HISTORY OF TUSCOLA COUNTY
GEORGE H. GRANGER, M. C., was born in Wayland, Steuben County, N. Y. He first came to Michigan in 1863 he went to Washington as a medical cadet, and in 1864 was an acting assistant surgeon in the One Hundred and Eighty-ninth New York Infantry, serving nine months with that regiment it being mustered out in June, 1865. He was with his regiment, and was present at Leo's surrender. His literary education was acquired at the Genesee Wesleyan Seminary at Lima, N. Y., and the Genesee College, now merged into the University of Syracuse. After leaving the army he went to the Michigan University at Ann Arbor, and in 1867 graduated from he medical department of that institution. He at first commenced practice in Bay City, but in August 1867, moved to the village of Unionville, where he located permanently. He is known as one of the most skillful and accomplished physicians in Tuscola County, and socially as a very genial and enjoyable gentleman. He has represented his country in the State legislature two terms, having been elected in 1879, and re-elected in 1881. Was president of the village of Unionville, and has held the position of county coroner and several other minor township offices. Is a married man.
JOHN S. COY, banker, was born in Cleveland, Ohio, June 8, 1845, but was reared and educated in Port Huron, Mich. In August, 1862, he enlisted in the Twenty-fourth Michigan Infantry, Company A, and served his country in the late struggle for liberty and the Union, until discharged January 20, 1864, for disability caused by six gunshot wounds. One of these was in the right shoulder, one in the left hand, and one in each leg. They were received in the battle of Gettysburg. He had previously fought in the second battle of Bull Run, and in those of Chancellorville, Fredericksburg, the Wilderness, and several other conflicts. By these wounds he was utterly disabled from all work for three and a half years, and permanently disabled from most kinds of employment. he has had fifty-two pieces of bone removed from the wounded shoulder. On his return he remained a while at Port Austin and came thence to Unionville in March, 1868, and engaged for a time in dealing in hoops. he was married to Miss Flora L. Marvin, of Unionville, March 5, 1871. She was born in Andover, Ohio, September 14, 1851. They have one daughter, Gracie M., born in Unionville, November 16, 1875. Mrs. Coy came with her parents to where Unionville now is in 1854, when the trees of the lofty forest held unrivaled sway, and when water and frost seemed to defy the approaches of improvement and agriculture. But she has seen these recede before the invincible power of pioneer resolution and industry, and in their place there has arisen a beautiful and thriving town surrounded by fertile fields, fruitful orchards, and blooming gardens and affording unmeasured facilities for social and personal entertainment and delight. Mr. Coy, shortly after his marriage, bought an interest in the mercantile enterprise conducted by the firm of H. C. Marvin & Co., Unionville, and continued in mercantile life until September, 1882, in the latter part of that time conducting the entire business alone. On December 5, 1881, he opened the Unionville Exchange Bank, in which he has an increasing and remunerative patronage. He also invests in building dwellings for tenants in their rising town. Mr. Coy has served as supervisor of Geneva two years, is serving his second term as treasurer, and has been ten years postmaster of Unionville.
ARAD B. TOWN, carpenter and joiner, was born in Villanova, N. Y., March 21, 1844. When about seventeen years of age he went to Chicago, Ill. Thence he went to Minnesota, where he remained three years; then revisited his native State; later went to Ohio, and from there came to Lapeer County, Mich. In 1868 he came to Unionville, where he now resides. On November 14, 1869, he was married to Miss Moina Wilson of Geneva. She was born in Espyville, Penn., in August, 1849. They have a pleasant home on East State Street, and Mr. Town, in connection with his mechanical labors operates a cider manufactory at his village residence.
HIRAM COBINE, mason, was born in Delaware County, N. Y., November 21, 1844. He grew to manhood and learned his trade in the home where he was born, and came from there to Unionville, Mich., in the spring of 1872. he at once resumed his former occupation, and has received from the first a liberal and increasing patronage. On November 18, 1877, he was married to Miss Maggie Thomas, of Columbia. She was born in Canada, August 6, 1852. Their religious choice is the regular Baptist Church. Mr. Cobine has always taken a cheerful and unabating interest in the progress and improvements of his town. He was one of the first board of Unionville trustees. He is W. M. of the Northern Star Masonic Lodge No. 277, and is a member of the Caro Chapter of Royal Arch Masons. He is commander of the Order of the Knights of the Maccabees; and at the charter election of 1883, he was unanimously elected president of the thriving village of Unionville.
DAVID E. DOZER, of the law firm of Dozer & Dozer, was born in Muskingum County, Ohio, July 28, 1849. He attained his majority in his native State, engaged partly in agricultural pursuits and partly in school teaching. He took a commercial course in Zanesville Business College, Ohio, and later a law course in Ann Arbor, Mich. Here he graduated March 25, 1875. In the following April he came Unionville and opened a law office, and at once received the patronage of the citizens of the place. On February 8, 1872, Mr. Dozer was married to Miss M. Frances Baughman, of Deavertown, Ohio. She was born there December 12, 1847, and was one of ten living sisters, and had three brothers. Mr. and Mrs. Dozer have one daughter, Vida E., born in the State of Ohio, November 8, 1872. He has been village clerk three years, and two years township supervisor. Religiously they are members of the English Lutheran Church. In 1878 Mr. Dozer's brother, H. G. Dozer, came and engaged in the study of law under his instructions. He was born in Muskingum county, Ohio, September 19, 1857. He remained in his native State until coming to Unionville. Later he took a partial course of lectures at Ann Arbor, after which he still prosecuted his studies diligently and successfully in their own office, and was admitted to the bar May 7, 1881. After being admitted he entered the law office of Black & Quinn, of Caro, and remained until April, 1882, when he and his brother organized the law firm,, in which they are now partners. They have not sought to kindle or fan the flame of sudden popularity, but they enjoy a large and steadily increasing practice in the pursuit of their profession.
FRANCIS BRYDLE, clothier, was born in Ashtabula county, Ohio, January 18, 1851. His youth was spent chiefly in Ohio and Pennsylvania. On April 22, 1874, he settled in Fair Grove, Mich., and engaged in engineering, which had been then for some time his occupation, and also gave some attention to agriculture. He had been married September 2, 1871, to Miss Exenie Butler, of Andover, Ohio. She was born there February 18, 1852. They have two children, Frantie Ray and Dedie May. Mr.. Brydle came to Unionville March 18, 1882, and with Mr. H. A. Still opened a store of ready made clothing, boots and shoes, which they are conducting with an increasing custom and unanticipated success. Mr. and Mrs. Brydle have been for some six years members of the Methodist Protestant Church. He also belongs to the order of the Knights of the Maccabees.
HENRY A. STILL, clothier, was born in Fairport, Monroe county, N.Y., July 31, 1852. He spent his youth partly in farming, partly in mercantile work, and partly in railroading. He came to Fair Grove, Mich., in the spring of 1874, and engaged in agriculture in section 36. He and Miss Edna L. Beilby, of Pittsford, N. Y., had been married May 23, 1871. She was born in Monroe County, N. L. Albert and Alfred, twins, Arthur and Henry A. Mr. Still came to Unionville in March, 1882, and joined his finances with Mr. Brydle under the firm title, "Brydle & Still, clothiers, etc." Mr. and Mrs. Still are members of the Methodist Protestant Church.
CHARLES F. SEES, dealer in furniture and undertaker, was born in Lyons, Wayne County, N. Y., January 15, 1845. He came with his parents to Detroit, Mich., in 1850, and six years later went with them to Bruce County, Ontario. They returned to Detroit in 1862. In the fall of 1867 he came to Unionville. His employment in youth had been chiefly agricultural labor; but he had also given some attention to mechanical work, and on coming to Unionville he engaged in carpenter and joiner work as his chosen calling. On January 7, 1872, he was married to Miss Mary V. Kline, of Almer. She was born in Erie county, Penn., December 15, 1852. They have two children, Lewis D., born in Almer, October 25, 1872, and Vida A., born in Unionville September 25, 1880. On January 3, 1879, Mr. Sees opened his present enterprise in furniture and undertaker business, and since then has increased from an annual business of $450 to one of $2,800. Mr. Sees has served as justice of the peace since 1877. He has been school moderator two years and a member of the school board five years. He was a member of the board of registration for the first village election, and a member of the first board of trustees, and is serving in his second term in that office. He has also served one tem as street commissioner. Fraternally Mr. Sees is a Royal Arch Mason, and secretary of Blue Lodge No. 277. Mrs. Sees is a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church.
CAPTAIN ALSON GREENFIELD, supervisor of Columbia,
was born in Herkimer County, N.Y., January 16, 1833. He removed with his
parents to Ohio when about seven years old, where he received his education and
early culture, attending school two terms with James A. Garfield, late president
of the United States. He first came to Tuscola County, Mich., in the fall
of 1854, and bought lands in what is now Columbia. From this time he
taught school in Oakland county some two years, after which he settled on his
lands. At that time, what is now Fair Grove, and one of the banner
townships, seemed to be all swamp and unfit for agricultural purposes.
Columbia was also very wet and unpromising in appearance. He has seen the
water three feet deep in the road track along where the Main Street of
Unionville now presents its beautiful road surface to the gaze of the citizens.
In 1856 or 1857, Mr. Greenfield was elected supervisor of Columbia. The
entire number of votes cast that year was twenty-five. He has served many
years as supervisor, and has twice been chairman of the board of supervisors.
He has served about four years as county treasurer, and two years as
representative to the State legislature. He is justice of the peace and
assessor of Unionville.
On August 4, 1864, Mr. Greenfield received authority to raise a company for the Twenty=ninth Michigan Infantry. He raised Company a, the first in the regiment in a short time. He went as captain with his company to the service of his country, and remained until mustered out of the service September 6, 1865, after the Union had triumphed over slavery and treason. His first lieutenant was Captain E. P. Allen, now of Washtenaw County. Mr. Allen left a remunerative situation in Vassar and Mr. Greenfield left his situation as county treasurer. They toiled in the strife side by side, and their military relations were mutually interesting and pleasant.
CLEMENS MARTINI, manager of the business firm of John C. Liken & Co., at Unionville, Mich., (the said firm consisting of John C. Liken and Richard Marini, of Sebewaing), was born in Germany, April 20, 1853. He came to Sebewaing, Mich., in the spring of 1870, and at once engaged in the employ of Muellerweiss & Liken, of that place. In the spring following that firm dissolved, and he entered the employ of Mr. John C. Liken. In 1874 he went as manager of the business of J. C. & Co., to Kilmanagh. He remained there until December, 1877, when he came and took charge of their mercantile business at Unionville. Their business investments and interests have since then enlarged immensely. They have there now, beside their large and well furnished store, an extensive flouring-mill and grain elevator in successful operation, furnishing 6,000 barrels of flour and 500 tons of mill feed, beside their extensive custom work; and in company with Mr. Frederick Bach, of Sebewaing, under the firm name of Liken & Bach, they have a stave-mill, heading-mill and saw-mill, with a capacity sufficient for the manufacture of ten millions staves and twelve millions heading per annum. The whole enterprise furnishes employment for at least fifty men, and includes a capital of not less than $60,000. Liken & Bach also have a stave, heading and saw-mill, in the village of Fair Grove, with a capacity similar to those in Unionville. They are also preparing to erect a saw-mill at Akron Station, as an auxiliary to their stave and heading-mill at Sebewaing. In that prosperous village they have an extensive mercantile enterprise, conducted in a beautiful and commodious brick block, also a fouring-mill, and a grain elevator holding, when full, 25,000 bushels of grain. They have also a cooper's shop, and a large saw-mill for the manufacture of lumber. Mr. J. C. Liken is the owner of the Bay City, Sebewaing, Caseville & Port Austin Steamboat Line, and also of the Sebewaing & Oscoda Line. Mr. Martini records a pleasant and interesting business life thus far, and contemplates a bright future for this part of the soil on which the general success and future wealth of the community chiefly depend.
WILLIAM H. STANDART, hardware merchant, was born in Cleveland, Ohio, November 3, 1848. He removed with his parents to Attica, Ind., in childhood, and at the age of nine years came with them to Adrian, Mich., and remained there nine years, employed chiefly in farming. From there he went to Detroit as clerk in a hardware store, and later acted as traveling salesman for the firm of Standart Bros., for some five years. While in that employment he was married November 5, 1873, to Miss Mindwell Cook, of Adrian. She was born in Hudson, Mich., July 7, 1853. They have three children, Sarah A., Nellie and Rose. Mr. Standart came to Unionville March 1, 1876, and bought the hardware stock of A. B. C. Comstock, and opened the hardware enterprise, which he still conducts on Main Street. He has a well selected stock, worth some $6,000, accurately adapted to the demands of the citizens, and he has had from the beginning a growing trade. With Mr. E. D. Cook, he also deals extensively in agricultural implements. Last year they sold eighty-two of McCormick's mowers and reapers and self binders. He also has a tin shop in connection with his hardware store, from which he supplies all kinds of tin, copper and sheet iron furniture for his stoves and for customers. He has on Bay Street one of the most elegant dwellings in the place, worth some $2,000. It is about forty feet square in it largest part, with a front extension, and other appurtenances affording most inviting home conveniences and entertainments. The home occupies an acre of ground, and is situated in an extremely pleasant part of the rising town. In fraternity Mr. Standart is a member of the Northern Star Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons.
JAMES W. STINER, druggist, was born in Columbia County, Penn., November 7, 1854. He came with his parents from his native State in 1867, and settled on section 29 in Columbia, Mich. His time was spent chiefly in agriculture. In August, 1875, he engaged as clerk in the store of Greefield & Bell in Unionville, and remained about four years. In November, 1879, he engaged as clerk with his brother, F. A. Stiner, in his drug store, and they added a stock of dry goods and groceries. In August, 1882, Mr. J. W. Stiner and his father, Henry Stiner, bought the entire stock of drugs and goods, and since then Mr. J. W. Stiner has conducted the business, which increases in proportion with the rapid progress of the town and surrounding country. In 1880 Mr. Stiner was elected treasurer of Unionville by the entire vote of the citizens. In 1881 he served as township clerk of Columbia, and also served again as village treasurer. In 1879 he was appointed a notary public and is now serving in his second term in that office.
TIMOTHY LOWTHIAN, physician and surgeon, was born in Princeton, Ontario, May 7, 1848. His youth was spent in his native country. In 1872 he came to Caro, Mich., and spent some five years in the drug business. In 1876 he engaged specially in the study of medicine under the supervision of William Morris, M. D. T. C. D., of Caro. He took his first course of lectures in the University of Michigan in 1878 and 1879. He graduated in the University of Buffalo in 1880, and in his attainments was one of the first in a class of fifty-six. He settled in Unionville in June of that year, and has built up a flourishing and steadily increasing practice in that prosperous town. he was married April 3, 1872, to Miss Margaret Morris, second daughter of Dr. William Morris. She was born in Florence, Canada, August 24, 1853. They have three children, Mary Sophia Morris, Henrietta Annie and William George DeMontmorency. Religiously, Dr. Lowthian and his lady are members of the Protestant Episcopal Church.
GEORGE E. MERRY, hotel-keeper, was born in Oswego County, N. Y., June 3, 1828. He came with his parents to Pontiac Mich., when fourteen years of age, and learned the carpenter and joiner trade with his father. At nineteen he commenced for himself, and continued in that business fourteen years in that place. He was married when about twenty-two years of age to Miss Emily Dewey, of Pontiac. She died in 1854, leaving one infant son, Edgar. Mr. Merry's second marriage was to Miss Nancy M. Dewey, also of Pontiac, January 1, 1855. She was born near Pontiac, October 11, 1835. They have three children, Frederick, Charles and Frank. In the fall of 186, Mr. Merry came to Tuscola County and located land on Hickory Island. He settled his family there in 1861, and he came to Unionville and engaged in building for Mr. H. C. Marvin. He, with other help, built first a barn, then a bridge, then a store, and then another bridge, all in one season. In 1862 he brought his house from Hickory Island to where Unionville now is . He bought thirteen acres of land, one half of it cleared, for $20 per acre, finished clearing it, and set out an orchard south of where State Street now is, and also continued working at his trade. He went and worked in Bay City in the summer of 1864, until harvest time, then came home and harvested twenty-one acres of frosted wheat, but only got about forty-six bushels to the acre. In the fall of 1864, he took his family back to Pontiac, and he went out, as a government employee, to Duvall's Bluff, Ark., and began working at his trade, first for a few days at only $45 per month; soon his pay was advanced to $75 per month, and in about three weeks it was raised to $100 per month-and he was made second superintendent of the building department of government works. One pleasant day in February while there he went up White River on a boat with a large number of others to visit a certain farm. He and a comrade, Mr. Moore, were left on shore by the steamer, and hired a soldier to take them across in a small boat. When in the midst of the river, while the waves were dashing fiercely, the boat filled with water and swamped. Mr.. Merry and his comrade attempted to swim ashore. Mr. Merry with great difficulty swam across a heavy current in the river, reached a fallen tree toward shore, and looking back saw Mr. Moore in the current. He cried out to him, "Moore, pull for your life!" Moore answered, "Merry, I can't make it!" Merry shouted, "You can make it!" but just then Moore sank and drowned. Mr. Merry swam and waded onward into the overflowed cypress swamp some distance, found a partial support by a tree, and called loudly for help; and by the hired soldier who had now reached shore and emptied the boat, he was heard and rescued, but had nearly perished from exhaustion and cold. In the season following he returned to Unionville and opened a store of general merchandise, in which he continued some five years, when he sold that, and soon after opened a hotel on the site he now occupies. About that time he suddenly lost a swelling and contents worth some $1,500. He occupied his hotel some three years, then rented it for over two years, since which time they have occupied it steadily. The hotel is a fine three-story building beautifully situated in the center of the town with good sample rooms, and first-class accommodations for boarders and travelers, is furnished with commodious barn room for teams, and is conducted by kind and cheerful attendants, and with a steady view to the greatest comfort of the guests. Mr. Merry as a citizen is interested heartily in county and local prosperity, and is serving in his second term of office as a member of the board of trustees for Unionville.
ASA BURK was born in Ontario County, Canada, in 1829. There he remained until 1859, when he came to Michigan and settled in Lexington, Sanilac County, where he engaged in farming. After three years' residence he removed to Lapeer County and engaged in lumbering and farming, continuing until 1878, when he bought a hotel at North Branch, Lapeer County, which he operated about a year. His health failing, he was obliged to give up business and went to California where he so far recovered as to be able to resume business. In May, 1883, he bought and took charge of the Merry House, a new and commodious hotel in Unionville, Tuscola County. In 1851 Mr. Burk married Nancy Schell, a native of Canada. They have had ten children, of whom nine are living.
ROBERT H. RUSSELL, druggist and grocer, was born in Delaware County, N. Y., August 12, 1843. He was reared in his native State. His employment was chiefly agricultural, but he also wrought at the carpenter trade. On December 31, 1868, he was married to Miss Elizabeth Scheerder, also of Delaware County. In the fall of 1869 they removed to Missouri and spent three years; then they came to Unionville, and shortly after went back to Delaware County, N. Y. In the fall of 1874, Mrs. Russell died, leaving one daughter, Carrie E. In the spring of 1876, Mr. Russell returned to Unionville, and spent some time in carpenter work. On January 1, 1879, he entered the employ of Mr. J. S. Coy, and served in his store of drugs and groceries some four years. His second marriage was to Miss Ella J. Durfee, of Bay City, on January 13, 1880. She was born in Bay City January 13, 1862. They have two children, Cora Amilla and Elsie May, both born in Unionville. On September 15, 1882, Mr. Russell bought the mercantile enterprise of Mr. J. S. Coy, and since has conducted the business in groceries, drugs paints and oils, varnishes and medicines, with increasing patronage and gratifying success. Mr. Russell has been assistant postmaster
since 1879, and is serving as clerk of Columbia, and is a member of the board of trustees of Unionville. He also belongs to the order of the Knights of the Maccabees.
STEPHEN C. HAYES, farmer, was born in Oakland County, Michigan, April 7, 1833. He spent his youth chiefly in his native county. He first visited Tuscola County in 1850. Vassar then had only three or four dwellings and one boarding shanty. From there he went to Saginaw, then later, to Thunder Bay River, when the site of Alpena was not yet underbrushed. He spent some time there in fishing, and remained there alone, watching the fish and fishing apparatus for six weeks, and only saw four persons in the entire tiem, and, like Selkirk, "from center all around to the sea, he was lord of the fowl and the brute." The rest of the season he fished on Thunder Bay Island. Next he spent nearly two years more in Oakland, and after this nearly nine years in Saginaw, variously employed, and then settled in Wisner, Tuscola County. On July 12, 1864, he was enrolled in the fifth Michigan Veteran Volunteers, Company D, served his country until the close of the war, and was discharged July 19, 1865. He was only a few rods from President Jeff. Davis when that Confederate dignitary was captured. Here turned to Wisner in 1866, and on Feb. 20, 1867, he was married to Miss Mary J. Woodman, also of Wisner. She was born in Canada, Jan. 19, 1845. Their only son, Willie C., born Oct. 9, 1871, died of diphtheria Dec. 3, 1881. In 1875 Mr. and Mrs. Hayes came to Unionville, where they still reside. Very much of his time since then has been spent in the employ of H. C. Marvin, Esq. Mr. and Mrs. Hayes are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church.
GEORGE FORD, road master of the Saginaw, Tuscola & Huron Railway, was born in England, Jan. 16, 1833. He left his native country at the age of eighteen years and came to New York, and thence to Ohio and engage in the employ of the Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railroad Company of the track department. He spent some seven years on that and other roads and later, was about two years on the Detroit, Grand Haven & Milwaukee Road. After this he served as foreman on the grade of the Flint & Holly Road, and then as foreman in the track department. Thus he worked his way upward in the employ of the F. & P. M. Company and later became road master on a part of the Grand Trunk Road. After this he returned to the employ of the F. & P. M. Road and served as foreman of the track department, laying the track and ballasting the road from Coleman to Mount Pleasant. He also laid a large portion of the steel on the western division of the F. & P. M. Road. Next he engaged as foreman on the grade of the S. T. & H. Road, and broke ground three days before any other person, with a very small force the first week, but afterward ran up to as high as fifty men and ten teams, and so onward till the grade was nearly completed. He was then appointed to superintend the laying of the track, and twice afterward to ballast the road. This he has done so finely that the traveling public claim that the road is not excelled in smoothness and firmness by any road in the State. All this work, from the beginning of the laying of track has been done under the supervision of C. S. McMillan, Esq., superintendent of the road. At the same time Mr. Ford's steady employment and timely promotion by the company gives fitting expression of his skill, industry, integrity and trustworthiness in his chosen calling. He has literally worked his way up from the shovel to the responsible position of road master, which he now occupies. His present residence is in the pleasant and thriving town of Unionville.
EDWARD VAN DEMARK, farmer, was born in Tioga County, N. Y., Aug. 24, 1824. He was reared in his native state. His employment was chiefly farming. He came to Tuscola County, Mich., in the spring of 1854, and settled in what is now part of Columbia, then a part of Rogers. He had been married to Miss Margaret Bluer, also of Tioga County, Sept. 14, 1848. They have had eight children, six sons and two daughters. From Sebewaing to their place they came by a mere winding trail, with a hired ox team. Where Unionville now is, there was one log house. It was vacant and Mr. V. went into it with his family. There were about two acres chopped there but not cleared off. Thus, in those pioneer times, Mr. and Mrs. V. began opening a home in the forest for themselves and family, undergoing all the hardships and disadvantages incident to such brave undertakings. Mrs. M. Van Demark died in June, 1855. Mr. Van Demark's second marriage was to Miss Cordelia Wilson, of Unionville, June 6, 1856. She was born in Espyville, Penn., June 24, 1833. They have three sons and two daughters. Mrs. C. Van Demark also was a pioneer in Akron, and has shared the pleasures, the encounters, the romances of forest life and times from 1856 onward. Mr. Van Demark has 120 acres of land, with about seventy under cultivation. He also has a fruit-bearing orchard, an excellent dwelling and other buildings and inviting home comforts. Mr. V. has been a school officer some fifteen years, and school inspector about nine years. He was one of those who organized the township of Akron, was its first supervisor and has served four years. He records that in 1854 the place was nearly overrun with mice. He has once seen one and a half bushels of mouse bones in one heap, where they had been drowned in a kettle. He killed seven in one night that ran up his arm as he lay in bed. His best mouser that season was an owl, who used to catch them, skin them with his beak and devour their carcasses.
WILLIAM A. HAYES, farmer and carpenter and joiner, was born in Burton, Ohio, May 25, 1829. He was raised in his native State; learned his trade in his youth. He came to Bay City in 1856, and engaged in building dwellings among the trees then still standing where the business blocks of the city are now located. One year later he came to Tuscola County, and settled in what was then section 7, in Akron. he had been married Sept. 28, 1852, to Miss Sarah Baird, of Franklin, Ohio. They have had five children, Charles, George, John, Eliza, deceased, and Austin. When they first came to the place the only road was a narrow, underbrushed sleigh track. Wagons were not then in use. They, at times, had to walk logs and fences to keep out of the water. Mr. Hayes has worked devotedly at his trade since coming to the county. He has sometimes carried his tools five miles before breakfast to engage in the work of the day. He was the first carpenter in the place, but has not kept a record of his work as a builder. On August 10, 1864, Mr. Hayes enlisted in Company A, in the Twenty-ninth Michigan Infantry, and served his country in the suppression of the late rebellion, until discharged, in august, 1865, after the close of the war. During his service he suffered severely from typhoid pneumonia, but by the use of a self-selected remedy he finally recovered. Mrs. Hayes found it very afflictive and difficult to manage the home and family alone, but she and they braved the encounters nobly, and worked outside and raised corn and garden products for their sustenance and comfort. Mr.. Hayes now has thirty-five acres of land, with twenty-eight under fine cultivation, a large, thriving orchard and an inviting home. He has refused $60 per acre for his lands. Mr. and Mrs. Hayes are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church.
HENRY W. HESS, carriage maker and farmer, was born in Columbia County, Penn., Aug. 18, 1824. His grandfather, Henry W. Hess, Sr., was a soldier in the revolutionary war. His father, Christian Hess, Sr., was a soldier in the revolutionary war. His father, Christian Hess, and his father's brothers, were soldiers in the war of 1812. His maternal grandfather, Mr. Bisher, was a maker of violins. Mr. Hess left his native State in 1847 and went West to Chicago before Chicago had a railroad. He spent two years in the
West and over ten years in the South. Later he visited Tuscola County, Michigan, and in October, 1861, he enlisted in the First Michigan Engineers and Mechanics, Company F, and served his country over three years. In the winter of 1861 he took part in the campaign through Kentucky under General Thomas and fought in the battle of Mill Springs. He returned to Louisville, went thence to Nashville, thence to the battle of Shiloh and took part in the siege of Corinth. The rest of his time after this he was with the Western army. He and his comrades were discharged at Atlanta, Ga., but continued under arms until they came to Nashville, Tenn. The came to Michigan for final settlement. In December, 1864, Mr. Hess bought lands in section 1, Akron, now a part of Columbia, Mich. He cleared up his farm, beginning March 30, 1865. Later he was married to Miss Mary Ambruster, of Sebewaing. She was born in Ohio, Nov. 28, 1847. They have eighty acres of land, all under cultivation and pasture. They have a fine thriving orchard, all planted by his own hands. He has excellent buildings and a truly delightful home. He has on his farm a notable flowing well, over 104 feet deep, which when first opened, discharged several barrels of bituminous coal, and attracted large numbers of visitors from Saginaw, Vassar, Bay City and various other places. He has been overseer of highways several terms, and has served as school assessor for nine years. Religiously, he is an Episcopal Methodist. Mrs. Hess belongs to a German church in Sebewaing. In his travels and services in the Union Mr. Hess has visited Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey, Ohio, Indiana, Michigan, Wisconsin, Illinois, Iowa, Missouri, Kentucky, Virginia, Delaware, Maryland, District of Columbia, North and South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Florida, Louisiana, Arkansas, Tennessee, Indian Territory, Kansas and Texas. He has been in the principal cities of the Union. He has visited the Mammoth Cave in Kentucky, and slept in the house where President Polk was born. This rare entertainment he enjoyed when on his trip to the World's Fair in New York in 1853.
SAMUEL B. COVEY, retired farmer, was born in Dutchess County, N. Y., November 7, 1800. He spent his youth in his native State. On January 5, 1817, he and Miss Nancy Nowlin were united in marriage. Mr. S. B. Covey's children are Albert S., Hannah M., Jane, Betsy, John, Griffin S., Clarinda and Melinda, twins, Samuel E. and William N. In the spring of 1855 Mr. Covey located 940 acres of land in what is now Columbia, Mich. His family arrived in the fall following. They settled where Unionville now is. They came to their place, not by roads, but through the woods by blazed trees. They had to go to Vassar to mill and for their mail. Mr. Covey erected the first frame house and barn built between Watrousville and Sebewaing. In 1857 a mail route was established. Mr. Covey was the first postmaster of Akron postoffice, and served six years. Mr.. P. Ricker was the first mail carrier. Mrs. N. Covey died November 23, 1866. Mr. Covey's second marriage was to Mrs. Lois Hudson, of Akron, July 3, 1867. Mr. Covey has distributed his lands among his children. He has been justice of the peace twelve years and township treasurer two years. He has belonged to the Baptist Church since 1821, and Mrs. Covey has belonged about forty years. Mrs. N. Covey, also, was a member of that church.
JOHN COVEY, farmer, was born in Dutchess County, N. Y., May 4, 1827. He was reared in his native State and came to what is now the township of Columbia, Mich., before it was organized. In 1855 he began opening for himself and family a home in that dense but beautiful forest. He had been married February 25, 1850, to Miss Mary S. King, of Gilford, N. Y. She was born in that State June 13, 1828. They have two children, Griffin and Linnie, now Mrs. James Hinmon. they came to their place by way of Bay City, when it was just commenced, and when $5,000 would have bought the whole village, now the third city in the State. The land in their location was wet, but very rich. Oxen and sleds had been driven through from Sebewaing to Watrousville by a blazed trail. There was then no other road. Many articles of clothing and some of their provisions they had to bring all the way from Flint. They erected first a board shanty and lived in it five years, but he erected a frame barn, the first in the town, and had it ready for his first crop of wheat. His frame house was one of the first two built in the township. He assisted in organizing the township when there were only thirteen voters in it. He has 400 acres of land in sections 5, 8 and 14, with about eighty under cultivation, a thriving orchard of the best varieties of fruit, excellent buildings, and a truly pleasant home. Mr. Covey states that deer and other game were very plentiful in those early days. His gun secured the most of their supply of meats. He has killed 150 deer, two bears, and some other game. One of the bears he killed with his knife, while the bear held a large dog firmly in his teeth, never loosing his hold until he bled to death. Once Mr. Covey shot four deer with a single barreled rifle without stepping out of his position. Mrs. Covey, also, is skilled in using the gun. She has shot one large deer and various small game. Religiously Mr. and Mrs. Covey are members of the Baptist Church. Politically he has been a hfe long Democrat, and fraternally he is treasurer of the Northern Star Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons. He has served as a school officer and justice of the peace.
WILLIAM BRADY, farmer, was born in Herkimer County, N. Y., June 20, 1839. He came with his parents to Sebewaing, Mich., in 1854, and lived there until he attained his majority, employed in farming and other industrial pursuits. On May 6, 1862, he was married to Miss Catharine Baur, also of Sebewaing. She was born in Germany July 30, 1835. They have had six children, Rosetta, George, Simon, William H., Sylvester, deceased, and Charles S., also deceased. Mr. Brady and family cleared up a large farm in Sebewaing and resided there until 1875, when he bought 146 acres in section 5 and 6 in Columbia; and they have now about 110 acres under cultivation. They have over five acres of thriving orchard of apples, pears, plums, cherries, grapes and small fruits, an elegant dwelling and commodious farm buildings. Mr. Brady is raising the Percheron Norman breed of horses, imported from Illinois. He finds them a very superior breed, and has already six fine young animals, and hopes to soon place some on the market. Several Percheron stallions have been purchased by the United States Interior Department for the improvement to stock in the interior. Mr. Brady has also dealt largely in agricultural implements in his township. He has been highway commissioner and school director in Sebewaing and highway commissioner and justice of the peace in Columbia, and is a member of the school board in Unionville.
HUGH WILLSON, retired farmer, was born in Washington Township, Penn., August 29, 1802. He spent over half a century of his life in his native State, employed partly in farming and partly in blacksmithing. In October, 1854, he came to where Unionville now is, then a forest with Indian trails instead of roads, and began preparing a shanty for his family. In June, 1855, six members of his family arrived, and took possession of their new home. Mr. Willson had been married in 1829 to Miss Ann Collins, of Chenango, Penn. She was born there May 6, 1810. Their children are Cyrus, Cordelia, Andrew, Matilda, deceased, Sarah, also deceased, Isaac W., Samuel H., James F., Mina, and Edward L., who is also deceased. Mr. and Mrs. Willson have battled bravely and successfully with the privations and hardships of pioneer life, and with forest trees and water and frost; but they have lived until a beautiful
and thriving town has arisen in their midst, sustained by fertile country all around, and affording all the advantages of modern culture and religious privilege. They have been members of the Methodist Episcopal Church about thirty years. He has been class leader six or seven years, and over three years superintendent of Sabbath-schools. He has also been supervisor of Geneva. In politics he is a Republican. His four sons, Cyrus, Andrew, Isaac and James, all fought in the suppression of the late rebellion. Cyrus was wounded in the neck, in the shoulder and in the arm and now receives a pension for his services.
ISAAC W. WILLSON, farmer, was born in Crawford County, Penn., April 26, 1842. He came with his father's family to Tuscola County, Mich.,, in June, 1855, and worked on the parental home lands until about twenty-two years of age. In 1863 he bought 120 acres of land just west of Unionville, and cleared and put in sixteen acres of wheat. On June 10, 1864, he was enrolled in the First Michigan Infantry, Veteran Volunteers, Company A, and served his country until discharged July 9, 1865, after the Confederacy had been annihilated. He fought in the battles of the Yellow House, Hatcher's Run, the siege and capture of Richmond, and eight other engagements, closing up with the capture of General Lee and the Confederate army. He arrived at home from the service July 18, 1865, and later suffered about one year of severe illness, seemingly induced by his exposures in the service. On February 22, 1866, he was married to Miss Anna M. Pierce, of Sebewaing. She was born in Pontiac, Mich., April 18, 1837. They have three children, William E., Eben I. and Alanson C. Mr. Willson bought his land all on credit, and had only a steer, calf and an ax. The calf ran away and was lost, but the ax played slash with the forest. They began without a door in their dwelling or a table in their room, but by persistent effort and rigid economy they have secured for themselves cultured fields and fruitful orchards, a good dwelling, and a most inviting situation. During these pioneer efforts they have lost a barn by lightning, containing fourteen tons of hay and 300 bushels of wheat, besides other grains and valuable farming utensils, worth in all over $1,000, only receiving $554 insurance. Politically Mr. Willson is a Republican. Religiously they are Episcopal Methodists, and serve as official members in that church. They find their highest gratification in personal piety and social and religious progress.
RAYMOND P. CASE, farmer, was born at Saratoga Springs, N. Y., February 12, 1822. He was reared and educated in his native State, employed chiefly in agricultural enterprise. On December 9, 1851, he was married to Miss Adliza Weed, also of Saratoga Springs. She was born in Greenfield, Saratoga County, May 7, 1834. They have had two children, George, now deceased, and Francis Emmanuel. In the fall of 1854 they came to Genesee County, Mich. In the fall of 1855 they came to Watrousville, on their way to section 28 in Columbia, where he had previously bought 240 acres of land, but the country was so intensely wet and muddy that they were compelled to remain there until February, when they reached their new home in the forest, where there was not as yet a single clearing made. they moved into a vacant shanty near their lands, and prepared a shanty on their own place roofed with boards, and moved into it without any doors or windows, and finished it afterward. They had to bring the straw for their beds all the way from Watrousville. Mr. Case gave his watch for the bringing in of one load of his goods from that place. His last cent of cash he had paid out as taxes. they themselves, in coming in, rode on an ox sleigh as far as Mr. Santee's place. Two days were spent in getting that far. The next morning Mr. and Mrs. Case took their trunk on a hand sleigh and made their way through the woods bay blazed trees to their own place, over two miles distant. They earned their living and paid for their lands by dint of hard labor and strict economy. They lived thus in the forest seemingly alone, yet they were not lonely. They record that they enjoyed life as well then even in the midst of pioneer disadvantages and encounters, as they do now in the contrasted situation which they enjoy at present. Mr. Case now has ninety-five acres of land, with about fifty-six under cultivation and pasture. He has a thriving orchard of excellent varieties of fruit, an elegant dwelling worth some $1,500, and commodious out-buildings constituting a beautiful farm home. He assisted in the organization of the township, but has persistently declined all municipal office. Mr. Case has served several years as leader, and several as steward in the Methodist Episcopal Church.
EMANUEL L. STALEY, farmer, was born in Columbia County, Penn., September 25, 1835. He came from his native State to Columbia, Mich., just before he attained his majority, and with his father opened an improvement in section 20, and afterward resided there until 1873. They came by rail to Holly, by stage to Bridgeport, and on foot by the way of Tuscola, Vassar and Watrousville, and by a sled road from Morland's through the woods to their place. Once in coming from Sebewaing with oxen and wagon, a cooking stove and furniture and other goods, he had to ford the Wiscoggin Creek, when the water flowed over his boot-tops as he stood on the stove in the wagon. The team swam and drew the load after them, and all came through unharmed. On March 12, 1863, Mr. Staley was married to Miss Mary E. Kline, of Almer. She was born in Columbia County, Penn., August 3, 1844. They have had seven children. Those living are Wallace B., Marvin B., Sarah J., Clara, Louisa and Effie May. Two little loved ones are deceased. Mr. Staley now has eighty acres of land in section 32, and forty acres in section 28, where he now resides. He has in all nearly sixty acres of improvement, a large fruit-bearing orchard, good farm buildings, and a truly entertaining home. He has chopped over 100 acres of land in Columbia. he sold his former farm which he had improved by his own labor, for $4,000 ten years ago. he has been highway commissioner four years, and supervisor about fifteen years; and has served as chairman of the board of supervisors. He has also been three years superintendent of the poor for the county; and county surveyor four years. Politically Mr. Staley is an active Republican. Fraternally he is a member of Northern Star Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons, and glories in "Brotherly love, relief and truth."
REV. ISAAC SANTEE was born in Shickshinny, Penn., November 20, 1816. He received his education and early culture in his native State, worked some years as a blacksmith, and came to Tuscola County, Mich., in 1855. He bought nearly sixty acres of land, and settled in section 30, in Columbia, then a wet and frosty forest. In building his shanty they had to carry all the logs by hand and put them up without a team. They covered it with elm and black ash barks, and moved into it. He had been married December 10, 1837, to Miss Sarah A. Hess, of Columbia County, Penn. She was born there July 8 , 1818. They have had seven children, two sons and five daughters. They cleared the first three acres on their place entirely by hand. The first corn he planted was with an ax to open the ground-- he covered the hills with his foot. When he brought his family and baggage in from Watrousville, he had to leave the wagon stuck fast in the mud the first night of the journey, and also the second. Finally they carried the luggage the last forty rods by hand to get it to their place; yet he paid $8 dray bill. He often backed in their provisions from Sebewaing to their place. He has carried eighty-four pounds of supplies at one load. Mrs. S. A. Santee died of heart disease January 16, 1878, having been for many years a devoted member of the Methodist Episcopal Church.
Mr. Santee was converted February 24, 1840, and was soon after an assistant leader in the Methodist Episcopal Church. He became leader in 1842. He was licensed as an exhorter in 1844, and was licensed to preach by Rev. T. B. Sargent in 1853. He was ordained a local deacon by Bishop Janes in 1867, and local elder by Bishop Ames and others in 1872. He preached the first sermon ever preached in Akron at teh first religious gathering in the township. It was the funeral of a child, and was held at E. Van Demark's. Mr. Santee was guided through the woods to the place by a dog in pursuit of his master, who had gone in advance to the funeral. Since then he has married fifty persons, and has attended about 125 funerals. thus he has braved the toils and encounters of social and religious pioneer life in his community; but now, stated religious services are held in sight of his dwelling, and he has seen the waving forest change to fields of rare fertility, orchards of delicious fruit, and gardens blooming and beauteous. In his own pleasant home he has forty acres of improved land and ample supplies of fruit; and though infirm in health, he still labors for the good of others, waiting for the call of the Master to the home beyond the river. He has served as township clerk, and also as justice of the peace.
JOHN G. VANGIESEN, farmer, was born on Crusoe Island, N.Y., July 11, 1832. He came with his parents to Wayne County, Mich., in 1836. His youth was spent partly in farming and partly in rafting. He first visited Tuscola County in 1854. The next year he bought 160 acres of land in section 24 in Akron, and had some opening made soon after, and about the fall of 1858 he built a shanty, and began making further improvements. On January 1, 1867, he and Miss Samantha Santee, of Columbia, were united in marriage. She was born in Columbia County, Penn., July 15, 1848. They have had three children, Hattie, now deceased, Medora and Sadie. They now have ninety acres of land, with about fifty under cultivation, a fine fruit-bearing orchard of various fruits, and inviting home comforts. He has been highway commissioner and township clerk, and is school assessor in his district. In politics he is a thorough-bred Greenbacker. In his labors as a hunter and trapper he has killed some 500 deer, about a dozen wild cats (one of which was over five feet long) and not less than 100 foxes beside a number of mink and of martens.
WESLEY HESS, farmer, was born in Columbia County, Penn., November 24, 1824. His youth and early manhood were spent in his native State. He was employed chiefly as miller and farmer. He was married to Miss Melinda Kile, of Columbia County, in March, 1849. They had one son, Coenburg, born December 18, 1849. Mrs. M. Hess died in February, 1852. Mr. Hess and Miss Laura A. Piper, of Monroe, Penn., were married July 20, 1854. She was born in Berkshire County, Mass., April 13, 1835. They have had three daughters, Melinda A., the first child born in Columbia, Mich., now Mrs. I. Burger; Martha L., afterward Mrs. G. Smith, now deceased; and Mary E., now Mrs. H. Reed. Mr. Hess came to Columbia, Mich., in April, 1855, before the township was organized. He paid $100 in gold for the bringing in of his family and 400 pounds of baggage from Pontiac by stage to his place. he bought 200 acres of land in section 31, at ten shillings per acre. The cleared some forty-five acres and prepared them a comfortable home, and on February 10, 1863, he was enrolled i the service of his country, but was discharged in July, 1863, because of epileptic fits. These fits brought on sore eyes, which continued five years. This was followed by an accident which resulted in a permanent stiffness of one leg since 1868. In those early days Mr. Hess secured preaching in his dwelling for some three years by Rev. Mr. Crane and others of the Methodist Episcopal Church. He assisted in organizing the township and gave it its name; held the first election as was one of the first justices in the township. He served some five years as justice of the peace, and has been supervisor several terms. In politics he is a Democrat. In his sportsmanship he has killed over 700 deer, one bear, some wolves, a host of coons and numbers of small game. He has sold $74 worth of furs and skins in one season.
ALONZO W. WOOLEY, farmer, was born in Rutland, N. Y., September 10, 1844. He came with his parents to Genesee County, Mich., in 1854, and on April 1, 1869, they came to Akron and bought 110 acres of land in section 36, having about $1,200 of capital, and opened a home in the dense but delightsome forest. On August 16th, of that year, he was married to Miss Matilda Chapman of Watertown. She was born in Handy, Mich., December 31, 1849. They have two sons and three daughters. They built a small shanty on their place among the trees, and had to push the nearest trees with pike poles when felling them, to prevent them from falling on the dwelling. They braved the toils and hardships od pioneer life steadily and energetically, and by their own labor secured about seventy-five acres of improvement, enclosed with excellent fences, and on this a large fruit-bearing orchard of apples, pears, cherries, plums and small fruits, a good dwelling, two large barns and truly pleasant home enticements, which they have lately sold for $4,000. Their present home is on section 31, Columbia, where they have eighty acres of land, with seventy under cultivation, with good farm buildings, a plentiful supply of excellent fruits, and a most inviting situation, for which he gives $3,200, leaving a handsome cash margin for other investments.
AUGUSTUS GREENFIELD, teacher and farmer, was born in Russell, Ohio, adjoining the birth-place of the late President Garfield, November 19, 1840. He was reared and educated in his native State. In the spring of 1861, he enlisted in the Ohio Infantry, and served with the three months' troop in guarding rebel prisoners on Johnson's Island. Sandusky Bay, and was discharged at the end of his three months' term. In 1863 he was commissioned as first lieutenant of the Second Geauga Militia. In the spring of 1864 he enlisted in the One Hundred and Seventy-first Ohio National Guards, called out by Governor Todd for 100 days, and served until again discharged. He returned home sick, but soon recruited, and in the following fall he came to near Watrousville, Mich., and spent the winter with his father. In the spring of 1865 he enlisted in the Twenty-ninth Michigan Infantry, and served until September following when he received his final discharge, after the Confederacy had been quashed. In the following winter he taught school in Juniata. Next spring he bought 160 acres of land in section 33, Columbia. On March 3, 1867, he and Miss Latona B. Kline, of Almer, were joined in marriage. Their children are Byron and Mary Lulu. His place when he bought it was in a wild condition, and his improvements have been made by dint of labor and economy. Much of his time is spent in teaching, but he has about forty acres of his farm improved; has a thriving orchard and a pleasant home. He has served one year as township clerk, and several years as township superintendent of schools. He is also chairman of the Tuscola County Committee of the National Greenback Labor Party.
HENRY KING, farmer, was born in Luzerne County, Penn., May 3, 1834. He came from his native State to Columbia, Mich., in the spring of 1856, and bought eighty acres of land in section 31. He cut the first tick on his place, and erected the first frame house in the township. He hewed the studding and rafters, and split out the lath, made the shingles himself and drew the lumber from Heartt's mill, at Wahjamega. He occupied his home some six years without a companion, but on April 26, 1865, he was married to Miss Mary Jane Hayman, of Portsmouth. She was born in
Columbia County, Penn., February 25, 1847. They have had seven children; Ida S., Alice A., Lillie M., Lizzie J., Della A. and Latona E. are all living; little Bessie A. is now deceased. They continued the pioneer enterprise of clearing and building and improving their forest home, doing most of the work with their own hands; and now the forest has disappeared, and they have about seventy-five acres of their land under fine cultivation, about three acres of thriving orchard of apples, pears, plums, cherries and small fruits, and elegant dwelling and commodious barns, constituting a most delightful farm home. When they first came to their place they had to cut their roads on the ridges or high strips of land. It took about two days to go to Sebewaing with an ox team and return; and the same to Watrousville, then their nearest postoffice. Mr. King is a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church. He has been commissioner of highways four years, township clerk one year and school director, six years. In politics Mr. King is an active Democrat.