George Buck

George Buck was born in 1792 in Lewistown, Pa. His parents were Henry and Rachel Buck. Henry was a surgeon in the Revolutionary War, and later a doctor in Lewistown. He and his family moved to Millerstown, Pa. about 1800. Henry died in 1805. Rachel and her children lived on in Millerstown until about 1817.

George Buck and his brother Robert N Buck served in the War of 1812, in Fenton's Regiment of Pennsylvania Volunteers, under General Brown, fighting in the battles of Lundy's Lane and Chippewa.

In 1817 the Buck family moved to Columbiana County, Ohio. There George met and married Martha Irey, the daughter of Philip and Hannah Irey, in 1817. Along with several other members of the Buck family, they joined the Quaker Church. George bought a farm and learned the trade of weaving.

Philip Irey and Hannah (Brown) Irey had lived in Loudon County, Virginia, then moved to what was then Harrison County (then Virginia and what is now Barbour County, West Virginia), and then to Columbiana County, Ohio, about 1803. Philip had been a blacksmith, but bought a farm in Ohio. Martha was born in 1798 while they were living in Harrison County.

In 1830 the Quaker Church was being split by factionalism, and so George and his family left for Michigan, settling in St. Joseph County. Upon arrival in 1830, George and another pioneer, Jacob McEnterfer (also spelled McInterfer), bought a piece of public land, the NE quarter of Section 19, Township 6S, Range 11W, which is now the location of much of ward 2 of Three Rivers. George established a farm and built a log house, which also served as a tavern and hotel, at the corner of what would be Buck and 4th Streets today. He also began a ferry service at the foot of what was Main Street, but is today's Buck Street.

George and Jacob laid out a plat on their land and called it St. Joseph. The plat occupied the NE quarter of the land they had jointly purchased.

George became the postmaster and a Justice of the Peace for the Township which was originally called Bucks.

The proposed village didn't come to anything at the time. George did build a sawmill along the river in 1836. At some point, George built a house and hotel of sawed lumber at 4th and Pleasant Streets. The hotel was known as the Half-Way House.

In 1836, George bought out the McInterfer interest. George and four other businessmen (Simeon Brown, Hiram Pierson, Edward Pierson, and Benjamin Sherman) pooled their lands and formed the St. Joseph Canal and Lockport Manufacturing Association and laid a plat for the village of Lockport. This new plat used the 1830 plat of St. Joseph, but extended it to the west to the St. Joseph River, to the east into the land Simeon Brown contributed in Section 20, south into more of George's land and further south into Hiram Pierson's and Edward Pierson's lands. Then the (financial) Panic of 1837 hit and the project failed. After some legal actions, George ended up with the part of Lockport that he originally contributed to the Association, in addition to the part that Hiram Pierson had contributed. Lockport did become a village and later was incorporated into Three Rivers as the 2nd ward.

In 1840, Bucks Township was divided into Lockport and Bucks, the latter soon being renamed Fabius. By this time George had bought several other tracts of land and had managed to sell some of his lots in Lockport.

In 1846, George sold much of Lockport to Joseph Mather of Hartford, Connecticut, the lots north of Main (now Buck) Street and a strip of blocks between State and Broadway. In 1851, Mather, together with Stephen Weeden, of Springfield MA, and George Merriman, of Providence, RI, formed the Lockport Hydraulic Company to build the dam near 8th Street and the canal that George's Association had planned.

George Buck passed away in 1856. He was buried in a cemetery at 8th and Broadway in Lockport along with his first son Philip (died 1841) and first daughter Rachel (died 1834). They were disinterred and buried in Riverside Cemetery in Three Rivers. Martha died in 1874 and was buried beside her husband. Several of their children are also buried in Riverside Cemetery.

The children of George and Martha Buck were:

  1. Phillip Buck. Phillip was born in 1818 in Columbiana County, Ohio. He died in 1841 and is buried in Riverside Cemetery, Three Rivers.
  2. Lewis Dawson Buck was born August 16, 1819 in Columbiana County, Ohio. He married Mary Tracy, in 1854. He died May, 9, 1894 and was buried in Riverside Cemetery, Three Rivers.
  3. Rachel Buck. Rachel was born in 1821. She died in 1834 and is buried in Riverside Cemetery, Three Rivers.
  4. Elizabeth (Buck) Judson. Elizabeth was born June 14, 1823 in Columbiana County. She married Willis Judson February 27, 1850. She died March 18, 1903 and was buried in Schoolcraft, Kalamazoo County, MI.
  5. Martha (Buck) Feagles. Martha was born in 1826 in Columbiana County, Ohio. She married Jacob Feagles in 1849. Jacob enlisted in the 6th Michigan Infantry August 6, 1861, and died in New Orleans August 14, 1863. Martha died February 29, 1880 and was buried in Riverside Cemetery, Three Rivers.
  6. Hannah (Buck) Smith. Hannah was born in 1828 in Columbiana County, Ohio. She married William B. Smith February 7, 1854. She was probably living in Moody County, South Dakota at her death and buried there.
  7. George Washington Buck. George W was born in March 1829 in Columbiana County, Ohio. He married Lucy J. Arnold in 1854. He enlisted in the 13th Michigan Infantry as a Corporal December 21, 1861, and was discharged June 16, 1862. He died September 15, 1911, and was buried in Riverside Cemetery, Three Rivers.
  8. Mary Jane (Buck) Clark. Mary was born March 3, 1832 in Lockport. She married VanBuren Clark. She died November 4, 1920 in East Orange, New Jersey, and was buried in Riverside Cemetery, Three Rivers.
  9. Susan Anne (Buck) Mead. Susan was born April 9, 1834 in Lockport. She married Duncan S. Mead in 1864. She died May 15, 1914 and was buried in Riverside Cemetery, Three Rivers.
  10. Robert Henry Buck. Robert was born March 31, 1836 in Lockport. He married Elizabeth Jane Bush in 1860. He enlisted in the 25th Michigan Infantry, August 22, 1861, and was mustered out June 24, 1865. He died March 22, 1918 in St Paul, Minnesota, and was buried in Osage, Iowa.
  11. Thomas Eli Buck. Thomas was born July 20, 1838 in Lockport. He married Louisa Abigail Hulbert in 1861 in Three Rivers. He enlisted in the 1st Regiment Michigan Engineers and Mechanics, November 20, 1863 and was mustered out June 19, 1865. He died April 8, 1903 and was buried in Park Rapids, Minnesota.
  12. Charles P. Buck. Charles was born September 13, 1842 in Lockport. He enlisted in the 25th Michigan Infantry August 11, 1862, was promoted to Sergeant in 1864, and was mustered out June 24, 1865. He married Lucy M. Avery in Three Rivers in 1868. He died in Bellaire, Ohio, May 30, 1888, and was buried in Riverside Cemetery, Three Rivers.

Most of the signs of George Buck in Three Rivers have disappeared. The site of George Buck's first house is now buried under a large warehouse. The St. Joseph River bed is now west of where it was in 1830 and the site of his ferry is now covered over with woods. Railroad tracks run right across the site of his second house. Lockport itself remains as the name of the Township. Only Madison remains of the street names in the 1830 plat. Aside from Main (now Buck) Street, the street names from the 1836 plat of Lockport are still the same. The canal is gone, but the dam remains. There is an elegant monument in Riverside Cemetery, beside where George, Martha, and descendants are buried.

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copyrightThis website is created and copyrighted 2011 by Joel Newport

George Buck biography copyrighted 2011 by Roger V. Buck.