William Melrose, son of John and Mahetable (Scott) Melrose was born 25 July 1788 in New Jersey, probably Somerset County. By 12 Dec 1797 William, his parents and siblings were in Monongalia County (West) Virginia where his father purchased 565 acres of land on Decker’s Creek.


William had moved to Wood County (West) Virginia by 1806 when he was a member of a "Volunteer Independent Corps.” that was formed to protect the citizens from the Blennerhasset Island "conspirators".  He served is a Private in the War of 1812 and in the Black Hawk War of 1832.


It is believed that William married his first wife Eliza 1815-16 when he was deeded some land from his parent’s in Wood County. They were the parents of:


Leander Melrose

Born 10 April 1817 near Parkersburg, (West) Virginia.  Married 8 June 1837 to Rebecca Batson.                                              

Children: Christina, and Gibson.

Secondly married on 10 September 1846 to her sister, Elizabeth Batson.

Children: Elzira.

Died 8 April 1872.

Rebecca and Elizabeth were daughters of William and Nancy (Skinner) Batson.


In 1818 William and his young family moved to Edwards County, Illinois at the same time his brother Archibald moved here with his family. After his first wife's death, William married 1 April 1819 in Edwards County, Illinois to Elizabeth Tooley who was born about 1803 in Virginia.


William Melrose was a farmer by occupation and a Methodist by faith. When he and Elizabeth lived in Edwards County, they owned 160 acres of land one-quarter section east of the Mt. Zion Church. They lived in Edwards County for at least twelve years. Then in 1832 or 1833 they moved west across the county line into Leech Township, Wayne County.


William died 3 June l844 at Bayou Sara, West Feliciana Parish, Louisiana where he had apparently

Flat-boated to market at New Orleans from Illinois.


William and Elizabeth (Tooley) Melrose are the parents of ten children:



Born 1 November 1821. Married 23 February 1845 to Mary Ann Copeland. Died 16 May 1871.

Children: George, James, Eliza, Sylvanus, Stella, and Nathan.



Born about 1825, first wife Mary.

Children:  Laura and Charles.

Married secondly 23 April 1884 to Catherine Winters.

Children: Caroline, Mary, Emma, Franklin, William, Maggie and Marshall.

Catherine died about 1907.


William Jr.

Born 28 March 1826. Married 3 April 1845 to Sarah Sabina Knodell. Died 18 February 1879.

Children:  Mary, Maria, Martha, Lucy Minnie, Leander, Elizabeth, John Glaze, Rose Olive, William Cloud, Harriett "Hattie" and Helen.



Born 4 October 1829. Married 1 March 1848 to Samuel Martin Staley. Died 21 May 1857.

Children:  George, Ulla, Martin, Noah and Worley.



Born 1831. Married Ben Batson.  Died 1879.

Children: Laura, Rose Elizabeth, William, Benjamin, Charles, Emma and five who died in infancy.



Born 8 December 1833. Married first O1ive Scott (son Edwin) secondly married Mary Elizabeth Hallam on 20 December 1865. Died 19 January 1911.

Children: Chester, Haynie, Arthur, Pearl, Anna Maria, Mary Alice, Chloe A., Florence Katherine, John, Franklin, Margaret, Sarah, Samuel, Harriet Annette and Miriam Elizabeth.



Born 1836. Married James A. Robinson a Methodist minister.



Born 13 March 1839. Married 1 December 1858 to Samuel Martin Staley after her sisters (Harriet) death. Died 10 January 1869.

Children Ada and Justice.



Born 1841. Married 8 December 1864 to Margaret Frankland. Died July 1892.

Child: Ada Corrine.



Born 14 August 1843. Died 5 April 1864 in the Civil War.



“History of Edwards County, Illinois Past and Present”

Pg. 323-324




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