now Monongalia County, West Virginia, (it was still a part of Virginia at the time) because of sickness.

Lawrence's Land Patent
Certificate (1814)
Lawrence's Land Patent
Certificate (1819)
Over the next seven and a half years the family lived in Monongalia County and Lawrence and Fannie would welcome 3 more girls to the family. It wouldn’t be until Feb 1814 when Lawrence finally would decide to continue his journey northward to Stubenville.

Lawrence set out with his eldest son John. They took one horse on which to carry provisions and occasionally ride. They also drove one cow and calf. They crossed the Ohio River at Steubenville, where some of his relatives lived, and where he had expected to locate. Not being pleased with the country there, he obtained considerable information about the country farther north, and decided to travel on to Northern Ohio.

Lawrence’s Brother-in-law Jacob Brakefield had preceded him and settled in what is now Wayne County.  The country was almost an unbroken wilderness covered in lush forest. After they left Canton, Ohio, it was with great difficulty he found his way and arrived at the cabin of Jacob Brakefield safe, but weary and sore.

Winkler Family 1823 Census
After listening to Jacob’s glowing account of the opportunities available in this unbroken wilderness, the three men set out and together they scouted land overgrown with heavy timber in a location known as East Union, where there were maybe only 2 cabins at the time. Lawrence like what he saw and traveled to the local government land office in Canton, OH and purchased property on section 22 in what became known as Green Township, 3 miles west of Orrville.

On returning, Lawrence and son John immediately started to set up camp and shelter from weather and wild animals. They proceeded to erect pens for their horse, cow and calf. They cleared a small area of land and planted potatoes. Then, they staked off four acres and began chopping trees, clearing brush and preparing logs to build a cabin.

Green Township Land Map (1826)
Word is that Indians were many in the area but were peaceful and friendly and often stopped by their camp.

It took Lawrence and his son 3 months to clear the area and prepare all the logs needed for a house. When finished, they packed up and headed for Virginia. On 01 Oct 1814, Lawrence left Monongalia County, Virginia (WV) with the entire family to return Green.

NOTE: It should be mentioned that at this time America was in the middle of the War of 1812 with Britain and the Indians. Months prior, in August of 1814, Washington was practically burned to the ground.

The road was rough and they are said to have experienced many delays, most of them requiring Lawrence and Jacob to cut a path wide enough for their wagon to travel.

Green Township Tax Records (1826)
Three days after their arrival, Lawrence sent John out to gather all the men he could find around their rural wilderness homestead to assist in raising the cabin with the logs they had previously prepared. Several families had moved into the area that summer and John returned with seven men who were more than happy to respond to the call. By nightfall the Winklers had an 18x20 ft. cabin and a roof. Lawrence cut a door, built a fire and the family had a place they could call home.

Five years later, Lawrence went back to the Government land offices in Canton and purchased the rest of Section 22’s southern half on 23 Apr 1819 in Green, Wayne, Ohio. Lawrence would own a total of 167 acres between the two southern quadrants of section 22.

Winkler Family 1840 Census
Lawrence Winkler died on 04 Mar 1848 in Wayne Township, Wayne, Ohio at the age of 77 years. He was buried on 08 Mar 1848 in Wayne Township at the Wayne Presbyterian Church Cemetery.

Fanny Winkler - 1850 Census
After Lawrence’s death, Fannie continued to live in the family house with daughter Mary. Sons Jacob and Enoch also lived with their wives in their own houses on the farm.

On 20 Jun 1859, Frances Fannie Winkler died in Wayne Township and was buried with her husband at the Wayne Presbyterian Church Cemetery.

Children of Lawrence & Fannie Winkler
1. Rebecca Winkler, 11 Mar 1797 – 18 Mar 1887
2. Johan Jacob “John” Winkler, 22 Apr 1799 – 22 May 1886
3. George Winkler, 6 May 1801 – 28 Jul 1877
4. James Winkler, 8 Feb 1804 – Dec 1846
5. Lydia Winkler, 19 Feb 1848 – 3 Jun 1939
6. Mary Winkler, 8 Sep 1806 – 1878
7. Edia Ann “Eady” Winkler, 19 Apr 1812 – 13 Mar 1893
8. Jacob D. Winkler, 6 Mar 1815 – 6 Sep 1890
9. Enoch Winkler, 8 Jun 1819 – 5 Aug 1867

Sourced from: The Winkler History, by W.S. Myers, 1900 in Dallas, TX; Published 1909

Note: Many early facts that W.S. Myers noted about Lawrence Winkler seem to be untrue. He states Lawrence was originally born along the Rhine River in Prussia (Germany), however proof of this has yet to be found (see below). He also mentioned that Fannie was from NJ and they were married there. No proof has been found of this either. Lawrence was living in NC at the time based on 1800 census records. Lawrence's father is said to be Hans Jacob and I have seen no proof of that either. However, the majority of the information he relays about Lawrence and Fannie after their marriage matches up with recovered documents.

As often as old family stories go, it is more likely the stories of Lawrence's birth in Prussia and marriage in New Jersey are accurate to Lawrence's ancestors and not Lawrence himself. The New Jersey marriage is probably for Lawrence's parents and either his father or grandfather was born along the Rhine river in Prussia.

UPDATE: Since writing this I have stumbled across a website called the Winkler DNA Genealogy. Here two volunteers, Rosemary and William, have taken the time to organize as many direct Winkler descendants as they could, list which Winkler ancestor their genealogy research has connected to them to, and share a specific string of their DNA results. The ultimate goal is to find enough people and who they descend from and use these DNA results to make a definitive connection back the next few generations (if possible).

It seems DNA evidence has proven that that Lawrence indeed was born in the USA and that he descends from one of three Winkler ancestors who immigrated to Philidelphia in 1753 aboard the ship "Neptune". These three Winklers were Conradt, Hans Jacob, and Hans Domas (Thomas).

I am not educated in reading DNA charts but it appears the least change in DNA between Lawrence and other Winklers is to Conradt. This could mean Conradt is his father or grandfather, but since no DNA results are listed from someone who has traced their lineage back to Hans Jacob, it could just mean that Hans and Conradt were brothers. Either way this is great news and a wonderful breakthrough!

If you are a direct WINKLER descendant along the paternal line (ie. your dad, his dad, his dad's dad...  etc. were all Winklers) I highly recommend you look into joining this DNA project. You can request more information via the link above or visit for more information about DNA testing (I am not affiliated with FTDNA but the project is run with their help).

Lawrence Winkler's GraveFrances Paine's Grave

Lawrence's Will (Page 1) Lawrence's Will (Page 2)

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