Georgetown Township Biographical Sketches
From the 1882 Ottawa County History

Dell Barnaby  *  E. Franklin Bosworth  *  Ira Y. Burnham  *  J. W. ClosterhouseDudley Cunningham  *  Thomas Curry * 
John Green  *  John F. Hardy  *  Homer E. Hudson  *  Hiram Jenison  *  Lucius and Luman Jenison  *  Independence Day Knappen  *  Albertus Kronemeyer  *  Franklin Phelps  *  Benjamin Robinson  *  John H. Toren  *  Eugene Weatherwax  *  George Weatherwax

Hiram Jenison – was born in St. Lawrence Co., NY, 11 May 1813. he and his father were the first settlers in Georgetown. He has ever been largely identified in the government of his township; was the first supervisor, which he retained for years; also twice a member of the State Legislature. He is a farmer and lumberman, residing on section 23. He married 12 Oct 1838, Mary Beardsley, who was born in Genesee County, NY, 26 Jun 1819. They are the parents of eight children. His father, Lemuel, was born in Vermont and killed by the fall of a tree in 1837.

Thomas Curry – was born in Cecil County, MD, 6 Mar 1838. He learned the trade of a woolen manufacturer early in life, and in 1860 entered into the business of manufacturing in Butler County, PA, and remained there two years, when he engaged in oil speculation. In 1866 he went to Ashtabula County, Ohio, and engaged in saw mill and farming business. In 1877 he located at Hudsonville, Ottawa County, and built a saw mill, which he still operates. Mr. Curry married 13 Oct 1864 to Mirium N. Kiester, who was born in Butler County, PA, 15 Apr 1844. They have two living children, Laura M. and John B.

E. Franklin Bosworth – was born in Washington County, NY, 28 Oct 1818. At a very early age he settled in Vermont, and in 1827 went with his family to Buffalo, NY. In 1843 he settled on section 9, Georgetown, where he still lives. He has been Supervisor, Town Clerk and Post Master of Georgetown. He married 27 Sep 1846 to Mary Lowing, who was born in Genesee County, NY, 5 Jun 1825. They have six living children.

Lucius and Luman Jenison, twins, were born in St. Lawrence County, NY, 25 Apr 1823. They are the sons of Lemuel Jenison. They settled near Jenisonville, Georgetown Township, in 1836 on section 34. They are actively engaged in farming, and also proprietors of the grist mill at Jenisonville, built in 1864. Neither of the brothers has ever married.  One took care of the farming while the other twin was in charge of their businesses.

J. W. Closterhouse – was born in Georgetown, 5 Jun 1857. He studied medicine for nearly two years, but due to failing health, he engaged in the mercantile business at Grand Rapids. Subsequently he established a store at Jenisonville, where he is now doing business. He is the present post master. Mr. Closterhouse married 2 Nov 1880 Nora M. Taylor, who was born in Knox County, ILL, 20 May 1860. His father’s name is Wilby, who was born in the Netherlands and settled in Michigan in 1848.

John F. Hardy – born in Kent County, Michigan, 20 Sep 1851. He early learned the milling business, which he has ever followed, and at present is the head miller in the custom mill of L. & L. Jenison at Jenisonville. Mr. Hardy was married 28 Feb 1881 to Mary Hice, who was born in Lamont, Ottawa County, Michigan, 28 Feb 1858. His father’s name is Thomas Hardy, born in Franklin County, VT, 12 Jul 1827 who settled at Grand Rapids in 1843, and in Georgetown in 1865, where he held several township offices of trust. Thomas married 1 May 1847 Lucinda Powell, who was born in the State of New York in 1831.

Eugene A. Weatherwax – was born in Hillsdale County, Michigan, 25 Aug 1811. He was actively engaged in lumbering until 1879, when he settled in Georgetown, where he died 4 Apr 1881. He was married 26 Mar 1877 to Mary Haire, who was born in Georgetown 29 May 1853, who after receiving a very liberal education, engaged in teaching, both day school and instrumental music. They have two children, Don and Jessie.

Ira Y. Burnham – was born in Orange County, VT, 22 Dec 1829. He graduated from Burlington University in 1853. Mr. Burnham subsequently studied law, being admitted to practice in January, 1855. He followed his profession at Northfield three years, thence to Manitowoc, WI, and in Milwaukee until 1863, when he settled in Georgetown, taking a government contract of constructing a road from Berlin to the Allegan County line, and receiving therefore one and a half sections to the title, of which he still retains some 2,00 of the 3,000 acres. At present he resides at Grand Rapids, but has ever been identified in the interests of Georgetown. He exerted a large influence in securing the railroad which is operating in this locality. Mr. Burnham married in May, 1855 to Abby King, who was born in Grandville, VT, 17 Dec 1830.

Franklin Phelps – was born in Ashtabula County, Ohio, 13 Aug 1833. He settled in Georgetown on section 28, in 1865 where he now lives. He married in 1855 Julia A. Cone, who was born in Medina County, Ohio, 16 Feb 1839. They have three children, Winnie L., born 17 Oct 1866; Willis A., born 26 Aug 1868; Flora A., born 26 Feb 1870.

John Green – was born in Genesee County, NY, 31 Mar 1831. He is a blacksmith by trade. Mr. Green settled in Grand Rapids, Michigan in 1850, remaining until 1853, when he commenced business on his own account at Grandville, Kent county, finally settling in Georgetown, Ottawa County, in 1856, being among the first settlers in the vicinity of Hudsonville, where he engaged in farming, and has ever since resided in Ottawa County. In the spring of 1881 he sold his farm, and engaged in general merchandise at Hudsonville. He is also the post master. In August, 1862, he enlisted in Company B, 6th Michigan Cavalry, as a blacksmith and farrier, serving three years and three months. Mr. Green has been married twice; first on 22 Feb 1853 to Ann Eliza Morris, who was born in Racine, Wisconsin in 1836, and died 17 Feb 1854. He married second, 31 Dec 1859 to Phebe S. Smith, who was born in Ontario County, NY, 4 Oct 1828. They have five children.

Homer E. Hudson – the subject of this sketch, as statistics show, has been and is one of the prominent self-made men of Hudsonville. He was born in Cleveland, Ohio, 30 May 1828, he early turned his attention to the nursery business. In 1847 we find him employed in the nursery of Elisha Kellogg, of Grand Rapids. Subsequently, in 1851, he settled in Holland, Michigan, and engaged in the same business on his own account, where he remained ten years. Then in 1861, he established a nursery at Hudsonville, Georgetown Township, on section 33, which he followed until 1873, when he sold out his nursery business, and is now engaged in farming. In township matters, Mr. Hudson has ever taken a part. He has been Township Treasurer two terms, Highway and Drain Commissioner, School Director, and Post Master since the establishment of the post office until the spring of 1881. He is the present Master of Hudsonville Grange, P. of H., and has been ever since its organization, with the exception of three years. Mr. Hudson is also the present Master of Western Pomona Grange, P. of H., No. 19. He married 18 Oct 1849 Clarinda Burt, who was born 2 Oct 1829. They have five living children.

Independence Day Knappen – was born in Chesterfield County, NY??, 4 Jul 1797. He enlisted as a teamster in the War of 1812 and 1813, and served eighteen months, previously however he had made his home in Plattsburg, NY (1811). In 1817 he went to Quebec Canada, and engaged in lumbering until 1837, when he espoused the cause of the Patriots, and soon after was taken in custody by the English Government as a rebel, but preferring liberty to death, took "Scotch leave" bringing up in the United States and settling in Oneida County, NY, where he acted as foreman on the canal, thence to Chemung county, NY, where he acted as contractor on wooden docks on the canal. He first settled in Michigan at Hastings in 1844 where he became the owner of a saw mill, which he operated for some years. He finally settled in Georgetown, Ottawa County, Michigan in 1855, and at the present writing (Dec. 2, 1881), we found him in his 83rds year engaged in pulling stumps, and as hale as a man of 50. He was married 18 Mar 1842 to Miami Fulton who was born in Pennsylvania in 1814.

Dell Barnaby - was born in Potter County, PA, 16 Dec 1856.  He settled with his father in Georgetown on section 27, in 1865.  He married 30 Jun 1880 to Delphia C. Hudson, daughter of Homer E. and Clarinda Hudson, who was born in Holland, Michigan, 21 Aug 1859.

Albertus Kronemeyer – was born in the Netherlands, 10 Feb 1839. His father was a mechanic by trade, and settled in Holland, Michigan in 1847, bringing his family. Mr. Kronemeyer settled in Georgetown in 1858, and now lives on section 21. He is the present (1881) Supervisor, has been Township Clerk, Treasurer, etc. He enlisted June, 1862, in the 21st Michigan Infantry, Company G. and was taken prisoner at Bentonville, SC. He was married 28 Jun 1866 to Mary Van Strate, who was born in the Netherlands, 13 Mar 1845. They have three children.

Benjamin Robinson – was born in Schoharie County, NY, 31 Jan 1810 and settled in Kent County, Michigan in 1838. He then settled in Georgetown, Ottawa County, in 1858. He married 10 Feb 1831 to Phebe R. Wilson, who was born at Chittenden County, VT, 23 Oct 1811. They are the parents of ten children, six of whom have died.

George Weatherwax - was born in Clinton County, NY, 3 Dec 1822. He settled in Ottawa County, Tallmadge Township, in 1848 and engaged in lumbering. He owned a saw mill at Lamont, and has ever since been engaged in the same business, settling in Georgetown in 1855, owning 320 acres of land in sections 11, 12, and 14. Mr. Weatherwax has been Supervisor, Justice of the Peace, etc. He married in 1851 Huldah Ann Van Tassel. During the Civil War, he received a Captain’s commission and enlisted in Company I., 3rd Michigan Infantry in 1861, served in the army of the Potomac eight months and resigned.

John H. Toren – was born in Kalamazoo, Michigan, 5 mar 1857. He settled in connection with his father’s family in Ottawa County in 1860. Subsequently he engaged as a clerk in Grand Rapids. In 1879 he established the business of a general merchant at Jenisonville, where he still does a thriving business. Mr. Toren was married 18 Jul 1877 to Nellie Sonke, who was born in Zeeland, Michigan, 19 Feb 1860. They have two children, Ada and Guy.

Dudley Cunningham – was born in Kalamazoo County, Michigan, 16 Aug 1843. He early learned to be an engineer and blacksmith, and commenced business in 1865, having a blacksmith shop in Byron Township, Kent County. He subsequently owned a saw mill in Jamestown, Ottawa County. In 1875 he located at Hudsonville, running a blacksmith and wagon shop. In 1878 he added a Planer and Cheese Box factory, and in 1881 he added a saw mill, where he is still employed. He was married 25 Oct 1867 to Sophrona Griffith, who was born in Lamont, Ottawa County, 5 Jun 1839. They have two children.

Transcriber: ES
Created: 11 June 2008