Thanks to Barb Voss for her time and volunteering to transcribe
these Pioneer Biographies / Obituaries. Her efforts are greatly appreciated.

ELIJAH ANDREWS, was born in Stark County Ohio, Perry township, September the 23 1823. Moved with his parents to Wayne (original states Wane) County Ohio in 1834. Was married to Lucyette Hale in 1850 and moved to Fulton County in 1851

LUCYETTE (HALE) ANDREWS was born in Chautauqua County, New York February 29, 1832 and moved with her parents to Ohio in 1838 settled in Copley Center, Summit County, was married to Elijah Andrews in Akron May the 16 1850 and moved to Fulton County in 1851.

Back to Index
Tedrow, Ohio
July 10, 1893

GIDEON AYERS, was born in Wayne County April 29, 1834 and died September 9th 1892. At the age of three years he came to reside in Fulton County and remained here until 1851 when he went to California and remained in the west fourteen years. Four years and eight months of this time he served in the War of the Rebellion. In 1866 he returned and has made Fulton County his home ever since.

Respectfully Eliza Ayers

Back to Index
ELLIOTT BAYES, a pioneer was born in Clinton Township in 1840 and was a son of William W., and Mary (Tedrow) Bayes who were born in Somerset County, Pennsylvania and married in Holmes County, Ohio and settled in Clinton, Fulton County in 1837 with one daughter Elizabeth. They had a family of eight children, seven of whom are now living. Elizabeth A., Jane, Elliott, Isaac E., enlisted. Mary died in 1869 aged fifty four years and William W., died in 1885 aged seventy six years. 

William W., purchased farms from the government, one of 160 acres he paid $1.50 per acre, he owned 240 acres in all. William W’s father was Thomas who settled in Clinton and was a Justice of the Peace and also held other minor offices. William was a prominent and influential man very active in all church affairs, services being held at his house until they could find larger quarters. The town’s elections were also held at his log house for several years, such was the public spirit of the man. Elliott Bayes was married in 1875 to Frances M. Fraker a daughter of Squire William and Nancy A. (Krytzer) Fraker of Clinton Township. They have had a family of five children; Helen, Inez, Harry W., H. Blaine., and Florence M. Mr. Bayes has a farm of 85 acres and owns a part of the old homestead farm he enlisted in the 130th Ohio regiment on the 100 days call 
and served for 

Back to Index
The death of Uncle Tommy Bayes, as he was familiarly called occurred at his residence one mile west of town on Monday last. (May 6, 1889 – is penciled in) His death was not unexpected as he has been in feeble health for a long time. Mr. Bayes was born in Somerset Co., PA, May 19th 1806. He came with his parents to Ohio about the year 1816. He was married to Lamenta Swan November 6th, 1834 and moved to Fulton County in 1837, settling on the present site of Wauseon, his farm including nearly all of what is now the business portion. The house in which he lived while owner of the town site was situated on the east end of what is now the residence lot of Andrew Clark, fronting on Leggett Street and is remembered by the early settlers. He sold the track to Barber, Sargent and Leggett the proprietors of the town site and purchased the home where he has since lived and where he died. He was the father of ten children, six of whom survive him. His wife died some years ago. He was a man strictly upright and conscientious, doing what he believed to be right and just regardless of consequences. Possessing a nobility of character attained by few. He was a member of the M. E. church for 58 years his consistency and faithfulness on the line of duty being a model for many. The esteem in which he was held by the community was attested by the large attendance at his funeral which was held at his late residence on Wednesday last nearly 100 teams being in the procession. Rev. J. H. Fitzwater conducted the services and the remains were interred in the Bayes Cemetery.

Back to Index
WILLIAM W. BAYES, was born in Somerset County, Pennsylvania October 1st 1809 and died at his home near Wauseon, Ohio November 1st 1885 at the ripe old age of 76 years. The span of a life, how briefly told, but a life like his is not hidden when mother earth receives its fellow dust – a man – such a man as he does not cross to live when the pall of death settles upon the brow. Life goes out but he lives on in pleasant memories, noble of deeds, active labors, sweet mementos of living memories, grateful hearts and only in the rounded measure of eternity can such a life be measured and estimated at its time worth.

 William Bayes parents when he was but eight years old moved to Holmes County, Ohio. In the year 1834 he was married to Miss Mary Tedrow and three years after marriage in September 1837 he, with his young wife, came to what is now Fulton County and what most this county had been at that early date. My own memory dates back to a period at least 15 years later and what a vivid picture is presented to my mind of great forest, cleared patches, hives and sores, log cabins with stick chimneys, muddy roads, impossible roads and no roads – swamps and soils, bone peckers, cow bells and mosquitoes, corduroy, blue jeans, colic and drilling, bare foot men and women or with old shoes strapped to their feet with cow hide for Sunday. At the time of the arrival of our brave young couple into what is now Fulton County, roads were hardly known, by ways were cut to suit the occasion, cabins were few, school houses almost unknown and the nearest mill at Maumee. Going to mill was attended with more hardship and fatigue in those days than a trip to New York now. 

His cabin was among the very first ever erected in Clinton township, the forest fell before his axe and soon a little cleared spot, constantly enlarging, developed into the pioneer farm, small fields, rail fences and plenty of stumps but fertile soil always rewarding the husbandman (provided the lakes of water soaked away in time for the seed sowing and planting). Mr. Bayes was among the fore most to look after the intellectual and religious needs of the neighborhood and continued largely to these ends. His house was the home of the pioneer preacher and for a time, at least, his cabin was used for church services. The Methodist Church in the county round about owed much of its prosperity to his efforts and in turn yielded to him a rich foliage of enjoyment. How those pioneer Methodists enjoyed their church privileges, how they went to meeting in log cabins, school houses or barns and quarterly meeting occasions, how their log cabins were filled with the worshiping guest come perhaps from many miles away. Beds were made upon the floor so thick that they almost touched each other. 

I will remember the time when the deceased, Uncle Tommy Bayes and others, used to stop at my fathers log cabin, on those ever memorable occasions and what found joyous happy meetings they had, what happy lives were theirs too. The whole life of Mr. Bayes was that of the typical pioneer one among this foremost in every good word and work, a teacher in doing kindly deeds and noble acts. To Mr. and Mrs. Bayes were born eight children, all of them living but one and all of them among our last and most useful citizens. 

The wife of his youth died June 7, 1869 after which sad event he lost much of his former interest in his surroundings and the activities of life; always experiencing much joy in his church relationship however. His interest never stopped when talking of his early struggles and he seemed especially joyous when talking of the pioneer preachers, especially Herbert and P. Elder Brooskenridge and some others whose names I do not now remember.

He was stricken with paralysis in December 1883 and hence forward was almost helpless and a constant sufferer until death which came nearly two years later. “Uncle Bill” familiarly so called by old and young, was one of a few old men whom the writer always especially remembered for their just, pure, upright lives and we gladly pay this memento of respect to the man. Whose life was always one of pure motives and whose memory is a perpetual benediction. Kind, pure generous hearted, old friend, hence! And farewell! 

Unknown Author

The following is the shortened version that actually appeared in the local newspaper

Death of William W. Bayes
William W. Bayes was born in Somerset County, Pennsylvania October 1st 1809. His parents, when he was eight years old, moved from Pennsylvania to Holmes County, Ohio. In 1834 he was married to Mary Tedrow. To them were born eight children, all now living but one. In September 1837, he moved to what is now Fulton County and settled on the farm on which he died. His cabin was among the very first built in Clinton Township. He entered heartily into the work of clearing away the forest and developing the resources of the country. He early saw the necessity of school and religious training of the children and did all in his power in that direction. His house was the home of the pioneer preachers and his cabin was for a time the church building. By his influence and liberal support in the early settling of the county, the M.E. Church is largely indebted for its commanding influence in this community. His wife died June 6th 1869, from that time he lost interest in the activities of life. In December 1883 he was stricken down by  paralysis from which he never recovered. After a sever illness of eight weeks he died November 1st 1885 at the ripe old age of 76 years, 1 month and 1 day, loved by all who knew him.

Back to Index
MRS. MARY BULER - born in Orleans County, Vermont February 25, 1821. Moved to this county in the spring of 1834, married to Mr. D.L. Buler March 1838, resided on a farm in Royalton and Amboy Townships until 1881 when they moved to Wauseon where she resided to the date of her death, March 20, 1889, at the age of 68 years and 23 days. Mrs. Buler was the mother of five children, only two of whom are now living; Mrs. Addie Buck of Royalton and Mr. Louis Buler of Delta this county.

Mrs. David Lewis Buler (nee SKINNER)
See bio for David L. BULER

Back to Index
GILMAN CHEADLE, died December 17th 1891 in his 85 year. He was born in Morgan County, Ohio March 10, 1807. His parents came from Vermont a few years prior to his birth and were of English decent. 

He was left an orphan at an early age, dependent on his own exertions. This rough struggle with adverse circumstances, left its impression on his character. While developing the aggressive persistent combative elements to struggle successfully with the world, the more noble and finer sentiments of the mind and heart suffered irreparable loss. Never the less his life was brightened by many deeds of benevolence, and needing hands stretched out were not passed by unheeded. He married at the age of 21 years after which he engaged in running a flat boat on the Muskingum and Ohio rivers. Where in a few years by active industry and close application to business, combined with economy, he had saved several hundred dollars, with which, with his young wife and children, he started in the fall of 1834 for the North West country. Winter coming on he stopped in Marion Ohio till spring, when he again pushed on to the Maumee. 

He put up long enough in Perrysburg to go to Wapaukonetta to the U.S. Land office, where he entered 440 acres of land, which he had never seen, and in what is now Fulton County.

Here, his life work commenced in earnest. Enduring hardships of which we know very little, but with which all pioneers endured uncomplainingly, born up by the hope of finally seeing their work crowned with success.  Here he cleared up a large farm in that dense forest known as the “Six Mile Woods,” mainly by the strength of his own good right arm. He made a comfortable home for wife and little ones.  The orchard which he planted have furnished fruit for children, grandchildren and great grandchildren, and the maple groves still remains that have furnished sweet for all. 

Here perhaps his happiest days were past, watching the development of his children and the improvement of the country. In after years he added to his already large farm so that he was enabled to give to each his six remaining children, (three having died in infancy, and one in early manhood) 80 acres of land. 

In the winter of 1871 he removed to Wauseon which became his permanent home and the remainder of his property he invested in real estate in that place. He was rather unfortunate in his last few business transactions but left ample means to satisfy every legal claim and a competency for his aged widow. 

In 1828 he married Susannah Rockey Feller who patiently labored by his side, for over sixty years, enduring privations, encouraging him with her sympathy and rejoicing in his successes. 

She is now tenderly cared for by her daughter Mrs. R.S. Sharpe on what was part of their original farm.

Back to Index
Ottokee March 18th 1889
Mr. D.W. H. Howard

Dear Sir:
In the proceedings of the Fulton County Pioneer meeting held in Wauseon February 22nd 1889, I noticed in the list of deceased members of the association, for the past year that the name of my mother Phebe L. Cobb, who died March 16th 1888, was not included. Thinking perhaps that it was an oversight you will do me a favor to include her name with the rest as I am quite sure she was a member of the Pioneer association and if such her death ought to be noticed by them. 

I remain yours truly,
A.H. Cobb

Please enter the name and we will see to it at the meeting 22 Aug.

In Memoriam – Phebe Cobb nee: Knapp

Mrs. Phebe L. Cobb was born Oct 6th 1820 in New Fairfield, Connecticut –
was married to O.A. Cobb in New York City November 1841 – came, with her husband, to what is now Fulton County in May 1846; died March 16th 1888.She was the mother of six children, three died early. Ernest, born 1843, enlisted in the war of the Rebellion. He was discharged in 1863 from disability; he died in March following soon after reaching home. Four times she had yielded a loved one to the Angel of Death. 

Settled in Ottokee in 1846:
Can the young women of today, looking over this county, with its broad acres of cultivated lands, its pleasant homes, filled (many of them) with not only the convenience but luxuries of life, comprehend what it was for a young wife to leave home and friends in the East and come here forty-four years ago?

What a demand for courage and self-sacrifice for one like her, with a loving heart, 
tender sympathies, a keen appreciation of all beautiful things, and insatiable thirst for intellectual advancement, to leave the enjoyments and advantages found in the neighborhood of schools, colleges and public libraries, and go with her husband to build a new home in the then, far away wilds of Ohio.

Let the mind drift back to that period - forty-four years ago – we stand in the shadow of a forest, broken by patches of clearing around the rude cabins of the first settlers. Blazed trees mark the roads between settlements, winding around swamps and ravines, only the east and west roads being regularly laid out. No outlet for water falling on a large area of land, it stands in bogs and marshes filling the atmosphere with miasma poison that spreads disease in early cabin. 

Toledo, then only fourteen years from its first settlement, was but a dirty little town remarkable for nothing save its unwholesome atmosphere floating up from the filthy Maumee, whose sluggish water “Did cream and mantle like a standing pool”.  The air of that little city by the lake did not then, as now, palpitate with the shriek of engines and the roll of ponderous freights. It stood in comparative silence, its wharf being the one important place of the town. For all direct eastward travel embarked there and to that point came a great share of the westward travel, landing there with their goods and shuttles and pursuing their course from hence with teams to their destinations. 

It was there that Brother Cobb’s party disembarked; the importance of the dock to that town can be estimated from the fact that he was charged $12.00 for landing his horses and wagons upon it.  We think of Toledo now as out a few minutes distant from us but then the now dragging of a team over wretched roads with the “Six Mile Woods” to pass through in the trip, made it a dread, even, for stalwart men.

They arrived in Ottokee in May 1846, four years before the place was named, and four years before there was a Fulton County. They immediately commenced the building of a frame house, the first one erected for miles around and moved in before doors or windows were made. It was a manes of severe trials, Sickness, privations, hardships, such as only pioneer life can know. What pin can ever record the struggles, the sufferings the heart aches, attending the settlement of a new country? 

The miscreant rising from standing water and decaying vegetation brought all forms of malarial disease, not only to their family but to all the families in reach of them. But such trials developed the grandest womanhood; there was courage, strength, and soul in it, a beautiful unselfishness that almost commands our worship. 

The first little school house was completed on the corner, just east of D. Number’s Store; (the site should be appropriately mark). Mrs. Cobb sufficiently recovered from her first year’s sickness, taught the first school in it, in 1847. Beginning her labors there for the community, her whole life was one of helpful blessings to all who knew her. Her fine appreciation of intellectual enjoyments, made the privations of isolated life more keenly felt. “Dearly bought the hidden treasure, 
finer feelings can bestow hearts that vibrate sweetest pleasure, thrill the deepest notes of woe.” But as fire refines and brightens the golden ore so trial enlarges and enriches the soul. 

With the love and devotion of a faithful wife and mother she hushed the yearning for the old house life and set earnestly to work to make the new one enjoyable. How grandly well she succeeded the many who have shared her hospitality can attest.  She was loved and respected by all who knew her. An effort to emulate her virtues will be the highest tribute we can pay to her memory.

By Julia P. Aldrich

Transcribing note: This was written in 1889

Back to Index
ELIZABETH (nee DICKSON) STRUBLE, (married name Struble)
Elizabeth Dickson was born May 18th 1816 in Bazetta Township Trumbull County Ohio.  Left an orphan by the death of her father at the age of 12 years she not only supported herself but aided her mother in caring for a large family until her marriage with William Struble which occurred August 20th 1835. 

Lived in Trumbull County until September 1846 when they removed to Henry County, now Fulton, then almost an unbroken wilderness and there endured all the hardships incident to pioneer life. Much credit is due the deceased for her courage and perseverance in battling the trials and troubles that beset them on every hand. Slow to choose the privations of a western life, when once the step had been taken nothing could turn her from the determination to build a home for her children. Success finally crowned their efforts and a large farm was improved on which they lived until April 1881 when they removed to Wauseon where they resided until her death which occurred December 26th 1889. She was the mother of 11 children 6 of whom with her husband survive her. Her last illness was long and severe but was borne with Christian fortitude and as she assured her life partner she was only going to her Happy Home. 

So-“Call not back the dear departed, 
Anchored safe where storms are o’er 
on the border land we left her 
soon to meet, to part no more.”

Back to Index
(logo on top of letter reads)

Wauseon, Ohio April 8th 1890

Mr. Thom. Mikesell:

Dear Sir, at your request I will have you the following;
Mary Domitio, oldest daughter of John and Marieane Scott, was born in Clinton Township, Fulton County Ohio, July 25th 1840, Married C. Domitio October 2nd 1859, Died April 2nd 1889. She was mother of four children, her two first children died and two youngest children and husband are a living. 

This is not as much of a history of deceased as you probably wanted, but it is all I can give you at present.

Respectfully yours
C. Domitio

Back to Index
STEPHEN ELDREDGE, was born in Stark County, Tesearoyas (Tuscawarus) Township, Ohio on the 19th of December 1824 being about four miles south of Massilon in 1832 or 33, moved with his parents to Medina, now Summit County, Bath Township, Ohio in the spring of 1839, Moved with an older brother to Wood County, Ohio where Bowling Green now is built on the 9th day of June 1846. I was married to Miss Diantha P. Hunter at Bowling Green by the Rev. W. M. Pinters in the spring of 1855 I moved with my family to Fulton County Ohio our family then consisted of five children, three of them now living. Farming has been my occupation, have been a member of the M.E. Church since I was eighteen years old, average weight 175 - height five feet 8 inch

By Stephen Eldredge

Back to Index
Another Pioneer Gone
George Ely, an old pioneer of Brady Township, Williams County, died February 28th, 1889: aged 77 years. Mr. Ely was born in Northumberland County Pennsylvania in 1812 and with his parents came to Knox County Ohio in 1826, and in 1833 was married to Elizabeth Folck and in 1835 settled in Brady Township. He entered his land there in an almost unbroken forest, there 
being only two or three settlers in the neighborhood that had preceded him. 

He cleared up this tract of land for a home and has resided upon it ever since, a term of 54 years. His farm lies within a quarter of a mile of the Fulton County line and about one mile from the Franklin M.E. Church.

He raised a family of 7 children to manhood and womanhood upon this home and buried 4 children in their infancy. L.G. Ely of Franklin Twp., is the oldest of this family. Mrs. Riddle, now one of the teachers of our public school, is the 3rd daughter. The two oldest daughters live near the old homestead, in Williams County and the two youngest daughters live in Kansas. A son, George, was a member of Co. C, 100th Ohio Regt., and was killed in the battle at Atlanta, August 6th 1864, at the age of 20 years. 

Mr. Ely assisted in the organization of Brady Twp., being one of 12 voters at the first election held. He voted a Whig ticket – the other eleven voted the Democratic ticket.  He has voted the Republican ticket since the organization of the party. With the single exception of one twp. election he has voted at every election ever held in Brady Township. He subscribed for the first volume of the New York Tribune, when it was founded by Horace Greeley and continued his subscription to that paper without a break, up to and including the present year.

Although he never connected himself with any church, he was a believer in the atonement, a man of liberal religious views, of strict integrity and charitable almost to a fault. He was loved and respected by all who knew him.

During the earlier history of Brady Township, he held nearly all the different offices of the township. He also held the office of Commissioner and of County Auditor of Williams County. 

Among the large concourse of people attending his funeral were many of the older settlers of the community. There were about 75 relatives in attendance. The funeral services were conducted by Revs. Baumgardner and Stockton, of West Unity and his remains laid to rest in the Franklin Cemetery. His wife, now 75 years of age and with whom he lived and enjoyed life a little over 56 years, remains with her children, to mourn his loss.

Back to Index
WILLIAM FRAKER, was born in Wayne, County Ohio, January 19th 1822 and died at Pettisville, Fulton County, Ohio, February 15th 1891. When but a boy 14 years old he came to this county with his parents, then an almost unexplored wilderness and located near Delta. At the age of twenty he moved to Clinton Township and settled upon a farm in Sec. 18, where he lived until within three years of his death. 

In 1844 he married Lydia A. Fashbaugh who died about three years afterwards, leaving two children. In 1850 he again married Nancy A. Kritzer who with six children still survives him. 

Mr. Fraker, was a self made man, of remarkably, clear perception and excellent judgment; and was universally esteemed as a man of high character and he died equally lamented as he was beloved, whilst living by all who knew him He held many offices of trust; and was one of the first pioneer school teachers in the county, teaching in the little log cabin school houses. With puncheon floors and school furniture made of the same material. 

Hunting and fishing was one of his favorite amusements and probably no pioneer in the county could relate more thrilling adventures, and hair breath escapes. In the wiles of the county, than he could.

In politics, he was conservative; in religion he was liberal; remembering the great rule to do the greatest good to the greatest number. He was a member of the Masonic order for over a quarter of a century. He lived to see nearly all the first settlers pass away and the growth and full development of what was once a wilderness, changed into beautiful farms and happy homes. 

How often, have many of us been welcomed by his kindly voice and hardy hand grasp wherever met. How greatly is he missed by all who knew him; and his memory will be justly honored, by those who emulate his worthy career.

By Elliot Bayes

Back to Index

The unfortunate Queen Katherine of England, wife of Henry the eighth said “After my death I wish no other herald, no other speaker of my living actions to keep mine honor from corruption, but such an honest chronicles as Griffith.”  Three or four years before his death, the late George Gasche said to the writer, “After I am gone if any one think it worth while to write an obituary notice for me I do not want them to tell how many dollars I gathered together nor how many acres of land I acquired, but rather to tell what I did to help make the world better.”

George Gasche was the fourth son of Dr. Carl (Charles) Gasche a Prussian Surgeon of good standing in his native country. The subject of this sketch was born in Witzlar, Prussia May 1st 1819. Died January 24th 1895, aged 75 years 8 months and 23 days. 

Dr. Gasche brought his family to America when George was thirteen years old, locating first in Cumberland Co., Penn., where George was apprenticed to a shoemaker, serving this man two years. His father then removed to Holmes Co., Ohio and located in an 80 acre farm which this son helped to clear. He worked at his trade of evenings to help secure the money needed to pay for the land in this county which was to be his permanent home. In 1840 at the age of 21 years he purchased the farm he owned at the time of his death. Owing to the material condition of the country at that time he did not locate here until 1855. But he came each year and worked a month or more improving his land and getting it ready for occupation, making the journeys back and forth on foot. 

On New Years day 1847 he married Catherine Honeberger Gasche, the widow of his brother William also taking the care of his brother’s children, Eliza and William. They bought a little home in Holmes Co., and cleared the land and lived there eight years.  This house was then sold, their little store of goods stowed away in a canvas covered wagon. The pioneers present are all familiar with the mode of travel of that day and know something of the condition of the roads over which they were obliged to pass and the weather they might expect, when it is told that they started on their journey on the 12th April 1855 and arrived at their destination the 18th.

It took industry, much hard labor, and such economy as his children know little of, to make the comfortable home so well known to most of you. He worked faithfully and lovingly to provide each of his children with a home. He said frequently that he did not want a child of his to be compelled to practice the rigid economy and self-denial that he was obliged to when he began to do for himself after he attained his majority.  He was brought up under the teaching of the Lutheran Church.
Also after he began going to school a Catholic priest went to the schools twice a week to instruct the children in the doctrines of the Roman Church. The parents were careful to explain to their children wherein Luther and other Reformers thought the Amish Church had substituted their own rituals for the teaching of the Bible. The result of his early teaching and his own study on the subject was that he believed in the “Fatherhood of God and the Brotherhood of Man”.

When his father settled in this country in 1832, Jackson was President. The father said to his older sons “We will join no political party until we have had time to study the political history of the parties of the country. Dr. Gasche had carefully studied the history of the United States before he decided to emigrate and before the law permitted him to become a citizen he had made himself and older sons familiar with the political history of the nation.

In his early years George Gasche was generally classed as a Democrat yet he was always an independent voter. When his party nominees or the platform did not suit him, he would vote for that which did suit him, in whatever party he found it. Always anxious to promote the well being of the masses and willing to lend a helping hand to any society or organization which proposed to do this work, it was to be expected by all who knew him best that he would become a staunch Granger when he joined that society when it was first organized in Wauseon. Members of that Society know how faithfully he did his part to make that organization a power for good to all classes. I do not know of a just cause which the Grange campaigned which did not receive the hearty support of George Gasche. 

He served one term as commissioner, being elected to this office by the independent voters of the county. For several years he was a member of the County Board of Agriculture, favoring those measures which stood for the improvement of Agriculture, Education and good morals. Being strong in the faith that told abstinence from intoxicating liquors and narcotics was beneficial to the individual, and that mandatory prohibition was the state and nations best way of regulating and controlling of intoxicants and narcotics for drink purposes, it was only natural that he should ally himself with the Prohibition Party. He looked upon a political party as only a means by which men declared their belief as to what set of principles they wanted embodied in the laws of the state and nation. His political maxim was the greatest good to greatest number of people. Not being an aspirant for office he said he could always register his convictions on morel questions in his ballot.

He once said “Those children honor their parents most who give them the least cause for grief or shame. I have always tried to live so that when all of this earth is past, and I meet my mother in the future world I can say to her, if it is necessary for children to say such things there with a clear conscience, mother I have never dishonored your teaching and example, nor brought disgrace upon my fathers name.”

This man was a great lover of the beautiful in nature and art and music. He said to me when we started to the World’s Fair, “We can not see and hear all that is there. I want to see the best pictures, the fine laces and porcelains and Italian stationary, the flowers and hear the best music. If there is any time left we will give it to some of the useful exhibits.” He was touched most by the paintings of home life and the music that touched the affection and home life. 

He was a sturdy, rugged, courageous man and yet he was singularly tender and affectionate, without being demonstrative. Only those who knew him most intimately knew how careful he was to avoid everything that might hurt any ones feelings.

“The fine spirit cannot always sleep in dust,
Whose essence is ethereal, they may try
To darken and degrade it; it may rust 
Dimly while, but it can not wholly die; 
And, when it wakens, it will send its fire 
Intense, forth and higher.”

Written by Eve (Gorsuch) Gasche wife of 
William Gasche the stepson and nephew of George.

Back to Index
 MICHAEL HANDY is the subject of this sketch, became a citizen of Fulton County in the year 1840 (It was Pike Twp in Lucas Co.  then)  and resided here continuously until his death, less than a year ago, and was therefore, one of  our citizens for upwards of 45 years, a third longer than the average years of man, and more than half the duration allotted by Holy Writ to him. He was a native of New York and was born about the time of the outbreak of our second war with England.  Deprived by death of a mother's assistance, counsel, and love at the age of ten years, he may truly be said to have been abandoned to fight life's battle alone.  How he grew to manhood's estate and succeeded in acquiring an education which well fitted him to discharge with dignity, honor and success the duties of a learned and influential profession may best be left to the consideration of those, who like him, similarly situated, have won for themselves in society, high and respected names, and dying shall leave, as he did, an honored record and the memory of having served well their day and generation.

 Mr. Handy successfully served and benefited society in three ways: as a teacher, as a farmer, as a lawyer.  Which of the three is the most exalted and useful I do not pretend to decide;  but I do know that to act well one's part in any position or in any capacity, is where honor is to be found.

 In 1836 he was married to Mary Ann Bryant, a most excellent woman, and the best of help mates, the mother of his children, and the sharer of all his joys and grief for 44 years.  Together they came to Fulton County, then unformed and the land of self-denial, of privation and of hardship; wild, sparsely settled and extending but a savage and unpromising welcome to the hardy pioneers who ventured into the wilderness of North-western Ohio.  But along with others, not many of whom remain among us he confronted all the ills and inconveniences of a life almost primitive in its conditions, and grew and thrived with the North-west, winning a name for enterprise, integrity and ability throughout all its borders until at the date of his death, none among us was better known or more highly esteemed than Squire Handy.

 Mr. Handy probably came first into public notice as a school teacher, and we all whose memory runs back to the early history of Fulton County, know he was a good one   But alone and coordinate with his duties as a teacher he farmed, he labored and cleared a farm, interspersing these agreeable and useful duties by occasionally trying a suit at law in some Justice's Court, or pettifogging as it is sometimes called.  In 1852 he was admitted to the bar and became a full-fledged lawyer, practicing continually from that time until his death, and always rated, and deservedly, among the foremost attorneys at law at the Fulton County Bar.

         As to official position, that was something to which he never aspired, and although endowed with native gifts beyond the common run, and adding hereunto the learning and acquirements of many years of laborious research and study both in the domain of the law and the fields of general literature, yet he was not forward to seek political preferment choosing rather the arduous duties of his profession.  Hence he held but few offices, but all of them which he did hold, he honored. 

        In disposition he was genial, kind and sunshiny, never crowding or imposing on any body, but with that true and manly sense of self worth, which would not brook imposition.  What is commonly called a grumbler he was not.  There is ‘bread and work for all’ he often said.

        Less than a year ago, as to his bodily presence, he passed away; but his memory, that of a hale, hearty and true man, still survives with us.  We miss his hearty greeting, his buoyant, sunshiny ways.  In our County Courts,  at our Pioneer, and all our citizens meetings, his sturdy, genial voice is stilled forevermore; for us all , the light of his eyes gone out; but we can not and should not forget his excellent name, his sterling manhood and all the good of that life so well and so worthily spent for the forty-six years of arduous undertaking and labor among us, the friends, neighbors, and colaborers of his pioneer days; all indeed of whom in but a few years more will be spoken of only as the Fulton  ……? 
                                     -----   a line is missing here--------------
and the night of death and the rays of the eternal morning with their shadow and glory soon must come.

Back to Index
MARCUS H. HAYES, was born in Bloomfield, New York on June 7th 1822, he lived there until he was 12 or 13 years of age, at which time his father moved to Brunswick, Medina Co., Ohio, they lived there about one year. The family then came to Litchfield in the same county, in this township he lived until he was about 21 years of age, but being of an energetic enterprising nature he wanted a larger field and the west at that time offering great opportunities. He bought a team and went west to the State of Iowa, here he engaged in teaming for a year and then returned east and married Caroline McKenzie, this was in the year 1843. During the following year he with his young wife sought a house in the western states and located in a town called Guttengurg Iowa. Here Mr. Hayes engaged in the mercantile business and did an extensive and profitable trade exchanging his goods and wares for furs. I am unable to say how long he lived in Iowa but it must have been 12 or 13 years, he then came to this county and was twice elected county Sheriff and is always spoken of as an able and efficient officer. He was one of the moving spirit of anything that he engaged in he was a man of more than ordinary ability. He was strictly conscientious in all his dealings, a friend you could depend upon and the best of a neighbor in short his record is one to be proud of. We ought as bands of pioneers and without doubt do cherish the remembrance of this one of our beloved band who with us faced the privations and hardships incident to a new country. The ties of friendship are more closely drawn around this band than those who now live to enjoy the fruits of their labor. May we each so live and act that when we to shall pass away that the verdict may be “we have lost a good man or a good woman” as the case maybe. For the good mothers who lives in these early times deserve just as much if not more praise than the men and we can truly say that when Bro. M. H. Hayes “passed to that beyond from which no traveler returns” we lost a good man.

Back to Index
To the pioneers of Fulton Co., Ohio

Our Brother Charles Harrison is dead the deceased with his family came from the State of New York in the year 1846 and settled in York Twsp. On the farm where he resided till his death September 19th 1891 aged sixty seven years.

Brother Harrison was genial and of very industrious habits, a kind husband and father always a true friend in time of need. 

With hard labor and his skillful management he acquired considerable of this worlds goods.

He was a man that will be missed, both at the social gathering and the counsel halls. 

A man that held positions of trust and always filled them with honor and when I speak of him I want to be understood that he was one of York Twsp. first men. 

Respectfully yours Stillman C. Biddle

Back to Index

JOHN HARRISON was born in Yorkshire England February 20, 1814, in the year 1826 when a boy with his parents he immigrated to America, they settled in Livingston County State of New York.

When about twenty one years of age Mr. Harrison came to Ohio and settled in Summit County where he married Elisabeth Wardley February 19, 1837, at the time he was a blacksmith by trade. 

In the year 1845 with his small savings and family he came to what is now Fulton County. There entered and settled lands in York Township of which he made a beautiful and well paying farm, which he occupied till June 1871 then he removed to Wauseon. Where he lived a retired life till May fifth 1893 when death relieved him, buried in Wauseon Cemetery.

To him and his wife Elisabeth was born six children, Eliza, Addie, Olivia, Alfred, DeEtta and John R. of which four of them together with Mrs. Harrison survive him. Mr. Harrison was of moral culture, tender and affectionate to his family, industrious habits, sought home pleasures, was a fine farmer, always provided and lived well. Their latch string out and noted for company and a good time they always had, of which your humble writer had full experience.

Stillman C. Biddle

Back to Index
CHESTER HERRICK – Wauseon, Ohio April 5th 1886

The death of Chester Herrick, or Uncle Chet as he was familiarly called by all who knew him, occurred at Delta March 26th and he was buried in the Etna Cemetery on the 28th. A man who has been a resident of the Maumee Valley for over half a century and one who has performed his full share of the labor with the perseverance and privation necessary to change a wilderness country, a country almost uninhabited to a thickly settled and highly cultivated one, as is this valley of the Maumee at the present time, certainly deserves more than a passing notice. After a life of 93 years he lays his head upon mother earth and says “My work is done”, Uncle Chet was born at Northfield, Massachusetts March 27th 1793, and moved to the Maumee Valley with his wife, Miss Mary Ann Walker, in 1833 or 1834 and after teaming a short time for Elijah Herrick (a near relative) he rented and moved on the Hollister farm, a short distance below Presque Isle, (Wayne’s battle ground of Fallen Timbers) where he continued to reside until about the year 1843, when he purchased of Valentine Winslow, (and I think) Mrs. Richardson,  the widow of Isaac Richardson who was murdered at Rochteboult (Rushteboo) the farm of 200 acres upon which he lived, in Pike Township, until a short time previous to his death. 

The Hollister farm was principally river flats and well adapted to the raising of corn, which was the staple crop of the country, (perhaps excepting the crop of coon skins, otter and deer skins) for many years and the rent which was paid to the owner for the use of the land was 13 to 15 bushels of ears of corn per acre delivered at the ware house below Ft. Meigs. Uncle Chet had a severe affliction of inflammation of the eyes while yet a young man, from the effects of which he never entirely recovered rendering his sight very imperfect and at times more or less painful during his whole life. Not withstanding this great inconvenience and affliction with the accumulated savings from his fields of corn of nearly a score of years and with that “Yankee spirit” (for which the descendants of the Pilgrims are noted) moved with his wife to his new and comparatively unimproved land in the “six mile woods” over roads almost impassable, going into the log cabin erected by the first settler of the land. With industry and perseverance and long days of labor; no 7 or 8 hours then for a day’s work, and a dollar a day, but 12, 14 and often 16 hours of continuous hard work, in a few years cleared away the forest; broke the wild prairie, ditched and fenced the land, and put up comfortable buildings, in which he spent his declining years. Uncle Chet was a good neighbor, always accommodating the needy when it was possible, strictly honest and upright in his dealings and always held in high esteem by the leading citizens and businessmen of the early settlers, such men as John and Frank Hollister, Gen, John E. Hunt, Robert A. Forsyth, Dr. Conant, John C. Allen, Judge S.H. Cately, Capt. David Wilkinson and the many others of the businessmen of the country. The wife who shared all his early hardships and performed her full share of the hard work, necessary to accomplish so much, met an unfortunate death, by drowning in a well July 5, 1866. Uncle Chet retained his vigor both of body and of mind up to the time of his death, which is remarkable at the age of 93 years; often walking from Delta to his farm (four miles) during the years of his life. In passing his farm, in August of his 90th year, I found him following the plow drawn by two large and fast walking horses and it seemed no great effort for him to keep up, and I noticed that he turned as straight and perfect a furrow as he had years before. He was always noted as a good ploughman, in fact, a good farmer in every respect; always keeping the best breeds of livestock when it was much more difficult to obtain them than at the present time. In the industrious life of this old man is repeated the history of many of the early pioneers; they leave an inheritance to the coming generations that if preserved and followed and fully appreciated will surely lead on to virtuous industry and happy lives. The old man sleeps well; “He sleeps the sleep that knows no waking.” 

Written by Col. DresdenWinfield Huston Howard

Back to Index

Elijah Herrick was born in Stillwater, Saratoga Co., New York December 12th 1809. In 1822 he came with his father to the present vicinity of Waterville on the Maumee, owing to the unhealthiness of the climate his father soon returned to New York leaving Elijah and his brother William behind. He worked for a short time across the river from Waterville and among other things made 4,000 rails at 80 cents per hundred. He also worked at blacksmithing and made the ironworks for the sailing vessel Ante___?  built by Daniel Hubble. When about twenty years old he kept bachelors hall and raised corn on the big flats near Turkey Foot Rock.

In 1831 he was married to Orra Sophronia Noble by whom he had four children, one of which, a daughter, was living at the time of his death.

 He now bought teams and went to teaming, moving many pioneers into the woods.

In 1836 he moved to Perrysburg and took a contract to haul goods for John Hollister, taking the most of them up the river to Defiance and Fort Wayne. One time Asa Miller had goods frozen in at Manhattan which he wished to take to Fort Wayne, they loaded two teams and Mr. Miller tacking an ax went with them, they were thirteen days chopping their way through and five days coming back, for which Mr. Herrick received $100.00 Mr. Miller bearing all the expenses. He also hauled the first load of goods from the Maumee to Adrian Michigan unloading them in a log cabin which had a blanket hanging up for a door.

In 1841 he moved to Miami and with his partner established the first line of boats on the canal between Toledo and Providence. In 1843 his wife died and in 1844 he was married to Abigail Allen to whom five children were born. They lived for a few weeks at Perrysburg, and came the same year (1844) to the present homestead in Fulton Township, Fulton Co. When he came to Fulton Co., it also was very new with a small clearing here and there but he in common with the other pioneers soon brought it to a good state of cultivation. 

Mr. Herrick’s school advantages of course were limited but having obtained the rudiments of an education he was able by his superior natural ability to make up for the deficiency of early mental training. He held a number of offices and among others was Justice of the Peace for twelve years.

His was a long and eventful life for a private one, and the period of time over which the years of his life extended, saw wonderful changes in the physical, and industrial , social and intellectual life of the county. When he came a boy of twelve years to the Maumee he found it a vast wilderness abounding in swamp and full of malaria, he lived to see it cleared drained and made as productive and healthy as any place in the country. When he came he found it inhabited mostly by Indians, he lived to see it peopled by persons of the highest intelligence and morality.  He found the country with scarcely any educational or religious advantages, he lived to see it well provided with schools and churches. In the beginning of his life the best moods of travel were the stage couch and canal packets at its close we have the swift steam and electric car and the speediest means of communications was the fast boy now we talk face to face be the distance long or short by means of the telegraph and the telephone and _____ ? it is not to much to say that he did his part to bring about these privileges and blessings. 

Several years ago under the pastorate of Rev S. L. Klotzs he united with the United Brethren Church and in hope of the eternal life, died July 31, 1891, at his home in Fulton Township Fulton Co., Ohio.

Written by his Son in law Rev.  Lucius E. Willson,  Feb 19th 1892
Lucius was married to Anna Herrick, Elijah's daughter with his 2nd wife Abigail

Back to Index
Transcription of his hand written letter

On the evening of 11th of June 1821, the emigrants Thomas Howard, (grandfather of D.W. H. Howard) with his daughter Mrs. Sidney Nelson and the families of his sons Edward and Richard (the families of Alexander and Robert coming, later from White River Indiana) landed at Fort Meigs.  The only children were D.W.H. Howard and Sidney Howard ages 5 and 14 years. They purchased land at the Grand Rapids of the Maumee (18 miles above the Fort) and moved into their cabins in the winter of 1822 and 23; this was the first settlement on the south side if the river above the old Indian Mission (8 miles below) and exactly opposite the Indian village of Tein-jo-a-no. The only white settlers and neighbor for miles was Peter Manor  who lived on the Indian Reservation opposite. Edward Howard entered the lands at Aetna (now Winameg) in 1833 and built the old Etna Block house. Soon after there was established an Indian trading post in which Merrill Wilkinson and D.W.H. Howard were the traders of the establishment until Wilkinson died, when the goods and trade was sold to other parties. The Indians trade was soon after destroyed by the removal of the Indians by the U.S. Government to their lands west of the Mississippi, D.W.H. Howard aided in removing the Indians and followed there soon after and entered the fur trade with the people in the west. D.W.H. Howard moved to the farm at Etna (Aetna) where he still remained in 1882.

Mr. Oliver Verity use the above as you may deem, as the history since the above date is well known to yourself you can add what ever you wish. I would much rather you would put what I have written in your own language; and of course make all these biographies brief.

Very Truly,
Dresden W. H. Howard

Impressive Services at the Old Homestead
The Colonel’s Last Christmas Gifts
1897 Obituary - Eulogy
click to go there

Back to Index

Again one of the very first pioneers of Fulton County has passed to the great majority. Mrs. John Jacoby departed this life, from heart disease, at her residence in southwestern Gorham, on Sunday, June 10, 1888, being 58 years, 9 months and 3 days old. The funeral services were held on Tuesday, from the Franklin M. E. Church, and the body laid to rest in the Franklin Cemetery. Rev. J. P. Stocton conducted the services. 

 Mrs. Nancy Jacoby was born in Crawford County, Ohio September 7, 1829 and came to what is now Gorham Twp., with her parents Mr. and Mrs. David Severance, some say in the winter of 1834-5, and others say 1835-6; and settled in section 36, then of Hillsdale Co., Michigan but afterward attached to Springfield Twp., then it was in Brady and afterwards in Mill Creek Twps, all of Williams Co., and finally in Gorham Twp., Fulton County.

Thus, in the death of Mrs. Jacoby, Gorham looses one of the very first, if not the first settler, and there are few who have lived within the limits of Fulton Co., longer than she.

She became the wife of John Jacoby on June 14, 1846, when not yet 17 years old. They settled at first on Sec. 26, but soon moved to their old farm on Sec. 35, where she lived till her death, residing in this same neighborhood over 53 years, and never living over half a mile from the place where her parents first settled.

 There have been born to Mr. and Mrs. Jacoby, 8 children, 6 of whom, with Mr. Jacoby, survive her, two little ones having passed beyond, each when about 5 years old. She also leaves a number of grand children and 2 great grand children, and many other relatives and friends to mourn her loss. A number of years ago, Mrs. Jacoby became a member of the Baptist Church and lived consistent with her faith and was held in high esteem by all her many friends. 

“Life’s fit full fever is over, she rest in peace”

June 12, 1888                                       Fritz

Back to Index
Obituary of one of Fulton County Pioneers

On the morning of August 21st 1896, at the age of 56 years, 8 months and 9 days, Almon M. Lee passed suddenly but peacefully over the river of death, beloved by all who knew him.

He was born in Gorham Township, Fulton County, Ohio, December 12, 1840, and has ever since lived in Fulton County. 

He was united in marriage to Martha M. Gorham August 11, 1867, and to them were born two sons and one daughter, George W.; Vernon L.; and Inez M. ; whom, together with the widow, two brothers, three sisters, his daughter in law and three grand children survive to mourn his untimely loss.

 Mr. and Mrs. Lee began housekeeping in Chesterfield Township on a farm, and continued their farm life until about three years ago. When they removed to Wauseon, Mr. Lee having been elected to the office of County Recorder, the duties of which he assumed in January 1894. So well did he fulfill the duties of that responsible office that he was unanimously renominated for a second term by the convention assembled. 

Previous to his said election Mr. Lee was active in the affairs of his township, having held the office of trustee, clerk and land appraiser; taught several terms of school in his neighborhood, was an honored and respected citizen, and had the good will and confidence of all his neighbors.

Mr. Lee took an active part in the organization of the Chesterfield Grange, of which he served as Master for several years. He was also a member of the Morenci Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons, members of which lodge, together with the Wauseon lodge, officiated at his burial. 

 He was a faithful husband, a devoted father and a kind and loyal friend.

Back to Index
Death of Thomas Lingle

Born in Mifflin Co. PA October 21st 1807, when nine years of age, he moved with his parents to Center Co. PA. In 1832 he came to Melmore Seneca Co., from thence he moved to Fulton Co. Ohio, then Lucas Co., Ohio in the year 1835. At the age of 21 he learned the carpenter trade; He found employment at Grand Rapids (then Providence) and Gilead in working at his trade, until January 7, 1838 at this date he married Lucinda Williams daughter of Elisha and Hannah Williams. He then located 2 miles south of Wauseon on the farm now owned by Stutsman. In 1853 he moved on the farm 5 miles south of Wauseon where he lived until his death which occurred March 23rd 1886. 

 His family of children once consisted of seven sons and four daughters, of which three sons and one daughter survive him and were present with him at the time of death to cheer and comfort him in his last moments. He endured all the toils, privation and cares incident to pioneer life. 

We can truly say of his life, that it was continual strife to endure all these things and never enjoy the blessing of good health. For many years he has been an invalid, and at times suffered much. Not with standing, he was patient under affliction, became reconciled to death, (only regretting to leave his companion) we bid farewell to another pioneer believing that he lies peacefully at rest from all his labor.


LUCINDA WILLIAMS daughter of Elisha and Hannah Williams, born in Fairfield Co., March 26th 1819 my parents moved to Sidney, Shelby Co., the same year in 1825 moved to Seneca Co., Ohio, in 1835 moved to Lucas Co now Fulton Co., united in Marriage with Thomas Lingle Jan 8, 1838 the result of the union being 11 children, 7 sons and 4 daughters four are now living three sons and one daughter one of the early settlers of the Fulton Co., Experienced the hardships and privations incident to pioneers as this Township now is, was the first married.

Lucinda Lingle

Back to Index

A Short Biography of John McLaughlin
John McLaughlin was born in Perry County, Pennsylvania December 23, 1812, moved with his parents to Richland County Ohio in 1823.

He married Margaret Cline December 22, 1834 and moved from Richland County to Brady Township, Williams County, Ohio in 1836 at that time there were only three families settled in Brady Township. 

At the first election held in Brady Township he was elected Township Clerk, and served as such several years. When Fulton County was formed in 1850 he was struck off into Franklin Township, Fulton County. He was frequently elected in Franklin Township as the trustee and township assessor which offices he always fitted with honor to himself and to the satisfaction of he constituents.

They had their trials and hardships incident to all new country. No roads only as they made them, little or no money only what entered their land and brought them out here. He worked hard to clean up his farm; his house was always the shelter for the traveler and new settlers. He always lent a helping hand to the new settlers, him and his kind wife, had always a kind word and a helping hand for the poor and needy and those in distress.  He raised a large and respectable family and all are doing well. He was a kind husband and father, a good neighbor, and no enemies; he was strictly temperant in all things.

He departed this life very suddenly on the 2nd day of May 1887, he got up apparently as well as usual, and he did his chores, ate his breakfast and was dead before noon. He leaves the wife of his youth to morn his loss also 5 sons and 3 daughters, on son killed in the army, a good man has gone.

Franklin August 18th 1887
James S. Riddle

Back to Index

History of the Birth, Life, and Death of one of the Fulton Co., Pioneers

 Jane Vaughn Merrill was born in Holmes County, Ohio May 5th 1829 and in 1835 moved with her parents, Alexander and Rebecca Vaughn, and younger sister, Mary, to Fulton County, Ohio, then Lenawee Co., Michigan, where the remainder of her life was passed and the greater portion on the farm, which her father entered at Monroe, Michigan in 1834. In the 15th day of October1848 she was united in marriage to Osias Merrill. In 1850 she, with her husband, moved to and resided on a 40 acre farm in Amboy Township one year, and in 1852 to a heavy timbered 80 acres in Fulton Township, where she resided four years and in many ways assisted in converting it into a comfortable home. But her attachment to the old home farm, where she had spent her youthful hours in witnessing an entire new country transformed, form from a  rude wilderness to a fair state of cultivation, induced her husband to purchase a portion of it, which has been ever since been her permanent home, although she resided at Ottokee three years from 1867 to 1870 and at Wauseon two years, from 1889 to 1891. On the morning of December 28th, 1893, at the age of 64 years, 7 months, and 23 days, she passed peacefully away. She leaves a husband, Osias Merrill, three sons and one daughter; Horace A. Merrill, of Toledo, Ohio; James E. Merrill, Frank C Merrill, and Minnie Merrill Biddle, of Fulton Co., Ohio. Also three brothers and two sisters, James C. Vaughn, Edward and Caleb Vaughn, of Fulton County; Mrs. Mary Springer, of Wauseon, Ohio, and Mrs. Bell Bailey of Branch Co., Michigan, also fifteen grandchildren.

By Osias Merrill

Back to Index
Mrs. Mary (Jones) Mikesell died at her home near Wauseon Friday evening, March 11, aged 72 years, 8 months, 22 days. Deceased was born in Shreve, Wayne County, Ohio, June 17, 1814, and moved with her parents William and Elizabeth Jones, to this county in 1834; was married to Adam Mikesell, at Perrysburg, Ohio, September 12, 1837, and settled on the land that he purchased of the Government, pioneers in the undeveloped portion of what was then Lucas but now Fulton County, where now stands the old homestead adjoining the village of Wauseon. She was the mother of nine children, five sons and four daughters, three sons and one daughter preceded her to the silent and unknown world. William and Charles as soldiers gave their lives in defense of their country, one falling at the battle of Kennesaw Mountain, and the other was drowned in the Cumberland River. She lived to see nearly all the early settlers in the new country of upwards of fifty years ago pass away and to witness springing up about her a new generation and new life. Her husband died 27 years ago since which time she has remained a widow and managed the farm. Her funeral was largely attended Sunday afternoon, March 13, from her late residence, conducted by Rev. Fitzwater, pastor of the M.E. church and her remains laid by the side of her husband in their last resting place in the family burying ground on the farm.

Back to Index
A Short biography of George Miller

George Miller was born at Siblengen Switzerland December 6th 1812, His parents were not very well of in this world and had to work hard for a living, and He learned the milling business and worked for a very low wages at different places until he became a man. When he concluded he would try and make his way to America, walking all the way to Harve, France from there he sailed to America, was 65 days on the ocean and landed at New York with just 3 cents in his pocket and no friends, he started out to hunt work. He walked as far as Madison, New Jersey where he got a chance in a mill and worked there for about six months, when the mill burned down he then made his way west to Ohio into what was then Lucas County. He Chopped 10 areas of very heavy timberland, cleared it and fenced it for $100 with which he entered 80 acres of land at $1.25 per acre what was then called the Cottonwood Swamp. He then went and worked on the Maumee Canal until he took the fever and had a hard attack of it. A man by the name  of Bremen, a Prussian, tool sick also but convey home and took Miller with him and took care of him. He afterwards married Bremen’s daughter probably in the latter part of 1837 or 38. They soon after settled on his land in Franklin Township where they could not see the sun for the big trees till near 10 o’clock until he got his farm cleared up. The country was very new at that time, no roads only as they made them through the swales and swamps; and their provisions they had to go to Defiance for in a canoe along the winding course of Bean Creek nearly 100 miles. They had their trials and hardships incident a new country. He lived on his farm until he did clear it up and made it like a garden, raised a large and respectable family having had 16 children by one women of this number 7 died in infancy.  Two died since, Mary died at the age of 24, Doritha Sciles (nee Miller) at the age of 34. 3 girls and 4 boy yet living, Rev. Fredrick Miller (at one time school examiner of this county) is now living in California and preaching there. John lives in Lucas County and George is in Wood County and the 3 girls near the old place. Mrs. Mariah Miller died October 16th 1872 aged 49 years, George Miller since died September 28th 1886 at his home in Franklin Township in his 74th year. Mr. Miller was a very honest conscious man, I will relate one little circumstance, he had engaged some fruit trees from one of my boys that was dealing in fruit trees at the time, when the trees were delivered at Archbold, Miller went after them and said he could not pay for them now till fall, my son told him all right and let him have the trees. Some six months afterwards he called with me and said he owed my son for some fruit trees, as the book was left in my hands I got it and found the trees delivery and it was marked paid for. Mr. Miller said it was a mistake for he had not paid for them and here was the money, I asked him if he had given a note he said no told me to pay it when I could I wish we had more such men.

James S. Riddle

Back to Index
KATHERINE ANN (DOWNS) MINICH was born April 1st 1818 in the County of Ross in the State Ohio, and in April 1824 she with her parents moved to Seneca county Ohio. In the year 1839 she was married to Peter Minich and in the same year she moved to them Lucas but now Fulton County. Here she resided the remaining part of her life. She died December 17th 1890 at the age of 72 years 8 months and 16 days.

Back to Index
BENJAMIN PERSING, was born in Sussex County New Jersey September 7th 1809, at the age of 10 he moved with his parents into Northumberland County Pennsylvania and worked with his father in a distillery for about 12 years. 
He was married to Sarah Ely in the spring of 1833, in 1836 he moved to Marian County Ohio. He brought all he had of these world goods including his wife and 2 children in a one horse wagon and had just money enough to bring him through. He worked on a saw mill and farm for 10 years. In September 1846 he bought in Franklin Township now Fulton County and moved on his farm, (then in the woods) cleared up his farm and put good buildings on it, raised a large and respectable family and lived on it until after the death if his wife in 1872. Since then he has lived with he children, the most part of the time with his son Hamilton until he death which was February 10th 1887. He and his wife joined the Presbyterian Church in Mt. Gillion Marian County in Ohio in 1837, they were among the charter members in the Presbyterian Church in Mill Creek Township Williams County Ohio (but was struck off into Franklin township Fulton County Ohio). Both were working members in the church as long as they lived. 

They raised a large and respectable family, Mr. Persing was an honest man very coconscious and although he was parentally raised in a still house he became a very strong temperance man and would not touch tast or handle the vile stuff. 

He was a kind husband a kind father and a good neighbor.

FranklinTwp,  August 17th 1887, written by  James S. Riddle

Back to Index
ISRAEL POCOCK, was born in Tuscaranas County Ohio may 30th 1830, and died June 10th 1888 aged 58 years and 11 days. 

He came to Clinton Township, Fulton (then Lucas) County in 1842, where he has ever since resided with the exception of the last two years residence in York Township before his death. He was a good husband, Parent, neighbor and much respected citizen. He was married to Miss S. L. Merchant of Paulding County Ohio in 1854, who with six children, four girls and two boys survive him. 

The deceased was a prominent citizen in local affairs; was a member of North Star Grange and of the County Grange. 

The funeral conducted by Rev. J.H. Fitzwater was held at the M.E. Church of which the deceased was a member for the past 15 years.

Back to Index

Death of Amos Rathbun
“V.I.P.” gives the Morenci Observer of September 3, 1887, the following notice of the death and history of an old Fulton County citizen:

“And still another of the aged pioneers of Royalton Township has been called over to the majority –– Amos Rathbun, who departed this life August 18, 1887, and was buried at Weston on the 20th. He leaves an aged wife and eight children, four sons and four daughters, to mourn the loss of one who gave them the example of an honest, industrious and honorable life. In life he had the pleasure of seeing his sons and daughters all grow up to respected men and women.  Few men, if any, have performed more hard labor than Amos Rathbun. Having been born at Salem, Connecticut January 20th 1812, and growing to manhood among the thrifty New
Englanders, he was prepared when he came to the almost unbroken wilderness of Ohio in 1837, to endure the hardships incident to a pioneer life. Only a few of the old settlers are left to tell the story of that life in the cabins built of logs, where the deer bounded past the door and the sweet sleep came after a hard day’s work which was broken only by the howling wolf. But they who still remain will testify that Amos Rathbun did his part of laying low the stately trees and converting the forest into broad and beautiful fields. The first schoolhouse in the neighborhood was built by him, of logs. On the corner of his farm, one mile south of Lyons, the plank for the benches being split and hewed smooth with an ax. His farm, upon which he lived at the time of his death, was purchased without his having seen it, but he was so well pleased with the location and soil that he frequently declared that he could not have been better suited had he “looked before he leaped.” In politics he was a Republican, having joined that party at its birth and ever afterwards adhering to its principles. During his last illness, which lasted something over a year, he was not disposed to murmur, but bore his sufferings which at times were intense, with great patience, only a few tears now and then trickling down the withered and wrinkled cheek and a half suppressed sigh as he clasped a kind and loving hand, told of what it cost him to part with those so near and dear to him and take that long journey from which no traveler ever returns.  And thus “one by one” the old pioneers pass away, and only a few years more and these beautiful farms will be all that is left to remind us of those who, more than all others have helped to build up and aggrandize this nation of ours.

Back to Index
JAMES STEELE RIDDLE was born at Pittsburgh, PA June 29, 1812; Moved with his parents to Ohio in 1819 into what was then called Coshocton County Hardy Township the county was very new and thinly inhabited.  Hardy Township at that time was 12 mile long and 6 wide and in 1820 pooled 24 votes at the state election.  Bears and wolves were very plenty it was very common for hunters to kill several bears through hunting season and wolves we could hear frequently at night seen also a plenty.  Not a sawmill within 15 or 20 miles of us.   Not a grist mill near than the same distance.  The first wheat we raised my father cut with a sickle and dryed part of it in the sun scraped a place of (off) on the ground and thrashed it with a flale and cleaned it up with a sheet folded at the ends and one at each end and made wind to blow the chaff out. 
My father and I took it on horse back up to Jone’s log cabbin mill in Wayne Co. 15 miles and when we got there the mill was shut down and the miller (Mr Jones) gone but we went to the house and told Mrs Jones and she came down and  ^ the grist (that was John Jones mother and Polly[Adam) Mikesell's mother near Wauseon)  We got home after dark and mother baked some cakes for supper we though it was good ( as we had lived mostly on potatoes for than a week). 
Schools were scarce in those days.  My father used to teach in the winter in some log cabbin that they would fix up and the scholars would come from one to four miles to school. 

Holmes County was formed (I think in 1825) and was composed of one teer of townships six miles wide off of Wayne County and two teers off of Coshocton County and a strip off of the west side of Tuscarawes County and a strip off the east side of Richland County.  Soon after the organization of the county the commisioners divided the townships and made 14 out of 8 and we was struck off into Monroe Township.  My father was elected JPclerk at the first election and held the office for several years. 

I was married in Wayne County Ohio to Matilda Siddons on the 22nd of November 1833 by Wm Jewell.  Served several years as constable and Deputy Sheriff was elected Captain of the Nashvill guards (a rifel company) served 7 years as such. 

Moved to Lucas County (Now Fulton) in 1845 had one shilling in my jacket when we landed had no house had five chickens got my cabbin raised and got into it on the 16th of April. Cooked by a log in front of the house ( had no stove no money to buy one) Mister Swartzentruver (Switzentriver in 1850 census and Swartzendruber in later marriage records)  lent us a ten plate stove to keep us warm had it all summer until we got a fireplace and chimney then we cooked in the fire place for several years. 

 My neighbors were all good to furnish me provisions  but when I was working for them I could not clear land (as my land was all very heavy timberd).  I went up to Wm. Richards in Chesterfield and cut and split rails for fourty cents one bushel and a peck for a hundred rails. 

I used to go to old Jacob Wilden’s and chop cord wood (hard wood) for 31 cts a cord & pile the brush and board myself and took my pay in denums at  44 cts for yard and sheeting at 22 cts ft. 

I used to make lap shingles 28 inches long for $4 per M find my own timber and board my self.  I frequently would ???? (looks like “nive”) out 200 and fetch them into the house and shave at night by fire place and made light by burning the  ???? (no word there, probably something that means the scrap wood)  this line was written up the side margin 

In April 1847 I was elected Twp assessor constable and justice of peace and supervision.  They nominated me for assessor and Doctor Kendall for JP and asked me if I would not serve as constable as they nominated J J Clark and he said he could not do the buisneys (business). I said I did not care. 

Mr Darby and I were at the table as clerks and knew nothing of their plans and when we went to count out the Justice box the 1st ballot was James S.   Riddle. We though it was a mistake but the next one was the same and so on for several votes and some for Kendall and when we got through Riddle was 27 votes ahead.  Served 4 terms as JP 4 or 5 assessor one as appraiser 6 years as Infirmary Director. 

The 3 years after I came here I had a long spell of sicnys (sickness) first the fever then the augue (Ague - Malarial fever) was pretty bad for two seasons (as I never had any sicknes before). 

My wife and I celebrated our 50th anniversary in Nov 1883.  Our children were all present that were alive (C C having died March 18th 1876).  We have 6 children 4 boys & 2 girls.  J Q the oldest born in Holmes County Oct 1835 C C Jany 1838 Thos H May 1840  Mary Jane 1842  Louisa Oct 1844 J Irving 1847 (in this county).  Thos H has been in Terre Haute IA since 1868 at present  land agent for R R Lands and other lands.  Also loans money for Eastern firms.  J Irving is there since 73 is Insurance agent for the Phenix of Brooklin for the whole state of IA.

Back to Index
JAMES  F. ROGERS Died – at his home in German twp., January 1st 1893, at 8 o’clock, A.M. James Ferris Rogers, aged 78 years and 13 days. 

James F., son of Jonathan and Martha (Haviland) Rogers, was born in Patterson Township, Putman County, N.Y., December 10th 1814, where with his parents he resided until the winter of 1819-1820, when with them he moved to the township of Tyrone, Steuben Co., N.Y. Here with his parents he remained until the autumn of 1832, when with them and the rest of their family he moved to Reed Township, Seneca County, Ohio, where four miles east of the site of the present village of Republic, the father entered an eighty acre farm and began its improvement and cultivation. In 1838, James F., purchased of one Nathan Dix, for the sum of $175, eighty acres of land then in Lucas County, but now in German Twp., Fulton County, Ohio.

In the fall of 1839 Mr. Rogers, A.S. Fleet, John Baker, one Gehring and a McEaton, founder of Eatonburgh, better known as Edinburgh, all residents of Seneca County, came together in a wagon to German Twp., where and when Mr. Rogers first saw the land he had purchased the previous year. After remaining a few weeks and doing some under brushing on his land he returned to Seneca County. In the autumn of 1840 he came again to German and there erected on his new farm a neat little cabin of 16x18ft, into which Mr. Albert S. Fleet, with his wife moved soon after its erection. After the completion of the cabin Mr. Rogers again returned to Seneca County March 8th 1840. Prior to the building of the above named cabin, Mr. Rogers with one William Simmons left the village of Melmore in Seneca County and drove all the way to Steuben Co., N.Y, in a cutter. There and then for the first time he became acquainted with his future excellent wife, Miss Eliza Crosson, daughter of James Crosson, of Orange Twp., Steuben County N.Y. They were married in April 1842. During the time that elapsed from their first acquaintance to their marriage, correspondence by letters was kept up between them, not withstanding the fact that then on every letter sent 25 cents postage had to be paid and only 50 cents could be obtained for a common day’s labor. The spring and summer of the year of their marriage Mr. and Mrs. Rogers spent in the service of a Mr. Sylvanus Arnold, a wealthy farmer and merchant of Melmore, Seneca County. In the fall of that year (1842) they moved to German Twp., and began house keeping in the little cabin he had built in 1840. One George Blackman moved them to their new home. Their personal effects, all told, consisted of one cow, one chest, containing his clothing, a small trunk with his wife’s apparel; a box with a meager supply of house hold goods and another with a part of a set of cooper tools.  These, with $1.50 in his pocket, and an indebted of $25.00 constituted the total invoice of his “goods and chattels.” Thus, without money or friends, with no improved land, in the deep unbroken wilderness, with wolves howling hideously about their lone cabin at night, without roads, churches, school houses, mills, stores, or post offices, did this plucky couple begin pioneer life in this township fifty years ago. Mr. Rogers was a man however of robust constitution and great energy and activity. When he came to German Twp., there were but about a dozen votes in the entire township. Maumee was then the county seat, and many a weary trip thither did Mr. R. perform in order to do jury service, pay taxes and carry the ponderous poll book freighted with the expressed sovereign will of German’s electors. In the Spring of 1843, Mr. Rogers was chosen overseer of the poor, the next spring a twp., Trustee and from that time up to almost the time of his death he was almost constantly a public officer of some (missing sentence’s) ?? the duties of the office, he soon resigned. He was a man of clear head and noble principles and was trusted, respected and loved by all who knew him. He and wife became members of the M. E. church, at Elmira in 1857 and both remained active loyal members up to death. In zealous service and liberal contribution, both in church and Sabbath school, Mr. Rogers was an example and a power for good. He was one of the Stewards in the church of his choice at the time of his death. His faithful wife died about 1862 leaving the following children: Elmer H., Frank H., Martha H., James O., and Marcus P., all of whom are still living. Their oldest child, Eunice Lillian a young lady remarkable for her intelligence, goodness and rare beauty died in 1857 age about 14 years. Sometime after the death of his first wife, Mr. Rogers married a Miss Anna Sauerbeck by whom he has the following children: Henry O., Arnold J.F., Thomas W., Charles E., William W., and Grace L.P. Of all these none are living except Thomas W., who died only a few months since. His second wife, an intelligent, affectionate, active woman, died about a year and a half ago.

 Many incidents of Mr. R’s., pioneer life might be related, many of them common to pioneer life in the back woods. One of the difficulties arose from distance of mills and markets and the absence or badness of roads. Said he to the writer “It was very often worth more than the market price of grain to get it to the mill and back again, or to deliver it at the market, owing to the distance and the condition of the roads. At one time” said he “I carried a bushel of corn five miles to Birds mill and brought the meal home on my back, through the dense forest and over innumerable logs” Pork, he said, used to be hauled by ox teams to Maumee and there sold for 

1¼ cents per pound. Wheat, he said, was taken in the same way to the same place, and there sold for 50 cents a bushel and this not infrequently the farmer had to take in trade. To reach Maumee from German Twps., they had to go by way of Ottokee, Weir’s tavern, Watkins and Swanton, three full days being required to make the round trip. Ten cents, he says was more difficult to get then, than is a dollar now, and yet, say he, to purchase store goods a dollar then had vastly less purchasing power than it has now. He maintained that farmers can now better afford to raise and sell wheat for 25 cents a bushel than they could fifty years ago for 50 cents a bushel. Until nearly fifty years of age Mr. R. used tobacco in large quantities. Last year he wrote a private letter to the New Hampshire Anti Tobacco Gem., at Melvin. It was so good the Editor published it though not at all written for publication. Though the letter has once before appeared in the Republican we produce it again as evidence of the worth of our departed friend. Here it is:

“Archbold, Ohio June 1892”

SIR: - When I was 45 years old, I had used tobacco over 30 years, smoked and chewed. For the last 32 years I have not used it in any form. I was an abject slave to the habit. I was thoroughly convinced of the sinfulness of the habit and was by God’s help enabled to abandon its use instantaneously and have not used a particle since, for which I am thankful for sustaining grace. I do abhor and detest the vile stuff. It has done more to sustain and encourage the drink habit than any other one thing. I fear prohibition of the drink traffic never will be reached until the tobacco mills are stopped. I would be glad to see every branch of the Christian Church sending orders for anti tobacco literature. Hope you will be encouraged to battle on. I am in my 78th year. God bless you in your work.

 J. F. Rogers. 

His funeral was held here on the 4th. A large concourse of friends, neighbors and relatives were present. Rev. F.M. money preached an able discourse from these beautiful and appropriate words “Enoch walked with God, and he was not; for God took him.” Gen. 5, 24. Verily a good man has died,  “Sustained and soothed by an unfaltering trust” our dear old friend “approached his grave like one who wraps the drapery of his couch about him and lies down to pleasant dreams.”  J.W.R.

Mrs. ANNA ROGERS (nee Sauerbeck)
Archbold February 24, 1886

L. W. Brown, Secretary of Pioneer Association,

Dear Sir,

 My wife Anna was born in Switzerland November 17, 1839, came to Fulton County 1847, married to James F. Rogers March 21, 1863. The mother of Henry O., Thomas W., Charles E., William W., and Grace L. Rogers. 

If this is to voluminous, omit whatever you think proper.

Yours Truly James F. Rogers

ANNA ROGERS (nee Sauerbeck)

Died May 18, 1891, at her residence in German Township, Fulton County, Anna Rogers, wife of James F. Rogers. She was born in Switzerland, Canton Schafhausen, November 17, 1839, and came with her father, Jacob Sauerbeck, to America in 1849; was married about the year 1857 to a Mr. Fisher, father of W. G.  Fisher. Some years after the termination of this marital relation, she became, March 21, 1863, the wife of James F. Rogers, one of German Township’s earliest and most worthy citizens. They had six children, five boys and one daughter, all of whom survive their mother, From very early life to her quiet, exemplary death, she was a devout Christian and a faithful church member, first of the German Reformed and then of the M.E. Church. She was a faithful worker in the Sabbath School, and a woman of deep convictions with the full courage of her convictions. As a wife and active sympathetic friend in sickness and in need, she will be greatly missed. For years with her venerable husband she has been a member of the Fulton County Pioneer Association.

Her funeral was very largely attended. Marcus Rogers, recently of Texas, Elmer, Henry, and Charles Rogers of Ft. Wayne, and Mrs. Kennedy (nee Rogers) of Michigan, were present. Rev. W. E. Collett preached an able sermon from the 17th verse of the 22nd chapter of Revelations; the deceased having herself selected that text for a funeral discourse. She also selected some of the hymns used on the occasion and dictated other things regarding her burial. She was buried in Union Cemetery west of the village of Burlington. Farewell, old friend “God be With You Till We Meet Again.”


Back to Index
JOSEPH SHADLE of Dover Township, one of the first settlers of this township was born in Lebanon County, PA August 16, 1815 and was son of Phillip and Mary Shadle who had long been upon the soil of Pennsylvania. Joseph Shadle was married October 17, 1833 to Jane Burke who was the daughter of Joseph and Rebecca Burke and was born February 29, 1812. In 1836 himself an a young wife left Lebanon County PA and settled in Wayne County Ohio, Here he worked for several years on a farm upon shares and made a few dollars ahead. He then came to Fulton County and with his past few years earnings purchased 160 acres of land upon section two, township seven, north R size east, paying therefore the sum of $400.00 and the November following 13, 1845 himself and family came to Dover Township Fulton County and settled upon his purchase and immediately erected a log house. He afterwards added to the first purchase several times until at one time he was the owner of 600 acres of land, the major portion of which he has cleared and built thereon. He established his sons with homes to begin life, he has always been able to provide enough for his family to eat and ware since he has bee here and occasionally a share to the more unfortunate. He has had a family of ten Children Hosea A., Richard B. Rebecca, and William Allen. May A, Ferdinand, Luther, Emeline Harvey and Florence, whom are all living except Rebecca who pass to higher life at 50 years of age.

He and wife have lived to see all their children properly settled in the race for life and he still retains a hold upon 120 acres of land for their declining years. He is one of the successful farmers of Dover Township.

 He had four sons who enlisted in the volunteer infantry, Richard in the 14th Ohio volunteer infantry, Hosea enlisted in the 67th Ohio volunteer infantry, Allen in the 100th Ohio volunteer infantry and Ferdinand enlisted in 10th Ohio volunteer infantry, and all were honorably discharged.

Joseph Shadle has many times been honored by his township with the Office of Trustee and Constable and once with Land Appraiser and later with the Office of Justice of the Peace, but did not qualify he has been elected twice to the office of County Commissioner, and served his people six years. In this time he was instrumental in establishing a county infirmary for Fulton County. 

Mr. Shadle has always since 1845 been active in assisting in all the improvement of the township, in schools, churches and morel societies and the development of the county. He has given liberally of his means and donated bountifully of his labor for roads etc… He has been prominent as a grate harmonizer in his neighborhood and always a friend to the unfortunate in sickness, poverty and despair.

He was originally a Democrat but later a strong and active Republican but at present an untiring worker for prohibition of liquor, tobacco and a defender of the home against the Saloon. He is today thankful that he has lived to see his township grow from a wilderness to a garden settled up with intelligent and worthy people nearly all of whom are in comfortable circumstances, the saloon banished and not a place in his township were liquor is permitted to be sold. 


JOSEPH SHADLE Dies at his Home in Dover
Settled in Fulton County in 1845
He was over 86 Years Old

Joseph Shadle of Dover Township was called to his reward Tuesday night after a brief illness, at the age of 86 years, 3 months and 3 days. He was a son of Philip and Mary Shadle, the former of Pennsylvania, the later of Ireland, and was born in Lebanon County, PA., August 16, 1815. He was married in the same state, Oct 18 1833, to Jane Burke, who was born in Lancaster County, PA., Feb 29, 1812. Their family consisted of ten children: Hosea, Richard, W. Allen, Luther, Harvey, Ferdinand, Wichita, Kansas: Mrs. W. Onweller, Morenci, Mich: Mrs. G.H. Miley Wauseon; Mrs. Emma Brown, Butler, Ind,; Mrs. S.O. Warren, a daughter died in Washington in 1888. 

Mr. Shadle settled in this county in 1845 and has lived here ever since. He has filled the offices of County Commissioner, Justice of the Peace, and Constable. His wife died only a few weeks ago at the age of over 89 years. The funeral will be held from the church at Ottokee, Friday, Mrs. Carpenter, the inspirational speaker of Detroit, will officiate. 

Back to Index
BENJAMIN SKEELS – The subject of this notice was born in Chiguga? (no county in N.Y. by that spelling) County N.Y. on the 23rd day of June in the year 1810. He moved to Seneca County Ohio in 1832, that county then was a wilderness.

He was married to Caroline Hall in the year 1835, by this union there were four sons born – Roswell C. now living in Wauseon; Nelson who lost his life on the battle field near Atlanta, Georgia on the 22nd of July (no year given) he was Captain of Co. E 68th Reg.; William S. who lives on his farm in York Township, Fulton County; Lyman H. now resides in Iowa. 

His wife died May the 27th 1844, he afterward married Delilah Huffman to this union were born on son Alfred T. who now lives on the old homestead, and two daughters Sarah and Caroline now living in Wauseon. 

He moved to what is now Fulton County April 20, 1840, then Lucas County, here began the trials of pioneer life in a new country. When he reached his farm he had three dollars in money, with wife and two children. In one week he was living in his own cabin without a saved board in the house, the doors and window casings were hewed boards. He was a man always very much interested in the improvement of the county; he took an active part in the building up of schools and of roads in the township. He also did much in establishing the church of this new country. His home was the home of the pioneer ministers. He also was very much interested in the establishment of the Fulton County Fair, he being a life member of the same.

He was active in life, very firm in his convictions of right. He died November the 21st 1888 on the same farm he moved into in1840 at the age of 78 years 4 months and 27 days.

Back to Index

The bugle has again sounded “lights out” for another hero who has joined the enrollment of the immortals. Wm H. Stevens was born in Richland County, Ohio November 14, 1841, died May 7, 1901. At the age of ten years he came to Fulton County with his parents and settled near Spring Hill where he grew to manhood. He was one of six brothers who all responded to their country’s call. In the early summer of the first year of the war, a day in July 1861, Billy Stevens enrolled himself in the patriot army of the Republic in Co. D. 44 Ill Regiment, commanded by E. L. Hayes, and while engaged in the battle of Perryville, KY, he lost his left arm. He has held many positions of trust, among others the office of County Recorder, which office he filled for three successive terms.

“Soldier, rest; thy warfare o’er, 
Sleep the sleep that knows no breaking, 
Dream of battlefields no more, 
Days of danger, nights of waking.”

Back to Index
WILLIAM STRUBLE was born in Brookfield Township, Trumbull County, Ohio June 16th 1814. At 14 years of age he learned the shoemakers trade which occupation he followed for several years. On August 20th 1835 he was united in marriage with Elizabeth Dickson: from which union there were ten children; eight of whom grew to man and womanhood. He came to the Maumee Valley in the full of 1846 at which time the struggle of his pioneer life began, he settled in the woods of what was then Henry County, soon South York Fulton County where he cleared and put under cultivation the farm on which he lived many years. With other pioneers he endured privations and hardships which would appall the hearts of the young men of today. With a large family and with no other income but from his daily labor, it required a heroic struggle to provide the necessaries of life. He often referred to the darkest days of his pioneer life when for two years himself and family prostrated the greater part of the time with that very coin man desires of early days – fever and ague but by patience, determination and hard work the obstacles were one by one overcome. 

He built and operated an ashery and made pearl ash which lightened the burden of debt in a very marked degree. While he could not be counted among the wealthy he acquired a competency which enabled him to live at ease when the infirmities of old age began to settle upon him. 

He was for many years previous to his death a member of the United Brethren Church; he served the township two or three terms as trustee. In 1881 he rented his farm to his son and moved to Wauseon where he lived until the death of his wife which occurred December 26th 1889. He spent one year with his son at the farm; returning at the end of that time to Wauseon where the last three years of his life was spent with another son.
Sometime previous to his death he realized that his life work was over and often expressed a desire to join the companion who had shared his joys and sorrows for more than fifty years.

He bore his sufferings with Christian patience and seemed only waiting for the summons which came December 24th 1893. 

“He was waiting for the morning of that blessed day to dawn
when the sadness and the sorrow of this fearful life were gone.
He was waiting, worn and weary, with the battle and the strife,
hoping when the war was ended to receive a crown of life.
Watching, hoping, and trusting, ever for a home of boundless love,
Spike a pilgrim looking forward to the land of life above.”

By R.C. Skeels

Back to Index
Our friend and brother Oliver B. Verity was born Schaghticoke, Rennsselaer Co., NY January 8th 1815, he departed this life November 9th 1889 which makes his earth life 77 years. He was first born of nine children; he received the principal part of his education in the county where he was born in the common school which he traveled from 2 to 3 miles daily to attend. 

In 1830 he, with his parents, moved to Cayuga County, NY, in 1831 they moved to Lysander, Onondago N.Y. where in the fall of 1835 he entered the school room as teacher and taught during winter term until 1842. On the 28th of February 1838 he was married to Celoma Scofield of Connecticut then residing in Onondago Co., N.Y., happily have they always lived through clouds and sunshine. To them were born six children, four of them having passed on many years since. In 1843 our brother with his wife and 2 children left their homes in the East and came to what is now Fulton County, arriving in Gorham Twps., May 2 and has been a citizen of this county ever since. 

He taught school winters until 1858; the first spring after he came here he was elected township clerk of Gorham Township and was successively elected to same office 9 years. He was chosen District assessor and made the assessments in 1853. In 1836 he was chosen School Examiner for Gorham and served until 1852, when he was chosen County School Examiner and served eight years.

In 1856 he was elected Justice of the Peace for Gorham Township; in 1857 he was elected Probate Judge which office he filled until 1870 a period of 12 years. In 1870 he was chosen assistant Marshal for the Northern District of Ohio, to tale the census, he was elected Justice of the Peace for Dover Township in 1870 and served until 1876, in April 1874 he was selected as superintendent of the Fulton County infirmary and remained  there until March 1, 1880. In 1880 he was again elected Justice of the Peace for Dover Township. 

During the War he was on of the Military Committee of this county, he was secretary of the Agricultural Society of Fulton County for 12 years to him are we indebted for many pages of useful history which has taken months and years to compile. 

For many years he has been an active member of the Masonic Fraternity and patrons of Husbandry and ?.

And now his active pen lies useless, at the table the chair is empty, his work in Manual form is ended. In the enterprizing Days of Modern Spiritualism he became interested and a thourough  investigation convinced him of the truthfulness of its teachings , it became an absolute knowledge with him, with him he verily believed that he would enter a higher plane of life and a grander field for the display of his intellectual and spiritual culture.

Back to Index

Not Dead but Sleeping

Mr. Wardly was born in Lyons, Wayne County, N.Y. June 27th 1818, moved to Genesse, County, N.Y. in 1830, and in 1836 he removed to Medina County Ohio. In 1840 he removed to York Township, now Fulton County, where he has since resided. In February 1852 he was married to Miss Jane Kane who survives him, five daughters and two sons were born to him. One daughter and one son have preceded him to that rest beyond. 1869 he united with the Presbyterian Church at Delta and in 1882 was elected to the Eldership of said church, which position he held the remainder of his life.

 April 12th 1887 he departed this life aged 68 years 9 months and 15 days such is a brief sketch of the life of our pioneer brother. But it tells nothing of his life of industry, of upright and honest dealing with his neighbors of Christian example and tender care of his family, of love and affection for his companion, his unblemished character as a member of the church and the months of wonderful suffering of that dreadful disease cancer which ended his life. All of which he patiently bore looking forward to the coming rest, reckoning that the pain of his disease was not to be compare to the joys of the world to come. His remains were laid to rest in the Delta Cemetery. 

Respectfully, Stillman C. Biddle

Back to Index
JEREMIAH McLANE WILLIAMS was born Sidney, Shelby County Ohio April 25, 1822, was there 10 or 11 year. In October 1835 moved to Lucas County Ohio now Fulton County, Clinton Township, married Matilda Biddle March 25, 1844?( very light hard to read)

We have had 6 children; 2 girls, 4 boys, 5 now living, we now live on the same land our father entered Sec. 36 in Clinton Township. I never have been intoxicated nor smoked or chewed tobacco, never been so sick that I couldn’t walk out the door. 

August 23rd, 1886 J.M. Williams

JEREMIAH McLANE WILLIAMS whose death occurred April 15th 1894, was born at Sydney, Shelby Co., Ohio April 25th 1822, and moved with his parents to Melmon, Seneca Co., while he was yet small; when about ten years of age he went to Newark where he worked at the tinner’s and coppersmith’s trades for his Uncle Richard Harrison until October, 1835, when he came to Lucas Co., now Fulton Co., with his sister Lucinda and boarded with a family residing on the old Avary Lamb farm (now owned by Dr. Hollister) 1 ½ miles east of Wauseon. Occupying his time in chopping and clearing a piece of land on the south side of the farm lately owned by Elijah Burr, and erecting a cabin for his father’s family which came to this County later in the season; thus clearing the first land in Clinton Township and becoming the first white settler. Here he grew to manhood, enduring many of the hardships incident to pioneer life and on March 25, 1847 was united in marriage to Miss Matilda Biddle. 

The following is the version that actually appeared in the local newspaper

Jeremiah M. Williams

In the death of Jeremiah M. Williams the community mourns the loss of a pioneer of sterling worth and high character, whose word in all the years of his active life was equal to any man’s bond, whose life stood for probity and honor wherever he was known. A man of excellent judgment and sound sense, he possessed a sturdy independence of character that considered right and justice always, and stooped to no deception or trickery.  Mr. Williams was born at Sidney, Shelby Co., Ohio, April 25, 1822 and moved with his parents to Melmore, Seneca Co., while he was yet small and when about ten years of age he went to Newark, Ohio, where he worked at the tinner’s trade until October, 1835, when he came with his parents to this county, settling on the farm now owned by Elijah Burr, one mile east of this city, Mr. Williams father being the first white settler in this township. Here Mr. Williams grew to manhood, and shortly after he had attained his majority he made his first purchase of land, 15 acres, going in debt for it and working out by slow degrees, at hard labor and low wages. To this he added from time to time, until at his death he was the owner of 284 acres of the best of land, without encumbrance, He was the pioneer in tile draining in this section and was a progressive farmer in every sense. He served as township trustee for many years and was often entreated to
accept of other positions of trust for which his good judgment fitted him, but he invariably declined.

March 25, 1847, Mr. Williams and Miss Matilda Biddle were united in marriage. Six children were born to them, five if whom are still living. Samantha, wife of James Biddle, Calvin, Tilden, DeWitt and Edward, all residents of Wauseon and vicinity, Mrs. Williams also survives him.  His death occurred last Monday morning, the result of disease of the brain with which he has been afflicted some years. The funeral was held Wednesday and was largely attended, Rev. Coate conducting the services.

Mrs. MATILDA (Biddle) WILLIAMS, whose death occurred August 18th 1894, was born in Beaver County, Pennsylvania August 16th 1825, and when about one year old moved with her parents to Homes County, Ohio and nine years later to Wayne County. In 1842 the family came to Fulton Co. and located on the farm, apart of which is now owned by S.C. Biddle of York Township. On March 25th 1847 was united in marriage to Jeremiah M. Williams. To them was born two daughters and four sons; Elizabeth the younger daughter dying at the age of seven years. The surviving children; Mrs. Samantha Biddle wife of James M. Biddle. Calvin, Tilden, Dewitt and Edward E. reside in Wauseon and vicinity.

Tedrow, Ohio
February 20th 1896
Mr. Bayes
Wauseon, Ohio
Dear Sir: Enclosed fine a short biography of father and mother.

I intended to follow this with a short article on Pioneer life from 
“The Stories of Pioneers”
Beginning with father’s first house and it contents – clearing the land keeping the family, cost and verity of articles used – going to mill, etc.
Markets- kinds of articles sold
Methods of going to market
Beginning of under draining and its evolution and results and many other items that I thought might be interesting to your association; but the grief has put me in such a state that I am unable to do any kind of mental work – hardly able to even read the daily paper.
Hoping this will answer your purpose at present. 

Yours, Etc... D. W. Williams

(This letter accompanied the Williams Biographies above for  Jeremiah M. Williams and his wife Matilda) 

Back to Index
Pioneers of Fulton County Ohio please note the death of Peter Wise of York Twps., who died March 26, 1885 age Seventy five years ten months and three days. 

The deceased was born in Union County Pennsylvania and there married and from then came to Portage County, Ohio thence to Lucas now Fulton County, Ohio March 25, 1836 settled upon lands entered form the Government at a cost of $1.25 per acre which was them an unbroken wilderness. But by faithful industry he succeeded in making this unbroken forest one of the most productive as well a beautiful farm as there is in that section of the county. 

His family consisted of his wife who died September 7th 1875 aged 66 years 6 months and 4 days and the mother of his seven children, three sons and four daughters of which five are now living. 

Brother Wise was a devoted Christian of the M.E. faith and man of marked character in being generous in his habits, enlightened and accurate in judgments, faithful in public trust and untiring in the performance of duty, affectionate, sincere and cordial as a husband, father and friend.

And while his children yet live to appreciate his worth and mourn his death.

Let us remember him while in the vigor of life with his family in his log cabin in the midst of a dense forest. Let us remember him in the last hours of affliction, yea let him be remembered in history long after his spirit hath taken its flight to that heaven of rest in that building not made with hands bit eternal in the heaven.


Back to Index
GEORGE WRIGHT was born in Derbyshire England, November 1st 1802. In 1826 he married Frances Jones, at Wrexham, North Wales. Two years later December 10th 1828, his wife died, leaving on son George who is still living. On the summer of 1830 he came to America and settled in Genesse County, N.Y.  They lived in Mumfordville, N.Y., four years then removed to Summit County, this State, in the year 1838. In the year 1853 they came to Fulton County and purchased the William Jones farm, Four and a Half miles west of Delta, where he lived until his death Saturday, March 14th 1885.

He had been afflicted with rheumatism for many years, which for several years had disabled him for work. About four weeks before his death he fell and had not recovered from the shock and injury. But it was a heart difficulty that at last took his life. 

In September previous (1884) Mrs. Wright was prostrated with fever and was expected to depart in advance of her husband, but she survived him, though confined to her bed, to mourn, the short time remaining to her, the loss of her companion. He also left a  half brother John Wright, in Indiana, a half sister in England; and six children, as follows: George W. Wright, in Indianapolis, Indiana; Thomas W. Wright, in Columbus, Ohio; J.W. Wright, in Texas, Ohio; Charles Wright, in Pike Township, this county; and Mrs. Martha A. McClarren, at the homestead. He had buried three children before coming to this county.

His neighbors looked upon him as a man of honesty and integrity. If he pretended to be a friend they knew he was a friend. So prominent was this trait in his relations with family and acquaintances, that it became inherent also with his children. His industry, and that of his family, converted his farm into a fertile garden, His frugality left no leaks through which their hard earnings could waste. He was a peaceable neighbor and citizen, avoiding public life in person, but possessing and exercising nature judgment upon public men and measures. 

His usefulness to the county consisted mostly in his rearing a family to whom they so largely transmitted his virtues. 

He was a member of the M.E. Church Delta, Ohio and the large attendance at his funeral attested the public appreciation of the consistency of his life with his Christian profession.

Mrs. George Wright died at her home in York Township, Fulton County, Ohio September 16, 1885 aged seventy four two  months  and five days. Mrs. Wright was born in Yorkshire, England, came to America in the year ? with her father Robert Harrison settled in the state of New York.  She married to George Wright July 7 1833, the mother of eight children, six sons and two daughters, of which two sons and one daughter survive. They moved to Fulton County March 1853 to which place she lived until death.  "God, welcome her through the Pearly Gates” “Blessed are they who walk with the Lord”

Back to Index
JOHN S. YOUNG born in St Lawrence County, New York April 3rd 1838, Came to Fulton County May 4th 1853. 

HANNAH (LOZIER) YOUNG born in Holmes County, Ohio October 1st 1833 moved to Fulton County in 1836.

Back to Index

Early Pioneer History of Chesterfield Township
use the back feature on your browser to return to the index

The first Settler was Chesterfield W. Clemons of Ontario Co., N.Y. he was married at the age of 23, to Miss Fannie Downing of Ontario Co., N.Y. In July 1821 the young couple soon migrated west as far as the vicinity of Painsville, Ohio and there six daughters were born to them. Animated by the true pioneer spirit Mr. Clemons and family bravely penetrated into the almost undisturbed wilderness of this section of Southern Lenawee and Northern Fulton Counties. It was on the sixth day of October 1834 that they arrived in the forest of what is now called Chesterfield. Chesterfield Township was organized in the spring of 1836 it then included part of Gorham Township and part of Dover Township. The first attempt to raise a levy, a tax for school purposes, failed at the first election, but at the
next it was levied by a majority vote of the people. 

The first school house that was build was placed on the North East corner of the School section south of the Hawley Cemetery. The first school teacher was  Florence Butler in the winter of 1837

Remembrances of Sarah Sheffield

I was married to Jeremiah Sheffield October 11, 1838 at New Burg Orange Co., New York and started the same month for Ohio. We were one week on the canal and one week on the lake, we arrived in Chesterfield November 11, 1838. John P. Roos Sr. and Charles Smith assisted Mr. Sheffield in the selection of his land on which his widow now resides. It was surveyed by Elias Baldwin Sr., then the U.S. Surveyor. Indians helped to raise his house to three logs high then the whisky  was passed and as soon as they got their drink they left. The house was finished and moved into the same month. We done our trading at Adrian, it took one day to go and one day to come back. We bought hogs and poultry of Mr. Nehemiah Cone and cow and calf of Chesterfield Clemons, after whom the Township was named. In August of 1839 Indians had a war dance near the house, consisting of the Indians of the vicinity and four hundred from Illinois.We raised a family of ten children out of twelve, nine of whom are still living.

use the back feature on your browser to return to the index

Remembrances of Mrs. Garnet (Parsons) Willett

Her father Mr. Nathanial Parsons and family came to Chesterfield February 1835, their nearest neighbor was four miles away. The nearest grist mill was at Tecumseh. One time when her father went to mill that their mother divided what bread they had and they lived on fractional rations until his return. Their mother said if any thing happened that he did not get back when they expected him that they would have to dig up the potatoes they had just planted and eat them.  There were no schools but the oldest girl taught the rest of the children at home until they were old enough to go away from home and work for their board and attend school. 

Remembrances of John S. Butler

In 1835 I came to this township and lived with Alanson Briggs, I was then 11 years of age. Mr. Briggs was one of the first settlers, my father let me live with Mr. Briggs until I was 21 years old. I think I was the first boy in the township in the fall of 1836 Mr. Briggs took the U. S. Mail to carry from Sylvania to Lima Indiana which was about 110 miles on what was called the Indians road. This road ran from Toledo to Indiana via of Morenci Michigan. It was only cut out so that teams could travel it. Some of the streams were not bridged, and were bad to cross at times; I carried the mail for Briggs. When I first began there were but one Post office on the whole road but when I left there were nine. When we got four miles west of Morenci it was 33 miles before we came to a house and I went through twice a week when I could. I fell into the St. Joe River once and the U. S. mail on top of me but I got through all right out I did not like this company. I helped Mr. Briggs clear the farm Mr. James H. Turner now lives on. I cannot complain of hard times only in the carrying the mail and that was to much for a boy of fifteen. 

Remembrances of Richard Roos

The woods were well filled with game which kept the people from hunger; the Indians would help raise the building as there were not white men enough. One peculiarity of the red man was to save enough whiskey from each rising to last the next day, they would drink all they could and then fill their mouths and step back from the crowd and spit it into a bottle to drink the next day. 

Martha Turner was the first white child born in Chesterfield July 29th 1835

The first marriage was Sallie A Clemons to Elias Salisbury in A.D. 1840

use the back feature on your browser to return to the index

Thanks to Barb Voss for her time and volunteering to transcribe 
these Pioneer Biographies / Obituaries. Her efforts are greatly appreciated.


This Page Was Last Modified Wednesday, 09-Dec-2015 10:08:24 MST
Maintained by Mark Lozer, webmaster.
Send E-mail to: