Nine month old William can be found in the 1850 US Census residing in the Alfred Burnett household. Since this family was counted on September 12, 1850, we can determine his birth to be about January 1850.
The 1860 US Census finds William in the Alfred Burnett household at 10 years of age. The census date was August 24-25 1860, so we further establish he was likely born in December 1849.
In the 1870 US Census, there is a William listed in Julia Burnett’s household. However, this “William” is 17 years of age. My thought is he was no longer in this household and this “William” is actually his younger brother Loren, who would have been 17 years old in 1870.
In “The History of the Gilley Family” book there is mention that William is buried in Bilbo Cemetery, in Lake Charles, LA. However, no tombstone or record can be located supporting he is buried there. William would have been 15 years of age at the close of the Civil War, so he was probably too young to have fought and died in the conflict. Perhaps he died as a youth? Maybe he moved away and today has many descendants in another part of the country?
|1850 US Census|
|1860 US Census|
|1870 US Census|
 Year: 1850; Census Place: , Harrison, Mississippi; Roll: M432_372; Page: 106A; Image: 217.
 Year: 1860; Census Place: , Calcasieu, Louisiana; Roll: M653_409; Page: 201; Image: 203; Family History Library Film: 803409.
 Year: 1870; Census Place: Ward 9, Calcasieu, Louisiana; Roll: M593_509; Page: 65B; Image: 134; Family History Library Film: 552008.