Brant County, Ontario Canada Biographical Sketches


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Tuscarora Township


These Brant County, Ontario biographical sketches have been transcribed by Bill Bowman from Warner and Beers History of Brant County 1883. They are being posted as Bill completes them. A big thank you to Bill for his hard work!

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Tuscarora Township

Page 686

BENJAMIN CARPENTER, teacher, Newport P.O.. is a son of Abram and Hannah (Adams) Carpenter, and was born March 26, 1832. His boyhood Days were spent in Brantford Township. He received a good education at the Mohawk Institute, and is now engaged in teaching, for which profession he is well fitted. He has a farm of 85 acres, is Chief of the Cayugas, a member of the Methodist Church of Canada, and an influential Indian in his tribe.

HENRY CLINCH, farmer, Ohsweken P.O., is a son of Joseph and Catherine (Green) Clinch, natives of Canada, who were born and raised in Onondaga Township. He is a Chief of the Oneida Tribe of Indians, and was married, in 1849, to Ellen Hess, by whom he had six children, Viz., Amos, Joseph, Catherine, Louisa, John and Charles. Amos married Miss Elizabeth Cross; Joseph married Miss Mary Grear; Louisa married Mr. James Garlow; and all are living in Tuscarora Township. Mr. Clinch has a good farm, and is one of the most Industrious Indians in the reservation. He belongs to the Wesleyan M. E. Church.

JACOB DAVIS, farmer, Burtch P.O., is a son of Lawrence and Esther Davis, natives of Canada, and members of the Mohawk tribe of Indians. Jacob Davis, the subject of this sketch, was born in March, 1826, and in 1848 was married to Miss Catherine Hill, daughter of Abram Hill. They have the following children living, viz., Mary, John, Lawrence, Sarah, Jacob, Joseph and Francis. All are good scholars, and all have had good school privileges. His farm consists of 200 acres of good land, a greater part of which is being tilled. He is a member of the Church of England, and is one of the Cayuga tribe of Indians.

DR. ROBERT HILL DEE, Tuscarora, Township of Onondaga, County of brant, was born at Stamford, County of Welland, July 24, 1829, and is a son of Deputy Assistant Commissary and Elizabeth Dee, both natives of England. Dr. Robert Hill Dee was educated at Stamford, and was taught Latin and Euclid, by the late Rev. Dr. Russell (Presbyterian minster) He obtained his degree of M. D. from the University of Buffalo, State of New York, in Feb., 1852, and passed the old Medical Board, of which Dr. Widmer was chairman, in April, 1852, his studies having been followed under Dr. F. C. Mewburn, at Drummondville, near Niagara falls, Ont. The Doctor commenced practise in June, 1852, at what is now known as the Village of Selkirk, on Lake Erie, County of Haldimand, Ont. In Dec., 1853, he came to Middleport, County of Brant, since which time he has been physician to the Indians of Tuscarora Township. Dr. Dee's experience with the early settlers, bad roads, &c, of the county, have been perhaps greater and more varied than that of any other physician, and we are indebted to him for notes relative to the Indian Settlement which will be found in another part of this history. Bill Note! Remember the time frame when reading these biographies!

Part of Page 687

JOHN HILL, farmer and merchant, Ohsweken P.O., is a son of thomas and Elizabeth (Dixon) Hill, natives of Canada. he was married, May 24th, 1853, to Miss Mary Loft. Their children were six in number, viz., Albert E., David, Robert, Enos, Thomas E. and Hilton. his father was Thomas Echo Hill; he was born in *York State, and came to this country with the first settlers. He is a chief of the Seneca Indians. His wife is a Baptist in belief, while he attends the Plymouth Church. His children are all attending school; Robert and Enos attend the Mohawk Institute; Albert's aim is to be a miller. Mr. Hill keeps a general store at the Council House, and is a substantial citizen of the reservation. JOSIAH HILL, farmer, Ohsweken, P.O., was born October 22, 1843; he is a son of Abraham and Mary (Longfish) Hill, natives of the State of New York, who were among the first settlers of Tuscarora Township. Abraham Hill's father, after whom Whiteman's Creek was named, took an active part in the Revolutionary War, and afterwards located on Whiteman's Creek , in this county, where Abraham was born in 1805.Josiah and Richard Hill are the only survivors of their father's family of five children. Josiah is a Chief of the Tuscarora Indians, and in April, 1864, married Nancy, daughter of Jacob Hill. To this union four children were born, viz., Simeon, who is preparing himself for the minstry ath the Mohawk Institute; Amelia, Leopold and John Starr. the latter was named after john starr, Esq., of Ohio, the writer of this biography, and a representative of the publishers of this work. The subject of this sketch is a well-informed and intelligent gentleman, who watches with great pleasure the progress his raceis making in their upward march to civilization and Christianization. He is a prosperous farmer of much natural ability, and a worthy member of his tribe. He is a Baptist in belief.

DAVID JAMIESON, farmer, Hartford P.O., is a son of James Jamieson, a native of canada, born on Whiteman's creek. He is married to Susannah Longfish, and they are blessed with six children, five of whom are still living, viz., Wilson, Eunice, Harlow, Annie and Nancy. They are all members of the Baptist church. They have afarm near Hagersville, Haldimand County, of 200 acres of good land. Mr. Jamieson is one of those fair, honourable Indians of whom there are many in Tuscarora Township. Bill's note: * Should be New York State

Page 687

G. H. M. JOHNSON, Tuscarora, Chief's Wood, Ontario, County of Brant, was born near brantford, Ontario, on the farm known as Bow Park , October 7, 1819; he was a son of John Johnson, and grandson of Sir William Johnson, the first English officer and Superintendent of the Six Nations Indians, who were then in the United States. The mother of our subject was helen Martin. She was the mother of six children, viz., Joseph, William, Margaret, AAron, Susannah and G. H. M. The subject of this sketch was married August 27, 1853, to Miss Emily Susannah Howells, daughter of Henry and Mary (Best) Howells, natives of Bristol, England. Her father emigrated to America and settled in Ohio, where he remained until his death. By his marriage Mr. Johnson has had four children, viz., Henry B., now a resident of Hamilton; Helen C. Eliza, Allen W., and Emily Pauline, all members of the Church of England. Chief Johnson is a man of more than ordinary intelligence, and for a number of years acted as an interpreter for some of the first missionaries among the Indians. He tells many quaint and interesting stories of the manners and traditions of his people, and has a great number of relics and curiosities, which he has gathered during a lifetime of usefulness. Among the latter might be mentioned an idol which was taken from one of the temples of the Indians, when they were pagans, and a knife which was found by digging at the roots of a tree, where a conscience-stricken murderer, ninety years of age confessed to have placed it more than seventy years before, and at the time he committed the crime. A visit to the chief is always amply repaid by the interesting facts and sights that the visitor there enjoys.

Page 688

GEORGE ALEXANDER MARTIN, farmer, Newport, a native of this county, was born in Onondaga Township, July 1, 1857, and is a son of Alexander and Eve (Hill) Martin, and a grandson of Peter and Lydia (Loft) Martin, all of the Six Nations Indians. He married October 31, 1881, Elizabeth Agnes Miller, daughter of Anthony and Sarah (Doxtader) Miller, and granddaughter of Anthony and Catherine Miller, of French descent. They have one child- Emma Amelia, born July 26, 1882. The subject of this sketch is a graduate of Mohawk Institute, which he attended four years, and taught school in the Indian Reservation, Tuscarora Township, for two and a half years. He was Secretary of the Six Nation's Agricultural Society for the years 1881-1882. He farms 98 acres in Tuscarora, and is succeeding fairly. His a member of the Orange Order, and also one of the Church of England. Mr. Martin is a nephew of Dr. Oronhytekha, one of the most talented Indians of the Six Nations, who is a member of the Masonic, Foresters, Maccabees, and Good Templar Fraternities, and widely known and respected on the Continent of America.

JOHN F. MARTIN, farmer, Hartford P.O., is a son of Simeon and Dora (Longfish) Martin, and was born May 24, 1852. He was married in 1871 to Mrs. Russell, a widow having five children when he married her, viz., Joseph, Claibourne, Wilson, John and Sarah. The children of the second union were five in number, viz., Andrew, Francis, Eliza, Nellie and Ella. They are connected with the Baptist Church. Mr. Martin has 150 acres of good land, and is one of the Committee of Arrangements of the Six Nation Indian's Agricultural Society, and one of the substantial Indians of the township.

Part of Page 688

PETER MILLER, farmer, Ohsweken P.O., was a son of Anthony and Catherine (Martin) Miller, natives of Lower Canada, born december 23, 1838. He was married April 17, 1864, to Jemima Clause, of Quinte Reservation. his family consists of eight children, viz., Angeline M., William, Joshua M., Francis, Jemima, Catherine, Emma and Robert, all living at home. His father was in the army at the time of the Rebellion of 1837-38. He lives in the Township of tuscarora, has 100 acres of land, and is among the thrifty and industrious Indians of the township. He received a good common school education, mostly at the White School. they are members of the Church of England and the Mohawk tribe of Indians. Mr. miller has a good farm, and is making rapid and steady progress as a farmer. He contemplates improving his place still further.

GEORGE POWLESS, farmer, Tuscarora P.O., is a son of George and Elizabeth (Martin) Powless, of Canada, born in the county. He is living on the upper part of the reserve, near to and opposite Middleport, on the grand river, Tuscarora Township, and was born March 23, 1851. He was married, on November 26, 1873, to a daughter of Nelson Martin, of Bay of Quinte. His family consists of six children, three living, viz., Edwin P.E., Minnie L. H. and Cyril N. His education and that of his wife were received at the Mohawk Institute. He has taught school for seven or eight years, and has now began to build upon a piece of land of 50 acres on the banks of the Grand river, on a splendid site for a beautiful residence. he and his wife are both members of the church of England, and descendants of Captain Brant, the celebrated warrior.

PETER POWLESS, farmer, Ohsweken P.O., was a son of Peter and Esther (Lattridge) Powless, the former of whom was in the War of 1912, a chief of the Mohawk Indians. Peter Junr., was born June 10, 1844, and was married to Miss Catherine Henhawk, by whom he has had four children, viz., Isaac, Elizabeth, Peter and william. Mr. Powless, Junr., is a Chief of the Mohawk Indians, and a member of the Church of England, as were all his progenitors.

Page 688 and Part of 689

ALEXANDER G. SMITH, interpreter for St. Paul's Church, Kemyengah, Newport P.O., was a son of George Smith, and was born on April 15, 1849. He was married in 1871 to Miss Mary Wage. Mr. Smith is Interpreter for the St. Paul's Church of England, Kemyengah, under the employ of the New England Company, near the famous Sour Springs. He is also a chief of the Mohawks. he is one of those men whose desire for education ran so high as to induce him, at the age of 13 years, to apply to a friend of the Indians, Rev. Canon Nelles, for a position in the Mohawk Institute, which he obtained, and from time to time was promoted until he received a good education. His family consists of six children, viz., Charlotte, Henrietta, Mary L., Lily N., Alexander, G. E. They are members of the Church of England.

Balance of page 689

WILLIAM SMITH, farmer, and Chief of the Mohawks, Burtch P.O., was a son of Aaron and Deborah (Johnson) Smith; his mother was of the Mohawk tribe, his father of the Oneidas. William Smith Jr., was born June 22, 1841, in the Johnson Settlement, near Brantford, and was married September 3, 1864, to Miss Charlotte Miller, daughter of Anthony Miller. They have seven children living: mary Sophia, born July 7, 1865; William, born Aug. 22, 1867; Charles Frederick, died Dec. 3, 1874; James, born Oct. 23, 1872; Elijah, born Feb. 8, 1875, died July 27, 1876; Alfred George, born June 25, 1877; Frederick S., born Dec. 28, 1879; Minnie Gertrude and Edwin, born Jan. 22, 1883. Mr. Smith is a Chief of the Mohawks by adoption, and President of the Agricultural Society of the Six Nations Indians. He is a member of the Church of England. He has 300 acres of land under the best cultivation. His education was obtained at the Mohawk Institute, and he is one of Tuscarora's best citizens.

WILLIAM WEDGE, County Constable, and Bailiff of the Indian Forest, Ohsweken P.O., is a son of William and Catherine Wedge, natives of Canada, and is one of the Chiefs of the Cayuga tribe of Indians. He is also bailiff of the Indian Forest, and Constable of the county. He was born July 12, 1828, and was married in Aug., 1858, to Miss Catherine Jamieson. They have one child, Ellen, who is married to James Bamberly and has a family of two children. Mr. Wedge is a member of the Church of England. He owns a farm of 100 acres.


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