Strong and Steadfast in the Spirit, Chapter Thirteen: Church and Community Candle Lives

Matthew 5: 13-15 ESV  “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.”

Church and Community Candle Lives

  • Amos Barrett- 1803-1886. He was a farmer and a nurseryman.  Married to Annis Maria Brown Barrett.  His obituary says that he was a highly regarded citizen, a devoted family man, and led a modest life. Buried in Lulu Falls.
  • Stutson Benson-Born October 13, 1767. Died in 1845, Buried in West Lakeville Cemetery, Amboy, Ohio.
  • Charlotte Holden Brown-Born February 1824, Ohio.  Died December 3, 1910. Buried in Lake Road Cemetery, Conneaut, Ohio. She was married to Charles Brown, Jr. He was born in 1819 and died December 9, 1875. He is buried in Lake Road Cemetery, Conneaut.
  • Charles Brown February 6, 1852. He died in September 1943 at age 91. He is buried in Lulu Falls Cemetery.
  • Roswell Cook. He was born in Massachusetts in 1789. He married Betsy Luce on April 12, 1818. He died in 1867 in Geneva, Ohio.
  • The Dibble Family were well known early settlers.

Edwin Dibble- 1820-1910.  His parents were Obed and Patience Dibble. He is buried in Lulu Falls Cemetery.

Obed Dibble was his brother.

  • Walter Fobes and Amanda Fobes. Buried in Eastlake Cemetery, North Kingsville. Amanda Elderkin Fobes. September 10, 1795 to January 6, 1828 Buried in East Lake Cemetery, North Kingsville.
  • Alvin Fox-Buried in Lulu Falls
  • L.D. Fox- Buried in Lulu Falls
  • George G. Gillett merchant and manufacturer, Kingsville. He donated the land for the Presbyterian Church and adjacent cemetery in Kingsville, Ohio.
SMITH’S NEW BLOCK. REMOVAL EXTRAORDINARY NEW YORK STORE has removed to First Door North of Fisk House, Where will be found a full and complete assortment of Staple Dry Goods! which will be had VERY LOW FOR CASH! THE Subscriber has taken the above-named Store, for a term and honest, fair, and liberal dealing- to favor a share of public patronage. His motto is “CHEAP FOR CASH.” JUST RECEIVED, A fine assortment of Pacific and Manchester Delaines, for 29 cents, a thing never done in Ashtabula. Also, A nice lot of Prints. These Calico are the best offered for the money. Shilling Prints for 10 cents. Cotton Cloths, Bleached and” Brown Shirtins, Cloaks, Shawls, Hoods, 4c, Nice, New and Cheap, More New Goods next week. Goods Received Weekly, makes the Stock always fresh. Remember the place. No. 1 Smith’s Block G. GILLETT. Ashtabula, Jan. 12, 1860. George G. Gillett merchant and manufacturer, Kingsville  
  • George Griswold Gillette.  Born June 10, 1804. Died November 1, 1881, at age 77. He is buried in Mount Vernon City Cemetery, Mount Vernon, Lawrence County, Missouri. Parents:  Almerin Gillett, 1765-1828. Eunice Griswold Gillett, 1759-1844. Spouse:  Ann T. Gillette, February 1807. Died January 27, 1880.
  • R.L Grover- Lulu Falls, Civil War Veteran.
  • Thomas Hamilton came to Kingsville in 1806 and purchased the North Ridge property on the east of the Fobes land. 
  • Andrew Harvey- Buried in Old Kingsville Presbyterian Cemetery. Andrew Harvey was born in 1787 in Mount Washington, Massachusetts, son of Samuel Harvey and Huldah Patterson.       
  • Isaac Heath and Reuben Heath Isaac Heath was born in Hartford County, Connecticut in 1729, and remained a bachelor all his life. He moved to Kingsville in 1815 at the age of 86, and out of his life savings paid for three wilderness farms in Kingsville, “for what purpose at age no one ever knew unless he intended to donate it to someone to care for him the little remainder of his life.” The old Andrew Harvey place was one, and the widow McCreary’s places was part of another, and the third farm’s location is gone out of mind.

In the spring of 1815, Reuben Heath, a nephew, came on with his family and went into a cabin on the placed now occupied by Pembrook Sweet and took his uncle in for his family to care for and received his new farm as a consideration on August 19, 1815. The old man died suddenly in a fit with sickle in his hand, and is the oldest man buried in North Kingsville Cemetery. There is but five persons now living who remembers his funeral.  Pioneer  Reuben Heath.  Born April 25, 1788. Died 1855., Buried in East Lake Cemetery, North Kingsville.

  • Libeus Hill-possibly buried at  Old Kingsville Corners Cemetery
  • Judson Adnorium Knapp (1829-1907) and Ellen Colegrove Knapp. Buried in Chestnut Grove Cemetery, Ashtabula.
  • Frances Leffingwell. In 1905 at age 64,  she swallowed laudanum. Her brother, F.L. Leffingwell, discovered her, but it was too late to save her. Her funeral was held at the Presbyterian Church and many old friends who had held the deceased in highest esteem for years attended. She is buried in Lulu Falls Cemetery. Kingsville Tribune. 1905.
  • E.S. Linn. 2D Ohio Battery, G.A.R. Civil War Monument. Died April 17, 1867.  He is buried in Old Kingsville Corners Cemetery.
  • Jeremiah Pike Luce. Born 1799 in Barre, Massachusetts and came to Kingsville with his parents in 1816. He married Tamar Barton. He was one of the first in the county to vote the Giddings Abolition ticket.
  • Reuben Luce- Father of Jeremiah Pike Luce.   
  • Aaron Lyon- Buried in Old Kingsville Corners Cemetery
  • Ives Morse- He was born in 1767 and he died on August 28 1846. He and his family appear on the first census taken in the United States in 1790 and by 1830 the census shows him living in Kingsville. He was married to is wife Elizabeth in 1787. Buried in Old Kingsville Corners Cemetery.
  • Stephen Munger. Born August 28, 1786 at Ludlow City, Hampden County, Massachusetts. Died May 17, 1861 at age 74 in Erie County, Pennsylvania. He is buried East Lake Cemetery in North Kingsville, Ohio.
  • Samuel Newton. Among the notable yeomanry who came into Kingsville as early as 1816, none were more conspicuous for hard work and general industry than the brothers Captain Samuel and Burrell Newton. they could chop and roll logs to clear up land equal to any, and whoever were lucky to get their assistance in the logging folder (cannot of dog hook) was sure to get something done.

Captain Burrell done a good deal of distilling whiskey for Smith Webster at the foot of Sabin’s Hill and here he acquired the habit of the steady use of whiskey, a habit common to a majority in those days, and although he must have his daily allowance he hardly ever drank so much as to disturb his reason or disqualify him for the active pursuits of life.  Both were well liked and were put forward as captain to drill the Militia when every man in town over 21 and under 45 years of age were required by law to come to headquarters and do military duty those days in the year with his musket if he had one, or a broom handle or corn stock if he had no gun. The writer done duty as drummer under Captain Burrell and can say from person knowledge that no company was brought to tine and exercised better than by Captain Samuel and Captain Burrell Newton.

But with nearly all others of those early days when it was honorable to be honest, industrious and friendly, they have gone to their rest, leaving as children but one son each, Harvey, son of Samuel, born in town in 1818, still living, and Samuel, son of Burrell, born in town but now living in Plymouth. Both are buried in Old Kingsville Pioneer Presbyterian Cemetery.

                 Pioneer

  • Miss Francis E. Holden and Judge Francis B. Phelps The daughter of Ira Holden and Sarah Jane Phelps, Francis E. Holden was born July 12, 1862, in Kingsville. She taught music in Kingsville for years and recorded some of its history that she learned from her maternal grandfather, Judge Francis. Phelps. She died on October 28, 1835, and she is buried in East Lake Cemetery, North Kingsville. Historian Moina Large included some of Miss Holden’s historical anecdotes in her History of

Ashtabula County.                                      

Miss Holden recalled the stories that her maternal grandfather, Judge Francis B. Phelps, who was born on the old Phelps homestead on the North Ridge and spent his entire life in Kingsville, told her as a child. He studied law, and although pioneer conditions made it impossible for him to thoroughly qualify himself, he often appeared as counsel in minor courts and conducted his cases with keen perceptions and natural eloquence. For 33 years, he also presided as justice of the peace and people so honored and trusted him that he settled more disputes outside his courtroom than within it. Judge Phelps married Miss Margaret Sanders, the daughter of Reverend Abram Sanders, a Disciple minister from the Western Reserve and Miss Francis E. Holden was their granddaughter.[1]

According to his granddaughter Francis, Judge Phelps told her stories about North Kingsville and Kingsville until his death in 1902, delighting in her “youthful wonderment as the talks unfolded.” She noted that in the 33 years her grandfather served as Kingsville Justice of the Peace, he presided over many amusing cases. He kept a docket covering the two years of 1830-1832, covering 75 cases and he explained to her that that number was not excessive because it was cheaper to practice law in those days. Pettifogger lawyers could be hired for 50 cents a case and take their pay in labor.

  • Pioneer. In the spring of 1834, the Mormons visited Kingsville and according to Francis, persistently and effectively labored with its citizens. The evangelists, Joseph Smith’s brother, Hiram, and Orson Hyde, were friendly, good talkers, good singers and gifted in scripture doctrine. In June 1838, 20 families of Mormon converts from the east on their way to the Temple in Kirtland spent three days camped on the Nettleton place. Judge Phelps was well acquainted with five families from Kingsville who accepted the Mormon faith and joined them on their journey to Kirtland.
  • Pioneer.  “From the early settlement of the town, the daily consumption of whisky in every family was considered necessary to neutralize the bad effects of unwholesome water, or poisonous air, or as an antidote for every disease or prevailing sickness.  If the minister called, he must partake of a drink of whisky with you; if a child was born, a drink must be given to every caller; at weddings whisky was furnished to the guests.
         “About 1830 the first building was raised in Kingsville at which there was whisky.  It was finished by Nathan Blood for William Fobes.  In 1829 the first meeting for the formation of a society on the pledge of abstinence from ardent spirits was held.  Many signed the pledge.  Jugs and bottles gradually disappeared, and it was not many years before it was considered an insult by many to be offered a drink of whisky.
  • Andrew Stanton. Andrew Stanton originally from Tolland, Connecticut with his wife and children settled in the wilderness of South Kingsville in the year 1813. He located his farm about a mile south of the present county buildings with no road at that time going south from the South Ridge. Our father, with others from North Ridge, went over on September 10 to help him roll up his log house. In the early afternoon, they distinctly heard the cannonading going on between Commodore Perry and the British but did not know for several days after that such a circumstance was coming on at the time. The atmosphere must have been in a good condition to convey sound, and the long tomes, well loaded to convey their reports over a hundred miles to be distinctly heard.

Stanton was an honest, industrious citizen and he labored hard to clear up and establish a good farm. He lived to see his living children well started in life, but all are now dead except Avaline, the third child, who married Zebulon Whipple and raised a family of children. She is now living in Sheffield with her son Andrew, at the ripe age of 89 years. She died on June 5, 1897, and she is buried in Gageville Cemetery in Sheffield.

When Avaline was a little girl, she was romping on the crust of a deep snow one day and discovered a deer which had broken through and was floundering to get out. The more he tried to get out the deeper he went down. Avaline, seeing his condition, ran up and grabbed him by the tail and held on until her calls raised help to demolish him. We think it would be difficult for one of our modern damsels brought up at the piano, who would run at the sight of a squeaking mouse, to twist up courage to do such a trick.

  • Albion Winegar Tourgee.

This photograph of Tourgee’s house in Kingsville, Ohio is thought to have been created sometime between 1840 and 1850, creator unknown.  New York Heritage Digital collections.

Albion Winegar Tourgée, 1838-1905

Albion Winegar Tourgee, carpetbagger, judge, writer, and equalitarian crusader, was born in Williamsfield, Ohio, on May 2, 1838. The son of a Methodist farm family that migrated to the Western Reserve from Massachusetts, his father, Valentine, descended from seventeenth-century French Huguenot immigrants, and his mother, Louise Emma Winegar, was of colonial Swiss ancestry. Albion attended high school in Lee, Mass., and alternately taught school and attended Kingsville Academy in Ohio. He was enrolled at Rochester University from the fall of 1859 until his enlistment in the Union army in May 1861.

Paralyzed from a severe back injury he suffered in the Battle of Manassas, Albion received a medical discharge, but in July 1862 he reenlisted as an infantry lieutenant. He participated in the Battle of Perryville, was captured, and spent four months in Confederate prisons. He was exchanged and took part in the Battle of Chickamauga. In December 1863, still troubled by his back injury, he left the service. For the remainder of the war he served as a journalist, studied law, earned his M.A. at Rochester University, and taught school. In 1863 he married Emma Lodoilska Kilbourne; their only child, a daughter, Lodoilska (Aimee), was born in 1870.

When the Civil War ended, the Tourgees moved to North Carolina in 1865, and leased a nursery near Greensboro. Soon, Albion became involved in Reconstruction politics and allied with North Carolina’s small group of Unionists.  In 1866, he organized Loyal Reconstruction Leagues, championed rights for black people and a radical Reconstruction, published and edited two radical newspapers and attended the Philadelphia Southern Loyalist Convention. In 1867, when black people won the right to vote, Albion was elected to the constitutional convention of 1868 and quickly established himself as one of its most influential delegates, vigorously promoting political, legal, and economic reform. Historians credit him with establishing the judicial reforms of the Reconstruction constitution. He served as one of three code commissioners rewriting North Carolina law from 1868-1870, and in 1868, Albion was elected a state superior court judge.

During his six year term as a judge, Albion experienced intense opposition to his outspoken, equalitarian Republicanism, and he was considered a carpetbagger and for some, “the most thoroughly hated man in North Carolina.  Racial conflict and Ku Klux Klan atrocities characterized his judicial circuit, but he became recognized for his ability, candor, and courage as an excellent judge dedicated to reforming the law.

Albion became a leading citizen of Greensboro, North Carolina, active in community affairs. He founded the National Citizens’ Rights Association, and Bennett College as a normal school for freedmen, which became women’s college in 1926.  He promoted industrial and railroad development and established a regional wood-turning industry. He was elected to and played a central role in the constitutional convention of 1875, and in 1876, he moved to Raleigh to work as a federal pension agent. In 1878, he won a Republican nomination for congress, but lost to his Democratic opponent by a wide margin.

Practicing and perfecting his literary talent, Albion wrote anonymous “C” letters in 1878, satirizing Democratic factionalism. In1879, he moved to Colorado to take an editorial job with the Denver Evening Times. He also started his novel writing carrer that year. A Fool’s Errand by One of the Fools, appeared that year, earning recognition, a small fortune, and a new career.  In 1874, Albion had published his first novel, Toinette:  A Tale of the South, dealing with race relations in the pre-Civil War South. In 1880, he finished Bricks Without Straw, a second Reconstruction novel. He wrote three more novels about the Civil War, but his two Reconstruction novels were the most successful.

In 1881, Albion bought a new home in Mayville, New  York on lake Chautauqua. From 1881 to 1884, he edited and published a weekly literary magazines, Our Continent, which bankrupted him.  He wrote several more novels, dealing mostly with the Lake Erie region, and he continued to work as a journalist and lectured on the lyceum circuit.

Still an ardent Republican, Albion criticized modern industrial society and in 1890, he wrote a novel he called Murvale Eastman:  Christian Socialist, and articles on many social issues that appeared in most of the leading journals of his day. From 1888-1898, he wrote an editorial column called “A Bystander’s Notes” every week for the Chicago Inter Ocean. His column symbolized his social reform and justice crusade and explored almost every issue of his time, but he was concerned mostly about the race question and he was a leading white advocate of racial equality and justice, constantly exposing and denouncing white racism.

Lobbying for federal aid to education and a federal election law to implement it, Albion presented the only equalitarian position at the Lake Mohonk Conference on the Negro in 1890, and he worked with black leaders to found the Afro American League and pass the Ohio antilynching law of 1896.

Appointed counsel by a group of black leaders , Albion Tourgee traveled to New Orleans to aid a committee to challenge segregation on railways in Louisiana, and he litigated what became known as the landmark Plessy v. Ferguson case in 1896. Although the United States Supreme Court ruled that “separate but equal” public facilities were constitutional, a decision that ensured segregation for decades, Albion disputed the Court decision and some historians credit him with introducing the “color blind justice” symbolism into legal language.

In 1896 after he wrote a Republican campaign pamphlet for the election of 1896, The War of the Standards, President William McKinley appointed Albion consul to Bordeaux, France, where he served until his death on May 21, 1905. His body was returned to Mayville, N.Y., and a number of America’s black leaders attended his funeral. In November 1905, the black Niagara Movement sponsored nationwide memorial services in behalf of “Three Friends of Freedom”—William Lloyd Garrison, Frederick Douglass, and Albion W. Tourgée.

Albion W. Tourgee is buried in Mayville Cemetery in Mayville, New York.

In 2015, residents and students and faculty at Kent State University- Ashtabula placed a historical marker outside Albion Tourgée’s boyhood home to honor the local hero who risked his life working to write civil rights into law in the post–Civil War South

  • Smith Webster. Census and tax records show that Smith Webster lived in Kingsville from the 1820s to at least the 1840s. He possibly was married to Rosamund Fobes.  His Aunt was Anna Hart Webster, was married to Lyman Webster.

Anna Webster:  Born April 5, 1821, and died January 15, 1895. She is buried in Lulu Falls Cemetery.

In the 1880s, the Kingsville Tribune printed a series of historical reminiscences about early times in Kingsville, signed by a writer named PIONEER.  Pioneer wrote that Smith Webster, one of Kingsville’s early pioneers, came from Litchfield, Connecticut to Ashtabula in 1807, returned home, and again came to Ashtabula in 1808, purchasing a place on the creek. In 1809, he sold his place in Ashtabula and came to Kingsville and bought a farm.

According to Pioneer, Smith Webster was a clever, generous hearted man, and everyone knew him liked him. Smith stood out as an enterprising man for his times. He built a still at the foot of the hill and what was then known as Sabin’s land and carried on a flourishing business for pioneer days.

In 1824, when he was still a boy, Pioneer attended his first town election, and in the road opposite the site of the post office he saw Smith Webster with some of the other young pioneers sporting themselves, knocking off hats and blowing off steam. His wife died and his few children dispersed and gone, his property disappeared, he was left disconsolate and broken-hearted in his old age. He traveled west to visit old friends in Illinois and his visit ended, he returned to Kingsville to die. His niece, Mrs. Lyman Webster, took him in and kindly cared for him until he died some years ago. Pioneer ended his sketch by noting, “Thus ended the life of one of Kingsville’s early pioneers.”

Pioneer

  • Clark Webster- Deacon Clark Webster came to Ashtabula in the year 1807 and worked Gideon Leet and Mathew Hubbard through the season. Then he returned to New York State and moved his family to Kingsville a year later. While in Buffalo, he sold his old horse for three barrels of salt, put his family and salt on board in a boat and came up Lake Erie. He remained in Ashtabla until the spring of 1809, and the he moved to Kingsville and settled down permanently.The first season, he purchased a cow with one barrel of his salt, and he had enough left to last him several years as in those days salt was seldom used in salting meat in barrels. He was an industrious man, but had many challenges because of sickness in his family, his wife being a feeble woman. His son Hiram, born in 1800, studied to be a doctor with Daniel Spencer and afterward became Kingsville’s village doctor or many years.. He is buried in Old Kingsville Corners Pioneer Cemetery.
At Home in Heaven

[1] History of the Western Reserve, Volume 3 . Harriet Taylor Upton, Harry Gardner Cutler. Lewis Publishing Company, January 1, 1910.  p. 1385.