Gaylord Fact Finders Genealogical Society

P.O. Box 1524

Gaylord, Michigan 49734

Volume 15, Number 2                                                                                                                            October, 2001


Officers for 1999-2000: Committees:
President Donna Marrs Obituaries/Vital Records Donna Marrs
Vice President  Patricia Moehring Membership Patricia Moehring
Recording Secretary Mary "Dell" Krueger Social Patricia Moehring
Corresp. Secretary Donna Marrs Newsletter Donna Marrs
Treasurer Jackie Skinner Patricia Moehring
Past-President  Uilani Clifton Inter-Society Liaison  Donna Marrs
MGC Delegates Donna Marrs
These officers and Past-President comprise our executive board. Janet and Don Rechlin
Publications  Sue Giessel
Historian Pat Moehring

Publisher of "The Keystone" is the Gaylord Fact Finders Genealogical Society, a non-profit organization. Publication is in January, April, July, and October.
Membership dues are $10.00 per individual (or $ 12.00 per family), and are due by the May meeting each year. If the dues have not received, that member will not receive the July issue of "The Keystone." Regular meetings are held at 7:00 p.m. on the third Wednesday of each month (August - November, and March - June) at the Family History Center, 600 N. Elm, Gaylord, Michigan.

Correspondence should be sent to the address shown at the top.

This issue includes a short family history, up-coming events, Society Announcements, some more research web-sites, as well as an early pioneer recollection by George A. Menzies.

Library Corner

The Loyalists of Massachusetts                                                                                                   Call 929.3 Jon
by E. Alfred Jones

Introduction---from original unpublished Loyalist manuscripts in the Public Record Office in London, many of which no longer exist.
Includes declarations of sentiments and petitions.
Includes the surnames of Adams, Alexander, Alien, Anderson, Arnold, Atherton, Barnes, Bernard, Bowers, Black, Bliss, Blowers, Borland, Boulton, Boutineau, Bowen, Brattle, Bridgham, Browne, Bryant, Byles, Calef, Campbell, Caner, Cazneau, Chace, Chandler, Clark, Clarke, Clemens, Clinton, Coffin, Copley, Cordin, Cross, Cunningham, Curwen, Cutler, daCosta, Danforth, Deblois, Dumaresq, Dwight, Ellison, Erving, Fitch, Flucker, Forrest, Gardiner, Gay, Gilbert, Goldthwait, Gordon, Gorham, Gray, Green, Gridley, Griffith, Hallowell, Harrison, Hatch, Holland, Hooper, Horton., Hutchinson, Hutton, Ingersoll, Inman, Jackson, Jeffries, Jones, Joy, Knox, Latta, Leonard, Lloyd, Logan, Loring, Lovell, Malcolm, Mather, McAlpine, McGilchrist, McMaster, Mein, Murray, Nickolls, Oliver, Paine, Paxton, Pelham, Pepperell, Phipps, Perkins, Pollard, Porter, Preston, Propert, Putnam, Rogers, Randall, Ruggles, Saltonstall, Serjeant, Sewall, Thomas, Thompson, Troutbeck, Upham, Vassall, Walker, Walter, Ward, Warren, Weeks, Weswell, Whitworth, Wightman, Willard, Williams, Winslow, and others.

From e-mail:
Ellis Island opened in 1892. Before that, the port of New York was served by Castle Garden, America's first immigrant processing station, which was .in service from 1855 - 1890. Before 1855, there was no immigrant processing, and newcomers simply got off the ships at the docks and went on their way, for better or worse.

National Archives microfilm indexes for the port of New York are available from 1820 - 1846, and from June, 1897 - 1948. The new Ellis Island onli8ne database covers 1892 - 1924. See

For years not covered by those indexes, see reference books
Germans to America
The Famine Immigrants---edited by Ira A. Glazier and Michael Tepper
Italians to America---edited by Ira A. Glazier and P. William Filby
Migration from the Russian Empire---edited by Ira A. Glazier
Passenger and immigration lists index---by P, William Filby

A short family history

By Gerald Greene
"Josette DeRosier was born in the vicinity of Lac DuFlambeau, Wisconsin, the daughter of a Chippewa mother and a French voyageur father probably in 1829. She had four brothers and a sister and at least two of the brothers went by a different last name, Parrisien, which suggests that there was more than one father for the children. The exact identity and history of these men is unknown.

"Josette's mother, which the family refers to as Chippesa Woman, decided to leave Wisconsin around 1832 and they traveled by a Mackinac mail boat to Sault Saint Marie. With the mother was Josette and her older brother Jean Baptiste Parrisien. They were about ages three and ten respectively.

"Arriving in Sault Saint Marie, they settled for a while, a time sufficient for Jean Baptiste to learn the rapids on the Saint Mary's River and serve as a guide for the French Canadian voyageurs. Again after some period of time, they arranged for a mail boat to take them to Mackinac Island, where again they stayed for a period of time.

"Here they met, or became acquainted with William Ferry, one of the first protestant missionaries to work with the Indians. He ran an Indian school on the island, but within a short time, after the arrival of Chippewa Woman and her children, he traveled with Rix Robinson, the founder of Grand Haven, Michigan to set up a trading post.

"Within a year, 1835, the mother of this fatherless family traded a shawl for a canoe, since the mail boat would not go to the Grand Haven area, she and the children paddled the 270 miles to the mouth of the Grand River, where Grand Haven was located. At the time, there were no settlements along the Lake Michigan coast all the way down to Saint Joseph.

"Very little is known of Josette during her first few years in Grand Haven, but at age 18, December 26, 1847, she married Peter Duvernay, the son of Pierre Duvernay, also one of the original founders of Grand Haven. Her marriage license is the first recorded license in Ottawa County. They had five children, and the then Peter froze to death and she married David Moon on May 22, 1858, and had three more children. Her second child was Sarah Elizabeth Moon, my great-grandmother, whom I met during the summer of 1940. She died in 1945. In the Indian treaties of 1836 and 1855, the Indians in the Grand Haven area were removed to Oceana County, and Josette received 80 acres of land. Here David Moon died and she then married Henry Robinson on 30 December, 1866, and again had three children.

"Josette was very well known throughout Oceana County as a mid-wife for many years. Professor Paula Stofer of Lawrence Technical University is in final preparation on mid-wives of Michigan, and Josette will be one of the featured women. She has also been written about in the Michigan History periodical. Josette died in April, 1904.

"Coincidentally, the Oceana County Historical and Genealogical Society is located in the Chadwick-Munger House in Hart, Michigan. Dr. Munger was its builder and the physician that Josette, my great- great-grandmother worked with.

"John Baptiste Parrisien became very well known in the area, and lived until 1912. He is
noted for being the first person to blaze a foot trail from Grand Haven to Grand Rapids,
which today is a road, and for a number of years, he carried the mail between the two

Gerald Greene

Editor's note - these short stories are being contributed by members of our genealogical society for publication here. IF ANYONE HAS NOT YET CONTRIBUTED THEIR STORIES, PLEASE SEND THEM TO PRESIDENT, DONNA MARRS, OR TO THE SOCIETY.


1. Thou shalt name your male children James, John, Joseph, Josiah, Abel, Richard, Thomas, or William,
2. Thou shalt name your female children Elizabeth, Mary, Martha, Maria, Sarah, Ida, Virginia, May,
3. Thou shalt leave NO trace of your female children,
4. Thou shalt, after naming your children from the above lists, call them by strange nicknames such as Ike, Eli, Polly, Dolly, Sukey---making them difficult to trace,
5. Thou shalt NOT use any middle names on any legal documents or census reports, and only where necessary, you may use only initials on legal documents,
6. Thou shalt learn to sign all documents illegibly so that your surname can be spelled, or misspelled, in various ways: Hicks, Hix, Hixe, Hucks, Kicks, Nicks,
7. Thou shalt, after no more than 3 generations, make sure that all family records are lost, misplaced, burned in a court house fire, or buried so that NO future trace of them can be found,
8. Thou shalt propagate misleading legends, rumors, and vague innuendo regarding your place of origin,

A. You may have come from England, Ireland, Scotland, Wales...or Iran,
B. You may have American Indian ancestory of the______tribe,
C- You may have descended from one of the three brothers that came over from ____,

9. Thou shalt leave NO cemetery records, or headstones with legible names,
10. Thou shalt leave NO family Bible with records of births marriages, or deaths,
11. Thou shalt ALWAYS flip thy name around. If James Albert, thou must make all of thy records in the names of Albert, A.J., J.A., Al, Bert, Bart, or Alfred,
12. Thou must also flip thy parents names when making reference to them, although 'Unknown" or a blank line is an acceptable alternative,
13. Thou shalt name at least 5 generations of males, and dozens of their cozens with identical names, in order to totally confuse searchers.

MSYCEGWELFY = Make Sure You Confound Every Genealogist Who Ever Looks For You.


October, 2001
18 - 20 MGC Seminar, Troy, Michigan, Inkwells to the Internet

November, 2001
3 Kalkaska Society - Researching, Writing and Publishing Your Family History
4 Gaylord Society - Beginners Workshop(?)

March, 2002
16 Downriver Society Workshop

April, 2002
13 Monroe County Society

May, 2002
14, 15-18 NGS Society, Milwaukee, Wisconsin

August, 2002
7-10 FGS Conference, Ontario, Canada

October, 2002
26 Washtenaw Society, featuring Sandra Luebking

The Gaylord Family History Library is now open on Tuesday and Wednesday from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m., AND from 5:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. They are closed Monday, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday. 
Beginning September 19, 2001, we will be able to meet at the Gaylord Family History
Library, at 600 N. Elm, in Gaylord.

Organized 1889.
OBJECTIVES: The purposes and objects of this Society are declared to be patriotic, Historic and educational, and shall include those intending to perpetuate the memory of the men who, by their services of sacrifices during the war of the American Revolution, achieved the independence of the American people; to unite and promote fellowship among their descendents; to inspire them and the community at large with a more profound reverence for the principles of the government founded by our forefathers; to encourage historical research in relation to the American Revolution; to acquire and to preserve the records of the individual service of the patriots of the war, as well as documents, relics, and landmarks; to mark the scenes of the Revolution by appropriate memorials; to celebrate the anniversaries of the prominent events of the war and of the Revolutionary period; to foster true patriotism; to maintain and extend the institutions of American freedom, and to carry out the purposes expressed in the preamble of the Constitution of our country and the injunctions of Washington in his farewell address to the American people.
MEMBERSHIP: Any man shall be eligible to membership in the Society who, being of the age of twenty-one yeas or over, ~and a citizen of good repute in the community, is a direct descendant of an ancestor, who was at all times unfailing in his loyalty to, and rendered active service in, the cause of American Independence, either as an officer, soldier, seaman, marine, militiamen, or minute man in the armed forces of the Continental Congress of any one of the several Colonies of States, or as a signer of the Declaration of Independence; or as a member of a Committee or Society of Correspondence, or as a member of any Continental, Provincial, or Colonial Congress of Legislature; or as a recognized patriot who performed actual service by overt acts of resistance to the authority of Great Britain.
(More information is available at

MICHIGAN COUNTY CLERKS GENEALOGY DIRECTORY has been updated and is online. It may be visited at
IRISH RESEARCH If you have Irish ancestors, check out
GERMAN GENEALOGY A great source for those with German roots
SURNAME RESEARCH This is a fairly new site to search by surnames.

(From Redford Twsp. Historical & Genealogical Society---Vol 3 #l)

Published in "Northern Star" May 23, 1993; Submitted by Bill Granlund

The following article was completed in 1950 by George A. Menzies. Mr. Menzies recalls the very early pioneer days in Otsego County. His parents moved to the area in 1871 or 1872, making them among Otsego County's first settlers. He portrays an interesting picture of early life in our county and many of the difficult times that were experiences.

"My parents, Robert and Margaret Menzies, moved from Evart, Michigan to Otsego Lake in 1871 or early in 1872. Later, they lived at the north end of the lake at a settlement called Bagley. The railroad terminated at the south end of the lake at that time, and their transportation from one end to the other was by dug-out canoe. The William Smith family lived in Bagley at that time. Mr. Smith ran a little store. My father was a land-looker, or locator, as they called them at that time.

"Father took up a homestead in Section 28, T. 32 N., Range 3 W., ion what was later known as Corwith Township near Vanderbilt. Mother went to Blissfield, Lenawee County in 1873 and returned in January, 1874. The railroad was built as far as Gaylord at that time and she stayed at a log hotel. She said she was sort of afraid, as there were no women there, only men.

"She took the stage from Gaylord to the new home near Vanderbilt. The new home was a shanty about 12 by 13 feet, with a roof of elm bark and a split log floor.

"I do not recall the names of anyone in Gaylord at that time, except George Smith, who ran a store. Prior to that time supplies had to be carried from Otsego Lake.

"A stage ran from Otsego Lake to the Soo, and later from Gaylord. The road ran close to the shanty. Among the first neighbors were the Wades, the Trumleys and the VanWerts. The VanWerts ran a half-way house just north of us, where the stage changed horses.

"Between the stage and those traveling on foot, they had some company. There were also numerous Indian callers, but they were always very civil, more so than some of the white travelers, who would sometimes walk right in and demand food. Mother was alone much of the time as Dad would be away for several days, looking land. Sometimes Mrs. Wade would stay with her.

"My earliest recollection is of living in a hewn log house, but I can also remember playing in the old shanty. Father made the shingles for the house all by hand and also for a little log barn that I can remember, I have heard them tell of some of the hardships of the early settlers. I have heard them tell of some of them living on beechnut bread. They always made their own sugar by shaving up maple sugar. The land was heavily forested with foot paths from one homestead to another.

"I can remember Dr. Parmeter, who lived west and north of Gaylord. When he made his calls he walked or rode horseback. If it was late he would stay overnight and proceed on his way the next day.

"I also remember Elder Neal who lived at Pettifor Lake. I always can remember him because he had white hair and white whiskers. That was quite a curiosity as there were none around with gray hair. All the early settlers were young. 

(To be continued)

OCTOBER 18-20,2 001