SURNAMES BEGINNING WITH "F"
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Cornelius, (Civil War) retired farmer and justice
of the peace, was born in Cattaraugus County, New York. When he
was eight years of age his parents moved to Allegheny county, New
York, and here Cornelius was educated in the common schools and
at the academy at Alfred Center. He remained at home until he
became of age. He taught school one year in the neighborhood and
then he went to Pennsylvania, settling in the township of Wharton.
He also taught school there and engaged in lumbering to some
extent. He enlisted in Company B, 199th Pennsylvania Volunteer
Infantry, and served until the close of the Civil war. He was
with General Grant at the surrender of Lee, was in a number of
battles and was discharged at Lynchburg, Va., then returned to
his parents home. In 1866 he settled at River Falls, Wis. In 1868
he purchased 160 acres of land in the township of Ellsworth, and
this he improved and there made his home for eight years. In 1876
he sold the farm and moved to the village of Ellsworth, where he
has since resided. For four years Mr. Fenton was supervisor of
the township of Ellsworth and filled the office of assessor of
the township for three years. He was elected justice of the peace
and held the office for eight years. In 1885 he was appointed
overseer of the Pierce county poor farm and he held that position
for ten years and a half. Since coming to Ellsworth he has been
elected justice of the peace and is still holding that office.
During his long term of office as justice of the peace he has
never had a case reversed by a higher court. He is a charter
member of the G. A. R., Ellsworth Post, No. 118, and had the
honor of naming the post after Colonel Ellsworth, who was shot by
Jackson at the hotel in Alexandria, Va. He has been a member of
the I.O.O.F. for thirty-three years and has held all the chairs
several times. In his political views he is a Republican. Mr.
Fenton was wedded to Maggie D. Travis, born in Cattaraugus
County, New York, daughter of Nicholas and Nancy (Cooper) Travis.
They were early settlers of Pierce County. Mr. Travis was a
farmer of Ellsworth Township. He died at the age of sixty-four
years. Mrs. Fenton was educated in the public schools of River
Falls. Mr. and Mrs. Fenton have had born to them four children in
the order named: Abner J., married Mattie Meriam and they have
one child, Carroll; Albert E. was drowned at British Columbia at
the age of twenty-five and his body was brought home and buried
in Trim Belle township, Pierce county; Della J. is the wife of
Jackson Duffey and they have one child, James Albert. They reside
at Beckwith, Cal.; Mamie married Fred Smith, of the village of
Ellsworth, and they have one child, Duane F. (taken from "History
of the St. Croix Valley" published in 1909) Submitted by Pat
FERGUSON, Donald, farmer, sec. 30, P.O. Stanton. Born in Canada East, February 17, 1825. Spring of 1861 he moved to Pierce County, Wisconsin, engaged in farming until the fall of 1877, when he moved to his present farm 160, acres worth $6,000. Married Mary McMillen June 12, 1851. She was born in Canada East August 2, 1831, died September 18, 1874 in Pierce County, Wisconsin. Their children are -- John, Duncan J., Margaret (died September 10, 1859), Margaret, Archibald A. Married again to Mrs. Jane M. Learmont on March 21, 1877. She was born in Canada on October 18, 1839. History of Goodhue County, MN, Red Wing, 1878.
FIELD, Jesse, S. one of the genial and able lawyers of Pierce County, was born at River Falls, Wis., October 3, 1862, son of Truman and Abby (Bailey) Field. On his father's side he is descended from Tackens Field, who came from England about 1627, and settled in Massachusetts, his offspring now being scattered throughout New England and the west. On his mother's side he is also descended from an early New England family, her ancestors being people of Scotch-English stock, who came to America in the earliest days. Truman Field was born in Jerico, Vt., October 6, 1806, and moved to Prescott, Wis., Pierce county, 1854. He was prominently identified with the early life of this county and left the impress of his influence upon its history, passing away August 1, 1884. The mother was born in Groton, N. H., May 3, 1830, and died June 1, 1893, having come westward at about the time that her husband did. In the Prescott home, surrounded by the devout care of his mother and the staunch character of his father, Jesse was raised, receiving his education in the public schools. In 1886 he graduated from the college of law, University of Wisconsin, at Madison, receiving the degree of LL.B. He at once started the practice of law in Prescott, where he has since continued to reside. He is well versed in the law, and is equally good at the bar or in his office giving advice. He is a Republican in politics and at the election of 1893 was chosen to serve a term as district attorney, in which office he made many friends, conscientiously, fulfilling the onerous duties of the position in every respect. In addition to this he has occupied a number of town offices, greatly to the credit of himself and the satisfaction of his fellow citizens. Attorney Field is still unmarried and in religion tends toward the Universalist belief. It is worthy of note that the father of Attorney Field was a cousin of the world-famous brothers-Cyrus W. Field, Justice Stephen J. Field, David Dudley Field and Henry M. Field. Reference: Taken from "History of the St. Croix Valley", published in 1909.
FILLBACH, George now residing on a well-kept farm of 200 acres on section ten, Clifton Township, 145 acres being under cultivation, was born in Iowa County, Wisconisn, April 20, 1854, son of John and Catherine (Sayer) Fillbach, the former of whom was born in 1818 and died in 1907 and the latter of whom was born in 1816 and died in 1889. Both were natives of Germany. They were married in 1841. After living for a time in Jefferson County, Wisconsin, they moved to Mineral Point, Iowa County, Wisconsin, where they ended their days. George A. received his education in the public schools and was raised on the farm, remaining on the old homestead until about four years ago, when he came to this township. He belongs to the Presbyterian church and votes the Republican ticket. Mr. Fillbach was married October 19, 1876, to Martha Goldthorpe, and by this union the following children have been born: Adam, born November 23, 1877; John, born January 24, 1880; Eva, born May 28, 1882; William was born February 17, 1888, and Bert was born May 2, 1891. Mrs. Fillbach was born in Iowa County, Wisconsin, October 10, 1854, daughter of George and Eliza (Ginn) Goldthorpe, the former born in 1802 and the latter in 1810. Mrs. Fillbach is a communicant of the Methodist Church. (Taken from "History of the St. Croix Valley", volume 1, published in 1909) Submitted by Pat Casey.
FORSETH, Gilbert, a merchant of Martell, Wis., was born in Norway, November 6, 1841, and immigrated to the United States when he was twenty-seven years of age in 1868. He received a good education in his native town and learned the trade of a tailor and followed it in Norway. Upon coming to America he first settled in Waukesha county, Wisconsin, living two years in the township of Rock River. He removed to Pierce county, Wisconsin in 1870, settling in the township of Gilman, where he bought a farm of eighty acres. He lived here four years and in 1874 moved to the village of Martell and established his present business, which he has since conducted. He was in partnership six years with Gurder Thompson in the general merchandise business. This firm was dissolved and our subject started by himself. He has built up a fine business, which extends over a wide territory. He served as school treasurer for more than twenty years and was trustee for six years of the Lutheran church. Mr. Forseth was united in marriage with Ingor Alena Owen in 1878, daughter of John Owen, who was an early settler of Martell township, a farmer and a blacksmith. He died at about the age of seventy-eight. The children born to Mr. and Mrs. Forseth are as follows: Gerhart is a clerk in his father's store, was educated in the schools of Martell and is a member of the Masonic order; Ida, Alfred and Elmer are at home; Victor is attending the normal school at River Falls, Wis.; Edwin, and Russell. Mr. Forseth has made his way entirely by his own efforts. He owns a farm in Martell Township and one in Gilman Township. He owns the building in which his store is located and resides on his farm in Martell Township. (taken from "History of the St. Croix Valley", published in 1909)
FORTUNE, George, the subject of this sketch, one of the oldest and most successful millers in Pierce county, is also one of River Falls' most reliable and respected citizens. A native of Paisley Scotland, he was born December 14, 1840, to John and Janet (Beach) Fortune. They settled in the Province of Quebec, Canada, in about 1841, when George was one year old. George was educated in the public schools of Canada and at the age of sixteen years (1857) he came to the United States and settled at Hudson, St. Croix county, Wisconsin. He lived here one year and then moved to River Falls and has lived here ever since. He started his business course in the Prairie Mill, owned by Mr. C. B. Cox, and here he learned the trade of a miller and has followed that business all his life. He worked in all of the mills at River Falls, Wis. In 1873 he purchased an interest in the Junction Fleming Mill and thus continued for four years, until 1877, when he sold out his interest, and this year he purchased the Greenwood Mills of River Falls, and this he has continued to run up to the present time (1908). In politics he is a Republican, but has never held any political office or sought any. He belongs to the Masonic order. Mr. Fortune married Mary J. Frazier in 1873. She was born in New York State and came to Wisconsin with her parents in 1854. Her father's name was Daniel Frazier and her mother's name before her marriage was Ann Lattimore. They were both born in England and came to the United States shortly after their marriage. They settled in New York state, where they lived for some years. In 1854 they removed to a farm in St. Croix county, Wisconsin, where the father died at about fifty-four years. Her mother is still living and resides with her children. Mrs. Fortune is a member of the Christian church. She has had three children, all born at River Falls and all living, and all educated there. William G. is the first child born; he graduated from the North Western Dental College and has followed his profession since at River Falls. He married Bessie Russell. Lulu B. is the wife of Christ Offerson, a lawyer of St. Paul, Minn. They have two children, John A. and Janet. Anna is the third child born to Mr. and Mrs. Fortune, and she is now the wife of F. G. Little, of Eau Claire, Wis., chief operator in the North-Western telegraph office. They have two children, Jane Howard and George Fortune. The parents of our subject were natives of Scotland, and the father followed the trade of a weaver at Paisley, Scotland. Upon coming to Canada he followed the same business for a good many years. He retired from active business at the age of about sixty years and lived until he was eighty-seven years of age. The mother died at the age of seventy-seven; she had thirteen children, three of whom are still living. Reference: Taken from "History of the St. Croix Valley", published in 1909
FOX, DANIEL W., farmer, Rock Elm. William D. Fox was born in Mohawk, N. Y., June 21, 1803. He married Catharine Coon in 1832 near Watertown, N. Y., and to this union were born eight children, namely: Sheldon; Elizabeth, Mrs. Cole, now dead; Matthew, living in Nebraska; Catharine, died in infancy; Daniel and May J (twins), the latter now Mrs. Keyser, who lives in Janesville; Harriet A., Mrs. Lee, who lives in Barron county; and Ranson, living in Dakota. Daniel, our subject, was born in Canada, June 16, 1841, and when six years of age moved with his parents to Jefferson county, N. Y., but lived there only a short time when his parents came west to Dodge county, Wis., where he lived until of age. In March, 1863, he married Catharine, daughter of William and Catharine Lee. In 1865 he left home for the first time, to seek a fortune for himself. He landed in the wild woods near what is now Rock Elm, and bought 160 acres of land of the government and a railroad company. Then his estimable wife and himself started to make a home, and he now has 100 acres under the highest state of cultivation, and has a nice home. To them have been given three children: Dora M., Mrs. Whip, lives in Rock Elm; Claudia M., Mrs. Vannortwick, also lives in Rock Elm, and Nellie S., who lives at home. In politics Mr. Fox is a democrat, and has been assessor of the town nine years. He is now enjoying the fruits of the hard pioneer life, and has the full confidence and respect of his neighbors. --Taken from the "Historical and Biographical Album of the Chippewa Valley Wisconsin.
FOX, SYLVESTER, farmer and merchant, Rock Elm, Pierce county, was born at Pamelia, Jefferson county, N. Y., Decmeber 3, 1831. Daniel W. Fox, his grandfather, was of German descent, and George Fox, his father, married Betsey, daughter of Benjamin Cole. The latter had two sons, Sylvester J. and Charles. When our subject was three years old his mother died, and his father subsequently married her sister, Polly Cole, who bore him five children, Jarius R., Charlotte, Almaron, Oscar and Horace. When eight years of age Sylvester J. removed with his parents to Norwichville, Canada, and in 1848 to Woodland, Wis., where his father was killed in a tornado, August 21, 1857. At the age of twenty-four years he began farming for himself, and later engaged in buying wheat. In 1863 he moved to Iron Ridge, Wis., and in March, 1867, he came to Rock Elm, and erected a log house which served for several years as a residence and store. This was the first building in the present village, and the first town caucus was held in it the same spring. The following May he brought his family, and shipped a stock of goods via Maiden Rock, drawing them thence by team. As the road had to be cleared, two days were consumed in making a single trip. The store and mill were carried on by Fox & Hawn, until 1872, when the partnership was dissolved, Mr. Fox retaining the store, which he and his sons still carry on in more commodious quarters. They also deal in wool. Mr. Fox owns three farms, comprising 340 acres, and makes a specialty of breeding Clydesdale horses. June 23, 1857, Mr. Fox married Miss Juliet White, and to them have been born seven children: Estella (Mrs. S. Van Ostwick), Ida (Mrs. A. Abair), Mary and Martha (twins), the former now Mrs. C. W. Condit, Charles E., George and Delsia. In politics Mr. Fox is a democrat and is now serving as chairman of the town board for the sixth term. He is a member of the I. O. O. F., and a courteous gentleman of good judgment and business ability. --Taken from the "Historical and Biographical Album of the Chippewa Valley Wisconsin.
FRITZ, MELCHOR, farmer, P. O. Plum City, Pierce county, was born in Wedenberg, Germany, January 18, 1825, a son of Ludwig Fritz, who was the father of twelve children, of whom Jacob, Melchor, Martin and Margaret are the only ones living. Melchor lived in Germany until twenty-four (years) of age, and received his education in the common schools. In 1848 he came to New York but in a short time went to Philadelphia and worked as a wood-carver for four years and also learned the cabinet maker's trade, at which he served six years. He then came to Pierce county, Wis., to what is known as Plum Creek valley, and commenced farming. In Philadelphia he married Elizabeth Markel, and two children were born to them, Maggie (Mrs. Toby), now deceased and Henry who lives in Plum City and manages the farm and mill. When Mr. Fritz arrived in Pepin he had but ten dollars, and had to carry his goods on his back from there through the woods. He then commenced the work of clearing the farm and had to carry supplies from Pepin on his back for some time. After a while a new neighbor came, who brought an ox with him and they used it to transport their supplies. After more settlers came they made the first cart in the Valley and hitched the ox to that. His trusty rifle furnished all the meat (such as bear and deer) that was wanted. After having been here awhile, he went to Minnesota where he remained four years, then came back and bought his present farm. There were only two families in the Valley when he came here, though there were plenty of Sioux Indians, but they were not the best of company. Mr. Fritz was all through the French revolution and was in Stasburg when Napolean made himself emperor. After the township was organized he was elected supervisor for two years and was school treasurer for ten years. As more settlers came in he declined public offices, preferring to attend to the clearing of his farm. He is a member of the Lutheran church and in politics is a republican. --Taken from the "Historical and Biographical Album of the Chippewa Valley Wisconsin.
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