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John Crawford

from Wisconsin Historical Collections   1918

JOHN CRAWFORD was born December 4, 1792, in Worcester County, Massachusetts, of Scotch-Irish ancestry. Early in the nineteenth century the Crawfords removed to Chester, Vermont. After his mother's death in 1810 young John left home and was for several years a sailor on the St. Lawrence and the Great Lakes. He made his home in St. Lawrence County, New York, married there in 1814, and served in the state militia, rising through the several ranks to that of major general. In 1836 General Crawford removed to Michigan City, Indiana. The same year he visited Milwaukee and became interested in a company for a lake steamboat; this steamboat he obtained at Detroit, and on June 14, 1837 arrived in it at Milwaukee. It was the first vessel to enter the river and dock as far north as the present Chestnut Street at Kilbourn's wharf. That autumn, however, the Detroit was wrecked off Kenosha; thereafter General Crawford was employed by Byron Kilbourn in navigating a harbor vessel. On his second visit to Milwaukee in 1837 General Crawford entered a claim for land in Wauwatosa Township, which became his permanent home. He was a member of the territorial legislature in 1846 and in that of the state in 1854. Having been elected to the constitutional convention on the Democratic ticket for Milwaukee County he was placed on the militia committee. In 1866 he was a county supervisor. In all offices he acted with fidelity and energy. He died March 25, 1881 at his home in Wauwatosa. History of Milwaukee (Chicago, 1881), 1639; Manuscript record.

"Biographical Sketches of the Members of the Convention of 1846." Wisconsin Historical Collections 27 (1918). 767.
From the collection of the State Historical Society of Wisconsin: F 576 W81.