Williams was born on December 18, 1821 in Lancaster County,
married Julia Ann Margaret Duncan on
1846 in Salisbury Township, Lancaster County by Rev. John Wallace of
Pequea Presbyterian Church in Salisbury Township.1
Julia Ann Duncan was born on Jul 6,
1827 in also in Lancaster County. Julia is a daughter of James
Duncan (born Ireland) and Nancy Groff from Lancaster. Most likely, James
and Nancy never married. You can find Julia in censuses in the 1830's
living as a "church charge" on Duncan's Island, Perry County, PA, where
she was likely orphaned.
is recorded in the 1850 Census, 1860 census, 1870 census, 1880 census
and 1900 census.
Census records Daniel's name as John. Perhaps his full name was
Julia lived on a farm on Conestoga Boulevard north of Safe Harbor,
Conestoga Township, Lancaster County. The farm is located approximately
0.7 miles north of the River Road intersection. The farm coincides
with the 1860-1880 map showing Daniel Williams as the land owner.
on October 1, 1902 in Conestoga, Pennsylvania. Julia died of pneumonia
on February 12, 1908 in Little Washington, Pennsylvania.
both buried at the
Mount Zion Evangelical Congregational
Cemetery in Conestoga Township, Lancaster County.
Daniel's estate at the time of
his decease was recorded in
the Lancaster County courthouse and consists of the following:
contents in house $26.50; 1/2 interest in corn $12.50; corn sheller, hay
rake and sleigh $1.50; 3 1/2 bushels of rye $1.75; 1/2 interest in rye
straw $4.00; cow $10.00; 2,400 tobacco lath $10.00; horse $15.00; wagon
$7.00; buggy $6.00; market wagon $5.00; spike harrow $2.00;
shovel-harrow, plow and wheel-barrow $6.00; trough, cradle and ladder
$1.25; lot of posts and lumber $1.50; 1/2 interest in tobacco $25.00,
harness $1.50; and a grind-stone and stove $0.50, which totaled $137.00.
The New Era
Newspaper from Lancaster published the following obituary for Daniel on
October 3, 1902:
Aged Colored Man Dead. Daniel Williams, a
well-known colored man, of near Conestoga Centre, died on Thursday from
heart disease, aged eighty-one years. His wife and several children
survive. The funeral will be held on Saturday morning at nine o'clock at
the house, and at ten o'clock at Mount Zion Church.
following was recorded in the journal of a funeral director in
Saturday, October 4, 1902 Partly Cloudy, Very Damp Day
Attending funeral of Daniel Williams (colored).
Born 12-12-1821 Died 10-1-1902 Aged 80 yrs 7 month 19 days
Rev. Hiram McVey preached from Isaiah 57:15 on the word "eternity"
Rev. Tobias Finefrock made a few remarks -6 carriages
Bearers: Edward Duke, Jacoby Henry, Henry Shenk, Harry Sensening
For thus saith the high and lofty One that inhabiteth eternity, whose name
is Holy; I dwell in the high and holy place, with him also that is
of a contrite and humble spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble, and
to revive the heart of the contrite ones.
Daniel had a black skin color as evidenced
by his obituary and the funeral director notes. In addition,
the five censuses that Daniel was recorded in, he was listed as mulatto in
four censuses and black in one census. Therefore, he may have had one
black parent and one white parent. Julia had a white skin color as
evidenced by her death certificate and we know that her father came from
Ireland. In addition, Julia was listed as white in three census and mulatto in
two censuses (most likely by mistake). Daniel's son Jacob D. Williams
appears to have fair skin based on a
photograph of him late in age. One of the descendents of Jacob D.
Williams (son of Daniel) said that she heard of the potential of blacks in
the family ancestry. Also, one of the descendents from the same line went
to see a dermatologist regarding a
skin condition she was having. The dermatologist said that she surprised
him because the condition she had was predominately only found in the
black community. A story was also handed down of
some black ancestry in the line of Amaziah Williams (son of Daniel).
Daniel's father was most likely Jacob
Williams, who lived in Manor from 1820-1830, had children on the poor
list, was "colored" and owned a small piece of land. No mother was listed.
following information was received from the Lancaster County Historical
Society in January 2013: ....I
checked the "poor childrens list," for Daniel Williams.....I found a
Daniel William[s] who was 8 years old in 1829 and 9 years old in 1830
being a poor child in Manor Township. (the township adjacent to Conestoga
Township). I also found the following Williams childrens' names: Amos (who
may have been a twin to Daniel--same age), a Jacob who would have been
born in 1819, a Maryann who would have been born c. 1815, and an Elizabeth
who seemed to be the youngest child. In varied documents they were
designated as being Negro or Black. We need to consult the original
documents for more specific information. It appears that as far back as
the 1820's, they were thought to be of that race. Unfortunately, there
were no parents listed.
Marriage Records of Rev. John Wallace of Pequea Presbyterian Church,
Salisbury Township, 1833-1866
June 1, 1846 Daniel Williams (Salisbury
Township) and Julia Ann Dunken (Drumore)