John Martin, Jr., the fourth child of John and Sarah (Stanley) Martin, was born in Athens County, Ohio, on 22 January 1816 and died 24 November 1895 in Douglas County, Illinois, at the age of 79 years, 10 months, and 2 days.
A biographical sketch of John's son Levi, published in 1910, also includes a brief note about John, his first wife Mary Ann, and his father John Sr. According to the bio, Levi was "a son of John Martin, born in Athens County, Ohio, in 1816, and died in Camargo Township in 1895. His wife bore the maiden name of Mary Wheeler, who was also born in Athens County [well no, probably in Campbell County, Kentucky], in 1817, and died in Camargo Township in 1863. They were married in their native county in 1836 [sic], and in the fall of that year started for Illinois, driving direct to Coles County and locating on government land in the present Camargo Township, the father working for Washington Boyce during the winter to earn the forty dollars necessary to pay for the forty acres on which he had settled and on which he built a log house. His father, John Martin, Sr., had brought his family to this new locality in the spring of 1836, and there entered 240 acres of land on which he died five [ten!] years later. From time to time the younger John Martin added to the holdings owned by him, until at one time he was the possessor of 200 acres."
John Martin, Jr., married three times:
John married, first, Mary Ann Wheeler in Athens County, Ohio, on 04 July 1837. She was born 10 May 1817 in Kentucky (probably Campbell County), and died on 3 January 1862 in Douglas County, IL. She was the daughter of Basil and Susannah (Woodyard) Wheeler. Twelve children were born to John and Mary Ann (three of whom died in infancy):
John married, second, Lavina Plowman on 1 June 1864. She was born 17 March 1843, the daughter of James and Mary (Long) Plowman, and died 16 May 1877. Her birth, marriage, and death all occurred in Douglas County, IL. Eight children were born to John and Lavina:
John married, third, Mrs. Mary A. (Dobbs) Howard on 27 June 1878. She was born 30 August 1846, in Illinois, and died 12 December 1882 in Douglas County. She was the daughter of Nathan and Julia Ann (Berry) Dobbs but may have been an adopted daughter, as she is listed in the Dobbs's household (in Cumberland County, IL) in the 1860 census but not in the 1850 census, when she would have been 4 years old. Mary had six children resulting from her previous marriage to Samuel Howard. Two children were born to John and Mary:
Obviously, I had to have a lot of information about John Jr. just to identify his three wives and 22 children. Nevertheless, there are some surprising mysteries in this branch of the family, such as what became of John III after his second wife died, and why his children ended up being raised by relatives. Similar mysteries surround the eventual fates of Joseph and Laura. If you can provide any further details about the lives of John, his children, or their descendants, please contact me at the address shown in the image below: