Thursday, December 11, 2008

Historical Families Project

Starting in 2003, the Society began honoring families who played a significant role in the community. Cooperation and support from the Village of Holland and Springfield Township have played a significant role in this project.

------------- 2009 - Willard and Elizabeth Cobb (Kitchell) Barnes Family

The Barnes family came to the Maumee valley around 1823 along with their grandparents, Jacob and Esther (Harris) Wiltse, and their uncle, Cornelius Wiltse. The father, Josiah or Joshua Barnes had died and his widow, Ann (Wiltse) Barnes, came to the frontier with her 8 daughters and Willard. Prior to migrating they had lived in Cayuga County, New York where Willard was born on June 24, 1808. They settled near Waterville at first, but when Willard married Elizabeth on November 3, 181, they moved to what was then Waynesville Township in Wood County. After the Toledo War, this area became Springfield Township in Lucas County, and later became a part of Monclova Township. Willard is listed in the “History of Toledo and Lucas County” as being a resident of Springfield Township before 1834.
Elizabeth Cobb Kitchell was born on January 12, 1812, in Deerfield Township, Warren County, Ohio. She was the daughter of James Leonard and Charity (Cobb) Kitchell who came to the Maumee Valley from southwestern Ohio in 1826, settling on Swan Creek in what is now Fulton County.
They moved to Wing Township (later Swanton Township) in 1834 where Willard was actively involved in the organization of that township. He built the house where the first school was held in 1835. On April 4, 1836, the first election was held for the township and he was elected one of the trustees.
Sometime between 1837 and 1839, they moved to Boone County, Illinois, and remained there until 1853, when they sold their farm near Belvedere. They returned to Spencer Township that year where they lived for the remainder of their lives. Their farm was located on Angola Road
Willard and Elizabeth had 13 children: Joshua, Harriet B., James K., George Willard, Caroline Elizabeth, Mary J., Asahel Asa, Emeline Miranda, Charles Thare, William H., Oscar W., and Sarah Jeannette. The family wrote a short history of the family in 1965 and at that time they were able to count 57 grandchildren that were born to their 13 children. Only nine of those grandchildren were living at that time: Jane Campbell of Joshua’s family; Mae Pollock of James K.’s family; Ida Stull, Harry Barnes and Albert Barnes of George Willard’s family; Opal Diamond and Pearl Belles of Charles T.’s family; and Mary Tredway and Wendell Barnes of Asahel Asa’s family. Five sons served in the Civil War – Joshua, James, John, George and Asahel, and many of their descendants served their country in subsequent conflicts. In the area around Springfield, Spencer and Monclova Townships numerous members of the family live today.
Willard died on January 11, 1879 and Elizabeth on November 11, 1881. Both are buried in Spencer Sharples Cemetery in Harding Township.


------------------------------------- 2009 - Harvey and Betsey Kellogg

It would seem that these two individuals were a perfect match that was almost unequaled in their time. They both were involved with their family and the communities in which they lived and shared experiences in both. As was the custom in those days, Harvey was outwardly active in politics, the church, fraternal and other organizations, while Betsey although staying in the background exerted her influence by teaching, caring for the children of other families as well as her own, and becoming involved with community organizations exemplified by her work with the veterans of Battery H, 1st Ohio Volunteer Artillery (Civil) War). Many of her activities would have gone unnoticed if she had not written a memoir in the waning years of her life. That small document details the life of not only herself and her husband but a representative woman and family of the 19th century.
Born on November 13, 1813, in Canaan, Litchfield County, Connecticut, in what was called Farren House (a house built by one of her ancestors who was a Congregational minister); she was the daughter of Whiting Gaylord and Clarissa (Belden) Kellogg. Her mother died when she was not yet 4 years old, leaving herself and two other children to be raised by her father. She became an introverted individual possibly because of the lack of playmates and wandered the hills and woods around her home causing the neighbors to worry about her safety.
When she became a teenager, her thoughts turned to religion and at a church meeting saw her future husband, Harvey Kellogg, who was her 3rd cousin. They became members of the Congregational Church together with about 30 others in about 1827. Their beliefs remained the same throughout their life.
She attended an academy near a relative’s home and in 1831 began teaching at a country school six miles from home. That job did not last long and she was then hired in a factory painting clock faces for 60 cents a week which later increased to 75 cents then 1 dollar. The factory was about 30 miles from her home. She and 12 other girls boarded with her cousin and shared many unique experiences in their work and free time (they had half a day for washing, cleaning and sewing – Sundays were for worship all day).
Harvey and she must have seen each other through the years and when he went to New York to visit cousins and apply for a teaching job, she went with him probably along with others. They corresponded more after that journey and after agreed to be married on October 20, 1835. Both of them objected to having wine at the wedding reception and agreed that they would serve cold water instead. Betsey’s brother and a cousin served 5 pails of water to the guests.
Harvey’s older brother, Charles, offered them a home on the family farm, but it was small and Harvey thought it would be better to move west. On April 24, 1837, they began their journey, first by wagon to Albany, New York, where they embarked on a boat on the Erie Canal. She states that on arriving in Buffalo (the end of the canal) they then took another wagon to Erie, Pennsylvania, and then boarded a boat to travel across Lake Erie, arriving in Maumee at 11:00 in the evening. She must have felt like going back home when they landed since she describes the scene - “The Captain said all passengers must leave the boat we were set off in the dark on the wharf where there was no building. I think Maumee mud was about shoe mouth deep and very sticky…. while I tried to clean off the mud, but that was something I couldn’t do. It was like the old woman’s grease, it wouldn’t rub off when it got dry.”
They set up housekeeping in a cabin that was rented by the Coe family on land that Betsey and Harvey had bought. They boarded with them for a year until the rent agreement expired and she talks about the situations that occurred with the two families in one small cabin. She began teaching local children in her home and kept books for a library that had been bought for their church. During the following years they began taking in children whose families needed help and as more found out about the care they gave they were asked to take care of more. In her writings she tells about nine of them.
In 1855, Harvey’s parents needed help in Connecticut, so they rented out their farm and made the journey in a horse and sleigh. They had planned on going by wagon but it snowed so much that it was easier on the horses, so they started out with the idea that a wagon could be bought or exchanged for the sleigh if the snow ran out. They made it to the home farm in three weeks. She tells of not wanting to stay in taverns because of the drink being consumed, so they stopped at people’s houses and asked if they could spend the night in the barn. At times, they slept under the stars.
After returning to their home in what had now become Carey and later Adams Township, they lived a long life with their children beside them, and their activities continuing.
Harvey was born on January 19, 1813 in Canaan, Litchfield County, Connecticut, the son of Joseph and Martha (Beebe) Kellogg. He taught school for many years in what is now Adams Township, served as Justice of the Peace for over 15 years, and was Postmaster at Hickory in Adams Township for 7 years. In 1877, he was elected to the Ohio General Assembly on the National Party Ticket. He served on the Committee for Temperance and Unfinished Business. After 1883, he served many years as President of the Lucas County Sunday School Union, and was one of the Board of Trustees of the Women’s Christian Association of Adams Township.
Betsey and Harvey had 3 sons and 2 daughters – Joseph, James, Isaac, Emma and Addy.
Harvey died in 1896 at the age of 83 and Betsey in 1904 at the age of 91. She wrote her memoirs in 1898 when she was 85. They are both buried in Springfield Township Cemetery with other members of their family.
After her death, she and Harvey were honored by Battery H, 1st Ohio Volunteer Infantry for their participation in the welcoming home of those men after the Civil War. Because of their interest they were invited as members of the battery when reunions were started in 1874. One of their members, William Parmlee wrote this as the end of his tribute that was read at their meeting in Holland in 1905.

“Her kindly face and gentle tones will be missed, but they are firmly fixed in our memories. Such a life needs no Eulogy. If it did I am not equal to the making of it. Our memory of her is a gentle Saint who bore the care and burdens of life quietly but bravely. Her Sympathy was always a really genuine and helpful kind. The passing of Mother Kellogg comes very close to us all, yet we would not grieve but feel she has entered her Rest Above so loyally earned below.”


----------------------------------------------2008 - The Jacob Wiltse family.

Historical Society Notes
Jacob’s son, John, arrived in the Springfield Township area in 1831 along with his wife Joannah (Barnes) and 9 children. Many of the family’s friends and relatives also came along from the Cayuga County, New York area; they included the Devine, Frost and, Barnes families who all had a part in the settlement of the area. They settled 80 acres on June 1, 1832 in what was then Wood County and close to the area where the Springfield Township Cemetery now stands. John became the first treasurer of the township in 1836 and served in that office until 1839. He also served as a school director, supervisor of highways and fence viewer. He and Thomas Wood influenced the building of the first church (Methodist) for the township that was built directly west of the cemetery. He died on December 26, 1857, and his wife, Joannah, died on September 16, 1840. They are buried next to John’s father and mother, Jacob and Esther, in Springfield cemetery on a small knoll facing where the church had been built. One of the sons of John and Joannah, Hiram Wiltse, was also active in the community, serving as a Township Trustee and Clerk in the 1850s and as a Justice of the Peace for 30 years. He was farmer, millwright and carpenter, building coffins when they were needed and made the benches for the church that his father helped build. During the Civil War he built bridges for the Union Army. For a short period of time he migrated to Saginaw County, Michigan, to work in the lumber business. He stayed for only a short period of time because he became homesick for the beautiful Maumee Valley. After he returned he lost all of his property in Perrysburg when he posted bond for a young man who worked in a bank. The trust he put in the young man was betrayed when he left the area with a large portion of the bank’s money. Hiram’s farm was a stopping place for Indians on their way to Detroit. He provided shelter for them, especially in the winter, and provided straw to insulate their moccasins from the ice and snow. Hiram was a big man, over six feet tall, and quite an athlete, usually taking part in barn raisings and the games of strength that followed. He also taught singing and his voice could be heard in the congregation on Sundays. Hiram married Jane Burdo, the daughter of Louis and Susannah (Guyor) Bourdeau, and the sister of John Burdo, who was also a pioneer of Springfield Township. They lived the later years of their lives in Maumee and died in 1896 (Hiram) and 1894 (Jane).

Jacob’s Story for Springfield Township Historical Society, April 30, 2008 Mary Lou (Bernecker) Mayer, West Hartford, Connecticut 3rd Great Granddaughter of Jacob Wiltse

Jacob Wiltse did not bloom where he was planted in 1757 in Beekman Patent, Dutchess County, New York. He, like the Wiltse men before him, was born under a wandering star like Lee Marvin in Paint Your Wagon. Jacob, the fifth of 14 children of Cornelius Wiltse, Jr. and Elizabeth Cornell, roamed all the way to Springfield Township, Lucas Co., Ohio – about 600 miles away. He was 69 when he died here in 1827. He is buried in Springfield Cemetery with his wife Esther, his first son John, and John’s wife, Joanna Barnes. Each generation of Wiltses in Jacob’s line headed for yet another wilderness in New York with their large families, so that their sons would have more land. Beginning in the early 17th Century, Hendrick Martense, a Norwegian mercenary soldier with the Dutch West India Company, became the first Wiltse in America. He married Margaret Meyers in New Amsterdam, repaired to Wiltwick (now Kingston, NY), was captured during the Esopus Massacre in 1662, but escaped. He moved the growing family to a farm at Hell Gate in what is now Astoria, Queens. Their son Marten Hendrickse married Maria Van Wyck and went East on Long Island to a farm and apple orchard in Flushing where he developed the Newtown apple. Their son Cornelius, Sr., Jacob’s grandfather, died about two years before Jacob was born. Cornelius didn’t stay put either. When he was 40, he, his wife Ruth Smith, and their 11 children left Success Pond in Newtown, New York to pioneer in Dutchess County. He bought 74 acres from the widow Madam Catharyna Brett who had inherited 28,000 acres that stretched from what is today Poughkeepsie east to Connecticut and south to Putnam County. Cornelius was also one of her partners the Frankfort Store, a cooperative at Fishkill Landing. They sold their local farm products in Manhattan about 70 miles down the Hudson River. Cornelius became a successful farmer, cooper, carpenter and merchant. His store in Hopewell sold goods imported from Europe. Jacob’s father Cornelius, Jr. was one of seven sons, so he inherited just 40 acres and a swamp in Beekman Patent. Because he and his sons would need more land, Cornelius also moved further north when Jacob was 2 years old, perhaps to Spencertown and/or Duanesburg. Here decades later Jacob volunteered to fight in the American Revolution. He and his father enlisted with four of his brothers of military age - Cornelius, Henry, Jeames, and Thomas. They served as privates in the 8th Albany County Regiment, 1st Claverack Battalion, commanded by Col. Robert Van Rensselaer, Lieut. Col. Henry Van Rensselaer, and Capt. Isaac P. Vosburgh. At some point Jacob married Esther Harris (or Sterling). Who was she? Like the majority of pioneer women, Esther’s resume is “wife and mother;” otherwise she is hidden for eighty years behind what genealogists term a “brick wall.” Before she died, she saw her ten children – seven daughters and three sons – produce at least 21 grandchildren. This is what French historian Alexis de Toqueville said about Esther’s peers in Democracy in America in 1840: “Most women had the everyday jobs of cooking, cleaning, ironing, sewing, laundry, care of the poultry, dairy work, butter churning, spinning, child care and more in an unending cycle of domestic work. She [the pioneer wife] has exhausted herself giving them life and does not regret what they have cost her. Esther left no diary to contradict Monsieur de Tocqueville. But after the war we can trace her wilderness whereabouts through documents about Jacob in census records, local histories, and a Cayuga county deed. Although the names of Upstate New York counties and towns changed frequently, we know they lived primarily in Stillwater and Sterling. By the 1790 Federal Census they were listed in Stillwater in Saratoga County with six daughters - Betsy, Anna, Sarah, Mary, Julia, and Esther - and - at last – “one male under 16” – John. He would grow up to be the first treasurer of Springfield Township, Ohio and die to share a gravestone with his parents and wife in Springfield Cemetery. The 1800 Census again lists them in Stillwater with 7 children; Ephraim and Cornelius had been born; the older daughters had probably married and moved away. Soon after Jacob’s father Cornelius died in the Mariaville section of Duanesburg that year, Jacob moved his family west, probably following the Mohawk River. He showed up in March 1803 at the first town meeting in Cato (later Sterling) about 150 miles west of Stillwater. He was elected an overseer of the poor and one of two assessors. Cato voted to pay a $5 bounty for each bear and a $30 bounty for each wolf killed in the limits of the town. In 1808 Jacob settled in the north-west corner of the town on Lot #14 in Little Sodus (now Fair Haven but then a part of Sterling). When the War of 1812 was heating up, the frontier town of Sterling raised a militia regiment to guard the harbor at Little Sodus and the nine miles of shore line to Oswego. They convinced Governor Tompkins to exempt them from the draft. He asked for a bond in return for 40 stands of arms and two kegs of powder. Endorsing the bond were Jacob Wiltse, Esq. and Captain Joseph Divine, Sr. who volunteered to command ‘The Home Guard.” The men, including John Wiltse and Linus Frost, another future Springfield Township pioneer, were released from the draft but stood as Minute Men stationed as guards at Little Sodus in case of an invasion. At an alarm from Oswego, Capt. Devine called out his company. They were present at the Battle of Oswego. During the War in 1813 Jacob left the Sotus area and moved to the eastern edge of Cayuga County where he bought 76 acres of Lot 13 in Sterling on the Oswego County line adjacent to the town of Hannibal. His brothers Henry and Benjamin soon became his next door neighbors when they purchased Lot 47 in what became known as the Wiltseville section of Hannibal. His brothers are buried in the Hannibal Cemetery. But ten years later in 1823, when Jacob and Esther were pushing 70, the Wiltse wilderness itch set in again. They decided to move West with Cornelius, the only child who was still living with them in the 1820 census. Jacob assigned 54 acres of his farm to Ephraim and John. In 1824 they headed for Ohio with Cornelius and his recent bride, Electa Cleaveland, her brother Jonah, and perhaps other pioneers. Electa’s less adventurous grandfather General Jedidiah Marvin joined the Shakers and stayed in Sodus. The Wiltses, Cleavelands, and later the Divines and Frosts settled in Georgeburg, Waynesfield Township, Wood County, Ohio, now known as Maumee. Soon after their arrival, Cornelius Wiltse went to the Wooster land office in April of 1824 and bought 80 acres of the 12 Mile Square Reserve in Section 21 of Lucas County. Not until after Jacob’s death in 1827 did Cornelius travel back to Sterling and join his brothers in selling most of Lot 13 for $500. In the 1830 census the families of Jacob’s sons Ephraim and Cornelius were both counted in Waynesfield. Esther was probably the “over 80 year old female” living with Cornelius. However, John Wiltse was still taxed that year in Sterling where all his and Joanna’s children were born and were still living with them - Lucy, Hiram, Mahala, Electa, Silas, Mary Anne, Esther, James and John, Jr., but in 1831 they also removed to Ohio. After his mother Esther died, Cornelius ventured further into the wilderness of Michigan. Like his ggg grandfather, the seaman Hendrick Martense Wiltse, Cornelius knew how to navigate on many waters. He piloted a flatboat in 1837 up the Maumee river, into Lake Erie, north on the St. Clair River into Lake Huron, then through Saginaw Bay, and finally up the Tittabawasee River. On its bank he built a blockhouse for his family of seven children. He moved two more times after that, both within Saginaw County where he and his descendents are buried in the Owen Cemetery. The Springfield Historic Society will honor Jacob Wiltse (and I hope Esther as well) on June 7 this year. Although I am unable to attend, I’ve written this memorial as a kin keeper. I descend from Cornelius’ Ohio born son Henry who married Louisa Frost, daughter of Linus Frost and Lucinda Devine whose roots go back to the Cayuga County militia men in the war of 1812. I left Michigan in 1962 for Ohio, New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts, New York again, Colorado, New Jersey again and finally Connecticut, home of Linus Frost who left Hartford in 1800 for Oswego, New York, then moved to Maumee, and died there when his Conestoga wagon was packed to head for Saginaw in 1854. Lucinda went anyway, taking with her my great grandmother Louisa and three other children. Jacob’s namesake – Jacob Tileman – was the first Jacob Wiltse’s ggg grandmother Teuntje Straatsman’s 3rd husband. Peter Stuyvesant had left him behind in the Caribbean when he set sail for New Amsterdam with Teuntje and her 3 children, each fathered by a different soldier in Dutch-occupied Brazil in the 17th Century. Teuntje was married to her fourth soldier when she died at age 44. But Jacob Tileman, ‘the risen father’ as the Dutch Domine (minister) Henricus Seljins dubbed him, came to New York after the British took over, reunited with the Wiltses, and as godfather, he witnessed the baptism of the first Jacob Wiltse on March 18, 1676 in Brooklyn, NY. Sources: History of Sterling, New York from: History of Cayuga County, New York by: Elliot G. Storke, Assisted by: Jos H. Smith, Pub by: D. Mason & Co., Syracuse, NY, 1879 Re War of 1812: Pioneers of Sterling, NY by Hallie DeMass Sweeting, pp. 19-20.


----------------------------------------------2008 - The Chloe Lees Family

Chloe was born on August 10 or 16, 1793 in Sandisfield, Berkshire County, Massachusetts, the daughter of Stephen and Esther (Hollister) Sage who were from Connecticut. Their ancestor. David Sage, came to the colonies from Wales between 1638 and 1664. Another ancestor with the name of Le Sage was from France and migrated to Wales between 1565 and 1588.

Chloe had 9 brothers and sisters, one of whom, Dennis, came to the Springfield Township area in 1829. Chloe followed in 1830 with her children. It is assumed that she was a widow since her husband, William, is not mentioned in family records after they arrived in Ohio except to state that he was born on December 13, 1789. In the first census of 1840 for Springfield Township, she is listed as the head of household with six other family members. One of those was a 40-50 year old male who was probably her brother, Dennis, since he cannot be located in that same census. She purchased property from Jacob Barnes in 1831, and sold property to John Janes in 1838.

Chloe died on January 4, 1879 on her farm in Springfield Township. Many of her children and grandchildren remained in the Maumee Valley area. Her son, William, purchased property in 1844 from Samuel and Abigail Wood. He was the oldest of the children (an older brother, Thomas Newton, was born in 1819, but died within a month), born on July 6, 1820 in Connecticut. In 1860 he was living with his mother in Springfield Township on the home farm. He died on March 15, 1895, and is buried in Springfield Township Cemetery.

A second son, Edmund, was born on September 13, 1822, in Connecticut. He married first to Mary Ann Cullen on May 26, 1852, and they had one child, Chloe M. who was born in 1853. His second marriage was to Elizabeth Arabelle McCaughey on June 12, 1866. Her children were Stephen D., Ora, and Sarah M. He was listed as a member of the Springfield Township Militia when it was assembled on June 4, 1844, and was a director of the Lucas County Agricultural Society in 1858-59. Taking an active part in protesting the secession of states prior to the Civil War he attended rallies supporting the formation of the 14th Regiment, Ohio Volunter Infantry in 1861. After the war he continued working with the farming community and became a member of the Swan Creek Mutual Protection Society in 1879 whose purpose was to protect residents in the area from petty thievery. Edmund died September 8, 1899, and is buried with his wife and family in Springfield Cemetery.

Simeon Perry Lees was her fourth son, born on August 3, 1824 in Connecticut. He was a carpenter and farmer living in Springfield Township his entire life. Like his brother, he took part in the rallies and protests prior to the Civil War in 1861. He served as the Treasurer for Springfield Township in the 1870s and 1880s. In 1854, he married Anna Mariah Culamore in Maumee. They had five children: Cora, William, Simeon Perry, Mary, and Jane. He died December 16, 1898 on his farm and is buried in Springfield Cemetery with his family.

Chloe's last child was Robert T. who was born October 2, 1825 in Connecticut. He was a farmer in the township and married Mary J. Shaw on September 2, 1855. He served as Treasurer for Springfield Township in 1861. It is not known whether they had children.


----------------------------------------2007 - The Thomas Wood Family

In her “History of Holland, Ohio”, Lola Vesey Merrell states that Thomas Wood was a soldier in the War of 1812. He would have been about 18 years old when the war started and since he was born in the District of Columbia you can wonder if he was there when the White House was burned, or could he have served in Fort McHenry, a short distance away in Baltimore, when Frances Scott Key composed the “Star Spangled Banner.” It could also be that he served in a guard post during this second war for independence and never saw any action. Someday we may know the facts about his service, but at the present we can only speculate. He was born in the newly surveyed District of Columbia (established on July 16, 1790 from parts of Maryland and Virginia) on October 1, 1793, based on the inscription from his tombstone which reads Thomas Wood - Died, Feb. 27. 1860, aged 67 yrs., 4 mo. & 26 day.” Information at this time is sketchy about his parents, but they may have been John and Elizabeth (Clayton) Wood.

His children state in census records after 1880 that their parents were born in Maryland. He may have been born in that part of southern Maryland which became a part of the District of Columbia. Family records state that he married Matilda Grant who was born in Maryland around 1797. That date is also based on the inscription from her tombstone which reads “Matilda, wife of Thomas Wood, Died Feb. 24, 1860, aged 63 yr.”

They were married in Maryland and their first child, Elisa L., was born in New York on 1815. There last child, Mary Jane, was born on July 4, 1835, in New York. Children born in between were: Martha M, born 1826; John, born 1828; Perry, born 1830; Harrison, born 1831; and James T., born 1833.

The family probably came to the Township in the latter part of 1835 or the first part of 1836, since Thomas was elected as one of the first trustees for Springfield Township when the first organizational election was held at the house of William Ford on October 8, 1836. On April 2, 1838, he was replaced as a trustee but was elected as a constable. In 1858 and 1859, he was again chosen to be a trustee by the voters.

By 1840, Thomas had built a Tavern just west of Holloway Road on what is now Airport Highway. The first church in the township (Methodist Church) held services in the tavern by 1840 in the tavern before moving to the Red or Sage School on Holloway Road (in front of what is now the Fox Run Condominiums). He was very active in raising funds for the erection of a permanent church to the west of the present cemetery in 1860. Descendants of Thomas Wood continue to live in the village and Township, as well as throughout the United States. The family continued to be active in community affairs and local politics throughout the history of the Village of Holland and Springfield Township.


-----------------------------------------------2007 - The Dennis Sage Family

In the later years of the 1820s, Northwest Ohio and most of the area known as Waynesfield Township in Wood County (later to become part of Lucas County with the townships of Providence, Monclova, Springfield, Adams, Sylvania, etc.) was sparsely populated by trappers, traders, Indians, or in many cases, no one. The Miami River of the Lake which was now being called by the name, Maumee, had populous settlements in the communities of Fort Industry, Port Lawrence, Vistula, Perrysburg, and Maumee, where there were households, businesses and churches.

Some of the sense of community that these pioneers had lived with in their native states of New York, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Vermont, and Pennsylvania also came with them. The lake boats from Detroit, Michigan and Erie, Pennsylvania, offered the goods and luxuries that were to be had in their home towns, but at an increased cost so that often they substituted goods produced in the home or locally, or did without them. Living 5 or more miles away from these communities increased the hardships and not many families lived in those areas.

In 1829, Dennis Sage located about 5-10 miles from the village of Maumee in what is now close to the corner of Airport Highway and Holloway Road. The census for Waynesfield Township (Springfield Township was still within these boundaries) for 1830 shows him as a 30-40 year old and living in his household was a 30-40 year old female and two boys, one between 5-10 years old and the other less than 5 years old. This 30-40 year old female and children may have been his sister, Chloe Lees and her children, since local history states that she arrived in the area shortly after Dennis.

In the census of 1840 for Springfield Township, Dennis’ sister is shown with her children and a 40-50 year old male living in the household. It was unusual for a woman to be listed as the head of household in these early census records unless she was a widow or the husband was incapable of caring for himself or was not living in the household for any number of reasons. Since there is no later mention of Chloe’s husband, William Lees, it could be assumed that this 40-50 year old man was Dennis. There is only one listing for a Dennis Sage in the census of 1840 for the whole country and that is in Nantucket County, Massachusetts. It lists a 30-40 year old African-American in the household. No one else is listed in the household. Since the Dennis from Springfield Township was not African-American, this is either a free African-American with the same name or the servant of someone whose name is the same. Since later history records state that Dennis had lived his life in Springfield Township after moving there it can be assumed that Dennis was living with his sister in Springfield Township.

From family records we know that Dennis was born on March 20, 1794 or 1795, in Sandisfield, Berkshire County, Massachusetts. He was the son of Stephen and Esther (Hollister) Sage, who were from Middlesex County, Connecticut. He migrated to what is now Springfield Township around 1829. The History of Toledo and Lucas County written in 1888 states: “Dennis Sage was probably the first or among the first. He settled in the Township in 1829, and at the time of his death was the oldest living pioneer.”

By 1850, Dennis had married Sarah (Wood) Holloway, the widow of Herbert Holloway, and was living in Springfield Township, Lucas County, Ohio. He was around 55 years old at the time and no record exists of him being married before this time. She was the widow of Herbert Holloway (who died in 1846). According to some family records, Sarah was the sister of Thomas Wood, who was also a pioneer of Springfield Township. She was born February 14, 1819, in New York. She first married Herbert Holloway, the son of Peter and Sophia (Seymour) Holloway (who were also pioneers of Springfield Township). Herbert was born on March 27, 1806 and died on September 10, 1846, and is buried in the township cemetery. Herbert and Sarah had four children who are listed with Sarah and Dennis Sage in the 1850 census: Edwin, born 1837; Mary Jane, born ca 1840; George Washington, born 1844; and Herbert, born 1846.

Sarah and Dennis also had four children: Helen, born ca 1850; Stephen, born ca 1852; Ida E., born ca 1855; and Thomas W., born ca 1859. Sarah died September 22, 1871 and is buried in the township cemetery with Dennis, who died in 1887. Thomas W. owned the first hardware store in the township and village and was active in community affairs. Dennis was a Township Treasure in 1843-1845, 1847-1850, 1851, and 1853, and a Township Trustee in 1860. He was a farmer in the township until his death at the age of 93 in 1887.


------------------------------------2006 - The Thomas Dunn Family

Thomas Dunn was born February 28, 1826, in Ireland and came to Springfield Township between 1850 and 1860 with his wife, Ellen. Their first child, Thomas, was born in 1854 in Ohio, so it is possible that they were living in the township by that time.

Ellen Dunn was born in New York on December 12, 1835. Their seven children were named Thomas M., Ellen E., Mary C., James Frank, Anna T., Margaret C., and Patrick J.

On May 22, 1852, the first train ran though what is now Holland and shortly after a railroad station was created. Thomas was either the first or one of the first station agents and is listed in the 1860 and 1870 census for the township as such. He was the station agent for 19 years and also served as postmaster for the township during the Civil War. He died before 1880, and Ellen continued to raise the children.

Their first son, Thomas, lived in the township throughout his life working as a railroad section hand and foreman. He never married.

Of their other children, Ellen became a school teacher in the township; James also worked on the railroad as a section hand; and Anna married James Urban and they moved to Plymouth County, Iowa, for a short time around 1910, where James worked as a railroad freight agent. They later moved back to Springfield Township where their daughter worked as a railroad clerk.

Another son, Patrick J., was born in April 1873 in Springfield Township and married Philomena Champion around 1902. Patrick was a railroad foreman and later a sales manager for Ohio Bell Telephone Company. The family operated the telephone exchange for the community in the early 1900s.

Philomena (Minnie) was the daughter of Joseph and Ursula Champion who were early settlers of the township, arriving in the 1850s from Switzerland and Germany respectively. They had three daughters, Irene M., Helen E. and Evelyn B.

Irene was born in 1903 and married Kent Meader. She lived in Toledo and cared for both her mother and Helen before they died. She was always available for her family.

Helen was born in 1909 and graduated from Holland High School in 1926 with the highest scholastic average in the school’s history at the time. She graduated from the University of Toledo in 1930 with the bachelor’s degree in journalism cum laude. From 1930 until 1937 she was the editor and publisher of the Holland Citizen and also wrote a syndicated column for weekly newspapers, was women’s editor of the Maumee Valley News, and was a local reporter for the Toledo Blade. In 1937, she began chairing a committee that later developed the first Holland Strawberry Festival, held in 1938. She worked with this committee for many years after and was a member when they purchased and developed Strawberry Acres Park in 1953. She returned to teach journalism at the University of Toledo from 1955 to 1957. During World War II, she was the public relations director for Civil Defense of Northwest Ohio. She also was public relations director for both the Toledo Deanery of Catholic Women and the American Red Cross. She held many offices and memberships in public relations, advertising and journalism societies. Her creativeness and ingenuity carried through her private life as she designed woodcuts for Christmas and making cards for her many friends across the country. Helen died May 12, 1971, at the home of her sister, Irene Maeder, in Toledo.

Evelyn was born in 1912 and married first to Richard Holtz and, after his death, to Karl Keefer. She attended Holland schools and graduated from Holland High School in 1930. She attended the University of Toledo and was a member of the Alpha Phi Gamma honorary journalistic society. She was the Society Editor for the Blade and with her sister started the Holland Citizen in the 1930s. After she married Richard Holtz, they had a son who was also named Richard. Richard, Sr., owned a prosperous women’s shoe store in downtown Toledo, a veteran of World War I, a deputy under sheriff David Krieger, and a member of St. Joseph’s Church in Maumee. He died in January, 1950. Evelyn was the first Public Relations Director for St. Vincent’s Hospital and also was an account executive with a public relations and advertising firm before joining the staff of the Red Cross in 1955, where she retired in 1977. She was cited by the National Red Cross in 1975 for her service in its program of assistance to Indochinese refugees. As Director of Youth Services for the Red Cross, she worked with elementary, junior high and high school students in the northern Ohio area in programs for citizenship development, literacy and volunteering. She was active in many civic organizations and was president of the Women’s Advertising Club of Toledo, when she was honored as “President of the Year” by the American Advertising Federation which also named the local organization as one of its “Clubs of the Year”. In 1988, she received the AAF’s silver medal for Meritorious service. St. Vincent’s Hospital and medical Center named her “Woman of Toledo” for her community leadership in 1980. Evelyn died September 20, 1993 in St. Vincent Hospital.

The house at 208 Maumee Street in Holland has been known as the Dunn House for many decades. Patrick and Philomena (Champion) Dunn probably acquired this house in the early 1900s. Philomena’s mother. Ursula, owned property next door and across the street from the house in 1905, where Ursula moved from the family farm on Holland-Sylvania Road.


---------------------------------------------2006 - The Mabel Hovey Family

On Tuesday, December 18, 1923, an election was held in Holland to decide whether the village should be incorporated. The vote was 96 for and 41 against. Mabel Hovey was then elected as the first mayor with no opposition and became one of two women mayors in Ohio at that time, the other being in Lake County. She served in this capacity until 1925 when she declined to run for a second term. She believed that “what Holland has been is nothing compared to what it could be” and worked for Holland as a duty in which she always took great pleasure.

Miss Hovey had been born in Springfield Township in October 1878, the daughter of George E. and Adelaide S. Hovey, who in addition to Mabel had 4 other children: Mildred B., Myra C., Jay P., and Edgar C. They came to Springfield Township from Camden, Lorain County, Ohio between 1870 and 1880 with his father and mother, Alvan and Sarah (Cook) Hovey. Mabel’s father and grandparents were from Vermont, while her mother had been born in England.

The parents of Alvan Hovey, John and Elizabeth Owen (Hill) Hovey, came to Ohio in 1833 or 1834, settling in Troy Township, Athens County, Ohio. Alvan was a soldier at Columbia Barracks in Clark County, Oregon Territory in 1850 while his parents had moved to Camden with the rest of their family.

The Hovey family were early settlers in Ipswich, Massachusetts, and her ancestor, Daniel, had immigrated in 1635, when he was seventeen years old. He was involved in the wars with the New England Indians and after suffering much from those incidents, died in 1692.

Mabel attended school in Springfield Township and graduated from the first class of Holland High School in 1898 that had one other graduate, Eathel (Ethel) Wood. She must have received a teaching certificate by 1900 since in that year she was listed as a public school teacher in the census.

The picture of the students and teacher at Richfield Center School in 1896 shows her on the back row to the far right. By 1910 she had moved to Township 7, Range 4, District 38, Jefferson County, Montana, where she again is listed as a public school teacher. By 1920 she was back in Holland living with her widowed mother, and along with her lifelong friend, Eathel (Ethel) Wood, taught in the Eight Square School House on what is now Garden Road. She taught school for a total of 35 years in both Montana and Springfield Township. She was one of the organizers of the Holland / Springfield High School Alumni Association and served as president of that group. She also was the Superintendent of Sunday School at the Holland (Clark) Memorial Methodist Church, serving the congregation as their treasurer and being involved in the Ladies Aid Society and a member of the Women’s Society of Christian Service. Before there were such things as branch libraries or bookmobiles, Mabel and her mother used a room in their house to provide library services to the village. Days were set aside when both children and adults could visit the Hovey home and borrow or read the books available. She supported the organization of the Strawberry Festival in Holland and served as a judge of special events in 1938 with her mother and other citizens of the village. By World War II, she had become incapacitated and was confined to a wheel chair. She still was involved in the community and collected the names of servicemen and women in the township and organized a group to erect a board bearing their names in the village. One of the memories of her was that she was spoken of with great respect and that although frail before her passing, she still had a strong voice and a positive attitude. Mabel died on September 21, 1946, and is buried in Springfield Township Cemetery.


2005 - The Trumbull/Jackson House and Families

This house was probably built around 1878. It is in Hall's second addition, so was probably built by Franklin Hall for the Trumbull family. Charles and Louisa Trumbull lived there 1889-1890; Calvin Trumbull 1890-1893; William Dorcas 1893-1900; Frank Dorcas 1900-1905; Ursula Champion 1905-1919; John and Alta Albon 1919-1921; Daisy Hartman 1921-1947; George and Bernice Hartman in 1947-1963; David and Nancy Irwin in 1963; Stanley Bowers 1963-1968; and Richard and Diann Jackson from 1968 untul the present. The Trumbull family were early pioneers of Springfield Township having come here before 1840. The other families who have lived there are a litany of early settlers and prominent citizens of the Township.


---------------------------------------------2004 - The John Walker Family

Built in 1861 as one of the first houses in what was later known as the Hall addition, it was first occupied by one of the members of the Hall family. In the late 1800s, it became the home of John Walker, who housed the post office there, and was both postmaster and constable in Holland.


-------------------------------------2003 - The Temperance Inn / John Shaner Family

The Temperance Inn was located on what is now the southeast corner of Holloway Road and Railroad Street in Holland. From the name of the Inn it must have been used by those who did not use alcohol and were temperate in their behavior. Lola Vesey Merrell states that it was a “hotel in the Shaner home” in her History of Holland.

Local history also claims that the home or inn was used as a station on the Underground Railroad. If this is the case, the Inn must have existed prior to 1860. The story passed down about the railroad is that slaves escaping to Canada would use Wolf Creek as cover to get to the Temperance Inn and wait until they were signaled before leaving the creek bed and hurrying to safety. The signal was given by a candle being placed behind a green or blue glass pane in a window or door. There was also a red pane to signal that there was danger in trying to secure shelter at the Inn and that the person or persons should move on to the next stop or back to the previous one. It may have been owned by another person at that time, since census records show that John Shaner was not in Springfield Township until after 1860 and before 1870. In 1860 they were living in Perrysburg Township, Wood County, Ohio.

John Shaner was born on March 1, 1808 in Pennsylvania, possibly Lycoming County. He was married twice, first to Elizabeth Smee, and after she died in 1861 to Sarah Jane Trapp. John and Elizabeth probably came to Ohio in the late 1820s or early 1830s. They may have initially lived in Athens County where Adam Shaner (John’s father) was living in 1840.

Adam Shaner (John's father) was born in Maryland and married to Deborah Ivers of Pennsylvania. Adam’s grandfather, Matthias, was the first of the family to come to the American colonies from Alsace-Lorraine in the mid 1700s. He was married to Sophronia Fanny Poe who had been born in Frederick County, Maryland, but whose parents were part of the immigration of Germans for the Lower Rhenish Palatinate in the early 1700s. Matthias' son, Henry, was the grandfather of John and father of Adam Shaner.

John and Elizabeth (Smee) Shaner's first son, Russel McMurray was born on May 1, 1827 in Pennsylvania followed by Elizabeth Jane in 1829. After moving to Ohio they had Isaac, who was born on September 30, 1832; John, born August 28, 1833; twins, Thomas and Adam, born October 30, 1835; and Martha Ann, born August 29, 1838. By 1840, they were in Perrysburg Township, where Wesley was born on January 30, 1841; and Abiah was born on July 15, 1847. On July 16, 1861, Elizabeth probably died in Perrysburg Township.

After Elizabeth’s death John continued farming in Springfield Township marrying Sarah Jane Trapp after Elizabeth’s death. She may have been the widow of Dennis Trapp, whose father came to Springfield Township before 1840. She was born on July 5, 1827 and died in 1897. Their children were Alice Elizabeth, born September 26, 1862; George Clair, born July 27, 1866; and Joseph B. Trapp, born December 1869.

Alice Elizabeth was a teacher at the Green and Starr (Crissey) schools in the township. She married George W. Smith and they moved to Republic County, Kansas in the early 1900s before returning to Springfield Township. They later moved to Fulton County where Alice died on September 16, 1945 in Swanton.

According to Ada Vesey Merrell’s history the Shaner house was purchased by Barbara Holloway after Sarah’s death in 1897. Joseph must have retained ownership of the orchard for a time even though he was living in Summerfield, Michigan. He sold that land to Dr. E.M. Latham in 1903 who platted the land and after retaining a site for his family and Office, sold ten lots, the first house built on them was by Frank Rumsey. The Albert A. Vesey family bought the lot on what is now the western corner of Railroad and Jefferson Streets and moved their grocery there in 1898 from what had been the Palmer House on Clark and Front Streets. The Shaner home purchased by Barbara Holloway was later sold to the Null Family and presently is owned by the Irons family.


-----------------------------------------------The Peter Holloway Family

From Lola (Vesey) Merrill’s book “A History of Holland, Ohio, 1829-1953” “Peter and Sophia Holloway with their five sons and three daughters came to Ohio from New York in 1834 and following a brief stay in Maumee, settled in Springfield Township. Mr. Holloway was an 1812 veteran from New York, a volunteer in the Cavalry, and he reached Buffalo when the town was in flames set by the British as they left the port. He died in September, 1865. One of his sons, Charles B., married Nancy Ann Gunn, daughter of Asman Gunn, a pioneer of this township. Charles was a State Representative and father to Abbie (Holloway) Martin and to Emmett. Abbie died in September, 1946, at 81 years. Emmett, now 90, still lives on the old farm which has been in family ownership for about 118 years. On New Year’s Eve, 1900, Emmett and Ora Demotte, daughter of Samuel, were married and had five daughters and one son. Mrs. Holloway died June 11, 1951. Their oldest daughter, Abbie, met tragic death in a train wreck at Attica, Indiana, on May 29, 1924. Mr. Holloway recalls as a lad of 13, accompanying his parents to the Centennial Exposition in 1876 at Philadelphia.” Peter Holloway was born in Dighton, Massachusetts on May 21, 1778, the son of Peter and Abigail (Gooding) Holloway. In 1786, the family moved northwest to Shelburne (closer to the New York state line). In 1796, they moved again to the frontier at Canandaigua in what is now Ontario County, New York (about 40-50 miles from Buffalo). Family records (William Holloway of Taunton, Mass., in 1637 and his Descendants, 1586-1949, by Everett Hall Pendleton) state that he became a blacksmith and worked much of the time for Indians since they were more numerous then the frontiersmen at the time. The first definite record the family has of him is when he bought property in the town of Bloomfield in 1804 where he started his own blacksmith shop. He later ran a hotel and also was engaged in farming at this time. He married Sophia (Abby) Seymour, a daughter of Ira and Ruth (Smith) Seymour around 1805. She was born around 1784 in Massachusetts. On December 23, 1813, he volunteered for cavalry service in Captain Isaac Hone’s Company, 12th Regimental Cavalry (Boughton’s), New York Militia. According to a history of the War of 1812, 129 mounted volunteers under Lt. Col. Boughton were reviewed in Buffalo on December 27 and they possibly “had a brush with the enemy when they landed on the outskirts of the town soon after midnight on the 30th.” He was discharged on January 21, 1814. Buffalo, New York was burned on December 30, 1813. Sophia and Peter sold their property in Bloomfield in 1814 and they bought land in Caledonia, Genesee County (later becoming a part of Livingston County), New York, in 1815. In 1824, he is shown in the tax rolls for York, Livingston County, and also purchased land there in 1825. They lived there until his father’s death in 1832, when the moved to Maumee, Lucas County, Ohio (then Wood County). They then moved to what was later Springfield Township in 1833-34 where they lived for the remainder of their lives. Peter was active in the early affairs of the Township, serving as clerk from 1836 until 1840, was a Justice of the Peace in 1850, and served as a delegate to the Congressional District Convention of the Whig Party in 1840. Peter died on September 1, 1865 and Sophia died on July 22, 1867. Both are buried in Springfield Township Cemetery. They had eight children; Abigail, Chester Seymour, Eliza Sophia, George Gooding, Mary Ann, Herbert, Peter and Charles Byron. Herbert, Peter and Charles Byron lived their entire lives in Springfield and Monclova Townships where they were active in the community as were their children. Charles Byron was born in York, New York, on June 14, 1826, and married Nancy Ann Gunn, the daughter of Osman (also Asman) Gunn, a pioneer of Springfield Township, on May 3, 1855. She was born on August 1, 1829, in Damascus Township, Henry County, Ohio. He volunteered for service in the Civil war, entering as a Captain in 1863 and was soon elected Lieutenant-Colonel of the 4th Regiment, Ohio Militia receiving his commission from Governor Todd on August 30, 1863. After the war he returned to the farm in Springfield Township and became active in local politics serving as Township Clerk in 1852-1855, 1858, and 1861, and a Township Trustee from 1863-1867. In 1879 he was elected to the Ohio Assembly where he served until 1881. He sponsored a telegraph bill that would prevent railroads from giving the exclusive right of way to any one telegraph company. It passed by a vote of 80 votes for and 0 votes against. He had the house built that presently stand on what was the family farm. Charles died on July 27, 1903 and Nancy Ann on August 19, 1909. Both are buried in Springfield Township Cemetery.


---------------------------------------------2003 - The John Burchfield Family

From Lola (Vesey) Merrill’s book “A History of Holland, Ohio, 1829-1953” “John and Mary (Cunnicum) Burchfield with their family left Tuscarawas County, Ohio, in September, 1834, and settled on what was called “canal land” owned by the government. The sheep-skin deed was signed by Andrew Jackson. Mr. and Mrs. Burchfield had six sons and eight daughters. Joshua, one of the sons, born March 20, 1829, left the farm at 23 years and accompanied a party driving cattle to California, where he spent five years in prospect gold mining. On return to the homestead, he bought the heir-shares of the farm and cleared it for farming and sheep raising. He married Mary Jane Brindle and to their marriage were brought three daughters, Ada, Arletta, Hattie, and a son, Clarence. Joshua died June 13, 1870, at 70 years. Clarence Burchfield married on March 22, 1899, to Alyda Wood, daughter of James and Amanda Wood. They have a daughter, Laverne, who is affiliated with the American Society of Publilc Administration of Chicago. The son, Donovan, operates the farm. Donovan and Anna Farsworth were united in marriage in June, 1929. A son and daughter, fifth descendants, were born on this homestead. Anna died in April, 1939. Clarence J. died June 13, 1945. Donovan remarried in June, 1948, to Anna St. John. The Burchfield’s in the many years of farming have collected a box filled with the various types of flint and other Indian relics picked up from their land. They also have a sample of the first strap-rails 5/8 inch think and 2 ½ inches wide used as the first railroad track in 1852 through Holland. They also have the level used in the construction of the railroad.” John Burchfield was born on October 28, 1802 in Pennsylvania (possibly Fayette County), the son of Matthias and Barbara (Overholt) Burchfield. When Springfield Township was established in 1836, he was elected one of the first Township Trustees and served as the first chairman of the trustees. He served as a trustee in 1836, 1837 and again in 1841. He also served as a Justice of the Peace beginning in 1836. His untimely death occurred on May 18, 1848, and he was buried on the family farm in Springfield Township. Mary (Cunnicum) Burchfield was born on February 4, 1806 in Somerset County (possibly Milford Township), Pennsylvania. He surname may also have been Cunningham, and her parents would then be Frank and Esther (Humbert) Cunningham. John and Mary were married on September 2, 1824 in Tuscarawas County, Ohio. Their children were: Sarah, Mary, Joshua, Frederick, Jacob, Elizabeth, Barbara, Eli, Mehitable (a twin), Anna (a twin), Charlotte, Aaron, Martha and Lafayette. Two of her sons died during the Civil War – Aaron died on May 16, 1862 in Jefferson Barracks, St. Louis, Missouri, and Eli died at Andersonville Prison in Sumter Couty, Georgia, on Septembr 27, 1864. Mary may have returned to Tuscarawas County after the death of John, and later lived with her daughter Sarah (Burchfield) Shetler in Stark County, Ohio. Mary died in Stark County, Ohio on July 9, 1879, and is buried in Navarre, Ohio.


  1. Thank you for the interesting information.

  2. Regarding The Trumbull/Jackson house. Richard and Betty Irwin occupied the house from 1954 to 1956 and Nancy and I lived there from 1956 to 1963. The house had deteriated somewhat and I had to do extensive restructuring to level things back up. David Irwin

  3. What a great site. It has given me much new information. My maiden name is Corson, and my GGrandparents were Jacob and Elizabeth Taylor Corson and are buried in Springfield Cemetery along with many of their children and their grandchildren. My Grandfather William Hutchingson Corson was born their as was my Father Paul Gordon.