Charles was born in Indiana in 1867, the son of Romanus and Maranda Lees. His father Romanus was born in Pennsylvania on 29 September 1826. Romanus married Maranda M. Smith on 27 June 1858 in Miami County, Indiana. They had at least eleven children. Maranda was born about 1842 in Ohio, and died in 1880 in Pipe Creek, Miami, Indiana. Romanus died in Marion, Grant County, Indiana on 13 September 1904. Their children not listed on the 1870 Census are: Otto Smith Lees, b. 1875; Perry Smith Lees, b. 20 Jan 1876, Indiana - 31 July 1951, Upland, Grant, IN; Alice Lees, 14 Dec 1880 - 26 July 1893; Franklin Smith Lees, b. 22 May (year?); and Hannah C. Lees, 1873 - 13 June 1880, Miami, IN. 
In 1870, they lived in Pipe Creek Township, Miami, Indiana. The household included Romanus, 43, a farmer, born in Pennsylvania, with $450 in personal estate; his wife Maranda, 29, born in Ohio; and their six children, all born in Indiana: Emily, 11; Abraham, 9; Isaac, 7 (Emily, Abraham, and Isaac were in school); Robert, 5; Charles, 3; and Margaretta, an infant, born in September 1869. 
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