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Walter W. Williams of Yungan

Updated on December 31, 2017

Medical missionary working with Methodist Mission hailed from Iowa

Walter Webster Williams (1868-1939) was a medical doctor and missionary who lived 16 years in China, from 1901 to 1917, as a missionary with the American Methodist Mission. He was a Iowa native who was already 33 years old when first appointed to missionary service in China. Mention can be found of his presence in the cities of Yung-ang and Kucheng. Significant life events that occurred during his missionary service in China included marriage in 1910 to a teacher, Grace Bell Travis, and the birth of their first child, a daughter, Evelyn Edna, in 1912. Evelyn died in China in 1917, at age four, several months before the family returned permanently to the U.S. The second child, a son, Harold Webster Williams, born in 1914, apparently arrived during a furlough in the United States because his birthplace is listed as St. Louis, Missouri. A third son, Chester Travis Williams was born in December of 1917 in Los Angeles, Calif. The Williams family had arrived at this California port city aboard the S.S. Korea Maru only five weeks earlier. The records do not reveal how long the Williams family tarried in California before returning to their home state of Iowa but the census documents from 1920 going forward show the Williams family putting down roots in their home state of Iowa.

1896

Minutes of the Annual Conferences of the Methodist Episcopal Church

Iowa Conference, held in Knoxville, Iowa, Sep. 9-14, 1896.

Page 359: Question 4: Who have been Received on Trial? (a? in Studies of First Year.

J.L.T. Lawson, Walter W. Williams, G.H. Hanswalt, Alexander McBlaine, John H. Taylor, Fred B. Tucker, D.R. Martin.

1900

Gospel in All Lands, December 1900.

Missionary Society of the Methodist Episcopal Church

page 573The return to China of Rev. W.C. Longden, and the outgoing to China of Rev. F.G. Henke, M.R. Charles, M.D., Rev. Harry R. Caldwell, Rev. Walter W. Williams, and Miss Kate E. Kauffman were authorized. The return of Dr. J.H. McCartney to China was authorized when Bishop Moore should asked for him.

1903

No. 628, Issued August 10, 1903.

U.S. Passport Application — Native

I, Walter W. Williams, a native and loyal citizen of the United States, hereby apply to the Legation of the United States at Pekin for a passport for myself.

I solemnly affirm that I was born at Muscatine, in the State of Iowa, on or about the 8 day of December, 1868; that my father is a native born citizen of the United States; that I am domiciled in the United States, my permanent residence being at Grand View, in the State of Iowa, where I follow the occupation of clergyman; that I left the United States on the 19 day of February, 1901, and am now temporarily sojourning at Ing-chung, Fookien Province; and that I desire the passport for the purpose of travel in Kiang-si, Igan-huit, Kiang-su.

Oath of Alegiance: Further, I do solemnly swear that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; and that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion: So help me God.

(Signature of Applicant:) Walter W. Williams

Consulate of the United States at Fuchan, China.

Sworn to before me, this 27 day of July, 1903.

Samuel L. Gracey, Consul.

Identification:

I hereby certify that I know the above-named Walter W. Williams personally, and know him to be a native-born citizen of the United States, and that the facts stated in his affidavit are true to the best of my knowledge and belief.

Samuel L. Gracey, N.S. Consul, Fuchan, China.

1909

Bulletin of Foreign Plant Introductions

No. 15. April 7 to 27, 1909

Page 7: CHINA, Ing-ang. Walter W. Williams, March 6. Sends samples of several varieties of soy beans from the Min River, 200 miles west of Foochow. Suggests the use of the China bamboo for paper.

1910

  • Woman's Missionary Friend, June 1910.

    Page 207: Miss Grace B. Travis of Foochow was married to Rev. Walter W. Williams, M.D., of Kucheng, China, on February 25, at Tai Main, the missionaries' home in Foochow. The ceremony was performed by Rev. W.A. Main, assisted by the American consul, Dr. S.L. Gracey. Miss Travis was located at Kucheng during her first year in China, and her return there with her husband is eagerly anticipated by the missionaries as well as by her Chinese friends.

  • The Kingston (New York) Daily Freeman, Volume 38, June 4 1910, Page 6

    Society Notes

    Announcement has been received of the marriage of Miss Grace B. Travis, daughter of the late Rev. C. H. Travis, to the Rev. Walter W. Williams. M.D. at Tal Maiu, Tooehow. China, February 25, 1910. Miss Travis has been a missionary in China.

1911 - Directory of Missionaries

from "Official Minutes: Foochow Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church"

1911

  • September 14, 1911.

    The Christian Advocate

    Page 1234: Walter W. Williams, Kutien, M.D., Vanderbilt University.

1916

Colon Hygiene

by J.H. Kellogg, M.D., LL.D., 1916

Colon Hygiene, Bowel Habits of Uncivilized Men

"Brown sugar is the laxative usually relied upon." - Walter W. Williams, Yung-an Fookin Pwo., China.

1917

  • Consular No. 72, Department No. 6573

    Application for Registration - Native Citizen

    I, Walter W. Williams, hereby apply to the Consulate of the United States at Foochow, China, for registration as an American citizen.

    I was born at Muscatine, Iowa, on December 8, 1868.

    My father, Joseph J. Williams, was born in Butler Co., Ohio, 1839.

    I last left the United States on August 14, 1914, arriving at Yungan, Fukien, China, on January 23, 1915, where I am now residing for the purpose of medical missionary work on behalf of American M.E. Mission.

    I have resided outside the United States at the following places for the following periods: Foochow consular district (Yung Chun), from April 1901 to 1905; after a year of furlough, Yung Chun, from 1906 to 1910; Kutien, from 1910 to 1912; since that and going away for one furlough.

    My legal domicile is in Grand View, Iowa, my permanent residence being at Grand View, Iowa; my temporary local address is Yungan, Fukien, China.

    I desire to remain a citizen of the United States and intend to return thereto permanently to reside and perform the duties of citizenship within ? years, or when my term of service in China expires.

    I do not pay the American Income Tax.

    I last applied for registration at the Consulate of the United States at Foochow, China, on May 1, 1916.

    I am married to Grace T. Williams, who was born at North Walton, N.Y., on Sept. 8, 1874, and is now residing at Yungan, Fukien, China.

    I have the following children by this marriage: Harold Webster Williams, born January 14, 1914, at St. Louis, Mo., presently residing at Yungan; Evelyn Edna Williams, born Sept. 3, 1912, at Foochow, deceased Feb. 13, 1917.

    Oath of Alegiance: Further, I do solemnly swear that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; and that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion: So help me God.

    (Signature of Applicant:) Walter W. Williams

    Identification

    I hereby certify that I am a native citizen of the United States, that I have known the above-named Walter W. Williams personally for ? years and that the facts stated in the foregoing application for registration are true to the best of my knowledge and belief. I am the holder of passport No. 3189, of August 14, 1916, issued by Department of State.

    I am registered at the American Consulate at Foochow, China.

    (Signature of witness:) B.H. Paddock, Yenping, Fukien, China.

    Identifying documents: Department passport.

    The applicant requests that the following person be notified in the event of his death or disability: Mr. J.J. Williams (or H.R. W. his son), Grand View, Louisa Co., Iowa.

  • Foochow, China. Yungan, Fukien. March 20, 1917

    I, the undersigned, do hereby Certify and Affirm that the matters stated in my Application for Registration are true, and I do hereby consent that this statement shall in all respects, be held and treated as if I had personally executed such application before a Consul of the United States.

    (2 witnesses required:) B.H. Paddock, Frederick Bankhardt

    Walter W. Williams

  • Grandview, Iowa, August 4, 1917

    Chief, Bureau of Citizenship, Washington D.C.

    I, J.J. Williams, of Grandview, Iowa, Louisa County, do hereby certify that I am the father of Walter W. Williams now of Foochow, China, and that he was born in Muscatine County, State of Iowa, December 8th, 1868.

    Signed by J.J. Williams

    His Mark: X

    Witnesses: C.W. Arihood; D.J. Highy

  • Issued August 31, 1917.

    Emergency Passport Application: Native

    I, Walter W. Williams, a native and loyal citizen of the United States, hereby apply to the American Legation at Peking, China.

    I solemnly affirm that I was born at Muscatine in the State of Iowa on or about the 8 day of December, 1868; that my father is a native citizen of the United States; that he is now residing at Grandview, Ohio, for the purpose of stock raising; that I am domiciled in the United States, my permanent residence being at Grand View Louisa Co., in the State of Iowa, where I follow the occupation of medical work; that I last left the United States on the 22 day of August, 1914, and am now temporarily sojourning at Yungan, Fukien, China; that I inter to return to the United States within three months/years with the purpose of residing and performing the duties of citizenship therein; that I have not applied elsewhere for a United States passport or for consular registration and been refused.

    I desire a passport for use in visiting the countries hereinafter named for the following purpose: Return to the United States via Japan and Canada.

    Oath of Alegiance: Further, I do solemnly affirm that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; and that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion: So help me God.

    (Signature of Applicant:) Walter W. Williams

    Identification

    I, (T.W. Wilkinson), solemnly affirm that I am a native citizen of the United States; that I reside at Foochow, China; that I have known the above-named Walter W. Williams personally for 10 years and know him to be a native citizen of the United States; and that the facts stated in his affidavit are true to the best of my knowledge and belief.

    (Signature of witness:) T.W. Wilkinson, Foochow, China.

    Sworn to before me this 17 day of August, 1917.

    Albert H. Pontius, American Consul.

    Identifying documents submitted as follows: Applicant was first registered in this Consulate in 1901. Last registration and re-registration approved by Department on May 1, 1915 and December 16, 1916.

Grace T. Williams and oldest son Harold

Issued August 31, 1917.

Emergency Passport Application: Native

I, Grace T. Williams, a native and loyal citizen of the United States, hereby apply to the American Legation, at Peking, China, for an emergency passport for myself and minor children, as follows: Harold Webster, born at St. Louis, Mo. on the 14 day of January, 1914.

I solemnly swear that I was born at North Walton, in the State of New York, on or about the 8 day of September, 187?, that my husband is a native citizen of the United States; that he is now residing at Yungan, Fukien, China, for the purpose of missionary; that I am domiciled in the United States, my permanent residence being at Grand View, Louisa Co., in the State of Iowa, where I follow the occupation of housekeeper; that I last left the United States on the 22 day of August, 1914, and am now temporarily sojourning at Yungan, Fukien, China; that I intend to return to the United States within three months with the purpose of residing and performing the duties of citizenship therein; that I have not applied elsewhere for a United States passport or for consular registration and been refused.

I desire a passport for use in visiting the countries hereinafter named for the following purpose: Return to the United States via Japan and Canada.

Oath of Alegiance: Further, I do solemnly affirm that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; and that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion: So help me God.

(Signature of Applicant:) Grace T. Williams

Identification

I, Thaddeus M. Wilkinson, solemnly swear that I am a native citizen of the United States; that I reside at Foochow, China; that I have known the above-named Grace T. Williams personally for 9 years and know her to be a native citizen of the United States; and that the facts stated in her affidavit are true to the best of my knowledge and belief.

(Signature of Witness:) T.M. Wilkinson, Foochow, China

Sworn to before me this 17 day of August, 1917

Albert H. Pontius, American Consul

Identifying documents submitted as follows: Grace T. Williams is the wife of Walter W. Williams who is duly registered at this Consulate.

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