New Information on William Winneshiek

William Winneshiek’s grandson just sent me some interesting information about and a great photograph of his grandfather. Winneshiek reputedly came to an untimely end in an Elkton, MD hotel fire in 1950. His grandson of the same name located his death certificate. That document stated that he died in a September 15, 1949 fire in Minquadale, Delaware fire. Now that I know when and where he died—death certificates are usually fairly accurate about dates and places of death—I can look for old newspapers that might have articles about the fire. I’ll first start with Minquadale, if it had a newspaper then, then try New Castle, the nearby large town, because it probably covered the fire due to there being a death in it. After that, I’ll look at the Philadelphia papers because his home address was listed as Hotel Washington in Philadelphia on the death certificate. From there, I’ll try newspapers that covered Lebanon, Pennsylvania because he lived there for many years, and finally at the Carlisle papers because he was once a Carlisle Indian School student.

Follows is a newly-discovered photograph of the handsome William Winneshiek that may have been used for promotional purposes when he had his own band or played in Wheelock’s band.

Little by little, we’re learning more about William Winneshiek.



3 Responses to “New Information on William Winneshiek”

  1. Cathy Reiter Adams Says:

    Hi Tom, I have the original of this photograph. It was left to me by my grandfather whose sister married Bill.

    • tombenjey Says:

      That’s great, Cathy. What was your grandfather’s name?


      • Cathy Reiter Adams Says:

        Hi Tom, My grandfather was George Zerbe Reiter. Marie Zerbe (or Aunt Bea as she went by) was his aunt. Not his sister. Sorry, my mistake. Aunt Bea was married to Bill and the picture of Bill in his headdress was my grandfathers. My grandparents left the original to me when their estate was settled. I have another one of Bill with Aunt Bea and my grandmother Mabel Zerbe that was taken before they were married. I also have a few pictures of Aunt Bea. I provided copies of my photographs to my cousin Bill Winneshiek. I’m not sure if you remember, but I’ve spoken with you before. I would appreciate if you would cite proper credit for the photos that I have provided. If you would like to have a copy of the photo of Bill, Marie/Bea and Mabel, please let me know and I will be happy to provide you a copy.

        Cathy Reiter Adams

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