Name: Elizabeth BALDWIN
Given Name: Elizabeth
Birth: 12 FEB 1832 in Indiana
Note: the father of Elizabeth Baldwin is established from the fact that in the 1880 census, she is listed in the household of her son Hillard Denson Wrattin. In the household, she is listed as "mother" of Hillard Denson Wrattin; while in the same household is listed Thomas Baldwin, grandfather of Hillard Denson Wrattin.
Death: 18 SEP 1893 3
Burial: Ebenezer Cemetery, Harrison Township, Daviess County, Indiana 4
As the widow of a Civil War soldier who died in action, Elizabeth Wratten commenced drawing a pension shortly after her husbands death. She was known to be energetic and business minded. She was a money lender and was said to receive considerable income from this activity (Daviess county history (Myers), 1:226).
Tradition is that she kept large sums of money hidden at home, and it was generally known that she was relatively wealthy (ibid).
In 1893, the home in which she lived was known as the old Thomas Baldwin place and Elizabeth was the owner. The house was an old fashioned three room half log structure covered with weather boards. Included in the household was her son's family (ibid).
On the night of 18 September 1893, Elizabeth Wratten and the five members of her son's family were asleep when James E. Stone forced his way into the home and murdered the entire family of six with a corn knife. He searched for the money box, but failed to find it. He left, leaving enough evidence to later help prove his guilt (ibid, 1:227).
Murderer James E. Stone is a first cousin, one generation removed, of Elizabeth Wratten. Their common ancestor is Elias Stone.
The murders received nationwide attention in the newspapers of the day (ibid, 1:226).
Indeed, The Rocky Mountain News of Denver, Colorado, carried the initial report on page one of its 20 September 1893 issue. The story reads as follows, in its entirety:
Horrible Butchery. An Entire Family of Six Murdered in Cold Blood.
WASHINGTON, Ind., Sept. 19 - Last night in Harrison township, nine miles from this city, an entire family of six persons were butchered with hatchets. The family consisted of Denson Wratten, his mother, wife and three children. The eldest of the children, a girl of 12, is still living, although unconscious, and with her head cruelly gashed.
Denson Wratten was a farmer, 35 years old, a good citizen in moderate circumstances. His good mother lived with the family and drew a pension. She did not bank her money and was supposed to keep several hundred dollars about her. This money was doubtless the motive for the murders. The house is a log one, a story and a half high, and has a long kitchen annex. The murderers entered by a window, breaking in the sash, and there was evidence of a fierce struggle. Wratten was sick with typhoid fever and incapable of resistance. The old lady was found upon the floor, cut terribly about the head and both hands cut off at the wrists. All were found dead upon the floor except the baby, 3 years old, which was killed in bed.
In the 1870 census, the widowed Elizabeth Ratten and her two children are shown in the family of her father, Thomas Baldwin (1870, Indiana, Daviess county, Harrision township, page 206, dwelling 102).
In 1880, her son Denson Wrattin is listed as head of the house, and she is listed as Elizabeth Wrattin in her son's household, along with her daughter and father (1880, same location, page 493, dwelling 117).
Father: Thomas BALDWIN b: 07 AUG 1807 in South Carolina
Mother: Ailcy STONE b: 13 MAY 1803 in South Carolina
Samuel RATTON b: 09 JUN 1829 in Ohio
23 APR 1857
in Daviess County, Indiana 6
- Hillard Denson WRATTEN b: 23 MAR 1858 in Daviess County, Indiana
- Ailcy Jane WRATTEN b: 07 MAY 1860 in Daviess County, Indiana
- Title: U.S. Census schedules
- Title: Joyce Burris Gant to John Clement, correspondence
Page: 7 Jul 2003
- Title: Ailcy Stone and Thomas Baldwin Descendants. A transcript compiled from data gathered by John Youngblood Stone; prepared 10 February 2003 and provided by Myrna (McWilliams) Stone to the compiler. John Youngblood Stone 1929-2000 gathered considerable Stone family data but died before he could publish
Page: p. 1
- Title: Cemeteries of Daviess County, Indiana, six volumes
Author: Waggoner, Barbara Sims
Publication: Waggoner, Elnora, Indiana, 1986-1993
- Title: Daviess County,Indiana : history
Author: Myers, L. Rex
Publication: Turner Publishing Company, Paducah, Kentucky, 1988-1991, 2 volumes
- Title: Indiana Marriage Collection, 1800-1941, database online http:\\ancestry.com (Provo, Utah : 2005)
Page: accessed 30 Jan 2003, citing book 1, p. 540