Tombstone Tuesday – January 18, 2021 – Silas Huntington Payne

Silas Huntington Payne was born on April 9, 1819 in Palmyra, Wayne County, New York. He was the son of Silas Huntington and Esther (Horton) Payne. Silas and Ester had four children; Julie Ann (1816), Elenore (1817), Silas (1819), Harriet Nancy (1821). Silas’s father died in 1820 before Harriet was born. Ester married John White. Esther and John White had two sons; Levi (1830) and William C (1831).

Silas Huntington Payne married Orpha Louise Butler. I do not find a marriage record but their first daughter was born in 1849 so I am estimating that it was in 1848 or 1849 and I’ll concentrate my search on those years. In the 1850 Federal Census, Silas Payne and Orpha are living in Thetford Township, Genesee County, Michigan. They have one daughter named Louise(1849). According to Findagrave, a daughter named Mary, was born on July 26, 1851 but died two months later on October 2, 1851.

By the time of the 1860 Federal Census, Silas and Orpha have living four children; Lydia, Huntington (1853), Harriet(1856), Nathan (1858). Notice that Louise has now become Lydia from the 1850 Census to the 1860. On her tombstone it states that her name was Roisa Lydia. In 1860, Silas and Orpha had a daughter named Julia Ann Payne. She died in 1868 so she was never recorded in any of the census. In 1862, their daughter Ida Jane was born. She died at birth.

In the 1870 Federal Census, they have four children who are living at home. They are William H (Huntington), Harriet (1856), Nathan (1858) and Ester (1867). In 1874, Cleora May Payne was born but she died on January 17,1879 so she was never found in a census either. In the 1880 Federal Census, Silas and Orpha have three children who remain at home, twenty-one year old, Nathan, twelve year old, Esther and ten year old Dora who must have been born after the 1870 census was recorded.

One hundred and twenty three years ago on January 18,1899, Silas Huntington died in Mt Morris, Michigan at the age of seventy-nine. According to his death certificate, he died of Bronchitis stemming from a cold which lasted for about three weeks. It appears that “Old Age” was added to to the explanation of cause of death. He was buried in Thetford Cemetery with six of his children who had died before him.

Rest in Peace,


Silas Huntington Payne is my 4th Great Uncle.

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