Sebewa Recollector
Items of Genealogical Interest

Volume 15 Number 3
Transcribed by LaVonne I. Bennett

     LaVonne has received permission from Grayden Slowins to edit and submit Sebewa Recollector items of genealogical interest, from the beginning year of 1965 through current editions.

THE SEBEWA RECOLLECTOR of the Sebewa Center Association,
November  1979, Volume 15, Number 3.  Submitted with written permission of Editor Grayden D. Slowins :


In 1974 the Belding Library under the direction of librarian, Marge McQueen, a granddaughter of John and Anna Lehman who once lived in West Sebewa, sponsored a C. E. T. A. project to catalog the burials in the Belding cemetery.  That project was so well received that Ms. McQueen next directed the project to the Sebewa cemeteries.  The Sebewa listings cover twenty-two pages.  Below is a copy of the first page of that report with no attempt to correct obvious slight errors made by people unacquainted with the area.  Copies of the booklet are at the Belding Library and the State Library.  Grayden Slowins and Robert Gierman have photo copies.  This page is presented as a sample of what is in the booklet.

(By name, Birth & Death Dates, Information, Lot and Grave numbers):

Allen, Agnes, 76 yrs, 7-9-1885, W of R, 32-6
Allen, Jane, 22 yrs, 4-17-1876, D of R & A, 32-8
Allen, Robert, 61 yrs, 11-21-1872, 32-7
Andrews, Floyd Edgar, 1910-1911, 117-1
Arnold, Asa C., 1839, 62-8
Arnold, Cora Daniels, 1866-1927, 57-1
Arnold, Eddie E., 1 yr, 8-12-1880, Son of A C & R, 72-5
Arnold, Rosette, 1839 to 7-1-1908, 72-6
Arnold, William, 12-31-1928, Lot 24
Austin, Forest, Lot 136-7
Austin, Forest Orpha, 136-8
Aves, Charles, 1874 to 7-7-1958, 27-3
Aves, Charles, 1833 to 2-25-1905, 30-6
Aves, Elizabeth (G Ma), 1797-1881, 30-8
Aves, Estella, 1874 to 7-7-1958, 27-3
Aves, Harriet, 1839 to 11-21-1876, 30-5
Aves, Ruth, 9-10-1895, 27-1
Baldwin, George H., 1834-1894, 95-1
Barry, Nettie L. (Baby), 1884-1884, 10-8
Barry, Robert F., 1857 to 11-24-1915, 10-7
Bates, Charlotte, 1842, W of Hosea
Bates, Hosea B., 1833-1901, 86-5
Bera, Theresa Hammond, 1873-1902, W of W, 96-8
Berry, Alpharetta, 1857 to 3-12-1939, W of Robert F., 10-6
Bett, John, 25 yrs, 1-2-1894, 52-6
Bett, Theo, 3 mo, S of S E & G M, 52-8
Bliss, Charlotte M., 1862-1916, 126-8
Bliss, Emma A., 4 yrs, 6-12-1870, D of Samuel & Mary, 126-5
Bliss, Eugene, 1857 to 12-22-1939, 158-8
Bliss, Mary A., 53 yrs, 4-6-1882, 126-6
Bliss, Samuel P., 1827-1906, 126-7
Blossom, Mary J., 1872 to 2-17-1901, W of C W, 135
Blossom, Vera V., 1899 to 5-13-1954, D of C W, 135
Bitterman, George J., 1887 to 2-24-1938, 156-7
Braden, Burley B., 1861-1917, 80-5
Braden, Elvira E., 1872-1934, 8-6
Braden, Elizabeth, 1820-1899, W of Jacob, 90-7
Braden, Jacob, 1819 to 2-26-1881, 90-8
Braden, James A., 1858-1924, 151-1
Braden, Sarah A., 1861 to 5-27-1938, 151-2


Dr. Uncle Samuel Downing’s father’s name was John Downing and his wife’s maiden name was Baird and she was a half-sister to my mother, Indiana (Baird) Downing.  Grandfather Baird’s first wife was a Lee (Sarah or Sallie) and said to be related to Gen. Robert E. Lee, but I don’t know how closely.
She was stolen by the Indians when she was a little girl.  The Indians made a raid on the Lee and Walker families after peace had been made between the Indians and the Whites, and they killed Mr. Lee and Mr. Walker and took the women and children captives.  I am telling this as my mother told it to us when we were children.  I do not remember the time or place it occurred but she said it was a rainy day and the two men had met for the purposes “of casting up their accounts” as she said.
Their homes were near each other.  The Indians took the two men out and tomahawked and scalped them and took a little nine-month-old baby and dashed the head against a tree and left it lying there.  When it was found later it had crawled to where the dead men (father) lay and was asleep.  The child lived to be about twelve years old but was never very bright.
A couple of women who were upstairs spinning at one of the houses hid in a closet and two young men who were in the cornfield were not found.  I think one was a Lee and one a Walker.  Both boys swore vengeance on the Indians and later when an Indian appeared, asking his way, they lured him away and killed him.
On the march through the woods one of the women was bitten by a rattlesnake.  Her foot swelled so that she couldn’t walk.  The Indians killed and scalped her and left her.  The others turned and saw this as did one of the little girls who saw them waving her mother’s scalp around.  I think it was Mrs. Lee as near as I can remember as a little girl.  Sally Lee was given to an old squaw to look after and she said that night while she lay on animal skins in a tent she saw the scalped heads hanging up and her mother’s among the rest.  She cried and cried and the old squaw removed the scalp of her mother.
Her sister, Becky Lee, was also a captive and friends of the Lee family afterwards bought them back from the Indians.  I think Sally Lee was the first.  The man who was in the boat or canoe said they had to slip her away from the old squaw as she was so fond of her.  They shut the old squaw up so she wouldn’t know about it.  As the men went on in the canoe one of the other little girls slipped away and followed along the bank wanting the men to take her along too.  And when they were far enough away they took her in and rowed for dear life until they were out of danger.
Sallie Lee, after she grew to womanhood, married John Baird and they had three children, James, Elizabeth (Betsy) and Sarah Baird.  After his first wife’s death John Baird married Jane Ballard and they had four children, Indiana, Fanny, Rebecca, Jane and John Baird.  Indiana (my mother) was 15 years old when her father (my grandfather) died.  He died of cancer of the nose and was 57 years of age.  Uncle Jim (half-brother of my mother) was married twice.  His wife’s maiden name (first wife) was Durham (Aunt Thursa). Elizabeth or Aunt Betsy married Uncle Sam Downing and Sarah married Uncle John Arthur.  My mother, Indiana, and her sister Rebecca, married brothers, my father, Robert Jackson Downing and Jason Downing.  According to my recollection, Grandfather Downing and family came from South Carolina to Ohio, stopping for a while in Kentucky in the spring of 1813 and two years later in Ohio.
My father was born near Lexington, Bourbon County, Kentucky, June 20, 1815 and was one year old when they came to Ohio and settled in what was then a wilderness, building a log cabin just above where the old spring is, on the old farm which is now owned by cousin Robert F. Downing.
Grandfather Downing was born December 7, 1776 in Chester County, South Carolina and died May 14, 1870.  Grandma’s great grandfather was 93 years old.  He was married to Margaret Faris who was born in Ireland, County Antrim, on August 9, 1783 near the Giants Causeway.  She died February 13, 1864, aged 81 years. 

Grandfather Baird was of Irish descent also.



Last update November 16, 2013