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Atlas Township Obituaries

Here are obituaries for Atlas Township residents, or their descendants.  Surnames are listed alphabetically.  Women are listed alphabetically by their maiden names.  If you have any to contribute, please contact me.  Important features to include (as much as possible) are newspaper name, city, state, day and date of publication and page number.

Anna (Crothers) York
(1825 - 1904)

[Note:  Crothers was also spelled Crathers.  Over time, it evolved into its present spelling, Cruthers.]


    ANNA CRATHERS was born December 11, 1825 in Erie county, New York; died February 14, 1904.
    She passed away Sunday, at 2 o'clock at the home of her daughter [not clear which daughter] in Goodrich, where she had been staying a few days.  She was one of a large family of children, only two sisters [including Nancy] survive her.
    In 1846 she was united in marriage to John H. York of Clarence [New York]; seven children were born to this union.  They came to Michigan in 1860, where they bought the farm that has been their home ever since, where they suffered the privations of a new country and where their children were born and reared to manhood and womanhood, five of whom survive her, Mrs. Marium Frick of Ortonville, Jeremiah York of near Goodrich, N. Y. [sic - Michigan], Mrs. Ella Dillenbeck and Mrs. Matilda Watkins, both of Goodrich, and James, the oldest [sic - youngest] son, who has lived on the old farm since the father passed away, five years ago.
    About 50 years ago she was converted and united with the M. E. [Methodist Episcopal] church, living a faithful christian [sic], ever striving to uphold the banner of Christ.
    She was a good mother, a kind neighbor.  Her work is finished and the Lord has called her home.  What is our loss is her gain.
    "Asleep, in Jesus blessed, from which none ever wakes to weep." --Com.
  (from a Genesee County, Michigan-area newspaper, February 1904, submitted by Miriam Robbins Midkiff)

Nancy Amanda (Crothers) Phelps
(1839 - 1925)


    Nancy A. Cruthers was born in New York, Nov. 8th, 1839 and passed away at the home of her daughter, Mrs. Milton Drake, 506 E Cass street, August 7th, 1925, at the age of 85 years.  She was married to John S. Phelps in 1865 [sic - 1864], who departed this life 38 years ago.  She leaves to mourn her loss three daughters, thirteen grandchildren and eight great grandchildren and a wide circle of friends.  Those attending the funeral were from Linwood, Flint, Lansing, Goodrich.
    The funeral was held Monday morning at 11 o'clock at the home of her daughter, the Rev. G. S. Northrup  officiating and interment was made in Mt. Rest cemetery. 
(from a St. John's , Clinton County, Michigan-area newspaper, August 1925, submitted by Miriam Robbins Midkiff)

Philena Amanda (Douglass) Pierson
(c. 1832 - 1902)

At Goodrich, on the 28th ult., Mrs. Philena Pierson, aged seventy years.  Deceased had been a resident of this county for over fifty years and is survived by three sons, viz:  Sumner, William and Herbert, all of Goodrich.  (from Wolverine Citizen, Flint, MIchigan, Saturday, 2 August 1902, pg. 1, courtesy of Chris Scott)

George Frank Owen
(1848 - 1924)

Geo. F. Owens Passed Away
Had been resident of Crawford County 45 Yrs.
Saturday, during the night, George F. Owen, pioneer resident and estimable citizen of Crawford County, passed away at his home, after a lingering illness, due indirectly to the infirmities of old age, he having almost reached his 75 mark.  For several months he has been too feeble to leave his home.  He was given every comfort during his illness and last week when his condition became serious his children who reside away were called here and were with their father when he passed away.
    The funeral was held Tuesday afternoon at Danehod hall, and was conducted by Grayling Lodge F. & A. M, of which the deceased was a member.  Rev. J. Herman Baughn of the Michelson Memorial Church delivered an impressive sermon, and the remains were laid to rest in Elmwood cemetery.
    George Frank Owen was born in Atlas, Genessee [sic] county, Michigan, April 3rd 1848, and came to Crawford county 45 yrs ago, locating in Lovells, where he purchased considerable land and engaged in farming.  He took an active interest in civic affairs of the county and especially of Lovells township, and served as sheriff of Crawford county for two terms, between the years 1900 and 1904.
    He was married at the age of 28 years to Ella Donahue to whom were born eight children, five of whom survive.  Several years ago Mr. Owen retired from his labors and came to Grayling to reside.  He was a very fine old gentleman and always bore a sterling character, and was held in deep affection by the members of his family.
    Besides his wife, three sons and two daughters survive, Ray, Glenn and Charles of Detroit, Mrs. L. Warner of Bay City, and Mrs. Holger Schmidt of this city.  In attendance at the funeral other than these above mentioned were a sister, Mrs. F. Buzzell and husband of Flint and a brother Charles Owen and wife of Ortonville. 
(from The Crawford Avalance, Grayling, Crawford Co., Michigan, Thursday, 16 October 1924, courtesy of Karen Haggard)

Minerva L. (Parsons) Sweers
(1881 - 1949)

Sweers, Mrs. Minerva L.
2109 Forest Hill Ave., Flint
Age 67, passed away March 11, 1949 at Hollywood, Calif., after a sudden illness.  Minerva L. Parsons was born in Burton Township, Michigan, Sept 7, 1881.  She lived in Saginaw for 29 years coming to Flint 4 years ago to live with her sister, Mrs. Elizabeth Hempstead of 2109 Forest Hill Avenue.  Surviving are one sister, Mrs. Elizabeth Hempstead of Flint, 1 brother, Fred W. Parsons of Flint, several nieces and nephews.  Services will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday, March 19th from the Groves & Co. Funeral Home, Saginaw and Fifth Avenue, Flint.  Rev. John LeVan officiating. Burial in Avontine Cemetery.  Remains will be at the funeral home.  (from Saginaw News, Saginaw, Michigan, Thursday, 17 March 1949, pg. 33, courtesy of Ruby Foust)

Delos D. Pierson
(1828 - 1902)

Delos D. Pierson, who was taken sick a few weeks ago while on a business trip to Kansas and was later brought to the home of his son, Sumner Pierson, in Atlas Township, died on Wednesday.  Deceased was born in New York in 1828 and came to this county over fifty years ago, settling in Atlas which place he made his home up to a few years ago when he came to Flint to reside.  Besides his wife he leaves three sons, Sumner, Herbert and William.  Two brothers and two sisters also survive him, viz: E. J. and C. C. Pierson of Flint; Mrs. E. B. Rust of Atlas; Mrs. Anna Bainbridge, of Santa Barbara, Cal.  (from Wolverine Citizen, Flint,  Michigan, Saturday, 26 April 1902, pg. 4, courtesy of Chris Scott)

Philena Miriam (Pierson) Putnam
(1884 - 1964)

PUTNAM -- Philena M. -- 3929 Sunset Vista Dr., Malibu, California, age 80, died Monday, September 21, 1964, in Malibu, California.  Graveside services will be held at 11 a.m. Friday at the Goodrich Cemetery, Goodrich, Michigan, Rev. William Wurzel officiating.  Burial in Goodrich Cemetery.  Mrs. Putnam may be viewed at the C. F. Sherman Funeral Home, Ortonville.  She was born in Goodrich, Michigan on September 7, 1884, the daughter of William and Addie Pierson.  She was a member of the Goodrich Methodist Church.  Surviving are: Son, David Putnam of Drayton Plains, Michigan; 2 daughters, Mrs. Betty Morton of Malibu, California, and Mrs. Billie Jean Pearcy of Salem, Oregon; 5 grandchildren; 3 sisters, Mattie Richards of Davison, Michigan, Mrs. Gertrude Brous of Portland, Oregon, Mrs. Gladys Bain of Long Beach, California.  (from The Flint Journal, Flint, Michigan, Thursday, 24 February 1964, unknown page, courtesy of Chris Scott)

George Frost Putnam
(1881 - 1952)

PUTNAM - George Frost Putnam, age 80, died Friday, March 21, 1952 in the Goodrich General Hospital.  Funeral services will be held at 2  p.m., Monday, March 24, 1952, from the Goodrich Community Methodist Church.  Rev. Albert Coleman and Rev. Roy Johns officiating.  Burial in Goodrich Cemetery.  Mr. Putnam may be seen at the Clarence W. Hill Funeral Home, Grand Blanc, until 12 noon Monday.  He will then lie in state at the church until time of services.  He was born in Goodrich and lived there the last 44 years.  Surviving are:  Wife, Ida, 2 daughters, Mrs. A. W. Gorman of Boulder, Colo., and Mrs. Harold L. Black of State College, Pennsylvania; 7 grandchildren.  (from unknown newspaper, date unknown, courtesy of Chris Scott)

Mrs. Ida May Putnam
wife of George Frost Putnam
(unknown dates)

Ida May Putnam
Former Goodrich resident, dies
    HOWELL -- Services for Mrs. Ida May Putnam, 89, who died Thursday at the Bonnie View Convalescent Home here after a brief illness, will be at 2 p.m. Monday at the Schnackenberg Funeral Home.  Burial will be in Goodrich Cemetery, Goodrich.
    Mrs. Putnam lived in Goodrich for many years before moving to Howell several years ago to live with a daughter, Mrs. Grace Black Bloomquist, 308 W. Washington St.
    She leaves besides a daughter, Mrs. A. W. Gorman, San Diego, Calif.; a sister, Mrs. Cora Horner, Eaton Rapids; eight grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren.  (from unknown newspaper, after 1952, courtesy of Chris Scott)

William Henry Putnam, II
(1840 - 1905)

A Valued Citizen
Wm. H. Putnam died at his home at Goodrich this morning.
Special to the Daily News

Goodrich, June 7, -- Wm. H. Putnam died at his home in this village this morning, aged sixty years. He was an old resident of this township and highly respected, having been supervisor and postmaster of this village. He is survived by three children. They are Mrs. Nelson Strong, George and Will of Eaton Rapids. He also leaves a brother and two sisters. They are Edward, of Port Huron; Mrs. John VanTine, of Flint city, and Mrs. Sarah Sawyer, of Livingston County. The funeral will be held on Friday. 
(from Flint Daily News, Flint, Michigan, Wednesday, 7 June 1905, pg. 7, courtesy of Chris Scott)

William Jonathan Putnam
(1884 - 1940)

More than 500 pay tribute to W. J. Putman (sic), Goodrich
Endeared himself to host; was named Postmaster for lifetime
    Over 500 friends and relatives assembled in the Wheelock Auditorium, Saturday at 2:30 p.m. to pay final tribute to Wm. J. Putnam, aged 55, who passed away at Goodrich Hospital Thursday, April 18, 1940, after an illness of three month's duration.  Dr. James McGee of the Methodist church officiated and interment was made in Goodrich cemetery.
    Wm. J. Putnam was born in Goodrich, July 21, 1884, the son of Wm. H. and Rhoda Putnam.  He received his early schooling here, then attended high school in Flint and Eaton Rapids and later graduated from the Ferris Institute in Big Rapids.  After a year in the Upper Peninsular, where he owned and operated a saw-mill, he returned to Goodrich.
    In 1909 in partnership with Homer Day, he purchased the Seth B. Pixley building and the stock of D. M. Scriver's General Store, and opened a hardware and grocery business, which for years was known as "Day and Putnam."  In 1920 he bought out Homer Day and has run the business since that time known as W. J. Putnam & Co.
    Wm. J. Putnam was a popular man for more than his affable and congenial ways, for during his life he played an active and important role in the history of this community, and his death marks a great loss.  For 15 years he served as treasurer of the school board and for 22 years was an active member of the Goodrich Cemetery association, serving 14 years as secretary and treasurer and the balance of that time as member of the board of directors.  For years he was Village Deputy. Mr. Putnam was Village Postmaster from 1914 to 1919 and from 1923 to the present time, making a total of 22 years.  In 1923 he built the brick building, east and adjoining his store, for a post office and only last January was appointed Postmaster for life.  Mr. Putnam was the third generation to serve as Postmaster, his grandfather Wm. Henry Putnam and his father Wm. Henry Putnam, Jr. both serving as Postmaster for several years.
    On September 27, 1915, he married Philena Pierson and moved in the new home he had built on State Street.  He leaves besides his widow, two daughters, Mrs. Howard Morton of Memphis, Tenn., and Billie Jean at home; one son, David Wm. of Goodrich; two grandchildren; one brother, George F. and a sister Mrs. Mary Strong of Goodrich; several nieces and nephews and a host of sorrowing friends.  (from unknown newspaper, after 18 April 1940, courtesy of Chris Scott)

    Mr. and Mrs. Murray Brigham of Flint spent the week end with their parents, Mrs. and Mrs. Chas. Brigham.
    Relatives attending the funeral of W. J. Putnam on Saturday were Wm. Strong of Jackson, Mr. and Mrs. Frank Strong of Eaton Rapids, Mr. and Mrs. Wm. H. Putnam and Mr. and Mrs. Schmelzer of Detroit, Mr. and Mrs. Shirley Busby of Pt. Huron, Mr. and Mrs. Wm. H. Horton, Sumner G. Horton, Mrs. Wendle Waite, Mrs. Ed Cummings, Mrs. John Fegley and Mr. and Mrs. Leach of Flint; Mrs. Mark Hatch and Mrs. Norman Weaver of Okemos, Mr. and Mrs. Lloyd Doan of Mason and Mrs. H. L. Black of New Wilmington, Pa. Friends also came from Gaylord, Flint, Holly, Davison, Hadley, Grand Blanc and Eaton Rapids.  (from unknown newspaper, after 18 April 1940, courtesy of Chris Scott)

Daniel E. Salisbury
(1830 - 1901)

"Ex-Ald. Salisbury dead"
Succumbed to a stroke of apoplexy last evening.
     Daniel E. Salisbury, who sustained a stroke of apoplexy nearly two weeks ago, died last evening at 7 o'clock at his home, 512 Avon Street. Mr. Salisbury was born in New York state on May 4, 1830, and when a child came to Genesee County with his parents, who located in Burton township. He was married at the age of twenty-seven years to Mary A. Beebe, who died in 1889. A few years ago he married Adelia Montague, by whom he is survived. He also leaves a son, Arthur D., and a brother, Dr. A.D. Salisbury of Ann Arbor.
    Since retiring from farming several years ago the deceased had made his home in this city. He took an active interest in municipal affairs and represented the Second Ward in the council from 1897 to 1899. He was a member of the Presbyterian Church; was widely esteemed in the circle of his acquaintance.
    Rev. Charles A. Lippincott will conduct services at the house of Friday at 1:30 o'clock and interment will be made in Avondale cemetery.  (from Flint Daily News, Flint, Michigan, Wednesday, 10 April 1901, pg. 8, courtesy of Chris Scott)

David A. Salisbury
(c. 1832 - 1893)y

"Another Old Citizen Gone."
    David A. Salisbury died at 6 o'clock Tuesday morning at the home of his son, E. A. Salisbury, in the Fourth Ward aged 61 years.  The deceased moved to this county 45 years ago from Oakland County, and before entering upon farming taught school.  His home was in Burton for a number of years. Later he engaged in the mercantile business at Goodrich and followed it for a number of years.  During the last few years he had been on a farm in the town of Davison.  Last fall he moved to Hadley, Lapeer County, and re-engaged in the mercantile business with his son W. D. and Milo Stimson under the firm name of Salisbury and Stimson.  About ten weeks ago he was taken sick at the home of his daughter, Mrs. Will Pierson, in Atlas, but recovered sufficiently to be able to come to Flint about five weeks ago.  He seemed to improve for some days, but a relapse followed and from that time his decline was steady and rapid.  The cause of death was heart disease, with which he had been troubled for some years.  He leaves two sons and a daughter--E.A. of this city, and W.D. of Hadley, and Mrs. Will Pierson, of Atlas, also two brothers, D.E. of this city, and Dr. A.D. of Ann Arbor.  His wife, who was a daughter of the late Daniel Estes, of Burton, preceded him to the grave by about five years.  He had also buried a son and a daughter.  He was a member of the Methodist church, a good man, a true friend, and enjoyed the confidence of all who knew him.  The funeral was held at Goodrich Thursday afternoon at 1 o'clock.  (from Genesee Democrat, Saturday, 3 June 1893, pg. 4, courtesy of Chris Scott)

Mary Jane (Sawyer) Putnam
(1811 - 1899)

Death of an aged resident.
    Mrs. Mary J. Putnam, widow of the late W. H. Putnam, died last Saturday at 10:30 p.m. at the residence of her daughter, Mrs. John VanTine, in the Second ward.  The cause of death was paralysis, with which Mrs. Putnam was stricken down on the 1st inst. while on a visit to her daughter in this city.  She never rallied from the attack, although conscious until a short time before death.
    Deceased was born in Massachusetts 77 years ago on the 3d of last November and when a child removed to the State of New York with her parents.  At the age of 18 she was married to her late husband, who died 10 years ago. In 1836 the family came to Michigan and settled at Goodrich.  That village has since been Mrs. Putnam's home, as after the death of her husband she took up her residence with her son W.H. Putnam, who with Edward J. Putnam, of Montmorency county.  Mrs. Sarah J. Sawyer of Ingham County, and Mrs. VanTine of this city all children of the deceased, are left to mourn her death.  Benj. Sawyer, a brother of the deceased, is also a resident of Ingham County.
    The remains were interred in the cemetery at Goodrich on Tuesday at 10 a.m.  (from Genesee Democrat, Flint, Michigan, 13 July 1889, pg. 1, courtesy of Chris Scott)

    The widow of the late William H. Putnam of Goodrich, died at the home of her daughter, Mrs. John VanTine, in this City, on the 6th inst.  The deceased was a woman possessed of many sterling traits of character and was highly esteemed by a large circle of acquaintances.  She had been a resident of Genesee County for about fifty-five years. 
(from Wolverine Citizen, Flint, Michigan, Saturday, 13 July 1889, pg. 5, courtesy of Chris Scott)

Manley Sweers
(1808 - 1893)

[Note:  This obituary was not written well, and in some sentences, it is not always clear whether the subject is Manley or his father, Daniel Swears, III.  Using other resources, I have injected several notes to clarify the meaning.  Although this obituary is titled for two individuals, my copy has been cut off at the end of the part dedicated to Manley Sweers's life.  I do not have further information on Rev. Jewell.]

Rev. J. B. Jewell of Gaines and Manley Sweers of Atlas Have Passed Away

    Manley Sweers, who died Dec. 13, 1894, was born in Wooster [sic - Worcester, Washington County], Vermont, Aug. 28, 1808.  When he was eight months old his parents moved to a place in Canada near the Chippewa creek [Chippewa, Welland County, Ontario].  In 1812 the great war broke out with Great Britain and they were going to press his father into the army.  To escape the press-gang [Daniel] came to the states.  At this time the battle of Chippewa or Black Rock was in progress and [Manley] with his mother well remember of [sic] seeing the British go up to battle in the morning and return in the afternoon, the wounded being drawn in ox-carts.  Soon after his uncle [probably Peter Swears, who served as a private in the Second Lincoln Militia of the British army] went to Captain Cummings and told him the situation of the family and [Cummings] allowed her to go down to the [Niagara] river where she flagged the boats and they came and came and carried the family across, where they joined [Manley's] father and then proceeded to the town of Clarence, Erie county, N. Y.
    After a short time [Daniel] left his family with a rich man by the name of Beman [sic - Beeman] and elisted [sic] in the American army under Chapens [Chapens' Company, New York Militia].  When the war closed, [Manley and his family] returned home and soon after removed to the town of Gorham in Hunt's Hollow [Ontario County, New York].  He remembered of [sic] seeing the stakes stuck for the Erie canal.  He worked on it and after it was completed boated on it for about a year.
    When a young man he visited his uncle in Canada near Queenstown Heights and worked on the Wellington canal, drawing earth from a deep cut with an ox team.  He returned to N. Y. and in 1833 when 26 years of age, he married Lydia Vanclieve [sic - Van Cleve].  The next year a son (Spencer) was born to them.
    In the winter of 1835-6 he with his brother Daniel [Jr.] came with one horse from N. Y. through Canada to Michigan , where he took up his land on Sec. 26, Town of Atlas, Genesee county, from the U. S. Government, which was ever after his home.  He  hired a man to build him a log cabin and in exchange gave him the horse which he had brought with him.  He then returned in N. Y., and on the 15th of May, 1836, he with his family came to their new home, coming by wagon from Detroit.
    When they arrived here their house was not completed.  There were neither windows or a door and a blanket had to be substituted for a door.  It was three miles to the nearest neighbors and Detroit was the nearest market from which he brought all their provision with an ox team.  The first barrel of flour he bought cost him $12 and the first wheat he sold for 44c a bushel.  Under such conditions supporting a large family and clearing up a farm was rather a hard life.  But he with his faithful wife who preceded him to the farther shore Sept. 30, 1891, overcame all of them.
  (from an unknown Genesee County, Michigan-area newspaper, December 1894, submitted by Miriam Robbins Midkiff)

Milo "Abe" A. Sweers
(1878 - 1944)

Milo Sweers, 66, a resident of Saginaw for 24 years, died Sunday at his home, 411 North Fifth.  He was born Aug. 18, 1878, in Burton township, Genesee County.  He leaves his wife, Minerva; one brother, Lewis Sweers of Port Huron; one sister, Mrs. Lottie Tanner of Detroit.  He will be at the Wallace & Honey funeral home until 11 a.m. Tuesday and then will be taken to the Groves funeral home at Flint for funeral services at 1 p.m. Wednesday.  Burial will be in Avondale, Flint.  (From Saginaw News, Saginaw, Michigan, Monday, 24 Dec 1944, pg. 17, courtesy of Ruby Foust)

Harriet (Wood) Manning Crothers
(1822 - 1893)

    HARRIET CRUTHERS was born in New York, November 11, 1822, and died with a cancer February 14, 1893.
    The departed mother, who has been married twice (both husbands have passed on before) leaves one daughter and two sons to mourn her loss.  The funeral was held in Goodrigeville [sic - Goodrich, Michigan].  The writer preached the sermon from Psalms 90: 12.    J. A. MOTT 
(from a Genesee County, Michigan-area newspaper, February 1893, submitted by Miriam Robbins Midkiff)

Howard Merkel York
(1898 - 1945)

Former Lake Orion Man Passes Away Suddenly
    Howard York, 47, former Lake Orion resident, died suddenly at his home on M-21, near Lapeer, last week Thursday.
    He was born in Ortonville [sic - other records indicate he was born in Goodrich] Sept. 17, 1898, and had lived in or near Lapeer for the past several years. Surviving are his widow and two sons, Howard Paul and Peter Alfred; also his step-mother, Mrs. Mary York, of Cadillac.
    Funeral services were held Saturday at 1 p.m. at the Baird Funeral Home, Lapeer, with burial in Stiles Cemetery.
(from Orion Weekly Review [Lake Orion, Michigan], Friday, 30 November 1945, pg. 1, submitted by Miriam Robbins Midkiff)

James L. York
(1867 - 1933)

James L. York
     James L. York died Friday at his home in Lake Orion here following a long illness.  The body will be at his late residence until 10 a. m. Monday and service will be at Allen's Funeral Home at 2 p. m. Monday with burial in Goodrich cemetery.  Rev. F. R. Walker will officiate. 
(from Pontiac {Michigan] Daily Press, Saturday, 16 September 1933, pg. 6, submitted by Miriam Robbins Midkiff)


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