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William Melvin Faulkner

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Compiled and written by Kimberli Faulkner Hull
Niece of William Melvin Faulkner
The contents of this website, including images and photos, may neither be copied nor otherwise used or posted elsewhere without explicit permission. Citing this page
© Kimberli Faulkner Hull


William Melvin Faulkner was born on 24 February 1908, in Memphis, Tennessee, the first child of Charles Fountain Faulkner and Lora E. Swafford.1 The family soon moved to St. Louis, Missouri, then Cairo, Alexander County, Illinois, and a few years later, on to Chicago, Cook County, Illinois.2

[Open Endnotes in separate tab]

William Melvin Faulkner and Lucille Whitley marriage

“William M. Faulkner and Lucille Whitley Marriage,” wedding announcement, Dixon (Lee County, Illinois) Evening Telegraph, 12 Jul 1928, p. 9, col. 5.
“William M. Faulkner and Lucille Whitley Marriage,” wedding announcement, Dixon Evening Telegraph (Dixon, Illinois), 12 Jul 1928, p. 9, col. 5.

On 6 July 1928, William Melvin married Lucille Whitley of Sterling, Whiteside County, Illinois at the Baptist church.3

The couple made their home in nearby Polo, Ogle County, Illinois where William Melvin worked as an auto mechanic.4

"Mr. and Mrs. William Faulkner Living in Polo," news article, Dixon (Illinois) Evening Telegraph, 24 Aug 1928, p. 8, col. 1.
“Mr. and Mrs. William Faulkner Living in Polo,” news article, Dixon Evening Telegraph (Dixon, Illinois), 24 Aug 1928, p. 8, col. 1.

Betty Lou Faulkner was born to the couple about December 1929.5

William Melvin moved back to Chicago with Betty Lou to live with his parents and family and worked as a mechanic.6 Lucille remained living in Sterling with her mother.7

Lucille suffered a fractured skull in an auto accident while driving with friends in Sterling, Illinois on 19 June 1930.8

Lucille Faulkner Auto Accident, Moline, Illinois, 19 Jun 1930
“Lucille Faulkner Auto Accident,” news article, The Dispatch (Moline, Illinois), 19 Jun 1930, p. 14, col. 4.

Betty Lou Faulkner Love

Betty Lou Faulkner, ca. 1940- Faulkner-Hull Family Papers, privately held by Kimberli Faulkner Hull.
Betty Lou Faulkner, ca. 1950, Faulkner-Hull Family Papers, privately held by Kimberli Faulkner Hull.

At some point after 1935, William Melvin’s daughter, Betty, went to live in the Methodist Deaconess Orphanage in Lake Bluff, Illinois, where she was living in 1940.9

Methodist Deaconess Orphanage, Lake Bluff, Illinois, ca. 1927, postcard.
Methodist Deaconess Orphanage, Lake Bluff, Illinois, ca. 1927, postcard.

By 1949, Betty had moved to Sterling, Illinois, and was living at 710r 12th Avenue.10

R. L. Polk, compiler, Sterling, Illinois, City Directory Sterling, Rock Falls and Morrison, R. L. Polk Directory Co., 1952), Betty L. Faulkner, p. 63.
R. L. Polk, compiler, Sterling, Illinois, City Directory Sterling, Rock Falls, and Morrison: R. L. Polk Directory Co., 1949), Betty L. Faulkner, p. 63.

About 1950, Betty Lou married George H. “Joe” Love, Jr. and the couple was living at 810 E. 5th in Sterling, Illinois in 1952. George was working as a bale tie operator at NW Steel and Wire.11

R. L. Polk, compiler, Sterling, Illinois, City Directory Sterling, Rock Falls and Morrison, R. L. Polk Directory Co., 1952), George H. Love, Jr. and Betty L., p. 103
R. L. Polk, compiler, Sterling, Illinois, City Directory Sterling, Rock Falls, and Morrison: R. L. Polk Directory Co., 1952), George H. Love, Jr. and Betty L., p. 103.

Two known children were born to Betty and George.12 In 1958 and 1959, George and Betty Love were living at 2101 Canal RF in Sterling, Illinois.13 George and Betty divorced in November 1965 and Betty was granted custody of the children.14 George Love died in Cook County, Illinois on 29 June 1986.15 It is unknown when or where Betty Lou died.16

William Melvin Faulkner and Bonnie Virginia Harned marriage

William Melvin married second to Bonnie Virginia Harned on 1 February 1939 in Shelby County, Tennessee.17

“Marriage Licenses, William M. Faulkner–Bonnie Harned,” newspaper notice, The Commercial Appeal (Memphis, Tennessee), 2 Feb 1939, p. 21, col. 5.
“Marriage Licenses, William M. Faulkner–Bonnie Harned,” newspaper notice, The Commercial Appeal (Memphis, Tennessee), 2 Feb 1939, p. 21, col. 5.

In 1940, William was working at the Milky Way Farm in Pulaski, Giles County, Tennessee, the same year the Farm’s, Gallahadion, won the Kentucky Derby. 18

“Gallahadion, Milky Way Farm Entry, Wins Kentucky Derby Before 90,000,” newspaper article, The Chattanooga Times (Chattanooga, Tennessee), 5 May 1940, p. 13, col. 1.
“Gallahadion, Milky Way Farm Entry, Wins Kentucky Derby Before 90,000,” newspaper article, The Chattanooga Times (Chattanooga, Tennessee), 5 May 1940, p. 13, col. 1.

Following Tennesee, William Melvin and Bonnie moved to Tampa, Florida where William Melvin worked as a horse trainer as well.19 William Melvin and Bonnie had one son, Gary Earl, born on 11 March 1950.20

William Melvin, Bonnie, and Gary Earl Faulkner. 1952.
William Melvin, Bonnie, and Gary Earl Faulkner. 1952. Back reads: “Faulkner.” Faulkner-Hull Family Papers, privately held by Kimberli Faulkner Hull, Massachusetts.
"Sunshine Park Race Form, Ninth Race, W. M. Faulkner, Trainer," news article, The Tampa Tribune (Tampa, Florida), 6 Feb 1953, p. 4-B, col. 3.
“Sunshine Park Race Form, Ninth Race, W. M. Faulkner, Trainer,” news article, The Tampa Tribune (Tampa, Florida), 6 Feb 1953, p. 4-B, col. 3.

William Melvin’s family lost contact with him and tried to locate him in 1954 prior to his father’s death.21

“Missing Persons, William M. Faulkner,” newspaper notice, The Commercial Appeal (Memphis, Tennessee), 7 Feb 1954, p. 40, col. 4.
“Missing Persons, William M. Faulkner,” newspaper notice, The Commercial Appeal (Memphis, Tennessee), 7 Feb 1954, p. 40, col. 4.
“Wanted, One Man, Elderly Chicago Man Trying to Locate William M. Faulkner, 47,” newspaper notice, The Tampa Tribune (Tampa, Florida), 6 Sept 1954, p. 9, col. 2.
“Wanted, One Man, Elderly Chicago Man Trying to Locate William M. Faulkner, 47,” newspaper notice, The Tampa Tribune (Tampa, Florida), 6 Sept 1954, p. 9, col. 2.

William Melvin Faulkner died on June 8, 1979, in Tampa, Hillsborough County, Florida, at the age of 71.22

William Melvin Faulkner, obituary, Tampa (Florida) Tribune, 9 Jun 1979, col. 1.
“William Melvin Faulkner,” obituary, Tampa Tribune (Tampa, Florida) 9 Jun 1979, col. 1.

Bonnie Virginia Harned Faulkner died on 25 Oct 1982 in Hillsborough County, Florida.23 Gary Earl Faulkner died on 26 July 2013 in Tampa, Hillsborough, Florida.24


Endnotes

1. Birth of William Melvin Faulkner.
State of Tennessee, Delayed Certificate of Birth, William Melvin Faulkner, 24 Feb 1908. Birth: 24 Feb 1908, Memphis, Shelby County, Tennessee.
Parents married? Yes. Father: Charles F. Faulkner, birthplace: Paduka, Kentucky. Mother: Laura Swafford, birthplace: Marion, Illinois. Page 2: Affidavit of Lois Swafford Harned, age 50, aunt, Collinsville, Illinois, 20 June 1941.
Notes: Lois (Birdsell) Harned was William Faulkner’s mother-in-law. She signed William’s delayed birth certificate application as his aunt, name of Lois Swafford Harned. William’s mother was Lora Swafford-there is no evidence Lois was her sister. It is believed she could not attest in person as his mother-in-law, so signed it as his “aunt.”

Also, my father, Ernest, William Melvin’s brother, always referred to him as Melvin. I believe his family called him Melvin when he was young and he later went by William M.

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2. William Melvin’s sister, Frances, was born in St. Louis, Missouri in 1909.
St. Louis City, Missouri, Registry of Births, Frances Faulkner, 10 Oct 1909.

In 1910, the family was living with Charles’ stepfather, Philip Taylor.
1910 U.S. census, Cairo, Alexander County, Illinois, population schedule, enumeration district (ED) 16, sheet 8-B, family 162, Philip Taylor household.
– Phillip J. Taylor, age 48, widowed, born Ohio, both parents born in Ohio, occupation: blacksmith, owns shop
– May Taylor, age 19, born in Illinois, both parents born in Ohio
– Margaret Taylor, age 19, born in Illinois, both parents born in Ohio
– William Taylor, age 12, born in Illinois, both parents born in Ohio
– Lora Faulkner, boarder, age 22, widowed, born in Tennessee, both parents born in Tennessee, occupation: sales woman, dry goods
– Milton, boarder, age 3, born in Illinois, both parents born in Tennessee
– Francis, boarder, age 1, born in Illinois, both parents born in Tennessee
Notes: All of the birth locations and parents’ birth locations are incorrect. Lora was listed as widowed; she would have been married in 1910. William Melvin is listed as Milton and Charles was not enumerated with the family.

The family moved to Chicago about 1917, as Phil was born in 1916 in Cairo and Charles registered for the WWI draft in 1918 in Chicago.
United States World War II Draft Registration Card, Philip Lawrence Faulkner, serial no. 760, Local Draft Board no. 28, Chicago, Cook County, Illinois. Birth: 29 Dec 1985, Cairo, Alexander County, Illinois.

Charles and Lora were living at 810 E. 57th St. in Chicago when Charles registered for the WWI draft. United States World War I Draft Registration Card, Charles Fountain Faulkner, serial no. 679, Local Draft Board no. 15, Chicago, Cook County, Illinois.

1920 U.S. census, Chicago, Cook County, Illinois, population schedule, ward 7, enumeration district (ED) 444, sheet 4-A, dwelling [blank], family 71, Charles Faulkner household.
– Charles Faulkner, age 38, married, born in Kentucky, father born in U.S., mother born in Kentucky, occupation: distribution of circulars
– Lora Faulkner, age 37, married, born in Illinois, both parents born in Illinois
– William Faulkner, age 13, born in Tennessee
-Francis, age 10, born in Missouri
– Phillip Faulkner, age 3, born in Illinois

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3. “William M. Faulkner and Lucille Whitley Marriage,” wedding announcement, Dixon Evening Telegraph (Dixon, Illinois), 12 Jul 1928, p. 9, col. 5.

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4. “Mr. and Mrs. William Faulkner Living in Polo,” news article, Dixon Evening Telegraph (Dixon, Illinois), 24 Aug 1928, p. 8, col. 1.

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5. In 1930, William Melvin and Betty Lou were living with Charles and Lora Faulkner in Chicago. Betty was enumerated as 4 months old on 5 April 1930; it is estimated she was born about Dec 1929.
1930 U.S. census, Chicago, Cook County, Illinois, Block no. 136, population schedule, ward 8, p. 5 (stamped), enumeration district (ED) 16-341, sheet 5-A, dwelling 46, family 113, Charles Faulkner household.
– Charles Faulkner, age 49, married, born in Kentucky, both parents born in Kentucky, occupation: circular disp in the advertising industry
– Lora Faulkner, wife, age 52, married, born in Illinois, both parents born in Illinois
– William Faulkner, son, age 24, married, born in Tennessee, occupation: automobile mechanic
– Phillip Faulkner, son, age 14, single, born in Illinois, attended school
– Clarence Faulkner, son, age 10, single, born in Illinois, attended school
– Ernest Faulkner, son, age 7, single, born in Illinois, attended school
– Betty Faulkner, granddaughter, age 4 months, single, born in Illinois, both parents born in Illinois

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6. Ibid.

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7. Lucille Faulkner was living with her mother, Cynthia Weaver, 1930 U.S. census, Whiteside County, Illinois, population schedule, Sterling, enumeration district (ED) 98-36, sheet 20B (penned), dwelling 478, family 509, Cynthia Weaver household.
– Lucille Faulkner, daughter, age 17, married, age 15 when first married

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8. “Lucille Faulkner Auto Accident,” news article, The Dispatch (Moline, Illinois), 19 Jun 1930, p. 14, col. 4.

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9. Betty Lou Faulkner living in Methodist Deaconess Orphanage.
1940 U.S. census, Lake County, Illinois, population schedule, Lake Bluff, enumeration district (ED) 49-65, sheet 1B (penned), Betty Lou Faulkner.
– Faulkner, Betty Lou, inmate, age 10, born in Illinois, living in Chicago in 1935.

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10. R. L. Polk, compiler, Sterling, Illinois, City Directory Sterling, Rock Falls and Morrison: R. L. Polk Directory Co., 1949), Betty L. Faulkner, p. 63.

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11. R. L. Polk, compiler, Sterling, Illinois, City Directory Sterling, Rock Falls and Morrison: R. L. Polk Directory Co., 1952), George H. Love, Jr. and Betty L., p. 103.

Also, the birth of their first child, a son, occurred in 1950; source withheld as son is living.

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12. “Betty and George Love Jr Divorce,” news article, Sterling Daily Gazette, (Sterling, Illinois), 9 Nov 1965, p. 2. col. 4.

Also, when Betty’s grandfather died in 1955, his obituary cited two great-grandchildren. No other known great-grandchildren of Charles and Lora Faulkner had been born by 1955.
Faulkner-Charles F.,” obituary, Chicago (Illinois] Tribune, p. 67, col. 5.

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13. R. L. Polk, compiler, Sterling, Illinois, City Directory Sterling, Rock Falls and Morrison: R. L. Polk Directory Co., 1958), George and Betty Love, p. 255.

Also, R. L. Polk, compiler, Sterling, Illinois, City Directory Sterling, Rock Falls and Morrison: R. L. Polk Directory Co., 1959), George and Betty Love, p. 275.

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14. “Betty and George Love Jr Divorce,” news article, Sterling Daily Gazette, (Sterling, Illinois), 9 Nov 1965, p. 2. col. 4.

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15. “Cook County, Illinois Death Index, 1908-1988,” George H. Love, file no, 37308, death date 29 June 1986.

Also, “Infection Dims Hope of New Heart for Sterling Man,” George Joe Love news article, Dispatch (Moline, Illinois), 26 Jun 1986, p. 6, col. 1.

Also, “George H. Love,” death notice, Register Star (Rockford, Illinois) 1 Jul 1986, p. 6, col. 3.

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16. As Betty was only 35 when she divorced in 1965, it is highly possible she remarried and/or could have moved from Illinois.
Betty was not found in searches for “Betty Love,” “Elizabeth Love,” “Betty Lou Love.” Betty Lou Faulkner,” on Ancestry and Family Search.
Betty was not found in searches on Find A Grave for “Betty Love,” birth 1929 +/- 1 year: 22 results.
People named “Betty L Love” that were eliminated as possibilities:
– Betty Lou Love (1930-2004), spouse John, died Hohenwald, TN, Find A Grave memorial 59871380
– Betty Lou Sandberg Love (1928-2001), daughter of Henry L Sandberg and Luba E Peterson, died 15 May 2001, last residence Dixon, Illinois
– Betty L. Chappell Love (1938-2012), spouse of David Love, died 26 Jul 2012 in Winnebago County, Illinois, Find A Grave memorial 94372801
– Betty Lou Waugh Faulkner (1930-1997), spouse of Horace Gordon Faulkner, Find A Grave memorial
32860325

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17. Shelby County, Tennessee, Marriage licenses 1939, marriage license with return, Faulkner–Harned, 1 Feb 1939. Also, Shelby County, Tennessee, Marriage Bonds, 1938-1940, Z2, A3:420, Faulkner–Harned, 1 Feb 1939.

Also, “Marriage Licenses, William M. Faulkner–Bonnie Harned,” newspaper notice, The Commercial Appeal (Memphis, Tennessee), 2 Feb 1939, p. 21, col. 5.

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18. United States World War II Draft Registration Card, William Melvin Faulkner, serial no. 3366, Local Draft Board no. 1, Pulaski, Giles County, Tennessee, 16 Oct 1940.
Birth: 24 Feb 1908, Memphis, Tennessee. Age: 32.
Person who knows address: Walter E. Harnard, father-in-law.
Employer: Milky Way Farm, Pulaski, Giles County, Tennessee.

Also, “Gallahadion, Milky Way Farm Entry, Wins Kentucky Derby Before 90,000,” newspaper article, The Chattanooga Times (Chattanooga, Tennessee), 5 May 1940, p. 13, col. 1.

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19. William Melvin Faulkner’s occupation listed on death certificate. State of Florida, Bureau of Vital Statistics, certificate 79-047343, local file no: 02739 (1979), William Melvin Faulkner, 8 June 1979.

Also, “Sunshine Park Race Form, Ninth Race, W. M. Faulkner, Trainer,” news article, The Tampa Tribune (Tampa, Florida), 6 Feb 1953, p. 4-B, col. 3.

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20. “U.S. Public Records Index, 1950-1993, Volume 2,” Gary Faulkner, Tampa, Florida, birth 11 March 1950.

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21. “Missing Persons, William M. Faulkner,” newspaper notice, The Commercial Appeal (Memphis, Tennessee), 7 Feb 1954, p. 40, col. 4.

Also, “Wanted, One Man, Elderly Chicago Man Trying to Locate William M. Faulkner, 47,” newspaper notice, The Tampa Tribune (Tampa, Florida), 6 Sept 1954, p. 9, col. 2.

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22. State of Florida, Bureau of Vital Statistics, Tampa, Hillsborough County, certificate 79-047343, local file no: 02739 (1979), William Melvin Faulkner, 8 June 1979; privately held by Kimberli Faulkner Hull, Massachusetts.
Certificate of death Florida, State File No: 79-047343, Local file No: 02739.
Name: William Melvin Faulkner. Sex: Male. Date of death: June 8, 1979. Race: White. Age: 71.
Date of birth: Feb 24, 1908. County of death: Hillsborough. City: Tampa. St Joseph’s Hospital Emer Rm Place of birth: Tennessee. Married. Surviving spouse: Bonnie Harned
Usual occupation: Horse Trainer. Industry: Race Track.
Residence State: Florida County: Hillsborough City: Tampa Address: Rt 4, Box 401 Albany Dr.
Father’s name: Charles Faulkner Mother’s name: Grace Swafford Informant: Bonnie Faulkner
Address: Rt 4, Box 401 Albany Dr., Tampa, Florida 33624. Cremation. Bay Area Facility, Inc., Pinellas County, Florida. FT Blount Co, 5101 Nebraska Ave. Tampa, Florida 33603

Also, “William M. Faulkner,” obituary, Tampa (Florida) Tribune, 9 Jun 1979, col. 1.

Also, Find A Grave, memorial 195155162, William Melvin Faulkner (1888–1964), cremation.

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23. State of Florida, Florida Department of Health, Office of Vital Records, Florida Death Index, Hillsborough County, Bonnie Virginia Faulkner, 25 Oct 1982. Birth: 20 Mar 1913.

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24. “Gary Faulkner,” obituary, Tampa Bay Times (St. Petersburg, Florida), 2 Aug 2013, p. B6, col. 1.

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Citing this page: Kimberli Faulkner Hull, author, “William Melvin Faulkner,” Cool Adventures
( https://cooladventures.com/genealogy/william-melvin-faulkner-1908-1979/ : posted 2021).

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