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Yorkville Township Biographical Sketches

As published in "The History of Racine and Kenosha Counties" (Chicago: 1879), pages 653-658

HENRY D. ADAMS, M. D., Union Grove is a son of Dr. A. P. Adams, a man well and favorably known in the profession; he was one of the oldest settlers; located in Paris Township, fall of 1846, and at once entered into a large and lucrative practice; one of his first patients was a Mrs. Austin Dunham, of the first family that settled in Union Grove; he was born Dec. 15, 1795 - died June 8, 1869. His wife was Louisa Bush, a native of New York State, born 1796. Henry D. Adams attended Rush Medical College 1850-51 and 1851-52; graduated Feb. 19, 1852; he again attended course of lectures winter of 1855; was a guest of D. H. Lincoln while in Chicago - at that time the well known Prof. Brainard and N. S. Davis, M. D., were connected with Rush Medical College; Dr. Adams has a very extended practice. Married Priscilla Cadwell March 29, 1847; have had three children - Allison D., born Aug. 29, 1849; H. Kirke, Nov. 28, 1851; Ellie R., March 10, 1855. Allison is clergyman of a Congregational church in Nebraska; H. Kirke, teller Manufacturers' Bank, Racine; Ellie married Capt. Ben M. Frees, lumber merchant in Chicago. Mrs. Dr. Adams' father was E. S. Cadwell, native of New Hampshire; was an officer in war of 1812, and afterward a respected minister.

JOHN ADAMS, farmer; Sec. 22 P. O. Union Grove; born in Washington Co., N. Y., May 31, 1831; son of John W. Adams, a native of Ireland. Mr. W. J. Adams came to Racine Nov. 26, 1855; shortly after settled on 139 acres in Yorkville, and, through industry and frugality, now has 212 acres under good cultivation; has 140 sheep and fine cattle. Married Elizabeth McBeth, born May 19, 1842, and daughter of Alexander McBeth, one of the oldest and most respected settlers in this part of the country; he came here in 1843, when there were only a few log houses, scattered five or six miles apart, and no fences. They have had four children- John Alexander, born Oct. 16, 1874; Mary L., Feb. 16, 1876; Susan A., March 18, 1877; Nellie Elizabeth, Aug 24, 1878; Alexander B. Adams enlisted in Co. F., 2d Wisconsin Regt.; was with the Army of the Potomac in the Iron Brigade; served with bravery till he was honorably discharged - was wounded at battle of Gettysburg. Mr. Adams' father is living on same farm, and is 8O years old but is still vigorous, and has a very retentive memory.

A. L. BAKER, farmer, Sec. 34 P. O. Union Grove; born in Putnam Co., N. Y., town of Southeast, April 27, 1827, and came to Wisconsin with his parents in 1847; in 1849 settled on eighty acres in Yorkville, and through hard work and economy now has 160 acres under good cultivation. Married Mary Dorning, daughter of Jonathan Dorning, in 1851; have had seven children- Jonathan born Oct. 16, 1851, Joseph, Oct. 30, 1853; Lewis, June 13, 1857; Augusta, May 8, 1862; Samuel: Aug. 6, 1864; Francis, born July 24, 1871, and died Sept. 24, 1871; Minnie, born Sept. 81 1867. Mrs. Baker died Jan. 21, 1879. Jonathan, who was a member of a Missouri regiment during the war, and was wounded, died from the effects of this wound March 24, 1879. Mary Agnes, daughter of A. L. Baker, died April 20, 1879. Mr. Baker seems to have been allotted more than his share of sorrow.

ROYAL BEACH, farmer, Sec. 12; P. 0. Union Grove; born in Hampden Co, Mass., near Westfield, May 17, 1812; son of Norman Beach his grandfather was a soldier in the Revolutionary War, and his great grandfather was a goldsmith in Liverpool, England. Mr. Norman Beach died about 1877, aged 85 years. Royal Beach came to Yorkville spring of 1845, and settled on 134 acres, and has a fine farm under high state of cultivation. Married Mary Culver May 15, 1845, daughter of Titus Culver, who was of the old Puritan stock of Massachusetts. Have had two children - Adelbert, born Dec. 24, 1846; Cynthia, born July 24, 1852. Adelbert is now at home working the farm; Cynthia married Frank De Groat. Mr. Beach has been connected with School Board many terms, and through his industry has a fine residence, and is comfortably well off.

ALFRED L. BUCHAN, M. D., physician, Union Grove; born in town of Dover March 4, 1847 lived on the farm with his father, Edward Buchan, who is one of the oldest and most respected of the earliest settlers. Alfred attended college, at Monmouth, Ills., about 1865, and afterward graduated at Rush Medical College, Chicago, Feb. 1, 1871, practiced medicine a few years, and then went to Bellevue Medical College, New York, and graduated March 1, 1877; is a member of State Medical Society; has a large and growing practice.

MRS. CAROLINE CRABB, Union Grove; widow of Noah Crabb, a native of New York State. Mr. Crabb was born in Long Ridge, Conn.. and died March 9, 1878, at the age of 52; was extensively engagged in carriage manufacturing. They were married in August, 1860; have had three children, all living- Wm. and Minnie, born Sept. 14, 1864; Clifford, Aug. 29, 1877. Mrs. Crabb has a very pretty residence, situated upon Rose Hill, overlooking the grove. Mr. Crabb was a member of the Masonic Order, and belonged to the Temple of Honor.

THOS. DALE, farmer, Sec 27; P. O. Union Grove born in Cornwall, England, Oct. 9, 1819; son of Edward Dale, who was a farmer; they came to Yorkville, in 1842, and settled in Dover; in 1845, Mr. Thos. Dale settled on 160 acres in Yorkville, and now, through his frugality and industry, has 450 broad acres and a beautiful home. Married Ann M. Angear, May, 1846, a native of England, and daughter of J. W. Angear, who came from Plymouth, England, to Wisconsin, in 1845. Have had five children - James H., born Dec. 24, 1847; Alice M., Sept. 28, 1849; Edward, Nov. 25, 1852; Walter F., Dec. 6, 1856, Helena, May 31, 1863. Mrs. Dale's brothor was Post Surgeon at Ft. Pickens during the war. Mr. Dale's brother went into the war as Captain of Co. K, and was afterwards promoted to be Colonel of 2nd Wisconsin Cavalry; served with distinction, and died July, 1878, in Missouri.

JOSEPH DORNING, farmer; born in England, Nov. 9, 1837; son of Jonathan Dorning, who was a farmer in the old country, and came to Yorkville Township, in 1844, and settled on 640 acres near Windsor; he died, very suddenly, Feb. 8, 1853- was found dead in his stable. Joseph, soon after learned the blacksmith trade at Union Grove; afterward was at home for a while, then enlisted in the 2d Wisconsin Cavalry; served his time faithfully, and was honorably discharged. Married Mary E. Nugent, daughter of Mr. B. Nugent, one of the earliest settlers, Nov. 28, 1865; have had five children- Maggie, born Sept. 27, 1866; Florence, Oct. 25, 1868; Mary, June 11, 1871; James, Jan. 23, 1874; Samuel, Nov. 22, 1876. Mr. Dorning has been Clerk of the School Board several terms, and Town Treasurer. Mr. D's. brother, Samuel, died at Rolla, Mo., while a member of the 2d Wisconsin Cavalry; his brother John was also in the same regiment, and served his time out faithfully.

RICHARD GOLDSWORTHY, farmer, Sec. 31; P. O. Union Grove; born in England, County Cornwall, March, 1828; and came to Wisconsin with his father, Richard G., Sr., in 1842, who settled on 260 acres in the town or Paris. Richard Goldsworthy, senior, was a minister of the Wesleyan Methodist Church; was Justice of the Peace many terms, and died highly respected and much lamented. Richard, junior, has a fine farm of 120 acres, forty in Yorkville and eighty in town of Paris; has a pretty residence and good barns. In 1859, married Mary Russell have had five children, four living. Mr. Goldsworthy has been Clerk of School Board, and has held other offices many terms. Gave his aid and moral support to the loyal party during the war.

A. B. HAYES, farmer, Sec. 28; P. O. Union Grove; born in Westchester Co., West Farms, N. Y., June 11, 1838; his name was Abraham Bolton, but, at an early age he became one of the family of Mr. Jas. Hayes, and was afterward christened by that name; cameto Wisconsin with Mr. Hayes, June, 1846, when 8 years old, and was with him until he reached the age of 22, when he settled on eighty acres in Section. 33, Yorkville; shortly after, Mrs. Hayes came to live with her adopted son, and died Oct. 7, 1870, at the age of 70. Mr. A. B. Hayes married, on Jan. 1, 1860, Dorothy A. Yates, daughter of James Yates, of Yorkville; have had eight children- Martha, born July 9, 1862; James, Nov. 9, 1863; Louisa, Feb. 3, 1865; William, Jan. 11, 1867; Dougherty, May 22, 1868, and died Sept. 5, 1869; Elizabeth, born July 8, 1870; Charles, Feb. 26, 1872; Robert, June 12, 1874. Mr. Hayes is a self-made man, and deserves credit for the position he now holds. He has a fine farm of 270 acres and a comfortable home. Mr. Hayes has been Town Assessor two terms, and he is now in his second term of the Chairmanship of the Town Board. Mr. Hayes will be 41 years old June 11. His farm is now provided with improved stock.

DAVID HOLMES, farmer, Sec. 36; P. O. Sylvania; born in Portsmouth, N. H., in 1814; he came West, in 1842, and purchased 372 acres of land, in what is now Yorkville Township, Racine Co.; returning East, he remained in Massachusetts until May, 1852, when he again came West, and settled on the farm he had previously bought, where he has since remained. He married, in Massachusetts, May 1, 1852, Miss Sarah K. Proctor, a native of New Hampshire. Mr. Holmes has one son living- Frank E., born Sept. 22, 1858; one child died in infancy. Mr. Holmes owns 510 acres of land.

MRS. MARY LINCOLN, Union Grove; widow of Fordyce T. Lincoln, who was born in Worcester Co., Mass., 1803, and died Feb. 22, 1872; Mrs. Lincoln was Mary D. Purves, a native of Scotland, and was born in 1805, and married Jan. 25, 1819 (Burns' birthday); have had nine children, three living-- Edward, born 1832; David, 1834, and Henry, 1836 George, a son of fine promise, enlisted in the 2d Wis., Co. F, was killed at the battle of Winchester; he was a brave soldier; was the color-bearer, and died nobly doing his duty. Mr. Lincoln, with his wife, came to Wisconsin among the first, and bought 165 acres of land; they suffered many hardships, but, through industry and perseverance, they accumulated a competence; a son, David Lincoln, is a very successful commission merchant of Chicago, and has held the honorable position of President of the Board of Trade.

PRISCILLA MARTIN Sec. 20, P. O. Union Grove; widow of James Martin, who died Oct. 25, 1875; he was born in Cornwall, England, September, 1811; he came to Wisconsin in 1841. Married July 5, 1847, in Yorkville. He bought, about this time, 120 acres of land; he was a saving, hard-working man, and his wife was a faithful helpmeet; they toiled many years together, and accumulated enough of this world's goods to carry them comfortably through life; he died much respected and beloved. John Martin, a nephew, came here in 1869, and is now running the farm; married Helen Munroe, March 29, 1876; have one child- James M., born Aug. 24, 1877.

REV. J. H. MORROW, Union Grove; born in Armstrong Co., Penn., Jan. 19, 1839; entered Westminster College March, 1856; in 1861, enlisted in 2d Penn. Cav., and served with credit till close of war; was honorably discharged July, 1865; was with the Army of the Potomac, and took part in nearly all the battles they participated in; was Sergeant, and afterward Lieutenant; again entered Westminster College, and graduated June, 1868; then went to United Presbyterian Seminary at Allegheny, Penn.; subsequently acted as missionary in Tennessee, Illinois and Michigan, and finally settled in Union Grove in 1874, and is now Pastor of the U. P. Church. Married June 10, 1875, Mary J. Love, from Rochester, N. Y.; have one child- Emma L., born Feb. 26, 1876. Mr. Morrow has a handsome residence and a prosperous parish.

DONALD MUNROE, farmer, Sec. 19; P. O. Union Grove; born in Rosshire, Scotland, in 1813; came to New York City in 1836; worked there, and in Ottawa, Ill., at stonecutting for about three years; came to Racine in 1839; bought 160 acres in Yorkville; afterward came to present location and settled on 160 acres; through industry and frugality has a comfortable home, good farm and competency. Married in 1844, in Scotland; have had eight children, six living- William, Isabella, Christiana, Helen, Henry and Mark; John and David died; William is a civil engineer in Colorado. Mr. Munroe and wife are members of the U. P. Church.

SARAH NAYLOR, Sec. 34; P. O. Union Grove; widow of Joseph Naylor, who was born in Lancashire, England, in 1837; Married Oct. 14, 1860; has had seven children- Esther, born Oct, 23, 1861; Susan J., Aug. 22, 1863; Emma, May 20, 1865; William, May 28, 1867; George, Jan. 29, 1869; Maggie, Aug. 6, 1871; Joseph, Dec. 20, 1872; they were married in Racine, by Dr. Parks, Rector Episcopal Church. Mr. Naylor died June 11, 1875; was much respected and beloved by all who knew him. Mrs. Naylor's maiden name was Henderson; she was a native of Ireland. She has a pleasant home, and her husband left her in comfortable circumstances.

IRA. H. NOBLE, farmer, Sec. 1; P. O. Ives Grove; born in Greene Co., N. Y.,; was at one time a resident of New York City, where his father was the largest milk dealer at an early day; came to Racine Co. in May, 1845, and bought 160 acres of land, and, through industry and frugality, has now 245 acres under good cultivation; one of the best farms in the county; has been extensively engaged in raising stock. Married Fannie M. Hervey, daughter of Rev. Herman Hervey, Oct. 10, 1843; Mrs. Noble was the first school-teacber in this county, and through her kindly influence and good Christian example, has been the means of doing much good. Their first plow was purchased with the proceeds of her teaching. Mr. N. has been Justice of the Peace and School Commissioner a number of terms. Members of the Baptist Church.

FRANCES POWLES, farmer, Sec. 30; P. O. Union Grove; widow of John Powles, who was born in Wales, May 12, 1838, and died Dec. 30, 1877; he was a brave soldier in the late war, serving his time faithfully in the 22d Wisconsin regiment; he was a mason by trade, worked on the capitol at Madison, also on Congregational Church, in Union Grove; was a respected man, and left his family well provided for. He married Francis Damon Dec. 19, 1865; she has had four children, three living- William C., born March 6, 1867, Lena, June 19, 1868, Harley, Sept. 28, 1872, and died, June 22, 1874; Nellie, born March 20, 1876. Mrs. Powles has a comfortable home and a farm of eighty acres. Member of Congregational Church; her grandfather was Captain in the Revolutionary war.

JOHN PRICE, capitalist, Union Grove; was born in England, near Kent, March, 1808; came to Ohio in 1841; was sick there ten months; upon recovering, returned to England, and in 1850, again returned to this country, locating in Kenosha Co., and bought farm of 200 acres near Paris Corners; came to Union Grove, in 1863; has been extensively engaged in buying grain, and through industry and good judgment, has accumulated wealth. Married Martha Bowen, in 1833; have had seven children, four living. Has held numerous offices; was one of the founders of the Union Grove Company. Is a member of the Congregational Church.

MRS. ISABELLA ROBERTSON, Union Grove; widow of William Robertson; Wm. Robertson was born at Portobello, near Edinburgh, Scotland. Married Isabella Saunders, in Racine Co., 1832; he went to Norway Township and settled on 160 acres in 1836, and, through his industry, gained a comfortable home. He died, Jan. 14, 1873; was much respected and beloved, and left his wife in good circumstances, Mr. Robertson was a member in good standing of the Scotch Presbyterian Church; Mrs. Robertson is a member of the U. P. Church, Rev. J. H. Morrow, Pastor.

JAMES RUSSELL, Union Grove; born in Cornwall, England, Sept. 16, 1816; came to Paris, Kenosha Co., June 4, 1842, and located on 320 acres of land; at that time there were very few settlers; game was abundant; wolves were near neighbors; only one house in Union Grove. Mr. Russell met with a sad accident. Oct. 5, 1861; he was blasting rock, when a premature discharge of powder destroyed his eyesight. He sold his farm in 1869 and came to Union Grove, fall of 1870; has a comfortable home and a competency. Married Mary Ann Goldsworthy, March 15, 1842, in England; she died Jan. 24, 1865, at the age of 45. Have had five children, four living - Mary D., Susan, James and Richard; Charlotte died Oct. 13, 1870. James was a member of the Wisconsin Heavy Artillery, and served his time faithfully till close of war. Mr. Russell was Chairman of Town Board, many years, and is now President of the Union Grove Company.

CHARLES SCOFIELD, Union Grove; born in Stamford, Fairfield Co., Conn., Jan. 2, 1809; came to Wisconsin in 1838; was first in Racine, several months; he came around the lakes by steamer Jefferson, with his father, thirteen of the family, came at that time; his father settled on three quarter-sections of land, in Yorkville; after a time, Charles Scofield became the owner of 330 acres, and remained looking after this interest, till Nov., 1876, when he came to Union Grove, where he now has a fine residence and a competency. Married, Sept. 4, 1831, Sallie H. Dibble; have had two children- Simeon, born 1832, Mary Ann, 1834. Mr. Scofield has been Road Commissoner and Constable many terms; member M. E. Church.

WILLIAM SCUTT, farmer, Sec. 18; P. O. Union Grove; born in Yorkshire, England, May 24, 1813; son of Wm. Scutt, Sr., a well-to-do and much respected farmer in the old country. Mr. and Mrs. Scutt, Jr., landed in New York, April 8, 1834; in 1839, moved to Southern Illinois, Macoupin Co., and settled on 160 acres; moved to Racine about 1853, and went into general trading business- pork packing, and largely engaged in buying and selling grain; went to Yorkville, in 1858, purchased 170 acres, where he has been located since; has a fine farm, under the best of cultivation. Married in Victor, Ontario Co., N. Y., March 28, 1838, Elvira R. Bement; have had six children, four living- George E., born July 3, 1839, died July 11, 1841, Hannah M., born July 25, 1850, died July 16, 1851, Mary Ann, born May 14, 1842, Edward B., July 22, 1844, Charles W., Nov. 18, 1847, Alice, May 31, 1853. Edwin B., enlisted in 22d Wisconsin Reg. V. I., and served his time faithfully, and was honorably discharged; was prisoner at Libby, and went through with Sherman to the sea; resided temporarily in Illinois. Charles W., now works the farm; Mr. and Mrs. Scutt have crossed the ocean nine times.

SAMUEL H. SKEWES, merchant, Union Grove; born in Cornwall, England, in 1917; came to Milwaukee in 1842, to Yorkville, Nov. 9, 1842. Married in Cornwall, England, April 16, 1842, Mary Thomas, then a resident of Cornwall; when he first came to Yorkville, he was carpenter and builder by trade, and had worked in Milwaukee for Mr. Church, a contractor and builder; he followed his trade here for fifteen years until 1857, and then engaged in farming; was appointed Agent and Trustee of the Union Grove Land Co., for the sale of land owned by them, and for the last five years, has been engaged in the agricultural machinery business. Mr. Skewes was one of the first settlers of this town; when he came here there was only a shanty sixteen feet square in the whole village, which shanty has stood a relic of old times until the 12th of April, 1879, when it burned down, with several other stores and dwellings. His wife died in May, 1865, and is buried in Yorkville. He married again in Lyons, Iowa, in December, 1873, Caroline Goldsworthy, a resident of Yorkville; she also died, Dec. 29, 1876, and is buried in Yorkville; has two children- Ella and Howard. Ella married, in 1873, Frank Adams, of Paris, Wis.

JOHN SUMPTER, farmer and mill owner, Union Grove; born in Lincolnshire, England, April 26, 1818; left England in 1854, and came to Yorkville, landed at Racine, June 2, 1854; family came in 1856 ; was first at Liberty Corners, then went to Dover, thence to Brighton; afterward, settled on 240 acres in Yorkville; bought a farm of 204 acres in Dover, in 1867; afterward went to Eagle Lake, and finally settled in Union Grove, in April, 1874; now has a comfortable home and 57 acres in Yorkville, and 200 acres in Dover. He and his sons are extensively engaged in flour-milling. Married Mary Ann Cheeseman, Aug. 12, 1841, aged 20 years and 5 months; their children are- Mary Ann, born in England April 23, 1842; Bartholemew, in England, in October, 1843: John, Jr., in England, Jan. 4,1845; Fanny, Oct. 6. 1847; James, June 24, 1848; William, Aug. 1, 1851; Alfred, Oct. 16, 1853; Bartholomew died in England, in December, 1844; Edwin, born in Dover, Wis., Dec. 31, 1856; Samuel, Oct. 15, 1858; George H., Nov. 24, 1860; Emma L., Sept. 8, 1862; Alexander, Sept. 6, 1864; buried James Sumpter, May 26, 1874.

JOHN WADSWORTH, retired farmer, Union Grove; born in Yorkshire, England, July 28, 1826; commenced the battle of life at the age of 6 years; was a weaver, and afterward a wool-comber; His evenings were spent in study; after seven years of service in a woolen factory, he drove stage two years, and in 1849, came to Southport (now Kenosha), and worked four years on the farm of Mr. Leach. He married, Dec. 1, 1852, Rebecca Blackie; have had three children- J. Whitley, born Nov. 13, 1853; Thomas H., Oct. 23, 1855; Mary A., July 27, 1857. After marriage, Mr. Wadsworth bought 120 acres in Brighton; after three years, went to Sec. 1, same town, and bought 160 acres; was there piuetepn years; came to Union Grove in February, 1878; is now retired in comfortable, circumstances, and is reaping the benefit of his industry; has a pretty residence on Rose Hill. Members of the Congregational Church.

HENRY WIESNANN, attorney at law; born in Prussia in 1839; came to America with his parents in 1847, and located in Brighton, Kenosha Co., where he has resided since; he obtained a common school education through his own efforts, not having the advantagesw to be obtained now. In 1862, was elected District Clerk of his school district, which he held until 1871; then was elected Treasurer, which he held until 1875; in 1862, he was elected Justice of the Peace, which office he held until 1871, doing a large amount of business- nearly all of the business of the western part of the county; he held the office of Assessor for one term; was elected Town Clerk in 1867, which office be held until 1870; has been Notary Public since 1873. During these years, Mr. Wiesmann was also studying law; in 1872, he entered the State University of Madison, Wis., and, after a course of studies, graduated and was admitted to the bar in 1873, since has been engaged in practicing law in Racine and Kenosha Counties; has won a reputation worthy of his efforts, and is known as a rising young lawyer. In 1876, he was a candidate for District Attorney of Kenosha Co. on the Democratic ticket. He has a law office at Union Grove, Racine Co., and also at Brighton, Kenosha Co., Wis.

JOHN H. YOUNG, painter, Union Grove; born in Holland, Oct. 7, 1815; came to Albany in 1847; was there four years working at his trade; afterward went to Ohio in 1851; was there till 1865, and came to Union Grove the same year; has now a pleasant home, and plenty of means through his industry. He married Maria Young, May 27, 1838, in Holland; have had eight children- only three living- Maggie, was born April 20, 1839; Clara, the 10th of April, 1841 (and died Aug. 10, 1878); Jacob, the 22d of June, 1843 (and died in Albany, the 22d of April, 1848); Peter, March 14th, 1847 (and died Sept. 4, 1847, at Albany); J. W., Nov, 5, 1849 (died July 15, 1851); Mary, Nov. 18, 1852; Roseana, Oct. 4, 1857 (and died May 11, 1861, in Ohio); Jacob W., Oct. 4, 1857, and is now living New York. Mr. John H. Young enlisted in the 100th Ohio V. I., and served his time faithfully; in the Commissary Department part of the time; was under Gen. Fry, in the Army of the Tennessee.

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