Sunday, July 16, 2017

A Surname Caught My Eye -- Part Three

In Part One of A Surname Caught My Eye, I described how a description of the book, Bullets, Brothels & Blood led to a search for the Wonch and Leppard family names mentioned together. This led me to newspaper articles about the death of a mother and her four children in a house fire near Barrie, Ontario. The mother was the daughter of J. Leppard from near Markdale, Ontario. I found their death registrations and found that Mrs. Wonch was named Mary. 

In Part Two, the closest match for a marriage for a William Wonch to a Mary Leppard was William Wonch to Elizabeth Jane Leopard, daughter of James and Rose Ann Leopard. In the 1871 census, there was a James Leppard family with daughters, Mary, Elizabeth, and Bridget (name of the witness) and wife named Rose Ann. Looking at the Markdale newspaper again, I found another article on the same page showing that James Leopard was also the father of the wife of the late Cook Teets. 

While Cook Teets is the name of a character in a novel that I am going to read next, there is another character in the book, I didn't mention at the end of Part Two. The description on the back of the book reads: "An Act of Injustice is inspired by the true stories of Rosannah Leppard and Cook Teets . . . ." [1]

I know from local history that Cook Teets was the first person to be hanged in Owen Sound. 

Now, I can't wait to read the book.

Now back to the research at hand. There is no mention in any of the articles the first name of the woman burned in the fire. The question is "Was Mary or Elizabeth Jane the name of the wife of William Wonch?"  Possible research would be to follow the Mary Leppards that I found marriage registrations for.

Now back to the book that started this hunt:
Bullets, Brothels & Blood. In the list of characters are these familiar names: William Wonch, Mary Wonch, Eliza Jane Wonch, Roseannah Leppard and Cook Teets.[3]

It looks like I have another book to add to my want to read list.

[1] Ray Argyle, An Act of Injustice, Oakville, ON : Mosaic Press, 2017
[2] Cook Teets Ontario death registration (#005154, 6 December 1884); digital image, ( : accessed 15 July 2017), citing microfilm MS 935 Reel 37, Archives of Ontario, Toronto.
[3] Bullets, Brothels, & Blood on GoodReads

© 2017 Janet Iles Print

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