Harney, Richard J. / History of Winnebago County, Wisconsin, and early history of the Northwest
City of Neenah, pp. 194-215 PDF (15.4 MB)
HISTORY OF WINNEBAGO COUNTY, WISCONSIN. sale was fully consummated in July, 1846, (see City of Neenah.) This sale included all south of the lake in Sections 21 and 22, north half of Section i6, the north fraction of Section 26, and all of Section 27, except the south half of the south- west quarter, and the south half of the south- east quarter. The remainder of the reservation was subject to private entry, on or after December 28, 846. As already stated the town was organized by the Legislature in 1847, and the first elec- tion was held at the mill house of L. H. Jones, April 6, 1847. Cornelius Northrup was chosen chairman and Harrison Reed, secretary. After some preliminary business, the proceedings were certified to by Northrup, chairman, and D. M. Montgomery, town clerk. The polls were then opened for the election of town officers, and sixty-five votes were cast, resulting in the election of James D. Doty, chairman; James Ladd and Salem T. Holbrook, supervisors; D. M. Montgomery, town clerk; Perine Yale, treasurer; Henry M. Filley, Cor- nelius Northrup and L. H Jones, Assessors; L. B. Brian, collector; Milton Huxley, Eras- tus Seymour and John T. Sanborn, school commissioners, Lucius A. Donaldson, Samuel Mitchell and Alfred Hubbard, Justices of the Peace. At a special election held at the house of James Ladd, in the Town of Neenah, Septem- ber i8, 1847, the following town officers were elected, Cornelius Northrup, chairman, and H. C. Finch, supervisor. Although no record seems to exist showing cause for this election, it is probable that James D. Doty and Salem T. Holbrook neg- lected to qualify; and Northrup and Finch were elected to fill the vacancies. At a meeting of the supervisors September 30, 1847, it appearing that there is a vacancy in the office of town clerk, by the removal of Montgomery from the town, Herbert Reed was appointed to fill the vacancy. At this mceting the town was divided into five school districts. The same number of road districts having been established at the organic election. October 6, 1847, Herbert Reed resigned the office of town clerk. November 29, 1847, Lucius A. Donaldson seems to have acted in the capacity of town clerk, and continued to do so, although no record is found to show by what authority. The first white family making a permanent settlement within the present limits of the town was that of George H. Mansur, in June, 1844. (For a complete history of his advent see City of Neenah.) Mr. Mansur's family seems to have been the only population within the present limits, until 1846, when G. P. Vining, George Harlow (both without families), Ira Baird, Stephen Hartwell and Salem T. Holbrook, selected farms and moved on to them. From this time the growth of population was rapid and very largely composed of young, industrious and energetic men from the Eastern States. Many of these early settlers we have noticed in the early days of the city, and unable to ascertain the date of their settlement in the surrounding country, can only say, that, while numbers eventually moved out, others remained until they suddenly found themselves within the limits of a city. In 1847, a building was erected for a store, on the south east quarter of Section 20, near the present residence of Mr. William Tipler; but after a year's experience the enterprise was abandoned, and, in 1848, a school was opened in the same building-the first public school within the limits of the town, and was taught by Miss Caroline Boynton, that year and 1849. Miss Boynton soon after became the wife of Deacon Samuel Mitchell, of whom mention is made in the sketch of the city, as a pioneer, in 1846. The first birth in the town was that of Greenville K., son of George H. and Mary Mansur, August 3, 1845. The first female child born here was Helen, daughter of Asahel Jenkins, in June, 1848. The first death occurred in December, 1849, that of Mrs. H. Houghton. The first post-office was established March 14, 1844, being long prior to any town or vil- village organization. Harrison Reed was appointed postmaster, and Simon Quatermass, now residing in Vinland, was the first mail car- rier. Mr. Reed held the office until April i, 1847, when he was succeeded by John F. Johnston, who, at the expiration of six months, resigned in favor of H. C. Janes, and he, in turn, gave place to H. C. Finch in 1848, when the office was removed to the store of J. R. and H. L. Kimberly, the latter and Earl P. Finch (now residing at Oshkosh, but at that time a clerk in the store), served as deputies. The next office, and the only one within the present lim- its of the town, was established at Snell's, a station on the Northwestern Railroad, May 4, 1876, and called Snell's Station. David Reed was appointed postmaster. 214 [x844-48.
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