When William Henderson Davis was born on 11 May 1866, in Richland Township, Putnam, Missouri, United States, his father, John Davis, was 36 and his mother, Martha "Patsy" Jones, was 37. He married Mary Elizabeth Minear on 27 February 1885, in Missouri, United States. They were the parents of at least 1 son. He lived in Troy Township, Monroe, Iowa, United States in 1930 and Hutton Valley, Howell, Missouri, United States in 1940. He died on 4 October 1943, in West Plains, Howell, Missouri, United States, at the age of 77, and was buried in Oak View Cemetery, Albia, Monroe, Iowa, United States.
English and Welsh: patronymic meaning ‘Dafydd's (son)’, equivalent to Welsh ap Dafydd, the Welsh form of David . The spelling Davis is more typical in southwestern England northwards as far as Lancashire, where the frequency of the surname largely reflects Welsh migration, but may sometimes represent a native English surname based on Davy (compare Davies ). Davis (including in the sense 2 below) is the eighth most frequent surname in the US. It is also very common among African Americans.
Irish and Scottish: adopted for Gaelic Mac Daibhéid ‘son of David’; see McDevitt . Compare Davies .
History: John Davis or Davys (c. 1550–1605) was an English navigator who searched for the Northwest Passage. — By the 18th century there were numerous persons named Davis in America, including the jurist John Davis, born in 1761 in Plymouth, MA, and Henry Davis, a clergyman and college president, who was born in 1771 in East Hampton, NY. — Jefferson Davis, born in 1808 in KY, was president of the Confederate States of America from 1861 to 1865.