Greetings, I am trying to find the death date of my 3rd great-grandfather, Ezekiel Washington Fowler (born from 1818/1819 or 1826 in Grafton, NH). His father is Benjamin F. Fowler and his mother is Honor (Nora) Vaugh Hayes. The last record of Ezekiel is 1863 when he was mustered out of the 2nd Cavalry, Nebraska. The last census he appears on is 1860 (Nebraska). in the 1870 Nebraska census, his wife, Harriet "Jane" Odell, is living with her daughter and son-in-law, and two of her children. Other children went to live with friends and relatives in Iowa and Wisconsin. There is no column in the 1870 census for marital status. On the 1880 census in Columbia Co Wisconsin, Harriet (Jane) Odell appears as a widow.
I'm doing research for a DAR patriot, who goes through the line of Ezekiel Fowler, and also the Mayflower Society. Besides, it's a mystery. I corresponded with the Nebraska Historical Society ("History Nebraska"), and they found essentially the same info I have. Ezekiel sold land for taxes after he mustered out of the Army, so he was probably broke and poor. I checked the various county court records (called the clerks of court), and there are no probate records. He and his family are early pioneer settlers in Pawnee, Nebraska. One of their sons was born in a covered wagon en route. At the time, Nebraska was a territory, and I've been told that records there are particularly sparse. There are no grave stones as far as I can tell. I've checked all of the big sites, such as FindaGrave, and have checked every cemetery where any of his relatives are buried, including the Fowler Prairie Family cemetery, and every state in which he lived. His son, Henry Fowler, died in 1868 (Nebraska) at 17 yrs old, and he has a substantial grave stone, which is odd considering his father has none. Unfortunately, several family trees have Ezekiel dying in 1864 in the Civil War and buried at Arlington, but this is wrong. That Ezekiel/Washington Fowler served in New York and is not related. I have checked all military records in NARA and Fold3. He has a Grand Army of the Republic certificate, but there is no date of death.
I may have hit a brick wall and have to face the fact that I may never find a death record. The only fact is that in 1880, his wife is a widow. So he died between 1863-1879. Any guidance is appreciated. I cannot at this point travel to Nebraska and look through graveyards or anything similar. Thanks and regards