He emigrated from England in 1843. He came with his father, step-mother, and siblings. They sailed on the Swanton, and arrived in New Orleans on 16 March 1843. His father and step-mother both died before being able to come to Utah. He and his siblings were placed in different families in order to come West. At this time it is unknown which family William came with, nor the company they traveled with, or when they came West. However, William appears in the 1856 and 1860 Censuses living with the Janvarin Dame family in Fillmore Utah.
In some sources the surname is spelled "Paine" or "Pane."
His death date is confirmed by the inscription on his gravestone., which shows his surname as "Payn."