Julia Bourquin Vernier v Charles H. Vernier
The Frenchwoman's Revenge, Divorce in Williams County, Ohio, 1884
By Pamela Pattison Lash (updated 2010)
Two families immigrated from France to the US and eventually settled in Williams County, Ohio. A son and daughter from each neighboring household fell in love and married, but when the Frenchman's eye wandered, it was his wife who took action and hit him where it counted, in the pocketbook.
Charles H. Vernier, b. 19 Aug 1844, FR, was the son of George and Catherine Certier Vernier, both French natives who brought their family to the US c.1847 and initially settled in German Twp, Fulton Co, OH, on 80 acres of farmland. The Vernier family was enumerated in the 1850 German Twp federal census, p365B, as George 38, Catherine 35, Jacob 12, George 10, Catherine 9, Frederic 8, Charles 6, Emily 4, and Peter 2 OH. The Verniers had 13 children so they eventually doubled the size of their original homestead and later moved to Archbold, Fulton Co, OH, c1874. Charles at 18 years of age was a wagonmaker by trade.
He married Julia Bourquin, also a FR native, on 26 Oct 1867, Fulton Co, OH (Marriages V3 p146). Julia, born in June 1850, was the daughter of Peter and Suzette Mettetal Bourquin who came to the US between 1842-1844. The Bourquins were found in the 1850 German Twp, Fulton Co federal census, p366, as Jacques 37, Catherine 30, Catherine 8, Louisa 6 OH, and Peter 4 OH.
Charles and Julia came to Stryker, Springfield Twp, Wms Co c1868 where he opened a wagon and blacksmith shop. In 1872 he set up a store where he sold groceries and agricultural supplies. The family was listed in the 1870 Springfield Twp federal census p46 as Charles 24 wagonmaker, Julia 20, Julia 1 OH, Burr 6 months OH. Again they were enumerated there in the 1880 federal census p688A as Charles 35, Julia 29, Jule 11 OH, Charley 10 OH, Harmon 9 OH, Alfred 4 OH, and Alsid(m) 10/12 OH. The couple had the following five sons: Julius C (1868), Charles P. (Jan 1870), Herman G. (16 Apr 1871), Alfred W. (11 June 1876), and Alsid G. (8 July 1879). In 1881 Charles' business burned and in 1882 he set up a hardware store.
Julia petitioned the Williams County, Ohio Civil and Criminal Court (Journal 12 p266 - 12 Apr 1884; p282 - 3 June 1884; p322 - 15 July 1884; Journal 13 p220 - 2 July 1885; Roll 39 case number 1132) stating that she wanted a divorce on the grounds of gross neglect and adultery. There was a birth record in Wms Co (V2p47) showing a Charles Verner and Maggie Wechaton as parents of Florence Vernier, born 21 Jan 1883, Stryker. It is unknown at this time as to whether this is the proof of Julia's adultery claim against her husband. Note the spelling of Verner; Wechaton could be Whetstone as there was a Margaret Whetstone living in the neighborhood then.
Julia returned to the court several times after the divorce was granted, asking for more alimony. Once Julia told the court she was in possession of real estate and had been receiving profits from rents but the money had stopped. Charles was being sued by Charleton C. Doughlas for $616 over a real estate mortgage Charles failed to pay on Lot 57, Tingley's Addition, Stryker.
Julia remarried on 18 Apr 1889, Wms Co (Marriages V5 #1482) to George F. Boillot, a widower, b. May 1848, FR. The couple and his children were found in the federal census of 1900 in Springfield Twp. George was married previously to Mary Ann Roux on 20 Aug 1870 Wms Co (Marriages V4 p126) and had three known children, Amelia, Alfred, and Adaline.
Charles H. Vernier may have remarried but currently this has not been proven. There was a marriage in Wms Co (Marriages V5 #219) for a Charles H. Vernier and Camilla Guyman, 5 Oct 1882. There was a Charles Vernier (1852 - 1932) buried in the Oakwood Cemetery, Stryker, but the birthdate does not match what is known of this subject. What is known is that Julia died on 24 Sept 1929 and was buried in the Lockport Cemetery, Brady Twp under the name of Julia Vernier with the inscription on her tombstone as "mother of Julius, Charles, Harmon, Alfred, and Alcid".