27 December 2012

Obituary--Minnie Black

The subject of today's obituary was a long time local resident, a pioneer as the obituary states.  Born in Ohio, she nevertheless lived in Michigan from her teens and saw much change in the area.

From an October 1939 Fremont TimesIndicator:

Came to County in 1880s and Was a Garfield Township Pioneer.

Mrs. Minnie Black, a resident of Garfield township and Newaygo for more than half a century, passed away at her home on East street Monday afternoon.  She had been in failing health for some time.
Mrs. Black who, in spite of her infirmities, always ahad a smile and cherry word of greeting for her many friends, left a written record of her life and less than a week before her passing had completed arrangements for her funeral service.  The following account is therefore based on her own written record.
Minnie Etta Lloyd was born January 19, 1866 in McKay, Ashand county, Ohio, and came with her parents to Michigan in 1882 traveling in a covered wagon.  Two years later, in 1884, she was united in marriage to Myron Sylvester Black at Newaygo.  The couple purchased wild land from the Indians, in what is still know as "Old Woman's Bend," on the Muskegon river several miles below Newaygo.  They cleared their farm and made of it a comfortable home until 1927 when infirmities forced Mr. Black to give up farming.  They then purchased a home in Newaygo, where Mr. Black had resided since the death of her husband Dec. 27, 1927.
surviving are two sisters, Mrs. Phoebe Bullis, residing in Casnovia township, and Mrs. Laura VanSickle  in Rockland, Idaho, and three nephews, I. L. Bullis of Petoskey, Ben Bullis of Newaygo and Archie Bullis of Casnovia township.
Funeral services were conducted at 2:l30 yesterday afternoon from the Congregational church by Rev. Frederick Pinch.  Burial was in Newaygo cemetery.

One of the things that has happened to me while reading those old obituaries is that many of my preconceived ideas get broken.  Covered wagons were supposed to be things of the Old West, that people took when crossing the plains and the mountains.  Not while coming to Michigan!  I knew we still had many Native Americans in the area though.  And I like the fact that even today, people know about "Old Woman's Bend" on the Muskegon River.

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