Editor’s note: This is the second installment in a series about the Hoyt family.
Hiram developed his homestead on the south side of Hough Road. He constructed a home and barns and cleared land for the planting of crops.
His eldest daughter, Juliana, and her husband, Schuyler C. Irish, initially stayed with Hiram and Anne. In 1836, they purchased property to the east of Hiram’s. They then sold it and purchased land in Section 25 of Dryden Township on December 3, 1839. Their homestead was on Crawford Road, making them among the earliest settlers in Dryden Township.
Shortly after establishing their home, Anne was one of the first four women approved to teach in the one-room schoolhouses of Addison Township, Oakland County. The names of her sons indicate that she had a love for history: Fernando Cortez, Persis C., Benjamin F. (probably Franklin), and Americus V. (probably Vespucci).
In 1839, Anne gave birth to the couple’s ninth and last child, Albertus Hoyt. Unfortunately, Albertus died the next year, 1840 (after the 1840 U.S. Census had been taken). His burial place is not known but he may have been buried in what is now known as the Sandhill Cemetery.
On April 27, 1841, Hiram attended a meeting at the schoolhouse to establish a cemetery. Also present were Deacon Jesse Keys and James Taylor and others. They established what was originally known as the Union Interring Society. At least three known burials occurred in the cemetery before the establishment of the Society, so it is possible that Albertus is buried there but without a headstone.
Anne’s mother, Deborah Burroughs Allen died on January 29, 1843 in Bristol Township and was buried in the Sandhill Cemetery. Her husband, Parmalee Allen, was a Revolutionary War patriot. Her headstone was down and broken into multiple pieces. The Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) marked her grave but the marker was missing. Her headstone was replaced by the Almont Community Historical Society in 2019.
The day before the meeting establishing the Union Interring Society on April 26, 1841, Hiram purchased an additional 22 acres in section 32 from his brother-in-law, Samuel Johnson. This plot is located almost in the middle of section 32. It was almost a half-mile directly east of the Sandhill Cemetery.
Second daughter, Sally Anne married Franklin Allen on September 11, 1844 in Lapeer County and they resided with her parents. Franklin was born on April 6, 1822 in Wales Center, Erie County, New York.
In 1845, Benjamin F. Hoyt died at about the age of 15. Like his brother Albertus, Benjamin’s burial place is unknown but is likely in an unmarked grave in the Sandhill Cemetery or on the homestead.
Juliana and Schuyler had six children, all born in Michigan—three daughters and three sons. Their oldest child, Oleann Clara, was born September 17, 1836 followed by Harriet Marie on December 21 1838, John W. on April 24, 1842 (killed in Battle of Nashville during the Civil War), Eugene Allen on June 2, 1844, Eudosia A. on September 17, 1849, and Schuyler W. on December 18, 1850. Schuyler died on February 4, 1879 in Milton, Minnesota and Juliana died on August 3, 1887 in Mantorville, Minnesota.
Eldest son, Fernando Cortez, married Cornelia Melissa Haynes in Addison Township, Oakland County on August 29, 1846. The Haynes family was one of the founding families of Dryden. Cornelia’s Uncle Benjamin Haynes had a farm on General Squier Road west of Rochester Road. That farm is still owned and occupied by Haynes family members. Cornelia was born on November 14, 1825 in Macomb County, Michigan.
Fernando and Cornelia had nine children—seven daughters and one son and one child whose sex and birth date are not known. Four of the known children were born in Michigan and the other four were born in Minnesota. Born in Michigan were Ann Emogene born December 14, 1847; Dorcas Adell born October 13, 1851; Adelia E. born September 9, 1853; and Etta Ophelia was born November 14, 1855. In 1874, Fernando and Cornelia and some of their children moved from Minnesota west to California. Both Cornelia and Fernando died in Sebastopol, California. Fernando passed on August 10, 1881 and Cornelia died on March 4, 1910.
On August 15, 1852, Elisha Allen Hoyt married Emily Elizabeth Batchelor in Oakland County. Emily was born in Michigan on July 16, 1825, exact location is not known.
Son Americus, starting as a teenager (before 1850), was employed as a laborer for Hiram C. Wells as a cabinetmaker. Most of his life, he made his living as a cabinetmaker or carpenter.
About 1853, both Sally Anne Hoyt Allen and her husband Franklin Allen and Elisha Allen Hoyt and his wife Emily Elizabeth Batchelor Hoyt moved from Almont Township to Dodge County, Minnesota. Dodge County was just in the initial stages of being settled. Its government was organized in 1855. In 1856 or 1857, the remaining Hoyt clan members—Hiram and Anne, and their children, Juliana, Fernando, Elvira, and Americus—left Almont for Minnesota. Hiram and wife Anne were both in their sixties.
None of Hiram’s descendants currently reside in Almont, but he does have descendants in Minnesota, California, Oregon, Washington, Idaho, Florida, North Dakota, Texas and Arkansas. However, Hiram does have relatives now residing in Almont.
While researching my Sons of the American Revolution (SAR) application, I discovered Hiram, his family and his link to Bristol (Almont) Township. Hiram’s grandfather, Gideon Hoyt, is my fourth-great grandfather. I was the first member of my immediate family that was born in Almont, specifically at Bishop Hospital on East St. Clair Street. Growing up in Almont in the 1950s and 1960s I felt like an outsider because I did not have cousins, aunts and uncles, and grandparents that were born in Almont. The surnames of my kindergarten and first grade classmates read like a list of Almont’s founding families—Bristol, Borland, Bannister, Bryce, Currey, Hough, Hamilton, Havens, Smith, Spangler, Van Dyke and Wallace. The grades ahead and behind me also had familiar founding family names—Bowman, Bishop, Farley, Milliken, and Wilson.
Finding this information has eliminated that feeling of being an outsider. A relative of mine was here before most of those founders.
Finding that Hiram’s brother-in-law, William Allen, had cut the road to Almont in 1827, lets me claim that an in-law was the first person to alter the landscape of Almont Township.
Copies of the Almont Historical Society’s various books can be purchased by contacting Jim Wade at 810-796-3355 or firstname.lastname@example.org or stopping by the museum on Saturdays from 1-4 p.m.