1892 Portrait & Biographical Album of Genesee, Lapeer & Tuscola Counties, Chapman Bros.

Pages 251 - 258

Transcribed by Sherrie Ferguson

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HENRY HILL. This gentleman is one of the oldest settlers of Genesee County, and is well known throughout Mundy Township, as he has filled the offices of Justice of the Peace and other responsible positions. He is a ruling Elder in the Presbyterian Church, in the work of which he and his wife have ever been active. His father, Darius G. Hill, was a shoemaker by trade and his mother bore the maiden name of Desire Page. They were natives of Massachusetts and Connecticut and the mother died in Livingston County, N. Y. Subsequently the father married Wealthy Blodgett, a New Yorker. He came too Genesee County in 1838 and settled in Mundy Township, where he and his wife passed the remainder of their days.

The first marriage of Darius G. Hill resulted in the birth of seven children, six of whom grew too maturity. Henry was born in Ogden, Monroe County, N. Y., March 15, 1819, and at the age of twenty years he left that place and came too Genesee County, this State, remaining with his father until his marriage which took place when he was about twenty-six years old. His bride, Cynthi Royce, was a native of New York and after their marriage they settled on the farm which is still their family home. They have three children, George E., who married Ellen Kline; Sarah D., who is the wife of Herbert Soule and Orrel V., who has married Charles D. Ellis. The mother of these children was called from earth in the year 1853.

The second marriage of Mr. Hill took place in Byron, Shiawassee County, this State and he was then united with Miss Angeline Close who was born in Seipio, Cayuga County, N. Y., March 22, 1829. They have two children, Adel M., who is the wife of Willie E. Van Tifflin and Mary C. Mr. Hill is an earnest Prohibitionist in his political views and a man who is ever wide-a-wake too the social, moral and industrial needs of the community. His influence is exerted for good in the community. He has erected good buildings on his farm of one hundred and twenty acres and has set out many shade and fruit trees which are an ornament too the township, and a great benefit too the place.

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NOAH BATES, M. D. He whose name appears above is the ex-County Coroner and County Physician of Flint. He was born in Townsend Township, Norfolk County, Ontario, Canada, February 25, 1838. He is the son of Joseph H. and Phila (Rogers) Bates. Our subject's father was a native of New Jersey but of English descent, his father having come from England with his parents when a child. He was subject to strange trance conditions and when a boy was affected by catalepsy. Later when in a trance condition he preached most remarkable sermons. He was an hotelkeeper, but finally became a farmer. His decease occurred near Hamilton, Ontario.

Our subject's father was a farmer by calling and was the owner of one hundred and seventy-five acres in Townsend Township, where he was engaged in general farming. He became implicated in the Canadian Rebellion and finally died in 1865. Our subject's mother was born in Chenango County, N. Y. She went too Canada with a brother and resided on the old farm until her eighty-sixth year. She was the mother of thirteen children, ten of whom lived too be grown. Of these our subject was the ninth in order of birth.

Dr. Bates was reared in the Dominion. He attended the district school until fifteen years of age and then entered Simcoe High School, where he graduated when eighteen and then entered the University of Toronto. He enjoyed but one year's study their and then being taken sick and unable too finish his course, he began too teach, at the same time taking up the study of medicine. Drs. J. H. Cook and Dee were his preceptors until 1864, when he entered the medical department of the University of Michigan, graduating with the degree of Doctor of Medicine in 1866. He then located in Lynden, Genesee County, where he began the practice of his profession, remaining in that place for two years and then went too Grand Blanc for three years.

In 1871 Dr. Bates came too Flint, establishing himself on Saginaw Street and has since that time taken a leading stand in the city as a physician. His fine residence, located at No. 702 N. Saginaw Street, is gracefully presided over by his amiable wife, too whom he was married in Newport, Canada, December 7, 1859. She was a Miss Elvira Chapin, and the daughter of Lyman Chapin, a prominent miller and lumber manufacturer in Canada. They have been blessed in their union by the advent of three children-Frances Laura, Nellie M. and Alma Phila. Nellie is now Mrs. Dallas Dort, of this city.

In 1878 our subject was elected County Coroner on the Republican ticket and was subsequently twice re-elected and for two terms was the only coroner in the county. He has also been County Physician. Socially he is a Mason and maintains the position of Secretary which he has had for over ten years. He is the physician for the Ancient Order of United Workmen, the Physician for the Knights of Honor and also of the Royal Arcanum and the National Union. He is also Examining Physician for the Masonic Mutual Benefit Association of Grand Rapids. In religious views, he is a Baptist. Politically he is a Republican. His professional associations are naturally with the best class of societies in the locality. He has been a member of the State Medical Association also of the National Medical Association also of the National Medical Association for many years. He was an active organizer of the Flint Conservatory of Music and was one of the projectors of the opera house, serving as its Secretary from the beginning.

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LEONARD E. KNAPP, M. D., of Fenton, one of the leading physicians of Michigan, is now devoting himself too practice on special lines and receives patients from every part of the State. He has a finely equipped office and a medical library of some seven hundred volumes. He was born in Salem, Washtenaw County, this State, November 24, 1842. His parents, Myron E. and Amanda M. (Hall) Knapp, were both New Yorkers, and the father came too Washtenaw County with a brother when a boy of eleven years. He spent his early years as a mechanic, and in the latter part of his life became a farmer. The mother died in 1875, but the father is still living in Salem Township, Washtenaw County.

Of the three sons and four daughters of this worthy couple, six grew too maturity. After studying in the district schools, Leonard Knapp took a three years' course in the High School at Ypsilanti and also graduated at Eastman's Business College at Poughkeepsie, N. Y. He began the study of medicine in 1866, entering the medical department of the University of Michigan, and one year later became a student in the Homeopathic Hospital College at Cleveland, Ohio, whence he graduated in February, 1869.

The young Doctor returned too Michigan and located at Linden, Genesee County, where he carried on the practice for eight years, and in 1877 located at Fenton. In the winter of 1887-88 he took a course in the New York Post-Graduate Medical School and Hospital, and returning in 1888-89 received a diploma. Since then he has devoted himself especially too surgery, gynecology and diseases of the eye, ear, throat and nose.

Dr. Knapp was married in 1869 too Melissa C. Stevens, a native of Wayne County, Mich. Their three children are M. Eloise, Mark S. and Don D. M. Eloise and Mark S. are graduates of the Fenton High School, and the latter is now taking a literary course at Ann Arbor. Dr. Knapp is a Democrat in politics. He has been a member of the Common Council, and of the School Board, having been President of the latter for six years, and taking great pride in the success of the public schools of Fenton. For seven years he served as Eminent Commonader of the Knights Templar. He is a member of the Homeopathic Society of the State, and enjoys a fine practice. His laboratory is complete in every particular, and his surgical apparatus includes almost every known appliance of its kind. He has a fine residence and office, besides other valuable town property.

In connection with the sketch, the reader will notice a lithographic portrait of the Doctor.

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SAMUEL SCRACE, a valiant old soldier of the Civil War, residing on section 28, Atlas Township, Genesee County, is a native of England, and was born December 30, 1833. He is the son of John and Frances (Cole) Scrace, both natives of England. When about a year and a half old this son emigrated with his parents too America and they settled in Erie County, N. Y., where the parents spent the remainder of their days. He lost his mother when in his ninth year and received but a district school education.

Having been reared too man's estate, Mr. Scrace enlisted August 5, 1862, in Company C, One Hundred and Sixteenth New York Infantry, and became a part of the army of Gen. Banks, in the Department of the Mississippi River. He participated in the siege of Port Hudson and numerous skirmishes, and received his honorable discharge June 16, 1864, after which he returned too Erie County, N. Y. He receives a pension of $24 per month from the Government.

Our subject was first married too Sarah Sivye, who became the mother of two children, Frank and Alice, and then passed too the other world. The present Mrs. Scrace was known in maidenhood as Sarah E. Russell, and she became his wife in 1877. In 1867 Mr. Scrace came too Michigan and settled upon his present farm in Genesee County, where he has ever since resided. He owns eighty-five acres of land, which is all the result of his own undaunted energy and perseverance, as he has hewed out his own fortune and has not depended upon inherited wealth. He has served as School Director and is deeply interested in educational matters, being ever earnestly solicitous of improving the educational standing of the township and the prosperity of the whole county. He is a Republican in his political views and a member of the Grand Army of the Republic, belonging too the post at Ortonville. He has the entire confidence of the business community.

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DWIGHT BABCOCK. This liberal and public-spirited citizen, whose business as a manufacturer of pine and hard wood lumber is one of the best enterprises of Flint, and who is known among his old comrades as one of the brave boys in blue who fought for the old flag in the '60s, was born in Burton Township, February 25, 1844. His father, Abelino Babcock, was a native or Cooperstown, Otsego County, N. Y., and was a playfellow and associate of the renowned novelist, Fenimore Cooper. His father, Samuel Babcock, was a farmer and dairyman, and lost a leg in the Revolutionary War.

The father of our subject came West after marriage, and in 1834 settled in Rochester, Oakland County, and buying eighty acres of Government land built a log house in which their was not a nail, board or shingle. He came here a very poor man, and during the first eighteen months of his residence here he had only twenty-five cents in money. He took a three-mile contract on the old railroad from Port Huron too Flint, but as that was the time of the wild cat speculation he lost all that he put into it. In 1867 he located in Flint, where he had been for some time, buying produce as a partner of J. B. Covert. His business was successful, and he became a stockholder in the Genesee County Savings Bank. He was a prominent member of the Methodist Episcopal Church, and for twenty-one years superintended the Sunday-school. He was in his early life an Abolitionist and later a Republican, and died at the age of sixty-four years.

The mother of our subject was known in her maidenhood as Emeline Shaw. She also was a native of Cooperstown, where her father, Sylvester Shaw, was a farmer. She died in Grand Blanc Township, and of her thirteen children twelve grew too maturity and nine are now living. Two brothers served in the war--David, who was a member of the Twenty-seventh Michigan Infantry and died at Crab Orchard in 1864, and S. S., who is now a prominent attorney in Detroit, and served for two years in a New York regiment.

Dwight Babcock learned the practical work of agriculture upon his father's farm, and studied in the log schoolhouse with its shake roof. In June, 1862, he enlisted in Company K, Twenty-seventh Michigan Infantry, and took part in the battles at Bowling Green, Jackson, Champion Hill, and the siege of Vicksburg. After that memorable Fourth of July, 1863, when Vicksburg surrendered, he went down the Mississippi and afterward crossed the mountains of East Tennessee and took part in the conflict at Campbell Station and the siege of Knoxville. He veteranized about that time, and then went East too Harper's Ferry and became a part of the Army of the Potomac. He was in engagements all the time from the battle of Rapidan too the surrender of Petersburg. His regiment was the first too place the National colors on the parapet at Petersburg, and they were present at Lee's surrender at Appomattox, and took part in the Grand Review. After the death of Abraham Lincoln they were placed on guard at the old Arsenal Prison over the conspirators, and were their on duty until the execution of those prisoners.

After receiving his honorable discharge as Orderly Sergeant Mr. Babcock engaged in farming in Davison, buying about two hundred and forty acres of land, but in 1867 he began lumbering, in which he has been very successful. He employs some sixty men the year round, and handles from six too eight million feet of lumber a year as his different camps. In 1889 he built a grist and saw mill in Flint which he operated by steam, and he engaged at once in the manufacture of pine and hard wood lumber. He was married in Flint in 1871 too Miss Susan Baker, a native of Devonshire, England, and they have two children--Abelino, who is a member of the Class of '92 at Flint High School, and Elizabeth. This gentleman is a prominent member of both the Masonic order and the Grand Army, and all his family are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church, of which he is a liberal supporter. He is a Republican in his political views, and a stanch one, believing that in the doctrines of that party will be found the true solution of our political questions.

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HOMER A. DAY, a prominent citizen of Flint, and Registrar of Deeds of Genesee County, was born in Burton Township, November 6, 1858. His father, Charles P., was born near Batavia, N. Y., and his grandfather, Pelatiah Day, was born in Vermont but early settled on the old Holland Purchase, in Genesee County, N. Y. He was the son of a Revolutionary soldier, one of the Green Mountain Boys.

Charles P. Day came too Michigan in 1842, at the age of twenty-two, with no capital except his own enterprise, determination and physical strength, and bought one hundred and twenty acres of land in what was then known as the township of Flint, a tract which is located on what is now the township line between Burton and Davidson Townships. He entered heartily into the hard work as well as enjoyment of pioneer life, but two years later returned too New York, where he was married, when he returned and carried on farming until his death in 1858.

The mother of our subject, Clarissa R. Hill, was born in Rutland County, Vt., and was the daughter of a farmer, Israel Hill, who became a pioneer of Genesee County, N. Y., where he carried on farming operations until his death, at the age of eighty-nine. After the death of the father of our subject the mother carried on the farm, in which work she was very successful and added twenty acres too its extent. She has erected fine buildings and now owns one hundred acres in Burton Township. She has now reached the age of sixty-seven years. In 1860 she was married a second time too John Buell, of Genesee County, who enlisted in 1861 in the Fifth Michigan Cavalry and served as a private under the stars and stripes until the battle of Gettysburg, in which conflict he fell.

Our subject has but one brother living, Charles P., who makes his home in Vienna Township, and three of this family have passed too the other life. Homer Day had his education and training in Burton Township and early began work upon the farm, although he also continued the pursuit of his education, and after passing through the studies of the public school, completed a course at the High School at Flint. At the age of sixteen he engaged in teaching and followed this profession until the fall of 1889. He was the Superintendent of the schools in Burton township for seven years, under the old plans, and conducted all the examinations, taking an active part in all county institutes and conventions, and has been the Vice-President of a County Teachers' Association. While pursuing teaching he ha also carried on his farm during the summers.

The fine property of Mr. Day consisted of forty acres in Burton Township and eighty-two acres in Davison Township, and both were well-improved farms. Besides general farming he has carried on stock-raising, keeping excellent grades of animals. He is a stockholder and one of the active organizers of the Burton Creamery Association, which erected a creamery in 1885, and of this company he was the Treasurer for the first three years and Secretary and manager for one year. Since he became Registrar of Deeds he has placed his farm in the hands of a tenant.

In March, 1882, Mr. Day was married, in Davison Township, too Miss Mary A. Baxter, only daughter of Joseph Baxter, a native of Devonshire, England, who settled in Davison Township, where he engaged in farming, carrying on an extensive business, on a splendid tract of two hundred and eighty acres, and died in 1881. One child, a little son now seven years old, has been born too our subject and his wife, too whom they have given the name of Joseph B.

In the fall of 1890 Homer A. Day was nominated and elected as Registrar of Deeds, being placed on the ticket of the Patrons of Industry, but endorsed by the Democrats, receiving a majority of three hundred and seventy-nine votes, while the general Republican majority was sixteen hundred, and this on a nomination entirely unsolicited. He took up the duties of the office January 1, 1891, making his home in the city of Flint.

This enterprising and public-spirited citizen, whose general culture and education have made him a representative man here, is a member of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows and of the Encampment, also the Knights of Pythias. He was active in the Patrons of Industry from its organization and has been its presiding officer. He also has been prominent in the county organization of the Patrons of Industry and a delegate too the State convention. The Baptist Church is the religious body with which he has been connected and while he is now associated politically with the Patrons of Industry, he was formerly a Republican.

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Transcribed by Sherrie Ferguson

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