The death of Etna Woodard Daniel.

Wilson Daily Times, 8 April 1916.

A brief article reporting the mysterious death of Etna Daniel is chock-full of detail, not all of it accurate. Ben Woodard was a well-known root doctor in Wilson County. Daniel was his step-daughter though, not his daughter. By 1916, wealthy agribusinessman Graham Woodard lived in his town, but his farm was on or near ancestral Woodard land in the White Oak Swamp area. “Darden’s shop” was Charles H. Darden‘s undertaking business.


In the 1870 census of Black Creek township, Wilson County: farm laborer Benj’n Woodard, 32, wife Harriet, 31, and children Edna, 13, Frederick, 9, and Venah, 6.

On 17 August 1876, Harry Daniels, 27, married Etna Woodard, 20, at B. Woodard’s, Wilson County.

In the 1880 census of Black Creek township, Wilson County: Harry Daniel, 30, and wife Etna, 22.

In the 1900 census of Little Rock, Pulaski County, Arkansas: railroad laborer Harry Daniels, 50; wife Edna, 35; and boarder James Bynum, 21, grocery clerk. [Is this the same couple? If so, when did they, or just Etna, return to Wilson County?]

Per her death certificate, Eatna Daniel died 7 or 8 April 1916 in Wilson. She was 60 years old; was born in Wilson to Isaac Barnes and Harrett Aycock; “fell dead on country road — cause unknown”; and buried in Black Creek. Ben Woodard was informant. [Per the information Woodard supplied, Etna Daniel was not his daughter by his first wife, rather she was his step-daughter.]

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