One Name Place Study: George Townsend of Columbus Ohio

Townsends of Franklin County OhioIt's once again time to investigate the Townsends of Franklin County, Ohio in an effort to find relatives of William James Townsend who was born around 1842 in Franklin County, Ohio.

The next individual listed 1880 US Census is George A Townsend. George indicates in this census that he was born around 1840 in New York. His parents are also listed as from New York and he says he was a merchant.

Other household members are Louisa Townsend born around 1840 in New York (parents also from New York).  They have a son Charles W Townsend, who is about 11 in their home. Charles was apparently born in New York as well.

At quick glance, this does not appear as close a relation as I would like to see. William was born in Ohio and several records place his parents from Maryland. George and William are around the same age so the different birth places would rule out the possibility of being brothers. Could they be distant relatives?

I continued to research George and found him in the 7th Ward of Columbus in the 1870 US Census.  The very difficult to read census page indicates that George, Louisa V, and Charles are from New York. George is listed as a tinner though an inscription of "Jour" is beside that entry but I'm not certain if it is a correction or second occupation.

I discovered a death entry for George in a ledger for Franklin County.

George Townsend Cause of Death
George Townsend Cause of Death,
I was unable to read the above cause of death which began 3 days before his passing. The occupation listing for George is also difficult to read. He was either a Tinner or a Trimmer. George died 3 Jul 1900 in Ohio and his body was transported back to New York for burial. He was buried 6 July 1900
in Homellsville Hornellsville, Steuben County (update courtesy of Elizabeth Handler! Thank you.). Call me crazy, but that seems awfully fast to transport the body after a death that far across country. However, Google Maps says a modern route distance of around 378 miles. Maybe that wasn't too far to travel in 1900 to bury a body.

A few interesting facts are that George's son Charles had died in 1891 and his body was also sent to New York for burial. I also discovered the names of George's parents: Watson L Townsend and Annabelle Crane.

The ties to New York  suggests that George is not a close relation of William. However, if I stumble across the names Watson or Annabelle Townsend, I might be able to establish distant cousin relations.

Previous Posts:
What I Know about William James Townsend

Additional Reading:
That's Everyone Now What?


  1. Death cause is "Enteritis" and the contributing factor is "Exhaustion."

  2. I agree with Linda on the cause of death. Also, note that the town in New York is Hornellsville (not Homellsville). It's in Steuben County, kind of near where my Townsends were (in Genesee County). I think it would be great if you could prove your connection to a branch of my Townsend family!

    1. Elizabeth, thanks for the comments and the clarification in New York. I keep hoping for a Townsend connection. However, perhaps this George is one of your long lost cousins? That would be cool as well.


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