Susan B. Winters & The Trek of the Winters Family


Mrs. Susan B. Crane

Called To Her Reward

March 2, 1827 - July 19, 1919


The family emigrated to Texas and settled in Walker and Montgomery Counties.  Texas was then under Mexican rule, their first home was a log cabin.  She endured all the hardships of the early pioneers of Texas.  Their food consisted chiefly of cornbread, venison, wild turkey, wild honey, wild grapes, plums and berries.  The wild beasts made many depredations on their hogs and cattle.  Several villages of Indians were near their settlement.  The manufacture of cloth proved difficult as the cotton seed was picked by hand and Mrs. Crane spun many a yard on the old fashioned spinning wheel.  She recalled some years later than this when calico could be purchased from traveling pedlers for a cow and calf.

The subject of this sketch was born in Jefferson County, Tennessee, over ninety-two years ago.  

View a better photo of Susan Winters Crane submitted by Lori Richmann


At the outbreak of the Texas revolution Mrs. Crane's father and three brothers enlisted in Sam Houston's Army and she became acquainted with General Houston.

Mrs. Crane was on her way to Texas on "the night the stars fell."  She participated in the "runaway scrape" just before the battle of San Jacinto; and lived in Texas during five wars and under four different flags.  She was a citizen of this State for more than 85 years. 

On May 11th, 1844, Susan B. Winters became the bride of Green B. Crane.  Land was worth practically nothing and they purchased a section for a few dollars in merchandise.  In 1851 the family moved down on the San Marcos River, where the town of Prairie Lea now stands.  In 1852 they moved to Lavaca County near where Moulton now stands.  This was their home for over 60 years and Mr. Crane died here in 1901.  Four- (not legible and resumes with the next words) union.  Ten of whom survive as follows: John Crane, A. J. Crane of Sabina, J. R. Crane of Kingsville and Mesuamed, (not legible) Lyons, Bernice Dickson, E. J. Meriam of Shiner, Jane McVea of (not legible), Emeline Ware of (not legible), N.J. Stewart of San Antonio and Dorcas Thornton of San Marcos.  Mrs. Crane leaves forty-four grandchildren, thirtysix great-grandchildren and four great great grandchildren.  Mrs. Crane was the last of a family of thirteen children, seven lived to over eighty years of age and three lived to be over ninety.  With her passing a connecting link of pioneer days has been removed.  She was a remarkably well preserved woman, she enjoyed splendid health and was in possession of all her mental faculties at all times taking great interest in the events of the day and time and was a very interesting conversationalist.

She had been a member of the Church of Christ for sixty years.  It can be truly said of her that one of God's servants has gone to rest.  She rests from her labor and her works do follow her.  Her Christian influence is seen in the noble and consecrated lives of her children and if they continue faithful 'till death, they have the assurance of meeting the faithful mother gone on before.  Their loved ones sorrow not as those who have no hope but look forward to that blessed reunion.  Knowing of her devotion as a worshiper while here on earth, the faithful ones gathered around the open casket on last Sabbath morning and held devotional services, administering the Holy Sacrement.  Services were led by A. J. Dittmar, Sunday afternoon at 3 o'clock, Rev. T. F. Young of Runge conducting the funeral services, after which the procession moved to the family burying plot at the old Moulton cemetery where she was tenderly laid to rest.  The new made mound was banked high with lovely floral tributes.  The grandsons and nephews served as pallbearers as follows: Edgar and Elmo Merrem, John McVea, Albert Dittmar, J. F. May and John Crouch.  Life's sunset was indeed a golden one.  What a noble heritage she has left her children and children's children.

The children from a distance who were here at the funeral of Mrs. Susan B. Crane were Mrs. Andrew B. Crane of Sebinal, Beal Crane of Kingsville.  Mesdames Jane McBea of Gonzales, Octavia Stewart of San Antonio and Dorcas Thornton of San Marcos. 

          The grandchildren from other points were John McVea and Mr. and Mrs. E. L. Merrem of (not legible and begins with the next words) and son and Mr.. and Mrs. T. Dickson and family of Yoakum, Mr. and Mrs. Ernest Smith of Gonzales.  The grandchildren in Shiner were Mrs. W. O. Mewes, Mr. and Mrs. A. J. Dittmar, L. C., W. E., and Mabel Merrem.  Other relatives present were Mr. and Mrs. John Crouch of Alvin, Charles Crouch of Yoakum and Mrs. L. B. Allen and family of Hallettsville.  All of Mrs. Crane's children were present except one son, John Crane of Richland Springs and one daughter, Mrs. Ware of New, Mexico.

          Bernice Winters' Parent's Rhoda Creel Beall Winters and James Winters were born in N.C. came to Texas from Tenn. in 1834.  They settled on the San Jacinto River where the town of Waverly sprung up.  Their 13 children were William C., Orin L., Mary (Polly), Caroline, John Frelan, Nancy, James Washington, Sarah D., Benjamin Franklin, Lillie Ellen, Willis, Billington Taylor and Susan Bernice.  James Sr. fought in the war of 1812 and with Gen. Sam Houston.  His three sons W. C., J. F., J.W., fought in the Battle of San Jacinto while he and his son B.F. hauled supplies.  Sgt. W.C. was wounded.  In 1901 J. W. served on a commission of veterans to designate important locations on the Battle Ground.  In 1842 J. W. and B. F. went on the Summerville Expedition.  James M., son of W.C. was killed by Indians in 1861. 

          The Winters Memorial Assn. has been formed to preserve the family and the Republic of Texas history.  The old family cemetery on F.M. Rd. # 2778 between Cold Springs and New Waverly in Walker Co. has been restored and made into a WINTERS MEMORIAL PARK to honor James, Rhoda and their 13 children.  Markers will recite the part the Winters family played in early Texas history.  The following cemeteries will be marked along the Winters Trek.  Winters Memorial Prk where James, Sr., J. F., Nancy, Willis and Caroline are buried; Delhi where Orin is buried; Moore, B. T.; Oakville, Rhoda; Lebanon, Lillie Ellen; and Old Moulton where Susan Bernice and Sarah D. are buried; the Longview cemetery where W. C. and B. F. are buried and also at Big Foot in the Brumitt Cemetery where J. W. is buried. 

           THE TREK OF THE WINTERS FAMILY extended from Old Waverly to Big Foot in Frio Co. and they branched out from there to every part of the state.  Mrs. Harry Zavisch, Jr. WMA Secy., Tilden, Tex. and Mrs. J J. Head, Rt 4 Box 363 Huntsville, Tex. are contacting descendants of this family.  Mrs. Head is Pres.; Mr. Head, Treas; Mr. Zavisch, Vice Pres.  Plans are being made to hold a family reunion at the Park in 1968.  Dedication ceremonies will be held as Markers are erected.  The Winters Trek has been sent to the Texas Travel Trails Assn., as a week-end tour or Texas Travel Trail.  It passed through the Scenic Hill Country, Brush Country and Pines of East Texas and many historic towns.  Join your family Association by sending your contribution to J. J. Head, Huntsville.  Help preserve the history of your family and Texas. 

By Mrs. Harry Zavisch, Jr. 

Clipping loaned by Mrs. Theo Riggs, Pearsall, Tex. descendant of Orin L.



The Winters Trek


Trail Of The Sons Of San Jacinto


A vacation or week-end travel tour from the picturesque "Big Thicket" with it's towering pines through the rugged beauty of the "L. B. J." country to the scenic Flora of the "Brush and Cacti" area.  It extends from Old Waverly in Walker County to Big Foot in Frio County.

          The trail was blazed by the Winters Family who came to Texas from Tennessee in 1834 and settled between the East and West Forks of the San Jacinto River, where on F. M. Rd. #2778 the Winters Memorial Park has been established to honor James Winters, Sr., his wife, Rhoda Creel Beall, and their 13 children.  Their graves are marked in the park, Delhi, Moore, Big Foot, Oakville, near-by Lebanan and Old Moulton.  Three sons were in the Battle of San Jacinto while the father and younger son hauled supplies for the soldiers.  Two went on the Somervell Expedtion, most took part in Indian and Bandit Battles and some fought in the Civil War.

          Historic buildings, cemeteries and other sites are preserved and marked along this route while large and small museums tell the story of the colorful past.  Tourist attractions and most types of recreation can be enjoyed along the way.

Presented to the Texas Travel Trails Association in 1967 by:

Mrs. Harry Zavisch, Jr. Chairman

McMullen County Historical Survey

Committee, Member, Clara Driscoll

Chapter, Daughtes of the Republic

of Texas, Secretary, Wintes

Memorial Association.

(25 County Area of Texas)



Winters Trek Map

The town names on this map did not scan very well, so I have added the names of towns where the graves are located and the names of some of the larger towns to help get an idea of where they are located.  You may need to get a Texas map to get a better view and figure out the rest of the town names.  If you were going to take this trek you would most certainly need a new Texas map as some of the roads have changed since this map was apparently made in 1967.


Moulton Cemetery Association Deed made to John Willis Crouch on June 19, 1919 regarding cemetery lots in Old Moulton Cemetery.  John Willis Crouch is the son of Sarah Winters Crouch.

  Cemetery Photo - S. B. Moore Family Lot, Moulton, Texas.   Includes graves of Jackson Crouch and Sarah (Sallie) Winters Crouch

Dedication of Winters Memorial Park program from September 29, 1968 held in New Waverly, Texas.

Orrin Lemon Winters Log House Dedication Program - Originally a two-room cabin, built about 1853 near Lavaca River (2 miles northeast) by Orrin L. Winters (1811-1902).   A native of Tennessee, he lived in the structure until 1873.   About 1902, the oak log cabin was torn down by Adam Schultz, and used to construct a barn and a blacksmith shop.   The blacksmith shop later burned, and in 1973, the barn was dismantled, moved here, and restored as a cabin, to represent the pioneer heritage of Lavaca County. - Recorded Texas Historic Marker Landmark - 1974. 

A Big Thank You goes to Lori Richman for submitting the Cemetery Deed, Cemetery Photo, Winters Memorial Park Program, Orrin Lemon Winters Log House Program and the photo of Susan B. Crane.


Renee's note: The Article about Susan B. Crane was an obituary that was printed in a newspaper.  I do not own the original and do not know what paper this was printed in, but apparently it was written just after Susan's death in 1919. This obituary was attached to another article about the Trek Of The Winters Family that was written abt. 1968 acording to the article.  I don't know where this article came from either, but was a part of the original genealogy work my Aunt Jewel Tilley Walker had collected before her death in 1972.

I am working on the Family of Benjamin Franklin Winters & Sylvania Adeline Cude.  Benjamin was a brother to Susan B. Winters Crain.  I have family ties to the Dunn, Moore, Tope, & White Surnames that married some of the children of Benjamin & Sylvania.  These families are all a part of my Yarbrough family which is my major genealogy research.


This webpage is part of Renee's Family Genealogy

This page was last updated on August 16, 2001