Amos Wood, early Antrim Settler, and his Family

Amos and Edith Wood

Amos Wood's death record indicates that his parents were Josiah Wood and Huldah Maloney. However, Amos apparently caused to be printed in the Elk Rapids Progress of Mar. 24, 1898 an obituary for his father, extracted from a Carthage, NY newspaper.

The obituary identifies him as Isaiah Wood, who died at 103 years and 7 months. The article says that he was of Scottish ancestry, born in Canada, and later lived in St. Lawrence County where he married and remained until 1857 when he moved to Michigan, coming back in 1861 to Deer River, NY and later Carthage to live with his son, J. B. From a history of the county, we learn that J. B. was John B., a grocer.

We know at this point that Amos had at least one brother, Richard, and we suspect, without any proof at this time, that Enoch Wood, who was living in Elk Rapids by 1853 and living on the next-door farm in 1860, was a somewhat older brother.

Richard was a much younger brother, born July 3, 1841. We do not know yet when he arrived in the Elk Rapids area but his obituary says that he came there shortly before the outbreak of the Civil War and enlisted when the call came. The records of the Soldier's Home at Grand Rapids give a birth date of March 18, 1841 and state that he enlisted Oct. 3, 1864 in D Regiment of the 10th Michigan Cavalry. When he was admitted to the hospital, he was diagnosed with cancer of the liver and throat.

Richard was living in Whitewater Twp., Grand Traverse Co. when he married Samantha Curtis Oct. 6, 1865. Enoch Wood was one of the witnesses to this marriage. Whether or not he was a brother of Amos, he was married to Samantha's sister, Matilda. Samantha died in Whitewater Twp. Sept. 16, 1881 of malaria at the age of 37.

On Oct. 31, 1882 at Yuba City (once a community between Elk Rapids and Acme), Richard married Laura Maitland, a widow, who died May 21, 1897. The marriage record also indicates that Richard was born in New York. Richard died May 28, 1926, two weeks after returning from the Soldier's Home in Grand Rapids.

Richard and Samantha had at least two children although Richard's obituary said that Curtis was his only child: James F., born May 18, 1867 and died July 29, 1883 of a lung disorder and Curtis I., born June 4, 1875. Curtis married Ethel Hooper on Nov. 15, 1905. Ethel was originally from Allegan, the daughter of Leslie W. Hooper and Anna Hogson.

Curtis and Ethel had: Earl Richard, born Aug. 11, 1906 and died Oct. 29, 1906 of cholera; Mildred Ione, born ca. 1909; Marion I., born ca 1912; Clyde M., born ca. 1915; Dorothy M., born ca. 1917. Mildred married Charles Laban Clapp, factory worker from Bellaire and the son of Richard Clapp & Kittie Hull, on November 11, 1929 at Elk Rapids. Apparently, Mildred re-married at some point because the survivors in 1953 included: Mrs. Mildred Davis and Mrs. Marion Conley of Muskegon, Mrs. Dorothy Arnston of Elk Rapids and Clyde Wood of Seattle, Wa.

Curtis conducted a produce business and store for many years. He was a member of the Odd Fellows Lodge for 52 years. Curtis died in 1953 and Ethel in 1960. The grave plots for Amos, Richard and Curtis are all quite close together in Maple Grove Cemetery in Elk Rapids.

For much of Amos' life we must depend on the 1905 "Biography of Northern Michigan" While the language is florid and appears frequently to deliberately put the best possible light upon the subject, it is a valuable source of history with respect to the hundreds of people who made no great mark but were an important part of the process of bringing civilization to an unsettled Northern Michigan.

A good example of the literary style of this biography is found in the opening sentence. "This venerable gentleman who head is silvered with the frosts of eighty-three winters and whose life has been filled with interesting and exciting experiences , was among the earliest settlers of Antrim County, and is now one of the few remaining links in the living chain connecting the present with the stirring scenes of the long-past pioneer period."

According to the biography, Amos Wood was born near Brockville, in the Province of Ontario. Evidently, Aunt Bessie Livermore had a copy of Amos' Civil War discharge papers as she cited them in some handwritten notes to the effect that he was born in Kentuck, Canada. This is consistent with the biography and with a newspaper account written on his 100th birthday. Kentuck was a small community near Brockville. The biography says he was born October 20, 1822; his gravestone shows a birth date October 20, 1823 and this is consistent with the fact that he died July 20, 1924 at the age of 100 years and 9 months according to the Death records at the Antrim County Building.

The biography also says that at fourteen he and his family moved across the river to St. Lawrence County, New York, where he grew up on a farm near Morristown. Morristown is, today, a very tiny community and we found no one with records of those days. Amos worked for his father until he struck out on his own and in January, 1845, he married Edith Frazer on "Wells Island" where Edith's parents were then living (Wellesley Island near Kingston in the St. Lawrence River is probably what was meant). At the conclusion of the biography, Edith is said to have been born at Summerford but we cannot find it on a map.

Violet Larson, in her notes said he was a small man about 5 feet 2 or 3 and very slender.

Aunt Bessie's notes say that Edith was born on Wells Island, NY (the biography says "Summerford" which does not appear on maps) October 29, 1829 and that Amos and Edith were married January 23, 1844 which works better than the date in the essay. Further, they say that Edith's father was William Day Fraser, born February 21, 1797 at Bastard (a community near Brockville), Quibbins Twp. and died July 29, 1856 at Elk Rapids and that his father was Jeremiah Fraser, born January 20, 1763 at Scotch Plains, NY and died at Oswego, NY August 16, 1847.

Neither Antrim Co. nor Grand Traverse County records can confirm that William Day Frazer (or Fraser or Frazier) died in Elk Rapids at the above date. However, the Antrim County Register of Deeds contains a copy of two documents wherein W. D. Frazier in 1854 purchased 66.43 acres in section 33 of what is now Elk Rapids Township from the U. S. Government under the provisions of an Act of Congress of April 20, 1820 for $1.25. This parcel became the family homestead.

Jeremiah Frazier served in the Revolutionary War as a private in a New York regiment.

As noted above the depositions given by Jeremiah and by his son, Joseph, in seeking a pension for service in the Revolutionary War are available on microfilm in the Burton Historical Collection at the Detroit Main Library. On June 17, 1833, the War Department Pension Office said that Jeremiah Frayser had been on the return (list) of the "Dead" of the New York Regiments and his claim for benefits had been "heretofore rejected." However, during the winter just prior a muster roll of "Van Schaick's regiment" was obtained and it appeared Jeremiah had enlisted December 3, 1776 and was taken prisoner in 1779.

On July 29, 1833, Jeremiah Frazer, private in the First Regiment of the New York line was approved for benefits under the Act of 1828.

The above War Department actions arose out of a deposition Jeremiah Frazer gave September 25, 1832 in St. Lawrence Co., NY, saying that he then lived at Morristown. It reiterates his birthday and says that he lived at Scotch Plains, NY until about 13 and then enlisted. There is a long recitation of campaigns in which he was involved in New York and what is now Quebec until the day when he went out in a party of 24 under Lt. William Scudder to cut hay.

A party of Indians led by a Frenchman surprised the party, left 6 dead in the field and took the rest to Canada where Jeremiah was held until the end of the war and lived there for a time after the war.

A son of Jeremiah, Joseph, gave a deposition in Oswego Co., NY in April, 1853 seeking aid for a sister and stated that his father died in July or August, 1847. Joseph appears to have signed the deposition "Joseph Frasier"

On December 19, 1853, a deposition by Joseph says Jeremiah died August 16, 1847, that Jeremiah's wife died February 1846 and that his children were : Collins Fraser, William Fraser, Daniel F. Fraser, Jerusha Fraser, Charlotte Chatterton and Polly Burtch.

Again, despite the spelling in the deposition of "Fraser" and "Frazer", Joseph appears to have signed his name "Joseph Frasier."

The biography says "Two years after his marriage Mr. Wood settled at Battle Creek, Michigan, where he spent the ensuing six years, removing a little later to Grand Rapids, which city he made his home until about 1852."

The time table here is very difficult. Taking the "two years" literally would put him in Battle Creek in 1846 or 1847. But we know from the Federal Census taken November 4, 1850 that Amos and Edith were then living at Lowell in Kent County, somewhat east of Grand Rapids. It also indicates that there were then four children, three of whom had been born in New York. It seems more likely that Amos and Edith moved to Michigan between Anna Melissa's birth in 1848 and Elida's in May, 1849 and that the above reference to being in Battle Creek for six years is in error.

During this period, Amos became acquainted with A. S. Wadsworth, who had travelled extensively though out northern Michigan, had acted as government survey in the mid-1840's and owned a lumber mill and land in the Grand Traverse region. Amos agreed to join him as a hired hand and soon six other men joined them as well "to try their fortunes in the new country, of which they had heard so many favourable reports."

The group readied itself to start the journey despite the absence of settlements and roads in the region through which they were to traverse and the lack of horses, their only means of travel being to go on foot.

Taking what they thought were ample provisions to last them during the journey, each carrying his own share, the company followed the range line between ranges 11 and 12 until reaching the Manistee River, when they were compelled to halt for a while because of an accident to Amos, who cut himself in the leg, almost severing the cords and making him nearly helpless. The wound was dressed by an Indian who fortunately happened to be passing by, after which the injured man managed to limp along and keep pace with his companions.

A half day's journey from Traverse City, the party's provisions ran out and in camp at night all they had to eat was a partridge, which one of the men had killed during the day. From there they continued on until they reached Boardman's mill. After a good meal, the company proceeded to Traverse City, where they took a Mackinaw boat for East Bay and reached Elk Rapids the following night, the town at that time consisting of a single house which stood on the site later occupied by the Riverside Hotel.

The source does not explain why they would take a boat around Old Mission rather than crossing the peninsula directly to East Bay, nor why the boat, having rounded Old Mission, did not proceed to Elk Rapids directly. In my opinion, the story about the conclusion of the trip is unlikely. Among other issues, Boardman's mill was not located that far from what is now downtown Traverse City.

In any event, Mr. Wadsworth put his mill in operation and Amos was employed for some months. During a part of this time he lived with Mr. Wadsworth in a tent, later moving into a little pole cabin which had been deserted by the Indians. Amos then joined a surveying party under Mr. Wadsworth, who was a civil engineer, and for three months helped survey land and run lines in the vicinity of Elk Rapids and what is now Lelanaw County, working as an axe man.

From another history of the region , we get a brief glimpses into that era:

"...the property came back into Wadsworth's hands, and November, 1851, McLaughlin moved his family into Elk Rapids. During this fall, the families of Amos Wood, McVicar and a Mormon family named Barnes arrived. The Mormons remained but a short time. Wood and McVicar became settlers of the county."

And from another , some remembrances of Lydia McLaughlin published together with her obituary:

"In November, 1851, the family moved to where Elk Rapids now stands. They found two families there, those of Amos Woods and Alex McVicar. One of them shortly went into the lumbering camp at Skegemog. This proved to be a harder winter than any had expected. It closed in early and was unusually severe."

Remember that the group that walked from Grand Rapids to Elk Rapids consisted of A. S. Wadsworth, Amos and six others. There is no clue to who the others were and -- except for Alexander McVicar -- no indication that they stayed there.

The first town election was held 4-25-1853 at A. S. Wadsworth's house and Amos secured the minor positions of pound master and petit juror. Another juror was Enoch M. Wood, whom we believe may have been a brother of Amos.

Later, Amos and Alex McVickar worked for pay on a sail boat to Chicago and, subsequently returned to Michigan where, for some months, Amos was employed on a trading boat plying the Grand River to Grand Haven.

By working in mills, in the woods and with surveying parties he earned enough money to tide his family over. He continued in the employ of Mr. Wadsworth as long as Mr. Wadsworth lived in the area and in the meantime settled on his farm south of Elk Rapids where "he took up a homestead at one and a quarter dollars an acre, selling the town property he had previously purchased in order to apply the proceeds on the payment."

The biography claims that Amos had one hundred and sixty-two acres lying two and a half miles south of Elk Rapids on Elk Lake. Our review of records in the Register of Deeds Office in Bellaire is incomplete. Our understanding thusfar is that Amos bought a lot in Elk Rapids from Abram Wadsworth on Sept. 26, 1853 for $5. As indicated earlier, his father-in-law, William Day Fraser, bought 66 acres from the U. S. Goverment and that this property became the Wood homestead.

"From time to time he added to his landed interests, one of his last purchases being the estate of his father-in-law, which adjoins the home place, the two combined making one of the finest and most valuable farms in the township of Elk Rapids.

The biography indicates that he cleared his land without a team and, until roads were constructed, had to market his produce and transport supplies back to the farm by using a canoe.

"In addition to his home place, he helped clear and develop several other farms, having secured by a soldier's claim, a quarter section of excellent land on the east side of Torch Lake which he also improved." We suspect that investigation will eventually establish that this is the farm that William Wood came to own and which passed to his son, Elmer... and is the farm where Amos later died.

In 1864, almost 42, he went to Detroit and on May 14, enlisted in Company B, 4th United States Battery and saw service in Virginia. While this is consistent with "Record of Service of Volunteers in the Civil War", the Grand Traverse Herald reported in June 1864 that, along with Alexander Vicar and several others, he had been drafted.

The biography says, "He remained at his command at the front until the surrender of General Lee, being present on that occasion and witnessing the ceremony, and at the cessation of hostilities took part in the grand review at the national capitol, after which he was honorably discharged, his record being without a blemish and all that a true solder could desire."

He was discharged at Camp Barry, D.C. Oct. 27, 1865 . His job in the army was to guard ammunition wagons.

The Grand Traverse Herald reports that he was injured about the head and face during a logging bee.

Edith died on September 3, 1900.

Some time shortly after this essay was written, the farm house, built in 1881 by Jonah Horton of Charlevoix, burned down. Jonah or John was Elnora's first husband. The 1910 census shows Amos living with William and Rhoda although Violet says he lived with Elmer and Wanda in his last years. As noted above, Elmer may have inherited the farm from William.

Our last views of Amos come from Percy Noble who lived in the Island House at Elk Rapids, "Of course, there were some men who preferred walking to the livery stables. One of these was Old Amos Wood. He lived out in Milton,, and he always walked to town and back unless he had a heavy load. He kept up that practice until he had nearly reached the century mark."

And from a newspaper account of his 100th birthday , "On his ninety ninth birthday, he dug and picked up potatoes on his son's farm for a good portion of the day. "When past ninety years of age he would jump into the air with the agility of a boy and turn a hand spring, and frquently did it for the amustement of his neighbors and friends. Up to four or five years ago he would walk from his son's home to town, a distance of seven or eight miles, and return. "This spring he has been to town at least twice and has walked about the village with a sprightliness of a man of sixty."

The biography concludes by identifying the seven living children of Amos and Edith as follows:

. Rosella, wife of John Ferguson, living near Elk Rapids
. William, farming in Milton Township, east of Elk Rapids
. Elida, of Bellaire
. Chester, manager of the home farm
. Anna Melissa, wife of Hiram Odell of Kewadin
. Elnora, wife of Richard Ryan and living in Charlevoix
. Earnest Winchell, an M. E. minister at Kingsley

Omitted from this list are Orlando who died in an accident in October, 1879; George Enoch who died in 1894; and two children who died of whooping cough and measles while Amos was in service.

Subsequent pages with deal with the lines of:

Rosella born circa 1845
William born circa 1846
Anna Melissa born May 13, 1848 died 3-1-1917
Elida P. born May 1849
George Enoch born circa 1851 died 1889
Earnest W. born November 20, 1853 died Aug. 3, 1935
Elnora born Sept. 28, 1858/64 died Sept. 26, 1935
Orland born circa 1862 died Oct. 17, 1879
Chester born Sept. 1865 died Dec. 15, 1915


The Federal Census taken November 4, 1850 in Lowell, Kent County, MI. indicated that Rosella was 5 and born in New York. Antrim County Vital Records show that Rosella Wood, 26, of Elk Rapids, born in New York, married Doctor Charles Abram Weller, 50, born in Vermont. The marriage took place on May 9, 1871 in Elk Rapids and was performed by Justice of the Peace J. J. Mclaughlin (whose property was near that of Amos). Witnesses were Hiram and Melissa Odell of Elk Rapids.

In January 1872, she filed for divorce and the action was finalized on June 18. It seems that Mr. Weller was not nice. C. A. Weller aka Calvin Abram aka Charles Abram Weller was arrested in 1871 and drew a three year term in prison ending Sept. 10, 1874 for adultery. In 1875, he was arrested near Reed City for obtaining goods under false pretenses.

Vital Records report that on June 25, 1873, Rosella Wood, 28, of Elk Rapids, born in New York, married John Ferguson of Rapid River, born in Canada. J. B. Hall was the minister. Rapid River was an early designation for the area now known as Rapid City. Kalkaska County Vital Records indicate that John and Rosella had Gilbert, born June 22, 1874; Maggie in September, 1879 and Howard in September 1881.

On Dec. 25, 1897 at Elk Rapids, Maggie married William H. Seeley, a 23 year old farmer from South Haven, the son of G. W. Seeley and Sarah Arnold. Chester and Effie Wood were the witnesses. The marriage took place at John's home according to the Elk Rapids Progress.

On December 23, 1902, at Elk Rapids, J. Howard Ferguson, a laborer from Leetsville, married Nina Vaughn of Elk Rapids, the daughter of T. J. Vaughn and Edna Clark. Howard and Nina had an unnamed daughter November 10, 1903 at Elk Rapids. She died Dec. 23 of erysipelas.

In 1926, Rosella was admitted to the Asylum at Traverse City.


The Federal Census of November 4, 1850 indicated that William was 4 and born in New York. On Jan. 2, 1866 , William married Rhoda A. Hawley at her parents' house in Helena Twp. She was born in Canada, Aug. 20, 1841, the daughter of Truman Hawley & Rhoda Ann _____. She died of a cerebral hemorrhage on Jan. 9, 1935 in Milton Township. We have no further information about William or Rhoda.

Based on the censuses of 1870, 1880 and 1900 plus the records inspected at the County Building, their children appear to have been:
Edward Arvelle born circa 1867 died 8-4-1955
Eugene born 5-31-1869 died 10-27-1870
Mary E. born 1872 died 1945
Ida May born 5-19-1877
Paul born Feb., 1880 died 1883
Grace Laura born 9-16-1883 died 1986
Elmer born 8-4-1888 died 4-23-1972
Flora L. born March 21, 1892

The 1900 census says that Rhoda bore 8 children of whom 4 were living at the time of the census. Thus, all of their children are listed above.

Edward married Anna May Haller on October 24, 1897 in Milton Twp. Anna May was born in Germany, the daughter of Paulus and Walburga Haller who were from Switzerland.

Antrim County Vital Records show that on November 4, 1944 Edward Wood, 77, retired, married Hermina Bache (nee Spinner) aged 64. She had been born in Sweden on October 10, 1880, the daughter of Jacob and Barbara Spinner. She married Albert Bachi in 1903 and Edward in 1944. She was a member of the Presbyterian Church in Elk Rapids, the Elk Rapids Garden Club and the Rebecca's. She died at the Meadowbrook Medical Care Facility in Bellaire at the age of 96 on October 30, 1976.

Edward died August 4, 1955.
Eugene died October 27, 1870 of lung congestion.

Ida M. married Robert A. Drown of Whitewater Twp. at Traverse City on January 11, 1895. He was a 29 year old farmer, was born in Canada, the son of Albert Drown and Elizabeth Cross.

Mary married George E. Hurst on November 5, 1891. The witnesses were her brother Edward and his wife "Annie". My mother remembers her as "Mame". The Elk Rapids Progress of Jan. 9, 1896 said that George and Mary were visiting her parents and they were from Van Buren (apparently Grand Traverse Co). A week later the paper reported that William had gone to Van Buren to work. The Hursts' had several children, one of whom, Arville, became a doctor and moved to the South. Another was Carroll Morton Victor Hurst, born March 8, 1906. George died in 1943 and Mary in 1945. Both are buried in the Elk Rapids cemetery.

We have no data on Paul except that the Elk Rapids Progress on March 16, 1883 said: "It is with regret and sympathy we learn of the death of a little son of William Woods, of S. Milton, by scalding ... 3 years of age."

Grace Laura, 20, married Delbert Fox, a 30 year old farmer from South Milton on May 9, 1903 at South Milton. Delbert was born in South Milton, the son of Richard Fox and Emily Sweeney. William and Rhoda Wood were the witnesses. She celebrated her 101st birthday in a care facility in Traverse City in 1984 and died in 1986. Delbert died December 16, 1936 of Angina at the age of 63 years, 11 months and 28 days.

Elmer served in World War I and married Wanda Kite on May 15, 1920 and died 4-23-1972. He is buried in the Milton Twp. Cemetery. Wanda had been born at Payne, OH. on November 4, 1903 to John Baker Kite and Lousina Komer Kite. She died November 9, 1973.

The following from the Elk Rapids Progress of 8-9-1895 almost certainly refers to Flora L. "South Milton: Little Lillie, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. William Wood, died August 19th after one week of severe suffering" and elsewhere in the same paper, "Mrs. Wood, of Milton, lost her little four-year old girl Tuesday night."

Thus, Edward, Grace Laura, Elmer and Mary were the four alive in 1900 per the census.

Grace and Delbert had Paul Woodrow Fox, born 7-14-1915. He later changed his name to Richard Day Fox. Others were Rolaine Viviane Fox Truax, born 1-19-1919, Kenneth Elton Fox, born 4-16-1920 and living in Rapid City until he died in 1987 and Wayne in Tucson. Richard died October 27, 1989.


The 1850 federal census indicated that Anna was 2 and born in New York. County death records establish that she was born in Canada May 13, 1848 and died March 1, 1917 of valvular heart disease in Milton Township.

Grand Traverse County Vital Records report the marriage on August 23, 1865 of Hiram Odell, 24, of Whitewater to Anna Melissa Wood of Elk Rapids by Leroy Warren, minister. The witnesses were Aaron Essex of Whitewater and Sylvia Wood of Elk Rapids. She was born circa 1842, was an Odell and married a George Wood. Later she married a Fred Burberry. She was a sister of Hiram who came from a large family, and took Philander into her home shortly before he died.

Hiram was born October 17, 1840, the son of Philander Odell and Fidelia Welton. Philander was one of the first settlers in Whitewater Twp., arriving in 1855 Hiram served in the Civil War. According to records from the Soldier's Home at Grand Rapids, he came to Michigan in September, 1856 and first enlisted Sept. 1861 at Elk Rapids and re-enlisted December 12, 1863 in Virginia. He was discharged at Elmira, NY June 19, 1865, receiving a pension at some point of $10 a month.

According to the Elk Rapids Progress, in 1883 he bought a shingle mill near Williamsburg from Porter & Crisp, moving a short distance to locate it on the Durga Creek.

He was a small man of 5'6" and was diagnosed at Grand Rapids as suffering from valvular heart disease, rheumatism, piles and dropsey in the legs. He first sought admission to the Home for treatment in 1901, was discharged Aug. 14, 1902 and re-admitted Oct. 29, 1906 for treatment.

He died December 3, 1906 of stomach cancer at the age of 66 years, 1 month and 17 days. His obituary in the Elk Rapids Progress says he was born in New York and one of the founders of the Methodist Episcopal church in Kewadin. Anna Melissa died March 1, 1917 of heart disease in Milton Township

The Odell's had the following children:
Francis Eugene born October 17, 1866
Ida Rosetta born 1868 died September 30, 1898
William F. born 1873 died 10-13-1876
Ernest born October, 1876
Dora born 1878 died 7-11-1879
Gilbert born 1884
Cora born July 11, 1886 died October,
plus a daughter, Mrs. Lewis Dennis, according to articles in the Elk Rapids Progress in 1903 and 1906.

Frank married Eliza J. Mitchell, daughter of Jefferson and Almira, who'd come to Antrim Co. from Indiana. The 1910 census says she bore 6 children, of whom 5 were then living although 7 births are recorded in the list below. Frank died July 5, 1920 of cancer. Eliza died in 1949.

The 1900 and 1910 censuses are somewhat hard to read and confusing when it comes to identifying Frank and Eliza's children. They appear to be:

Clayton Floyd born 9-3-1892
Cliffie Almira born July 31, 1895 died 1946
Viola (or Vida) R. born Dec. 1897 died 1975
Douglas born September 27, 1901 at Milton
Beatrice Leola born January 12, 1904 died 12-18-1904 of meningitis
Unnamed born March 16, 1906 at Milton
Hilda Gwendolyn born February 25, 1907 at Milton

Clayton, 23, married Myrtle Irene Fox, 21, on June 12, 1916 at Milton. Myrtle was from Milton, born in Canada, the daughter of George R. Fox and ----. They had five children:

Thelma Marie born August 18, 1917
Lee Paul born November 11, 1921
Mary Josephine born January 14, 1923 died 1-31-1923
Clyde Jefferson born February 4, 1924
Ronald Russell born February 13, 1925

Cliffie Almira Odell, 16, married Frank Kaiser, 31, a laborer from Kewadin on Jan. 31, 1912 with Frank W. Kaiser and Vida R. Odell as witness. Frank was a laborer for Elk Rapids, born at Torch Lake, the son of Fred Kaiser and Martha M. Thompson, and a brother of Fred Kaiser who married Elsie Pascoe. They had a child named Velma Jane but she died June 7, 1916 after living only a few hours. Frank Kaiser died at his home in Muskegon at 50 on March 11, 1935. Cliffie died in 1946.

On April 25, 1915, Vida married Isadore Roberts, the 20 year old son of John Roberts and Lottie Brownson. He was a farmer, from Rapids City. On April 25, 1921 in Central Lake, she married Allen Burch, born circa 1895. He was from Central Lake and born in Batavia, Mi., a farmer, the son of V. U. Burch and Minnie Hurley.

Ida Rosetta, 16, of Milton, married John A. Pascoe, 23, a laborer from Milton Twp. and born in Canada on September 1, 1884. Hiram and Frank were the witnesses. She died September 30, 1898 at her parents' home of blood poisoning, leaving four children. John died in 1942 and is buried at Elk Rapids.

George Lester Pascoe was born in Milton Twp. July 16, 1891. In addition, we know from the 1890 census that Elsie May was born September, 1894 and Pierce was born January, 1897 and living in the Hiram Odell household. Elsie May married Frederick William Kaiser, a laborer from Elk Rapids and the son of Fred Kaiser and Martha M. Thompson on May 31, 1912 and had at least one son, Elmer George Willard Kaiser.

In addition to George, Elsie and Pierce, we know of Elmer, a laborer living in Bellaire, who on June 19, 1909, married Ellen Colwell.

According to Grand Traverse County Vital Records, William F. was drowned at the age of 3 years, 9 months, and 13 days in Whitewater Twp.

Dora died at the age 8 months and 20 days in Whitewater Twp. of whooping cough.

Gilbert married his cousin, Grace Leora Wood, on February 11, 1907 at Bellaire. At the time he was a laborer living in Kewadin.

Ernest married Mrs. Anna Harris, born at Traverse City, the daughter of L. Schofield and Addie Pierwan, at Milton Twp. on October 17, 1901. They had at least one child, Euphemia R., born April 26, 1907 at Milton.

Ida, Cora and Lowell are buried in the family plot at the cemetery in Elk Rapids according to a survey of Elk Rapids cemetery records done by the DAR in 1933. However, there are no markers for them. Lowell was a son of George W. Odell whom we haven't identified yet. The only marker for Hiram is a Civil War stone issued by the government.

Gilbert and "Mrs. Lewis Dennis" lived at least until 1906 but we have no further information.


The 1850 census reported that Elida was eleven months old and born in Michigan. The Marriage Index shows that on March 24, 1872, Elida, a 23 year old farmer from Elk Rapids married Julia Ann Filer, 20, also from Elk Rapids and born in Canada. Elida owned lot A12 at Maple Grove Cemetery in Elk Rapids but we have not found his stone.

The 1880 and 1890 censuses together with Vital Records reveal that Elida and Julia had five children:
Charles H. born circa 1873
George W. (or M.) born 12-15-1875 died 12-15-1882 of measles
Isaac E. born May 1877
Clara Myrtle born 7-30-1880
Walter Eugene born 3-24-1885

Elida later married Melissa _____ and had five more children:
Roy born August 1887
Wilda born August 1889
Elvin born July 1891
Homer McKinley born August 4, 1896 at Elk Rapids
Wilber born November 1899

By 1910, he had moved to Boyne City and married Lizzie ____, who had a daughter, Elsie.

The Marriage Index reports that Isaac E. Wood, 25, a laborer from Elk Rapids, married Maudie M. Burdick, 18, on Dec. 25, 1902 at Elk Rapids. She was born at Fruitport, the daughter of Thomas F. Burdick & May Slyter.

They had at least one son, Thomas Gordon Wood, born October 2, 1903 at Elk Rapids.


The 1861 census refers to Enoch (he was not called "George" by the family) as being 9 at the time in Michigan. The Marriage Index reports that on May 21, 1871, George Enoch Wood, 20, Elk Rapids, born in Michigan, and Charlotte Maria Beebe, 16, of Whitewater, born in Canada to John and Mary Beebe, were married in Elk Rapids. Hiram and Melissa were the witnesses. It appears that a child, Ada, was born circa 1874.

Rose Mary Davenport, of Lansing, provided extensive data on this family, for which we are extremely grateful. Her data indicates that Enoch and Charlotte had two children, Adia and Alta. We know nothing about Alta except that the May 21, 1896 issue of the Elk Rapids Progress quotes the Ludington correspondent in the Grand Rapids Herald to the effect that Alta Wood of Elk Rapids married Albert J. Robinson the previous Sunday at Grace Episcopal church, presumably in Ludington. The June 16, 1898 issue of the Elk Rapids Progress said that Charles Boomer and Ada Wood, formerly of Elk Rapids, were married at the home of the groom's parents in Coral, Mi. on Friday, June 10th and that they would make their home there for a time.

Charlotte died August 4, 1877 of consumption at the age of 22 years, 4 months and 16 days and George married Sarah Jane Obrien in March 24, 1882 at his home in Yuba. Sarah Jane was born in Rutland, Vt., the daughter of Thomas W. and Josephine Obrien.

The marriage record says Enoch was born on Old Mission. It may be in those early days, Amos and Edith had to cross the bay to Northport to find medical care. Enoch died in 1889 and is buried at Elk Rapids. Sarah was born April 7, 1863. Their children were:
Violet Josephine born 1885 died 11-7-1980
Lenna born 1890 died 7-1938
Bertha born 10-2-1887
Laura Mildred born 5-8-1893 died 11-20-1974

Sarah married Samuel Edmund Richardson June 23, 1898 in Traverse City and had two more children. One of them was Harold Edmond Richardson, born October 15, 1902 at Elk Rapids. Sarah died in 1952 and is buried at Elk Rapids Cemetery. Samuel was the son of Elijah S. Richardson and and Mary Sheldon. He was born in Gratiot Co. Samuel died in 1930. In 1938, Sarah Jane (also known as Jennie) was living in Auburn Heights, probably with Harold who also lived there. The obituary for Lenna Wood identifies the other child with Samuel Richardson as "Mrs. Gladys Taylor of Pontiac."

Violet married Emil Lee (Eimar ) Larson, a moulder, August 19, 1902. He was born February 1, 1883 in Christana, Norway, the son of Hans J. Larson and Ellen Erickson, and died at Lansing in 1945. Their children were Ellen Jane and Marion Jeannette. In 1952, Violet married Jack Francis Fitzgerald.

Ellen Jane Larson was born in 1906 and married Albert Abner Griffith, born 1907, in 1933. They had Mary Ellen, born 1944, and Roger Lee, born 1941, whom I vaguely remember from a visit my parents made, probably in the early '40's.

Ellen Griffith provided a photo copy of some notes that Violet set down in 1978. She indicated that Enoch was a millwright and carpenter. She also said that her maternal grandfather, Tom Obrien, married a French girl, emigrated from Scotland to Rutland, Vermont and that they had 2 boys and 6 girls.

The Obrien's sold their home in Vermont, bought an ox team and wagon and moved to Michigan, locating between Elk Rapids and Williamsburg.

The DAR extract from cemetery records at Elk Rapids indicates that Thomas W. Obrien was born in Ireland and died 5-1-1907 and that Mrs. Thomas W. Obrien was born in Canada 7-20-1834 and died 10-18-1916.

Mary Ellen Griffith married Kenneth Harold Linton, also, born 1944, in 1964 and they had three children:
Michael Harold born 1967
Amy Jo born 1970
Kayla Marie born 1970 (twins)

Roger Lee Griffith married Bonnie Lane, born 1942, in 1962. They had:
Melissa Jane born 1962
Craig David born 1969

Marion Jeanette Larson was born 1909 and married Milton Lester Berg in 1944. He was born 1909. They had Marye Lynn, born 1946. She married Thomas Anthony Lepo in 1971. He was born 1947. They had two children:
Kristin Jeanette born 1974
Karin Lynn born 1981

Enoch's second daughter, Lenna, married Emil Louis Pfeiffer on June 3, 1907 at Elk Rapids. He was then a grocery clerk, born in Elk Rapids, the son of Frederick Pfeiffer and Anna B. Reatz. Emil's family apparently was a little less than illustrious. His father, also known as Fritz, had whipped his wife and she died three weeks later in September, 1886. A week after the story about Anna had circulated in the paper, Fritz was in trouble again, having threatened a neighbor with a gun.

Emil and Lenna had two children:

In July, 1938, Lenna hung herself in the basement of their home in Elk Rapids. The newspaper account indicates that she had been at the University of Michigan medical center for medical attention and had recently returned home. The conjecture was that she was despondent of her ill health. She was buried in George Enoch's plot.

At that time, Emil was the Elk Rapids Township supervisor. Lenna was a member of the Elk Rapids chapter of the Order of the Eastern Star. At the time of her death, both Evelyn and Eunice lived in Detroit as did her sister, Laura Davenport.

On November 19, 1938, Emil, now a resort owner, married Marie Randen of Pleasant Ridge. His daughter, Evelyn, and her husband, Joseph Hyble, also from Pleasant Ridge were witnesses.

Eunice married Ernest McGeachy; they had two children:

Evelyn married Joseph Hyble who died in 1977. They had two children:

Enoch's third daughter, Bertha, married John Merillat on November 9, 1910 at Elk Rapids. John was a laborer from Elk Rapids but born in Archibald, Oh. circa 1884, the son of Jonathan Merillat and Emma Ruffin. Bertha graduated from Elk Rapids High School in 1909, attended Normal College and taught rural schools in South Milton Township. She was an active member of Rapid City Assembly of God where she taught Sunday School for 25 years. John died March 29, 1970. She died at 97 on February 21, 1985. She was survived by one daughter, Flossie Roderick of Alden.

George's fourth daughter, Laura Mildred, provides the Davenport connection. Laura married Angus H. Davenport who was born May 22, 1893. Angus died 10-8-1972 Their children were:
(Angus) Marvin born 6-3-1917 died 5-24-1983
Charles Addison born 7-9-1918
Kenneth Wood born 9-1924 killed 12-1944 in Belgium

Marvin married Clarice Elaine Dollman (born 8-2-1918) on 8-20-1939. They were divorced 6-12-1969. Their children were:
Kenneth Marvin born 2-18-1943
Patricia Ann born 11-11-1944
Bruce Lee born 10-21-1949
Grant Dean born 11-22-1950

Marvin re-married, to Irene Blanche Bailey Mott (born 10-18-1922) on 11-1-1969 and died 5-24-1983.
Kenneth Marvin Davenport married Diane Carter (born 4-15-19__) June 1966. They were divorced 1977 without children.

Patricia Ann Davenport married John Norris Kirk (born 9-29-1941) on March 21, 1964 and they had 3 children:
Jean Marie born 12-26-1966
John Marvin born 7-18-1968
Jody Elizabeth born 10-5-1982
Bruce Lee Davenport married Rose Mary Swank (who has compiled this material) May 2, 1970. Rose Mary was born December 22, 1949. They have two children:
Michelle Elaine born 8-17-1973
Brent Curtis born 9-24-1975

Grant Dean Davenport married Barbara Ann Chumney (born June 25, 1958) on 7-7-1979. They had Andrew Scott on November 6, 1980 and divorced in November 1983.

Charles Addison Davenport, the second of Laura's children, married Anna Mae Holt (born 12-18-1919) on May 20, 1941 and they had:
Charlene Yvonne born 3-23-1944
Richard Scott born 4-28-1954

Charlene Yvonne Davenport married David Warren Evans (born 9-25-1944) on June 30 1966. They had one:
Adam David

Richard Scott married Terri Kathleen DeTiene (born 9-19-1953) on June 7, 1971 and they had two children:
Matthew Seth born 5-21-1979
Mandy Suzanne born 8-24-1982

Kenneth Wood Davenport, the third of Laura's children, married Marie Carre and they had one child:
Nancy born Jan. 1943


The W. stands for Winchell or something similar. Sources vary. Sources also vary as to whether it's Ernest Winchell or Winchell Ernest.

In any event, Ernest appears on the 1861 census as 7 years old. Ernest was born November 20, 1853. Kalkaska Vital Records says that on Dec. 2, 1878, he married Charlotte Way of Clearwater (Twp., Kalkaska Co.) and that she was born in Canada. She was born August 22, 1860.

The Elk Rapids Progress indicates that in Feb. 1883, he was cancassing for the sales of bibles in North Milton and that in Nov. 1884 he located at Ironton to take the new M. E. church there. In 1886, he was living at Clarion when Robert was born.

The Elk Rapids Progress indicates that he received an appointment from the M. E. conference in Sept. 1887 to the parish at Inland and in Sept. 1889 to the parishes of Inland and Oviatt.

Michigan Conference records at the Library of Michigan report that in 1890 he was a probationer at Cross Village. He was received into the Michigan Conference (perhaps as compared to the Grand Traverse Conference) in 1891. There's a gap in the reports but we learn that he was at Old Mission in 1913, retired at Traverse City in 1916, was at Alanson from 1916 to 1921 and at Traverse City from 1922 to 1929. In 1929, he preached at Amos' funeral.

Violet Larson's notes indicate that Ernest preached to the Indians at Cross Village but does not show a date. However, we know that he had charge of an Indian Mission at Calkinsville near what is now Rosebush in the period 1895-97 which may explain why the 1900 census shows that Ernest and Charlotte lived in McBain.

At that time, they had two children: Merton, born March 1880 and Robert Ernest, born June 6, 1886 at Clarion, south of Petoskey. Her mother, Elizabeth, was also living with them. This enables us to establish that Charlotte's parents were John and Elizabeth Way. This large family is buried at the cemetery in Rapid City.

Charlotte died December 9, 1904 at Kingsley, leaving three children.

The May 10, 1905 issue of the Elk Rapids Progress refers to Robert E. as editor of the paper in Kingsley. Amos's biography places Ernest in Kingsley as the Methodist preacher.

A letter from Wesley Wood of Williamsburg in 1984 revealed that after Charlotte and a second wife died, Ernest married Mary Todd of Allen, Mi. in 1922. She was the organist at the church where he was preaching. Wesley was born to them in 1925. Mary Todd died in 1965 at age 82.

Ernest died August 4, 1935 at the Osteopathic Hospital in Traverse City after surgery which led to pneumonia and uremia.


Amos' biography says of her only that she married Richard Ryan and lived in Charlevoix. According to her obituary , Ida E. Wood was born Sept. 28, 1864 in Elk Rapids. While this is reasonable consistent (i.e. only one month off) with the death record which says that her age was 70 years, 11 months and 29 days, four bits of evidence call for an earlier date:
the 1860 census has her name wrong but says she is 2
the 1870 census shows her age as 11
the 1874 marriage record says she was 17 (and based on the next item below she was only a little over 15!)
the 1900 census says she was born Sept. 1858

Finally, it would be more comforting to think that Ida was 6 when Amos enlisted in May 1864 than to think that Edith was 5 months pregnant when he left. I cannot establish that Ida E. = Ida Elnora but I wish I could but there is in Charlevoix in the same time frame Richard and Emma Ryan.

Ida married Jno. A. Horton (Jno. sometimes = Jonah and sometimes = John) March 24, 1874 at Charlevoix. She was 17 and he was 40, a carpenter and the son of Samuel Horton, for whom Horton's Bay was named.

John or Jonah died Oct. 14, 1886. Roughly two months later, on Dec. 24, their daughter, Lillie, age 6, died for burns received from being scalded somehow. These entries established that they were then living at Horton's Bay.

On June 6, 1888 at Boyne City, Ida married Richard Ryan, a 36 year old farmer born in Canada, the son of William Ryan and Mary Shay who originally came from Ireland. Although Ida's obituary says she was a faithful member of the Congregational church in Charlevoix, Richard's obituary indicates that he was Catholic.

From it, we learn that he was born at Spencerville, Ontario. It does not say when but based on the death record in the County Clerk's office, he was born Jan. 10, 1846, assuming that age at time of death was accurate. It said that he came to Charlevoix at an early age and that is apparently the case since the obituary says that he worked for John S. Dixon for a long time and John was one of the earliest settlers, first arriving around 1856. He platted the village in 1868.

Subsequently, Richard worked for a resort owned by the Pere Marquette Railroad at Charlevoix from 1898 until his death.

The two obituaries are inconsistent as to the number of surviving daughters. His obituary mentions only Ida S. Tobias of Grand Rapids. Her obituary mentions Margaret Tobias of Grand Rapids and Mrs. Violet Gysin of Chicago. My interpretation is that Violet is a daughter by Ida's marriage to Jno. Horton although I cannot get into birth records adequate to prove this. The 1900 census says Margaret was born in May 1889.


The 1870 census reports "Orland", aged 8. Orlando died October 17, 1879 in an accident. He was 18. Ami Munson had been hired by Josiah Curtis to dig a well. He and others working on the project had gotten down to about 85 feet, frequently having to use blasting powder to get through the heavy clay. On October 16, Ami went down and had sent up one bucket full of dirt when he signalled for the bucket to be returned as quickly as possible. He got into the bucket and they hauled him up but he lost his hold and fell from the bucket as it neared the top and was killed instantly. Orlando volunteered to go down and get him. He secured Ami's body to the bucket and got onto it for the ride up. At about 20 feet from the top, he, too, fell back to the bottom of the hole, breaking his back and killing him as well. A neighbor went for help and H. H. Noble came to the site and removed their bodies with a grappling hook in a few minutes.


Chester Merton Wood was born September 6, 1866 . The DAR extract of Antrim County Records in 1933 indicate that lot 526 at Maple Grove Cemetery in Elk Rapids belongs to Chester and that buried there are:

Effie Jeannette Wood Born Sand Lake 2-20-1868 died 4-10-1906
Chester Wood Elk Rapids died 12-15-1915

There are no gravestones on the plot for them although the plot is marked by a stone for Iva and her husband, Clarence.

Chester and Effie's children were:
Jessie Marian born 4-18-1887 died Dec. _____
Lillie Edith born 10-16-1888 died 12-16-1888 of lung inflammation
Grace Lenora born 10-6-1889 died unk.
Bessie Irene born 11-14-1891 died 8-2-1989
Cloe Evaline born 8-31-1893 died 3-14-1991
Iva Leora born 12-3-1895 died Jan. 1948
Gladys born 8-29-1898
Orvin Willis born 2-24-1900 died 11-12-1962
Lila Elizabeth born 5-4-1902 died 1920
Marjorie Isabel born 4-23-1904 unk.

Effie's parents were John P. Vansaw (1830 - 1910) and Elizabeth Snyder (1836 - 1925). John was a civil war veteran who served in Co. I, 12th Mi. Inf. The Vansaw's are buried at Clarion, Mi. Effie had two brothers and a sister: Charles, Ralph and Lulu.

The Elk Rapids Progress of 9-27-1895 says "Mrs. Chester Wood and children leave for Clarion next Saturday to spend the winter with her people. Mr. Wood will go later when he has his crops harvested." There's no clue to why she would go to live with her parents when their house was relatively new. However, she was 6 months pregnant with Iva.

The Elk Rapids Progress of July 20, 1905 tells of Effie and 2 children (my mother and her sister, Iva) coming to town in the evening when the horse ran away and collided with the rig in front of them. They were thrown out. Injuries were not serious. My mother still remembers the incident and that she was very frightened.

The Elk Rapids Progress of April 12, 1906 reports Effie's death of Stomach trouble after an illness of 5 or 6 weeks and just short of her 20th anniversary, suggesting that Chester and Effie were married in May, 1886.

Jessie married Lewis W. Dingman on September 17, 1903 at Bellaire. He was a farmer, the son of William Dingman and Emma Beebe. On September 10, 1910 in Elmwood Twp., she married Nelson Ferris, of Alden, born in Charlevoix Co., the son of Alonzo Ferris and Eliza Smith.

Grace married Gilbert Odell, a farmer from Kewadin on February 11, 1907 and subsequently married Alex Holmes on November 10, 1925. Alex was the son of Byron Holmes and Mary Rose Hosler. Although the marriage record says he was born in East Jordan, he was actually born in Echo Township.

Bessie married Floyd Livermore June 15, 1915 and lived in Dearborn, Mi. for many years, moving to Troy after Floyd's death.

The 1910 Census shows Chloe Evaline living in Kalkaska County with Chester and her brother Orvin. She married Alvah Finney at Rapid City on June 10, 1911. He died in 1967 She lived her latter years at the Meadowbrook Care Facility in Bellaire. She was buried in the cemetery at Rapid City. She was preceded in death by two daughters, Marie Cummins and Agnes Pederson and a son, Dan.

Agnes married Theodore B. Pederson, a greenskeeper from Elk Rapids, at Alden on November 1, 1939. She died in 1972 and is buried at the Rapid City cemetery. Daniel was a carpenter. On January 31, 1946 at Alden, he married Arthella Henderson from Mancelona.

Chloe was survived by two daughters, Lulu Authorson of Alden and Arlene Smith of Cedar Springs. On August 11, 1946 at Kalkaska, Arlene married Otto E. Smith, a railroad employee from Elk Rapids. This marriage record indicates that Arlene was born at Kalamazoo.

The 1910 Census shows Iva living with a Henry Anderson. She married Clarence Chichester on September 16, 1916 in Traverse City and died in January 1948. He operated a filling station. Clarence was born in Filer City on July 31, 1893 but had lived in Traverse City since a boy. He died at 55 on August 15, 1949, leaving a daughter, Mrs. Frank Henrick, and two sons, Clarence, Jr. and Jack, all of Traverse City.

Orvin was placed in the Regional hospital in Mt. Pleasant sometime after 1910 and died there. Gladys is my mother. When she was "let out", she came to Mancelona to live with Amanda Updyke. She was actually born Mary Evangeline but Mrs. Updike insisted that she be called "Gladys" because Amanda disliked the name "Mary". Mrs. Updyke subsequently married George Dobbyn and the 1910 census reports my mother in his household. George bought a farm somewhat south of the Lesher farm and Mother went to a school that stood a bit east of the Lesher farm.

She married Clair Johnson August 29, 1917. Their children were:
Eleanor died Dec. 1933
Arden Clair born Dec. 29, 1922
Elden Jan born Dec. 13, 1935

Clair worked at the Antrim Iron Co. and they lived in Mancelona except for a period of time during the depression when they lived on a farm at the top of the hill above the Troyer place and, today, next to Meeder's sawmill.

When the Iron Company closed, they moved to Mt. Pleasant in Oct. 1944. Arden had gone to Detroit in early 1941 after graduation. He served in the Army Air Corp. and returned to Detroit after the war to work for Michigan Bell until he retired.

Elden grew up in Mt. Pleasant and went to Central Michigan University. He retired from Ford Motor Credit Co. in 1994 and moved back to Antrim Co. in May, 1995.

Clair died in 1977 and after some months, Gladys sold her home in Mt. Pleasant and moved to an apartment in Southfield.

The Wood Family information was provided by Elden J. Johnson
I thank him for his contribution to the Antrim Co., Michigan Genealogy pages.

The following information was added by a descendant of Amos Wood. For more info you can contact them at George Edward Hurst III

Amos and Edith Wood
William and Rhoda(Hawley) Wood
George Edward and Mary(Wood) Hurst (Resided in Elk Rapids)
Dr. Arville Edward and Ruth(York) Hurst (Resided in Columbus, GA)
George Edward Hurst II and Martha (Avans) Hurst (Resides in Villa Rica, GA)
George Edward Hurst III "Chip" .... Me

If you would like to contribute your family tree or history to the Antrim pages, please write to Margaret Fallone

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