Thursday, April 07, 2016

History of Francis & Rebecca Pierce

The following is a transcription of the handwritten "History of Francis & Rebecca Pierce" located at the Wells County Public Library in Bluffton, Indiana.  The document is located in their genealogy section in the family files under Pierce.

The document was all in the same handwritting, and appears to have been taken from an interview of India (Pierce) Leavell.

History of Francis & Rebecca Pierce

Written 1939 by grand-daughter India Pierce Leavell whose parents were Henry E. Pierce who was born oct 10, 1833 and died July 1, 1901.  He Simeathy Smelser, born April 10, 1834 and died Jan 29, 1918.

"From my earliest recollection until about years of age we lived within about one half mile of their home which was on a farm.  The frame home in which they lived consisted of four large rooms with a front portico, a back porch covering the well.  They must have been in their seventys when I knew them best.  Their seven children were all married and had families of their own.  William Hickey, a foster son resided with them until he married.

Their childrens names were Henry, Frank, Edmond, Albert, Margaret (Burr Simermans grandmother), Minerva and Elmira.  Grandfather Pierce always called the children by their full name.  Grandfather Pierce was a tall slender man and was rather round shouldered, and was never very strong.  He had a smooth face with the exception of side burns.  He was a cabinet maker by trade.  He was a well educated man.  He was born May 9, 1805 in New Jersey and died ____ near Greensfork in Wayne county Ind.  

Grandmother Pierce' name before marriage was Rebecca Page.  She was rather low (short) and not heavy.  She had very black hair that never turned gray.  She was a graduate of a Philadelphia Academy.  She had a wonderful memory and remembered all important dates.  During the Civil War she would read the war news to people who come on horse back for miles to hear the news, as they were the only ones in the neighborhood that received a newspaper.  She was born in Greenbrook Pa. Aug 18, 1806.

Her own father's given name is not known, but her grandfather was Dr. John Page.  She had 2 sisters and 3 brothers, one of them was John, noted detective of Richmond.  She was a Graduate from a college in Philadelphia, and a great reader.  She had the habit of combing her hair afresh, changing to a clean dress, and sitting, each day, down by the window - to read.  She was an expert in yeast rolls and bread, and they were very fond of tea. (May have been of English origin)

Grandfather Pierce was a great reader, well informed.  After their marriage, they resided in Piqua, Ohio where their first son was born Oct 10, 1833.  His name was Henry Aldred Pierce.  Margaret Pierce (Burr's grandmother) was born Oct 17, 1840.  She was married to Wm. Henry Summers Sept 3rd, 1868.  They were the parents of nine children, Lulu (Burr's mother), Park, Edwin, Gurdon, Florence, Chancey, Mina and Ira.  She died Dec. 17th, 1930.

When the foster son, Wm Hickey, left them, they broke up their home and went to live with son, Albert.  Soon after, they all moved to Wayne county, Indiana.  India says that in all the times she was with them, she never saw either of them out of humor or speak a cross word.  Francis died first, of tuberculosis.  She lived a few years longer.


At the bottom in another handwriting : Burrs Great Grandfather Abraham Summers Home place was the corner of Wells and Allen County line and 750.

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