Blackwell Genealogy                                                          
Children of George Blackwell
of 1801

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George Blackwell 1801 | Children of George Blackwell 1801 |
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George Blackwell Jr. | Children of George Blackwell |
| Henry Blackwell | Children of Henry Blackwell |
| William Blackwell | Children of William Blackwell |
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Children of George Blackwell 10.2 and Mary Barradell          Note the Colour Codes and Number System     

11th Generation   Children of George Blackwell 10.2 and Mary Barradell 
Married: 4 Mar. 1824 Cowley, Gloucester, England  
Parish of Badgeworth  (Near Cheltenham)
Children of George Blackwell and Mary Barradell
Children of George Blackwell and Mary Barradell
12th Generation Children of George Blackwell and Mary Barradell
10.2.1 Elizabeth Blackwell   
10.2.2 Sophia Blackwell
10.2.3 John Blackwell
10.2.4 George Blackwell
10.2.5 Henry Blackwell
10.2.6 William Blackwell 
adopted.   Complete Name is  James W. Blackwell

The Children are the principal players in this Blackwell Genealogy.  It is their offspring that built the families we have today. 
Click on their names to be taken to their information on this page.


 Census 1851 Cheltenham, Gloucester, England  Entry #91
 Census 1851 Cheltenham, Gloucester, England  Entry #91

BLACKWELL, George    50  Gardener        Brimsfield        
Mary                               53   Milliner          Withington      
Elizabeth                        24   Milliner          Brockworth       
Sophia                            22   Dressmaker  Badgworth        
Henry                             11   Scholar          Leckhampton   
William                             6   Scholar          Charlton Kings    

Missing from the 1851 Census:  John Blackwell (10.2.3)  George Blackwell (10.2.4)
They left for Canada in 1849 or 50.  This is why they were not in the Census.

This entry from the 1851 Census is what turned the tide for our Blackwell Family.  Up to this point, we had only suspicions that John Blackwell was not the primary leader of our Family from England to America as previously believed.  This report gave us enough detail to know exactly where to dig into the family history that was online.  Since that time, we have confirmed this information with details from Parish Registers in England and other sources.





Elizabeth Blackwell
Elizabeth Blackwell
1st Born of George Blackwell Sr. 10.2 and Mary Barradell

Elizabeth Blackwell  
Elizabeth Blackwell 10.2.1   1827 - 1865
12th Generation Elizabeth Blackwell  10.2.1        General Information
b. 1827 Brockworth, Gloucester, England 
Sources - 1851 Census -
d. abt 1865. 
We think in 1865 in Cheltenham as this was the home of the family - (1851 Census)
n the 1851 Census Elizabeth is listed as 24 and is a Milliner.  It shows her birth place as Brockworth.

No Children are known.  No Marriage has been discovered for her at this time.
It is possible that she did marry, and resided in Cheltenham or Shurdington.  I only suggest this because Shurdington is the location that Mary Barradell-Blackwell was buried after her death in November of 1864.  This is speculation only and is based on the idea that Mary lived with Elizabeth as Mary would not have been able to care for herself, and because Elizabeth died less then a year later.  We have no information on Elizabeth outside of what is shown on this website. (REB)

Parish of Withington
Photo 9a

General Information
General Information - Elizabeth Blackwell
In 1851, George Sr. 10.2 and his younger son Henry 10.2.5 left sometime after the British 1851 census was taken.  The Census was taken early in the year in 1851.  He then followed his two eldest sons, but instead of sailing to Montreal, they landed in New York.  On Nov. 12. 1864, Mary Barradell Blackwell died.  One year later, Elizabeth took ill and she also died.  That left Sophia 10..2.2 and William Blackwell 10.2.6 alone in England.  This Information was noted by the Twichell Memoirs and confirmed later.

Elizabeth would have been the dominant member in the organization of the family in the latter years.  It must have been a strenuous life for Elizabeth but she stayed to the very end.  It is possible that Elizabeth did marry and took the family in to live with them.  However, no records have been uncovered to show this.  I have not been able to find any records after 1851 of Elizabeth.  Possibly she moved to the location of her husband that is unknown to us.  Record searches will have to be done in England from this point on.  However, it is doubtful that she would have left her ailing mother far behind.  Since Elizabeth herself was ill, she probably remained in Cheltenham where the family home was.  We know her mother lived in Cheltenham at the time of her death on November 12 1864.  (Buried in Shurdington; just out of Cheltenham)  It is my opinion that Elizabeth remained in Cheltenham to the end.  She may be buried in Shurdington next to her Mother or in Shurdington beside her unknown husband.  I will try for contact with Shurdington for a parish record search that could resolve this question. 




Sophia Blackwell
Sophia Blackwell
2nd Born of George Blackwell Sr. 10.2 and Mary Barradell

Sophia Blackwell
Sophia Blackwell  10.2.2  1830 - 1901
12th Generation Sophia Blackwell 10.2.2        Obituary of Sophia    Death of Sophia    Census for Sophia 1880
b. 1830 Badgworth, Gloucester, England. 
(Census 1851) ( Tombstone reads - "Died aged 71 Years")    Obits. below.
d. 18 Jan 1901  Alexandria, Minnesota
Married:  24  Jan  1871 
Mr. George W. Frost                                            Obituary of George    Death of George Frost    Civil War Information    Census for George 1880
b. 1844 Belmont, Waldo County, Maine
d. 31 Jan 1897  Alexandria, Minnesota. 
(age 54 ) Obits. below
Children of Sophia Blackwell 10.2.2 and George W. Frost
Children of Sophia and George          Go To 3rd Born Child of George and Mary
"Lois Twichell indicated in her memoirs that she did not think there were any children from this marriage."
Searches for family have failed to yield any results.  It is assumed that no children existed.  If you have information - Contact Us

Note:  Marriage Witnesses were Henry Blackwell and Amanda Blackwell (VanLoon)  - Married by John Salmons
1880 US
1880 US Census for Sophia Blackwell

Birth Year:                              1836
Birthplace:                              England
Age:                                        44
Marital Status:                       Married
Head of Household:               George W. Frost
Relation:                                 Wife
Father's  Birthplace:              England
Mother's Birthplace:              England

Possible error in Census.  Sophia died at age 71 in 1901. (Obituary Source)  This is identical to her age as we have listed.  However, the Census shows her as born in 1836, a variance of 6 years.  This is an error.  Oddly enough, her husband was born in 1836.  It could have been entered wrong by the Census Taker.  Also note that she states she is 44, when in 1880 she would be 50  It is possible she listed her self as 44 possibly to hide the fact that her husband was only 37 years of age in 1880.  Actually, there was a difference of 13 years between them.  So, we have two reasons why her age in 1880 is recorded wrong.  Either an error in the birth year by the Census People, or Sophia stated she was 44 instead of 50.  I suggest the most likely scenario is that the year was recorded wrong and the Census Taker filled in the blanks concerning her age by subtracting the birth year from the Census Year. 
1880 US George
1880 US Census for George Frost
Birthplace:                             ME
Age:                                       37
Occupation:                          Farmer
Marital Status:                      Married
Race:                                     White
Head of Household:              George W. Frost
Relation:                                Self
Father's  Birthplace:             ME
Mother's Birthplace:             ME

The 1880 Census for George Frost gives accurate information.  We show the birth year as 1844, while the Census show it as 1843.  This would be due to the month of birth relative to the month of the Census.  This results of an age of 37

Holy Trinity Parish
Photo 12

Death of Sophia Frost - nee Blackwell  Death of Sophia Frost - nee Blackwell
Death of Sophia Frost - nee Blackwell
"She went shopping in downtown Alexandria and on her way home she fell.  She died shortly after of Apoplexy."  (LCB Memoirs)

Sophia and her husband are buried in the VanLoon Cemetery near Holmes City, MN.
Married:  25 Jan 1871  Holmes City Township, Minnesota.
Sophia would have been 41 when she was married.  George would have been 27.  
Sophia is shown in the 1851 Census as 22, a Dressmaker born in Badgworth.

Alexandria, Minnesota  1907   6 years after Sophia died here                        Alexandria MN in 1858
Alexandria MN - 1907                    Alexandria MN 1858
What Sophia's Alexandria looked like when she died and upon her arrival.
Photo 13a                                   Photo 13b

Sophia remained in England with her ill mother, sister Elizabeth and brother William while George Sr, John, George and Henry went to Canada and the United States in 1849 and 1851.  Her mother, Mary Barradell - Blackwell, died 12 Nov. 1864 and that left Elizabeth in charge.  However, she died  shortly after her mother. (within one year - probably 1865)  They both may have died in Cheltenham as we know this was their home at the time of the Census and departure of the other members of the family.  I suggest that Sophia and William came to America within a year of Elizabeth's death.  This is without proof at this time but it seems that it would be the logical thing for them to do.  Also, comments from Lois in her memoirs lead to this conclusion as she makes statements to this effect at the time George Jr. 10.2.4 visited his father in 1877 in Holmes City.  We know for a fact that Sophia was in Minnesota in 1871 as she was married at that time in Holmes City Township.  I suspect they arrived in 1866 during the most calm time to cross the Atlantic.   Henry (10.2.5) came to Canada for visits with George (10.2.4) and Lois so it is obvious that George and Lois were aware of Sophia and William's arrival.  (REB)   There is mention in my research that it is possible Sophia met George Frost through the mail.  It appears they may have exchanged letters before Sophia actually arrived in Minnesota.  (REB)  I suggest that it was Henry Blackwell, Sophia's brother. that knew George Frost and suggested they communicate.  I base this on the fact that it was Henry and Amanda that were the witnesses at their wedding.

George W. Frost and Sophia Blackwell

George W Frost and Sophia Blackwell
Van Loon Cemetery - Minnesota
Photo Courtesy of Kathryn Johnson

Photo 14

George W. Frost - Husband of Sophia Blackwell

Death Announcement of George W. Frost
Death Announcement of George W. Frost
Alexandria Post News,
Alexandria, Douglas County, Minnesota
Thursday, February 4, 1897, page 1, col. 3.

Death of Geo.W. Frost.
  (Reprint of Obituary)  (Actual Obituary)
The people of Alexandria learned with much regret on Monday morning of the death that morning of Geo. W. Frost. Mr. Frost was known to almost everyone in the village and had also a large acquaintance through the county, especially in Holmes City, which for years was his home. He was born about 1844 in Belmont, Waldo county, Maine. When he was four years of age his father moved to Omro, Winnebago county, Wis., where he grew to manhood. At the breaking out of the civil war he enlisted in the Third Wisconsin Infantry and after a year’s service was discharged on account of sickness. Six months later he joined the Fifth regiment of cavalry and served through to the close of the war, being one of the squad that captured Jefferson Davis.   The funeral occurred on Wednesday and was largely attended by his comrades of the G. A. R. of which he was formerly a member, and the local post furnished the casket for his burial. The services were conducted by the Rev. Mr. Wodward [sic], Free Methodist, of which church Mr. Frost had been a member. The burial was at Holmes City. Among those at the funeral was a brother from Windom, Minn. He left a wife, who is a sister of Mrs. Henry Blackwell, and two brothers.  Mr. Frost was a good man, a good citizen, earnest Christian and brave soldier. His record is ended and it is one for his friends to regard with pride.
Civil War Information
Our Thanks to Ron Mosocco
Civil War Information

Our Thanks to Ron Mosocco
Information from Ronald A, Mosocco advises that George Frost mustered into Company "B" 3rd Wisconsin on 4/21/1861 and was discharged for disability on 10/26/1861.  However, he re-joined after his recovery only 6 months later.  We find he rejoined a cavalry unit until the duration and as part of this cavalry,  he was of the group that assisted in the Capture of Jefferson Davis.  This would be the 1st Wisconsin.  More  

 Jefferson Davis
Jefferson Davis

Confirmation of Joining the 1st Wisconsin.

Good Article on the Capture of Jefferson Davis
For information on the Civil War - Click Here

Our Thanks to Tom Melton
Our Thanks to Tom Melton
A posting was placed on the web and a reply came from Tom Melton of Seymour, Indiana.  Tom reported that George W. Frost was drafted in CO. I of the 1st Wisconsin on Nov 11, 1863 and was discharged at Edgefield, TN. on July 19, 1865. (At wars end) His place of residence was listed as Omro.  This same George W. Frost was also with the 3rd Wisconsin Infantry for a short time but was discharged with a disability.  
The Capture of Jefferson Davis
The Capture of Jefferson Davis
Tom Melton also mentioned that the 4th Michigan Cavalry was often given most of the credit for the capture of Davis but the 1st Wisconsin was also there.  This is the regiment that George W. Frost was drafted into after his recovery and discharge from the 3rd Wisconsin.  (This is definitely the same George W. Frost - REB)  During this action, the Union Army had mixed signals and when the 1st Wisconsin ran across the 4th Michigan Troops they started to fire on them thinking it was the Rebel Soldiers.  I do not believe any injuries were reported. (friendly fire).
Additional Information
Additional Information
Confirming the content of an article taken from the official report of the Commanding Officer of the Union Army,  it seems that they tracked Davis and his men for some time.  It was believed they were growing in their numbers.  A number of reports came down but no sighting had occurred.  Then, word came that Jefferson Davis had crossed the river and was on the other side.  Fearful that he may make good his escape, the Union Officer sent a troop of men forward to lay in wait for them.  Another troop of men from the 1st Wisconsin were also in the area and also had set out to find Davis.  During the night, they ran across each other and for a short time  they opened fire on each other until one of the men recognized the uniforms.   I don't think anyone was hurt in the incident.  The next day, the troop that George W. Frost was with, had caught up to Jefferson Davis and took him and his men, prisoner.   It was reported that Davis was dressed as a woman but that has been denied by various reports.  It seems the South felt the North used this as a propaganda tool while the South maintained that Davis was in fact, wearing a type of coat that was worn by both men and women in those days.  The fact that he was trying to escort his wife at the time could imply he was making a permanent exodus from the area.  Comment  I rather doubt that a man of this nature would resort to such action. (dressing as a woman)  However, should I ever get into some detailed papers of my late ancestors actions and comments, I will post them here.  It would be interesting to read any comments George may  have had.   George died at age 53.   His coffin was supplied by the G.A.R. (Read Obit below)

1st Wisconsin....fact....
"This distinguished regiment is included as one of William F. Fox's (circa 1889)
Top 300 Union Fighting Regiments."


Obituary of Sophia Blackwell   Obituary of George W Frost
Sophia                  George
Provided by Kathryn Johnson
 Photo 15               Photo 16

Look at the Roster for the 1st Regiment of Cavalry Page 340.  This was the second stint in the Army for George.  When you get in, you will notice that their are three George W. Frost names.  Ours is the one in CO. I  (Cavalry)  Click Here

George W. Frost - Pvt.
George W. Frost enlisted in the Third Wisconsin Infantry at the start of the Civil War.  After a period of one year he was discharged after suffering a sickness.  Six months later he joined the Fifth Regiment of Calvary until the end of the war.  He was one of the Squad that captured Jefferson Davis.  This report is taken from his Obituary.  However, he is known to have been involved in the capture of Jefferson Davis and also shows up in the 1st Regiment of Calvary with  CO  I  Wisconsin.  Somehow, either an error was made in the obituary or another change was made in his Regiment.    I suspect a change in his military position.  It had had previously reported, he was drafted into the 1st Cavalry Division. 





John Blackwell
John Blackwell
3rd Born of George Blackwell Sr. 10.2 and Mary Barradell

John Blackwell   10.2.3   1832 - 1875
John Blackwell  10.2.3  1832 - 1875
12th Generation John Blackwell  10.2.3               Biography    Additional Comments    Death of John Blackwell    Obituary
b. 4   Jan 1832  Cheltenham, Gloucester, England
d. 24 May 1875 
(Lake Ripley) Litchfield, Meeker, Minnesota, USA.   Aged 43 Years - 4 Mos., - 26 Days
Married:  11 Jun 1862
Mary Jane McGannon                                             Information about Mary Jane McGannon
b.   8 Jul  1842  Vernon, Jennings, In.
d. 28 May 1929  Providence, Providence, R.I.         

Note:  The full name of Mary Jane McGannon is  .... Mary Jane Taylor Finley Henry Carney McGannon
          Read the Obituary of Mary's father, John McGannon - Click Here

The Children of John Blackwell 10.2.3 and Mary Jane McGannon
The Children of John Blackwell 10.2.3 and Mary Jane McGannon
13th Generation 10.2.3  Children of John Blackwell and Mary Jane McGannon Minnie Blackwell      (Wife of F.P. Olney) Addie Blackwell       (Also see VanLoon and Henry Blackwell pages with minor comments on Addie) Mary Blackwell        (See Downing Page for details on Mary Blackwell) George Blackwell John Blackwell Mattie Blackwell     (Died prior to 1875)

John Blackwell 10.2.3   1832 - 1875
John Blackwell 1832 - 1875
Photo by Mary Jane Blackwell
Photo 18

Note:  The time of John's death must have been terrible for Mary Jane as her father, John McGannon was also very ill. Note when they died.
          John died on May 24. while her father died the next day; May 25.   John was only 43.

Early Land Office - Litchfield
Click to Enlarge
Photo 17
John Blackwell was the Register of Deeds in early Litchfield.  This building would have been his 'Office'.

Information about John Blackwell 10.2.3
John Blackwell was also the first school teacher.  from

from Litchfield, MN

John Blackwell held many civic positions in Litchfieldfrom
He was listed as: Auditor                  - 1871-2-3-4
                        Registers of Deeds - 1867-8-9-70
                        Clerk of the Court   - 1867-8.9-70-71
                        Judge of Probate    - 1875 til his death in 1875
                        As indicated in the first link, he was also the first school teacher.

Additional Comments
Death of John Blackwell

Information about Mary Jane McGannon
Information about Mary Jane McGannon
Mary Jane Remarried 
More about Mary Jane Blackwell - McGannon          

Biography of John Blackwell
Information courtesy of Meeker County Historical Society.             
Jones and Baker
John Blackwell was born in Gloucestershire, England, January 4, 1832 and came to Meeker County April 15, 1857, and settled in Acton, where he was one of the pioneers.  He was a mason by trade, but found little to do at that calling in the new country, so worked on his farm in summer and taught school in the winter seasons, being the first to teach in Litchfield township.  After his marriage he went onto his farm to live, and while there was interruption by the news of the Indian outbreak.  On the eventful night of August 17, 1862, he organized a posse to go to the houses of Jones and Baker to assist the wounded, if any. and was the first to enter the Baker cabin, where with a steady hand he struck a light, a perilous proceeding under the circumstances, as he made himself a mark for any lurking foe.  It was he that found the little child at Jones' house and gave him into the hands of one of the men who accompanied him.  Some time after this he went to Anoka with his young wife and there remained until 1865, when he returned to his county and opened a store in the township of Ripley, now Litchfield.  In the fall of that year he was elected to the office of register of deeds and removed to Forest City.  Shortly after assuming the duties of that position, James M. Harvey, the clerk of the district court, died, and that office was also conferred upon Mr. Blackwell, and a short time after he was also made school examiner, thus holding three offices at one and the same time.  From this time on he was an occupant of some of the county offices until his death, which took place May 24, 1875, while he was judge of probate.  He left five children - Minnie, wife of F.P. Olney, of Litchfield; Mary J., Mrs Charles Downey, of Minneapolis; Addie, George, and John at home, and Mattie, deceased.  On the 7th day of January, 1881, Mrs. Blackwell was again married, this time to Frank Belfoy.  Frank Belfoy was a lawyer by profession, and a native of Prescott, Province of Ontario, Canada, born November 1, 1827.  He came to Forest City in 1868 and there established the pioneer journal of Meeker county, The News, which he edited in connection with his legal practice.  In 1869 he removed to Litchfield and in 1874 he sold the subscription books and good-will of THE NEWS to Daggett & Joubert, who consolidated with THE LEDGER, and Mr. Belfoy devoted his sole attention to his profession.  In 1876 Mr. Belfoy purchased an interest in the NEWS-LEDGER with Mr. Joubert, and assumed the greater share of the editorial labor, which he continued until July 16, 1881, when he was called to "that land elysian, whose portals we call death."  His widow is still a resident of the village of Litchfield.  By her last union there was born one child, Frank, living at home with his surviving parent.   Read more of this incident through the life of another ancestor.

"LETTER ABOUT JOHN BLACKWELL" (written in 1935)  Click Here

Additional Comments
Additional Comments
General Information  Additional Comments
John Blackwell 10.2.3 originally left England and arrived in Montreal, Canada with his younger brother, George Blackwell 10.2.4  In 1851 his father, George Blackwell Sr. 10.2 and young son Henry Blackwell 10.2.5 arrived in New York from England.  Henry remained in New York while his father went on to Canada to join is older sons.  It is understood that Henry left New York and arrived in Canada in 1854 and at that time they entered in an area of Ontario called the "Queensbush".  This was the place they purchased timber land.  However, plans were soon made to head to Minnesota.  In 1857 they did exactly that.  While in Montreal, John and George Jr. plastered a Cathedral.  Also, as young George Jr. was an assistant butler in England, he had became a Head Butler in Montreal.
Death of John Blackwell  ....
Death of John Blackwell   .....
John died of Rheumatism of the heart. 
He left five children - as follows
- Minnie, wife of F.P. Olney of Litchfield
- Mary Josephine Blackwell. (Mrs. Charles Downing of Minneapolis)
- Addie Blackwell
- George Blackwell
- John Blackwell Jr., still at home.

John Blackwell was the first school teacher in Meeker, County, Minnesota.
We know from land documents that he was buying land in Minnesota in 1857.  John was a mason by trade but found little work in his new home of Litchfield, Minnesota.  He bought a farm and tended to it during the summer and taught school in the winter.  He was very musical and was also fluent in French. He opened a Music Store.
Offices Held by John Blackwell
In his career, John Blackwell held many offices in the township and was considered an extremely honest and
respectable man.  He was one of the earliest settlers of Meeker County.

Auditors  1871-2-3-4 John Blackwell
Registers Of Deeds - His office was the building in
Photo 17   1867-8-9-70 John Blackwell
Clerks Of Court  1867-8.9-70-71 John Blackwell
Judge Of Probate  1875 John Blackwell, till he died.
He was the first school teacher in Litchfield.  The first school district was organized in 1861 and a school house was built. 
He was the Enumerator in the 1870 Census  (August)
See the Online List of County Officers for Meeker County.  Here


From information provided by the Meeker County Historical Society -
OLD SETTLER'S MEMBERSHIP   Must be before 1862 and later revised 1868
       NAME         BORN        PLACE        DATE            DIED             SETTLED
John Blackwell  England                  Jan 4 1832   Mary 24 1875   April 15 1857  

The First Settlers in the county acquired their lands under the preemption law whereby they purchased the land direct
form the government at $1.25 per acre.  The homestead law did not become effective until January 1, 1863
Obituary of John Blackwell
     After an illness of some weeks, John Blackwell of this village, died on Monday evening last of Rheumatism of the heart.  He died as the sun went down below the western horizon.  Though his illness had been severe and protracted, yet it was not generally understood that he was in immediate danger.  On Friday last, he rode out with Mr. A. T. Koerner, his brother-in-law, and visited Mr. John McGannon, (their father-in-law, since dead.)  As the interview between the two men concluded, Mr. Blackwell, said "Goodbye, father!  If we never meet again on Earth, may we meet in heaven."   The ride was too much for Mr. Blackwell in his enfeebled condition and from that time he grew worse until he died. 
     John Blackwell was born in England January 4th. 1832, and settled in Meeker County in 1857.  He was one of the first settlers in the county and one of the most popular men, with all classes, we ever met.  In 1866, he was chosen Register of Deeds, for Meeker County; in 1867, Clerk of the Court; was appointed County Supt. of schools about 1869 elected Auditor in 1870, and again in 1872.  In 1874, he was elected Judge of Probate, which office he held at the time of his death.
He discharged every duty with rare fidelity, and in every official transaction of his life, he was governed by principles of the strictest integrity.  He was in every sense that "noblest work of God, an hones man."  These sterling qualities, added to a genial disposition, kindly nature, and a courteous demeanor towards all with whom he came in contact, made him universally popular.
     In 1861 Mr. Blackwell and Miss Mary McGannon were united in matrimony.  The ceremony took place on the farm now owned by A. T. Koerner.  The fruits of their union are five children-three girls and two boys.  The oldest, a daughter about twelve years of age, and the youngest a boy between three and four years old.
     He was kind-hearted and generous to a fault, a firm friend, a loving husband, and indulgent father, an honest man!  There is compressed in these few words as grand an epitaph as ever was emblazoned upon marble.
     His death at the last was sudden.  During the afternoon he had seemed to be much better, was free from pain, and his friends began to feel that there was abundant hope of his ultimate recovery.  Mrs. Blackwell, late in the afternoon asked him if he did not desire some refreshment, and he replied laughingly, that he supposed that he ought to eat and drink."  She gave him some tea, which he drank.  Her attention was then called away from him for a moment by some of the children, when she heard a groan that drew her quickly to his side.  He had fallen back on this pillow, his head was thrown back and she saw, through she could hardly realize the fact, that her beloved husband was dying.  She raised him quickly and tenderly, and dispatched a messenger for assistance.  It was but a moment and Henry Chase was there, but ere he came the spirit of John Blackwell had left its tenement of clay and gone to God who gave it.  And just as the vital spark left the body, the last of rays of the setting sun glanced in through the open window, lit up the apartment for a moment with a golden glory, and then died out.  They came like and old friend to bid one he loved god-speed on a long journey, and it is pleasant to think that they lighted up the darkness of the Valley of Death, that they lighted the way for the unbound soul, till it stood in the full effulgence of that light that cometh from the throne of God.

When the Jones and Bakers were murdered in the Indian Massacre, John Blackwell went to the scene with his weapon and other members of the posy.  Read what he had found, other then the bodies of his friends and neighbours.  Click Here

About Meeker County and John Blackwell
Meeker County  -  Named for Bradley B. Meeker who was Associate Justice of the Minnesota Supreme Court, 1849-53.
                          Member of the territorial legislature, 1851  Member of the constitutional convention of 1857. 

Read the Review referring to John Blackwell - Early Settlers
Acton and Kingston

General Information - Letter
See the letter about John and George Jr. coming to Minnesota -
Click Here  As written years later by a descendant.
However, this letter is written with a little bit of inaccuracy.  See comment at the end of the letter for explanation.
About Mary Jane McGannon
About Mary Jane McGannon
John Blackwell married Mary Jane McGannon on 11 June 1862.  Mary Jane was born 8 July 1842 in Jennings, Indiana. 
John and Mary Jane moved to their farm shortly after their marriage.

Mary Jane's  Father was
John McGannon and her Mother was Mary Carney.  (photos
They were natives of Virginia and Kentucky, respectively.
It is very interesting to note that Mary Jane's husband, John Blackwell, died on the Monday, 24th of May in 1875. 
The next day on Tuesday, 25th of May of 1875, her father,
John McGannon, also passed away.  Both, in Litchfield, MN.
It must have been a terrible time for Mary Jane. Mary Jane latter remarried:
  Information on Mary Jane's second marriage

Second Marriage of Mary Jane McGannon
Second Marriage of Mary Jane McGannon
After John's death, Mary Jane remarried on 7 January 1881 to Mr. Frank Belfoy
Mr. Belfoy was a lawyer by profession and a native of Prescott, Ontario, Canada. 
He was born on 1 November 1827. 
He came to Forest City in 1868 and there established the pioneer journal of Meeker County called "The News". 
He edited this paper and also carried on his legal practice.
In 1869 he removed to Litchfield and in 1874 he sold the newspaper to Daggett & Joubert
He then dedicated himself to his legal practice.  He died on 16 July 1881. 
He and Mary Jane had one child;  Frank Belfoy Jr. who lived at home with his surviving parent. 
Mary Jane died in 1929.

Remarriage of Mary Jane McGannon Blackwell
Mary Jame Blackwell nee McGannon
b.   8 Jul  1842  Vernon, Jennings, In.
d. 28 May 1929  Providence, Providence, R.I.
Married:  7 Jan 1881
Frank Belfoy
b.   1 Nov 1827
d. 16 July 1881

Children of Mary Jane (McGannon) Blackwell and Frank Belfoy
Frank Belfoy Jr.
b. Abt Jan 1882
d. unknown


1860 Census of Meeker Co.  (Blackwell Portion)
1860 Census of Meeker County (portion)

Fam #   Name                     Age   Sex  Occupation POB      Tnshp
164     Blackwell, George        59    m    farmer     England     Act        10.2.4
164     Blackwell, Henry          20    m    farmer     England     Act        10.2
186     Blackwell, J                 28    m    mason     England     Act        10.2.3          This is John Blackwell 10.2.3

View the entire 1860 Census of Meeker County -
View the 1860 Census



George Blackwell


George Blackwell
George Blackwell
4th Born and George Blackwell Sr. 10.2 and Mary Barradell


George Blackwell
1834 - 1916
Photo 19

George (Jr) married Lois Clarinda Twichell

George Blackwell   10.2.4  1834 - 1916
George Blackwell
12th Generation  George Blackwell   10.2.4        History    Death of George
b. 15 Oct 1834  Cheltenham, Gloucester, England.
d.   9 Dec 1916  Kirkella, Manitoba, Canada.
George died at Kirkella, Manitoba exactly at noon on Saturday, December 9th., 1916. 
George was aged 82 years, 1 month, 24 days.  He was laid to rest in Brandon Cemetery on Monday, December 11th., 1916
The funeral services were held in their home by Rev. Dyer.  Gravesite Service in Brandon by Rev. Lowrey.

Married:  6 May 1863  Anoka, Minnesota, USA.  
Lois Clarinda Twichell
b.   8 Sep 1841 Hudson, Allegany County, NY.   
(IGI) and her own memoirs (LCB)
d. 27 Nov 1925 Brandon, Manitoba, Canada

Lois died in Brandon, Manitoba on Friday, November 27th., 1925.   Aged 84 years, 2 months, 19 days. 
She was laid to rest beside her husband on Sunday, November 29th., 1925. 
Lois was the daughter or Royal Twichell
and Ruth Field
After the death of Ruth Field, Royal married Almena Mary Nourse who was really the only mother that Lois knew. 
Almena was with Royal to the end of his days in Nebraska.

The Children of George Blackwell 10.2.4 and Lois Clarinda Twichell
The Children of George Blackwell 10.2.4 and Lois Clarinda Twichell
View Children  of George Blackwell and Lois Clarinda Twichell  
George H. Blackwell  (Born in Minnesota)  
Mary Blackwell   Alvin Blackwell  
Seraph Blackwell   Ruth Blackwell   (b. 11 Nov 1871  d. 24 Sep 1872 "Infant Death")  
Milton Blackwell  
Emily Blackwell  
John Blackwell  
Laura Blackwell
Norma Blackwell
Charles Blackwell

From the Memoirs of Lois Twichell:
From the Memoirs of Lois Twichell:
Information about the history of George Blackwell (10.2) and what he did for work in England and upon his arrival into Canada.
On the 12th of July there was an Orange celebration and for that day Wingham was a lively place. My husband assisted as a table waiter that day for the dinner at the new hotel where hundreds went for dinner and help was scarce. My husband was handy at this job, having been assistant butler in England and head butler in Montreal for a year before he joined his brother (John) in learning the plastering trade. (From the Memoirs of LCB)

History and Information
George Blackwell Jr. was born in Cheltenham, Gloucester, England on 15 October 1834.  He was the second son and the fourth born.  George Jr. was an assistant butler in England.  With his elder brother John (10.2.3) he departed for North America in 1850.  This explains why they are not in the 1851 Census of England.  We believe they departed from Liverpool, England but we do know they arrived in Montreal in 1849.  We know that they spent time in Montreal.  It is reported in his memoirs that he spend a year in Montreal and held the position of Head Butler.  We do not know for what family.  He also was a plasterer (Mason) as was John.  A number of old Churches in Montreal were done by the brothers.  They still stand today as a testimonial to their workmanship and labours.   
George left Canada in 1854 with his brothers John (10.2.3), and his Father, George Sr. (10.2) (arriving in 1851 via New York) and younger brother Henry,(10.2.5) who came from England with their father, but remained to work in New York until coming to Canada in 1854.  The all left together for the prairie lands of Minnesota. They all remained in Minnesota, with the exception of George (10.2.4) who returned to Canada in 1864 with his wife, Lois Twichell.  They went to Simcoe, then Wingham (1865-1899) and then to Manitoba. (deemed Saskatchewan after 1905)

More Details
In 1857 George Sr. and his three  sons, John , George Jr. and Henry are found in Minnesota buying land.  George Sr. and Henry in Holmes City, Minnesota and John and George in Meeker County.   A report from Minnesota indicates that the population of Minnesota grew from 40,000 to 150,000 people between 1853 and 1857.  Soon, depression hit the state as panic brought about rising prices after the states constitution was ratified.  Banks went broke and businesses failed.  It was a difficult time for Minnesota.  
While in the United States, George Jr. met Lois Twichell in Anoka, Minnesota and on 6 May 1863 they married.   George Jr. was a loyal Englishman (LCB).  He wanted to return to Canada where he had interests and friends.  Together, they planned their journey.  George Jr. went ahead to find a suitable place but had considerable difficulty in doing so.  Eventually, Lois rejoined him.  By this time, their first born (George was an infant and it was a difficult journey for Lois.

 The Flag of the United Kingdom.  This flag also flew in Canada at the time of George and Lois and well after the 2nd World War. 
           Canada was a colony of Britain at the time.

  This is the Flag of England with London as it's Capital. 

We learned that George Jr. had sold his portion of the land for $1000.00 but payments could not be met by the new owner.  However, George did not put him off the land but waited for payments to be made.  It continued to be owed to George Jr. for many years.  I never did determine if it got paid or not.  It certainly meant extra hardship for them.   Often they had no food or heat to ward off the cold winter months in Canada.  However, they survived and went on to raise a large family.

George Blackwell 10.2.4 of 1834 was a tough, religious man that fought hardship after hardship for the survival and security of his family.  He was very much a look-a-like for his brother Henry  10.2.5.   However, our photos are dated such that we can not do a comparison.  The story is told by Lois how the children used to confuse Henry with their father until they got close to him to notice the minor differences.  This incident occurred upon a visit from Henry to the Canadian home of his brother George and sister-in-law, Lois.

Lois Twichell and George Blackwell  - photo in 1908
Mr. and Mrs. George Blackwell  1908
Photo 20

Comment from the Memoirs of Lois Twichell
Comment from the Memoirs of Lois Twichell - "The Death of George Blackwell Jr. (10.2.4)"
"The night of December 6th, he came downstairs to sit awhile as he could not sleep on account of his nerves. I came down and stayed with him till he wanted to return to bed. In the evening before he called us all together and told us that he did not think he would be long with us and gave us all words of advice and then we all prayed together. Then we retired.  He was to weak to get up the next morning but took some nourishment at noon. At 3 P.M. he sent Charlie to Kirkella for some medicine from Dr. Goodwin who had been to see him the day before, then he dropped into a sleep which I hoped would do some good.  Charlie wanted to speak to him again but I told him not to waken him as he would probably waken when Charlie returned. But he did not. He slept on and towards morning he made a noise as he sometimes did when he had a nightmare and I always spoke to him and woke him, but this time I couldn’t waken him. Charlie phoned Dr. Goodwin at Elkhorn and told us he feared it was a stroke. However, he wanted him to come out and do what he could. He came but saw the end was not far off.  My husband continued unconscious the rest of the night ,and the next day, and telegrams were sent off to George, Alvin, Ernest and Seraph and had arrived by 9 o’clock on Saturday morning. Norma was unable to come. He lingered till noon and then he opened his eyes and looked at us but we did not know whether he recognized us. Then his breath grew fainter and soon it was all over. On Saturday 9th 1916, we were left alone.

The next day the Rev. Dyer held a funeral service for him in the house and Monday morning, George, Alvin, Ernest, Charlie, Seraph and Merle accompanied their father’s remains to Brandon. At the station they were met by Norma and her husband some of the Brethren there.  The casket was opened and they took their last look on the face of their dear father and then he was taken to the Brandon Cemetery and prayers were said by the Rev. Lowrey as he was laid to rest. Mary and I did not go to Brandon but remained in the lonely home from which our loved one had gone never to return again. Poor Mary. Here heart was sore indeed. Only a little over a year since her husband had passed away so suddenly and now her beloved father. They were very dear to each other and what a comfort she was to me."

A look at a Map of Minnesota as it would have been like during this time. Click Here

Lois Clarinda Twichell - Blackwell -   Summary of her life    Memoirs of Lois Twichell

(Back Row) John-Norma-George-Emily-Laura-Alvin .....    (Mid Row) Mary-George Sr-Lois-Milton ......                   (Front Row) Charles-Seraph
Blackwell Family 1908
Click to enlarge
Back Row: Left to Right
John - Norma - Milton - Emily (Photo) - Laura - Alvin
Center Row - Left to Right
Mary - George 10.2.4 - Lois - George Henry
Front Row - Left to Right
Charles - Seraph
Photo 21

Comment from the Memoirs of Lois Twichell - The Family Photo shown above
"In August of 1908 we had a family reunion. The girls, Seraph and Laura who were teaching in Victoria, came home; also Mary and Milton came and once more we were all under one roof. Our Emily had left her earthly home some years before and had gone to join her baby sister.  They both rest in Wingham Cemetery but all the other children were gathered together in our prairie home. Nine of the children, twelve grandchildren, and also Will Kennedy, Emily’s widower husband.  Milton’s wife was not there nor Mary’s husband. We had a wonderful time.  My husband and I have been married 45 years in the proceeding May.  The family all went to Fleming and had a family group picture taken which turned out very good."

Details of Photo 17
The elder gentleman seated in the center is George Blackwell Jr. 10.2.4 b. 1834.  His wife, Lois Twichell is seated beside him.  This photo was taken in Fleming, Saskatchewan in 1908.  When they moved here it was not Saskatchewan at the time as it would not become a province until 1905. 

Barradell researchers will be pleased to note that the elder gentleman in the picture is the second of four sons of Mary Barradell.  b. 1797  d. 1864  Cheltenham, England.  Mary married George Blackwell 10.2 in Cowley, Gloucester, England in 1824.  Mary Barradell was the Mother of all of our Blackwell Family who came to America and Canada. 

Twichell / Twitchell  - Lois's father was Royal Twichell Her Grandfather was Lemuel Twichell  The Family Photo above is the home that was the site of Dwight Twichell's death on 4 Nov 1906.  He is buried in this hamlet of Fleming, Saskatchewan, Canada.  It is located on No.1 Highway east of Regina on the way to Winnipeg.  Fleming is the second last community before the Manitoba boarder. 

Let Lois help you today (well, sort of)
If you ever have a friend or family member with a serious burn and no medical assistance is near,  read below.  In the year 1871 Lois burned her self badly when working in the kitchen about 5AM in the morning.  She tried a number of things to relieve the pain and, to a degree, they worked.  However, it was still quite painful and she had a days work ahead of her.  They kept a Doctor Book that was written by a Dr. Gunn.  There was a recipe in it that worked wonders for Lois.  She leaves us that recipe in her memoirs;  here it is.
  (for information only)

**1 tablespoon of sweet oil put on the stove.
Half the amount of beeswax melted into it. ( 1/2 tablespoon )
Then, take off the stove and as it cools, stir in a teaspoon of spirits of turpentine.
Then, spread on a thin cloth and lay on the burn. **

Quote:  "This was done and immediately the pain left me like a wave and I went to bed at 8 o'clock to sleep for 3 hours.
The relief was quick and wonderful"

** Disclaimer: I have shown this information for your interest. 
Should you decide to use or suggest this remedy, you will be doing so at your own risk.  The information is provided for your interest only.
                                                                                                                                     ...............R. E. Blackwell


 1871 Ontario Census Information

     Name:              George Blackwell     
Age:                 36                    
    Born:                England                
          Religion:           Wesleyan Methodist     
    Origin:              English                 
    Occupation:       Plaster                  
      District:             Huron North (26)     
     Sub.District:       Turnberry (K)         
          Division:           2 Microfilm: C-9933      
         Reference:        RG31-Stats Canada    




Henry Blackwell


Henry Blackwell
Henry Blackwell
5th Born of George Blackwell Sr. 10.2 and Mary Barradell


 Henry Blackwell   
abt 1868
Photo 22

Henry B. Blackwell   10.2.5  1839 - 1903       
Henry Blackwell 10.2.5                                                                               
The Larkey Lineage through Henry Blackwell
12th Generation  
Henry B. Blackwell   10.2.5
b.  25 Aug 1839  Cheltenham, Gloucester, England.
 (Leckhampton Parish, Leckhampton, Gloucester, Eng.)
d.  27 Jan 1903  Holmes City, Minnesota       
Henry was buried in the VanLoon Cemetery, Homes City, MN.
See Comments about his death
Married:  29 Mar 1860  in Meeker Co., Minnesota.
Amanda VanLoon
b.  13 Aug 1841  Plymouth, Pennsylvania.
d.  13 Apr 1921  Holmes City, Minnesota
(In the home of her son, Stephen)     CertID#1921-MN-003434
     She is the daughter of
 Minor VanLoon and Charity Davenport
Amanda was buried in the VanLoon Cemetery, Holmes City, MN

The Children of Henry Blackwell 10.2.5 and Amanda VanLoon
The Children of Henry Blackwell 10.2.5 and Amanda VanLoon
13th Generation  Children of Henry Blackwell (10.2.5) and Amanda Van Loon   Henry Blackwell and Amanda Van Loon Mary Janette Blackwell    (Nickname was Nettie)   
Read about Mary Janette's Father-in-Law  Indian Wars Frances Blackwell William Minor Blackwell John Blackwell                                                                                                       View Children Emma Blackwell     (Mrs. John Anderson) Stephen A. Blackwell   


Interview with Henry Blackwell  - Compendium of Northern Minnesota. IMPORTANT READING
What George Blackwell Sr. and young son Henry Blackwell 10.2.5 saw when they arrived in New York. NY Photo Album (67a)

The Actual Signature of Henry Blackwell
with his Title of County Surveyor in Douglas Co.

Holmes City, MN  1890s
Holmes City 1890s
Photo 23a

Amanda, Henry, Emma, William, Stephen Blackwell (L to R)
Henry Blackwell Family
Amanda, Henry, Emma, William, Stephen
Photo was taken at the Henry Blackwell Home.

As young Stephen (right) was born about 1877,  I suggest the photo was taken about 1887.
Note the surveyor equipment in the photo.
Left to Right
Click to enlarge
Photo 23

Henry is shown in the 1851 Census as 11 and born in Leckhampton, Gloucester, England.

Parish of Leckhampton - Believed to be the place Henry Blackwell was Christened   
 Parish of Leckhampton
 Photo 24            Photo 25

Henry Blackwell swore his allegiance to the United States and denounced his status with Great Britain.
The document was completed on October 5th, 1870 in the Seventh Judicial District - County of Douglas

The Historical Facts state that...
The first surveyed roads in Hudson Township were laid out by Henry Blackwell   .... from the History of Hudson Township Henry Blackwell was the first surveyor of the western part of Douglas County starting in 1862.  He drew  up many of the maps that are recorded in the township records"     .... from Luther Myhr, Clerk  Holmes City Township Henry Blackwell - first of three Judges appointed by the board of County Commissioners - Oct 4, 1866"  
                                                                             ....from election of Judges - Board of County Commissioners
Surveyor Information
Henry Blackwell was the first Surveyor for Douglas County and served two terms according to all Minnesota History facts.  A prepared document signed by all the Surveyors is in my possession containing the actual signatures, including that of Henry Blackwell.   It does not report on the Surveyor of 1862 to 1865, which we know was Henry Blackwell's first appointment.  He then repeated the position from 1869 - 1870 and again from 1883 - 1888.  The counties earliest maps are drawn by Henry Blackwell and are on record in the Douglas County Township Records Office.
I have included the list of surveyors below until such time as the copy I have is scanned.

Douglas County Surveyors
Upon receiving considerable genealogy information from the Douglas County Genealogy Society located in Alexandria, Minnesota.  I found a little extra item that was stuffed into the envelope.  It was a copy of a list of all the names of the County Surveyors, the years they served the office and their actual signatures.  I will scan this to be entered on this page at a latter date, but for now, I have taken the liberty of copying it out.  Of course, the original signatures are not shown in my copy.

                    Douglas County Surveyors

Henry Blackwell         1862 - 1865       
 T.W. Moore                 1866 - 1868     
  Henry  Blackwell        1869 - 1870
   Henry Blackwell          1883 - 1888
    L.W. Rima                     1871 - 1874
     Chas. Thompson         1875 - 1878
      John Abercrombie        1879 - 1882
       John Abercrombie        1889 - 1905
        John Abercrombie        1911 - 1919
         Arthur E. Morgan          1905 - 1907
          E.R. Lausted                  1907 - 1910  
           Harry S. Todd                 1919 - 1921  
            Paul R. Johnson              1923 - 1931  
             Axel W. Wester               1931 - 1951  
              Harold S. Hall                 1951 - 1963  
               Richard D. Howe              1963 - 1990  
                Rodney F. Eldevik            1990 - 1994  
                 Anthony Kerick                 1994 -          

The original document carries the signatures of each of these men.


Note: Land Title Document

Minnesota Land Document signed by Henry Blackwell
Click to Enlarge
Difficult to Read
Photo 26

                A portion of the Minnesota State Census - County of Douglas Township of Holmes City
                Ln #4    Blackwell Family    abt 1864

            NAME              AGE        SEX     COLOR        PARENT FOREIGN BORN
        Blackwell, H        45        M      WHITE    FATHER-YES    MOTHER-YES
      Amanda             45        F      WHITE     FATHER-NO     MOTHER-NO
    William              20        M      WHITE     FATHER-YES    MOTHER-NO
  Emma               10         F      WHITE      FATHER-YES    MOTHER-NO
Steven                7         M      WHITE      FATHER-YES    MOTHER-NO

Reference to position of Henry Blackwell in 1866
When the board of county commissioners held its first meeting on 15 June 1866, it was decided that all of Douglas County not included in Osakis Township should be known as Alexandria, or No. 2 Township. The commissioners appointed the first officers as follows:
T.W. Sprague - assessor; George Cowing and N.B. Johnson - justices; John Johnson and Henry Blackwell - constables;
J. Mont Smyth - clerk; H.S. Rutherford - treasurer. The present area of Alexandria Township includes only congressional
Township128 Range 37.

To read the entire contents, Click Here

For more detailed information on Henry and other members of the family - Click Here


Henry Blackwell
1839 - 1903

Photo by Ken Blackwell
Photo 27

Obituary of William Minor Blackwell - Newspaper Article (1)
From the Obituary of William Minor Blackwell
Park Region Echo - 20 may 1943 Issue.
"Henry Blackwell came to America from Gloucester, England.  He filed on a homestead in the Town of Moe, known as the Brandon Farm in the fall of 1861 but when the Indians broke out in August of 1862, he escaped with his family and a neighbour woman and daughter to St. Cloud, meeting the girls husband there.  This family decided never to return.  Mr. Blackwell returned however, got the rights to settle on the place his neighbours had left and proved up a homestead now known as the Blackelin Farm."  (John Blackelin lived there at the time of Henry's death)

Obituary of Henry Blackwell - Newspaper Article (2)
OBITUARY - Henry Blackwell - 1839 - 1903  Alexandria Post News  Jan 29, 1903
"Henry Blackwell died early Tuesday morning from the effect of a stroke of Paralysis, complicated with Bright's disease.  Henry was born in Cheltenham, England, August 25, 1839, therefore he was in his sixty-fourth year of age. In 1851, with his father, he came to New York State where he remained for some time.  He went to Canada in 1853 where he , with his father and brothers, took up a large tract of timberland .   In 1862 he came to Douglas County and took a homestead at Pocket Lake in Holmes City Township, near which he has since lived.  In 1860 Mr. Blackwell married Amanda Van Loon, daughter of
 Minor VanLoon, another pioneer who had come to that section at an earlier date.  Together, they endured all the hardships and privations of a new country, made much harder by the Indian outbreak of 1862.  They went to Sauk Centre for a time that summer, but returning spent the winter on the old Pye place.  They returned to their homes in the spring of 1863.  Their nearest neighbour was at Alexandria, then a mere trading post and a stockade for the soldiers.

The deceased was one of the best known of the old settlers of the country.  He was employed by the government  to survey several of the southern townships in the county.  He was for years, county surveyor and his work stands as a monument to his memory.  A widow, three sons and one daughter survive him.    The sons are Stephen who lived at home and William who has a good farm near  that of his father.  The daughter, Mrs. John Anderson, also lived near her parents.  The deceased had been in ill health for some time.  He had suffered a stroke of paralysis and was suffering from Bright's disease.  He came to the Hensel Hospital Saturday and lingered until Tuesday morning. The remains were taken home and laid at rest in the home cemetery at Pocket Lake.  (VanLoon Cemetery)   The funeral occurred today from the home.  The Rev. W.H. Medlar of this village, officiating.

The Will of Henry Blackwell (3)
March 26, 1903 - Alexandria Post News   ...
The Will of Henry Blackwell was disallowed.  The Will left the bulk of the property to the deceased's son, Stephen.  Mrs. Blackwell, the widow, protested and produced evidence to show the deceased was not competent to make a Will at the time the instrument was drawn.  Judge Seaton disallowed the Will and appointed William Blackwell, another son, administrator.

Taken from the Compendium of History of Northern Minnesota - See Here for full content.
"Our subject (Henry Blackwell) joined his father and brothers in Canada in 1854, and together they went north into the unbroken forest called the "Queensbush" and jointly took up four hundred and fifty acres of hard wood timber land.  This they sold some years later to good advantage, and then sought Minnesota as a cure for the "prairie fever".  After reaching Meeker County in that state, the sons, John and George, each secured a homestead, and the father and our subject went to Douglas County.  In 1862 Henry Blackwell took a claim of one hundred and sixty acres on what is now section 3. of Holmes City township, five years before the township was surveyed.  This land he afterward sold and then bought the northeast quarter of Section 25, in the same township, which is his present home farm."

Amanda VanLoon
Wife of Henry Blackwell 10.2.5

Amanda VanLoon abt. 1890
Amanda VanLoon about 1880
Photo 28

View Amanda's Obituary    View the VanLoon Pages

Amanda VanLoon Blackwell - In her garden
Amanda VanLoon Blackwell
In her garden at home
Photo 29

Amanda (VanLoon) Blackwell  about 1921
As she was with her son Stephen in the 1920 Holmes City Census
it is likely this photo was taken at the home of Stephen A Blackwell
Photo 30

Adeline Blackwell & Amanda (VanLoon) Blackwell
Adeline ( and Amanda Blackwell
Adeline is the daughter of William Minor Blackwell
She is the Granddaughter of Amanda (VanLoon) Blackwell
Photo 31

Photos courtesy of Marilee (Cohoes) Larkey


Amanda VanLoon Obituary
Newspaper Article
OBITUARY  Park Region Echo April 22, 1921
Amanda Van Loon - Blackwell  1841 - 1921  


""Mrs. Amanda Blackwell, nee Van Loon, was born in Plymouth, Pennsylvania, August 13, 1841.  She moved with her folks to Illinois when she was twelve years old and from Illinois she journeyed to Meeker County, Minnesota by Ox team after spending four years in Illinois.  It was in 1857 they came to Meeker Co.  ""In 1860 she was married to Henry Blackwell in the house where two years later, the first blood was shed in the terrible Indian massacre of 1862.  She was well acquainted with the Jones, Bakers and Websters  who were the first victims of the massacre in August 1862".  They arrived at Holmes City, Douglas County in June before the outbreak.  On the 25th of June that year, word reached them of the Indian outbreak and they left that night for Sauk Centre.  They stopped the first day at Alexandria and went on to Sauk Centre the following night.  A few days later, they returned to Alexandria accompanied by a detachment of Soldiers. A fort was constructed here and the Blackwell's remained under the protection of this for two years, after which they returned to their homestead west of Holmes City on Blackwell Lake were they experienced the  hardships of frontier life, living by hunting, fishing and trapping.  All provisions were hauled from St. Cloud""

""In 1883, they moved to a farm on the south shore of Pocket Lake where she lived until the death of her husband in 1903 (Henry Blackwell).  Two years later, she went to live with her son, Stephen.""(S.A.)  .""She died April 13th, 1921 after an illness of only a few days.  She leaves to mourn her death two sons and a daughter. S.A.Blackwell, Emma and William. 20 grandchildren, 20 great-grandchildren and one sister, Mrs. F.T. Geer of Alexandria, two brothers, L.J. Van Loon of Mt. Vernon, Washington, and Charles Van Loon of Holmes City.""

""The funeral was held on Friday, April 15th from the home of her son, Stephen."" 
"" Internment being in VanLoon Cemetery.""  -  The Rev. Bergstrom officiated.
Pallbearers - C.A.Weson  -  J.O.Brandon  -  C.O.Skoglund  -  W.R.Guiles  -  F.J.Lauerman

Mrs. Blackwell, like all the early pioneers, was a most hospitable woman and all the old timers were always assured of a warm welcome at her home.  Those who knew here best will miss her the most.   She lived to be almost 80 years old, a long and useful life.  With her passing, another of the splendid old pioneer women is laid to her rest.

Amanda Van Loon- Blackwell
1841 - 1921   
Photo by Ken Blackwell
Photo 32

Newspaper Article

Park Region Echo - April 22, 1921
""They were united in Marriage on March 29th, 1860. The had a total of six children of which 3 were still living at the time of Amanda's death.""
""They are  William Blackwell Sr.  - Stephen Blackwell  - Emma Anderson - Blackwell

""A niece,
Mrs. Addy (Addie) McColley of Providence, RI. was also  present at the funeral"  
Note:  This is the daughter of John Blackwell of 1832  10.2.3...

""There was a grandmother, Mrs. Ruth Cohoes of Zimmerman, Minn. and Mrs. Clara Drum ( of Minneapolis that were also present at the funeral.""

Park Region Echo - April 20, 1921
Page 6  Col 1

Mrs. Amanda Blackwell Dies
Mrs. Amanda Blackwell (born VanLoon), one of the early pioneers of this locality, died at her home with Mr. and Mrs. Steven Blackwell Wednesday last week, April 13th, at the age of seventy-nine years and eight months.  Mrs. Blackwell was born in Pennsylvania August 13th, 1841.  She was united in marriage with Mr. Henry Blackwell March 29th, 1860.  The couple arrived in this community from Meeker County after the Indian massacre at the place in June, 1862, and took up a homestead at the place where John Backelin now lives.  Here the family lived for many years.  Six children were born into the family.  Three of these are deceases, and three are still living.  The closest relatives that survive Mrs. Blackwell are Wm. Blackwell Sr., Steven Blackwell and Mrs. Emma Anderson.  Then there are twenty grandchildren and twenty great-grandchildren, one sister, Mrs. F.P. Geer of Alexandria, and two brothers, T.J. and Charles Van Loon.  A niece, Mrs. Addy McColley of Providence, R.I., a grand daughter, Mrs. Ruth Cohoes of Zimmerman, Minn. and Mrs. Clara Drum of Minneapolis were also present at the funeral.  The interment took place last Friday, April 15th, at the Van Loon cemetery.  A very large crowd of people attended the funeral, and the floral offering was rich and beautiful.  ...............



Blackwell Information

Click Here
VanLoon Information

See what George Sr. and Henry saw when they entered New York Harbour in 1851 -
New York Photo Album


Holmes City in the 1890s
Early Holmes City Minnesota  1890s Photo
Click to Enlarge
Photo 33

First Map of Holmes City Township Believed drawn by Henry Blackwell
Click to Enlarge
Photo 34

For an extremely large map of Holmes City Township - Click Here
It is a very clear image and viewing is excellent.

For more photos - Minor Van Loon page. -
Click Here





James W. Blackwell

James W. Blackwell

James W Blackwell
6th Son (adopted) by George Blackwell Sr. 10.2 and Mary Barradell


Lulu Hill - Emma Hill - James Tainter Seely - James William Blackwell
Photo Courtesy of Tienne Linden

Left to Right
Photo 35a

James W. Blackwell  10.2.6  1845 - 1917
James W. Blackwell 10.2.6  1845 - 1917
12th Generation  James W. Blackwell  10.2.6                                                Information from IGI
b. 1845   Charleton Kings, Gloucester, England. (Census 1851)  (adopted)
d. 1917   Puyallup, Washington, USA. (Pierce)  (LDS) ( LCB)  Referred to as Bill in the Twichell Memoirs.
The birth date of William is taken from the 1851 Census.  He is shown as a 'Scholar" (in school) and age 6 in 1851.
Married:  29 Mar 1876  Alexandria, Minnesota.
Emma V. Hill 
(Previously married to Stephen VanLoon)
The Children of James W Blackwell 10.2.6 and Emma Hill   Children of James W Blackwell and Emma V. Hill
The Children of James W Blackwell 10.2.6 and Emma Hill
13th Generation 
We know that at least two children came from this marriage  Lewis S. Blackwell  
  View Details  Daughter

        1880 Census      1880 Census shows the following information for the James W. Blackwell Family
         Name                   Relation    Marital Status    Gender    Race    Age    Birthplace    Occupation    Father's POB    Mother's POB
James W. Blackwell     Self          Married           Male    White    33      England      Carpenter        England           England
Emma V. Blackwell      Wife         Married          Female  White    25         IL        Housekeeping        KY                  PA
Lewis S. Blackwell        Son          Single             Male    White     3          MN                               England               IL

Census Place:  Alexandria, Douglas, Minnesota
     View the 1910 Federal Census of Washington State

St. Martins of Charlton
St. Martins of Charleton
Photo 35

Note: Emma V. Hill was previously married to Stephen VanLoon.   She was the Daughter of Lewis Hill and Ann Wray Hill   (photo 35b below)
Witnesses were F.M. Wells and Henry Blackwell (10.2.5)   Married by Wm. M. Wells

Newspaper Announcement
Newspaper Announcement
The Alexandria Post, Alexandria, Douglas County, Minnesota
Friday, March 31, 1876, page 4, col. 2.
BLACKWELL—VANLOON—In Alexandria, Minn., March 29th by the Rev. Wm. M. Wells, Mr. J. W. Blackwell and Mrs. Emma V. Vanloon. All of Douglas Co.
More on James W. Blackwell
More on James W Blackwell
A document written by John Blackwell (10.2.3) confirms the name, and date of arrival of James W. Blackwell into the United States. 
This document is a copy of the original text.  John Blackwell wrote the copy in long hand.

State of Minnesota District Court 
County of Meeker  4th Judicial District
I, James W. Blackwell do hereby, upon my oath, declare that I first arrived in the United States, on or about the 25 day of July in the year A.D. 1869, and that I have, ever since that time, continued to reside in the United States, and that it is bona fide my intention to become a Citizen of the United States, and to renounce forever all allegiance and fidelity which I in any wise or to any foreign Prince, Protectorate, State or Sovereignty, and particularly all allegiance which I owe to the Queen of England and whom I have heretofore free a subject.
Subscribed and sworn to before me,
this 7th day of Aug. A.D. 1869.

  James W. Blackwell

John Blackwell
Clerk of said Court
State of Minnesota,  District Court 4th
County of Meeker,  Judicial District.
I hereby Certify that the foregoing is a true copy of the original declaration of James W. Blackwell, this day filed in my office.  The testimony thereof, I have hereunto set my hand and affixed the seal of said court at _______ City in the County of aforesaid this 7th day of Aug. A.D. 1869.
John Blackwell
                         Clerk of said Court

Document:  A second document signed by James W. Blackwell
State of Minnesota
County of Meeker.
I, James W. Blackwell solemnly swear that I will support the constitution of the United States, and the Constitution of the State of Minnesota. 
So help me God.
                        J. W. Blackwell

Subscribed and sworn to before me this 7th day of August 1869.

 John Blackwell
                       Clerk of said Court

We found this information in a Census for Alexandria, MN.

Emma V. VanLoon
b. 1855  Illinois  (Actual Date is 23 July 1854)
d. Unknown

Emma V. Hill had a sister by the name of Lulu Hill.
Lulu married James Tainter Seely from Menomonie, WI.
They are shown in Photo 35a above.

Lewis Hill and Ann Wray Hill
Lewis Hill and Ann Wray Hill - Parents of Emma V Hill.
Photo courtesy of Tienne Linden
Photo 35b

Hill Information
Hill Information
Lewis Hill
b.  2 Oct 1827  KY
d. 11 Apr 1909
Married:  Date Unknown
Ann Wray Hill
b. 31 Jul 1835  PA
d. 20 Nov 1919
Children of Lewis Hill and Ann Wray Hill
Children of Lewis Hill and Ann Wray Hill
Emma V. Hill
1) Married: 
Stephen VanLoon 
 9 Oct 1872  Holmes City, MN 
d. 29 Nov 1873

Steven drowned in Pocket Lake.  They had only been married for about 13 months.

2) Married: 29 Mar 1846  Alexandria, MN.
James W. Blackwell  

Lulu Hill  (Sister to Emma)
b.  Unknown
d.  Unknown
Married:  Date Unknown
James Tainter Seely
b.  Unknown
d.  Unknown

James was only 6 years of age when the English 1851 Census was taken.  His older brothers, John and George left for Canada in 1849.  In 1851, George Sr., his father, and other brother Henry, went to New York.  We have a good idea when he arrived in the US due to the documents listed above.  We also believe that his sister, Sophia came with him.  The elder sister, Elizabeth, died in 1865 in England and Mary Barradell, the mother, died in England in 1864 and is buried in Shurdington, Cheltenham, England.

Comment from the Memoirs of Lois Twichell - The Death of William Blackwell (10.2.6)
"Will Blackwell, my husband’s adopted brother, died a few months after at Puyallup, Washington."
This indicates William died around May of 1917.
William was definitely considered a member of the family and was spoken of fondly by Lois in her memoirs as she comments about her husband George Jr. as looking forward to seeing him and Sophia on a visit to Minnesota in 1877.   Their mother, Mary Barradell had passed away in the fall of 1864 .  The eldest child, Elizabeth, died shortly after her mother.  That left Sophia and James William alone in England.   Minnesota records show that in the year 1873, George Blackwell Sr. (10.2) purchased land in Douglas County and just 10 days later a James W. Blackwell purchased property directly beside him.   The documentation for both transactions were signed in the Litchfield Office.
(John Blackwell 10.2.3 was the Registrar of Deeds at that time)

We are in need of information on this line of the Blackwells
If anyone has information, please contact me

Special Thanks to Kathryn Johnson for a world of information.  "Contributor to the Blackwell Genealogy Website"
Meeker County Historical Society.
Memoirs of Lois Clarinda Blackwell nee Twichell



"I trust we will look after our future
as well as our ancestors looked after our past"