| John Blackwell 1775 |
| 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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Information on the Downing Family and Generations
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The Downings, like many of the pioneer families in America had interesting lives full of hardship and hard work. They succeeded in their deeds and the resulting descendents are anxious to tell the Downing story. This page captures some of the information that has been sent along by those descendents. Credit is given to each contributor for every item.
The Blackwell family joined with the Downing family in the year 1887 when in that year, on the 17th of March in the town of Litchfield, Minnesota the daughter of John Blackwell and Mary Jane McGannon married the son of Nelson Downing and Clarrisa H. Cone. This is the connection to the Blackwell family.
As a modest footnote, Clarrisa H. Cone was the daughter of Nancy Thomas. Nancy is a descendent of Daniel Spencer and Mehitable Spencer who are reported to have come over on the Mayflower. There is no listing of them on the first sailing of the Mayflower so it must have been on one of the other sailings. I have yet to find passenger lists for those other sailings. The second sailing took place in 1629 with 35 passengers. Later, the other sailings occurred in 1630, 1633, 1634, and 1639. Although they were called the Mayflower, it was not the same boat as the first pilgrims arrived on. There was a final try in 1641 but that vessel never arrived. It is believed to have been lost at sea with over 140 passengers aboard. It appears only those that arrived on the first sailing are the celebrated families. This is most unfortunate, but to understand the importance to that event, we just have to think of who landed on the moon first, there seems to be little historical importance to those that followed.
The story of the Rufus Downing
to Rufus Downing
The story of the Rufus Downing Trading Post has been provided by Chris Wade.
Chris is the Grandson of Dr. Alfred Wade Jr. and Dr. Frank Wade is the brother to Dr. Alfred Wade Jr.
The father of the two Wade brothers is Alfred Wade Sr.
It was Alfred Wade Sr. that married Emily Chase, the daughter of Zelia Downing and Sidney Chase.
Zelia was the daughter of Rufus Downing and Lela Weston.
THE RUFUS DOWNING TRADING POST - 1832 - Nottawa Twp. St. Joseph Co., Michigan
The Downing's trading post, now near Ketcham's Corners, was in territorial times on the Ypsilanti branch of the territorial road. It was on land first located by Lindsey Warfield in 1831. Little is known of this post other than the records in the probate court at Centreville filed in the early thirties. An old invoice of goods on hand at the death of Downing, itemized articles for whose use we of the present day can only guess: "Indian knee hands, footing, bobbinet footing, wampum, sneath, 20 yards barraze, sticks of twist, lute string, etc."
The probate records give an interesting list of names from Downing's ledger: Morans--Wabega Ann, Isadore, Pierre, Nancy, Joseph, evidently the whole family. Then we find Shobi Sparep, Ship-she-Manowoe, Sheano as typical Indian names and as proof of residences in 1831: Selden Martin, P. and J. J. Godfrey, A. L. Hatch, Stephen Downing (a Revolutionary soldier and father of Rufus) and the names of the Lairds, Moutons, Engles, Dushames, Shellhouse and a long list of other interesting characters of the times. The fur trader, however, whose life thrills the imagination is the sage and diplomat of Nottawa Seepe, Patrick Marantette, who to the St. Joseph valley Indians was counselor and friend.
Nottawa Twp. St. Joseph Co., Michigan. The land on which the trading post was located was entered from the Government by Lindsey Warfield of Gates Co., N. Y., June 7, 1831; Warfield deeded one acre to School District No. 1 of Nottawa. The trading post was located between the school house and the corner of the Section on the old trail, afterwards a branch of the old Territorial road." The probate records of St. Joseph Co. give inventories of the personal property and real estate of Rufus Downing who died Sept. 1, 1834. The trading post was marked by the Abiel Fellows chapter, D. A. R. of Three Rivers, Michigan, September 17, 1918
Stephen Downing was born on Feb 12, 1762 in Canterbury, Windham, CT. He married Susannah Helme on Aug 16, 1784 More
Rufus Downing was born on Aug 22, 1792 in Cayuga, New York He married Lela Weston on Feb 16, 1816. More
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