Biography of Capt. William J. Laundy
Ottawa & Sandusky Counties, OH Biographies





CAPTAIN WILLIAM J. LAUNDY, who now lives a quiet and peaceful life on his well improved farm near Green Spring, Sandusky county, after a thoroughly successful and prosperous career on the great inland lakes, is by birth an Englishman; but it would be difficult to find in this country a native born citizen more intensly patriotic than he. His ancestry were liberty loving people, and Captain Laundy reveres the stars and stripes as the only flag to which he now owes any allegiance.

He was born in the county of Essex, England, April 26, 1842, and is a son of Henry and Sarah Ann (Fletcher) Laundy, people of Cambridgeshire, England, the former of whom was a gardener for Sir John Young. Grandmother Laundy was a preacher in the Friends Church in England, and in her old age wrote many letters to her descendants in America. The father of Henry Laundy was a religious refugee in England from Germany. Sarah Ann Fletcher, wife of Henry Laundy, was an Episcopalian. When William J. was a small child his parents emigrated to Canada from England in a sailing vessel, the trip consuming eleven weeks. They located on the St. Lawrence river, nine miles below Kingston, thence, in 1861, removing to Huron county, Ontario, where they died at the ages of eightytwo and eighty four respectively, eight days apart. Henry Laundy was an orthodox Quaker, a strong anti slavery man, and an active "agent" for the "underground railway."

At the age of about twenty William J. crossed the border to the United States for the express purpose of taking up arms in behalf of its national preservation. He expected to join his brother Fletcher, who was a member of an independent company of Illinois cavalry; but before he reached him Fletcher had lost his health in military service, and strongly dissuaded William from enlisting. The latter, therefore, went to Milwaukee, where, in 1863, he went on the lakes. He commenced as a watchman, and worked up rapidly to the position of master, or captain, in which capacity he plied many years between Buffalo and Chicago, being, all told, some twenty three years on the lakes. In 1879 he had purchased his present farm, located close to Green Spring, Sandusky county, and when, in 1883, he resigned his captaincy, he came to his fertile acres, and has been here ever since.

In 1872 Capt. Laundy was married to Miss Deborah A. Rouse, who was born in Ottawa county, Ohio, December 20, 1851, youngest daughter of George Lathrop and Mary (Knapp) Rouse, both of old New England stock, the former born in New York State September 18, 1809, the latter on September 13, 1818. They were married in Danbury township, Ottawa Co., Ohio, April 27, 1838, andwere early pioneers of that county. Subsequently they removed into the village of Marblehead, where Mr. Rouse was for many years engaged in general merchandising, and where he to some degree followed his trade of ship carpenter. He died May 26, 1853, and his widow subsequently married Robert Killey; she still lives at Marblehead. George L. and Mary Rouse were the parents of eight children, as follows: Sabra, born January 8, 1839, married Dominick Barnholtzer, and died July 22, 1895; Laura, born August 3, 1841, wife of John Boschen; Lucretia, born January ro, 1843, married James Fletcher, and died December 11, 1856; Betsy, born September 24, 1844, married T. Sexton, and died March 20, 1864; George Lathrop, born June 17, 1846, lives near Grand Island, Neb.; Ida, born April 24, 1848, died unmarried, May 26, 1894; Joseph, born July 30, 1850, died February 24, 1864; and Deborah; Robert and Mary Killey had three children, of whom Frances, born December 15, and now the wife of Frederick Daily, survives.

To William J. and Deborah Laundy three children were born, their names and dates of birth being as follows: Fannie, September 13, 1882; Mary, August 1, 1888; Luff, August 19, 1893. Capt. Laundy is a man of extensive information and broad and liberal views. He has been a great traveler, and his wide experience in life has left upon his receptive mind deep impressions, thoroughly assimilated by his reflective faculties. His wife is a bright, sensible business woman, and the devoted couple have the universal esteem of the community in which they live.

From:
Commemorative Biograohical Record
of the Counties of
Sandusky and Ottawa, Ohio
J. H. Beers & Co. 1896


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