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Zuill/McLay Family of Rock County

Zuill/McLay Family of Rock County

Posted: 979915852000
Edited: 1059317192000
Looking for any info on the Zuill/McLay Family that settled Johnstown, Rock County in the 1850's. Will gladly share what info I have.

Rock County, WI

Craig Christiansen (View posts)
Posted: 982975466000
I have just started researching the same area for my family. I will keep an eye out for your names. Please let me know if you fnid any for Powell, Roof, or Sisson around Janesville area. Email at

Johnstown Wi.

Posted: 983303550000
Edited: 1004324813000
I also have family that setled in Johnstown in the year 1842, the last name was Goold they only lived there for about 3 or 4 years the father died so the mother sold the farm and they moved to Oregon Wi. You could check with the Rock County Genealogy Society, Post Office Box 711 Janesville, Wi 53547 Telephone # (608) 765-4509. If I come accross the names you are looking for I'll let you know. Let me know If you find any Goold's. Good luck. Nancy Gabus- Bridges

Johnstown WI

Posted: 983372371000
Edited: 1059317192000
Thanks Nancy! I'll keep an eye out for your names too~ DEB

Re: Zuill family

Posted: 1014361180000
Classification: Query
Surnames: Zuill, Shephard, Chapman, Stewart
I'm not related to the Zuill family, but I'm living in a Zuill house (of sorts).

The building lies one mile over the Rock County line (in Walworth County) and is, therefore, one mile from Johnstown township. Sometime prior to 1910 my home was "Zuill & Shephard, Makers of Creamery Butter."

We found cancelled checks for the creamery in the attic insulation several years ago. The earliest date is April 1910, and the check is signed by Stewart and Chapman, which also reads across the top. The top is actually glued over the previous owners (?) names, Zuill and Shephard.

Would love to know if your Zuill family was in the dairy business and if there's a possible connection . . .

Re: Zuill family

Posted: 1014568861000
Classification: Query
Edited: 1059317192000
Dear Lori-
Yes! That would be my family. John Zuill was my great-grandfather who ran a dairy,as well as breeding Clydesdale horses and shorthorn cattle( the family was at one time the largest breeeders of these critters in the US). Business went well until 1917 when his only son died as the result of a tragic Christmas Day accident. The little boy was 7 years old and John had gotten him his own pony and buggy. The buggy flipped, crushing his chest, and he died several days later. John apparently lost his mind( he had three older daughters but his life evolved around his son), and one or both of his partners swindled him in his dairy business. He went from a wealthy farmer to a poor one quickly, not caring about anything but the fact that he'd inadvertently killed his heir. I remember my grandmother telling me how she went from having servants to being one!!! It is so cool that you found what you did. I've driven by the family homestead many times- I live in Lake Geneva, and often think about how quickly the life of my grandma & her sisters changed. My grandma actually married my grandfather to escape her unhappy home life - I guess anything was better than living in a house of perpetual mourning! Also Johnstown itself was named (in part ) after some of the John's in my family. Apparently, the settlers had gathered to decide on a name, and the conversation sorta went like this, " Well, John, what do you think we should name it?" I don't know John, Let's ask John over there what he thinks!" Apparently, most of the males in the area were named "JOHN"!! HA! It's a great story!! Thanks for writing! DEB

Re: Zuill/McLay Family of Rock County

Posted: 1365059296000
Classification: Query
Surnames: zuill/McLay
I have information on the McLay/Zuill family of Rock Co. and numerous pictures.
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