Source: Waveland Independent, Waveland, Montgomery County, Indiana , July 14, 1899
William J. Davis, died at his home at St. Petersburg, Florida on Monday. Mr. Davis was well known to the older citizens of Waveland having been engaged in the mercantile business here with TL Hanna for a number of years prior to 1873. He made a visit here about a year ago. He leaves a wife and one child, Mrs. Charles Oglesby of Browns Valley. - kbz
Source: Waveland Independent Waveland, Montgomery County, Indiana July 28, 1899
William J. Davis who died recently at St. Petersburg, Fla was a very successful business man and leaves an estate appraised at $125,000 of which $63,000 is personal property. He left a will says the Crawfordsville Journal, disposing of his property as follows: To his daughter, Mrs. Charles Oglesby of Brown's Valley $10,000. To his mother, Mrs. Eizabeth Davis of this city, an income of $30 per month. To WT. Whittington of this city, $1000. To Mrs. Baumer of Ohio sister of his wife, the income of $2000. All the remainder of the estate is placed in the hands of the executors of his will to hold in trust during the life of his wife. She is to receive from the estate $3000 per annum and to retain a life ownership of the family home in Florida. Upon the death of Mrs. Davis the executors of the estate willl pay to Mrs. W. Whittington, Sr. $10,000 to WJ and Emma Steart at Tampa $1000 each; to his colored servant, Louis Glover $1000 to the trustees of the Freedom Cemetery in this county where the decedants' family are buried $1000. The remainder of the estate is to be invested by the executor in Indiana real estate for his daughter, Mrs. Oglesby of Browns' Valley during her life. Upon her death it will go to her children. WT Whittington and the Bank & Trust Company of Tampa are named executors. - kbz
Source: Crawfordsville Weekly Journal Friday, 28 July 1899
St. Petersburg (Fla.) Sub-Peninsula: At 1 o’clock Tuesday afternoon Col. William J. Davis died at his residence on Fifth Avenue in this city from chronic kidney troubles, with which he had been suffering for some time. His ailment had only assumed an alarming phase a few days ago, having only necessitated his confinement in bed from Sunday last. At sunrise Tuesday morning he began to show signs of sinking and from that time until an hour after noon he continued to lose ground, when shortly after 1 o’clock the end came without apparent pain.
Col. Davis was 63 years and six days old when death came, and had been a resident of St. Petersburg for about eight years. He was a native of Crawfordsville, Ind., where his father was a prominent Baptist minister and had during his ministry in the west became quite noted as an eloquent preacher.
Col. Davis, after leaving his native place, engaged in business pursuits in New York, Richmond, and Charlotte, N. C. At the latter place he conducted a large mercantile establishment for six years, in which he amassed a fortune. He moved to Florida from Charlotte. After a visit of one season to St. Petersburg, he became very much pleased with the place and the next year returned and located permanently. He at once became a purchaser of property here and at the time of his death was one of the largest property owners in the city. He, a couple of years ago, became interested in growing pineapples and associating with his brother-in-law, Mr. J. C. Heard, under the firm name of J. C. Heard & Co invested in a tract of land, shedded it and set it in plants which are now yielding a handsome income. This pinery the late Colonel Davis took especial pride in and took great interest in showing it to friends.
On Saturday last only a few hours before he was taken with his last illness, he had made a generous proposition to the city to donate a valuable piece of land on the bay front for public park purposes. He was at the time of his death a large stockholder in the Citizens’ National Bank of Tampa and vice president of that institution. He was for a number of years connected with the well known hat firm of H. J. Harding & Co., of New York.
Col. Davis’ near relatives who survive him are a wife, mother, daughter and one sister. The remains were embalmed by Undertaker Bussey, of this city.
The funeral services took place this afternoon at 1 o’clock at the family residence on Fifth Avenue. The parlor, in which room the services were conducted, had been most tastefully arranged with a profusion of appropriate flowers by admiring friends whose thoughtfulness had also banked the casket in white blossoms and buds. Rev. J. W. Heard, pastor of the Methodist Church of this city, officiated and preached a touchingly appropriate sermon.
The pall bearers were Messrs. John Trice, C. E. Allen, W. B. Gray and John Savarese, of Tampa, L. Y. Jenness, W. N. Ireland, J. F. Harrison and Cyrus W. Butler, of St. Petersburg.
Immediately after the services at the house the remains were conveyed to Greenwood Cemetery, where the interment took place in the presence of a large number of friends. - thanks "S"