Jessie Fuller Hoover
Gram (Jessie Fuller Hoover) wrote: "This is a copy of the history of the Fuller family as written by my grandfather, James Harland Fuller. The narrative was begun in 1901 when he had reached the age of 80 years and was written entirely from memory. I can remember my grandmother (Mary Ann L. Bonney) helping him with the birthdates and anecdotes of their lives while they were living in Michigan).
Having arrived at the age of 80 years and finding myself father of two daughters and three sons, each of whom have families, aggregating 17 in number, with a large number of nephews and nieces, who, having families of their own, have expressed a desire to know something of their ancestry, I have been persuaded to write out as much as I know in regard to that subject for their benefit.
But when I consider that there still survive 17 nephews and nieces (and many of them are already grandparents) to make a complete Family Record will be no small task. So shall not expect to make a complete record in all its branches but rather a short biographical sketch of my own life and incidentally a portion of the lives of my relatives.
My first recollection was in the State of New York, Wayne Co, Township of Galin, one mile
Speaking of snow, it may be well enough to remark that one winter snow fell to the depth of at least two feet and we had sleighing for three whole months.
Such times when the snow was deep, after a warn sunny day, it would freeze at night forming a crust that we could walk on and I have known it to get so as to hold cattle and horses.
Then was the time for riding down hill by moonlight. All the boys and girls too, big and little, with sleds and slides of all sorts and descriptions (a splendid one could be made of about three old pork barrel staves, fastened together near each end with a cleat) would repair to the favorite spot on the hill in the pasture where any desirable incline was furnished by Nature from the gentle slope of a quarter of a mile or by taking to the right, it was much steeper but shorter, and there an hour or two of genuine sport, muscle and mind enlarging sport was indulged in, as I have ever known.
Now every one of those boys and girls was dressed in clothes made by their mothers or themselves. Every girl above the age of twelve years know how to spin and knit.
Their shoes were waterproof and high enough to protect and keep the ankles dry and with home made mittens, they could bid defiance to the clear, still, zero weather.
The hills ran parallel to the river at our place. They were about ¾ of a mile apart, with the river and Erie Canal between them, the canal and river being only a few rods apart.
The river was the outlet of Canandaguia Lake and was about such a stream as the Washo of Kansas or the Raisin of Michigan at Monroe. (This river must be the Canandaguia altho he doesn't say.)
My father's farm of one hundred acres was bounded on the west by the hill and on the east by the river. The public road ran near the foot of the hill and was on level ground and straight. From the house, the land sloped gently to the river so that both river and canal were in full view for a mile or more.
Clyde was a thrifty village containing a Grist mill, saw mill, Fulling mill (for fulling cloth) Glass factory, Tanyard, two blacksmith shops, cooper shop; school house, three churches, several stores and such other things as go to make a town of 1500 or 2000 people.
It was a canal town. There had formerly been a company of soldiers stationed at the Ford, as it was called, and the old block house and barracks altho deserted, were still standing.
I suppose the Glass Factory must have employed fifty or more men at the time. Politically, when Mr. Fields came riding by one day, where three of us boys were playing by the side of the road, he said, "Hurrah for Jackson!" and we all answered, "Hurrah for Adams" and he laughed so heartily that it made an impression on my mind that still remains. That must have been in 1828 when I was seven years old
It was about that time, perhaps not the same year, we were out at the spring in front of the house. A man came along on foot, got a drink of water, and commenced talking in an earnest manner about what he could tell and see. He finally showed a small, flat, smooth stone. In color, it looked to me like slate with two holes through it about 1/4 inch in diameter and just about far enough apart to accommodate the eyes. He put that stone in his hat and took hold of one of the men's hands, put his face in the hat so as to shut out the light and after a little, began to tell the man what he saw in England. The man whose hat he held had come from England the year before.
It seemed too strange to me. When he had gone, I heard Father tell Mother that was Joe Smith from Palmyra or Shortsville. There has been a great deal said about Joe Smith since that time for he was the founder of the sect called Latter Day Saints or Mormons. He furnished his follower with a Bible of their own and was afterwards killed at Carthage, Illinois, by his enemies.
There have been so many changes in the habits, customs, and mode of living since my childhood that it may not be amiss to note some of them by a brief description of the mode that prevailed at that time. In the first place every family that could do so provided itself with a supply of provisions for a year. Pork, where I lived, was put in barrels and covered with a strong brine, beef was put away in a similar manner. For fresh meat, pigs, chicken, and turkey, goose, or duck, was considered a part of the education necessary for the qualification of a useful life.
Potatoes, turnips, beets, carrots, and parsnips with cabbage were stored in sufficient quantities to last as long as each would keep or until the garden supplied their place the next spring. On farms, if anything was left over, the stock got it. Potatoes made fine food for cows or ewes with lambs. The year's supply of wheat was stored in granaries and was taken to the mill to be ground as needed. The miller ground the wheat for 1/10, also rye, buckwheat, and corn. Tomatoes and canned fruit were unknown as foods. Fruit of all kinds was dried.
As to clothing. The whole family was clothed with cloth made by themselves and consisted of wool and flax, which was made into linen cloth. Men raised sheep and most of the wool was carded by machine although every housewife had hand cards for both wool and tow and knew how to use them, too. Women provided themselves with bedding, homemade of the best quality, with very little cost in money, even to trimming pillowcases with ruffles or edging as fashion demanded.
Cooking was done at the fireplace. The brick oven was a indispensable article as stoves for cooking had not been invented. For baking, potatoes, biscuit, rye and Indian bread, etc., an iron kettle with legs and cover was used; one that could be set down before the fire, covered with coals on top and beneath, it would do as nice baking as anything that has ever been invented, especially bread made of corn meal of rye flour. It is not to be supposed for a moment that the average American of the middle class has improved in his living the last sixty years, for it is a mistake. It's true there is more coffee and tea used also more pastry but less milk and cider.
Perhaps the change in the mode of transportation and communication shows more marked improvement than in any other direction. The stagecoach or the packet on the Canal that could make eighty miles in twenty four hours were the most rapid means of transit, known at that time, unless we except the horse back carrier with his relay of horses at convenient distances called stations. He, having a regular route would pass a given point at about the same time each day, and being provided with a tin horn, was eagerly looked for and awaited by the children of the family, of which there was usually a large number. No disgrace in those days to have a large family.
Those people never dreamed that during the life time of their children then living, it would be possible to perform a journey of 800 or 1000 miles with less fatigue that 100 miles could be performed in a stagecoach at that time, but it's true.
The Canandaguia outlet furnished an abundance of good fish. Catfish, pickerel, pike, black and rock bass, eels, mud cats, perch and sun fish were the most common. We little fellows learned to catch fish and paddle a canoe very young and took great delight in being about the water. When only ten years old, I could stand on a single slab and paddle it all about like a boat.
There had been a constant stream of emigrants moving by canal since my first recollection and many of our neighbors had sold their farms to people that came from the region of Albany, Utica, and Mohawk Valley. We knew them as Mohawk Dutch and those of our neighbors had moved to Allegheny and Chatasigua Co. There had been a large number of English and Scotch emigrants who mostly stopped in the village of Clyde and went into business of various kinds.
About the year of 1830 our neighbors that sold out went into Ohio and Michigan. That year Oscar McLouth, a cousin of mine, next year a cousin of my mother, Thomas Herrington with his family and Lyman and Calvin Gilmore. Lyman Gilmore afterwards married Thomas Herrington's oldest daughter, Almeda.
In 1832 a neighbor and old acquaintance, William Dillon and another cousin of mother's, William Davis, went to Michigan and settled in what is now Township of York, Washtenaw Co. William Fuller a cousin of mine went to Michigan with Dillon as hired man.
In the year 1833, my father sold his farm and moved with all his family and bought land of the government to the same neighborhood with those mentioned above in Michigan. Michigan at that time was a territory and did not become a state for several years.
This was the beginning of a new chapter in my life. There were no roads, a very few mills, mostly a heavy timbered country very free from stone, well watered, and supplied with an abundance of the very best building timber that I have ever seen. Oak of various kinds, white wood, cotton wood, bass wood, ash, black walnut, butternut, sugar maple, soft maple, elm, sycamore, and where we settled very level, just a gradual descent to the lake at Monroe 25 miles away without a hill ten feet high the whole distance. I should have named hickory, both shell bark and yellow bud as timber that was valuable in a new country.
The first thing to be done was to locate and buy land. No roads in the immediate neighborhood, only as each one made a track moving in.
My father finally secured 480 acres of land, one quarter section upon which he built and had a small stream of living water flowing across it. The little stream is flowing yet and so small, that ordinarily a person can step across it anywhere. It is fed by springs and has its source about two miles above.
The country was well supplied with wild animals. Deer, bear, wolves, also plentiful supplies of wild turkeys and partridges. There was little difficulty in getting venison at that time. The older members of the family, that is my father and two brothers succeeded in killing forty-three deer during the first two months in Michigan, so that we had plenty of fresh neat.
In moving to Michigan, our household goods and family were put on a canal boat and landed in Buffalo. There they were transferred to a Lake steamer and after crossing Lake Erie, landed in Detroit. The horses and wagon were driven to Buffalo by my brother Alva, accompanied by a young man of our acquaintance named John Hailly who went to Michigan with us. At Buffalo the horses and wagon were put on board the steamer, so at Detroit we had a team and wagon to take the folks the remainder of the way. This required two days, the distance being forty miles.
We stayed the first night with Mr. Davis on the Uncle Othniel Gooding farm but soon moved into Mr. Dillon's house as his wife had died leaving him without a housekeeper. This is the farm that Oscar Loveland and his son and daughter own.
The time of year was October and it was the next month, while we were still living of that place, that the most noted meteoric display took place that has ever been recorded. October 1833. I was called about two o'clock in the morning to witness it. It really looked as if the stars were falling to the earth by the thousands.
My father's parents and himself were natives of the State of New York. My father was born in Dutchess Co, near Fishkill Landing above New York City, December 12, 1872. He had three brothers and one sister older than he. One of his brothers (I think his name was Abial the same as my grandfather's name) I have been told moved to Vermont. Another moved to the state of Pennsylvania about the year 1800. My grandfather (Fuller) with his married son, Jesse, and married daughter, Lydia (whose husband's name was Jesse Flewelling) moved into Wayne Co, New York and improved a farm of 50 acres. Jesse Fuller and Jesse Flewelling were shoe makers and followed that trade as long as they lived.
(Note: James Harland Fuller's parents are Levi Fuller and Doraxa McLouth)
My mother and her parents were natives of Massachusetts, Berkshire, Co, township of Cheshire. She was born Daraxa McLouth, September 21, 1789. My grandfather's name was John McLouth. He was a soldier of the Revolutionary War of 1776 and at the close of the war, held an order of Sergeant's Commission. My grandmother's name was Sarah Pierce. They were far more careful of their genealogy, were of Scotch Irish descent but I have no record.
Irene A. Fuller and Sheldon B. Throop
James Harland Fuller, the writer hereof, married Mary A. Bonney the 24th of October, 1844. Have been married 57 years at this writing. Have reared five children, Irene, Mary A., Lester J., Elon G. and Levi C.
Irene married Sheldon B. Throop about 1866. They have five living children. Nelle, James C., Howard, Bernice, and Grace.
Elon G. married Lucy Harvey 1880. Left two children at her death, Jessie and Ray. He married Allie Craig and has one son, Frank born 1890.
There is one peculiar feature about the Fuller family. So far as I know, there have been no divorces. The men have been kind considerate husbands while the girls have made kind considerate mothers. Taken all together, I don't know of a family as numerous as the Fullers in all its branches that has got along with less strife and that have been uniformly good
THE McLOUTH AND PIERCE FAMILIES
The McLouth and Pierce families on my mother's side were a very different kind of family, for while they were an intellectual family, they were much inclined to want to dominate and dictate to other people and could not book opposition. This, accompanied by a strong desire for the accumulation of wealth disqualified some of them as good neighbors and often led some of them into disagreeable situations in the communities where they lived. The Pierces that I am acquainted with, Nathan and Darius and their sister Polly Mitchell, were above the average intellectually and financially. In fact, had few superiors.
Nathan and Darius had much influence in shaping the constitutional and legislative departments of the state government as both were in the legislature for years and Nathan, at least, a member of the first state constitutional convention.
As a family, the McLouth's were equally intelligent and at least one was astronomer enough to put out an Almanac and another to found a town and give it his name in Kansas. But, they are scattered so that I know little more about them at the present time.
Mr. Dillon's house was made of hewed logs, two stories with brick chimneys, two tight floors, and two fireplaces, on each floor. The lower floor had two bedrooms partitioned off with a stairway in the corner by the side of the chimney. I think its size was about 20 x 28 feet. There were times when there were twenty of us to eat, sleep, and work, but several of us were too young to do much work. While the men were selecting and buying land, the boys put in ten acres of wheat, five on Oscar McLouth's and five on Mr. Dillon's and it made a good crop next year.
William Dexter went to work for Mr. Richards by the month and the boys got some potatoes to dig on shares for every tenth bushel.
It took two or three weeks to get moved and land bought. Then the horses were traded for cattle and all turned in to build a house for Thomas Dexter and for our folks. My father built a double log house. The sills were fifty feet long with two cribs twenty feet square with a ten foot hall between them. We finished off one room and moved into it as soon as was possible with its open fireplace and stick chimney. We had lots of wood and the more we burned the better.
It seemed strange to us boys for it was all woods. No roads except what we had made in building and our house was the end of that. But we soon made a track down the brook to some neighbors three quarters of a mile off, who had moved in from the other way coming from the Monroe and Ypsilanti Road. That track became the only road for years between those settlements and Monroe. There was a sawmill one mile south of Mooresville and father made a track and hauled a small load of lumber from Herrington's where Ridge Road now is. It afterwards became the main traveled road from Ridgeway to Ypsilanti, long before the Ridge Road was laid out.
When we moved there was not to exceed one half acre of timber cut. A fire was kept constantly burning and trees were cut and piled on so that by spring, we had quite a garden patch clear and ten acres chopped down, brush piled, and bodies cut suitable lengths for rolling into heaps.
This body of work was transcribed by Jessie Fuller Hoover (Granddaughter), then copied by Mary Louise Hamilton Rogers (GGGranddaughter). The original narrative was owned by Lynn Sale (Granddaughter of Jessie Fuller Hoover)
A special 'thank you' to Mary Lou Hamilton Rogers for her generosity in sharing this extremely interesting piece of history for the Washtenaw Co., MI USGenWeb site. For additional information on these family lines, please contact Mary Lou.