Sebewa Recollector
Items of Genealogical Interest

Volume 6 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, Bulletin of the The Sebewa Center Association, Bulletin of The Sebewa Center Association, December 1970, Volume 6, Number 3



     Application has been made to the Michigan Historical Commission to have the original James Creighton farm on Clarksville Road designated a Centennial Farm.  James was born in New York state in 1846 and his wife, Elmira J., was born in Pennsylvania in 1848.  In the 1870 census, Daniel, born in Michigan, was listed as their only child.  Some years later there was a newspaper comment that James now had enough sons for his own baseball team.  “Jimmy” expanded his farming to include the operation of an early steam thresher and a sawmill and was familiar as a driver of a Model T Ford. 


     In 1966 the Sebewa Center Association concluded its annual meeting at Sebewa Center with a field trip to Shimnecon in Danby to review the historic Indian settlement there.  We had a ceremonial tree planting of a blue spruce near the grave of Chief Okemos.  I recall making a trip or two there later in the year to water the tree in the dry season.  In the following year it was growing nicely as a 4-foot specimen.

     Revisiting the place this year I find there is no trace of the tree.  It seems to have been lifted from the Old Chief, even without benefit of treaty, as was the Indians’ land more than a century ago.

     Okemos’ stone marker has fared better.  The Dimondale Boy Scout Troop has added a cement base for the stone that was placed there in the Chief’s memory in 1923 by the Ionia County Chapter of the D. A. R. 


     Twenty years ago you might have had to go to one of Michigan’s major cities to find an historical society.  The picture has changed rapidly in the last few years.  As mentioned in these pages before, there are the societies at Lake Odessa and Ionia.  This year has seen the beginning of societies at Sunfield and Portland.  Just beyond this range are groups at Lowell, Hastings, Vermontville and Charlotte.

     At Lowell there is the ambitious project of making a replica of early Fallasburg.  Barry Count Historical Society has the resources of the Charleton Museum and is adding to it with historical buildings.  Vermontville has a local museum of historic artifacts in the Academy building of the Congregational Church.  The Eaton County Historical Society is converting the 1870 Froebel School building in Charlotte to a museum of the county’s history.  The Lake Odessa Area group has extensive current activities of the town, done by Father Moeggenberg.

     The Sunfield Society is shaping a program of research and a recent program on genealogy brought out that there is a branch library in East Lansing where microfilm records of the extensive collection of vital statistics of the Mormon Church may be secured by the public and perused at that branch library.  A nominal fee is charged for the rental of a film.  The Portland Area Society has presented interesting historical programs without yet adopting a constitution or electing officers.  Interested visitors are always welcome at the meetings of all these societies. 

BUSINESS CHANGES IN SUNFIELD SINCE I CAME HERE (1910) Part 3; By Malcom G. Slater (1880-1962)  Written in 1948

     The brick building next west after nearly falling down was torn down.  It was operated by H. H. Mapes and called Star Clothiers, carrying men’s suits and furnishings.  This was before I came here.  Mrs. Mertie Smelker operated some kind of business and owned the building when I came.  Celia Davidson ran an ice cream parlor there once.  I rented the building when I first came to Sunfield.  There was a bakery in the building run by Mr. Blakely, Mr. Brooks and a man from Lake Odessa whose name I do not recall.  Br. Brisboe had a barber shop there and Pat Pierson opened a barber shop there before Brisboe.

     Next west was a small wooden building occupied by Truman Lapman as a barber shop.  Mr. and Mrs. Bacon lived there later.  Devilo McDairmid bought it and lived there for some years.  P. J. Welch had his shoe shop there.  The building was torn down later.

     Next was a two story wooden building occupied by Jack Wilson and Frank DeLand as a ten cent hitch and livery.  Mexican Bill lived upstairs.  The building was remodeled and another part was built to the west, making it a double building used for a feed and livery business.  John Hunt operated it for some time and lived upstairs.  Ben Dilly also operated it until his death and then his son, Orley, took over for a time.  A man by the name of Unrath opened a Buick Sales there and Herman Sherman and Brisbo were salesmen.  Later Harlan Sweitzer ran a business there selling cars.  A Mr. Putman was his salesman.  The building later stood empty until Frank Cornell started a small business there selling clothes.  The building later was torn down.

     Next west was a cement building which was used as the telephone office by Wolf Brothers.  John Palmer later became manager of the telephone company.  Bell Telephone bought the telephone lines and Mike Welch was one of the managers as was Bill Boyland and a man whose name I cannot remember.  It was sold to the Farmers and people of Sunfield by the Bell Company.  The telephone office was moved to the upstairs of the Bascom Building, which is the locker now.  Claude Teachout was the manager up there.  Later the office was moved to the building where it is now.  The cement building was later operated as a cream station by Charles Gilbert.   Charles Walrath had his shoe shop there too.  Finally it was vacated and torn down.

     The next building west was occupied by Cole and Fisk as a hardware until their building was completed across the street.  George Dunham operated a barber shop there.  Also Will Stocum ran the shop.  Skip Dunham learned the trade of his Uncle George there.  Art Thomas and Skip operated a shop for some time with Art selling out to Skip.  Skip and Pat Pierson operated the shop for some time.  Finally the telephone office was installed there and is still there.

     It was all vacant lots up to the VanAntwerp store until John and Charles Campbell built the two story garage, which is there now.  They operated a garage and Ford Sales for some years and closed it out later.  Elmer Shinabarger opened a garage there and was there a short time.  Dennis Joppie opened a garage then and Vet Wohlscheid operated a garage there, living upstairs.  Mrs. Voltz opened her beauty parlor there in the west side.  Vet closed out and H. H. Mapes bought the building for a used furniture store.  Mapes sold it to Murray Hough who ran a garage there for some time.  Now Triplex Engineering is operating there.

     The next building was of two story brick and built by a man by the name of Baker who had a harness shop there.  This was before I came to Sunfield.  When I came, Emmet Van Antwerp and wife ran a grocery and novelty store for years until the death of Mr. Van Antwerp.  Elmer Van Antwerp then opened the store again.  I think Elmer opened the store trice and the last time he called it the Farmers’ Food Basket.  My daughter, Rose, worked for him then.  Elmer sold out to a Mr. Hazelton, who was here a short time.  Elmer operated the store again until he sold to Ralph Shipman.  Mr. McPhail bought the store and building and now operates the store.  Dr. M. A.  Larke had his dental office there and lived upstairs until McPhail bought the building.  I had my optometry office with Dr. Larke for a time after selling my place.

     The next west was the brick house and office built by Dr. T. L. Peacock, who was practicing there when I came.  He sold out and moved to Lansing.  The building was owned by several people after that.  Charles Lundquist owned it and had his home and real estate office there for a time.  At one time Andrew Sayer owned it.  I bought the place of a Mr. Fitzpatrick of New York through his agent from Detroit, a Mr. Scheen.  The place was rented to several people after Mr. Lundquist moved out.  Mrs. Art Litchfield had a rooming house there at one time.  A Mr. Evert lived there when I bought it.  I lived there and operated my optometry practice about twelve years.  I sold to Peter and Guy Mitchell, who live there now.  I moved to Eaton Rapids then in 1945 but have had an office here three days a week since.

     The wooden building next west was occupied by Clanty Derby as an implement store before I came.  Dr. Peacock bought the building after Mr. Derby closed out the business.  He sold the building to Ray Welch.

     The next wooden building was occupied by John Morrisey with a blacksmith and woodshop with buggy and wagon repairing.  Horse shoeing was a big business then.  Henry Southwell, Fred DePue, John  Stambaugh, Sr. and Bona Eldridge worked for John as well as Frank Aves.  Frank operated the shop later.  The business was closed and the building stood empty for some time.  John Stambaugh bought it and tore the building down and is building a cement block building there now.

     The last wooden building on the corner was a double two story building.  I can remember before coming to Sunfield that a Dr. Vanandee had a drug store there and Charley Hampden also ran a store there.  When I came Charles Nauss had a saloon and pool room there.  Then a man by the name of Joe Geiser operated the saloon.  Mr. Geiser died there in their upstairs apartment.  The building was empty for some time except that Perry Hyde lived in one of the upstairs rooms.  J. H. Palmer operated his grain and sales business there for a time.  As I remember, the building burned and Mr. Palmer reopened his business in the wooden building directly across the street mentioned before.  J. H. Campbell and Charles bought the lots and erected the Standard Oil Station there which is operated by them now.  They also built another building for a shop and warehouse there.  Johnnie Geisel was the first station attendant in the Standard station.

     Across the Sunfield Road and next to the railroad track was the grist mill operated by Amos Huelett.  A Mr. Bosworth and Tim Sprinket were partners later.  Roe Huelett operated the mill and coal business for a time.  Then the mill was rented to a Mr. Tolman.  He operated it until the boiler gave out.  The steam engines were sold and the brick engine house and tall brick chimney were torn down.  Smith Bros. Velte & Co. bought the place and operated a feed grinding business for a time.  Mr. Vandeburg bought it, remodeled it to a one story and used it for onion storage.  I hated to see that old steam engine leave….

     Going back south from the drug store, the little office building was there but I do not recall who was in it then.  Later Dr. Mighan had his dental office there until my father and mother bought the house and office.  Dr. Crawford had his office there while my folks owned it and he later moved across the street in the rear of the hotel building.  Orley Baugham has a barber shop there in the hotel building, too.  After Dr. Crawford moved from the wooden office building, Ava and I lived there for a time.  Rose was a baby then.  After we moved out, mother sold the building and eighteen feet of the north lot to Chris Geisel, who lived there for some time.  Frank Cross bought it then and lived there until his death.  His brother, Leonard, then became owner.  William Graff operated his shoe shop there until he left town.  I think Earl Hanna owned the building then.  It was sold to Rolla Franks.  He and his mother, Becky Buell, made their home there.  Becky still lives there.  (I think Dr. Stineburg and family lived there when I came.)

     The house next south was occupied by Dr. Mighan and family until they bought the house where Roy Trim now lives.  My father and mother lived there after that until their deaths.  My sister, Mabel, then became the next owner and now lives there summers.  I have my office there with her.

     Next south was a two story large wooden building occupied by Frank Richard as a blacksmithy and wagon shop.  He sold to Ludwig (Louie) Hahl, who operated the shop for some time, living where Charles Healy lived.  Arthur Litchfield became the owner and operated the shop until his death.  Then the building was sold and torn down.  Mr. Richards and Mr. Hahl both operated dances upstairs for a long time.

     The building on the lot where Mr. Pugh has his house now was occupied by Dr. Mighan as an office after he bought the property.  Later he moved to Lansing.  Charles Healy, Herb Anderson, Rolla Franks and mother lived in the upstairs rooms.  Jake Broombaugh also lived up there and operated a broom factory for some time in the rooms below.

     In the depot article I forgot to mention the pumping station and old water tank for the railroad.  The steam pump was operated by Frank Linhart when I came and before that.  Later, Frank Lumbert, Zal Slater, Will Davidson, Chris Geisel and Perry Hyde operated the pump.  When my father was running the pump, they took down the old tank and water standpipe and erected a new tank 20’ x 30’, resting on cement piers and steel underwork.  The railroad steamers took water from a spout hung from the tank.  When Perry Hyde was operating the pump, the pump house burned down.  Later the tank was removed and the water service for the railroad in Sunfield ceased to exist.

     The townhall is about the same as when I came.  The first electricity Sunfield had was made in the back part of this building.  It was installed by Dolph Wolf and consisted of two Fairbanks 25-horse engines and two generators.  Later another larger engine was added.  Joe Blough was the first operator of the plant.  J. A. and Charles Campbell, Earl VanBuren also worked for them and ran the plant.  Charley Healy ran it until Consumers Power Co. came in with their AC lines.  The engines and generators were sold then.

     The next building north was the Charley Healy livery stable when I came here.  Later Charley commenced to repair automobiles in the north side of the building.  I think there were seven or eight autos owned here then.  P. J. Welch, Sr., A. H. Sayer, Dr. Peacock, Charley Healy, Will Bennett, Roy Welch and John Morrissey were owners.  H. O. Branch had an auto buggy that looked like a regular buggy but had an engine in it.  Healy sold the building to the Mapes Co. who use it as a warehouse now. 


     When our people came in here to the Lake Odessa area I was just one year old.  My mother taught at the Brown School in Woodland Township and was teaching there when she got acquainted with my Dad.  There were three boys in his family who used to cradle grain.  They lived right east of Niles at a place called Morrow Castle.  I was never down there except once.  They cradled and kept cradling to earn a little money and they finally worked clear up here to my Granddad Brown’s.  He owned the farm at the corner of Broadway and Brown Roads.  It was a nice eighty acres and all cleared.  My parents got married and bought a 40 acre lot right beside of a little creek there.  A year or two ago their old lilac bush was still growing there.

     My grandfather was a Scotchman.  He came into this country as a surveyor.  My mother had a brother named John Brown.  He had a black moustache and was dark complexioned.  He was a wonderful guy.  I’d go down there and have more fun than I could have with any kid and he was a man then fifty or sixty years old.  You should have seen this country went my folks moved over here in Odessa when I was a year old.  I was the youngest one of the family.  They used to take me out and set me down beside a brush heap while they cleared that land.  I remember that field right across from the Nye schoolhouse.  It was partly cleared but they had quite a lot of logging to do and stumps to pull.  I remember sitting in that Nye school when I first started, and watching the Indians go by.  They used to come down to the west end of Jordan Lake.  That was a long time before there was any town here and we used to go to Woodland to do our little trading.  If we wanted anything special we had to go clear to Ionia or Saranac.

     Old Doc Crane ran a store on the corner at Bonanza and Horace Miner (he had a crooked nose) had a hotel there then beside Crane’s store.  George Brisband had a blacksmith shop there.  The Moseys had a cider mill there and then there was a stave mill.  When the railroad came through, all of Bonanza moved right up to it.  It was quite a job to move the hotel.

     There was a log house right on the corner at the Odessa Grange Hall (corner of Jordan Lake Road and Bonanza Road) and the family there was named Russell.  Ours was a log house and Aldriches had a log house also.  Across the road there was Wade and he had a little frame house.

     I can remember when they used to send me to town with a little pail of eggs and I’d go down this road where the iceman used to live—that was the old frame house where this town was built and I think his name was Chapman.  They used to have a nice frame house and a nice looking barn and they had it all painted up.  That was impressive to stop and look at that as I went by.  They had a white board fence around it.  I’d waddle along up to Bonanza with the three dozen eggs I could carry in that pail and do a little trading and then I’d go back around the other way on the other road.  I was always tired when I got home and lots of times I’d lie down in a corner of the fence and take a nap.  Sometimes I would stop at my grandmother’s place.  She would cut off a big slice of homemade bread and put cream and sugar on it.  I was always hungry when I got there.  If only I just had a picture of those log houses and rail fences.  The roads in those days—they thought people were crazy for putting a road four rods wide.  The rail fences were so close there was barely room for teams to pass.

     I remember when they built this railroad.  That was something to write home about.  When they surveyed the railroad, they were supposed to put it up on the Johnson place and go north there somewhere near Bonanza.  They couldn’t get the right of way through there.  They fought them and they had quite a time.  The first thing you knew they came right down between the two lakes where everybody had figured they couldn’t build a railroad.  That was all swamp down there.  My two step-brothers got jobs as waterboys on the railroad construction.  Floyd was about my age and Will was two years older.  Will hired out to a gang down by Sunfield.  When they were coming through they would have different gangs of forty or fifty men and then have a waterboy for each group.  Floyd also got a job as a waterboy and that left me home alone.

     When old Wager of Ionia found out they had changed their survey, he came over and bought the Chapman farm.  When I came down through there, they had taken the fence down and had graded Main Street and it looked just like a railroad grade.

There used to be a creek there where Spencer’s store is (vacant store next to Bert’s barber shop).  There was a gate up here in the woods about where the Congregational Church is.  That was the end of Main Street.  From there it was all woods.

     When I finished eighth grade out there at the Nye School and came down here, I was just scared to death of that old Freeman, our teacher.  He combed his hair back and he walked straight and when he went down the street us fellos would really get off the sidewalk.  When I came into the school, he gave an examination and put me into what they called 8 B class.  In this school in Lake Odessa they had only eleven grades so when I finished the school here I had not had chemistry and Latin up here either.  We did not have to take much Latin for pharmacy though we did a little.  Now they have dropped Latin in the drug business.

     We had a band here we thought was pretty good.  We had Mr. Wilcox for a teacher and he was pretty good.  We had two practices a week and we were going right to town with that band stuff.  We used to run around and play for these political meetings and we had a lot of fun.  There were four Gibsons in the band—John, Will, Claude and Leon.  John played the drum and Will played the tuba.  There was Frank Fink that played the baritone and Leon Gilson played the cornet and so did Chalmer.  Pretty soon, in come this Scheidt family from down in Pennsylvania—the whole bunch of them and they were darned good musicians.  They were better than we were and we were pretty jealous of them.  We had been playing for these meetings around and having a wonderful time.  Then when we’d get up to play on the corner where Elfstrom’s store is we’d form on that corner and then the Scheidt fellows would come out down there where the Pickens morgue is now and they would start  up their band and they would play a piece and we’d play a piece.  They had us beat.  I liked their music.

     I took commercial training in Ferris Institute in 1898.  I then came home here and in going back and forth to school and going by Doc Russ’ Drug Store, I just liked the smell of that Drug Store.  There was a smell there that kind of appealed to me.  I finally got interested and I wanted to study pharmacy.  My people fought that.  They said that everybody in pharmacy got to drinking.  They used to have the barrel in the back end of the store in those days.  I finally finished my course up there at Big Rapids in Commercial.  My brother had gone up north on the Pine River and then he had a nice sawmill and he was ten years older than I.

     He said “What are you going to do when you get out of school?”  I didn’t know.  Ferris College would furnish you a job when you got out of school if you wanted it.  My brother said “Why don’t you come up and stay a year with me in the mill?  I believe you would like the lumber business.”  I went up there and I had a lot of fun.  But I still had that pharmacy in my mind.

     So I came home here in the fall of the year and I was going down the street and met Herb Hart.  He said “What are you going to do now?  Why don’t you come down and work with me?”  In those times we had to have four years in a drug store to take the state examination for pharmacy along with two years in college and twelve grades in school.  I went to work for Herb Hart and I got my four years in the drug store.  In the meantime I was telling old George Weed across the street about it.  He said “Why don’t you take up undertaking?  I’ll come over and get you when we have a funeral”.  He’d sneak across and get me and I had it fixed up with Herb Hart to take the time off.  Old George liked to smoke cigars.  He’d sit not far away and he’d have me taking up the artery and veins and Gosh!  I got so I could embalm a body just as good as he could and he let me take care of a funeral out here in Sebewa.  I was doing pretty good.

     About this time there was a place opened up in Caledonia.  I went over there and started up in an undertaking business.  There was an old man over there who was eighty some years old—he even made his own caskets.  I had three funerals in four weeks.  That was pretty good for a beginner.  This old man came in and he wanted to get me out of that town.  I had not really moved in there yet but I had twelve caskets there and I had a store with just a little furniture to start out with.  The old man came in there after I had my three funerals and he was kind of anxious to get rid of me.  He offered me good money to get out of there.  That was kind of a surprise.  I had to have a hearse, harness, and a team that was going to cost me about $2500.  The hardware man there was a good friend of mine and he said “Let me furnish you the money and we’ll go fifty fifty”.  So I called up Dad.

     He said “Nawup, never take a partner.  If you need help, I’ll help you but don’t take a partner”.  But I could sell out and have enough money to put myself through pharmacy.  I already had my four years’ experience in the drug store.  I sold out to the old man and took my money and came home here, packed my grip and went to Big Rapids and started the pharmacy course.  I got through school in 1902 and worked for Doc Russ for a little while and started my store in 1904.  I got $5 a week when I started working in Hart’s drug store.

     When McCartneys came to this town, they came here from Ohio, there was Bill and Hale and they started a grocery store in there just north of Braden’s Drug Store and they had quite a store.  I remember coming to town one day and they had a bunch of bananas out there and I had never seen any before.  I thought that would be swell.  I saved enough money out of the grocery money to buy one of those bananas.  I had to get what the old folks had on their list.  We were not supposed to do anything other than the errands we were sent for.  We were not to go to the barber shops and sit like the other boys and men used to—we were to do our trading and get home.  So I went out here to a corner of the fence and I ate that banana and I was disappointed.  It did not amount to much.

     We used to have a sports ring above that McCartney store.  The Indians used to come here and sell medicine up there.  We had a ring upstairs in the back of the stage.  After that we had a rope ring above Andy Rheam’s saloon.  We had boxing there.  And Boy!  We used to knock one another good over there.  We had fourteen ounce gloves.

     Norm Richards and I had it hot and heavy.  Finally he hit me on the arm and I’ve often wondered why some of those boxers don’t try that trick.  He hit me on the muscle of my arm and I’ll be darned if I could get that arm up any more and then he put it all over me.

     We had a hound and we’d go down here to Dan Shepard’s where he used to run the pavilion down here.  He had two hounds.  We’d get our hound and his two hounds and go rabbit hunting.  Don McLaughlin and preacher Steadman used to like to hunt rabbits.  We had a club here then and we used to choose up sides and go out here and hunt to get rabbits and anything we could get and come in and we’d have a game supper.  We had a live town in those days.  We had a gun club and we had .22 rifles with scope sights on and we used to shoot for turkey and duck.  We had a lot of fun with that.  Riblett and Becker used to go down back of the stores in the alley for target practice and sometimes we shot clay pigeons on the school athletic field.

     After they got the railroad they used to run excursions in here.  The Bosworth pavilion was one of the main attractions.  We used to have a lot of fun down there at the pavilion.  They had roller skating and dancing.  They had a steamboat on the lake.  Sometimes it would conk out or run aground and they would have to get all the little boats out to get it going again.  I think we paid 25 cents to go around the lake with that thing.  They used to have a band on it.  We had a dance club here.  One time somebody squawked on us and claimed to the sheriff we were getting drunk and having too much fun.  When Monte Hildinger saw those policemen there, he put on a show by staggering and falling down on the floor.  He was a clown and put on a good act.

     They used to have a bowery where the A & P Store is on that double lot.  They put the frame up there and they would go out in the spring and cut brush and make a brush roof.  Then on Wednesday nights and Saturday nights they would have an orchestra come in on a stage.  They had some nice dances up there.  That is where I learned to dance.  From the bowery we went down to the McCartney Opera House.  We used to have some darned good dances there, too.

     My brother, Frank, was ten years older than I.  He came to this town after he had that bad luck with his cutter business burning up in Freeport.  He came over here and started that cutter gear business and he was doing well with it.  It was a sled runner gear to put on buggy boxes in place of the buggy wheels you know.  He would run around through the state and sell them and he would come back and make more.  He had my basement to start with and he outgrew that and he went up around Pliny Russell’s (Machine Products Building area) and got a double front store and started making them up there.  A big agricultural concern in Lansing came here and they said they would take all he could make and he would not need to have the expense of running around to sell.  He kept sending them to Lansing and he was doing swell with it.  All at once they commenced to get kind of hard up and be back on their payments a carload or two but he kept on trusting them because he thought they were all OK.  Finally he got in for about $2500 and they went broke and he did too.  That was about 1904.

(These reminiscences were recorded on tape by Robert Reed in 1968 and first published in THE BONANZA BUGLE, bulletin of the Lake Odessa Area Historical Society in their issue of July 1, 1970.  Mr. Nye was feted at an open house at the Lake Odessa Methodist Church by the Historical Society on July 1, 1970.) 


     From the PORTLAND OBSERVER of May 15, 1877.

Wm. Goodrich and Perry Arnold are neighbors living in the township of Sebewa.  Early yesterday morning Mr. Goodrich came to this village and applied to Esq. Cook for a warrant for the arrest of Arnold, presenting in substantiation of his claim a face and head covered with bruises and black spots, and looking as though he had been engaged in a prize fight and had come out second best.

     Goodrich explained how he came by such a fearful looking countenance by stating that Arnold came over to his house on Sunday night as he was about to retire about half past ten, called him downstairs and commenced to abuse him in regard to a team which Goodrich had taken from Arnold’s pasture.  Goodrich said Arnold called him a liar, when he ordered him out of his yard.

     Instead of going, Arnold struck Goodrich in the face, knocking him off the steps, and proceeded to pummel his face in an unmerciful manner, after which he ran away, leaving Goodrich with the blood streaming down his face while Mrs. G. went into a swoon and remained unconscious for several hours.

     Mr. G. explains the cause of the trouble as follows:  Arnold had a span of horses belonging to a man at work in Gunn Bros’ mill, which he had hired to put in his corn.  Goodrich was also preparing to plant and wanted an extra team.  He went and saw the owner of the horses then in Arnold’s possession, who told him he could have them when Arnold got through using them.  He then went and saw Arnold who said he would be through with the team Saturday morning.  On Saturday evening Goodrich sent his boy over after the team, but Arnold refused to let him have it, stating that he wished to harrow his corn ground once more.

     The boy reported this to his father who then went over himself; but Arnold had gone to one of the neighbor’s and Mrs. A. refused to let him have the team.  The next day, Sunday, Goodrich went again to see the owner of the team who, he claims, told him to go get the horses, and furnished him with the halters to lead them from the pasture.  On Sunday evening, during Arnold’s absence, Goodrich went and got the horses and put them in his barn.  Upon returning home and ascertaining that the horses had been taken, Arnold visited Goodrich with the result above stated.

     A warrant was issued for Arnold’s arrest and placed in the hands of officer Mench, who brought him before Esq. Cook yesterday to answer the charges of assault and battery.  Arnold pleaded guilty and after listening to his statement, which agreed substantially with that made by Goodrich in regard to the affray at the house, the Court fined him $25.00 or 50 days in jail.  He was given until this afternoon to raise the money.



     On Monday evening the Hiar family of Sebewa indulged in a free fight.  The cause of the altercation was a kettle of soap, which the elder Mr. H. requested his son, George, to move, in order that the ground where it stood might be plowed, but young H. refused to comply.  On the evening in question, Mr. H. and his wife and his hired man, a Mr. Kibby, met young H. and his wife in the road.  Blows soon followed words, they fighting with canes, clubs and hoe handles.

     Mrs. H. joined freely in the fray.  The old gentleman received a whack on each side of his head that made his pate look as if two horns were just coming through.  Mrs. H.’s digits got to fooling around young Kibby’s head, and made sad inroads in his hair.  Young H. was but slightly wounded.  Mrs. H. received a scalp wound which will keep her confined to the house for a few days.

     Every child that was able to run alone—and the families are prolific—was dispatched for the neighbors, but this was uncalled for, for when the battle was at its height the crash of arms, crying of children, dogs howling and the hoarse cries of the combatants could be heard nearly a mile.  Warrants have been issued for both parties.

     R. J. Hiar was fined $25 and costs amounting to $44.60.

JUNE 15, 1877 – R. J. Hiar, of Sebewa, has appealed the assault and battery suit recently decided against him in the justice court to the Supreme Court.

AUGUST 14, 1877 – R. J. Hiar’s appeal to Circuit Court from Justice Court was discontinued by payment of costs of $20.36 by defendant. 

Do you think these little skirmishes in Sebewa will advance the price of wheat?  There have been some hard fought battles in Sebewa this spring.

Bulletin of The Sebewa Center Association
Robert W. Gierman, Editor
R 1
Portland, Michigan 48875  U. S. A.


Last update May 27, 2013