Poem written by Elisha P. Bosworth dated April 9, 1855 for Franklin E. Bosworth
Kind friends, if you'll please listen I'll tell you about the boys Who made that overland journey From Michigan to Illinois.
You recollect the snowstorm The day we cleared the port, It did its best to stop us But fortune cut it short. At noon we reached the plank road Then for the south-west away We steered in hopes of finding Down there a summer day. That night we stopped at Chambers And Joe built us a fire With such accomodations One need never to tire. Next noon we got to Nortons And sure as I am a sinner Says Ralph, "Lisp here they are human Let's stop and take some dinner." And so we did by jingo It didn't lack for spice For we had the girl for waiter Whom Richard thought so nice. The sky was darkly overcast By Squalls and sunshine parted When Uncle West bade us goodbye And for the depot started.
We went through Schoolcraft, Three Rivers,Constantine, Mottsville, Bristol Elkhart, Miswak, and the South Bend Where Ralph was like a pistol (off) From there I had to drive alone Through mud my slow way picking, And soon it got so awful bad that it nearly left me sticking.
I passed through many varied scenes Got frightened once by fire But found myself next morn unharmed Ready to wade the mire. Saturday night I reached the State Line And there stayed over Sunday Studied the catechism all day Took Illinois on Monday. For half the day there still was mud And once a snowbank frightful But after that the roads were good The weather quite delightful. Tuesday night found me safe home And all the people healthy They've corn and wheat and hay to spare Even those not counted wealthy.
Since then I've plowed and sowed some wheat And harrowed it in truly And should the weather still be fine It will be growing duly. We need a rain to sprout the grain And set the grass to growing To fill the bogs and please the frogs And keep the mills a going. I expect sometime next month to get A real Old Northeast blow. About the time our corn is up It'll cover it with snow. Please write when you expect a thaw And if it comes in season I'll make a fire to help you on Or else there'll be a reason. The nights are very frosty yet But folks are sowing oats I rather think you will wait a spell Lest they might want two coats. But then we will let the steel plows slide And get the ground all ready
For sowing on and dragging in Then we can take it steady. I guess that now I'd better stop So write as soon as maybe, And let me know how all get on From Grandpa to the baby. Goodnight: Give my respects to all Tell Mary to be nice And wipe her nose and keep it clean This writes your servant, Lish. ansferred, to a man. It was understood that the six months service in the militia, given before the transfer to the Continental Line was completed, was to count on the five year enlistment (and it is generally believed that this was one of the inducements held out to get the men to transfer). When the term on enlistment drew to a close the officers would not countenance that promise. Not a few packed their belongings at the end of the period and marched home. William was one of these and their officers reported them AWOL.
There was a dispute as to the rights of the soldiers who marched away at that time -- they had served two years and a half (counting the Militia service - 3 years), That the record might be cleared for the children Anna (His wife) prevailed upon him to return and serve out the three years and forever close all dispute. Some six months before the defeat of Cornwallis, when Washington was urging everyone with experience, who could, to join the forces with which he planned to march against General Cornwallis at Yorktown. William did return and served six months and seven days and participated in the campaign that crushed the English Army and brought the war to a close.
The first payroll on which William Lowing 's name appeared, is dated April 19, 1775, when a body of men was sent to the Connecticut River country on account of an alarm declaring the English were gathering troops for an invasion. The last was for an 18 day campaign to meet the inroads of English and Indians on the Canadian Frontier.
William went with Captain Joseph Hatch, who formed a company of rangers for especial services, in August 1776. He received first month's pay and receipted for it. He volunteered for service in the corps organized to resist invasion of New Hampshire (Vermont Territory) by New York. The battle was fought July 12, 1775. He went as Lieutenant on scout duty for 10 days in March 1781 under Captain Eben Martin.
In 1780, Captain Stephen Calkins and twenty-eight men went on an expedition in answer to an Alarm for Rutland County districts, leaving on March 26 and returning after six days service. They were ordered out by Colonel Ebenezer Allen, Isaac Tichnor and Timothy Bronson audited the payroll; William received pay. Joseph Gage, Amos Calvin, William Lowing and Richard Smith were the quartet who stayed the whole campaign. Again, William (7th on the list, went with William Calkins and 24 men, October 20 returning October 25, 1780.
In 1781 he served as private volunteer in the usual fall alarm, from the Canadian frontier, serving under Captain Thomas Bull October.
In 1779, he and a few of "The Green Mountain Boys" joined an expedition, led by Captain Ethan Able, to the Canadian Frontier for two months. William was billeted as Sergeant.
In March 1780, another short campaign on the Canadian Border under Captain Gideon Crosby. In October 1780, another short campaign on the Canadian Frontier under Captain Jacob ODell. He also served under Captain Joshua Stanton and Captain Isaac Tichnor, Officers in the Green Mountain Lane, in an unusual campaign. In these short campaigns, instead of sending out regulars, they permitted volunteers from other sources to serve and this is the reason William served under so many officers.
There were nine days of hard fighting by the Rhode Island boys at Yorktown, but their military rolls were destroyed when the British burned Washington, during the War of 1812. This Yorktown engagement was the last for William and he received a commission as Captain, but this paper was burned, when his home burned years later at Lewis New York.
The preceding data has been verified by annuals of the War Department, Family Bibles and other documents.
1st Rhode Island Continental Regiment Flag
2nd Rhode Island Regiment 1781
Battle of RI map; Angell, Israel. Diary of Colonel Israel Angell Commanding the Second Rhode Island Continental Regiment during the American Revolution 1778-1781. Edited by Edward Field. Providence: Preston and Rounds, 1899.
In the fall of 1779, William went "west" to Vermont, which was virgin territory, to look for a home site. He was then 21 years old. About a year after this on December 24 1780, he married Anna Haight. He was 22 and his bride 16. She was the daughter of a strict Quaker, a reader in the Friends Church which served the people of Danby and Tinmouth Townships in Vermont. They were married by a Minister outside of the Quaker faith and when Anna's father was told of it, he protested that no one could be rightfully married outside the Friends ceremony. William then, to placate his father-in-law, took Anna to Danby and they were again married, this time by a Baptist minister, the later date, being December 24, 1780. At his time a certificate was given, which was burned in the Lewis fire. After marriage, William bought a 40 acre tract of land from the original Hensdale allotment. Here he built a log house with barn and out buildings, late in 1780 or early 1781. Mary was born here (2nd child). He sold this place to James Armstrong about 6 months after he returned from the war.
The story of the furniture of this first home, showed William to be a genius. There was little factory made furniture. That brought from England, people would not buy because of its source and the colonists had little money, so they made their own. William selected for theirs a second growth of hickory. When cut, it was straight and of even grain. The greater part of this furniture, was made from one tree. The wood was smooth and white, and even later when it was washed with soap and water, it would take on its original whiteness. For a table he split out slabs about 3 inches thick and dressed them down to two inche s. He made two tables, two beds, stools, benches, and chests to pack things away. These were of cedar. Then he began the harder work of making chairs and bric-a-brac shelves. Two chairs of the Windsor type passed down from son to great grandson, being finally destroyed by descendants who did not appreciate their worth as heirlooms. Both William and his wife were large and these chairs were made to fit them. They were comfortable and had only to be washed and they shown like polished ivory.
Though William had always intended to return to see his mother in Jamaica - the revolution, his marriage and growing family, kept him from doing so and as he never heard from her he supposed that the Captain had reported him as dead. He died in the fall of 1802, leaving a wife and nine children.
Several stories of his death seem to disagree, but the one most agreed upon says that he died of Typhoid fever. He had worked in the Lowlands near the mill, where the swamps with their stagnant water and gasses, caused Malaria laden mists to rise. His home was a fame structure, to be built on a hillside to be out of reach of flood water from the river. The old well is still to be seen and it is within this century (1915) that the last of the fruit trees were cut and burned. The old house was sold and the timbers used in building a house on the main street in Peru, New York.
William had planted many fruit trees after moving to New York State, the scions of which were brought from New Hampshire, and it was from these trees that scions were brought to Michigan later, in 1850, by his two sons Isaac and Stephen. Pearmins, Spitzbergens-Winesaps and large Pippins were the varieties.
Anna Haight Lowing was a big woman- a descendant of Simon Haight who arrived at Salem, on the "Abigail" in 1628. Joseph G. Haight, was a member of the Artillery Company formed by Alexander Hamilton and Samuel and Joseph signed the Declaration, calling for a mass meeting at Deerfield New Hampshire, April 2, 1776, calling for armed resistance to England. Simon Haight was made a Freeman at Dorchester Massachusetts in 1633.
September 13, 1797 William Lowing articled 105 acres of land to Elisha Sherman, for 230, but payment was not made until winter. William remained in possession until fully paid. He then moved to Peru, New York were we find him paying taxes at the fall collection. He with other Quaker families had been invited to make their homes at Peru. Most of the Danby pioneers had come from Rhode Island and these were the families invited to settle at Peru.
The earliest churches were Friends - followed by Congregational and Methodist churches.
Robert Taylor opened a "Select" school and charged $1.50 per pupil for a term of three months, and it was to him that the Lowing children went for their first instruction. The Friends made the trip from Danby, Vermont to Peru, New York, by ox team over very rough roads, just wide enough for an ox team to pass - deep ruts left from the previous summer were now frozen hard. There were few bridges and what there were, of the crudest, while most of the streams had to be forded.
There were few horses in the cavalcade - the majority of the teams were oxen, and in many cases carts took the place of more convenient wagons. Some oxen carried loads on their backs and often when a stream was deeper than usual from the spring freshets,
the wagons had to be carried over on the backs of the oxen -- having been taken apart for the purpose. When all were across, the wagons were assembled and loaded. The people had crossed on trees-felled across the streams.
This trip-by making a bit over ten miles a day, took ten days. Most everyone preferred walking, to bumping over the rough roads. The days progress was slowed by quagmires, where the wagons sunk to deep that other teams had to be used to pull them out. Also the pioneers drove their sheep and cattle, which had to be driven slowly. To most of the children, this trip was a lark, - James, William's oldest son and Mary his eldest daughter, were 16 and 15 respectfully. Deborah was 11 and Santon 9.
Even the 7 year old Susan, remembered parts of the trip. Isaac was 3 years old, and while he walked some, he bounced along on the luggage, mostly. To many of the women, this trip was a hardship. The season was early and some weren't dressed warm enough to stand the exposure of ten days in the open.
After arriving in Peru, William bought 100 acres of land, a short distance from the "Paper City". which people had laid out for the Village. It was well located, and soon north and south, as well as east and west roads were surveyed with a road on each side of his land. The land also abutted the Little Sauble River. William had learned, during the time he was "bound out" to the lumberman, a good deal about the advantages and operations of a saw mill. He erected a saw-mill on this river and also placed in it stones so it could be used as a grist mill.
This mill must have made money, for he soon paid for his 100 acres and bought 156 acres east of his farm. At his death in 1802 (6 years later, he only owed $30,00 [sic] on the mortgage on this 156 acres.
William's mill was the first in Peru, but later a man by the name of Harrington built a saw-mill directly across the small river from it. The nature of the land along the river was such that after Harrington had used his water right there remained 2 feet of water for the Lowing mill, which made the Lowing right more valuable and this mill was free of debt at the time of William's death.
At the first election after he moved to Peru, he as elected assessor, an office he held for six years, or until his death. .
In those days most of the land was unfenced and unbroken and was used for grazing, by the pioneers. Their crops had to be fenced against cattle and these fences were often makeshifts and were easily broken down by cattle. So --"Fence-viewers" were appointed to pass upon what was and what was not a fence. William was made head of the Fence-viewers, on April 2, 1799, which office he held until his death.
In those days a road builder was called a "Path Master". As a road bounded his property on four sides, with a ford crossing one of them and another road leading to his grist mill, he was made Path-master and spent much time keeping the roads in passable condition.
Schools as well as homes were built of logs or rough boards, with few windows and were usually heated by fireplaces. The desks were home made, with backless benches.
There were few schools to a county as there were often not enough children to form a school. Some person, in the district would open a private school in his home, and it was such a school that the Lowing children attended. The early teacher had, little more than a Fifth Grade education. Only a small percentage of settlers could read or write. William had had enough education before leaving Jamaica, to be able to do both. They had no pencils, but used quill pens and ink, made from berries. Few letters were written, but William assisted in making deeds and in their recording.
Men teachers were more successful than women, for the pupils were often big, strapping fellows of seventeen or older, and it was necessary to subdue the pupil before he could be taught. Tales are told of pupils carrying the teacher out and locking him in an outside privy, thereby causing his dismissal. Land was cheap and cultivating it was easier than teaching, so that many good teachers became farmers instead.
There were so few schools in Peru County, that one Board had supervision over the whole county and they were looked to for every means of operating the schools. Money to pay the teachers was the most difficult to find, so that teachers boarded with the families of the children, living a set time with each family. Married men were usually furnished their food and little else. Sometimes no payment except crops.
In 1800, William Lowing, Elisha Arnold, and Elmer Lott, were chosen Peru County School Board. They held this office during the years until William's death.
Holden Lowing was the 4th of Isaac and Lavina's children. Born March 19, 1821 at Bloomfield, New York, died March 29, 1900, married September 11, 1851, to Eleanor Chapin Woodruf.
In 1814, when Holden's parents were married, knowing that there was not much opportunity for a young couple in the well settled area around Peru, New York, they drove over 100 miles into the wilderness and began to "chop out" a farm home from the virgin forest. Soon others came and the name East Bloomfield was given to the settlement. They cut the trees, pulled the stumps, built their homes - clearing enough land for crops to feed their oxen, pigs, and cattle, as well as themselves. The first year they cut logs and sold them and shaved shingles, so as to buy food. By the next year they had some of the land cleared.
They lived here for several years and nine children were born here. As the land was poor, after it was cleared - stony and hilly, but a poor living could be secured from it, so Isaac (Holden's father) often worked in the brick yard and made pottery to help out.
Because they must help their parents, the children had little chance for education, perhaps only during the ages of five and ten years.
After Holden came to Michigan and married here, he became active in civic affairs and prospered to some degree, so that each child married, he was able to give him a small start in life. Their children were:
|Glen Emmet||m. Eliza Cheyne|
|Otis U.||m. Edna Gillett|
|Daniel||m. Anna Fairbanks|
|May Belle||m. Charles Waters|
|Isaac N.||m. Lettie E. Willis|
|Rose||m. Charles Wickham|
|Dora||m. Edward Ulberg|
|William Riley||m. Mary Ulberg|
|John H.||m. Clara Ulberg|
|Eva "Nettie" Annette||m. Charles Ladewig|
|Alice|| m. George VanWagon|
|Esther B.||m. William Engel|
|Benton||born between Glen Emmet and Otis U. died young.|
In the fall of 1841, Holden bought a farm for his father Isaac. (The Government had bought up a great amount of cheap timber land along the Grand River Valley and ordered it to be sold for $1.25 an acre, payable in State dues, but warrants could then be purchased at $.40 on the dollar, so that this land cost only $.50 an acre. Money being scarce, it was hard to raise even that amount to pay for land.
It took four years for the money to be raised. In the fall of 1841, two of Isaac's sons came to Michigan. Stephen and his wife and baby Martha, to take up land he had bought in 1836, and Holden, to purchase land for his father, Isaac and later for himself. Holden purchased land a short distance south and west of his brother Stephen, for his father. This land was densely covered with timber, but it had all been surveyed in 1831. In 1835 a state road had been surveyed and staked out, which was to run from
Grandville to Grand Haven. The land of Isaac and later that which he had bought for himself, faced this proposed road.
In the spring of 1842, Isaac, then 48 years old arrived in Michigan. He came alone, by boat around the Lakes, arriving at Grand Haven and coming up the Grand River by steamboat stopping at the landing belonging to his son Stephen. He planned to build a
cabin for his family who were to come the next year. All that summer, he and Holden cut timber and cleared land and built the cabin.
Franklin Bosworth returned in the fall of 1842 and traded his first '0 acres for 80 acres almost across the proposed road from them. While Franklin was building his cabin he lived that winter with Holden and his father.
On October 18, 1845, Lavina, Isaac's wife and two sons, James and Isaac, Jr, and three daughters Mary, Cordelia, and Elizabeth arrived. They came around the Lakes, a trip taking fifteen days. Being so late in the season for Lake travel it was a stormy trip and all were seasick but Mary. The Captain teased her every morning, by asking her if the storm had gotten her supper yet. She was eighteen, and Cordelia, thirteen, while Elizabeth was ten.
At Grand Haven they took the steamboat and came up the river, arriving at Sand Creek at dusk. Here they walked to Stephen's hut, where they decided to stay the night with Ruth and Stephen, rather than cross through the woods and swamps to Isaac. They moved out the furniture and made beds on the floor.
In the middle of the night, Ruth was taken with the pains of childbirth, so the family was awakened and Stephen asked the hired man to taken them over to his father's. Lavina remained to help. The hired man grabbed up some pine knots to burn, to light the way on path and over creeks and marshy places. While crossing a creek on a log, Elizabeth slipped and fell in the creek- the excitement of getting her out of the water, the man dropped his lighted pine knot in the water, so they finished the trip by joining hands and following the man in the dark.
The children never forgot that night trip to their new home in Michigan - especially Elizabeth, who found being soaking wet in the month of October, in the middle of the night, anything but pleasant.
There was always venison and wild meat to eat if one was a hunter, or they could buy of the neighbors. There was maple syrup in the Spring. Wild berries and cranberries were found in the near marshes and cut-over openings. Many people put down pork and pigeons in salt. Bread and pan cakes were made of flour which they had ground at the grist mills, Wild honey was often found. Potatoes, milk, gravy and salt pork was often served, for it was one of the cheapest meals, when money was scarce.
Holden had lived but a short time with Stephen and Ruth, and then found employment in a saw mill. He had purchased 80 acres for his father, south and west of Stephen. This land faced the proposed State road which had been surveyed in 1831. For years he helped survey almost all the farm land in the south part of Georgetown and northern Jamestown.
The first years of Stephen and Ruth's life in Michigan were very difficult - especially in the winters. Stephen had done little to make his first but comfortable The mosquitoes were a great problem and the swampy land gave early pioneers a Malaria which they called ague. Ruth was sick much of the time from this ague. Often there were days when there was but little to eat. To make matters worse, Stephen was away from home most of the lumbering season. He cut and drew logs to the river all winter, hoping to gain a little money be selling his logs in Grand Haven in the Spring, but in the early 1840s, logs generally did not bring in enough money to pay expenses. Usually $5.00 per m. and sometimes less. This sometimes did not pay the man that Stephen hired to help.
This lack of money in logs, gave Stephen the idea of building a sawmill, knowing he could sell boards to settlers, to build their first huts. He built this water mill on the Creek than ran close to his house, only nearer to the river. There was not much force to this creek, so he dammed it and made a small pond, in order to insure a steady stream of water. er[sic] he put up a water wheel to which was attached pails. These pails were filled with water from the race at the top, and the fill pails made a weight and gave impetus which turned the wheel and emptied at the bottom, this force making enough power to turn the saws. Although this mill was not very successful, (they often had to stop and let the mill pond fill up with water, before they could continue) it was still quicker than hauling the logs to Jenison and bringing back the boards. It was used for about three years (1843-1846), by Stephen or any neighbor who needed lumber.
One day Martha, Stephen's little daughter, climbed into one of the pails and her weight started the mill. To keep from being plunged into the w ater, she commenced to climb from pail to pail. One of the men working near the mill heard it running, so hurried to investigate and lifted her out.
Shortly after Ruth (Stephen's wife) came to Michigan, she was left a legacy of $600.00. They were still living in this first but and although $600.00 could have made them more comfortable in their furnishings and living quarters, they used none of it to better this condition. There was a strip of pine very close to Stephen's land, which was one of the finest in the State. This land was being taken up fast. It must have been a hard decision for Ruth to make. To buy 160 acres of Pine for future wealth, instead of using it for herself and the children, who needed it so desperately then. This land was divided. Eighty acres on the west adjoining their home and eighty acres on the east. Forty acres on both sides of the logging road running toward Jenison.
At one time, Holden Lowing wished to extend the logging road, leading directly north from Hudsonville across his land and asked permission of Stephen to have it cross his land, thereby making a straight road from Hudsonville, north to the Ohio Mills dock on the Grand River. While it would appear to be the sensible thing to do, Stephen refused. Holden was very angry. Years later, Stephen wished this road to go through an began the proper procedure to accomplish it, but Holden was Supervisor at that time and decided Stephen was not to have this road, it he could prevent it. Holden knowing that a road cannot disturb a cemetery, had the southern most part of his land set off as a cemetery and
buried one of the poor charges of the Township on this lot. As this was the southern entrance to the proposed road, Stephen never gained his road. For years that lonely grave was the only one in the cemetery. Later Isaac and Lavina were buried there, but as no suitable market was placed there, the exact location of their graves is not known.
The brothers eventually made up their quarrel and were friends.
When Holden Lowing - 4th child as well as 4th son was born, it was in a story and a half clapboard house, with a large fireplace at one end, which was used for both heat and cooking. The three older boys slept in aloft, reached by a ladder. There was homemade furniture - a table, chair or two - benches - beds made with woven rope springs. Ticks filled with straw or corn husks, were used for mattresses. His clothes were probably hand woven. The wool or flax was no doubt grown, spun and woven by his mother.
Wolves were very numerous in those days and usually ran in packs. They were never known to attack a person, but often, when one went out for the cattle, in the morning, he found they had been encircled by the wolves at night. When wolves are near, domestic animals will usually herd close together and the wolves will run around them in circles, howling in a weird manner.
So few people lived along the river in 1836 to 1841, when Stephen arrived for the second time that we will describe these villages, for Stephen became friends with most all these settlers.
Up the river, at Spoonville, was a tribe of 50 or 60 Indians and one or two cabins of white people.
Further up the river was Steele's Landing or what is now known as Lamont. A.D. Yeomans, and Allen Stoddard settled there in 1835, and Ira Maxfield, Lemuel Peaks, T.B. Woodbury and Daniel Angell were all there in 1836 when Stephen Lowing arrived. The first settler was Mr. Burton, who moved down 2 miles from what is now Jenison. (---------
The winter of 1843/4 was one of the hardest that the pioneers ever had to face, in Michigan. It was known as the winter of storms. Snow was so deep that most of the settlers lacked feed for their animals. The hogs that were not killed for food, were turned out to fend for themselves and most of them starved or froze. The men, to save their cattle, cut down cedar trees and dug paths so the animals cold get to them. The cold was so severe that most of the people suffered in their poor shelters, and were sick with the Ague. This cold lasted into April. That spring Isaac and his neighbor, Franklin Bosworth, walked to Ada and bought 2 pigs which were mere skeletons, but the best they could buy. When Isaac arrived home with his, it fell dead from exhaustion.
In 1847 the state road became an actuality. In 1845, a school had been built at Canada Hill, and was called School District No I in Georgetown Township -- Miss Ada Evarts was the first teacher. It was a frame building, costing $112.00 and was built on Section 5. At this time there were only 133 people living in the large territory of Georgetown.
In 1845 the State Road was completed between Grandville and Grand Haven. This road went straight west from Jenison by a corduroy road over the swamp, up what later called Ames Hill, where it angled straight past his father's (Isaac's) and Franklin Bosworth's land, through Bauer and again north and west to Allendale and from there north and west to Robinson and on to Grand Haven.
There was little difference between this State Road and the logging roads that ran into it, for both were poorly constructed and each spring this road was a regular quagmire. The whole country was now interlaced with logging roads, and the State Road was called "Mud Highway" or "Mud Street".
Isaac never gained any wealth - he had been a drinking man all through his New York days and although it was more difficult to acquire it in Georgetown, he still spent money for it when he had a chance to get it. -------
A story is told about Isaac and his younger brother, Stephen, who lived at Center Road Pennsylvania. Stephen visited his brother Isaac, in Georgetown in 1868 and although most of the Lowing were Teetotalers, both Isaac and Stephen liked Liquor. Isaac knew one of his sons had a well stocked cellar, so they decided to visit him. Refusing a horse and buggy, they walked the six miles to the son's house and there they remained until 3 P.M., imbibing freely. They started home- they could only walk by linking arms. As they neared home, they were feeling pretty good and could be heard a half mile down the road, singing and walking rail fence fashion. One of the sons set out to meet them, but they refused help. Most of the relatives thought it funny, and the two old men giggled and chuckled over the fun they had had, all the rest of time they were together.
As Isaac's circumstances improved, he added a few rooms to his 2 room cabin. In this house he lived until his wife died in 1868. He was 74 years old the n and as the children worried about him, living alone, he moved to Holden's where he had a room and good care. Here he died in 1876, having outlived his wife 8 years. His property had been deeded to Holden, and was later given to Holden's son, Daniel.
Isaac left more descendants than any other of William and Anna's children and he was the progenitor of all the Michigan Lowings. He and Lavinia are buried in the cemetery adjoining the Holden Lowing farm, and at the north end of the Georgetown Hill Road. The wooden markers have disappeared so the exact location of the graves is unknown
In 1842 Georgetown added a part of Talmadge, south of the River (T 7 N*R 14) W, which was "set off' to Ottawa Co. Talmadge added part of Georgetown, north of the River. In 1842 the name Kent was changed to Grand Rapids.
Monroe Street follows the trail to Campau's Trading Post, on the bank of Grand River. It kept along the impassable swamp, extending north from the corner of Monroe and Division, then wound along the foot of an abrupt hill from Ottawa to Pearl Street. This hill connected with the now disappearing hill between Pearl and Lyon Streets. - Beyond these hills the trail descended to Bronson Street, South of Monroe, the descent was steep and ground so low as to be deeply covered at high water.
The boat channel of the river was between the Island and the main land and the landing was where the blocks of stores now are on the south side of Monroe Street at the foot of Canal Street west of the foot of Canal Street north of Pearl Street was Mr. Wadsworth's sawmill. From Franklin Everett's Memorials on the Grand River Valley. 1877/8
In 1848 there were 2 houses in Jenisonville. Georgetown Post Office was the first in the Township, on the River - Section 4 as early as 1850 and S.L. Lowing was the first Postmaster. It was moved to Section 9 in 1859. E.F. Bosworth held office from 1862.
Georgetown Grange with 43 charter members and H.C. Lowing as Master - 1875-76-77-78-79-89. W.R. Lowing 1881. At a cost of $900.00 they built a Hall on Section 26 25x60 ft and 18 ft high.
At Haire's Landing sec 8 on Grand River -- Sawmill built in 1856, burned in 1864 and was rebuilt in 1872. They cut 300,000 ft per day. The mill burned again in 1877 and was never rebuilt. On sec 4 about a mile further down the River, S.L. Lowing operated a mill.
H.C. Lowing was one of the 10 charter members of Jenison Lodge inaugurated January 21, 1875. The Lodge room, 22X30 ft was valued at $200.00 with furniture.
E.F. Bosworth, born Washington Co, N.Y. October 28,1818 settled in Vermont - went to Buffalo in 1827. Came to Michigan and in 1843, settled on Section 9 - Georgetown. He was postmaster -- Supervisor and Township clerk. On Sept 27, 1846 he married Mary Jeannette Lowing who was born in Genessee County New York Je 5, 1825.
All along Grand River and the Rapids were Indian trails which the first settlers followed until the land surveyors blazed out the section lines. On the west side of Grand Rapids, was the Council Tree, and all the trails, east, west, south and north led to this place.
The one leading southward along what is now Butterworth Street (now called Road) it wound between the hills to Finniesy and OBrien Lakes to the Indian Village on Sand Creek. It was this trail that Stephen Lowing and Franklin Bosworth followed when they first arrived.
There was a trail that led north from the Council Pine, up River Rouge and far into the Interior. On the east side of the river the Ottawa Trail became the Grandville Road and led to all southwest points. At Bass River it branched to the Pottawatomie Country. Going to the east were many trails. Monroe Avenue started by being a path to the Thornapple River with a branch to Ada. There was also an Indian Trail following around the north of Coldbrook Hill, following the ravines and coming out at Plainfield. The Middleville, Hastings, Battlecreek road was developed from a trail leading in that direction.
At Grandville, which was settled even before Grand Rapids, Luther Lincoln was the first arrival. He brought five yoke of oxen and was the first man to till any soil in the whole Grand River Valley.
In a letter written to his parents on April 22, 1933, Mr. Linclon says he lives in a town without inhabitants and without a name, in the County of Kent, six miles below the Falls (on the Grand River on the United States Road from Detroit to the mouth of the River.
In about a week he planned to put five yoke of oxen on one plow and "plow as long as it will do to plant". In 1834 there were fourteen families in Grandville, in 1835, four more and in 1836 about seven more. Grandville and GrandRapids were contesting to see which would expand the more. There was an Indian village also, at Grandville.
Across the River from Grand Rapids, was a large Indian Village, where Councils were held for the whole western section of Michigan. A Reverend Slater had an Indian Mission at that Point. Grand Rapids, then, consisted of the Eagle Tavern, 2 mills, a blacksmith's shop and two stores - a real estate office - a doctor's office and a few houses. The streets were deep furrows of mud in wet weather and deep ruts, when fair. The only roads were Indian Trails and most of these led out in all directions from the Council Tree on the west side of the river, at Grand Rapids. Flat River trail was the only route between Grand Rapids and Lowell. DeMarsac and Robinson, at the mouth of the Flat River were the only settlers between Grand Rapids and Ionia.
Michigan, although acting as a State since 1835, was admitted in 1837, Mason was the first Governor. The first Act was to do away with Wildcat Banks.
Georgetown Township, made up of Jamestown, Zeeland, and Blendon, with most of the inhabitants living in the present Georgetown, was organized in 1839. In April 1840, seven men met at Jenison and held the first Township Meeting.
$100.00 was voted for contingencies and $50.00 for the support of the poor. At the second election in 1841, Hiram Jenison was reelected Supervisor and Burton as Clerk. At the third election, 1843, Jenison again as Supervisor and S.L. Lowing as Clerk. (There is a question as to whether this was Stephen or Holden - County Histories differ on this point.)
|Hiram Jenison Supervisor
Lowing (either Stephen or Holden) Clerk
E. F. Bosworth, Hiram Jenison, Justices
H. Jenison, H.C. or Stephen Lowing
|H. Jenison, G.M. Barker|
|H. Jenison, A.A. Scott|
G.M. Barket, E. F. Bosworth
|A.H. Scott, G. W. Brooks|
|H. Jenison, E. F. Bosworth|
H. Jenison, E.F. Bosworth
|L.T. Beardsley, E.F. Bosworth|
|Stephen L. Lowing, W.N. Carr|
|H. Jenison, E.F. Bosworth|
|Stephen L. Lowing, E.F. Bosworth|
|Stephen L. Lowing, A H. Scott|
|E. F. Bosworth, M. W. Scott|
|Stephen L. Lowing, E. F. Bosworth|
|John Haire, E.F. Bos worth|
|John Haire, E. F. Bosworth|
|Stephen L. Lowing, E. F. Bosworth|
|B.K. Weatherwax, E.F. Bosworth|
|Stephen L. Lowing, J. Tate|
|N. Bliss, H.C. Lowing|
|T.D. Pearson, H.C. Lowing|
|H.C. Lowing, F.A. Jenison|
|T.D. Pearson, G. Hubbard|
|H.D. Weatherwax, G. Hubbard|
|T.D. Pearson, G. Hubbard|
|N. Bliss, G. Hubbard|
|N. Bliss, Alex Wilson|
|W.W. Weatherwax, A. Kronemeyer|
|George Weatherwax. A. Kronemeyer|
|S. Brennan, W.D. Clark|
|S. Brennan, L. Day|
|George Weatherwax, H.W. Sweet|
|H.D. Weatherwax, H.W. Sweet|
|H.D. Weatherwax, H.W. Sweet|
|H.D. Weatherwax, A. Scott|
|H.D. Weatherwax, A. Kronemeyer|
|H.D. Weatherwax, A. Kronemeyer|
After Georgetown Township was organized they voted at Jenison for many years. Until 1847, part of Georgetown extended to the north side of the river and part of Talmadge was on the South side. In 1847, the Legislature straightened this line, so no voter crossed the river to vote. There was often, friendly rivalry between voters on opposite sides of the river. At one tie the southsiders wanted a candidate whom the north siders opposed. Just before the election (1847) the southsiders heard that Talmadge Township had been set off and those voters were to vote in Talmadge Township. For some reason the voters on the north side were not informed of the change in voting place. They arrived at Jenison and first spent time in the saloon, before going to the polls. Here they were informed they were no longer allowed to vote in Georgetown. It was too late to reach the polls in Talmadge before closing time, and the south siders candidate won.
The Daltons and Harrises always held this against Stephen Lowing for not informing them on their arrival.
Georgetown voted at Jenison until 1874 when the Georgetown Grange was organized. They met, for a few years, in homes, and then built the Grange Hall on Section 16. It was then a building 25x60 feet and 18 ft in height, costing about $900.00. The township leased this place as a voting place for 99 years.
Mail was brought into Grandville, as early as January 1833. Mr. Tucker was the first mail carrier, going once a week to Gull Prairie for it. Slater, at Grand Rapids, the Indian Missionary was the first Post Master. Mail was often held up for months before it was called for by busy pioneers. Shortly after he arrived in Michigan, an uncalled for letter was held for Stephen Lowing for months. When the first News Paper was printed in Grand Rapids, on the 18th of April 1837, called the "Grand Rapids Times" Stephen Lowing's name was published as one who had an uncalled-for letter at the Grand Rapids Post Office.
The expense of sending letters from the east to Michigan, was nearly prohibitive. From 1836 to July 1845, the cost of one closely written letter was $.25. The cost of one acre of land was between $.45 and $1.25 in Michigan, so one could not write too many letters. These letters were written on the first, second and third pages, leaving the fourth to fold and seal with wax and then address. The Post Master had no stamps, but wrote the name of the town and cost of sending, in the corner. Often whole families wrote in the letter, to fill every inch of space.
If anyone heard of a person traveling west, they were generally besieged by people to carry letters to their relatives, often walking miles to give the letters to them for delivery. Letters written between 1845 and 1850 cost $.10 and in 1850 the first envelopes appeared, but these still used no Government stamp, only a P.O. stamp the town and date. After 1855, the first stamps appeared and all letters written in the Civil War were placed in envelopes and carried postage stamps.
In 1847 the part of Talmadge, on the south side of the river was exchanged for Georgetown, which was on the north side. Stephen's land was all in Georgetown Township. This made his Post Office at Grandville, instead of Bethuel Church's store at Talmadge. In 1850 Stephen was made the first Post Master and the office was in his store. This became such a nuisance, that in 1854 it was moved to the home of Franklin Bosworth on the State Road. He kept this office until the change of administration, when it was moved to Holden Lowing's place.
After this time RFD was established.
Holden was a Democrat and Franklin Bosworth a Republican, so the Post Office was kept between the two families, depending on what party was in power at the time.
When Rural Free Delivery was established, Post Offices in homes were discontinued and Money Order Offices were maintained at Jenison and Hudsonville. There was also a Post Office at Bauer and when men took their milk and cream to the Creamery, they picked up mail for all the families on their milk routes.
The first Post Office at Jension - in 1871, with George Weatherwax as Post Master.
The first Post Office at Hudsonville (Under the name of South Georgetown ) May 1, 1868. Name changed to Hudsonville in 1872. Homer Hudson was first Post Master and John Green the second.
Bedford November 11th, 1841
Knowing that you will be glad to hear from me, I take the opportunity to write to you a few lines. I am in good health and have been ever since I left you.
You have probably heard Jabin tell where he left me. Since that I have not seen anyone who was going to Bethany. I saw Lish Gifford and talked with him some time. He and his family were well. He wanted to see Jabin before he left, but could not.
I traveled alone for two days through a country I should call rather poor, it being sandy oak openings. The third day after I left him, there was a team overtook me, that was going the same way that I was, loaded with goods.
I got the teamster to carry my baggage and I walked along in company with him, and when there was descending ground I could jump on and ride a short distance which helped me much.
I kept in company with him two days and a half. The second day, in the afternoon he got rid of his load and I rode with him seven miles further. That night and the next day I rode with him ten miles more. He then turned off to the south and I went on alone until night.
The country I passed through was some of it very good I should think, but some of it was very sandy and poor. I staid the night at the village of Ada at the mouth of the Thornapple River. Sunday morning I traveled to the village of Grand Rapids where I staid until Monday afternoon. It is a place of considerable importance in the western part of the State, as it has a salt spring and there is also plenty of limestone and plaster within three miles. Monday in the afternoon I went down river to Grandville.
The next morning I found Stephen Lowing and went with him down the river a short distance and then got on board of the steamboat and went down to the mouth of the Grand River to get my deed recorded Left my deed and came back the next day to the place I started on the boat. The following morning I got a young man to go with me to find my land
The land is heavily timbered around there for some distance. I saw some of the tallest pines there that I ever saw. The young fellow that was with me told me that he had heard of their cutting twelve, twelve foot logs from one straight tree. They are so tall that you have to look twice to see the tops of them. There are, however, but very Jew on my land My land is very near level and the timber is of different kinds There you will find beach and maple, oak, ash and hickory of the largest kinds.
I saw white ash and hickory and white oak trees between three and four feet through and from forty to fifty feet without limbs as straight as an arrow.
The soil is of black and sandy loam and in some places the subsoil is of clay. There is a road across near the middle of it where the mail is carried from Grandville to Port Sheldon.
The nearest house is Stephen Lowing's. It is about two miles and a half there. I put my initials on a tree by the side of the road so that I could find it again without tracing the lines and then started for Lowing's house, were we arrived about sundown.
We staid there until morning. He lives in a little but made of logs and covered with boards, with a blanket for a door and window. In the woods about a half a mile from the river, and when I was there he had not a single tree cut, but those he cut to make his house and cow pen.
In the morning I left there and started I knew not where finding no chance for keeping school to any advantage on account of hard times they will not give any more for teaching school there than they do in New York State and then they do not pay sometimes for two or three years and if you should be so lucky as to get it when you have earned it, perhaps you cannot get more than seventy-five cents on a dollar so I thought I would put out for the State and now I must stop my narrative and tell you where you will find me at present.
I am in the Southern part of the Buckeye State within ten miles of the Ohio River in a little log school house where I have been teaching school for three months for twelve dollars per month.
I have found Uncle Jabin and Uncle Hezekiah and a whole host of cousins. They are in the town of Bedford, Meigs County, Ohio. I found Uncle Jabin's house on the second of November about four o'clock in the afternoon.
They live some distance from any village and as there is no store in the neighborhood I did not get any paper so that I could write to you until I went to get examined for teaching school. I began this letter on the eleventh in the forenoon but in the afternoon I went about seven miles into the east part of town to see Uncle Hezekiah's folks and did not get back until Saturday. I commenced school on Monday the fifteenth. 1 am teaching in the district where Uncle Jabin lives today. I am going to go see some cousins that live fifteen miles from here and shall probably find a Post Office to put this letter in.
You must excuse my negligence in not writing before as I have not had an opportunity to send a letter if I had had it written. If you see Samuel Page, tell him that 1 am well and hope that he is the same. I want you should write tome as soon as you get this and send me magazines. No do not send magazines because they may get lost, as I am in a bye place but write me a letter and afterwards send me a paper once in awhile. You may direct yours to Chester, Meigs County, Ohio, that is ten miles from where I am but it is the most convenient place for me to get it. I have directed three papers to you since I left you but could not get time to communicate much as I found it is not often that I could find a moments time to spare. I have written this by pieces just as I could get the time.
I remain your affectionate Brother
P. S. Written with shivering fingers in a cold school house.
Robert MacLaughn - 1682, of Scotland - a seafaring man and owner of a large fleet of merchant ships, plying between the Irish Sea and the East Indies.
William Lowing after three years as a Minute Man and some other time spent in the Army, married December 24, 1780 Anna Haight, supposedly a descendent of Simon Haight, who came in the "Abigail" with his brother-in-law, Nicholas Stowers.
Probably Anna was the daughter of William Haight - granddaughter of Joseph and Margaret (-----) Haight. She was born at Crum Elbow (Nine Partners), New York, March 10, 1764 and was sixteen years old at the time of her marriage at Tinmouth, Vermont. She died August 23, 1843. They had 13 children. William died in the fall of 1802 after many years in the army.
Driving an ox team with their few belongings piled high on a cart, they staked out land in the settlement near what is now East Bloomfield. This land was well wooded and the first years were spent in cutting timber, pulling stumps and building their house and barn, and trying to grow enough food for themselves and their stock.
As the sons grew old enough they were able to help their father. Isaac and his sons were famous mowers and were hired to mow most of the farms throughout the region. They used cradles and several men followed behind to bind.
Isaac and Lavina had 6 sons and 3 daughters.
Isaac was not able to give his children much education. They usually went to school between the ages of five and ten and intermittently thereafter.
They had five children.
Thay have three children:
Simon Hoyt, son of John and Ruth (Stowers) Hoyt, born at Dorchester England January 20, 1590 - died at Stamford Connecticut September 1, 1659, according to the town records. In 1628 he came with his brother-in-law, Nicholas Stowers and the Spragues, in the ship "Abigail" with Governor John Endicott, arriving at Salem Massachusetts September 6, 1628. In the summer of 1629, he went to Charlestown as one of the first settlers, but was at Dorchester in 1650. His name on the records was Simon Hoit.
He removed to Scituate, Massachusetts where his wife joined the church, April 19, 1635. On February 28, 1640, he was granted 80- acres on the west bank of the Connecticut River. He removed to Fairfield Connecticut and bought from John Green, a home lot of three acres, March 6, 1649 and later five more lots, but was at Stamford before his death an the inventory of his estate was taken there.
ARMS: ARGENT., A LION RAMPANT SABLE, A CHIEF PER FESSE INDENTED O THE 1 ST AND 2ND
(CREST: A TOWER GUILE - OUT OF THE BATTLEMENT A DEMI-LION RAMPANT SABLE.)
Descendants of John & Ruth (Stowers) Hoyt
Simon Hoyt (Hoit) remarried Susannah Smith (Second Wife) after coming to America. Susannah survived him and married Robert Bates. She died at Stamford Connecticut 1674. - Children born in New England:
Many of the Haights were Quakers or Friends - Anna retained her friendship for them. When William was a boy in Jamaica, the Friends were active there and his mother had always been friendly toward them.
Anna was born at Crum Elbow, New York, March 10, 1764 and from there moved with her parents to Tinmouth Vermont. She was the daughter of William, youngest son of Joseph Haight. Her father was a strict orthodox Quaker and owned a farm not far from the meeting house. When the split came between the Liberal young people and the older Orthodox members, Anna joined the liberals, much against her father's anger and the inability to control his own daughter, caused a break in her father's prestige, both in church and community. From the Dissenting members, a Baptist church was formed at Danby.
After William's death, Anna tried to operate the mill and manage the family finances, but James, the eldest son had bought a farm at Tinmouth & Stanton was too young to help. The purchasers of the Harrington Sawmill, tried to buy the Lowing mill with its better water advantages, but their price was so small that she refused to sell.
After this they bribed any help she hired, until there was no one to he lp her - business declined and she was forced to take out a mortgage on the mill. This she could never pay and so lost the property to the owner of the rival mill.
James sold his property to try to help her and so lost his also. Before the year was out, Anna and her family returned to Danby where they owned a small tract of land with a house on it.
Susanna, Deborah and Stephen were married from this house, James Tinmouth. He was of Quaker descent. He lived 17 years after this marriage and died at Lewis, Essex County New York. having married in 1802.
Ten years after William's death, Anna married William Vaughan. After William Vaughan's death Anna visited all her children and finally settled down to live with James at East Gainsville, New York (Now Silver Springs). The home with all its effects at Lewis, was burned and among the things lost was the War record of William. When she applied for a pension, she had to take that of a private, for the commission as Captain was gone. She died August 23, 1845 at East Gainsville, New York.
The children of William and Anna Haight Lowing:
From Cuyler Reynold's History of the Hudson River Valley.
The Lampmans of Coxsackie, Greene County, New York were descended from ancestors from Palatin Germany.
The Emigrant ancestor settled in Greene County at the south of Greene's Hill in the town of Coxsackie.
Stephen Lampman born Greene County about 1760 married and had issue Peter, son of above born about 1760 married and had issue.
John Peter born September 17, 1792 died January 2, 1855 married Abigail King, born November 11, 1795 died January 2, 1882. They removed from King's Hill, some three miles to the eastward, where they settled on a farm.
Obadiah born on the Greene County homestead, upon which his parents settled prior to his birth, May 25, 1818 died at Coxsackie, 1902, married Elizabeth Vandenberg, born November 22, 1817 died October 31, 1890 daughter of Peter Vandenberg. Five children.
It would appear that John Peter could be the brother of Lavina and Stephen who married Susanna Lowing in 1812.
Lavina Lampman married Isaac Lowing 1814.
Rachel Lampman (a descendant of Stephen) born August 26, 1824, died March 4, 1910 married Richard, son of Henry and Rebecca (VanLoon) Vandenberg born February 8, 1817 died July 21, 1860. He was a farmer.
Lampman Family 1897.
I am a direct descendent of Susanna Lowing--grandson of Sylvester Orrin Lampman and son of Mary Ann Lampman and William Lyman Bowen. I own the mimeod Lowing book Ruth provided and have enjoyed it greatly. Any other Web sites on the Lowings you could recommend? Thanks. Larry Bowen, Fairfax, VA
Taken in 1897. My grandfather Sylvester Orrin Lampman was 18 and is standing second to the right in the back row. All remained in Iowa.
The ancestor of this family was the Right Honorable Richard Brinley Sheridan, M.P. orator and author who was born at Dublin, Ireland, September 1751 -youngest son of Thomas by his wife Frances Chamberlaine (the accomplished author of Sidney Biddolph) who was born at Quilco, Co. Cavan 1721. Thomas was the son of Reverend Thomas Sheridan, D.D. ( a friend of Dean Swift) born 1684 in county Cavan. This Thomas was the son of Thomas who obtained a fellowship at Trinity College, Dublin, which he had obliged to resign on becoming a Catholic, and in 1680 was imprisoned for supposed complicity in a "Popish plot" but was subsequently knighted by James II, who made him his secretary. This last mentioned Thomas was a brother of the Ft Rev. William Sheridan, Bishop of Kilmore, who was born at Togher, co. Cavan, about 1655, and both were sons of Reverend Dionlysius Sheridan, once a Catholic Clergyman, who was converted to Protestantism by the Bishop of Bedell.
ARMS: OR, A LION RAMPANT, BETWEEN 3 TREFOILS VERT. CREST: OUT OF A DUCAT CORONET OR, A STAGS HEAD PROPER.
(Gold shield, a lion rampant, between 3 trefoils green)
Out of a ducal coronet, gold, a stag's head in natural colors)
In January, 1775 Richard's Comedy, the Rivals - was bought out at Covent Garden and his School for Scandal Later.
Thomas Sheridan (1818-1891) was of Chapel Izod, by Dublin, Ireland, married at Blanchartown February 13, 1843 to Susan Lambert - born 1823 - Died November 17,1905.
Susan always said she was 12 years old when Victoria was crowned.
Mary - born October 6, 1888, at Allendale, married October 29, 1913 - Roy H., son of Holden C. and Eleanor (Chapin Woodruff) Lowing - Living 1952.
John born April 12, 1862, at Blyhe, Ontario - married December 12, 1887, Nellie Daughter of Franklin and Mary Jeanette (Lowing) Bosworth, born December 18 ,1861 - died at Allendale, Michigan
ARMS: OR, THREE BARS GULES
CREST: A ROSE GULES, SEEDED AND BARBED PROPER
(Gold, Three Bars Red. A Rose, Red, Seeded and Barbed Natural Colors.)
The name Stower (later Stowers) is rarely heard except in West Dorsetshire. It is from Stour Parish (now East and West Stour) on the river of the same name, in Dorsetshire, England. In the Visitation of Dorsetshire in 1623 is found the record - "Jon Bowdich married Julian, daughter of Nicholas de Stowre."
Walter Stowers, of Dorsetshire is known to have had the following children. His wife's name is unknown.
• Nicholas, with Simon Hoyt (Haight) and the Spragues, from Upway Parish Dorsetshire, came to the New England in the ship "Abigail" with Governor John
Endicott, arriving at Salem Massachusetts September 6, 1628. He was a member of the Boston Church in 1630 and was made a Freeman of Boston, May 18 of that year. On November 2, 1632, he and his wife Amy and children "entered the covenant" at the first church of Charlestown, Massachusetts. He died there May 17, 1646, leaving widow Amy and children; Richard, born England married Hannah daughter of Henry Frost of Ipswich, Suffolk - Joanna, Joseph born Boston
February 12, 1632 - Abigail born 1636 Sarah a daughter who married a Mr Farr and John who died prior to August 15, 1638.
Deborah - born Dorchester, England May 1, 1593, died probably Dorchester, Massachusetts about 1634. She married at Epway in the Parish church, in 1612, Simon Son of John and Ruth Hoyt of Upway.