Samuel G. Wotring (1840-1924)


Source: Portraits and Biographies of the Governors of Michigan, and of the Presidents
by Chapman Bros., 1885
Pages 720-721

SAMUEL G. WOTRING is an intelligent and respected farmer of Ogden Township, and is the scion of a long line of honorable ancestry. He was born in West Union, now Aurora, Preston Co., W. Va., May 4, 1840. He has the record of his family back to his great-grandfather, Abram Wotring, who, it is thought, was born in Germany, but in early life sought a new home in the United States. He first settled in Maryland and spent many years there, but subsequently removed to Preston County, in the western part of Virginia, and was one of the pioneers of that place. He took up a large tract of land there, which is still owned by his descendants. He was a tanner by trade, and erecting a tannery, carried on the business and superintended his farm, residing there till his death.

The grandfather of our subject, who bore his father's name, went with his parents from Maryland to Preston County, and after his father's death inherited the old homestead and carried on the two occupations, tanning and farming, until his death. His son, also Abram Wotring, the father of our subject, was born in March, 1810, and reared on this same farm in West Virginia. He learned the trade of a blacksmith, and followed it till 1842 in his native town, then removed to Taylor County, where he bought a farm on which he erected a shop, and continued his previous occupation of blacksmithing until too old for such laborious, though profitable work; he still lives there, aged seventy-seven years. He was the founder of the village of Aurora, which is situated on a part of the tract of land his grandfather had taken up. He platted it and laid out the town, naming it West Union, but the name was afterward changed to Aurora. The mother of our subject, whose maiden name was Ruth Hood, was a native of Preston County, and is also living at an advanced age. Her father, Julius Hood, was born in Virginia, where he was also reared and married, but in the early settlement of Ohio he went to that State to take up land, making the journey from Virginia on foot, and while there was taken sick and died.

Samuel G. Wotring was the fourth child in order of birth of a family of nine children, six of whom are now living. He attended school during his youth, and after that learned the trade of blacksmithing of his father. When the cry of Rebellion arose and there came a requisition for troops to suppress it, he enlisted May 1, 1861, in Company B, 2d Virginia Infantry, and served through the entire war, being honorably discharged in July, 1865. The company served as infantry until June, 1863, then mounted and became the 5th Virginia Cavalry. He participated in the many engagements of his regiment, the most important of which were: Laurel Hill, Carrack's Ford, Schaefer Mountain and Monterey, McDowell Cross Keys, Cedar Mountain, Second Bull Run, Kelley's Ford, Waterloo Bridge, Gainesville, Sulphur Springs, Rocky Gap and Droop Mountain. After being mounted he was constantly engaged in skirmishing and fighting. At the close of the war he returned home, and resumed his trade in Grafton, living there till 1872, when he came to Ogden Township, and bought eighty acres of land on section 15, on which he resided till 187(n when he traded it for the farm he now owns and occupies. He carried on blacksmithing in connection with farming till 1887, when on account of trouble arising from a wound received while shoeing a government mule, from the effects of which he has never recovered, he was obliged to abandon his trade, and now devotes his attention entirely to his farm.

January 18, 1866, Mr. Wotring was united in marriage with Miss Mary Smell, a native of Taylor County, W. Va., where she was born Sept. 18, 1843. She is a daughter of George and Sarah (Siggons) Smell, both natives of Virginia. Mr. and Mrs. Wotring have six children living: George L., James W., Sarah E., Edna E., Eugene F. and Harry L. Perry, their fifth child, died in infancy.

Mr. Wotring was a brave soldier, and is an equally good citizen, still as much interested in his country's welfare as when he took up arms in her defense. In politics he is a Republican, and he is a charter member of the David Becker Post, G. A. R.

Additional Information

Find A Grave Memorial - Samuel G. Wotring



1860 Census, Taylor County (W)Va
PO: Pruntytown, Page No. 97
Lines 15-21, Enum-Dwelling #713, Enum-Family #685
WOTRING, A. S. 50, Blacksmith, $0/$400, Va
", Ruth, 47, Va
", Mary J. 24, Va
", Eugenius 21, Farmer, Va
", S. G. 20, Blacksmith, Va, attended school during the year
", W. A. 16, Farm Laborer, Va, attended school during the year
", John H. 13, Va, attended school during the year

1870 Census, Taylor County WV
Haymond Township, PO: Pruntytown, Page No. 23
Lines 10-14, Enum-Dwelling #162, Enum-Family #162
WOTRING, Saml G, 29, Blacksmith, $1250/$1000, Va
", Mary, 26, Keeping House, Va
children: George 2, James 3/12, both born in WV
LUZADDER, Alice, 20, Domestic Servt, Va

1880 Census, Lenawee County, Michigan
Ogden Township, ED:162, Page No. 22
Lines 29-34, Enum-Dwelling #218, Enum-Family #224
WOTRING, Samuel, 40, Farmer, Va-Va-Va
", Mary, 37, Wife, Keeping House, Va-Va-Va
", Luther, 12, Son, Va-Va-Va
", James, 10, Son, Va-Va-Va
", Elizabeth, 7, Dau, Mich-Va-Va
", Edna Ethel, 1, Dau, Mich-Va-Va

1900 Census, Lenawee County, Michigan
Ogden, ED:53, Sheet 5A
WOTRING, Sam'l (head) May-1841, 59, Wid'r, WV-WV-WV, Farmer
", George (son) Jun-1868, 31, WV-WV-WV, Farm-Laborer
", Eugene F (son) Feb-1881, 19, MI-WV-WV
FINT, Clara (Servant) Apr-1869, 31, WV-WV-WV


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