Pgs 721 – 23
WILLIAM H. SANDERS.
The Eastern States have given to their younger sister – the Western and
Northwestern States – some of their most progressive and prosperous citizens,
among whom it is a pleasurable duty to include the gentleman whose name
Mr. Sanders is a native of the State of Massachusetts born April
28, 1820, in the then village of Heath, Franklin county, a son of William
and Fannie (Bell) Sanders, the former of whom, a carpenter and joiner by
trade, wad of Halifax, Vt., nativity, whence he moved to Massachusetts,
where he married, and had a family of four children, namely: William H.;
Caroline, deceased wife of Julius Sevens, of Omro, who left six children—Charles,
Frank, William, Julia, Gusta, and Mary, wife of Jul Armstrong, of Fort
Howard; Emerson, a farmer in Missouri, and Almyra, married to Ezra Canada,
and living in Lynn, Mass. (they have four or five children).
Our subject received very limited educational advantages, the
school being a long way from his home, and, moreover, being the eldest
in the family, he had to assist in the support of the others, at the early
age of ten years commencing to help clear the forest. As he grew in years,
his duties increased in proportion, and he had to work all the harder,
at the same time learning his father's trade. He remained at home until
was twenty-one years old, at which time he was working at his trade, and
took unto self a wife, which event will be fully mentioned farther on.
Buying some land in Massachusetts, he followed farming and carpentry
for about five years, as well as sawmilling, owning a mill
at Stamford, Vt. In 1850, accompanied by his wife and four children, Mr.
Sanders came west to Wisconsin, their starting point being North Adams,
Mass., the journey to Milwaukee being made by rail and water. They
remained in the latter city some nine weeks, during which time our subject
worked on the first railroad depot built there. From Milwaukee they came
by team to Fond du Lac, thence by steamboat to Oshkosh, where Mr. Sanders
purchased a row boat in which the family rowed on the river to Belle Plaine
township, taking their goods and chattels along with them. This trip occupied
nine days, the family sleeping on the river bank nights, and, once arrived,
our subject took up one hundred acres of land, but until it was surveyed
they camped on the river bank. This property is in Section 1 and comprised
160 acres of wild land, at which time there were but two white families
in Shawano -- those of James Grimmer and Charles Wescart. Mr. Sanders
built, somewhere down the river, a comfortable log house, or shanty, 24
x 16 feet, covered with boards, and polled it up the stream to its destination.
He had no team for a whole year, but he had his carpenter tools (and has
some of them yet), and for a time made shingles, which he took to Oshkosh
and traded for provisions. He also made a churn for his wife, the first
she had ever used, and, as a fact, the only one, for she never had any
other; and also the first table for the dining-room, besides buckets for
the maple-sap run. Today they have eighty acres cleared, making as nice
a farm as is to be found in this section of the county.
In 1841 Mr. Sanders was married to Miss Sarah Maria Burrington,
also a native of Massachusetts, born December 28, 1822, in Colerain, Franklin
county, daughter of William and Sarah M. Wells, respectable farming
people of Colerain, who were the parents of four children, as follows:
Adeline, wife of George Warner, a landlord in Massachusetts, who has reared
one child; Sarah Maria, Mrs. Sanders; Eliza, who married Dwight Newell,
a farmer, and died leaving four children; and Lewis, deceased in Pennsylvania.
After the death of the father of these, in 1839, the widowed mother moved
to Pennsylvania, where she married Levi Maynard, and died in that State.
To Mr. and Mrs. Sanders were born four children, a brief record of whom
is as follows: Almyra, who married Henry T. Garfield (a cousin of President
Garfield), and now deceased, leaving one son, Byron of Shawano (her husband
now lives in Milwaukee); Elizabeth A., now Mrs. William Parker, who
has had five children—Jennie M. (deceased), Alfred W., Lettie R, Dora J.
and Warren R.; Sarah Jane, who married Burns McAllister, and died leaving
three children —George, Wallie and William all living; and William, a farmer
in Belle Plaine, married and has five children. In his political predilections,
our subject is a Republican, and he was the second postmaster at Belle
Plaine, serving in that incumbency six years. Such is an outline sketch
of William H. Sanders, which presents a striking example of enterprise,
industry and integrity, conducting to eminent success, and a comfortable
competence for his declining years.