I found the article in a folder at the Bryan library under Social Customs of Williams County. Paul Van Gundy also mentioned it in The Stories of Fountain City. This piqued my interest in the eloping couple and so I did a little research of my own to see what more could be found. I’ll start with the article.
The Bryan Democrat, Jan 1875
James Ludwich, engineer at the Tub Works, has been paying elevated attention to Lizzie, daughter of Amos Briner, a well known citizen of this famous Fountain City. Lizzie, a sweet sixteen, reciprocated, but her stern parent looked on with disfavor. James, though skilful and industrious, belongs to another church and is suspected of occasional indulgence in tangle-leg whiskey and Lizzie is a household necessity without which her father couldn’t keep house very well. Amos, forgetful of the days when he freshed around, forbade the banns. But Monday morning James drove up with a quick-stepping team, snatched the tender bud from the cottage, and hied for friendly Michigan, where age nor previous condition is not questioned. The irate sire procured a lively team and drove like a cuss after them, but they reached the Michigan line first and were bound into one, while the senior Briner returned toward evening, sad, disconsolate, and mad. May peace and prosperity go with them.
Note that the groom’s surname can also be found as Ledwick. It would appear that James was a Catholic and drank to excess at times in Amos Briner’s opinion. I discovered that James had been married before and had three small children from that marriage, two of whom lived with his parents and brother c1880. I have not determined whether the wife died or she was separated or divorced from James. Perhaps Amos Briner felt Lizzie was being propelled into motherhood with another woman’s children too quickly. Perhaps the father believed Lizzie was too young to know her own heart. Also, James was more of a contemporary to Lizzie’s father so perhaps Amos felt James was too old for his daughter. Both men were Civil War veterans and James seemed to have steady employment so one would think the reasons for Amos’ objections were down to religion or the sneaky behavior of the two. Amos definitely tried to stop the marriage in any event. The couple appeared to have made a good match as they stayed married until Lizzie’s death and had six children with three surviving to adulthood.
First I’ll introduce Lizzie’s parents:
Amos Franklin Briner (1831 Washington Twp, Pickaway Co, OH – 1880 IN – perhaps South Bend, St Joseph Co, IN) s/o John and Mary Roads Briner/Breiner.
1850 Hopewell, Seneca, Ohio; Roll: M432_728; Page: 294A; Image: 12.
h/h 46/46 Briner, John 61 PA farmer
Mary 62 PA
David 29 OH farmer
Amos 20 OH farmer
Amos Briner applied for a license to wed Sarah Clinger on 22 Aug 1851 in Seneca Co, OH – but only license found, no marriage certificate.
Angeline Amanda Kent (1836 Columbiana Co, OH -14 Mar 1882 South Bend, St. Joseph Co, IN) d/o Benjamin and Alse Mankin Kent.
1850 Pulaski, Williams, Ohio; Roll: M432_741; Page: 86A; Image: 171.
h/h 273/280 Kent, Benjamin 38 VA plasterer
Ancy 36 OH
Charlotte 17 OH
Nathaniel 15 OH
Angeline 14 OH
Alvina 12 OH
Francis 7 OH
Amos Franklin Briner married Angeline Kent in Williams Co, OH on 26 Aug 1855 (Marriages V2 p158).
1860 Superior, Williams, Ohio; Roll: M653_1052; Page: 200; Image: 405; Family History Library Film: 805052.
h/h /1083 Buner, Amos 29 PA farmer
Angeline 22 OH
Aaron 3 OH
Elizabeth 2 OH
John 4/12 OH
Amos Briner enlisted in Co H 3rd Ohio Cavalry as a private on 20 Aug 1861 and mustered out on 1 Dec 1861. He transferred to Co G 3rd Ohio Cavalry on 11 Dec 1861 as a private and mustered out on 1 Oct 1862. He was promoted to Full 1st Sergeant on 30 Oct 1863 enlisting in Co H 9th Ohio Cavalry on 30 Oct 1863 and later promoted to full 2nd LT on 3 Nov 1864; he mustered out on 20 July 1865 at Lexington, NC.
1870 Bryan, Williams, Ohio; Roll: M593_1282; Page: 182A; Image: 367; Family History Library Film: 552781.
h/h 126/126 Briner, Amos 39 PA teamster
Angeline 33 OH
Aaron 14 OH
Elizabeth 12 OH
John 10 OH
George 9 OH
Dora 6 OH
Amos 4 OH
Elizabeth Emeline Briner (26/27 June 1858 Bryan, Williams Co, OH – 1 July 1909 Milwaukee, Milwaukee Co, WI or Racine, Racine Co, WI)
Next, here is some data on James Ledwick.
James Ledwick (26 July 1844 Horseheads, Chemung Co, NY – 3 Aug 1924 Wauwatosa, Milwaukee Co, WI) s/o James and Elizabeth Cook Ledwick
1850 Mishawaka, St Joseph, Indiana; Roll: M432_171; Page: 114B; Image: 233.
h/h 233/233 Ledwitch, James 41 Ire mason
Elisa 30 Ire
Maria 14 NY
Joseph 10 NY
James 6 NY
Hellen 4 NY
Thomas 2 MI
1860 South Bend, St Joseph, Indiana; Roll: M653_295; Page: 324; Image: 324; Family History Library Film: 803295.
h/h 218/206 Ledwick, James 50 Ire stone mason
Elisa 35 Ire
Joseph 19 NY brickmaker
James 15 NY laborer
Ellen 13 NY
Thomas 12 MI
Henry 9 IN
Garragan, John 38 Ire ditcher
James Ledwick enlisted as private 24 July 1862 in South Bend, IN Co C 73rd Indiana Infantry (see enlistment record below)
James Ledwick/Ledwitch married Catherine Schultz on 5 Dec 1862 in Montgomery, Daviess Co, IN. They had the following children:
1. Amy M 1864 IN -
2. Thomas 1866 South Bend, IN –
3. William 1869 South Bend, IN –
Note that Thomas 14 IN-IN-MI and William Ledwick 11 IN-IN-MI lived with their paternal uncle and their paternal grandparents in 1880 South Bend, Saint Joseph, Indiana; Roll: 309; Family History Film: 1254309; Page: 475B; Enumeration District: 163; Image: 0580.
1870 Hudson, Lenawee, Michigan; Roll: M593_685; Page: 314A; Image: 632; Family History Library Film: 552184.
h/h 519/508 Ledwick, James 27 works BT factory NY
Kate 27 FR
Amy M 6 IN
Elizabeth Briner married James Ledwick on 19 Jan 1874 @ the age of 15 ½. The marriage supposedly happened in January of 1875 but online sources state 19 Jan 1874 in Hudson, Lenawee Co, MI; the place was to be across the line in Michigan, which would place the geographical location as Branch or Hillsdale Counties; however, Lenawee Co, MI is not that great a distance.
1. Addie 1876-1876 South Bend, St. Joseph Co, IN
2. Capitola May 1877 South Bend, IN -
3. Mabel Irene Lizzie 1879 South Bend, IN –
4. Isadora Olivia 1881 South Bend, IN -
5. James 1884-1885 South Bend, IN
6. Frances Marie 1895 – 1895 Racine, Racine Co, WI
Note that shortly after the marriage James took his bride Lizzie back home to South Bend, IN and sometime around then Angeline Briner as a widow moved her family to South Bend as well. Amos Briner apparently died between 1875-1880 and may have moved to South Bend prior to his death. There is no record of his death in Williams County. Perhaps Amos reconciled with the eloping couple before his death.
1880 South Bend, Saint Joseph, Indiana; Roll: 309; Family History Film: 1254309; Page: 452C; Enumeration District: 163; Image: 0533.
h/h 398/448 Briner, Angeline 42 widow OH-VA-VA
John 21 son OH-OH-OH works in brickyard
George 19 son OH-OH-OH works in brickyard
Charlotte 17 dau-in-law IN-OH-OH
Dora May 17 dau OH-OH-OH
Amos 15 OH-OH-OH son works in planning mill
1880 South Bend, Saint Joseph, Indiana; Roll: 309; Family History Film: 1254309; Page: 434C; Enumeration District: 163; Image: 0491.
9 Monroe St
h/h 63/72 Ledwick, James 35 NY-Ire-Ire engineer
Elizabeth 21 wife OH-OH-OH
Minnie 16 sis-in-law IN-OH-OH
Capitels 3 dau IN-OH-IN
Lizzie 8M – October dau IN-OH-IN
1895 Racine, Racine Co, WI – State of Wisconsin Enumeration of Soldiers and Sailors #154 James Ledwich, Co C 73rd Indiana Infantry as private, PO State
1900 Racine Ward 6, Racine, Wisconsin; Roll: T623_1814; Page: 15B; Enumeration District: 43.
h/h 268/300 Ledwick, James 55 (July 1844) mar 25Y NY-Ire-Ire no occupation
Elizabeth 40 (June 1858) wife 6/3 ch OH-PA-PA
Capitola 24 (May 1876) dau IN-NY-OH bookkeeper
Mable O 20 (Sept 1879) dau IN-NY-OH stenographer
Isadore 22 (Oct 1897) dau IN-NY-OH works in general office
Holms, Carrie 13 (June 1886) servant WI-Denmark-Denmark
Layen, Louis 24 (Sept 1865) boarder WI-WI-Norway physician
1905 Wisconsin State Census, 1 June 1905
h/h 369 Ledwick, James 62 NY-Ire engineer
Elizabeth 47 OH-OH
Mabel 25 IN-NY stenographer
Isadore 23 IN-NY
1910 Racine Ward 11, Racine, Wisconsin; Roll: T624_1734; Page: 18B; Enumeration District: 0084; Image: 1225; FHL Number: 1375747.
143 Ann St
h/h 352/402 Ludowick, James 65 NY-Ire-NY retired engineer, widower
Mabel dau 28 IN-NY-OH stenographer, single
1917 US National Home for Disabled Veterans
James Ledwick – admitted in July 1917 to Wood, Washington Co, WI facility
Enlisted as private 24 July 1862 in South Bend, IN Co C 73rd Indiana Infantry; discharged 24 July 1865 in Alabama; Hyper dilation of heart, vision and hearing problems as well as problems with his legs
Physical Description/Domestic History - 5’10”, blue eyes, grey hair, born in NY; Catholic, laborer, can read and write, widower, last residence: Racine, WI
Died 3 Aug 1924; body transferred and burial in Racine, WI; he had a CW pension; effects shipped to Captiola Fazen of Racine
1920 Wauwatosa, Milwaukee, Wisconsin; Roll: T625_2006; Page: 5B; Enumeration District: 326; Image: 883.
James Ledwick, inmate of National Home for Disabled Veterans 75 NY-US-US widower