Sebewa Recollector
Items of Genealogical Interest

Volume 27 Number 4
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 Bulletin of the Sebewa Association,
FEBRUARY 1992, Volume 27, Number 4
Submitted with written permission of Editor Grayden D. Slowins:


FLORENCE J. ECKARDT, 96, daughter of Kate Seybold & John Henderson, granddaughter of James Henderson, sister of Mildred Hall and Marion, Olive, Ethel, and James Henderson II, widow of Karl Eckardt, and mother of Joyce Scott and Bruce Eckardt. The Hendersons were a pioneer family at the northwest & southwest corners of State Road & Henderson Road in Odessa Township, and were generally considered to be part of the West Sebewa Community, especially back when they got their mail at that Post Office.

ROBERT D. BURNS, 79, husband of Helen, father of Maggie, Barbara, and James, brother of Florence, George and Stewart. A long-time member of our Association, he had been Clerk of Danby Township.

HATTIE FARRELL, 98, daughter of Jay & Sophia Eldridge, daughter of Louis Slowinski, son of Daniel Slowinski Sr. & Anna Schnabel. She was a widow of Ray D. Farrell, mother of Alta Mae Frost, Raymond J. & Charles Farrell. She had been a telephone operator in Lake Odessa, cook in a U.P. logging camp, and they farmed the John Klintworth place, Sec. 34 Sebewa, 1923-1937, before buying their own farm Sec. 30 Odessa.


Johann Jakob Spitzley & Anna Kloeckner Spitzley were the first Spitzleys to arrive in Westphalia, MI. Johann Jakob was born in Arft, Province of Prussia, Germany, January 8, 1801, died in Westphalia, MI, February 22, 1878, son of Johann Spitzley and Anna Marie Gilles. Anna Marie Kloeckner was born in Langenfeld Province, Germany, April 3, 1800, died in Westphalia, MI, February 13, 1878, daughter of Johann Hubert Kloeckner & Anna Gertrude Muller. They were married November 28, 1820, and emigrated to Westphalia in 1846, after all their children were born.

The original homestead is located at the NE corner of Price & Clintonia Roads, two miles west of downtown Westphalia and just into Clinton County, and is still in the family. The inventory of their estate shows:
80 acres land – W1/2 SW1/4 Sec. 6 T6N R4W ---$4000.00
Three cows - 60.00
Two horses - 100.00
One wagon - 10.00
Three hundred bushels wheat - 315.00
One hundred fifty bushels oats - 30.00
Nineteen sheep - 55.00
Total $4570.00

1. Anna Gertrude Spitzley, 1822-1877, married Peter J. Halfmann.
2. Marie Katherine Spitzley, 1826-1901, married Frank Schneider.
3. Anna Maria Spitzley, 1832- ?, married Michael Schlicht.
4. Michael Spitzley, 1834-1912, married Suzane Simon.
5. Anton Spitzley, 1837-1918, married Mary Catherine Schmitt.
6. Maria Spitzley, 1842-1846, died enroute to MI.

4) Michael Spitzley, born in Arft, Prussia, March 5, 1834, died in Westphalia, MI, May 1, 1912, son of John Jakob Spitzley & Anna Maria Kloeckner, was married February 13, 1855, to Suzane Simon, born in Germany, September 1, 1838, died in Westphalia, MI, August 23, 1906, daughter of Peter Simon & Anna Maria Berzen. They farmed for 10 years, and then he became a storekeeper, first president of Westphalia State Bank, and first president of Westphalia Village.

1. Mary Spitzley, 1856-1935, married John Thelen.
2. Anna Spitzley, 1860-1895, married Michael Pohl,
3. Catherine Spitzley, 1863-1928, married John Pohl.
4. Margaret Spitzley, 1885-1928, married John Thelen & John Rademacher.
5. Mathias Spitzley, 1867-1921, married Mary Schafer.
6. Elizabeth Spitzley, 1869-1943, married Henry Theis.
7. Rosina Spitzley, 1871-1921, married Mary Schafer.
8. Michael Spitzley, 1873-1944, married Josephine Arens & Gertrude Gross Koster.
9. Suzanna M. Spitzley, 1876-1877.
10. John B. Spitzley, 1878-1960, married Elizabeth Fandel & Ross Willems.
11. Joseph A. Spitzley, 1880-1969, married Elizabeth Pung.
12. Theresa Spitzley, 1882-1966, married Ignatz Koenigsknecht.

2)ANNA SPITZLEY, born in Westphalia, MI, December 16, 1860, died in Westphalia, MI, December 16, 1860, died in Westphalia, May 16, 1895, daughter of Michael Spitzley & Suzane Simon, was married to Michael Pohl, born in Westphalia, March 17, 1857, died in Westphalia, December 31, 1914.
1. William N. Pohl, 1887-1970, married Josephine Knoop & Rose Barton.
2. Katie A. Pohl, 1889-1889.
3. John A. Pohl, 1890-1977, married Theresa Knoop.
4. Catherine Pohl, 1893-1980.
5. Mary M. Pohl, 1895-1895.

1) William N. Pohl, born in Westphalia, December 2, 1887, died in Portland, May 2, 1970, son of Anna Spitzley & Michael Pohl, was married October 21, 1913, to Josephine Knoop, born in Westphalia, June 14, 1892, died in Portland July 18, 1933, daughter of Henry Knoop & Josephine Schneider. William was then married to Rose Barton. They farmed on Emery Road in Danby Township.
1. Linus Pohl, 1915- , married Irene Thelen.
2. Anna Pohl, 1920 - , married Alfred Thelen, parents of Ron, George & Phil of Sebewa.
3. Florence Pohl, 1925 - married Gregory Thelen.
4. Agnes Pohl, 1929- , married Alfred Schneider.
5. Janet Pohl, 1932-PHS50, married Marvin Fedewa.
6. Mary Pohl, 1933- , married Joseph Simon.

5) MATHIAS SPITZLEY, born in Westphalia, June 13, 1867, died in Westphalia, January 21, 1921, son of Michael Spitzley & Suzane Simon, was married April 28, 1891, to Maria Schafer, born February 12, 1871, died in Westphalia, December 9, 1957. He ran Westphalia Hardware Co, and sold agricultural implements, at the northeast corner of the main intersection in Westphalia. Their home was a quarter mile east and had 16 rooms including 9 bedrooms for their sixteen children:
1. William M. Spitzley1892-1975, married Seraphine Martin.
2. Suzanne Spitzley, 1893-1986, married Isador Thelen.
3. Regina K. Spitzley, 1895-1895.
4. Anna Spitzley, 1895-1983, married Julius C. Thelen.
5. Albert Spitzley, 1897-1960, married Mary Miller.
6. Infant female, 1898-1898.
7. Anthony Spitzley, 1899-1981, married Theresa Pohl.
8. Rosa Spitzley, 1900- , married Julius J. Thelen.
9. Edward Spitzley, 1902-1984, married Marcella Rademacher.
10. Herman Spitzley, 1904- , married Daroline Wohlscheid.
11. Louise Spitzley, 1906- , married Aloys Platte.
12. Isadore Spitzley, 1907-1970.
13. Harold Spitzley, 1909-1967.
14. Roman Spitzley, 1910-1973, married Eleanor Fink.
15. Norman Spitzley, 1910- , married Maria Fedewa.
16. Theodore Spitzley, 1912-1913.

1)WILLIAM SPITZLEY, born in Westphalia, April 17, 1892, died in Portland, October 31, 1975, son of Mathias Spitzley & Maria Schafer, was married September 12, 1916, to Serephine Martin, born October 19, 1891, daughter of John Joseph Martin & Catherine Fedewa. They owned Portland Hardware Co., which they started as a branch of Westphalia Hardware. Their children were:
1. Carl Mathias Spitzley, 1918 - , married Ann Zimmerman.
2. James Louis Spitzley, 1919- , married Phyllis Williams.
3. Thomas Albert Spitzley, 1922-1986, married Rose Mary Wolfert.
4. William Joseph Spitzley, 1927 - , married Gladys Brown, of Sebewa.
5. Alice Marie Spitzley, 1934-PHS’52, married Robert L’Hullier.

8) MICHAEL SPITZLEY, born in Westphalia, MI, November 6, 1873, died in Westphalia, September 10, 1944, son of Michael Spitzley & Suzane Simon, was married January 21, 1896, to Josephine Arens, born March 17, 1874, died in Westphalia, October 14, 1913, daughter of Joseph Arens & Mary Thome. Then he was married April 12, 1915, to Gertrude Gross Koster, born January 5, 1876, died Spetember 10, 1944, 20 minutes before Mike, daughter of John Gross & Anna Maria Thelen. Michael worked in town most of his life, first in the general store and then in the bank founded by his father and later with his brother John B. Spitzley, bank president.
1. Michael J. Spitzley, 1897-1958, married Rose Pung.
2. Leo A. Spitzley, 1899- , married Theresa Fox.
3. Edwin Spitzley, 1904-1940, married Agnes Blizzard.
4. Hildegard Spitzley, 1906-1984, married Carl Bollman.
5. Pauline Spitzley, 1908-1969, married Julius Galvanek.
6. Josephine Spitzley, 1913 - , married Julius Wirth.
7. Laurine Spitzley, 1916- , married Martin Edinger.
8. Adelaide Spitzley, 1918-1969, married Robert Wirth.

2) LEO A. SPITZLEY, born in Westphalia, May 11, 1899, son of Michael Spitzley & Josephine Arens, was married February 6, 1923, to Theresa Fox, born in Westphalia, December 20, 1901, daughter of Steven Fox & Elizabeth Thelen. Leo was a farmer, first in Berlin Township on Ainsworth Rd. a quarter mile north of Eddy School, now in State Park, and many years on the Ben Sykes farm, next to the Laban Smith farms at SW corner Goodwin Rd. & Divine Hwy.
1. Leo M. Spitzley, 1924 - , married Mary Ann May.
2. Robert S. Spitzley, 1925- , married Laurine May.
3. Harold S. Spitzley, 1926-PHS’45, married Germaine Martin.
4. Philip J. Spitzley, 1929-PHS’46, married Elizabeth Breimayer, and now living in Sebewa.
5. Joan J. Spitzley, 1930-PHS’48, married Carl Simon & Ed Schmitz.
6. David E. Spitzley, 1932-
7. Wilma I. Spitzley, 1933-
8. Roy C. Spitzley, 1935-
9. Jerome P. Spitzley, 1938-1970.
10. Alvin R. Spitzley, 1940- .
11. Alice I. Spitzley, 1941-1983, married Louis Esch.

5)ANTON SPITZLEY, born in Arft, Prussia, December 11, 1837, died in Westphalia, MI, December 8, 1918, the other son of Johann Jakob Spitzley & Anna Maria Kloeckner, was married January 20, 1863, to Mary Catherine Schmitt, born in Germany, December 23, 1842, died in Westphalia, October 31, 1927, daughter of John Schmitt & Clara Sauer. Anton Spitzley farmed the land where his father had homesteaded, at Price & Clintonia Roads in Westphalia Township.
1. William Spitzley, 1864-1949, married Mary Thelen.
2. Mary Theresa Spitzley, 1867-1896.
3. John J. Spitzley, 1869-1934, married Anna Hauck.
4. Theresa Spitzley, 1870-1960, married Peter Thelen.
5. Joseph Spitzley, 1876-1956, married Catherine Hufnagel & Biretta Fitzmorris.
6. Frank Spitzley, 1879-1934, married Betty Martin.
7. Clara Spitzley, 1882-1974, married John Hufnagel.
8. Susan Spitzley, 1885-1974, married Anthony Goodman.
9. Baby Anthony Spitzley, 1888-1888.
10. Baby Peter Spitzley, ?-?

1)WILLIAM SPITZLEY, born in Westphalia, MI, December 4, 1864, died in Portland, January 11, 1949, son of Anton Spitzley & Mary Catherine Schmitt, was married October 30, 1888, to Mary Thelen, born in Portland, September 17, 1870, died in Portland, February 2, 1972, daughter of Peter Thelen & Anna Pung. William & Mary farmed on David Hwy., 3 ½ miles west of Westphalia where Larry Keilan and Pliney Stump own now, as much as 480 acres. Most of the work was done with horses until they got a McCormack-Deering two plow tractor.
1. Theresa Spitzley, 1889- , never married.
2. Catherine Mary Spitzley, 1891-1991, married Tony Willems.
3. Anthony Spitzley, 1893- ?, never married.
4. Anna Spitzley, 1894- , married George Miller.
5. Arnold Spitzley, 1896-1959, married Anna Bengel.
6. Louis A. Spitzley, 1897-1983, married Theresa Bengel.
7. Henry Spitzley, 1899-1974, never married.
8. Isador Spitzley, 1900-1901.
9. Ida Spitzley, 1902 - , married Joseph Fox.
10. Pauline Spitzley, 1904-1910.
11. Amelia Spitzley, 1906- , married Andrew Tanghe
12. Rosella Spitzley, 1909 - , married Victor Huhn.
13. Laurina Spitzley, 1911- , Sister Mary Antonio.
14. Genevieve Spitzley, 1913- , married Donald Clark.

2) CATHERINE MARY SPITZLEY, born in Westphalia, September 13, 1891, died in Grand Rapids, December 29, 1991, daughter of William Spitzley & Mary Thelen, was married to Anthony Peter Willems, born February 26, 1889, died May 18, 1956. They farmed on Frost Road, Portland.
1. Donald J. Willems, 1917 -, married Jean Steward.
2. Mary E. Wiliems, 1921- , married Francis Mercer.
3. Ethelene M. Willems, 1923- , married Lee Lillie.
4. Margery Willems, 1927- , married Robert Smith.
5. Charles L. Willems, 1931-PHS’50.

5) JOSEPH SPITZLEY, born in Westphalia, February 1, 1876, died in Portland, September 20, 1956, son of Anton Spitzley & Mary Catherine Schmitt, was married October 17, 1899, to Catherine Hufnagel, born in Westphalia, November 22, 1877, died in Portland July 18, 1916, daughter of Anton Hufnagel & Helena Hanses. He then married Biretta Warnick Fitzmorris. He farmed first on Marselle Rd. near Clintonia Rd. Sec. 24 and then SW ¼ Sec. 27 within the village of Portland on Looking Glass Ave., now owned by nephew Robert Goodman.
1. Anthony Spitzley 1900- , married Louise Martin.
2. Mary K. Spitzley 1902- married Norman Lay.
3. Leona Spitzley 1903- , married George Miller.
4. Elizabeth Spitzley 1905- , married Sylvester Pung.
5. Katherine Spitzley 1907- , married Donald Weidman.
6. Helen T. Spitzley 1911- , married Henry Alling.

2) MARY K. SPITZLEY, born in Portland, March 14, 1902, daughter of Joseph Spitzley & Catherine Hufnagel, was married January 25, 1921, to Norman Lay, born in Williamston, March 3, 1896, son of Henry Lay & Anna Thelen. They farmed on Ionia Road, Portland.
1. Annett Lay, born 1932-PHS’50, married Eugene Snitgen.
2. Ivan Lay, born 1936- .

4) ELIZABETH SPITZLEY, born in Portland, February 4, 1905, daughter of Joseph Spitzley & Catherine Hufnagel, was married to Sylvester Pung, son of John Pung & Julie Simon. They farmed on Keefer Hwy. S ½ Sec. 1 Sebewa Township, where their son Joe is now.
1. Catherine Pung, 1925- .
2. Joseph Pung, 19?? .
3. Mary Jane Pung, 1930-PHS’48.
4. Ronald Pung, 1933-PHS’51.
5. John David Pung, 1943- .

6) FRANK SPITZLEY, born in Westphalia, December 5, 1879, died in Westphalia, March 12, 1934, son of Anton Spitzley & Mary Schmitt, was married June 8, 1909, to Mary Martin, born in Westphalia, May 27, 1886, died in Westphalia, May 26, 1935, daughter of Peter Martin & Elizabeth Cook. Frank was the youngest son and last to marry, so he stayed on the homestead, along with another 120 acres on Goodwin Rd. Sec. 13, Portland Township. The building pictured being moved with Alfred Bauer’s Rumely Oil-Pull tractor was going to that farm, a mile south of the home place.
1. Dorothy Spitzley, 1909- , married Arnold Nurenberg.
2. William J. Spitzley, 1913- , married Katherine Shepherd.
3. Martin J. Spitzley, 1915-1966, married Lillian Geller.
4. Estelle Spitzley, 1918- , married Roman Schafer.
5. Richard C. Spitzley, 1920- , married Dorothy Johnson.
6. Marie F. Spitzley, 1922- , married Gerald Wrocklage.

2) WILLIAM J. (JIM) SPTIZLEY, born in Westphalia, October 16, 1913, son of Frank Spitzley & Mary Martin, was married to October 21, 1939, to Katherine Shepherd, born in Portland, August 27, 1918, daughter of LeRoy Shepherd & Mary E. Grenier.
1. Francis J. Spitzley, 1940- .
2. Dennis W. Spitzley, 1942- .
3. Susan K. Spitzley 1943- .
4. Patricia A. Spitzley, 1944- .
5. Phyllis M. Spitzley, 1947- .
6. Mary L. Spitzley, 1952- .
7. Lawrence E. Spitzley, 1952- .

1) FRANCIS J. SPITZLEY, born in Portland September 14, 1940, son of William J. (Jim) Spitzley & Katherine Shepherd, was married April 18, 1964, to Charlene Culman, born November 18, 1945, daughter of Robert Culman & Mary Watkoski. They were divorced and he was married on December 4, 1981, to Carole Owens Kirby, daughter of Ray Owens.
1. Gregory Scott Spitzley, 1965-
2. Dawn Marie Spitzley, 1966-
3. Karen Marie Spitzley, 1968-

7) LAWRENCE E. SPITZLEY, born in Ionia, July 5, 1952, son of William J. (Jim) Spitzley & Katherine Shepherd, was married July 30, 1982, to Pamela Gierman Mullen, born April 20, 1951, daughter of Maynard & Helen Gierman, formerly of Sebewa.
1. Camille Spitzley, 1977 - .
2. Mathew Steven Spitzley, 1984 - .

This story on the Spitzley family may seem long, yet it only scratches the surface. We selected one or two members of each generation to carry down, because we were surprised how many of our classmates in Portland High School were first, second, or third cousins to each other (Note PHS-50 etc.) If you want to know more, contact Thomas L. Spitzley, son of Leo, son of Michael, son of Michael, son of Johann Jakob. His book THE SPITZLEY FAMILY, has 490 pages like this and fills two thick volumes. His address is 801 W. St. Joe Hwy., Grand Ledge, MI. Phone (517) 627-5293.

Two photos in this book are of the Johann Jakob Spitzley & Anna Maria Kloeckner farm, another is of the William Spitzley farm, one of the Mathias Spitzley implement business, and one of the Westphalia State Bank. We will show as many as we have room. The one most interesting to me is of a tractor hauling a hog building thru the main intersection of Westphalia to the Frank Spitzley farm about 1912-1914. The tractor is a Rumely Oil-Pull, a kerosene-fired steam engine owned by Alfred Bauer. I started out on the threshing crew behind this very engine and a Red River Special Grain Separator in 1942, at age 10!

The bronze plaque has been restored to its place at County Farm Cemetery, after being pried from its stone, stolen, and then found.
David Vollink, the Eagle Scout candidate who restored the door at Sessions School, has received his Eagle rank in a December ceremony at Saranac School. He is son of Pamela & William Robinson and Karen & Laurence Vollink, grandson of Sherm & Muriel Pranger, grand-nephew of Marjory Carr, great-grandson of Cornelius Vandenberg & Kristina Pranger.

One hundred years ago, Thomas J. Bandfield was increasing the size of his furniture factory in Portland. He was a cabinet & coffin-maker who first worked in the back-room of his furniture store on Kent St. Eventually he expanded into the building where Barley’s are today. He had a large kiln for quality hardwood lumber and some of us have center tables and other pieces made there. So do the antique shops in Portland, at a pretty price if the label is intact!

Sandy & John FISHER have a beautiful homestead about a mile east of Sunfield, where her parents – the Keith HOUGHS – used to live. The 80-acre farm was homesteaded by her great-great-grandfather. Sandy heads an architectural & construction firm that recently built the East Jordan Iron Works distribution center across the road. John is a vehicle development consultant at B-O-C and an Eaton County Commissioner.



Last update November 15, 2013