Monday, January 9, 2012

Birch

Partial 1877 Map of Somers Township.
Two Edward Birch parcels:  one along shore of Lake Michigan and one on Birch Road


The Birch Family
A substantial amount of information on the Birch family is available on my Oakwood Cemetery, Somers, Wisconsin web site.
Click here for additional information on the Birch family.

Birch Photos

The Birch Homestead
Standing:  Frank Birch
Click on image for larger view.
(Source:  Original photo courtesy of Jim and Sharon Bose Smith.  Copyright 2012.  All Rights Reserved.)
The Birch Homestead Farm
Click on image for larger view.
(Source: Original photo courtesy of Jim and Sharon Bose Smith. Copyright 2012. All Rights Reserved.)


Inscription on Photo: "Part of old homestead is an Indian building.  House was built around that.  Was told that this picture was taken on the spot that is the Birch farm before Birch's bought the property."
Click on image before larger view.
(Source:  Original photo courtesy of Jim and Sharon Bose Smith.  Copyright 2012.  All Rights Reserved.)

Grower's Order for Labor dated February 14, 1912
W. Birch and Rock County Sugar Company of Janesville, Wisconsin
Sugar Beet Crop
Click on image for larger view.
(Source:  Original document courtesy of Jim and Sharon Bose Smith.  Copyright 2012.  All Rights Reserved.)


Rock County Sugar Company's Contract for Sugar Beets
February 14, 1912
Wm. Birch, Jr. and Rock County Sugar Co.
Click on image for larger view.
(Source: Original document courtesy of Jim and Sharon Bose Smith. Copyright 2012. All Rights Reserved.)


Remarks on the back of the Rock County Sugar Company's Contract for Sugar Beets dated February 14, 1912 between Wm. Birch, Jr. and the Rock County Sugar Co.
Click on image for larger view.
(Source: Original document courtesy of Jim and Sharon Bose Smith. Copyright 2012. All Rights Reserved.)

1870 U.S. Federal Census:  Edward Birch/Home in Somers Township
Edward Birch, age 45
Jane Birch, age 27
Harriet Birch, age 15
William Birch, age13
Alice birch, age 11
Mary Jane Birch, age 9
Albert E. Birch, age 7
Electra Birch, age 5
Eliza Birch, age 3
Josephine Birch, 1

1880 U.S. Federal Census:  Edward Birch/Home in Somers Township
Two additional children of Edward and Jane Birch in addition to the ones listed above:
Fannie Birch, born about 1874
Edward Birch, born about 1877

1900 U.S. Federal Census William Birch (son of Edward and Jane) /Home in Somers Township
William Birch, age 41
Minnie Birch, age 38
Paulina Birch, age 16
William Birch, Jr., age 12
Christie (Christopher) Birch, age 10 (note:  married Ottila "Tillie" and had two daughters:  Evelyn and Violet)
Frank E. Birch, 8 months

Wreck of the Courtright
November 7, 1871 the Courtright became waterlogged.  The ship was driven ashore 1.5 miles north of Kenosha in badly damaged condition.  The revenue cutter, Andrew Johnson tried to pull her off to no avail and she was left in the surf.

During a severe storm on Lake Michigan some 65 years ago a freight steamer was wrecked on the lake shore beach abutting the land belonging to Edward Birch, an early pioneer of Our Town (Somers).  This freighter was carrying a load of lumber, flour and other merchandise to Chicago.

The morning after the storm, Mr. Birch went to look at the beach as was his custom after severe storms, and he found the sail vessel with its load of lumber piled twenty feet high on the beach and twisted in every shape.  The captain and his crew came ashore in a yawl.

For the next two weeks, Captain Durgon and the first mate, William Tibbetts, lived at the Edward Birch home and they engaged the help of the farmers in the neighborhood and many men from the city to help save what lumber they could.

They built slides and bound the boards together, then pulled them up on land with horses.  The broken lumber was given to Edward Birch and he built many rods of fencing with it.  Considerable flour was also saved and distributed among the settlers in the neighborhood.

Captain Durgon went out in his yawl and brought in the compass and other things of value before the vessel went to pieces.  Among the things he saved from the cabin was a potato smasher which he gave to Mrs. Birch.  A relic she kept for many years.
(Source: “My Memoirs” by Minnie A. G. Ozanne, pages 67 & 68 “Wreck of the Courtright.)

 

No comments:

Post a Comment