Title: Police officer
Birthdate: March 16, 1888
Death Date: May 12, 1920
Plot Location: Section 155, Lot 111-112; GPS: 39.93682* N, 075.24207* W

Screenshot (375) Boyd

He was known as William Jr. but he was actually the third generation with the same name. His grandparents were Irish immigrants and his father was a veteran police officer. William Jr. was the first of seven children, with only the last one being a girl.

The 1910 census shows William didn’t immediately follow in his father’s footsteps. At age 22 he was working as a plumber at the Baldwin Locomotive Works. Coincidentally, his Irish grandfather was a shoemaker who made boots that were designed for and worn by many Baldwin employees.

Wiliam married Elsie Grueninger in 1913 and, in another coincidence, his brother married her sister the year before. The year he began his career as a police officer isn’t certain, but it was listed on his draft registration in 1917. In the spring of 1920 two girls were at a carnival in the area of 22nd and Vine when some men began harassing them, so they called the police. Officer Boyd and two others responded. A crowd had formed, two brothers resisted and fought the police, allegedly kicking William in the ribs, causing him to suffer fatal internal injuries. The brothers were arrested but charges were dropped as this news story summarizes the case.

William was buried in the same section as his grandparents, his uncle Matthew, and his brother Alfred, all of whom predeceased him. He and Elsie had no children and though she lived another 53 years, she never remarried. She was buried with her parents in Lawnview Cemetery in 1973 but she had William’s name inscribed in the gravestone along with hers. That’s why no one else’s name shares his gravestone here in Mount Moriah (below), although another brother, Matthew, is in Section F. After William’s parents died they were originally buried with him but were later removed to West Laurel Hill Cemetery.


Japanese maple tree in front of a monument at Mount Moriah Cemetery

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