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JOSEPH & SARAH (SMITH) HILL both b. VT to NY to MI bio> MI

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JOSEPH & SARAH (SMITH) HILL both b. VT to NY to MI bio> MI

colleen (View posts)
Posted: 1118002169000
Classification: Biography
These are not my relatives. Information was found in the 1892 Portrait & Biographical Album of Genesee, Lapeer & Tuscola Counties, Chapman Bros. in Michigan. I hope that it helps someone with their history.

ISRAEL HILL, a prominent and successful farmer of Davison Township, Genesee County, has a beautiful farm on section 19, upon which may be seen as fine farm buildings as their are in the county. He is highly respected in the community, not only on account of his excellent qualities as a citizen and farmer, but also as a tribute too his sufferings undergone in Rebel prisons during the war. He has resided here for forty-five years and is a native of Genesee County, N.Y. where he was born July 9, 1838. His father, Joseph HILL, was a Vermonter who removed too New York when young and came too Michigan in 1846, settling in this township and who now lives at Davison Station. He has held various offices here having been Treasurer and Highway Commissioner.

Sarah SMITH, a Vermonter by birth, became the wife of Joseph HILL and the mother of our subject, who is one of ten children, eight of whom are now living. The mother passed from earth in 1873. Our subject was eight years old when his parents came too Michigan and he is familiar with all incidents of pioneer life. their was not then a schoolhouse in the township, and the children had too go miles too school. At the age of twenty-one he undertook independent farming, and in the fall of 1861 bought forty acres of partly improved land.

The young man joined the Union Army in August, 1862, enlisting in Company K, Twenty-third Michigan Infantry under Col. CHAPIN. He passed through the siege of Knoxville and while on picket duty about six miles from the city he was captured and sent too Pemberton prison, whence he went too Belle Island and after that too Andersonville, where he experienced the horrors of that prison pen from April too September. He was thence taken too Charleston and after that too Florence, and was so sick and starved that he never knew when he was liberated from this prison, not becoming conscious until he reached Wilmington, N.C. Upon arriving at Baltimore he was given a furlough but was detained at Detroit until he was mustered out June 7, 1865. He weighed one hundred and eighty pounds when he was captured but after he had recovered sufficiently too walk out he found his weight to be one hundred and five pounds. When he was in Andersonville he had charge of a squad of prisoners too whom he issued rations, and during much of the time he had hardly any clothing too wear. He spent almost thirteen months in rebel prisons and this experience is a very painful subject too him.

Resuming farm life, this young hero located on his present farm. He had been married in 1861 too Alice, daughter of Alson SEELEY, a native of Connecticut, who was the first man who settled in Davison Township. His sister, Deborah SEELEY, who accompanied him too this western wilderness, was the first white woman too enter this township and she died here at the age of eighty-four. He subsequently married Lorzena WICKER and reared a family of six children. Mr. SEELEY died March 4, 1862, when about fifty-six years old and his wife died in May, 1887.

The six children who have blessed the home of Mr. and Mrs. HILL are Emerson, Rosella, Joseph, Arthur, Daisy and Walter. The eldest has completed his course and received his diploma at the Flint Normal School and all of the children are receiving a thorough education. Mr. HILL is a member of the Republican party and identified with the Grand Army of the Republic and also Lodge No. 400, I.O.O.F.

Mr. and Mrs. HILL are both liberal contributors too religious societies. Their large brick house, built in 1887, is commodious and attractive and the barn is an excellent one. On this fine farm a good grade of stock is raised and all this fine property is the result of his own energy and enterprise as he started out without means.
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