William Nathan McDowell

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About William Nathan McDowell

William Nathan McDowell (1882-1966) aka Bill McDowell; House Painter, Carpenter and Handyman (b. May 18, 1882, Westbrookville, Sullivan County, New York, 12785, USA - d. May 06, 1966, Liberty, Sullivan County, New York, 12754, USA) Social Security Number 086145369.


Bill was born in 1881 to Nathan Richard McDowell (1854-1925); and Chalania Alvira Van Keuren (1860-1934).


His siblings include: Ziby Francis McDowell (1880-?) who married Angeline Josephine Millspaugh (1888-1946); Oscar Olander McDowell (1883-1965) who married Elsie Evelyn Peterson (1886-1974); Viola Catherine McDowell (1884-1960) who married Archibald Reed Page II (1876-1945); Orrin Lafayette McDowell (1887-1947) who married Victoria Hubbard (1884-1950); Olive Affoyett McDowell (1887) who died as an infant; Edward Levi McDowell (1890-1984) who married Helen E. Sarine (1896-1969); Chalania Alvira McDowell (1892-1966) who married Harry M. McBride I (1886-1959); Harry Chester McDowell (1896-c1900) who may have died as an infant or youth; Vincent Milton McDowell (1896-1972) who married Margaret Amanda Libolt (1905-1991); Asa Auston McDowell (1899-1958) who married Merle McCarter (1903-2001); and Stanley McDowell (1906-1965) who married Jeanette McLean (1907-1987).

First Marriage:

On October 07, 1903 Bill married Mary F. Benedict (1887-1965) and they had one child: Charles William McDowell (1907-1975). They then divorced and Mary married Frederick Eugene Skinner, a cattle dealer from Westbrookville. Frederick was the son of James Skinner and Lucinda Jane Tompkin. Mary was the daughter of Jonathan Benedict (1850-1879) and Nancy L. Culver (1850-1924).

Second Marriage:

Bill then married Margaret Piatt (1879-1952) aka Mae Piatt. Margaret was the daughter of William Lewis Piatt (1834-1918) and Phoebe Hubbard (1853-1910).

Memories of William McDowell:

According to Elmer Jay McDowell (1941- ): "Bill lived in the upstairs apartment of a 2 story house. There always seemed to be paint cans and painting paraphernalia in the hallway. He would sometimes play a violin in a style for square dancing. He had two, one was larger and must have been a viola. He also would play a pump organ that was in the living room. He didn't seem to think too much of kids but could be persuaded to 'show off'. He was a portly man with a cookie duster mustache. My dad always said he was a lady's man, and I remember him always having a girl friend in his older age. He was living alone in a mountain home in his 83rd year when he cut his foot with an ax while splitting wood. In typical McDowell fashion, he didn't get medical treatment, got gangrene, had first one and then the other leg amputated, and died as a result".

Richard Potts wrote on on June 05, 2006: "[I am] Viola McDowell Page's grandson. I believe I have some second-hand knowledge about Bill McDowell that might be of interest to you. Bill's first marriage to Mary Benedict did not end with her death. They were divorced. She then married Fred Skinner a cattle dealer from Westbrookville. I always knew her as Aunt Mame as she was my grandfather's (Archibald R. Page) cousin. My grandmother told my sister Roberta that she, my grandmother, could understand Mame divorcing Bill but felt that she should never have abandoned their son when she left Bill. I only remember meeting Bill McDowell once. When I was 9 or 10 (1953-1954) I stayed with my Grandmother for a week or two in the summer. Bill dropped by to visit. My memories of that are not very clear but the impression of the visit meshes well with Elmer's impression of Bill's attitude toward kids. (Asa, 'Uncle Ace' dropped by to visit on another day and took me fishing at Wolf Lake) My mother told me that Bill was his mother's favorite. So when Oscar, age 12 or so the story goes, was working and Bill was not she used Oscar's pay one week to buy Bill shoes. Oscar did not think that was fair so 'in typical McDowell fashion' left home. His family reputedly did not hear from him for 7 or 8 years. When they did he was a carpenter on Long Island."

Researched and written by Richard Arthur Norton (1958- ) for Findagrave starting on July 16, 2003.


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William Nathan McDowell's Timeline

Age 84