Discoveries: William Mercer Married Five Sisters!

This has to be a record.

It’s not uncommon for a young man to marry the girl next door – but in William Mercer’s case he married five of them, all sisters!

Omaha World-Herald (Omaha, Nebraska), 8 October 1899, page 28

He married the first of five of the Moffitt sisters, Jennie, when he was 19. After her death, he married in succession her sisters Ada, Catherine, Missouri, and then Anna. The reason for all these marriages? As the article explains:

“Each of his wives has died of…consumption.”

Nestled in the Raccoon Creek area of West Virginia, the Mercer and Moffitt farms were next to each other.

When he was asked “Why don’t you marry somebody besides a Moffitt, just for a change…?” William responded:

“If ye want a reason, it’s kind o’ handy to run over there an’ git a wife. I aint got much time to go chasing round in the mountains for one.”

Mercer’s marriages to the first four Moffitt sisters produced eight children. Are you related?

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