Portrait & Biographical

Album

of St Joseph County, MI

containing

Portraits and Biographical Sketches of Prominent and Representative Citizens of the Country,

together with
Portraits and Biographies of all the Governors of the State and,
of the Presidents of the United States
Chicago:
Chapman Brothers,
1885
  

The greatest of English historians, Macauley, and one of the most brilliant writers of the past century, has said: "The history of a country is best told in a record of the lives of its people." In conformity with this idea the PORTRAIT AND BIOGRAPHICAL ALBUM of this county has been prepared. Instead of going to musty records, and taking there from dry statistical matter that can be appreciated by but few, our corps of writers have gone to the people, the men and women who have, by their enterprise and industry, brought the county to a rank second to none among those comprising this great and noble State, and from their lips have the story of their life struggles. No more interesting or instructive matter could be presented to an intelligent public. In this volume will be found a record of many whose lives are worthy the imitation of coming generations. It tells how some, commencing life in poverty, by industry and economy have accumulate wealth. It tells how others, with limited advantages for securing an education, have become learned men and women, with an influence extending throughout the length and breadth of the land. It tells of men who have risen from the lower walks of life to eminence as statesmen, and whose names have become famous. It tells of those in every walk in life who have striven to succeed, and records how that success has usually crowned their efforts. It tells also of many, very many, who not seeking the applause of the world, have pursued "the even tenor of their way," content to have it said of them as Christ said of the woman performing a deed of mercy-"they have done what they could." It tells how that many in the pride and strength of young manhood left the plow and the anvil, the lawyer's office and the counting-room, left every trade and profession, and at their country's call went forth valiantly "to do or die," and how through their efforts the Union was restored and peace once more reigned in the land. In the life of every man and of every woman is a lesson that should not be lose upon those who follow after.

The faces of some, and biographical sketches of many, will be missed in this volume. For this the publishers are not to blame. Not having a proper conception of the work, some refused to give the information necessary to compile a sketch, which others were indifferent. Occasionally some member of the family would oppose the enterprise, and on account of such opposition the support of the interested one would be withheld. In a few instances men could never be found, though repeated calls were made at their residence or place of business.

Chicago, February, 1885

Chapman Bros.

INTRODUCTORY

The time has arrived when it becomes the duty of the people of this county to perpetuate the names of their pioneers, to furnish a record of their early settlement, and relate the story of their progress. The civilization of our day, the enlightenment of the age and the duty that men of the present time owe to their ancestors, to themselves and to their posterity, demand that a record of their lives and deeds should be made. In biographical history is found a power to instruct man be precedent, to enliven the mental faculties, and to waft down the river of time a safe vessel in which the names and actions of the people who contributed to raise this country from its primitive state may be preserved. Surely and rapidly the great and aged men, who in their prime entered the wilderness and claimed the virgin soil as their heritage, are passing to their graves. The number remaining who can relate the incidents of the first days of settlement is becoming small indeed, so that an actual necessity exists for the collection and preservation of events without delay, before all the early settlers are cut down by the scythe of Time.

To be forgotten has been the great dread of mankind from remotest ages. All will be forgotten soon enough, in spite of their best works and the most earnest efforts of their friends to preserve the memory of their lives. The means employed to prevent oblivion and to perpetuate their memory has been in proportion to the amount of intelligence they possessed. The pyramids of Egypt were built to perpetuate the names and deed of their great rulers. The exhumations made by the archeologists of Egypt from buried Memphis indicate a desire of those people to perpetuate the memory of their achievements. The erection of the great obelisks were for the same purpose. Coming down to a later period, we find the Greeks and Romans erecting mausoleums and monuments, and carving out statues to chronicle their great achievements and carry them down the ages. It is also evident that the Mound-builders, in piling up their great mounds of earth, had but this idea-to leave something to show that they had lived. All these works, though many of them costly in the extreme, give but a faint idea of the lives and characters of those whose memory they were intended to perpetuate, and scarcely anything of the masses of the people that then lived. The great pyramids and some of the obelisks remain objects only of curiosity; the mausoleums, monuments and statues are crumbling into dust.

It was left to modern ages to establish an intelligent, undecaying, immutable method of perpetuating a full history-immutable in that it is almost unlimited in extent and perpetual in its action; and this is through the art of printing.

To the present generation, however, we are indebted for the introduction of the admirable system of local biography. By this system every man, though he has not achieved what the world calls greatness, has the means to perpetuate his life, his history, through the coming ages.

The scythe of Time cuts down all; nothing of the physical man is left. The monument which his children or friends may erect to his memory in the cemetery will crumble into dust and pass away; but his life, his achievements, the work he has accomplished, which otherwise would be forgotten, is perpetuated by a record of this kind.

To preserve the lineaments of our companions we engrave their portraits, for the same reason we collect the attainable facts of their history. Nor do we think it necessary, as we speak only truth of them, to wait until they are dead, or until those who know them are gone; to do this we are ashamed only to publish to the world the history of those whose lives are unworthy of public record.

 

Index of names

Adams, John Ahlgrim, Charles Amess, Samuel Barnard, Richard
Bates, William Baumeister, John Beck, James W Beckwith, Rodney
Bennett, Silas W Botzner, John Brooks, Joseph Butler, Benjamin F
Carpenter, Sidney Catton, Joseph B Clark, George D Clowes, Charles
Cottell, Charles Crooks, Corydon Cuddy, Thomas Davis, Abner
Dentler, Solomon Draper, Hiram Driesbach, Henry Driggs, Alfred L
Engle, James Farrand, Phineas Ferris, Nelson French, Albert C
French, Ozias F Gentzler, Adam Gladding, John P Graham, A. M.
Graham, Andrew J Graves, Luther Huffman, John M Ketchum, Henry Porter
Laird, Henry W Lewis, G Lohoff, John Marvin, J. A.
Nerhoot, Jesse Packard, Ira F Root, Henry E Rutherford, John
Schermerhorn, John Seaver, James Sevison, Henry Showerman, Stephen
Smith, James O Snyder, Stephen M Stear, William Stowell, Joseph
Valentine, Samuel Van Vorst, Abner J Wait, Jonathan G Warren, Henry W
Wellesley, E. C. Wells, Franklin Hecox, Hamden Aubrey

 

 

 This page was last modified < Friday, 19-Mar-2010 14:55:10 MDT >

This genealogical material was generously transcribed and donated by:
Denise Beckwith Frederick, Josephine Reed Garzelloni and Carole Lynn Carr

copyright copyright 2006 by Joel Newport