History of
BUNKER HILL

From History of Ingham and Eaton Counties, Michigan
by Samuel W. Durant
Published 1880 by D.W. Ensign & Co., Philadelphia

EARLY SETTLEMENT

David FULLER
The first settler in what is now the township of Bunker Hill was David FULLER, a Baptist deacon, who located in the west part in 1837 or 1838. His son henry, who came with him, was married in 1841 to Miss Lovina WHITTEMORE, and his was one of the earliest marriages in town, occurring in January.

The second settler was probably a man named BUNKER, who located in the northwest portion, and for whom the township is said to have been named. His daughter, Mary BUNKER, was the first white child born in the town, but the date of her birth is not given.

Henry WOOD,
in the northeast corner of town, was the third settler. It is thought that but four persons - males -.are now living in the township who were here in 1840-41, and these are David DEAN, George ARCHER, William VICARY, and Charles EARL (son of Jacob EARL). Of the pioneer mothers, Mrs. William B. DEAN is perhaps the only one left.

William B. DEAN,
a native of Orange Co., N.Y., moved to Michigan from Genesee Co., N.Y., in the fall of 1830, with his family, and settled at Plymouth, Wayne Co. In 1841 he removed to Bunker Hill, arriving the 6th of January, and settled on the place now owned by his son, David DEAN. He was accompanied to the township by his wife, four sons, and two daughters, and he, at the time of his settlement, made the twentieth voter in the township. The land on which he located had been purchased from government by George RIDER, but no improvements made until Mr. DEAN settled. He died in 1864, and his widow is now residing on the old place with her son, David DEAN.

Calvin P. EATON,
from Monroe Co., N.Y., settled in the township of Bunker Hill, on section 8, with his family, about November, 1842. The family consisted of himself and wife and six children, of whom none are now left in the township. One son, Edwin G. Eaton, is now in business at Leslie. Their neighbors, when they settled in Bunker Hill, were David FULLER, on an adjoining farm, Charles WARREN, Asher ROBINSON, the WHITTEMORE's Otis JANES, Lewis CASE, in this town, and James HARKNESS and William W. DEWEY, nearby, in Leslie township. These all resided in one school district.

Burtus HOYT settled in the northeastern part of town previous to 1842, and a few years afterwards sold his farm to Timothy BIRNEY and removed to Jackson, where three of his sons are now living, one or two of them in the employ of the Michigan Railway Company.

Abijah Lee CLARK,
from the north line of the Indian reservation in Genesee Co., N.Y., removed to Michigan in 1835, with his wife and three children, and settled in the "Bean Creek County," in the township of Rollin, Lenawee Co., where they lived until March, 1843. In that month they removed to Ingham County, and settled in the township of Bunker Hill, where Mr. CLARK's widow now resides on the farm first settled. It had been procured of John EVANS in trade, and was first occupied and improved by Ebenezer WHITTEMORE, who lived upon it several years. EVANS never occupied it, and the improvements which had been made when CLARK came were of little account. Neighbors were already quite plentiful, the nearest being Ira WHITTEMORE, who lived on an adjoining farm. David FULLER and Calvin P. EATON were a mile or two away. Mrs. Henry FULLER is the only survivor of the community as it existed upon the arrival of Mr. CLARK and his family. The latter experienced their greatest hardships while living in Lenawee Co., the township of Rollin containing but very few families when they arrived there. Mr. CLARK's son, John Lee CLARK, now living in Bunker Hill, was the second white child born in the township of Rollin, his birth occurring Aug. 4, 1837.

Henry B. HAWLEY,
from the State of New York, was an early settler in the township of henrietta, Jackson Co., Mich., and in 1850 became a resident of Bunker Hill, locating in the southwest part of the town, on a farm which was first improved by Aaron BROWER, one of the earliest settlers. William VICARY, another pioneer, located in the same neighborhood. In 1870, Mr. HAWLEY removed to the village of Leslie, where he at present resides. he is among the prominent citizens of the county, and has held numerous positions of trust, as will appear by references to the list of township officers.

Joab EARL was one of the first settlers in the southeast part of town, and John EWING and John O'BRIEN were early in the same locality. Lucius LORD settled early a mile north of Fitchburg.

In the north and east portions of the township have settled large numbers of natives of the land of the shamrock. The first of the nationality who came was James MARKEY, who arrived with a large family in the neighborhood of 1840, and settled near the Centre. He was a prominent citizen, and several of his sons were afterwards chosen to various township offices. James BIRNEY and numerous others followed, and at present the Irish voters in the township number about seventy, almost a controlling power in political affairs. They have erected a fine frame Catholic church northeast of the centre of town, and its communicants number 200 or more. This was the third religious organization in the township.

FITCHBURG

Ferris S. FITCH,
from Livingston Co., N.Y., settled on the place he now owns in June, 1848, when the nearest neighbor was even then a mile distant. The locality was about midway between the stage-routes from Dexter to Lansing, and from Jackson (via Mason) to Lansing. Mr. FITCH was the first settler at what is now called Fitchburg. His brother, Selah B. FITCH, who was formerly a resident of Stockbridge, moved to the Corners in the fall of 1848, and three or four years afterwards built a steam saw-mill at that place. He is now deceased. About the time the mill built the father of Messrs. FITCH, Hubbard FITCH, with his youngest son, Dorastus, located at the place where the latter is now living. Hubbard FITCH is deceased.

In 1848 the only post-office in the township - and it was the first - was in the western part, in charge of a man named TUTTLE; it was called Bunker Hill. Afterwards an office was established in the northwest part of town, called Felt, with Dorman FELT as postmaster; he had settled in 1847. About 1855 an office was established at Fitchburg, with Hubbard FITCH as postmaster, and for some time the township contained three post-offices, the name of Bunker Hill post-office having been changed to Bunker Hill Centre. Felt post-office has been discontinued, and those at present in existence are Fitchburg and Bunker Hill. J.S. SWEEZY is postmaster at the latter place, having held the position since February, 1879.

After the office was established at Fitchburg, it was not until a recent date that a mail-route was established through the place. Mail was brought from the nearest offices, - Stockbridge, Leslie, etc. Selah B. FITCH succeeded his father as postmaster, the next incumbent being William DOWDEN, who had come to the place and established a store. He removed and was succeeded by John P. HAWLEY, from Henrietta, Jackson Co., who brought DOWDEN out. The next, and present, incumbent was Henry STOWELL, who has held the office several years.

Fitchburg has at present three stores, two blacksmith-shops, a wagon-shop, a shoe-shop, and a Methodist Church.

BUNKER HILL

Near the centre of the township, contains a small store, a post-office, a blacksmith-shop, and the town hall. John DeCAMP, an early settler at the Centre, was long the postmaster. His father is living in Webster, Washtenaw Co., at an advanced age.

ORIGINAL LAND ENTRIES
(Link to Page)

1844 TAXPAYER LIST

Henry WOOD Silas HOLT Abram A. WILCOX
Burtus HOYT Abijah L. CLARK Ahra WHITTEMORE
Ebenezer WHITTEMORE Charles QUIGLEY Dennis HARTLEY
David FULLER Calvin P. EATON Lewis CASE
Luther SMITH Patrick MARKEY James MARKEY
Thomas MARKEY Orson O. JANES Charles WARREN
Sylvester OSBORN Bezaleel A. HODGE Bezaleel ARCHER
Parley P. MOORE Charles WOOD Lucius LORD
John FLETCHER John EWING Job EARL
William B. DEAN Lyman CULVER Aaron BROWER
Ira E. PARKER James VICARY William VICARY
Philander PEAK

TOWNSHIP OFFICERS

SUPERVISORS

1840-42 Henry WOOD 1855-56 Philetus R. PEEK
1843 Lewis CASE 1857-60 Henry B. HAWLEY
1844-45 Henry WOOD 1861 George W.M. SHEARER
1846 Charles WOOD 1862-63 Ferris S. FITCH
1847 Henry WOOD 1864-65 Henry B. HAWLEY
1848 John B. McCREERY 1866 Garret DUBOIS*
1849 Henry WOOD 1867-70 James BIRNEY
1850 Philetus R. PEEK 1871-72 John DeCAMP
1851 Jonathan WOOD 1873-74 James BIRNEY
1852 Ferris S. FITCH 1875-78 William H. HOWLETT
1853-54 Henry B. HAWLEY 1879 Isaac MAGGOON

* Resigned, and F.S. Fitch appointed.

TOWNSHIP CLERKS

1840 Uzziel C. TAYLOR 1861-62 James MARKEY
1841 Harvey TAYLOR* 1863 William DOWDEN
1842-45 Charles WOOD 1864-65 John DeCAMP
1846 Lewis R. PERKINS 1866 James KELLY
1847-49 Charles WOOD 1867-70 Peter M. ETCHELLS
1850 John B. McCREERY 1871 John W. WHALLON
1851 Charles WOOD 1872 James M. BIRNEY
1852-53 Charles B. DEAN 1873-74 Peter M. ETCHELLS
1854-55 Charles WOOD 1875-76 Charles DeCAMP
1856 Henry B. HAWLEY 1877 Peter M. ETCHELLS
1857-58 Joseph DUTCHER 1878 Charles F. DeCAMP
1859-60 John DeCAMP 1879 Charles F. DeCAMP

*Removed from county, David H. FULLER appointed

TREASURERS

1840-42 Otis JANES 1860-61 John BIRNEY
1843 David FULLER 1862-63 Dorastus FITCH
1844-45 Abram A. WILCOX 1864 George W. CROSS*
1846-49 Jonathan WOOD 1865 Nathaniel EARL
1850 Abram A. WILCOX 1866 John GEE, Jr.
1851 Johnson POST 1867 Harry CROSS
1852 Hiram HODGES 1868-70 John DeCAMP
1853 Philip TINKER 1871 Aaron J. RAYNER
1854 Henry O. HODGES 1872-74 Charles F. DeCAMP
1855 Jonathan WOOD 1875-77 James M. BIRNEY
1856-57 James MARKEY, Jr. 1878 John W. WHALLON
1858-59 Alonzo B. KIMBALL 1879 John W. WHALLON

*Removed from township, Nathaniel Earl appointed

JUSTICES OF THE PEACE

1840 John EWING
Parley MOORE
Uzziel C. TAYLOR
1860 Henry B. HAWLEY
1841 Record Missing 1861 Thomas C. ETCHELLS
1842 Parley P. MOORE 1862 John B. McCREERY
1843 Henry WOOD 1863 James MARKEY
James BIRNEY
1844 Jonathan WOOD 1864 Henry B. HAWLEY
1845 Abijah L. CLARK 1865 James BIRNEY
John C. CHASE
John DeCAMP
1846 Parley P. MOOER 1866 John C. CHASE
1847 A.A. WILCOX
Aaron BROWER
1867 Daniel C. POTTER
1848 William SMITH 1868 Luke PERRINE
Lot A. BROWER
John P. HAWLEY
1849 Jonathan WOOD
F.S. FITCH
1869 James BIRNEY
1850 James M. SHEARER
Alba BLAKE
1870 James M. WHALLON
John DeCAMP
Bernard WINTERS
1851 Gustavus A. HOLT
Ezra CULVER
1871 Lot A. BROWER
1852 Henry B. HAWLEY
James BIRNEY
John B. McCREERY
Dorman FELT
1872 Bernard WINTERS
1853 James RANDALL
James BIRNEY
1873 George BAILEY
1854 John B. McCREERY 1874 E.H. ANGELL
John DeCAMP
1855 James BIRNEY 1875 James BIRNEY
P.M. ETCHELLS
1856 Henry B. HAWLEY 1876 Isaac MAGGOON
1857 James RUNDELL 1877 Peter M. ETCHELLS
1858 J.B. McCREERY
James MARKEY, Jr.
1878 William JOHNSON
1859 Daniel F. MUSCOTT 1879 James BIRNEY

1880 TOWNSHIP OFFICERS

Supervisor: William H. HOWLETT
Clerk: Henry P. WHIPPLE
Treasurer: James M. BIRNEY
Justice of the Peace: Isaac MAGGOON
Superintendent of Schools: Isaac MAGGOON
School Inspector: Edwin GROW
Commissioner of Highways: Lewis MORSE
Drain Commissioner: Patrick McCARY
Constables: George McENDER, Daniel DeCAMP,
John G. KNIGHT, Abraham NICHOLS

RELIGIOUS

The first religious organization in the township was a Baptist society, which was formed early at the house of David FULLER, who was appointed a Deacon in the church. A Congregational Church was next organized, at Dean's Corners, followed by the Catholic Church, in the north part of town, which latter is the only one of the three now in existence. Methodist Episcopal and Protestant Churches were next in order; the latter declined, and from it was finally organized a United Brethren Church, which has, during the present season (1880), erected a church at the south line of the township. A Methodist Episcopal class was organized in the neighborhood of 1850-55, with a small membership, but all were earnest workers. The present brick church at Fitchburg, owned by this society was built in 1871. The church has a fair membership. Its pastor is Rev. Mr. BRADLEY, who took charge in the fall of 1879.

There is also a Methodist class at the centre, at which place the Adventists also hold meetings. The Methodists and United Brethren have the only church buildings in the township.

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