William J. Brooks, born about 1833

Grandfather of Charles Henry Wheeling

According to the 1870 United States Federal Census, William Brooks was 37 years old and living with his wife, Ann, and five children in Jacksonville, Illinois (Morgan county) on June 15, 1870. William was a carpenter. Ann kept house, presumably, her home. All wives on the page had “keep house” listed as their “Profession, Occupation or Trade”.

William was born in the State of New York. His parents were also born in the United States. Ann was born in Ireland to parents of Irish birth. All of William and Ann’s children were born in Illinois. The children listed in the 1870 Census were Laura, age 14, Alice, age 12, Emma, age 8, William, age 6 and Mary, age 3. Laura, Alice and Emma had attended school within the last year. The value of real estate owned appears to be “1200”; however, the handwriting is difficult to read.

According to the 1880 United States Federal Census, on June 23, 1880, William and his wife Annie, lived in Griggsville, Illinois (Pike County) with four children. William was a carpenter. He was 49 years old. Both of his parents were born in Massachusetts. Annie’s occupation was “keeping house”. She was 43 years old. The children living in the home were Emma, William, Mary E. and Frank. Emma was 17 years old. No occupation is listed for her. William was 16 years old. He was an apprentice to a harness maker. Mary E. is 13 years old and Frank is 3 years old. Mary E. was the only Brooks child to have attended school within the census year.

Discrepancy: William was 37 years old on June 15, 1870. This would place his birthday in 1833. On June 23, 1880, it’s written that he is 49 years old. This would put his birthday in 1831. William’s birthday could have fallen between June 15th and June 23rd. For example, he could have turned 38 years old on June 20, 1870. In that case, he would have been 48 years old on June 23, 1880. Perhaps whoever gave the data to the census taker made a mistake by one year?

If you have information on William J. Brooks, I would love to hear from you.

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