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Below is a family biography included in The History of Miami County, Ohio published by W. H. Beers & Co. in 1880.  These biographies are valuable for genealogy research in discovering missing ancestors or filling in the details of a family tree. Family biographies often include far more information than can be found in a census record or obituary.  Details will vary with each biography but will often include the date and place of birth, parent names including mothers' maiden name, name of wife including maiden name, her parents' names, name of children (including spouses if married), former places of residence, occupation details, military service, church and social organization affiliations, and more.  There are often ancestry details included that cannot be found in any other type of genealogical record.

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WILLIAM RAYNER, farmer; P. O. Piqua; born in Sheffield, Eng., in 1817; is son of John and Elizabeth Rayner, who were born in England, but emigrated to this country in 1830, and located in Piqua; he (the father) was a minister in the M. E. Church before coming to this country, remained such during his life, and as a minister was very well known in Piqua and the surrounding neighborhood; he departed this life in 1871, being about 76 years of age, and his wife died in 1872. Mr. Rayner, our subject, came to this county, and located in Piqua about half a century ago, where he lived and followed his trade—that of a carpenter—till about twenty-eight years since, when he moved on to a farm, and has since followed farming; in 1864, he located upon the farm where he now resides; he has 60 acres of good land, 50 of which are in cultivation, with a good house, barn, and other buildings, comprising a very pleasant home, situated about two miles from Piqua. Mr. Rayner was united in marriage in 1843, with Rachel Scudder Valentine, daughter of Richard Valentine; by this union they had two children, viz., James B. and Anna E.; he lost his wife by death, in 1849. In 1850, married Catherine J. Barret, daughter of William and Maria Barret, both being born in Connecticut; by this union they had seven children, of whom five are living, viz., Maria (deceased), Mary, Emma (deceased), Luella D., Edwin B. and John A. Mr. Rayner has, since his marriage, located on and opened out three different farms right in the woods, doing most of the carpenter work in building on each of the three farms; he has been a constant worker, and by his industry and economy has made sufficient to live in comfort the rest of his life. He was formerly a Whig, politically, and then Free-Soil, and since, a stanch Republican, combined with Prohibition. Mr. Rayner is an active member of the M. E. Church, his membership dating back for nearly half a century; has been class-leader for many years, and local preacher for about thirty years.

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This family biography is one of 964 biographies included in The History of Miami County, Ohio published in 1880 by W. H. Beers & Co.  For the complete description, click here: Miami County, Ohio History and Genealogy

View additional Miami County, Ohio family biographies here: Miami County, Ohio Biographies

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