30 November 2010

Divorce Action in Williams County, Ohio - Westfall

John S. Westfall v Josephine L. Crummell Westfall

Faithful and Indulgent Husband Disheartened, Divorce in Williams County, Ohio, 1885

By Pamela Pattison Lash (updated 2010)

He accused his wife of adultery and residing in a house of ill fame.  He was a faithful and indulgent husband but after two years of marriage, he was fed up with his wife's wild behavior.

Josephine Crummell, born in July 1863 in Ohio, was the daughter of Christopher and Rachel Kent Crummell, who themselves were married in Wms Co on 20 Aug 1862, but later moved to Mt. Pleasant, Isabella Co, MI.  Josephine was the granddaughter of Ashford and Nancy Kent, 1850 residents of Springfield Twp, Wms Co, OH.  According to the 1880 Bryan, Williams Co, OH federal census p636C the Crummel family was listed as CC 37 OH laborer, Rachel 44 OH, Josephine 16 OH, Margaret 13 OH, Arthur 11 OH, and Bertha 3 OH.

Josephine married John S. Westfall in Bryan on 9 July 1883 (Marriages V5 #368).  According to the divorce request by John in the Williams County, Ohio Civil and Criminal Court records (Journal 13 p149 - 6 June 1885; Roll 41 Box 138 case number 1466), Josephine left for Cincinnati, OH in the fall of 1884 and resided in a house of prostitution until the spring of 1885 when she returned to Bryan and lived in another ill fame residence.  She committed adultery during her stay in Cincinnati with diverse men unknown to John, and while in Bryan she was unfaithful with a Mr. Thompson.  He brought several witnesses to court including Sheriff August Heidley, Lemuel Myers, and Samuel Shafer.  The court agreed, after listening to the witnesses, that John should receive a divorce and one was issued. 

Josephine married Allen Smith on 13 Feb 1886, and the couple had a daughter, Nellie, born in 1888.  The Smith family was enumerated in the 1900 Riverside, Missaukee, MI federal census p6B as Allen 41 OH, Josephine 36 OH, and daughter Nellie 12 OH. Josephine died on 31 July 1912 in McBain, Missaukee Co, MI.  

John Westfall may be the son of Tobias Westfall and Nancy Patrick; if so, John, a Canadian native born in 1860, died in Isabella Co, MI on 4 Nov 1902.  He married Alvina or Vina Audlin and had several children.

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