William Goebel Ware (1900 – 1934)

William G Ware
Added by: Susan Eaton

“William G. Ware was born in Union County, KY on Feb 9, 1900, just 6 days after the assassination of his namesake, William Justus Goebel, then-governor of KY. William was the third of 11 children born to Henry Welch Ware and Merta (Mertie) Hughes Young, and was referred to by his middle name, Goebel.

In his 20s, Goebel left KY for Ouachita Parish, LA to live with his uncle until he could find work. There it is believed he met his future wife, Elma Lea Mathewes, whose family was and is still prominent in the parish. They were married in Rome, GA in April of 1929. By the early 30s they were living in Lincoln Parish, LA, and Goebel was working in Baton Rouge, where occasionally Elma would visit him. One such visit was recorded on the social pages of the Ruston Daily Leader, the local newspaper — “August 25, 1933: Mrs. William Ware left yesterday for Baton Rouge to be with Mr Ware who is employed in that city”.
Family historical records show that Goebel was a friend of controversial governor Huey Long and his family, and socialized with them frequently. It is possible though not certain this association led to Goebel’s job in Baton Rouge, Louisiana’s capital.
Goebel died in Baton Rouge in Nov 1934 after a long illness. He was brought back to Ruston and is buried in Greenwood Cemetery.
Elma went on to greater things after his death. She, along with Mrs. Ethel Taylor, founded the First Church of Christ in June 1935. They kept it going with just a few women until they were able to get more support, and the church is still in existence today as Ruston Church of Christ, with a large and active congregation. They have a website on the Internet as well as a Facebook page, and their web address is http://www.rustonchurchofchrist.org/. The church serves an important role in the community, as the overseer of the Christian Student Center at Louisiana Tech University.
In August of 1942 Elma married David Solomon (Sol) Croom in Union County, AR, and lived out her days with Sol, passing away December 1965 in Des Moines, IA. Both her and Sol are buried next to Goebel at Greenwood Cemetery, with Elma resting between her two beloved husbands.”
Source:  Susan Eaton

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