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Click here to help identify local soldiers from the Civil War


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1861              Civil War           1865


M - R

A - D                   E - L                M - R               S - Z
 

  Killed in Action     Wounded in action      POW/MIA    
 
Died during active duty     
+ Contracted disease-illness-disability during service


Submitted by Laurie Warner Jacobs on 5-31-07:

From the Record First Michigan Sharpshooters, First and Second U.S. Sharpshooters, Company D Western Sharpshooters Civil War 1861-1865 published by the State of Michigan, as pertains to the dress of the Western Sharpshooters:

"It was armed with the American Deer and Target Rifle. The accoutrements were not of the kind prescribed by army regulations, but consisted of a bullet pouch of bear skin covering and a powder horn or in some cases a flask. In the bullet pouch was a compartment where the soldier carried his screw drivers, bullet moulds and patch cutter, singular implements for a soldier; but Birge's boys moulded their own bullets, greased them and patched them with as much care as an old hunter would, and used them as effectively. It was the design of General Fremont to give them a complete hunter dress, but this was vetoed by Halleck, and the only thing peculiar about the dress was the hat, which was a gray sugar loaf shaped affair, with three squirrel tails running from both back and front and meeting at the apex of the crown in an undescribable knot."

 

Mason, John W.
Birge's Western 
Sharpshooters
Company D

Age 27

In service 
2-27-1864 to 6-25-1865

From Hartford MI

 

Mather, William
Birge's Western
 Sharpshooters
Company D

Age 26

In service 
2-26-1864 to 9-16-1864
+Died during active duty - taken sick and died
at General Hospital.

From Hartford MI

 

 
  Mays, John A.
Sergeant

Birge's Western 
Sharpshooters
Company D

Age 22

In service 
10-20-1861 to 7-11-1865
Honorable Discharge

From Millburg MI

 
 
Matrau, Morgan W.
Morgan Matrau - Civil War
b  4-29-1847        d  7-30-1907
Age 60y, 3m, 1d

Born in the Penn Yann Community
 of Bainbridge Twp., MI. Died at his home on Territorial Rd & County Line Rd. in Bainbridge Twp, MI.  Buried in Byers Cemetery - Row 3
Bainbridge Twp., MI

Company B,
12th Michigan Infantry

Enlisted at age 17 in 1864
Mustered out 2-15-1866

Served mostly with
General Steele in Arkansas. 

Lived on a farm that bordered
Van Buren County Line Road
and Territorial Rd in Watervliet MI and Hartford MI.  Farm remains
 in the family in 2002.

 Photo and information submitted by Bernice Matrau Rudell 1-2003. 
She is the great-granddaughter
of Morgan W. Matrau

In the Civil War photo of the
 old military boys from Keeler
Matrau, Henry Clay
U.S. Army - Captain
6th Wisconsin Regiment - Co. G
(Later became part of General Bragg's Iron Brigade).
b  4-2-1845        d  1-5-1917
Age 71y, 9m, 5d

Born in the Penn Yann Community of Bainbridge Twp., MI Died in Windsor, CO. Buried in Norfolk, NE

In Service 1861 to 1865

Advanced to Captain and was said to be the youngest captain in the U.S. Army. He served continuously until being mustered out in 1865. Was in 1st and 2nd Battles of Bull Run, 7 Days Battle of the Wilderness,
Antietam, Gettysburg, and the Siege of Richmond.

Became Mayor of Norfolk, NE and was a member of the State Legislature from Madison Co.

Information submitted by Bernice Matrau Rudell 1-2003. 



 
McAlpine, John McAlpine, Franklin
US Army - Infantry
b 2-13-1847    d 4-28-1905
Age 58y, 2m, 14d
Died at Jackson MI
Buried in Keeler Cemetery, 
Keeler MI

In service 1864 to 1865

 

John McAlpine - CivWar
US Army - Infantry
Corporal
b 1-28-1845    d 11-5-1910   
Age 65y, 9m, 8d
Died at Hartford MI 
Buried in Keeler Cemetery
Keeler MI


Birge's Western
Sharpshooters
Company D

Age 19

According to the book 
"
A History of Hartford"  
by Charles A. Spaulding:

  He served with General Sherman in all engagements.  John was knocked down by a bullet that had passed through and killed the soldier in front of him. He brought the battered bullet home with him.  His daughter Ethel has it and she says she often wonders who the man was who lost his life that her father's life might be spared. Mr. McAlpine was promoted to corporal, was in the grand review at Washington and was  honorably discharged. 

In service 
2-15-1864 to 7-11-1865

From 
Past Creek, Chemung Co., NY
Lived in Keeler, MI 
Moved to Hartford MI in 1904 

In the Civil War photo of the
 old military boys from Keeler

Photo submitted by great granddaughter, Laurie Warner Jacobs 5-2007
 

McKenzie, Perry



Click here to view Civil War Veterans photo in Keeler Cemetery

McMillen, John

 

Click here to view Civil War Veterans photo in Keeler Cemetery

 
McKinley, Francis
Birge's Western
 Sharpshooters
Company D

Age 18

In service 
2-13-1864 to 7-11-1865
Honorable Discharge

From Bainbridge MI
Meachum, Simeon
Sergeant
1st Michigan Calvary
Company K
b Jan 27, 1842      d Feb 3, 1884
   Medina OH          Hartford MI
Age 42y, 7d

Buried at
Lawrence Hill Cemetery,
Lawrence MI (top of the hill,
behind the pumphouse

Wounded in in the groin area.

Listed as residing in Hartford
during 1870 and 1880 census

Attended Shafer Lake School

Information submitted 4-13-2004 by Virginia Meachum, ggreat neice of Simeon Meachum.
Mead, Gilbert E.
Corporal
Birge's Western 
Sharpshooters
Company D

Age 18

In service 
2-24-1864 to 7-11-1865
Honorable Discharge

From Decatur MI
 
Merrill, Lewis A.
Birge's Western 
Sharpshooters
Company D

In service 
10-19-1861 to 12-4-1861
+Died during active duty
of disease in General Hospital
at St. Louis MO

From Bainbridge MI
Miller, Martin
Corporal
Birge's Western 
Sharpshooters
Company D

In service 
9-23-1861 to 3-14-1862
+Died during active duty. Was taken sick after Battle of Ft. Donelson TN, died 3-14-1862 on Steamer Lancaster between Metal Landing & Pittsburgh Landing on Tennessee River.

From Keeler MI
Nelson, Harmon
Birge's Western
Sharpshooters
Company D

In service 
8-16-1862 to 6-2-1865
Honorable Discharge

Age 18

From Millburgh MI
Nelson, Marcus S.
Birge's Western 
Sharpshooters
Company D

In service
 3-10-1862 to 10-4-1862
Killed in Action
Nelson, William R.
Birge's Western 
Sharpshooters
Company D

In service 
8-14-1862 to 6-2-1865
Honorable Discharge

Age 23

From Millburgh MI
Noble, Henry W.
Birge's Western Sharpshooters
Company D

In service 
2-25-1864 to 5-27-1864
Killed in Action
Northrup, Orrin M.
Birge's Western 
Sharpshooters
Company D

In service 
2-26-1864 to 7-11-1865
Honorable Discharge
Age 19

From Decatur MI
Olcott, Orlen F.
Corporal
Twenty-Eighth Infantry
Company G

In service
9-30-1864 to 6-12-1865

From Hartford MI


From the
History of Berrien & Van Buren Co's Michigan


Submitted by Arlene Hurley Ward
Olds, Allen

In service 1861 to 18__
Palmer, Hiram
b. 4-24-1838 in Yorktown, IN
d 3-16-1911 in Keeler Twp.
Age 72y, 10m, 22d


11-16-1861- Mustered in
at New Iberia, LA
10-23-1865 - Mustered out 
at Baton Rouge, LA
+Developed night blindness in war.  Served in 13 battles.

Information and photo submitted by great granddaughter,
Bernice Matrau Rudell on
12-20-2002
Payne, George
Birge's Western
Sharpshooters
Company D

In service 
10-26-1861 to 7-7-1865
Honorable Discharge

Age 25

From Lawrence, MI
  Phelps, Henry
Birge's Western 
Sharpshooters
Company D

In service 
8-14-1862 to 6-2-1865
Honorable Discharge

Age 20

From Lawrence, MI
Piersall, David
Birge's Western 
Sharpshooters
Company D

In service 1861 to 18__

Age 21

From Bainbridge, MI
Polmantier, Seth
Birge's Western 
Sharpshooters
Company D

In service 
9-24-1861 to 6-20-1862
+Taken sick and discharged 
for disability

From Van Buren Co., MI
Pomeroy, George


 

Click here to view Civil War Veterans photo in Keeler Cemetery

 

  Prosser, Henry L.
Corporal

Birge's Western
Sharpshooters
Company D

In service 
9-26-1861 to 7-20-1863
+Died during active duty
taken sick and died at Camp Davis MS

From Van Buren Co., MI
Randall, Murdock A.
Birge's Western 
Sharpshooters
Company D

In service 
8-15-1862 to 6-2-1865
Honorable Discharge
Age 20

From Millburg, MI
Ray, John B.
John B. Ray - CivWar.  Hartford MI
136th New York Infantry
Regiment Volunteers
Co. C
b 10-20-1841     d 4-14-1906
Western NY      Hartford MI
Age 64y, 5m, 24d
buried in
Maple Hill Cemetery
Hartford MI
Section 12, lot 11

In service
At age 20,
enlisted on Aug 4 1862, mustered in as private on Sept 25 1862.

Wounded in action
 July 3 1863 at Gettysburg

Moved from New York to Watervliet in 1871 and to Hartford in 1881 where he lived till his death in 1906.

Son of:
Abel Ray and Betsey (Brown) Ray

Married to:
Almeda L (Alcott) Ray

John kept a daily log during 1863 thru 1865 which were used to make a book. A copy of this book is in the Hartford Public Library. His brother William died as a prision of war in Andersonville Ga in 1864. He also had three other brothers who located in the Watervliet/Hartford area in the mid to late 1800s. These were David (died 6-12-1892 and buried in Sec 4 at Pioneer in Hartford), Henry and George (buried in the Watervliet cemetery)

Information submitted 9-20-2012 by William Stoddard. John was my great great grand uncle.
 

Ray, William
b                       d 1864
                             Andersonville Ga

In service
18__ - 1864

  POW/MIA    

Son of:
Abel Ray and Betsey (Brown) Ray


 

Reynolds, Oscar G.
13th Mich. Infantry
Company K
US Army
b 1841         d 1916
                 Hartford MI
Age 75

In service
1864 - 1866
+ Contracted disease-illness-disability during service

Oscar spent some time in Harper Hospital in Detroit before discharge.  There is a story that he was blinded when ammunition he was carrying exploded (unverified).

Son of
Sylvanus Reynolds

Married to
Olive Kemp Reynolds

Resided in Hartford
1850 - 1916

11-2-2011 - Information submitted by great-grandson, Grant Shafer.

Riley, George
Birge's Western 
Sharpshooters
Company D

In service 
12-15-1862 to 6-5-1865
Wounded in action on 5-27-1864, left leg amputated. Honorable Discharge
Age 18

From Decatur, MI

 

Ritter Jr., Phillip 
Birge's Western Sharpshooters
Company D

In service 
10-14-1861 to 2-23-1862
+Discharged for disability.

From Van Buren Co., MI

 

 
Robinson, Alfred D. Dyer, Jamie

Alfred D. Robinson - Civil War
Second Sergeant
Birge's Western 
Sharpshooters Company D

Transferred to Company D 66th Infantry Regiment of Illinois Volunteers

9-24-1861
Enlisted at age 24 at Hartford MI. 
11-9-1861
Mustered in at St. Louis MO. 
7-7-1865
Mustered out at Louisville KY 
 7-7-1865
Honorably Discharged at Springfield IL

Military Muster Rolls indicate:
"Promoted from ranks as
4 sergeant 6-15-1862
May and June 1863
listed as 3 sergeant
July and August 1963
listed as 2 sergeant
November and December
listed as sergeant"

Click here to view a description of the Sharpshooter uniforms.


Alfred D. Robinson participated in the battles of Mount Zion, Fort Donelson, Shiloh, Corinth, Luka, Rienzi, Hatchie, and was on the campaign from Corinth to Pulaski. Also on a portion of the Atlanta campaign; was with the Provisional Division of the Army of the Tennessee at the battle of Nashville, TN; was on the steamer Argyle up the Ohio River, by rail to Annapolis MD, thence by ocean steamer to Port Royal, NC; thence to Goldsboro, NC, where he joined the regiment on the march to Richmond, VA and the Grand Review at Washington DC
on May 24, 1865.

Served as body guard and escort for General G.M. Dodge
Dec 24, 1963 until his discharge
Sept 16-1864 at Detroit MI"

Born in New York
Died Aug 8, 1879 
in Hartford MI

Alfred Robinson is a great grandfather to Nancy Dyer Huffman, Robert Dyer, and William (Bill) Dyer. Robert and Bill served in the Korean War.



Medals Jamie Dyer won with his Henry Rifle and black powder revolver in National competition in 2003.

 
Jamie Dyer 2003
2003 - Jamie Dyer

19th Michigan
Volunteer Infantry*


Jamie Dyer is the great great grandson of Alfred D. Robinson, who fought during the Civil War.  He competes in skirmishes with his Henry rifle, black powder revolver, musket, carbine and smooth bore rifle.  In 2004, he had built a 24 lb.
confederate mortar, which will also be used in competitions.  Competitors must be in civil war uniform during competition. In the fall of 2003, Jamie won 2 first place medals with the Henry rifle and a 3rd place medal with his black powder revolver in National competition.  He bought the Henry rifle after reading one of Great Grand Pa Robinson's Civil War letters. Alfred mentions that he and many members of his unit purchased Henry rifles.  

Jamie is a graduate of HHS Class of 1975 and son of William Dyer, who served in the Korean War.

The Henry rifle touts a legend in Civil War history. The Volcanic Co. went bankrupt in 1857 and was reorganized as the New Haven Arms Co. by Oliver Winchester.   Benjamin Tyler Henry, New Haven Arms plant superintendent redesigned the Volcanic repeating rifle to fire a .44 caliber rimfire brass cartridge loaded with 25 grains of powder behind a 216 grain bullet. Thus, evolving the Henry rifle - the first practical, lever action repeating rifle, which was patented in 1860. The first Henry rifles appeared on the market during the summer of 1862, by October only 900 guns had been manufactured. Late in 1864, production peaked at 290 rifles per month, and a total of 13,000 were manufactured through 1866. Due to it's accuracy and rapid rate of fire, the Henry became popular with military and civilian purchasers.   Only about 1731 Henry rifles were purchased by the Ordnance Dept. between 1862 and 1865. Among units wholly or partially armed with the Henry were the 7th, 16th, 23rd, 51st, 66th, and 80th Illinois Volunteer Infantry outfits. A confederate officer is credited with the "It's a rifle that you could load on Sunday and shoot all week long". Federal ordnance officers largely ignored the Henry and soldiers bought the guns at their own expense.  The Henry had a list price of $42 with a sling.  The rifles were often purchased through payroll deduction. A private soldier's salary was $13 per month, making the Henry rifle expensive...for many it was well worth the price.

In 2004, original Henry rifles are rare and valuable collectibles, bringing a price of about $14,000.

*19th Michigan Volunteer Infantry is part of the Northwest Territory of the North-South Skirmish Assn. Inc.  During 2004, this unit consists of 7 men and 3 women.  Since this is not an actual governmental function, no military ranking is attained.  The association hosts summer regional shoots, with spring and fall national shoots in Virginia. Visit the NSSA website for more information www.n-ssa.org

 Root, Milo
Birge's Western 
Sharpshooters
Company D

In service 
11-11-1862 to ?
Wounded in action at Balls Knob GA on 5-9-1864, afterwards transferred to Co. E, 23rd Regiment, Veterans Reserve Corps.

Age 22

From Bangor, MI

Root Jr., Rueben
28th Michigan Infantry Co.
b 1829     d 1907
Age 78
Died in Bangor MI
Buried in Hill Cemetery, Lawrence MI

In Service
9-1-1864 to 6-5-1866

Age 35 at time of enlistment.

Various sources have listed Rueben in the Arlington Twp area, enlisting at Decatur MI, and some indicate only Van Buren County MI. 

The 28th Michigan Infantry Co. fought the Confederate Army at the Battle of Wise Forks, NC with heavy skirmishing and taking over 300 prisoners. They guarded the Atlanta & North Carolina Railroad. They remained on duty in Goldsboro, NC until June 5, 1866, at which time they were muster out of the service, made their way to Detroit, paid, and disbanded.

Family records indicate Ruben living in the Arlington, Lawrence, and Hartford areas.

Rueben's great-grandson,
 Donald Charles Root served during the Korean War.

Information submitted 3-11-2004 by his great-granddaughter, Carol Root Woodward
Rossman, Hiram
Birge's Western Sharpshooters
Company D

In service 
10-11-1861 to ?
Transferred to 
Secret Service 12-11-1862, 
rest of service unknown

From Van Buren Co., MI
    Rupert, John
(aka Rubert)
Birge's Western 
Sharpshooters
Company D
b 1834              d 4-26-1862
New York         Owl Creek TN
Buried in Keeler Cemetery
Keeler MI

In service
Enlisted 9-24-1861 at Keeler MI 
Mustered in 11-9-1861 at St Louis MO

On the North Missouri campaign, in the battle of Mt. Zion MO Dec 28, 1861, On the Donelson campaign and in the battle of Ft. Donelson TN Feb 13-16, 1862. In the battle of Shiloh Apr 6-7, 1862.
+Died during active duty
Taken sick and died in the Regimental Hospital at Owl Creek TN

From Keeler MI

John's brother, William Rupert,
also served during the Civil War

9-28-2004 - Information provided by Michael Schroeder, St. Joseph MI. Michael is related through John's mother, Maria Havens, daughter of William Havens and Hannah Hale, pioneers of Keeler  pioneers of Keeler Township, MI

Rupert, William
(aka Rubert)

Hartford Day Spring
May 23, 1923. 
____________________________



Camp Davies, Miss., April 2, 1863.

 Uncle William:  I take the opportunity to write a few lines to you to inform you that I am well and hope these few lines may find you and your family as well.  I had not heard from you in a long time so I though I would write to you once more.  I don't know as I can think of much to write but I will write what I can.

Our boys are all well at present and able to eat their rations, the weather is warm and pleasant here and soldiering goes well.  We get plenty to eat and drink and wear, and not much to do now days.  We have a little guard duty to do and some scouting to do.

We have been out on two days scout and we just got back last night.  We went down south of here about thirty miles.  We heard that there was a rebel camp down there so we thought we would go down there and see about it.  When we got down there we found a guerilla band there of about one hundred.  When they saw us coming they got up and skedaddled, but we got six of them.  Among the six we got the old guerilla chief and one of his captains and four privates, I don't know what they will do with the old chief, but I think he will not leave our camp.  We got a rope around the old fellow's neck and we made him own every thing.  He owned that he had burned bridges and burned cotton that belonged to the government and he had stolen horses and robbed the cotton buyer.  Said that he and his wife sold the cotton buyer fourteen hundred worth of cotton and he watched him until he got out a little ways then he followed him up and robbed him and burned the cotton.

This old chief said that he had taken 13 or 14 boys that belonged to our regiment.  The old chief said he expected to die now that he had got into the hands of the Yankees.

We treat guerillas here as spies so I expect that the old chief's sentence is death.  I think we ought to just take and shoot all such men as them.  What do you think about it?  Well, uncle William, I will tell you about this war.  It would be a bad place for you or any other new recruit.  When you had to come down to pilot bread and sow belly.  But us fellows that have been here so long can stand it.  One day after another passes off and I don't know where it goes to.  Time don't seem half as long as it did one year ago.  Well, I don't know as I can think of anything more at present, only I would like to see you all first rate.  It was 18 months ago yesterday since I have seen any of you.  Nothing more at present, and no news here.  I send my best respects to you and all.  You must excuse this poor writing, and write soon.

This  letter was written during the Civil War by William Rupert to his uncle, William Havens of Hartford.
 

September 27, 2004, the letter was submitted for publication on this website by Michael Schroeder, St. Joseph MI. Michael is an ancestor to John and William Rupert. 
 


Birge's Western 
Sharpshooters
Company D
b  1839          d 5-27-1864
New York         Dallas GA
Buried in Keeler Cemetery
Keeler MI

In service

 Enlisted 9-16-1861 at Keeler (Age 24)
Mustered in 11-9-1861 at St Louis MO.

Was in the battle of Mt. Zion MO Dec 28, 1861; in the battle of Ft Donelson Feb 13-16, 1862; in the battle of Shiloh Apr 6, 7,1862; in the siege of Corinth MS Apr 20 - May 30, 1982. Entered Corinth and on to Rienzi and Hatchie Bottom to the battle of Luka MS Sep 19, 1872; Corinth MS Oct 3, 4, 1862. Helped to build stockade at Camp Davies from Nov 26, 1862 to Nov 1, 1863; then on to Pulaski campaign. 

Re-enlisted at Pulaski Dec 23, 1863, mustered in on Dec 24th. Home on veteran furlough for 30 days, returned to Pulaski TN Mar 8, 1864.  On the Chattanooga and Atlanta campaigns, in the battle of Snake Creek Gap, or Ball's Knob GA May 9; Resaca May 14; Lay's Ferry May 15; Rome Cross Roads May16.
Killed May 27, 1864 at Dallas GA during Battle of Pickett's Mill.

From Keeler MI

William's brother, John Rupert,
also served during the Civil War

9-28-2004 - Information provided by Michael Schroeder, St. Joseph MI. Michael is related through William's mother, Maria Havens, daughter of William Havens and Hannah Hale, pioneers of Keeler Township, MI


WEBMASTER NOTE:
  
     
The communities of Hartford, Keeler, Decatur, Lawrence, Bangor, Millburg, Bainbridge, and Arlington have been added to the Civil War Veterans listed above because of the close proximity to the Hartford-Keeler area. The Birge's Western Sharpshooters listed above were from a "History of the Regiment" by Sergeant Ren Barker, of Company D." and were found listed on the internet site http://www.michiganinthewar.org/sharpshooters/western.htm.   Many of the names show "Van Buren Co." as the hometown; some were definitely from the Hartford area, but the actual home town of others are unknown. This is the reason for inclusion of the Van Buren Co. names. Other local communities in Van Buren and Berrien Counties are also listed at this site. 
     
Updated information is from With The Western Sharpshooters Michigan Boys of Company D 66th Illinois by Lorenzo A. Barker 1905.  New edition information with additional material, 1994, was provided by William (Bill) Dyer in August, 2002.
     
As the Michigan men who volunteered exceeded Michigan's quotas, many men joined units in other states.
     
The Michigan Calvary Brigade was made up of the 1st, 5th, 6th, and 7th units under the command of Brigadier General George Custer of Monroe Michigan.  At the conclusion of the war, some of these regiments were kept in federal service against their will to suppress the Indian uprisings in the west. 


Submitted by Laurie Warner Jacobs on 5-31-07:

From the Record First Michigan Sharpshooters, First and Second U.S. Sharpshooters, Company D Western Sharpshooters Civil War 1861-1865 published by the State of Michigan, as pertains to the dress of the Western Sharpshooters:

"It was armed with the American Deer and Target Rifle. The accoutrements were not of the kind prescribed by army regulations, but consisted of a bullet pouch of bear skin covering and a powder horn or in some cases a flask. In the bullet pouch was a compartment where the soldier carried his screw drivers, bullet moulds and patch cutter, singular implements for a soldier; but Birge's boys moulded their own bullets, greased them and patched them with as much care as an old hunter would, and used them as effectively. It was the design of General Fremont to give them a complete hunter dress, but this was vetoed by Halleck, and the only thing peculiar about the dress was the hat, which was a gray sugar loaf shaped affair, with three squirrel tails running from both back and front and meeting at the apex of the crown in an undescribable knot."


     Not all names have been entered to this Civil War site and will be entered as soon as possible.

This site will change when names and photos become available.  Check back often for updates.  Please use the on-line submission form or send an email if you have any information on any one who served in the military and lived in Hartford or Keeler at any time during their life.  I would appreciate knowing of any incorrect information displayed on the site so it can be corrected.  


Information for this web site was gathered from personal interviews, newspaper articles, scrapbooks, personal photo albums, and other documented materials - many available to the public at the Hartford Public Library or Van Buren County Historical Museum.  Please report any typographical errors, updated information, or incorrectly stated information to the webmaster for correction.  Reprinting for personal and instructional purposes is permitted, however, unauthorized commercial reprinting of this information or unauthorized linking to photos-pictures on this site is strictly prohibited without written permission from the webmaster. 



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A Pictorial History of Hartford, Michigan
Emma Thornburg Sefcik,
Competent Secretarial Service
Copyright 2000 - All rights reserved.


Revised: May 27, 2015


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