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"ONE TOWNSHIP'S YESTERDAYS"
By Edwin Corwin
XXV. THE PIONEER CONQUERS
"Conquering, holding, daring, venturing as we go the unknown ways,
Pioneers? O pioneers!"
... Walt Whitman.
THE PIONEER CAME TO UNION TOWNSHIP, saw that the land was good ... and conquered. It was the conquest no doubt that put him to the supreme test, that tried his courage and mettle. far greater than did the migration, notwithstanding the hardships and privations suffered on the way it. The journey was long, but not so long as the proving-up after the arrival. The destination of the overland trek was much more definite and sure than was the outcome of the struggle that followed and the rightful reward to be earned through labor in the wilderness.
As soon as the pioneer arrived, he took up the battle of life again, "and right manfully was it pressed to a glorious victory," says McDonald Immediately he set to work, built a shelter of the roughest kind, chopped down the trees of the forest. and began to clear the land, first the higher ground and, later on, the lower, which lie drained. Here he settled among the "wild men of the forest and the wolves and wild beasts of prey that infested the country." Here first he erected a wigwam of brush and poles and built a campfire; then was "the axe laid at the root of the tree." Alone he came, in advance of his family, "In the lonely woods, away from friends and family, the original pioneer labored, day in and day out, clearing a little 'patch' of ground and preparing a rude log cabin for the reception of his wife and little ones."
The pioneer stock of this township was all that could be desired. "No better class of people could be found any place," says McDonald. "They were the cream of the settlements they had left; resolute and determined; moral, honest, upright and generally of a religious turn or mind, and were social and neighborly" to an extent almost unknown in later years. "Many of them were fairly well educated and all were endowed with what is commonly known as 'good common sense.' Everything goes to show that. They laid the foundations of our present county government broad and deep, firm and solid. They began at once to build schoolhouses and provide places of worship." They provided for law and order, for civic progress, and for the relief of the helpless poor and. those in sorrow and distress.
They cleared the land; they plowed and sowed the ground. Soon they "erected saw mills and grist mills, and brick yards, blacksmith and wagon shops; cut out and bridged, and made the roads passable; established mail routes and stage lines; opened up facilities for trade and reciprocal intercourse with neighboring towns and villages; elected officers who set the legal machinery to work, all of which gave us the start that has brought us on and up to our present advanced stage of civilization."
As has been justly said, "Those were days that tested true friendship. The question was never asked: `Who is my neighbor'?' All were neighbors. All were friends."
It is difficult for us to picture today a country without roads or bridges, but such was Union Township in those long years ago. "He who did the milling for the neighborhood," McDonald relates, "blazed his way as he went, and if he succeeded in making the trip to Delphi or Logansport, the nearest grist mills, and return in a week or ten days he was applauded as having accomplished a great feat."
Stubborn perseverance at length triumphed. The pioneer conquered. The "howling wilderness" was subdued.
Who were these first comers to Union Township? Perhaps no complete list of them has ever been compiled. In 1890, Alexander C. Thompson published the names of some of them. He listed the following as having been among the early settlers of this township, who came prior to the year 1840:
Vincent Bickel, Vincent Brownlee, Antos Brown, Joseph Conklin, Elias B. Dickson, Platt B. Dickson, Hugh B. Dickson, Bayless L. Dickson, John B. Dickson, George Francis, Daniel C. Hults, Joseph L. Hults, Uriah S. Hults, James Houghton, Emery Hallett, George Jessup, Theophilus Jones, Noah S. Lawson, George C. Lawson, John Lindsey, William I. Lewis, James Logan, Ephraim Moore, Levi Moore, Elihu Morris. Samuel McDonald, Thomas McDonald, James Moore, David C. Morris, William McMillen, Ransom H. Norris, George M. Osborne, Tivis Porter, Robert S. Piper, Daniel Roming, John A. Shirley, Samuel Shirley, Reuben F. Shirley, George S. Stone, Eleazer Thompson, William Thompson, William E. Thompson. Lewis Thompson, John Thompson, John H. Voreis, Abraham Voreis, David R. Voreis, Ezra Willard, and George W. Wilson.
Of these, all had passed away prior to 1890, except Hugh B. Dickson, who then resided in Indianapolis; George C. Lawson, who around that time was known to be living in Missouri; Reuben F. Shirley, near Sterling Illinois; William E. Thompson, near Lincoln, Nebraska; and David R. Voreis, who alone out of all his old neighbors and acquaintances of those pioneer days was still living in Union Township. That was some forty-five years ago. What changes have come to pass since then! And what sadness has been known in the departure from this world of the last of the pioneers!
|XXVI. "FIRST FAMILIES"|
"Still be ours the diet "hard, and the blanket on the ground, Pioneers! n Pioneers!"
... Walt Whitman
COURAGEOUS SETTLERS WERE THEY, those first' comers. They, the. pioneers of Union
Township, in their faith and works, left an indelible mark on the pages of our history, and a pattern to guide succeeding generations. Today, we little realize how great is our debt to those who so carefully paved the way, covering the rough spots, smoothing out the harshness of the wilderness, so that we of this day and age may go our ways in comfort and in peace.
If we look to the records that remain, scant though they be, and find what we may concerning those first comers, we may profit by learning about the lives they lived, the struggles they made, the vast efforts they put forth, the joys they experienced and the sorrows and disappointments they suffered.
We may ask: Who were they? Whence came they? What beginnings did they make? How did they live and progress? And "what did they do to be saved," In the midst of perils, that their works should so live after them, an endowment in perpetuity for the welfare of the generations to come?
What indeed did they do to he saved? First and foremost, they were not theorists; they were doers. They were doers in a raw country that demanded doing. It was a case of do or die. Had they not been doers, they would not have survived. With hands and hearts they labored. Great was their endurance, strong their faith, without which they could not have been saved, without which they could not have been spared to complete the tasks so heroicly undertaken.
That we may know them better, the pioneers of Union Township, let us turn the pages, Yellowed in the passage, of time, and obtain from the records a few glimpses of those "first families."
MORRIS Isaac N. Morris, a native of Rush County, Indiana settled in Union Township in 1836. He was a pioneer of the Burr Oak Flats, where he located, about three miles from Culver. In 1850, he removed to the wild country about Lake Maxinkuckee and became the pioneer boat builder of the region. He died at the age of thirty-nine. His wife, Emily Thompson, lived to be nearly eighty. There were two sons and four daughters. The third child and second son of this family was Edmund, who was but three years of age when his parents fixed the homestead on the shores of Lake Maxinkuckee. This boy followed in his father's footsteps, for it was he who became Captain Edmund Morris, sometimes known as Edward, the prominent builder and owner of boats used on Maxinkuckee. Born in Union Township, March 7, 1847, he grew to manhood close to the lake he loved, and early became an expert at his father's occupation. He assisted his father in the boat building business, and, besides, drove a hack and engaged in other kinds of work. Later, he set out for himself as a tiller of the soil, but finally went back to the boats and remained with them throughout all the sunset years of his life.
HOUGHTON. James Houghton was one of the pioneers of '36. Born in England in 1797, he came to the United States when a young man and settled in Rush County, Indiana, where lie located on a farm and continued the avocation to which he had been trained. For some time he followed his trade of coach and wagon making, at which he was an expert. While in Rush County, he married Hannah Morris, who was born in Ohio, December 8, 1800. James and Hannah Houghton came to Union Township in 1836. He had entered 160 acres of government land, and immediately began its improvement, developing in the course of time a most excellent farm. After clearing and putting under the plow a large portion of this tract, he sold the property and purchased a farm near Culver, which remained his homestead until his death. The children of James and Hanna Houghton were nine in number: Phoebe, John, Thomas, Clarissa, Rachael, William, Elvira, Edward and Jefferson, all born in Indiana. Thomas, who became, a prosperous farmer, stock raiser and land owner in this township, was born in Rush County, January 4, 1829. He was seven years old when his parents came to settle down in the wilds a short distance from Maxinkuckee lake. The district schools of the township served primarily to give Thomas an education, although his father took much interest in his mental improvement and taught him how to read. He attended the country schools at intervals, while he grew to manhood on the farm, becoming early familiar with the rugged duties of agriculture. While still a boy he was apprenticed to a harness maker at Plymouth, learned the trade and acquired considerable proficiency in it. But, after completing his term, he returned to his father's farm, of which he assumed the management. He was married March 27, 1851, to Nancy McCormick Mitchell, daughter of James Mitchell, of Union Township. She died in 1854. Mr. Houghton was married twice, subsequent to the loss of his first wife. Following his first marriage, in 1851, he removed to the homestead farm on the Burr Oak road, about midway between Burr Oak arid Culver. The farm at that time consisted of 160 acres, and later, 327 acres. He also became the owner of two other farms of 166 acres, all in Union Township. The homestead farm on the Burr Oak road is today occupied by a son, Ralph. Thomas Houghton died in 1915, at the age of 89 years.
THOMPSON. Lewis Thompson the pioneer, was born December 20, 1804, in Bracken County, Kentucky, was by occupation farmer, politically a Democrat and a member of the Christian or Disciples Church. He was married to Phebe Dickson, February 27, 1825. Of their children, William D., Alexander C., Nancy J. and Julia A. grew to maturity The Thompson family came to Union Township in the migration of '36. William D. Thompson who was nine at the time of their coming, having been born in Fayette County, Indiana, March 4, 1827, traces the line of ancestry back through several generations to his great grandfather, James Thompson, who came to this country and settled in that part of the District of Columbia taken off the State of Maryland, where William Thompson, his grandfather, was born in 1776. In 1798, he was married to Nancy Lewis, and moved to Bracken County, Kentucky, about 1800. He and his father were Baptist ministers, but after moving to Fayette County, Indiana, in 1816, he severed his connection with the Baptist Church and became identified with the Disciples, of which denomination he was also a minister until his death. He assisted in the organization of a number of congregations in Fayette and other counties, and also preached in Marshall County, after settling here in 1836. On coming to this region, he purchased a large tract of land near Maxinkuckee lake, on which he and his children settled, He reared a family of four sons and four daughters. Mary became the wife of Elias Dickson, of Union Township. William L. went to Lincoln, Nebraska. William D. Thompson was married February 14, 1850, to Amanda Logan, daughter of Thomas Logan. The Logans were also pioneers, settling in this part of the country at about the same time as did the Thompsons. There were four children: Phebe C., Laura, E., Albertus C., and Olive M. William D. Thompson held the office of Justice of the Peace in Union Township for four years ending in 1858, and was Center Township Trustee from April, 1882 to 1886. He was a Democrat. For a number of years he was an elder in the Christian Church of Plymouth. The anniversary of the arrival of the Thompson family upon the banks of Maxinkuckee, July 26, 1836, has been observed throughout the years, the members having established the custom of visiting the lake and the old homestead at that time. Other Thompson families settled in this part of the country at early dates. Among them was the family of John L. and Sarah (VanSickle) Thompson, natives of Kentucky and Germany respectively, who were early settlers of Illinois and who located near Wolf Creek Mill, Green Township, in 1834. James Thompson, for many years a prominent citizen of Marshall County, was one of the original pioneers of the southwestern part of what is now Center Township. After partly clearing a farm there, he moved to the northeast corner of West Township. He was a Virginian by birth, and his ancestry was purely American, according to family records and traditions. His father was Larkin Thompson.
McDONALD. The McDonalds, with others of the first migration, arrived in Union Township a short distance east of Maxinkuckee lake, July 26,1836. In the fall of 1835, Thomas McDonald came from southern Indiana and bought a piece of land near Maxinkuckee's shores. He built a log cabin upon this land, and in the spring of 1836 brought his family and began the labor of a pioneer in a new country. In their little cabin in the wilderness Thomas and Elizabeth (Dickson) McDonald made their home and raised a family, of which they well might be proud. They brought with them from southern Indiana a boy who, when he grew to manhood, became a great credit to his pioneer, parents. His name was Daniel. He was born in Fayette County, Indiana, near Connersville, May 6, 1833. His school education was confined to a few terms in the log schoolhouses of the pioneer days, besides such education as he received by experience. His school days were all spent in this vicinity; he was only three years old when the family arrived in the township. Early in his career he was a telegraph operator and station agent, then was a bank cashier, and as a practical printer entered the newspaper field and for thirty years was editor and publisher of the "Plymouth Democrat." He held several positions during his lifetime, which were of a civic nature, including clerk of the Marshall circuit court and member of the Indiana legislature. He was Democratic candidate for Congress from the Thirteenth. District in 1880, a delegate to the Democratic national convention at St. Louis in 1876 and Chicago in 1884, and for several years member of the Democratic state committee and chairman of the district committee. Though Plymouth became his place of permanent residence, Daniel McDonald was considered by the people of the Maxinkuckee region as "one of us." He had his summer home on the east side of the lake, and by his kindly deeds and his friendly spirit endeared himself to folk for miles around.
No mention of Union Township personalities would be complete without ample reference to McDonald the historian. His abilities were many. His major interests were history and politics. Not only was he a most accurate and painstaking writer of historical themes, but also he was a gifted orator. He was extremely fond of Lake Maxinkuckee the historical and romantic background of which he extolled by the diligent use of a facile pen. He contributed numerous articles to the newspapers of the county Indian lore especially interested him and he wrote exhaustively on the subject of the aboriginal inhabitants of this region. While at his "Maxinkuckee home," he did a great deal of writing, and one frequently finds "Pottawattamie Reservation" inscribed beneath his signature. Among his works were two histories of Marshall County, one of Lake Maxinkuckee, one of the removal of the Indians. and one of Free Masonry in Indiana. His father established the "Marshall County Democrat" in 1855, and the paper afterward was principally owned or edited by himself or sons.
The pioneer McDonalds assisted in setting the machinery of local government in motion and lived in every way honorable and upright lives. All the original Brownlees, Logans, Dicksons, Thompsons and McDonalds, with the exception of Mrs. Martha McDonald-Thompson, had passed away by 1904, when on June 5th over fifty of the descendant; assembled at the residence of Mr. and Mrs. Thomas McDonald, five miles southwest of Plymouth, in the McDonald family reunion. Many of the relatives who had never seen each other before met there for the first time.
Regarding family ties, it was said: "They were married and inter-married in so many devious ways that the most expert genealogist has never been able to decipher the relationship." Daniel McDonald and W. D. Thompson, both of whom came to this county and to Lake Maxinkuckee as boys in the summer of '36, were very much alive at the reunion of '04. Both talked about early family history. The two were then among the oldest residents of the county. Both had gone to Plymouth from their pioneer homes near Maxinkuckee; both were lifelong residents of the county.
An organization was effected in 1904 by the election of Thomas McDonald as president; Mrs. Jane Mosher and Mrs. Rebecca Osborn, vice presidents; and John McDonald, secretary. The object was to provide for the holding of the McDonald reunions and to perpetuate family traditions.
LAWSON. The Lawsons were of the migration of '36. It is recorded that Noah S. and George C. Lawson both came to Union Township before 1840. Noah and Nancy (Thompson) Lawson were natives respectively of Kentucky and Rush County, Indiana. Both died in early life, leaving two children, a son, Charles A., and a daughter, Marietta, who in 1860 became the wife of John W. Leland. Marietta was born in Union Township, May 3, 1843. She was about two years of age when her parents died. Noah Lawson followed the carpenter's trade. His political affiliations were with the Whigs.
NORRIS. Here is one family of those that came to Union Township in '36, that did not come in from the south. The Norris family came through from Vermont, a northerly State in the New England group, and from the north their overland trek led ultimately to Union Township and to Maxinkuckee shores. John Norris was the migrating ancestor who came from the rock-ribbed country of Vermont, a hill country that built sturdiness of body and of character. John Norris and his wife, with their eight small children, struck westward from Vermont. At length they came to the waters of the inland lakes. They crossed Lake Erie to Detroit. There, the father bought an ox team and a covered wagon. They were not content to remain; they would go farther. They journeyed in the covered wagon from Detroit in a southwesterly direction until they came at last to a point about three miles east of Lake Maxinkuckee, where, they stopped on land that is now the Ezra Hibray farm, not far from the Maxinkuckee village that was to be, a few years later. The Norris family arrived in 1836. The spot where they stopped looked good. They decided to make it the end of their long journey. They stayed. One of the eight children was named Ransom, and when he grew up he bought the farm adjoining his father's. This farm is now occupied by Everett M. Norris. It is located on the Norris Road and is known widely for its orchards. Ransom Norris purchased it from the Erie Canal Company and paid $1.25 an acre for it. The Canal Company had obtained the land from the government, it is asserted, as pay for digging the Erie Canal. The company got a tremendous tract when land was almost worthless. The name of Ransom H. Norris is given by the historian Thompson in the list of Union Township pioneers who settled prior to 1840. The Norris Inlet, a stream tributary to Lake Maxinkuckee, was so named due to its nearness to the Norris land. A grandson of Ransom Norris and great grandson of the pioneer John Norris resides today in Culver, in the person of Dr. Norman S. Norris, a leader in the ranks of the dental fraternity. Dr. Norris has practiced in Culver since his graduation from the Indiana Dental College in 1904. He was born in West Township, September 6, 1879. His father, Harvey Ransom Norris, was born near Lake Maxinkuckee in 1851, and his mother, nee Louisa Adler, was a native of Stark County, Ohio.
LOGAN. James W. Logan came to Union Township from Rush County, Indiana, in 1836, with his father, Henry Logan, who was one of the early ministers of this region. The elder Logan was generally referred to in the early days as Uncle Henry Logan, the preacher. Some of the first religious services in the township were held at the house of Grandfather William Thompson. Uncle Henry Logan preached there and at other places in the vicinity. The name of James Logan appears among those of the township's first comers. Dr. Thomas Logan, who came with those who arrived in 1836, was the first doctor who practiced the profession in this region, and one of the first to settle permanently in the county. Amanda, a daughter of Thomas Logan, married William D. Thompson in 1850. James W. Logan, the pioneer, married Anna Brooke, whose family were also early settlers of the county. A son, Harley A. Logan, became a prominent attorney and Democratic leader at the county seat.
BROWNLEE. The Brownlees of Union Township and elsewhere trace their ancestry back to James, who came to America in early days from the highlands of Scotland and who married Jean Rankin in Pennsylvania. His son James served in the first Indiana Assembly. Vincent Brownlee was among the first settlers in the northeastern part of the township, and was officially listed as having come prior to 1840. He arrived in '36. The house where school was first taught in this township was located in Section 11. The land was then owned and occupied by Vincent Brownlee, later by Jeremiah Mosher, and later still by Elsworth Thompson. Hugh Brownlee afterward taught school in the new log schoolhouse built near by. Around 1880, a small parcel of land was in the name of Vincent Brownlee, located in tile southwestern corner of Section 13, oil the dirt road leading east from Lake Maxinkuckee at the K. K. Culver cottage. Vincent Brownlee was among the petitioners for the organization of Union Township. Johnson Brownlee was one of the settlers before 1840 in the territory of what is now Center, Bourbon and West Townships. The Brownlees were also among the first families of the neighborhood south of Lake Maxinkuckee in which was located the Mt. Pleasant school. Lizzie Brownlee, in somewhat later years, taught school there.
DICKSON, Prominent among the first comers were the Dicksons, whose line of descent goes back to Christopher Elias Dickson and his wife, Phebe Lewis-Bayless. From his home on the island of Jersey, Christopher Elias set forth, following the westward trend that led at last to the banks of Maxinkuckee, an important stopping place in the family migration. Platt B. Dickson and his sons, John, Bayless, Elias and Hugh, settled in the northeastern part of the township in 1836. Their lands were in what is now the Rutland neighborhood. The names of the father and his four boys appear officially in the records as, having settled in the township prior to 1840. These brothers went into the business of making brick not long after the family settled here, Their brick yard was on Platt Dickson's farm, and although their methods were quite primitive they managed to turn out products of good quality that stood the test of time. A rather superior grade of clay was obtained from a bank opened a mile west on the farm of John Dickson, out of which it was found fairly good bricks could be manufactured. The Dicksons made bricks for the chimney and fireplace of the township's first log schoolhouse. In fact, the bricks so used came from the first kiln ever burnt in the county. The members of this family were so active in early affairs of Marshall County that it would be a long tale that would take care of half the details. Hugh B. Dickson taught for a while in the first schoolhouse mentioned, located on the Brownlee tract. Platt B., Elias and John Dickson were among the petitioners for the organization of Union Township. The list of names of those who voted at the election in Union Township, held August 6, 1838, at the house of William Thompson, includes that of Platt B. Dickson. Only eight voted. Bayless Dickson laid out Uniontown, June 8, 1844. He was called the "Proprietor" on the statement of the original plat of the town, which in the course of time became Marmont and finally Culver. Hugh B. Dickson was the longest lived of the boys. At the age of "three score and ten," around 1890, according to historian Thompson, lie was still hale and hearty, walked "as straight as an Injun," and gave promise of living many years longer to run his very successful business in Indianapolis.
HULTS. Daniel C. Hults and his sons, Joseph and Uriah, were among the first settlers of what is now the Rutland neighborhood. They located on the "prairie" as it was called in early times where "Uncle Platt Dickson" and others lived, southwest of where Wolf Creek Mills formerly were. This was on the early traveled route from Winamac to the land office at LaPorte and to Chicago, with its banks and blossoming commercial possibilities. Daniel C., Joseph L., and Uriah S. Hults were listed in the township census as having settled here prior to 1840. Daniel C. Hults had removed from the State of New York to Marion County, Indiana. In 1836, the family came to Marshall County. Daniel C. Hults at once became an active participant in the affairs of this new country. He was among the petitioners for the organization of Union Township. Uriah was born January 22, 1823, in Marion County. His education was obtained through the subscription schools of the early days and his own efforts. At an early age he learned to follow the plow, and engaged in agriculture until his death, December 2, 1880. His father, Daniel, died in 1841, and Uriah became the mainstay of the family and took upon himself the management of the home farm. He was a member of the Reformed Church. On May 7, 1864, he married Hannah Engle. There were two children, Carrie Belle and Cora Dove. Around 1880, the U. S. Hults land in Union Township consisted of two parcels close to and adjoining the present settlement of Rutland, and bounded by lands of Cavender, Hand, Leland, Benner, Berlin, and Dickson, in Sections 1 and 12.
VOREIS. The Voreis family of Union Township originated in Holland. The first Abraham Voreis of the line was a native of that land of wooden shoes, windmills and dikes. He was born in the city of Amsterdam in 1768, and came to America in 1785, "to improve his fortune." With him came his widowed mother. Abraham Voreis proceeded westward as rapidly as possible. He was a farmer by occupation, but always on the move. It seems that he was in New Jersey for a while, perhaps only a brief time, and early settled in Pennsylvania. Then he proceeded to Kentucky and from there to Ohio, where he lived in Preble and Butler counties. The next stage of the migration brought the family to Union County, Indiana. Again they moved, locating in Rush County, Indiana, about the year 1832. It has been said: "Lastly, they came to Indiana," which is true, for it was in Indiana that the family halted, to remain, to settle down and to stay, their wanderings at an end. Marshall County bade them welcome in 1836. Union Township claimed them Here they stayed. Abraham Voreis, the first, never moved up to Union Township himself, officially. He remained in southern Indiana. He died in the summer of 1860, (in 1855, another historian says), aged around ninety years. He was "strong and brave and not afraid of work," it has been said. The old family records were burned when the homestead near Burr Oak was destroyed therefore much of the early chronicle of the Voreises is rather hazy as to details. The family was large, and it is difficult to figure out all the connections. Abraham, the first, married Elizabeth Downey. There were some twenty children, four of whom came to Union and Green Townships Of these four, John H. settled on the Burr Oak Flats, while James, David R., and Abraham (the second located east of Lake Maxinkuckee. Each took about 160 acres to begin with. The three who settled east of the lake map have come ahead of John H., for he first came alone, locating north of Plymouth.
John H. Voreis came to Union Township through the influence of his wife's people, the Morris family, who had land near Lake Maxinkuckee. He was three times married. By his marriage with Phoebe Morris he had five children, William, Milton, Abraham, Elizabeth, and John M. Of these children, William D. (born in 1834) married Maria Dunfee; Milton died early; Abraham married Rebecca Henderson; Elizabeth remained unmarried; and John M. (born in 1829) married in 1867 Agnes McElvaine of Plymouth. By his marriage with Mrs. Eleanor (Jacobs) Henderson, widow of Nathan Henderson, John H. Voreis had four children, George W. (born in 1846), Benjamin and Rachel (both unmarried), and Louisa, wife of Samuel Loring of this county. By his marriage with Matilda Coun, John H. Voreis had one child, deceased.
To consider some of the personal history of John H. Voreis, the pioneer of '36, it might be of interest. He was born in Kentucky, it is claimed in 1803. Another authority says he was a native of Ohio. However, be, came to Marshall County in 1836, settling in Union Township that year or the next Here he purchased a quarter section of land and cleared a farm. He accumulated about nine hundred acres before his death in 1863 or '64. Parcels of this Voreis land were scattered all over the northwestern part of the township, in the Burr Oak neighborhood. He was familiarly known as "Preacher John," because he preached in the Christian Church. He was married in 1828 and his wife, Pboebe Morris, died soon after they came to Union Township. The country was new and she had the fever so prevalent then. John H. Voreis married the widow Henderson in this township.
The old homestead near Burr Oak burned to the ground close to forty years ago. Many prized family possessions and heirlooms were destroyed. The land where the commodious house stood is now owned by Ed Poland. An old pin tree that once rose beside the homestead, still stands, a scraggy relic and reminder of the olden times.
John M. Voreis, a son of John H. and Phoebe (Morris) Voreis, lived until late years, a picturesque figure, a patriarch of these parts. He was known as "Old Uncle Johnny." He was born in Rush County, Indiana, August 9, 1829, and was reared to manhood chiefly in Union Township, receiving a practical English education in the common school and when old enough beginning life for himself as a farmer. He was widely known as a stock-raiser. He came to this township as a boy of about eight years. In her history of Marshall County, Minnie H. Swindell inserted an excellent picture of him, as he appeared in his later days', in the open, axe in hand, engaged in the work he was never afraid of. She spoke of him as "the only living resident who was here when the county was organized." The book was published in 1923, and it was soon afterward the " Uncle Johnny" passed away at the ripe old age of ninety-four. He was well and worked until the end. He died in a harness.
Abraham, another son of John H. Voreis and a brother of John M., was born in Rush County, Indiana, December 28, 1830, came to Marshall County early in the thirties, received a fair educational training in the country schools, and began his life work as a farmer, continuing such until his death. He was married in1864 to Rebecca Henderson, daughter of Nathan and Eleanor Jacobs Henderson. After the marriage, they settled in Union Township on the farm that was their home until his death in 1874.
The descendants of John H. Voreis, the pioneer, who are still living in Union Township are the following: George W. Voreis, a lifelong resident of the township, who today, in 1934, makes his home in Culver and is eighty-eight years of age. A son of John H. and Eleanor (Jacobs-Henderson) Voreis, he was born in this township, July 12, 1846. For a number of years he followed the trade of painting and paper hanging. In his younger days he taught school. He was always a prominent figure in public affairs, and for some years has held the office of Justice of the Peace. Politically, he is a staunch Democrat.
Mrs. Rebecca Robinson, of Culver; M. L. Voreis, of Plymouth and Burr Oak; and Mrs. Ellen Hatten and family, of Culver, all trace their descent from John H. and Phoebe (Morris) Voreis through William D., the son of the pioneer, who went to Nebraska. The children of William D. Voreis were Rebecca (Robinson), George, Charles, Sarah, Ellen (Hatten), and M. L., or "Lafe." M. L. Voreis has property near Burr Oak and is a part-time resident there. He has a home in Plymouth.
All the Voreises who settled in Union and Green Townships in early times were of one family connection. Some remained in the southern part of the State; the others who came north settled within a range of a few miles of one another. Turning now from the John H. Voreis colonization of the Burr Oak Flats, we find of interest the early settlements of the three other pioneer sons of Abraham Voreis, the first; namely, James, David R., and Abraham, the second, who located on lands east of Lake Maxinkuckee.
Among those given as early settlers of Union Township prior to 1840 were John H., Abraham and David R. Voreis. Abraham Voreis, Jr., was also listed as among the first settlers of Green Township. James likewise was mentioned as a Green Township settler. Both he and Abraham located near Wolf Creek. David was not far away, in the northeastern part of Union Township. He was in the colony of pioneers that took up lands in what is now the Rutland neighborhood. Prior to 1880, land was in the name of D. R. Voreis northeast of Lake Maxinkuckee. David R . and James, both of whom were living as late as 1890, cast their votes in Center Township in the first election after the organization of the county, held August 5, 1836.
In 1835, when this was a wild western region, on the very border of civilization, James Voreis came from Rush County to settle in a new country. He entered land in Green Township, and in 1836, the year following his arrival, brought his family. The land settled on consisted of 120 acres of timber land, which he had previously purchased. He also walked to LaPorte and entered a claim to 160 acres of timber land which is today in Center Township. At that time, the land was in dense forest growth. Upon his Green Township property, James Voreis built his first log cabin. Afterward, he entered 160 acres in what is now Union Township. With his wife and children, he began pioneer life in the little cabin home, which they occupied until he was able to build a frame house. James was born in Barren County, Kentucky, February 2, 1806, and when a small boy was taken by his parents, Abraham and Elizabeth (Downey) Voreis, to Preble County, Ohio, then on to Union and Rush counties, Indiana, where he grew to manhood. He was in Rush County in the '20s, being one of the pioneer farmers there. Reared a tiller of the soil, he at the age of twenty-one began the pursuit of agriculture for himself. He farmed in Rush County until he came to Marshall County to settle on the land he had purchased from the government. James was married to Elizabeth Pollard in Rush County, January 15, 1831. They had nine children: Mary, William W., Elizabeth, Malinda, David R., Samantha, Jonas L., Thomas L., and George Washington, all of whom died prior to 1908 except William W., and George, who was known to be living recently in Mishawaka with one of his sons. Thomas L., born in 1848, married Harriet Clevenger. William W. was born in Rush County in 1834. He assisted his father in clearing the wilderness and as the opportunity presented attended the subscription schools, living at home until he was twenty-six, when he bought 160 acres, covered with forest, and there built a log cabin. In 1862, he married Sarah Siple. His second wife was Mrs. Martha Miller. Jonas L. was born in this region, and died in 1902, aged fifty-seven. He married Rachel A. Marks. They had eight children: six sons and two daughters. Among them was Francis M. Near Maxinkuckee village today (in 1934), Frank Voreis still resides amid surroundings that witnessed the pioneer beginnings and struggles of the family. Daniel C., another son of James, became Sheriff of Marshall County. After sixteen years on the homestead farm, this boy went to Union Township and worked for his father in the manufacture of brick and tile. The pioneer James, known as "Uncle Jim," had purchased 420 acres of land altogether for himself and his father, Abraham. After losing his first wife, James married Mrs. Lucretia Thompson (nee Bodkins). For many years, he resided in Green Township, one mile south of Wolf Creek Mills. He raised a large family, most of whom lived near him during the development of this part of the country, and lived to be very old, not far below the century mark.
David R. Voreis, another pioneer son of the first Abraham and a younger brother of James, was born in 1812 in Preble County, Ohio, and accompanied his father's family in the removal to Butler County, then to Union County, Indiana, and finally to Marshall County. In 1838, two years after he arrived in this county, he married Mary A. Logan, who died in 1841. The first Dr. Logan was connected. Two children survived, Oliver H. and Mary A. In 1842, David married Sophia Dickson, who died in 1879. They had seven children. "David R. Voreis first lived about four and a half miles south of Plymouth," said A. C. Thompson in 1890, but in a few years took up his residence in Union Township, about one mile north of Maxinkuckee village, where he still lives. He has witnessed and helped to make as great changes around him as any man now living in the county." He, too, is gone now. And the old Voreis homestead, located not far from the sunrise side of the present Culver Bird Sanctuary, is gone now, also. It was destroyed by fire some time ago.
LEWIS. Among the pioneers was William F. Lewis, who was officially a resident of Union Township prior to 1840. In speaking of the ancestry of the first comers, it has been said that, Welsh blood was added to the mixture when John Lewis joined the group of pioneers on their way to the Maxinkuckee region.
HENDERSON. Nathan and Eleanor (Jacobs) Henderson were natives respectively of Maryland and Kentucky. They were married in the southern part of Indiana, where they lived until 1835, when they came to Marshall County and located above Wolf Creek, Green Township, moving later to Union Township, where they lived until the time of their deaths. Abraham Voreis, son of John H., married their daughter Rebecca.
LOUDEN. It has been stated by a chronicler of the early history of Marshall County that the second white child born in this county was James Oscar Louden. The first was Cyrus Taber, born in 1834, a son of Mr. and Mrs. Samuel D. Taber, who lived two miles south of Plymouth on the Michigan Road, and who kept a tavern which he called Pashpo, in honor of an Indian chief by that name who lived in the vicinity. James
O. Louden was born April 28, 1837, died at his home near Rutland, September 21, 1904, after a long illness, and was buried in Poplar Grove Cemetery. He was a member of the Methodist Church since he was eighteen years old, and was a faithful worker until disease prevented. He was married to Cordelia A. Willard, July 29, 1858, to which union eight children were born, five sons and three daughters. James O. Louden was a half-brother of Marvin T. Louden, who today (in 1934) resides on the east side of Lake, Maxinkuckee. Marvin had three half-brothers. The father, John Louden, moved to Indiana from New York in 1833, coming first to LaPorte County, then to Marshall County. He settled near Wolf Creek. The son, Marvin, was born April 26, 1858, in Green Township on the homestead farm, located one mile west and one mile south of Wolf Creek village, pretty close to Union Township. In fact, the farm adjoined the Union Township line on the west. About fifty years ago, or in the early '80s, he came to Union Township. His father came before that. Members of the family still living in the township are Marvin T. Louden; his sons, T. G. Louden, of Culver; Ivan Louden, of Maxinkuckee; and daughter, Mrs. Florence Woodruff, of Grand Rapids, Michigan, a summer resident with her father.
|XXVII . SOON-AFTER-THE-FIRST FAMILIES|
“Dwelt in the love of God and of man. Alike were they free from
Fear, that reigns with the tyrant, and envy, the vice of republics.
Neither locks had they to their doors, nor bars to their windows;
But their dwellings were open as day and the hearts of the owners;
There the richest was poor, and the poorest lived in abundance.”
…Henry W. Longfellow
IN UNION TOWNSHIP IN THE VERY EARLY DAYS there was peace, as in the idealistic Grand Pre’. There was not such a great deal of plenty, but there was enough for every one. No one went hungry. Hearts and dwellings were open, and each settler was as brother and sister to the other.
Having heard about the "first families," those who came at the beginning, let us consider briefly the soon-after-the-first families, who arrived during the two decades following the first permanent settlement.
"During the early days of Marshall county, when its forests stood uncut and its broad prairies had been unturned by the plow," says McDonald, "there journeyed hither a young lad of twenty years, David Garn, to establish a home in the wilds and to cope with the many privations and hardships incident to a life on the frontier. He journeyed in a wagon from his native commonwealth of Ohio, and arriving in Union township, Marshall county, he purchased eighty acres of land, to which he later added another eighty-acre tract, and he cleared and improved his land. At the commencement of his life here he erected a little cabin home, which continued as his residence during many subsequent years, and in the meantime he added to his land until he was the owner of nearly a section. After a time Mr. Garn returned to his Ohio home for his bride, and the young couple took their wedding journey in a wagon to the husband's new home in Marshall county. They passed through the many trials and hardships which were the inevitable concomitants of a pioneer's life, and the names and deeds of these brave frontiersmen should be held in reverence by those who enjoy the fruits of their toil. During the later years of his life Mr. Garn moved to West township and purchased a farm of 160 acres," which became the homestead of his son Samuel, "and there he passed to his final reward at the age of sixty-six years." He was a member of the Evangelical Church, There were five children, four sons and one daughter, all born in Union Township. The Garn settlement was in the far northwest corner of the township.
Francis Edwards, the pioneer, was a native of Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, and at an early day settled on a farm in Miami County, Indiana. Not long after the first permanent settlements were made in Marshall County, he removed to this section, selecting for his new home a wooded tract of 73 acres in Union Township, upon which he built a log house and started improvements which his son, Stephen, completed. Francis Edwards married Elizabeth Hoover, a native of Maryland, but who was reared near Marion, Indiana. There were eleven children. Stephen, the tenth child, came to Union Township as a pioneer, like his father; received his education in the district log schoolhouse nearest to his home, and remained always on the shores of Lake Maxinkuckee, never leaving the old homestead to reside. His farm in time embraced 104 acres. The father, Francis, passed the balance of his life there, and died at the age of seventy-three. Stephen was born in Miami County in 1844, and in 1871 married Nancy Savage, a native of Ohio, whose parents also pioneered in Marshall County.
The Osborn family, originating in the East, drifted westward from New York, through Pennsylvania and Ohio, to Starke County, Indiana. Pioneering close to the Union Township line, it is natural that members of the family should drift again, this time over the line eastward, but only a little bit, for they remained in and around Culver. The earliest American ancestors of the family were New Yorkers, the paternal grandfather, James Osborn, having been born in the Empire State July 21, 1774. The family removed to Luzerne County, Pennsylvania, and afterward to Delaware County, Ohio, where James died January 12, 1844. George M. Osborn was one of the sons born in Luzerne County (July 30, 1802), who came to Delaware County with his parents and there spent the remainder of his life. He married Anna Hull, a native of New Jersey, born in 1806, who in her childhood also removed to Delaware County with her parents. Their marriage occurred in 1822. The children were Japhet, Lucy, William, Eliza, John W. and Samuel. The elder Mr. Osborn, with his family, removed from Delaware County to Starke in 1844. Both parents died there during the year of their location. The eldest of the six children thus bereft was twenty-one and the youngest, Samuel, was but four.
Samuel Osborn was born in Delaware County, January 18, 1840. For about five years after the death of his parents, he remained with his brothers and sisters, but at the age of nine he went to live with his brother William, who had just married. “At this time," says McDonald, "Starke county was a wild and sparsely settled region, and when the family first located within its limits there were but five other white families in that section of the state. Samuel attended the first school organized in the county, held in a crude log house, and within its walls imbibed what education he could. But he was a sturdy, ambitious boy, and early saw the necessity of individual exertion as a duty he owed to other members of the orphaned family. He recalls the proud period of his life when, as a young boy, he earned his first money in digging snake root and selling it to the good people of Plymouth. With the proceeds of his sale he purchased two calves. In the following summer he went to Illinois and worked upon a farm for eight dollars per month, which enabled him to maintain both himself and his infant herd. In fact, before long he had saved twenty dollars in gold and had become the owner of four more calves. From this small beginning his perseverance and thrift enabled him within a few years to start himself well on the road as a prosperous cattleman. In 1863 he sold the sixty head of cattle of which he was the owner and paid $1,700 in cash for an eighty-acre tract of farm land in North Bend township. Upon it he erected a log cabin as his bachelor home and there he lived alone until his marriage with Henrietta Rice in 1867." She died in 1883, the mother of four children, three daughters and one son, the eldest, who at the age of four was scalded to death. Samuel Osborn lived until 1871 in a log cabin on his Starke County farm, then erected a farm house and added eighty acres to the place. In time he accumulated 315 acres, and in 1900 moved to Culver to live a retired life. He passed away October 29, 1932, aged close to ninety-three years.
William Osborn was born in Delaware County, Ohio, and from there moved to Starke County, Indiana, in 1840, and engaged in farming there until his removal to Culver. His wife, Louisa J. Owens, died some time prior to 1908. His own death occurred December 8, 1921. He was somewhat over ninety-four years of age. "Uncle Billy," as he was familiarly known, was an authority on the weather, and his opinions were often quoted, especially during the first two decades of the Twentieth Century. He kept a careful record of weather conditions and changes, including the number of snows in a season and the total inches of snowfall. He was a keen observer.
John Osborn, a son of William, was born in 1859 in North Bend Township, Starke County, live miles northwest of Culver, and left his boyhood home in 1879 for Union Township, where he became active in various pursuits and businesses and contributed largely to the upbuilding of the community. He is still, in 1934, a resident of Culver and is as active as ever in his various enterprises.
It is interesting to note that the first Osborn family reunion was held on the shores of Lake Maxinkuckee, September 11, 1904, at which there were present, among other relatives from far and near, William, John and Samuel, the oldest brothers. On the occasion of the second annual family reunion, celebrated September 3, 1905, at Vandalia Park in Culver, the early history of the family was recounted by William and Samuel. It was related that George M. Osborn, the founder of this branch of the family, moved from Pennsylvania to Ohio, and from Ohio to Eagle Lake, Starke County, when only five other families lived in the county. After living five years there, he and his wife both died, leaving a family of six orphan children to care for themselves alone in the wilderness. Four of these children, William, Samuel, John and Eliza were living within about twelve miles of the old home place, at the time of this second reunion. One hundred and six descendants, it was then noted, had sprung from the George M. Osborn family. Among those who gave remarks at the reunion were John, of Culver, and Wesley, of Ober. Miss Maude Osborn was also present.
Alfred and Amy Bucklew were pioneers of Union Township and Marshall County. The Bucklew lands were northeast of Lake Maxinkuckee. The pioneer Bucklew Cemetery, located at the angle of the road between the Shaw and Rutland neighborhoods, was on the western boundary of the Bucklew lands, which prior to 1880 were in the names of A. and G. Bucklew. Sarah E., a daughter of Alfred and Amy Bucklew, married Nathaniel Gandy in 1868. She was born in Lake County, Indiana, and removed to Marshall County when but a young girl. One daughter, Marian Augusta, who became Mrs. Irvin Swigart, died in Culver, September 10, 1934.
Reuben Kaley was born and reared in Pennsylvania, married in Ohio, and was a pioneer settler of Union Township. His wife, Mary Crouse, was born in Germany, came to America in he early girlhood, and grew to womanhood in Ohio. She was the mother of five children. After her death, Mr. Kaley married again and to this union seven children were born. Reuben Kaley settled in Union Township in 1845, and as was customary with the pioneers, selected timber land as the site of his homestead. The first four weeks after his arrival were spent in a rail pen, but as soon as possible he erected a log house and commenced the clearing of the place. At that time he was simply one of a few white settlers, surrounded by woods and lurking creatures of the wild. He spent the remainder of his life in the southwestern part of the township where he had settled. The Reuben Kaley lands were in the Zion neighborhood. He also had forty acres northeast of Lake Maxinkuckee, near the Bucklew Cemetery. A daughter, Sarah A. born near Bellevue, Ohio, married Jacob L. Myers in 1866.
From France came, the pioneer Carbiener family. George Carbiener was born in Alsace, in the land of the fleur-de-lis, and after spending the first twenty-five years of his life in his native country, came to America, locating in Wayne County, Ohio. From there he came to St. Joseph County, Indiana, in April, 1854, and resumed his agricultural labors in Union Township, Marshall County, his death in this section occurring at the age of seventy-four. His wife, also a native of France, lived to bf forty-one. There were nine children, three sons and six daughters. Jacob, one of the sons, was born in Ohio in 1852, and was two years of age when the family went from Ohio to St. Joseph County. He grew to manhood on the old home farm in Union Township. During his boyhood days he assisted his father in clearing and improving his land, and at the age of twenty-one moved to a farm in German Township, this county. Later he became a manufacturer and business man in Bremen.
John Hoham was born over the ocean, in Alsace. He first saw the light of day in the city of Strasburg, June 17, 1820. "In September, 1831, he left home and began working on a farm," says A. C. Thompson, "and in 1840 came to the United States, landing in New York city after a voyage of fifty-six days. From that city he went to Lyons, N. Y., near which place he found employment on a farm at $100 a year, and after remaining there one year he found similar employment near the city of Buffalo, where, in addition to farm work, he was also engaged in the lumber business. He then came west, and in September, 1844, located in Marshall county, Indiana, purchasing a farm of eighty acres in the old Indian reserve at Lake Maxinkuckee, in Union township. He was the first one to purchase real estate in that part of the country, and for one year lived entirely alone in the little log cabin which he had erected upon his land. In 1845 he was married to Mary Moller, a native of Germany, but living at that time in Fulton county, this state, where the marriage took place. He continued to reside on his farm for eight years, in which time he added to his original purchase becoming the possessor of 160 acres of land. He disposed of his farm in 1852 and purchased a farm of 200 acres in West township, 125 acres of which he cleared and put in cultivation and resided upon the same for a period of about five years. During the year 1854-55, he was joined by his friends and relatives from the old country, his father and mother having died in Germany previous to that time. In October, 1857, he purchased three acres of land one mile south-west of Plymouth, to which he at once removed and upon which he erected the first brewery in Marshall county." For many years he was one of the leading citizens of Plymouth, where he engaged in several different business enterprises. He became the owner of considerable property in that city, and bought and sold some valuable farms in the outlying country. His first wife died in 1875, leaving nine children. He remarried in 1876.
Among the first of the settlers in the Lake Maxinkuckee region was Denisa Hill-Finney. Born Denisa Hawkins, she was married in Covington, Kentucky, to Jordon Hill, her first husband, who was a native of that State. At an early date, Jordon Hill had removed from Lexington to Covington. There he engaged in the manufacture of ropes and in the ferry business, being the first man to run a ferry boat between Covington and Cincinnati. His death occurred at Covington in 1837, and his widow soon afterward removed her family to Indiana, locating in Bartholomew County. While residing in that county, she was married a second time, to James Finney. Tracing the further migration of the family, we find that the next removal was to Peru, Indiana, in 1841; then in 1843 to Marshall County, where the family settled near Maxinkuckee lake. In about 1864-5 Mrs. Finney removed to a farm about two miles west of Argos, where she lived for many years, attaining an age not far beneath the century mark. She was born very early in the Nineteenth Century, in 1805 or thereabouts. To her marriage with Jordon Hill four children were born. One of them was George, who resided near Argos. Another son, William W., who became an honored citizen and business man of Plymouth, was born at Covington, Kentucky, February 6, 1830, and while at a very tender age he was, by the death of his father, thrown upon his own resources. With but little more than the rudiments of an education, and while but a mere boy, he was apprenticed to a baker at Peru. Acquiring a good knowledge of the trade, he went to Plymouth, worked a year in the Packard bakery, then established a small affair of his own. From that point, his rise was steady and sure. Six children were born to the mother's second marriage.
Alwin and Mila Flagg, with their family, settled in this county in 1848, locating in Union Township, in the woods near Lake Maxinkuckee, where both parents afterward died. In the early forties they had settled in Miami County, removing from their native State of New York. Alwin Flagg was born in New York, August 11, 1799, and died in Marshall County in May of 1853. His wife, Mila Flagg, possessed the same family name as his own. She was born in New York, May 13, 1805, and died in this county in 1855. Alwin and Mila Flagg were married in New York in October of 1838. There were four children, one of whom died early. In their deaths, the parents left three orphan children, William H. J. Lauraette and Alphonso. William, the oldest, was born in Miami County, January 28, 1842. The parents gone, it was he who assumed the duty of looking after and rearing the other children, and held the old homestead till 1871, when it was sold at an advantage. In '65 he enlisted in the Union army. Soon came the close of the war, and he was discharged in September of that year, returning to this county. He was married in 1871, his wife, Julia A. Flagg, being a native of Ohio, born in 1849. There were three children. Mr. Flagg followed the carpentry trade up to 1884, when he built an eating house at the Nickel Plate depot in Argos. Later, he became proprietor of the Argos House, which he ran two years, and finally he engaged in the lumber business in that community.
Among the pioneers of this comity was Nathaniel Gandy, the elder. His son, Nathaniel the second, may be counted as a pioneer also .... of the present community of Culver, which was known as Uniontown when he, as a mere infant, arrived in this neighborhood. The parents, Nathaniel and Jane (Coney) Gandy, were both natives of Indiana and pioneers of Jay County. The father moved into Marshall County in 1846, farming for about ten years thereafter, in Polk Township, then transferred his. home and farm interests to Union Township. He died at Culver in his eighty-fifth year. He was a member of the United Brethren Church. His wife, the mother of Nathaniel the second, was a native of Cumberland County, New Jersey, and lived to be over eighty-four. Nathaniel and Jane Gandy were the parents of thirteen children. The sixth child of the family was Nathaniel the second, who was born in Jay County, Indiana, January 2, 1846, and who was one year old when the family located in what is now Culver. He grew up in this community, farmed before the Civil War, and then enlisted in the 33rd Indiana Regiment of Volunteer Infantry, Company F. He served to the close of the war, was honorably discharged and returned to his farming. From 1887 to 1897 he conducted a livery business in Culver, then retired. His death occurred in Culver, December 8, 1914, at the age of sixty-eight. From the time of the settlement of the family close to the waters of Maxinkuckee to that of the death of the son, the name of Gandy was prominently linked with affairs of this section. Prior to 1880, Nathaniel Gandy, Sr., had over 86 acres of land northeast of the lake, near the Bucklew Cemetery. Marion Augusta, a granddaughter of the pioneer, passed away, September 10, 1934, at the age of fifty-seven. She was the wife of Irvin Swigart, and had lived most of her life in the Gandy Corner residence at Main Street and Lake Shore Drive in Culver.
There comes now upon the scene a pioneer doctor by the name of Gustavus Adolphus Durr, and his wife, Eliza (Lopp) Durr. The doctor was a native of Baden Baden, Germany, but his wife was born in America, in Indiana. He came to this country, located at Monterey, then moved to Lake Maxinkuckee in 1856, and remained to practice in that territory until his death at the age of sixty-one. His wife died at the age of forty-four. Two children grew to maturity. A son, Dr. Charles C. Durr, was born in Pulaski County, in what is now Monterey, in 1852, and was four years old when his parents located at Lake Maxinkuckee. After graduating from dental college in 1873, the young Dr. Durr began at once to practice in Plymouth, serving at the same time as dentist for the Culver Military Academy. The "old Dr. Durr," as he was called, in order not to confuse him with his dentist son, was known and loved far and near; he was the family physician for early and scattered "flocks." He had some land at Delong, and it was there that the Stahl family early located, on the "Dr. Durr place," as it was known to them. The family of Jacob F. and Christiana Stahl moved there about 1858. There were around forty acres of uncleared land, wilderness more than anything else, which Mr. Stahl cleared by arrangement with Dr. Durr. In the '76s, the doctor owned a tract of land, consisting of somewhat over 76 acres and located south and southwest of Marmont. This land included the present John Hawk farm and extended from the corner back of the Evangelical Church to the Doll Road, west of town. It was bounded on the north by the present. Mill Road, on the east by the section line road, on the south by the M. G. Gould land, and on the west by the Doll Road. At that time there were only two structures on the land, one at the corner of the section line road and Mill Road, the other some distance down the section line road, (which evidently followed the present alley between Main and Ohio streets.). This property did not comprise the doctor's residence, which was located nearer the center of the town of Marmont.
"The Wickizer family,” says McDonald, "traces its American founders to Pennsylvania, and is enriched and strengthened by the blood of both Scotch and German nationalities. On the maternal side the strain comes from the Old Dominion. The course of migration on the, part of the paternal ancestors was by way of Ohio to Indiana, and of the members of tile maternal family it was direct to the Hoosier state." The family of James M. Wickizer represented the pioneer element of Marshall County, different members migrating from Fairfield County, Ohio, in the early 'fifties and locating near Poplar Grove, Union Township. Tracing back, we find that James M. Wickizer’s parents were John B. and Annie (Brooke) Wickizer. John B. was born in Pennsylvania in 1803, and died in Fairfield County. Ohio, in 1843. He was a son of Andrew and Mary (Bennett) Wickizer. Andrew Wickizer, a native of Pennsylvania was One of Your sons, namely: Abraham, Conrad, Jacob and Andrew, born of German born parentage, the parents having emigrated to Pennsylvania from Germany in an early day. The children of Andrew and Mary Wickizer were Asa, William, John B., Conrad, Rebecca, Lydia, Wealthy, Hannah, Rhoda, Mary, Rosanna, Sallie and Elizabeth In a very early day, Andrew Wickizer and family emigrated to Ohio and swilled in Fairfield County, where he died in 1844, aged seventy-five years. He was a farmer by occupation, and a Must or Mason. The children of John B. and Annie (Brooke) Wickizer were Hannah, George W., Thomas J., James M., Andrew J. John Q. Jacob S., Sarah J., and Pulaski. The father died in 1843, and soon afterward the widowed mother and her children determined to move to Indiana. They came one fall and settled in Marshall County, Where the mother died in 1879, aged seventy-six years. James M., born in Fairfield County, Ohio, February 23, 1831, was not yet of age when he came to this section with his mother. His youth was spent on a farm, and in his native county in Ohio he had gained a fair education in the Greenfield Academy. He came to Marshall County in the fall of 1850, and in the winter of that year began teaching in the district schools of the county, and afterward taught some nine or ten terms. In March, 1860, he entered the general merchandising business; he opened and operated the first store in Argos. This he conducted until 1882, when he retired from business on account of poor health and removed to a farm. His wife was Rebecca Williams, daughter of Merrill Williams, an early settler of Marshall County and at one time one of its wealthiest land owners and business men. Frank M., a son Of James and Rebecca Wickizer, became editor and Proprietor of the "Argos Reflector." The other children were George, Albert, Corben W., Richard and Samantha. The mother died, and James Wickizer married his second wife, Alice Haines, who died in 1853. There was one son, Elmer Otis. The Wickizer lands in Union Township were originally and still are in the eastern section, near the township line.
George Adam Morlock, the pioneer, a native of Germany, was born in the year 1820, was reared in that country, and at the age of twenty-five, attracted by the favorable reports he had heard concerning America and its opportunities, sailed for the New World, locating in New York State. For two years after he landed, he lived on Long Island. Later he moved to Rochester, in the same State, near which city he followed farming for three and one-half years, thence moved to Ohio, where he was married to Elizabeth Zechiel. Thus did he gradually make his way westward to Marshall County, arriving in 1853. He purchased a tract of about forty acres, mostly in heavy timber, and cleared the greater part of it. At length his land holdings embraced 600 acres, of which he cleared about 300. After coming to these parts, he continued to live on the old homestead property until his death in 1892, at the age of seventy-two. Since 1875, the family resided in West Township. Elizabeth (Zechiel) Morlock was born in Ohio and spent her girlhood there on a farm. There were seven children in the Morlock family, five sons and two daughters. The father was a member of the German Baptist Church. He was an honest and successful man. The secret of his success in life to use his own language was "not in trading, not in swindling, but in the honest sweat of my brow." John A., the eldest son, was born in this county in 1854. He was married, October, 1879, to Dora Crampton, whose father, Smith Crampton, was one of the pioneers of the county. E. R. Morlock, another son, was born in Union Township in 1858. In 1853 he married Fannie Crawford and the same year began farming for himself in West Township. George P. Morlock, a third son, was born in Union Township in 1861, and went to West Township, where he engaged in farming and stock raising. He accompanied his parents on their removal from Union Township to West around 1902.
Oliver B. and Catharine (Platz) Porter moved from their native State of Ohio to St. Joseph County, Indiana, thence to Marshall County, about the year 1852, settling in Union Township. They had a family of eight children. Oliver B. Porter was born October 7, 1829, and died December 1, 1870. His wife, Catharine Platz, was born May 2, 1830, and died December 28, 1907. Both were buried in the Culver cemetery. Of the children, William H., Ellen, O. R. and Asa L. were the only ones living in 1890. O. R. Porter, one of the boys, attended the common schools and after taking a Course in the Northern Indiana School at Valparaiso, engaged in teaching for several years. Finally he gave up this profession, and in 1889 established a general merchandise business at Marmont, now Culver. In 1885 he married Maud Oyler daughter of Henry and Matilde (Barnett) Oyler. In 1890, Mr. Porter was elected Union Township trustee. The name of Tivis Porter appears in the list of early settlers officially residing in Union Township prior to 1840.
Frederick Garver, a native of Germany, came to the United States when a young man, and married in Washington County, Pennsylvania, Sarah S. Speere, daughter of Rev. Henry Speere. There were twelve children of Frederick and Sarah Garver. The father emigrated west some time in the thirties and settled in Cass County, Michigan, thence in 1834 moved to Elkhart County, Indiana, where he entered a tract of government land. He was one of the pioneers of that region. He died in Elkhart County in 1852, and one year later his wife passed away. One of the children, John S., born in Washington County, Pennsylvania, April 5, 1813, was, when but a child, taken by his parents to Indiana. The years of his youth were spent chiefly in Wayne and Crawford counties, Ohio, and in Cass County, Michigan. He subsequently lived in Elkhart County, Indiana, remaining there until 1854, when he came to Marshall County and settled in Union Township. Here he cleared and developed a fine farm from the woods. Being early obliged to assist his father on the farm, his educational advantages were of necessity quite limited, but long experience in life's relations gave him a sound practical knowledge such as books often fail to impart. He was married in 1837 in Elkhart County to Mary Stutzman, a native of Ohio. There were thirteen children born to this union. John and Mary Garver were members of the German Baptist Church. It is interesting to note that while still a young man, John Garver participated in the Black Hawk War, enlisting while a resident of Michigan. The Garver lands were on the Burr Oak Flats, a short distance south of the present Burr Oak community.