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Part 3 - Extracts from "An Illustrated Historical Atlas of LaPorte County, Indiana"

Compiled, Drawn and Published from Personal Examinations and Surveys by Higgins, Belden and Co., Chicago, 1874.

(Transcribed by T.C. Wyman, August 2000.)

Go To Part 2 of this Article.

JOHN CLARK is a native of Erie County, Penn., and was born November 22, 1822. His paternal ancestor was from Scotland, and his maternal from Ireland. They came to America sometime previous to the Revolutionary war, and were active participants in that memorable uprising for independence and nationality. After the achievement of our liberties, they settled in the State of New York, and engaged in agriculture.

During the war of 1812, his father entered the army and contended for "free trade and sailor's rights", and at the return of peace, he became a pioneer of Erie County, Penn. He married Mary Furguson, and had ten children, viz.: William J., Isabel, Martha, George W., Mary J., Lemira, John, Lafayette, Esther A.; and Myron H., seven of whom are living - two in Iowa, one in Missouri, one in Kansas, and two in Indiana.

Mr. Clark spent his youth, till twelve or thirteen years of age, in Erie County, attending school and aiding his father on the farm. In the Fall of 1834, he moved with his father to Clinton Township, Laporte County, Ind., and bought land at the land sales, and thus secured about 300 acres.

These "land sales" were held at Laporte, and were frequently quite lively when speculators undertook to bid on squatters' claims. A meeting of the settlers was called, and Andrew Burnside was appointed leader, and a committee of one, with aids if necessary, "to go for" every speculator who offered to purchase a settler's claim.

Mr. Clark married, first, Adaline Wright, and by her had Eudorus, who died young; America A., Jeduthan D., Gary M., William and Garland - both died young - Elizabeth E., and John S.

Mrs. Clark died February 13, 1866, and is buried at Union Chapel.

Mr. Clark married, secondly, Lucy Simpson, and by her has Isabel and an infant not named. He sows about 100 acres of wheat annually, and plants an equal amount of corn.

JOSEPH McLELLAN was born in New Hampshire, February 12, 1811. His father was a Scotchman and his mother an American of English origin. He immigrated to America before the Revolution, and settled in Grafton County, N. H., where he lived to a good old age, engaged in farming, and died about 1818. His name was John, and he married Dolly Varnum, of New Hampshire, and had fourteen children, as follows: Elizabeth, Dolly, Moses, (killed by the falling of a tree), Aaron, Daniel, Rebecca, John, William, Sarah, Hannah, Duncan, Joseph and Benjamin. There was a Mary, who died young.

The three youngest sons moved west, but the rest remained in New England, married, and had families.

In May, 1832, Mr. McLellan started for the "West," to seek his fortune. Traveled by stage to Burlington, Vt.; thence by steamboat to Whitehall, N. Y.; thence by canal-boat to Troy, on North River; thence by the Erie Canal to Buffalo. Here he took passage on the steamer Enterprise up Lake Erie to Detroit; thence to Saginaw, by stage about half-way, and on foot, by way of the Indian trail, to visit his brother Duncan, who was at that time residing at Saginaw, Mich. There had been an Indian fort, at this place, but it was deserted.

In June he went to Monroe on the River Raisin, thence to Tecumseh, Jonesville and White Pigeon, reaching the latter place in September. These were all small villages, just located at that time, and contained but a small population.

The year 1832 was noted for the cholera, which broke out on the lakes, among Gen. Scott's troops, and the Black Hawk war.

Mr. McLellan remained about two years at White Pigeon, Mich., and in April, 1834, he arrived in Laporte County, Ind., and took up lands in Coolspring Township.

In 1839 he purchased 200 acres, with no improvements, on Section 17 in Scipio Township, and has since added to it until his homestead farm contains 340 acres. He erected a house, barn and other buildings, and has lived there ever since. His state and county tax in 1836 was $2; in 1873, it was $266.

In March, 1835, he married Fidelia, daughter of Belding Read, of White Pigeon, Mich. Her ancestors were of Scotch descent. They have had seven children, as follows: 1. Andrew, married Alice, daughter of the Hon. George Crawford, and has Eddy F., William F., Carrie, Annie and Alice. Resides in Scipio Township.
2. Sarah J., not living.
3. Belding, married Rebecca Reed, and has Minnie and Effie. Resides in Jasper County, Iowa. He was in the Fourth Indiana Battery during the Rebellion, and had his leg broken in battle.
4. George W., married Melinda Shead, and has Eva, Joseph W., and Ona. He is a farmer. Resides in Laporte County. Was in the Union army - 128th Indiana Volunteers - in the Rebellion.
5. John W., married Huldah Forbes. He is an artist, and resides in Valparaiso, Ind.
6. Mary, married Charles McClure. He is a merchant, and resides at Westville, Ind.
7. Martha, married George Reed. Resides in Laporte Co.

Mr. McLellan is one of our most successful and substantial farmers, noted for his moral worth and sterling integrity.

HON. JAMES FORRESTER was born in County Roscommon, Ireland; landed in New York, Aug. 1818; lived there until Jan. 1826, when he had accumulated about $400; bought drygoods and commenced peddling. In 1830 visited Ireland. In 1831 bought goods in New York, shipped them to Detroit - bought a horse and wagon - traveled as far as Ottawa, Ill. In 1833, went to Buffalo, chartered a vessel, and took the first cargo of salt, coffee, sugar, glass, iron, etc., to Michigan City. Bought land, and in 1834 commenced trade in Michigan City. In 1836 sold his interest, and in 1837 settled on the farm where he now lives. Like most of his countrymen, he brought nothing to this country but his youth and health. The Lord favored him with a good constitution, and common sense to take care of it.

He is now married to his second wife, whose maiden name was Lavina White, and has had seven children - four living - Peter, Margaret, Lavina and Edward.

In 1828 he swore allegiance to our Government, voted the Democratic ticket until 1861, and then thought it his interest and duty to give his voice, vote and means to crush the Rebellion. No act of his life is he prouder of. For this the people of his county thought proper to elect him a member of the State Legislature.

He considers this the best poor man's government on earth. It is a matter of surprise to him that so many Americans never get an interest in the soil, when it is so easy to be obtained.

PHINEAS SMALL was born in 1805 in South Carolina. At three years of age went to North Carolina, thence to Wayne County, Ind., where he resided until he was 20; thence to Montgomery County, and six years thereafter, on horseback, to Michigan City, where he purchased a lot, built a house, sold it, and in the Fall of 1834 moved to Clinton Township, Laporte County.

Here he purchased 160 acres, erected a cabin, and commenced to make him a home, a lithograph of which may be seen in another part of this work.
(Transcriber's note: At this time, I do not have the picture noted here).

He married, June 25, 1840, Mary Pinney, of Ohio. Her father, Horace, was from Connecticut, and her mother, Nancy (Snavley) from Virginia.

Mr. Small's ancestors are of English descent, and his grandfather was killed in battle at the beginning of the Revolutionary War.

Mr. and Mrs. Small have eight children:
1. Louis{e?} S. married Elijah Reynolds, and has Eudoras, Phineas, Orlando and Frank.
2. Nancy J. married Emery Zenar, and has Mary L., Susan, and Dallas.
3. Eunice L. married Dallas Hascall, and has Arthur, Estella and Luella.
4. Orlando V. married Agnes Freanor; resides in Kansas.
5. Riley F.
6. Harrison P. 7. Henderson T. (Twins).
8. Phineas O.

Mr. Small is one of our substantial farmers, and has the respect and confidence of the community. He is a friend of schools and education, and his sons and daughters are permitted to enjoy the best advantages.

HENRY P. CRANE was born January 15, 1819, in Virginia. His grandfather came from England previous to the Revolution, and was a soldier under Washington. His great uncle was captured by the Indians, while passing through the woods, and bound, for burning. Findiog a bottle of brandy, they became intoxicated. He released himself, and killed all six of them, and escaped, carrying his gun and the head of one of the Indians back to his regiment.

Mr. C. moved with his parents to Elkhart Co., Ind. in 1830; thence to Laporte, 1834, and settled on Section 8, where he still resides. He first married Mary Closser; secondly, Mary Keith, and has Nancy M. and Bolsar T.

JOHN GOLDSMITH was born in Richland, Ohio May 9, 1824. His ancestors were of Scotch-Irish descent, and were related to the distinguished Oliver Goldsmith. His grandparents came to America previous to the Revolution, and participated in that war. His father married Miriam Garton, and had John, Mercy A., Ruth, Richard, and Coleman (dead); the rest live in Noble.

Mr. Goldsmith spent his youth in the common schools of Ohio, and in aiding his father on the farm. In 1834 (year of the land sales) he moved with his father to Laporte County, and settled in Noble Township, where he owns a farm of ninety acres.

MARQUIS D. GARDNER came to Laporte County, October 7, 1847, with his parents, and settled on Section 31, Clinton Township, where he still resides. He was born April 13, 1829, in Smyrnia, Chenango Co., N.Y., and spent his youth until seventeen years of age on the farm and in the common schools of New York. His great grandparents were natives of Massachusetts.

Mr. Gardner married, November 25, 1851, Charlotte, daughter of Gideon and Margaret (Wright) Long. She is a native of Jackson County, Va., and came to this county with her parents in 1834. Her father was in the War of 1812, and both ancestors were in the Revolutionary War.

Mr. and Mrs. Gardner have three children: Oretha A., Charlotte I. and Allard E.

Mr. G. is the owner of a good library, composed of books of travel, biography, general history, works which are calculated to form character and give an impetus to healthy reading.

His farm of 160 acres - which he has rescued from the barrens is an excellent one. Wheat, oats, corn, garden sauce, fruit and berries, are abundant. This section compares well with the prairie lands, and (with the exception of the wet seasons) is not excelled in any kind of crop. He sows anually 40 acres of wheat, 30 of corn, and has raised over 100 bushels of potatoes to the acre.

ALBERT W. COLE, the son of John W. Cole, one of the early settlers, and a member of the first grand jury of the county, was born in New Durham Township, May 13, 1837. His mother's maiden name was Eliza Payne, of Genesee County, N.Y.

They came to Laporte County about 1832. The family cosisted of John A., Albert W., Eliza W., Henry P., and Sarah C., all now living in Indiana.

Albert W. married Mary A., daughter of Hon. George Crawford, and has two children: Charles W. and Walter C.

Mr. Cole is a farmer and stock dealer, and has one of the farms on Door Prairie. He and his wife are active workers the Sunday School and temperance cause, and are members of the M.E. Church.

RICHARD HENRY WILKINSON was born near Warrenton, Fauquier County, Va., May 1810. His father, John Wilkinson, left his home in northern England about the year _____. Coming to America, he settled in Virginia, where he married Miss Mary Neal, who was a second cousin of Joseph C. and Alice B. Neal, for many years editors of the Saturday Gazette Henry was the fifth child of this couple, was educated for the ministry, and came to Indiana in the year 1833, stopping at Charlestown, in Clark County, near the Ohio river. In 1835 he married Miss Julia A. Henley, sister of Hon. Thomas J. Henley, who for several terms represented his district in the Legislature of Indiana, and afterwards served two terms in the United States Congress.

In the Autumn of 1837 Mr. Wilkinson removed to Laporte County, purchasing the home where he still resides. Obtaining a license to preach, he was for a time engaged in spreading the gospel, in accordance with the Methodist Episcopal creed, through the counties of Laporte, St. Joseph and Elkhart. The profession was abandoned for the more healthful life of a farmer. His family at present consists of himself, wife and six children, the two oldest of whom have married and settled in Illinois. Their names are Cora M., Harriet E., William H., Cecilia E., Theopolis H., and Mrs. Lucinda A. Baum.

EDMUND S. ORGAN was born in Campbell County, Virginia, July 2, 1813. His ancestors came to America previous to the Revolution and settled in Maryland. They subsequently moved to Virginia while Mr. Organ's father was a boy. His father was a farmer who married Elizabeth Johnson, and had William, James, John, Samuel, Holcomb, Edmond S., Henry A., Cornelius, and Mary.

Mr. Organ, the subject of this sketch, married Catherine N. Early, daughter of Jacob, an old settler in Laporte County (1835), and has had ten children: Mary (died), Ellen, Alice, Doshea, Fanny, Catherine (died), Nettie, Lucy, Cora, and Walter. Mr. Organ moved to Laporte County in 1836, and settled in Laporte as a clerk in Jacob Early's store. He remained in that town ten or eleven years, and then settled on Section 28 in Springfield Township.

In 1852 he was appointed and elected county treasurer, and served five years. He engaged in the mercantile business, and in buying and selling land for two or three years, and in the lumber business and farming.

His brothers Samuel and Henry A. came to Laporte in 1837, and engaged in the cattle, produce, and grocery business and merchandising. They both died in Laporte, leaving families, and are interned in Patton's Cemetery.

GEORGE W. REYNOLDS, the son of Abram and Mary (Billington) Reynolds, was born in Oneida County, New York, December 19, 1814.

He is of Scotch and English descent. His mother's ancestor came with the Pilgrims into Massachusetts. His grandfather's name was Reuben, and his grandmother's Lydia VanTile. Mr. Reynolds married June 23, 1836, Cynthia, daughter of Judge John Winchell. Her descent is as follows: Tradition says Robert Winchell came from England - perhaps Wales - landed in Dorchester, Mass. in 1634; in Windsor, Conn., 1635; died January 21, 1669. He had a son Nathaniel (married Sarah Porter), who had a son Nathaniel (married Mary Graves), who had a son Nathaniel (married Abigail Ruggles), who had a son Benjamin (married Miss _____), who had a son Robert R. (married Martha Hubbard), who had a son, John (married Amy Barney), who had a daughter Cynthia who married George N. Reynolds, and their family is as follows:

(Transcribers note: Unsure whether George Reynolds middle initial is W. or N., as both initials are used in the text).

1. Emerette, married Daniel P. Grover, has Carrie.
2. Calista, unmarried.
3. Julia, married Arba Kimball, has George I.
4. Herman P., married Elizabeth Dorland, has Elberta.

Mrs. Reynolds father built the first house on White Pigeon Prairie, about 1825, and donated the land for the graveyard and Church at Kingsbury.

Mr. Reynolds is a carpenter and joiner and farmer, has been justice of the peace seventeen years, and resides at Kingsbury, Indiana.

HON. GEORGE CRAWFORD is of Scotch descent, in both the paternal and maternal line. His grandfather was a native of Ayr, the home of Burns, and was a lineal descendant of the Earl of Crawford. He was engaged as a linen draper in Belfast, Ireland, and dealt largely with the British colonies in America. The company having large amounts outstanding in the colonies, and forecasting the Revolution, he was sent to America to collect the debts which were due them. While here, engaged in the business of collecting, he found the people greatly agitated: the mutterings of the thunders of the approaching storm were distinctly heard. Finally the Revolution broke out, and during that terrible struggle he was unable to collect but little.

On the issue of the old continental money many of his creditors availed themselves of the opportunity of canceling their obligations with this currency. A large trunk was filled with this worthless money. Their trade had extended from Boston, Mass. to Charleston, South Carolina, and amounted to a million of dollars. Efforts were made at the conclusion of peace to secure these demands. Alexander Hamilton was in favor of the payment, not only of public debts, but also of all domestic obligations; but while the former prevailed, the latter miscarried.

Having been the senior partner, and feeling that the heavy losses in America were, in a measure, the result of his plans, he declined the invitation to return and take charge of affairs at home, and remained in America, stopping at first in Philadelphia, and afterwards, settled in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. His wife joined him here, having crossed the Atlantic at his request; and he, after resigning all his private property in the Old World, gave up the idea of ever returning to the land that gave him birth. Thus he became the founder of the Crawford family in America, and from whom have descended some very worthy citizens in both the private and public walks of life.

He was twice married. His first wife's maiden name in not distinctly remembered, but is thought to be Hartford. The family was as follows:


Mr. ______ Crawford and Miss ______ Hartford - Parents.

Children by First Wife.
1. John, never married.
2. Andrew, married and lived in Virginia, and left a family.
3. William, married Eleanor Frazer, a relative of Gen. Frazer of Saratoga fame. (These are the parents of the subject of this sketch.)
4. Joanna, married a sea captain.
5. Catherine, married a Johnson and resided in Lancaster Co., Penn.

Mr. Crawford married secondly Anna Burch, and had seven sons, as follows:
Mr. Crawford and Anna Burch - parents.

6. Edward, married and has a family. He is still living in Lancaster Co., Penn.
7. George, became a sea captain and was lost at sea.
8. Walter, went to the "Nortwest Territory", to Steubenville, Ohio, to St. Louis, Mo., and finally returned to Steubenville, married, and died leaving a family.
9. Carlysle, married, and has two sons and three daughters; resides in Jefferson Co., Ohio.
10. Henry, married, and has a family, some of whom reside in Illinois. He resides in Lancaster Co., Penn.
11. Theophilus, married, and resides in Lancaster Co., Penn.
12. Samuel, married, and had a family. He became a Methodist preacher and died in the city of Lancaster, Penn.

Col. Crawford, who was burned by the Indians, was of the original stock.


William Crawford, the father of the subject of this sketch, was born in County Down, Ireland, and after peace was proclaimed between Great Britain and the United States, at Paris, came to America and settled in Lancaster County, Penn. He was about twenty-two years of age when he arrived in the United States. The "Whisky Rebellion" breaking out some time afterwards, he enlisted in that enterprise, and was elected Orderly Sergeant, but after a brief and unsuccessful expedition, returned home.

He subsequently married - about the year 1795 - Miss Frazer, whose father had previously come from County Donegall, Ireland, and had settled in that vicinity. Their family is as follows:

William Crawford and Miss ____ Frazer - Parents.


1. John, went South, and resided near Vicksburg, Miss. He married and had a family - two daughters. One married a Hutchinson, and the other General Lucket.
2. George, married Hannah Ann Beardsley, daughter of Ezra and Nancy (Brissh) Beardsley, grand daughter of Elijah Beardsley. (See Elkhart Co., Ind. Atlas, p. 49).
3. James, married and resided in Tenn.; died at Warsaw.
4. Hannah, married Mr. Blackburn, and has a family; resides in Knox County, Ohio. Two of his sons were in the Union army.
5. Margery, married Hiram Willoman, and has a family; they reside in Davis County, Indiana.
6. Elizabeth, married Eli Willoman, has a family of two sons, both of whom were in the Union army. They reside in Carroll County, Ohio.
7. Jane W., married Elias Armor, and has a family; one of her sons was in the Union army. They reside in Cumberland County, Illinois.
8. Eleanor, married J.R. Robey, has a family; two of her sons were in the Union army, died on Cheat Mountain. They reside in Pulaski County, Indiana.

The Rebellion found the different members of these families in opposite armies.


George Crawford, the subject of this sketch, married Hannah A. Beardsley, and his family is as follows:

George Crawford and Hannah A. Beardsley - Parents.


1. Alice, married Andrew McLellan, and has Eddy T., William F., Carrie E., Anna F., and Bertha A. He is a farmer and resides in Laporte County.
2. Henry, married Susan Shafer, and has Walter, Arthur, Alice and Nora. They reside in Benton County, Iowa.
3. James Frazer, married Margaret Spurgen, and has Navada, George, Eddie, Clara, Charles, and Elmer; resides in Benton County, Iowa.
4. William, is engaged in the coal mines at Evanston, Wyoming Territory.
5. Mary A., married Albert W. Cole, and has Charles N. and Walter C.
6. Martha Ellen, resides with her father.
7. George Edwin, is engaged in cattle raising in Nebraska.
8. Ezra John, resides in Nebraska.
9. Charles B., engaged in the coal mines at Evanston, Wyoming.
10. Lewis Alexander, and
11. Laura Augusta, reside with their father.

George Crawford was born Oct. 30, 1799, at Chestnut Level, Lancaster County, Pa. His school advantages were limited to the common schools of Pennsylvania. During his minority, he aided his father on the farm, and also in the linen draper business. At the age of seven he came to Jefferson County, Ohio, where he remained till he reached his majority, and in the Spring of 1820, he attached himself to a surveying party going to the Saginaw country, in the Territory of Michigan, under the direction of Joseph Wample, of Steubenville, Ohio.

He continued in that business through the various parts of the territory and Northern Indiana until 1832. He was with a son of Judge Sibley a part of the time, and also with Gen. Lyon, and for four years, he was on his own responsibility.

In the Spring of 1828 he made arrangements to engage in farming, and secured a quarter section in Cass County, Mich. While here, he made the acquaintance of George and Sylvester Meacham, and of Gen. Brown, brother of the hero of Lundy's Lane. In the Fall of 1828 he went to the mouth of the Elkhart River, and where the Christiana Creek debouches into the St. Joseph River, he made a beginning. While here, he received a visit from Maj. J.W. Violett and Mr. Bishop, who were making a tour of exploration. At this time there were but six families in this vicinity, viz: Andrew Naufsinger, on the north side of the river; Jesse Rush, on the plain south of the river; Jesse and William Skinner, John Nickerson (his wife is the Widow Wogomon of Goshen), and Joseph Coe. One, Perry, stopped awhile, also Adam Teal, later in the year, but they soon left.

Mr. Crawford received his information concerning the country from the Rev. Isaac McCoy, who commenced the "Carey Mission" in 1822, and while in the northern part of the territory, he fell in with the Rev. Mr. Hudson, who had been sent to the Saginaw country to establish a missionary station, but being disappointed, he was induced by Mr. Crawford to send his contribution to the "Carey Mission", and in consequence of this timely aid, the position was held. There was a monthly express between Detroit and Carey Mission at this time. Rev. McCoy was a Baptist, and Mrs. Judge Niles of Laporte, is his niece.

Mr. Crawford built a grist mill at the mouth of Christiana Creek in 1829, and employed in its erection Chester Sage, who was seeking a defaulter from the State of New York. In this year, unsolicited from Gov. Cass, he was appointed Sheriff of Cass County, Michigan. The establishment of the boundary between the states left him in Indiana, and he was appointed Postmaster at Pulaski (as Elkhart was then called), and on the organization of Elkhart County, he was appointed County Surveyor and Commissioner of the Three per cent Fund.

February, 1829, he put up his first dwelling, and in company with Sage, opened a farm of 200 acres on Section 4, Concord Township, south of the river. An Indian war chief, Benneck by name, claimed the land, but they held it for two years, and it was finally purchased by Stephen Downing.

In 1832 he was elected to the Legislature of Indiana, and served one term, and in 1836 was elected to the Senate for three years, and 1840 was appointed by the War Department, through Gen. Hugh Brady, Secretary of a Commission, composed of A. Coquellard of South Bend, and Rev. Isaac McCoy of Westport, Mo., to hold a treaty with the United Nation of Pottowatomies, Ottawas, and Chippewa Indians, north of the Missouri River, which duty he discharged at Council Bluffs.

Mr. Crawford sold out his interest in Elkhart County to Dr. Beardsley, and in 1847 moved to Laporte County, and finally settled on Section 13, New Durham Township, where he now resides. In 1856 he was elected to the Legislature, and served one term, and in January, 1862, he was elected a member of the State Board of Agriculture, and served two years.

Mr. Crawford has been, and is, one of our most active, useful, and influential men, and deserves well of his country.

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