William Hall, 1838-1927, and his wife, Sarah Elizabeth (Davis) Hall, 1845-1876
William Hall was born on 29 June 1838 probably in Shelby Twp., Macomb Co., Michigan, which is where his parents were living during the 1840 census. William was the seventh of eleven children born to Parsons and Olive (Williams) Hall. By 1844 they had moved to Woodland Twp., Barry Co., Mich., and they are listed there in the 1850 census when William was 12 years old. In 1853 they moved to a small farm in Bushnell Twp., Montcalm Co., and most of the family is listed there during the 1860 census. However, William has not been located in this census. Around that time he was headed for Trimbelle Twp., Pierce Co., Wisconsin. He was living there when he married Sarah Davis in June of 1862, and they were living there two months later when he enlisted in the 30th Wisconsin Volunteer Infantry Regiment. Sarah Elizabeth Davis, wife of William, was born on 3 September 1845 (according to a family Bible). She was born in Maine according to various census and vital records. The following marriage affidavit is in William Hall's pension file:
"This certifies that I, Chas. S. LeDuc, [a minister of the Presbyterian Church in Hastings, Minnesota, located about 18 miles west of Trimbelle]..., united in matrimony Mr. William Hall of Trimbelle, Wisconsin, and Miss Sarah E. Davis of the same place on the 29th day of June A.D. 1862 at Hastings, Minn..." The 1860 census shows Sarah Davis, age 14, born in Maine, living with (presumably) her father, James Davis, 44, born in New Hampshire; and her brother (presumably), Leander Davis, 20. Note that next door to the Davis family in this census was the family of Ferguson Gould. Ferguson had lived in Ronald Twp., Ionia Co., Michigan (adjacent to Bushnell Twp., Montcalm Co.), during the 1850 census. His uncle, David Ferguson, married William's sister, Mary (Hall) Ferguson, so apparently William met Sarah through the Gould/Ferguson family. Also note that, like William Hall, Ferguson Gould enlisted in the 30th Wisconsin Vol. Inf. Reg't in August of 1862.
This 30th Wisconsin Regiment in which William served was recruited under the call of July 1862, and the regimental organization was completed in October of 1862 at Camp Randall near Madison, Wisconsin. Regimental headquarters remained at Camp Randall during the war and most of the services of the regiment were performed within Wisconsin and pertained to the enforcement of the Draft. However, in April of 1864 part of the regiment, including Company A in which William served, embarked on a steamer and moved up the Missouri River to help establish Fort Rice in the Dakota Territory (for a brief history of this fort see http://history.nd.gov/historicsites/rice/index.html). In October of 1864 they descended the Missouri River and in November they arrived in Louisville, Ky., where they were assigned guard duty at a military prison. According to his pension application William contracted measles at Shelsburgh, Wis., in December 1862, and in July of 1865 he contracted typhoid fever and was hospitalized in Louisville. According to Wikipedia a total of two men of the 30th Wisconsin were killed in action during the Civil War while 67 died of disease. Note that three of William's brothers (Moses, David, and Thomas) also served during the Civil War and all three died of disease.
According to William's pension application, "On my arriving home after discharge my family had removed from Wisconsin to Bushnell Mich. [William and Sarah's first two children, Nettie and Rosa, were born in Bushnell Twp. in 1863 and 1866]. When I rejoined them I was completely prostrated, my head was badly affected, lungs sore, had a bad cough, and when I made the least exertion my heart bothered me. In fact, I appeared to have no strength left. That condition continued for 18 months, and then my deafness has continued to get worse and for the last year I have had to quit work entirely in consequence of my heart difficulty." He stayed in Bushnell Twp. until the spring of 1867. "I then moved to Kankakee, Illinois, remained there till the latter part of 1868. I then moved to Renville Co., Minnesota..." Note that William's brother, Edwin, was living in Kankakee at the time, and William's brother, Frank, was living at Renville. Also living in Renville was William's sister, Mary, and her husband David Ferguson. They were all farming next to each other during the 1870 census of Beaver Falls, Renville Co. William's farm consisted of 10 acres of improved land and 70 acres unimproved land plus they owned one milk cow. William and Sarah's next two children, Frank and Edwin, were born in Minnesota in 1869 and 1872. "...I then moved back to Kankakee, Ill. [William and Sarah's youngest child, Thomas, was born there in 1874], from there to Bushnell, Mich. I resided there until in 1876." This is when Sarah, his wife of nearly 14 years, died on 15 May 1876 [the death date is from a family Bible record -- there is no death record at the court house]. Sarah was buried in Snows Cemetery in Ronald Twp., Ionia Co. There is no known photo of Sarah but reportedly she had red hair. She left William with five children ranging from one to thirteen years of age. After this he and his children moved to Cedron Twp., Lincoln Co., Kansas, where they are listed in the 1880 census. His brothers, Frank and Edwin, also lived in or near Cedron in 1880, but during the 1880's they both moved to Oregon. William visited Oregon around this time -- the following photos were taken in Oregon: William with his brother, Frank, was taken by the photographer, Herman Putzien, at Canyon City, Ore., and the other photo was taken at Rockaway, Oregon, and shows William and Frank seated (with Frank's wife, Hattie, between them), and their brother, Edwin, standing (it is not known who the younger couple is).
William reported in his pension application that he moved to Mecosta Co., Mich., in 1887. During the 1890 veterans census he was living at Deciple, Fork Twp., Mecosta Co., and deafness was listed as a disability. In the 1900 census William, age 61, was boarding with the Ezra Pierce family in Bushnell Twp. and his occupation was listed as a laborer in a saw mill. Judging from the age of the children the following photo of the Hall family reunion was taken about 1901 probably in Bushnell Twp. Seated on the left is William Hall with his granddaughter, Alice, on his lap. Directly behind William is his daughter, Nettie, and her husband, George Rich. Next to Nettie is Bertha (Ketchum) Hall and her husband, Thomas Hall (Bertha and Thomas are parents of Alice, who would have been three years old in 1901). Most of the folks in this photo are not known, but the lady seated toward the right is William's daughter, Rosa, with her daughter, Elsie, age two, on her lap. Seated next to Rosa is her daughter, Estella, who would have been 12 years old in 1901.
William lived with his daughter, Rosa (Hall) Haysmer, and her family on their farm east of Sheridan, Mich., for the last 26 years of his life (photo below is Rosa and William).
William died on 14 March 1927 in Evergreen Twp., Montcalm Co., Mich., and was buried in Sheridan Cemetery. Although Sarah was buried in a different cemetery (Snows Cemetery) they had similar headstones:
Finally, William Hall reportedly made the child's crib now belonging to Steve and Sarah (Adams) Bowers. Below is their son, Jack (William's gr-gr-gr-great grandson) in the crib:
© 2008 - , Thomas D. Adams