The following story was written by Barbara Wire de Leon
DESCENDANTS OF RALPH LYONS Written 12/03/2003
1. Ralph Lyons came to Black River Twp. in 1810 and died 1832. I do not know his wifes
name or any other children he had.
2. Winfield Scott Lyons Winfield (sometimes listed as Scott) was a shipbuilder and a
foreman with Billy Jones.
A list of ships he built in-cludes: Sch. EQUATER, Sch.
TRENTON, Sch. MAGNOLIA, Brg. CONCORD, Sch. ABIGAIL, Sch. MAINE, Sch. JOHN S. REID,Sch.
LEADER, Sch. W.S.LYONS, & Sch. J. U. PORTER.
From an article in the Elyria Republican, Mar. 3, 1876, his
death was caused by a runaway team hauling supplies at
3. Catherine Lyons A twin of Winfield - married Capt. Billy Jones
4. Mary Jane Brooks L. married W. S. Lyons in 1841. Daughter of Elizabeth Reid Smith
Brooks Gillmore, she was raised with 2 Smith & 8 Gillmore children (from Burton
5. Winfield Lyons Settled in Coffeyville, Kan. and had a ranch in Texas.
6. Francis (Frank) L. I have found nothing on him.
7, Celia Lyons Married Capt. Robert J. Cowley May 17, 1866
8. Robert John Cowley Born in Cleveland, son of Robert and Catherine Caine Cowley, who
were both born on the Isle of Man. Robert Sr. was also a ships carpenter and I have heard
that he eventually owned a packet boat or boats on the Lakes. R.J. did serve in the Union
Navy, and must have been in on the
capture of Mobile because I have a copy of the first news-
paper published there after the city fell.
9. Catherine Alice L. married first Richard Rush Reid and second Thomas Richard Bowen.
10. Fred Lyons buried in Lorain about Jan. 22, 1901. Obituary says he was first a sailor
and then a bridge builder (bridge connecting the mainland to Belle Isle at Detroit, a lift
bridge on the Chicago River and the Ally elevated railroad in Chicago
during the worlds fair). His wife, Anna Smith of Minnea-
polis had died two years earlier. His only daughter lived in MN with an aunt. He died in
the state hospital in Toledo.
11. Ralph J. Lyons started sailing in 1878 and obtained Captains Papers in 1890. The first
Lorain-built ship that he commanded was the John W. Gates, but eventually the Great Lakes
Steamship Co. had him bring out all their new ships, including the Superior City, which
was christened in Lorain.
FAMILY OF ROBERT J. AND CELIA LYONS COWLEY;
1. Scott Lyons Cowley I haven't pursued this man, except for the records in the family
bible. He lived in Toronto, occupation unknown and was married twice: first to Minnie
second to Alma Fleming.
2. Kittie (Katherine?) Was a housewife in Lorain. After death of
Samuel, she moved in with us in Pittsburgh, moved with us to Gary, IN and died while I was
away in my freshman year in college.
3. Samuel Almeron Wire Son of William Almeron and Caroline Rosette Powers Wire, he was
born in Cleveland. He married first, Minnie Wilcox in Lake County, OH, but she died of
blood poisoning after one year. Married Kitty next, worked for National Tube, where he
retired as Ass't. Superintendent of the Skelp Mill
4. William Almeron Wire Was a railroader, and came to Lorain ca. 1875 as Yard-master for
the Cleveland, Tuscarawas Valley & Wheeling RR. Founding member of Disciple Church,
and from a church history, baptized 8 people in Feb. in Lake Erie,
cutting steps down thru the ice to water. In 1884 he went
back to Cleveland as Dockmaster for the Big Four RR, and
then in 1888 returned to Lorain as Ass't. Superintendent of
the C.L.& W. RR. He retired to Glenvillle, OH, and is buried
in Perry, Lake Co. He was also instrumental in founding
the Railroadmen's Y.M.C.A.
5. Caroline Powers Wire She was born in NH, moved with her family to Lake Co at an early
age. Both her mother, Ann Cummings and her father, Benjamin Powers had grandfathers who
fought in the Revolutionary War, as did William. A. Wire.
6. Robt. Henry Cowley A medical Dr., he married Anna Parry in New York Mills, NY and
returned to practice in Lorain. He conducted tests for bacteria on a new water filter for
the Lorain Water Works. Went to Berea, KY to be head of medical dept. for the Berea
College. Their daughter Anna died there at age
7. Dorothy Esther Wire Never married. Graduated from Oberlin in music and taught in
Wyoming for a year before locating to Philadelphia. She taught music for awhile at the
Friends School, and then secured a position at the Shipley School (prep school for Bryn
Mawr) where she retired as Head of the
Music Dept. She lived in the same efficiency apartment from the time she got the job at
Shipley until she died at age 96 in 1993.
8. Robert William Wire Graduated from Miami U. in Oxford, OH. Four letter man in football
and basketball....All Ohio Tackle his senior year.
Went to work for National Tube and had a years training in Boston. When he finally located
in Chicago, he and mother were married and I was born there. In 1936 he was transferred to
Pittsburgh headquarters (a big thrill for his dad). When the war started, we were
transferred to Gary, where the Tube Co. resurrected an old mill that had been
defunct since the depression and refitted it to make tank pins and struts for
airplane landing gear. He was sales manager there, and in 1945 was made area mgr. for the
southwest territory and we moved to Dallas. After the war ended, he was sought after to be
President of Loffland Bros. Drilling Contractors (the owner thought he
would be able to finagle all the drill pipe he needed, but Dad didn't do business that
way). He did a good job with the company....at that time they were the largest drilling
con- tracting firm in the world....but took early retirement whenJunior grew up to take
over. They went out of business when the oil boom crashed. Dad and Mom retired to
Bradenton in 1961 and didn't have enough hours in the day to do everything there was
9. Annette Schwarz W. Mother was born in Cincinnati, daughter of Wm. H.and Anna Schmitt
Schwarz. He had inherited the Cincinnati Gold and Silver Refining Co from his dad, Jacob
Schwarz, who was born in Switzerland
She was a Miami graduate, a housewife and volunteer for the rest of her life. They moved
into a condo when the yard got to be too much for Dad to handle, and she stayed there
after he died until I could take early retirement and move in with her.
10. Barbara Wire de Leon I graduated from Horace Mann High in Gary, had two years at
Stephens College in Missouri and then finished up at home in Dallas at SMU. I met Ponce
while on a visit to company friends in Maracaibo, and lived there for 18 mo. after we were
married. We moved to Tulsa when Bobby was born, and then were transferred to Houston just
after Doug was born. We were divorced in 1970, and I got a job with Gulf Research &
Development's Houston lab. (Ponce had worked for Gulfs subsidiary (Mene Grande Oil Co.) in
Venezuela. He was a graduate of U. of Georgia...his father
was Cuban in the Consular Service in Jamaica, U.S. and Canada. Ponce had his choice of 3
armies to join during the war, but chose our Third Division and went thru N. Africa
and Italy. He worked in Personnel for Gulf because
he had picked up a lot of Spanish from his dad. I learned the subject of
Stratigraphic Palynology at the lab, and retired as a Sr. Technician. I toughed it
out at the condo for 9 years after mother died, but two years ago
moved into Freedom Village, a really great retirement residence full of interesting people
and lots of activities.
11. Bob de Leon My oldest son had asthma as a child, which kept him out of the service. He
graduated from North Texas State and has bounced around the graphic arts field all his
career. He is out of a job now, but his wife has a good one, so they are managing. They
live in Houston.
12. Dorien de Leon Dor is a cellist...studied at U. of Houston, Curtis Institute in
Philadelphia and the New England Conservatory in Boston.
She lives in Portland, OR....mostly teaches, but plays with the Cabrillo Music Festival in
Santa Cruz, CA every summer and also played with the Texas Chamber Orchestra in
Houston. She has also played with the Houston and the Portland Symphonys.
13. Douglas de Leon Doug never finished high school, but joined the Navy, got his GED and
tended the Black Boxes on submarine hunter aircraft in the Mediterranean. He went to work
for ATT when he got out, and has been hanging by a thread ever since! He installs
computers for ATT and other customers, but after surviving five big layoffs, will finally
lose his job next month. Fortunately, he is in good financial shape and even got his
mortgage paid off early last summer. He plans to go to school for awhile. He lives in
Deltona, half way in between Orlando and Daytona, and is good about
coming over to check on me often.