MARCH 2003

       JIM FAGERBURG                                                                                                                       DICK GARFIELD                                                                                                      

Dear Readers:
January and February really went speeding by didn't they? This issue starts the 2nd. year of newletters, and the number of readers that I am sending the letters to by e-mail has increased to over 100, plus the readers receiving it thru the Garfield List. During the past year I received many responses from our readers saying that they had information about their family line and was glad to find a place where it could be combined with the rest of the Garfield's. I answered, as far as I can remember, each and every e-mail that I received asking them to forward what information they had and they said they would. For the most part that was the last that I ever heard from any of them. PLEASE, if you have information on your family line, and you want it added to what we already have, get that info to me so that it can be added!! Within the next year or so I would like to be able to consolidate all this information into some type of folder or something, then add chapter by chapter to the newsletter so it could be copied by anyone who wants it. Thanks everybody, Dick Garfield.


How nice to get back from a short FL vacation to find your newsletter to brighten another
snowey day.  It was there among several dozen "forward" spam items.  And most
welcome.   I now have to check my huge "Mason" book and see about Abigail who
married Moses Garfield.  Maybe a connection of cousins!
I assume you have the French Creek, (NY) booklet published in 1979 (or one of your
family does). There are several Garfields mentioned or pictured in it. Had forgotten about
it until sorting through bookcase for something else. Keep up the good work.  I for one
certainly appreciate hearing the Garfield information.  alm
Thanks ALM, that was nice to hear. Nancy and I might make it to the Corry area this summer so maybe we will see you there, Dick


Garfield Farm Museum <> wrote:
Dick - I have been meaning to contact you. We are planning a Garfield & Mighell Family
Reunion at the museum for July 26 and 27. Any/all Garfields are welcome. I plan to do a
mailing to a list of Garfields around the country as well. I am in the midst of redoing our
members database to migrate it to Windows (it is still in DOS) so that is keeping me
challenged as well as major strategic planning now we have completed the purchase of
the farm next door after a 4 year effort. If you want to post the date on the website as the
current plan I will provide further details as we begin to solidify things. Interested people
can contact me at >< or call the museum at 630 584-8485. Thanks.
Jerome Johnson
Executive Director

As more information becomes available I will be adding it to the newsletters, but don't hesitate calling Jerome for whatever information I can't supply you. The museum is located in LaFox, ILL. west of Chicago.

Does any one want to claim this Garfield?
by Samuel Clay Bassett.   Chapter 26 is titled the Homesteader.   On page 112  under
Sharon Township--Town no. 10, Range no 13 JAMES GARFIELD is listed.   The year is
recorded as 1871. Buffalo County is in Nebraska.  There is a faint possibility that I should
claim James. He might be my Grandfather Elijah's brother. But we havn't been properly
introduced so I'm not inclined to say he is mine  (or the property of our Garfield family
members).  Any one have more information about James?  Nancy Garfield Risdon

Can anybody help Nancy out here??

Mr.Garfield, That is correct the farm is in Worcester New York, Oneana County.  There was a sign in the front yard from the Historical society Proclaiming the place to be the "Garfield Farm"  I thought for sure I would be able to find something on the web, but have not been able to.  I thank you for helping me out with my curiosity.

Thank You, Laura

I can't find out anything either, does anyone know about this farm?? Dick.


Christine Mercer-Cleasby  wrote:

Source: "History of Spencer, Massachusetts From It's Earliest Settlement to the Year 1860", by James Draper. Henry J. Howland Publishing, Worchester, MA, 1924. pp. 198-199

GARFIELD, Samuel, from Weston, settled on the central part of lot [16]in 1748, where
his grandson, Joseph GARFIELD, now lives. He had by his wife, Hannah, a daughter  named Hannah, b. July 18, 1755. His wife died and he maried Abigail Pierce of Holden, MA on May 27, 1756. Samuel had by his wife Abigail, Samuel, b. March 5, 1756; Joseph, b. Sept. 19, 1758; Daniel, b. Sept. 29, 1760; Josiah, b. Oct. 12, 1762; Abigail, b. Aug. 28, 1764; Enoch, b. Sept. 28, 1766; Elisha, b. April 25, 1769; John, b. July 2, 1771; Elizabeth, b. Sept.15, 1773; Silas, b. Jan. 19, 1776.
Mr. GARFIELD d. June 12, 1792, aged 72. His wife Abigail, d. Jan. 23,1816.
He was a large, athletic man, formerly well recollected by many of our people for his sallies of wit, feats of strength and cheerful disposition. The following anecdote may serve as a specimen of his great strength.
Mr. GARFIELD, being at the store of Col. Chandler in Worcester(who was also fond of a joke) was enquiring the price of a certain grindstone which he wished to purchase. Mr. GARFIELD thought the price too high for so small a stone, and said he could carry it home on his back to Spencer. "Well," says Col. Chandler, "the stone weighs 200 lbs.,and if you will carry it to Spencer without taking it from your shoulder until you arrive there, you shall have it free." No quicker said than done. The stone was placed upon his shoulder, and he literally complied with the bargain, brought the stone to Spencer, without removing it from his shoulders. A remnant of the stone may now be seen at his former place of residence. He was one of the selectmen in 1745, when Leicester and Spencer were one town.


Nancy Risdon  wrote:

This is for the Spanish American War veteran's list:
Garfield, Charles A. - Company F.    
This is from a small item titled 1898 NEBRASKA 2ND INFANTRY REGESTER. 

And this is dated 28 August, 1860:
1860 FEDERAL CENSUS OF THE NEBRASKA TERRITORY, BUTLER COUNTY P.O. PLATTSMOUTH; page 95   [All are from dwelling 823-family 648]
Garfield, L. B.     age 45    sex m.  profession farmer  birthplace, New York
Garfield, Margaret     40          f                                                     Ireland
Garfield George        17          m                                                    Pennsylvania
Garfield, Horace       13           m                                                   Pennsylvania
Garfield, A                11           ?                                                    Pennsylvania
Garfield, F                  9           f                                                     Pennsylvania
Garfield, V?                7           m                                                   Pennsylvania
Garfield, Manda?       3           f                                                      Missouri
As transciibed by submitters from microfilm of the 8th Federal Census, National Archives fillm series M653. Submitted to U.S.Genweb Nebraska Archives, May 1998
by Ted & Carole Miller.

Sent to us by Judy Jebian:

Charles Garfield: Citizen Pioneer in Michigan Forestry

Charles W. Garfield, born in Wisconsin in 1848, first came to revere trees as a child, the story goes, on the trip that brought his family to reside in Michigan. Encountering a monumental roadside tree near Martin, on the coach road between Kalamazoo and Grand Rapids, the stage stopped and its occupants gaped. Reputed to be ten feet in diameter, the champion walnut reportedly prompted Garfield's father to urge, "Take off your hat, Charlie, to that noble tree."

The meeting was an important one for Michigan's forests. Garfield, later a successful and beloved Grand Rapids banker, would become a mighty force in the battle to renew Michigan's cutover and burned-over forests - devoting over 40 years to the cause, mostly as a volunteer.

An 1870 graduate of Michigan Agricultural College, Garfield became a nurseryman and horticulturist, then Secretary of the State Horticultural Society in 1876. As a new member of the State House of Representatives in 1881, Garfield introduced a modest bill that required the planting of shade trees along both sides of public highways one hundred feet apart and within eight feet of the highway edge, protected existing shade trees on roadsides, and credited roadside property owners for a portion of their highway tax if they planted trees.

Garfield's bill did not pass and the plunder of Michigan's forests continued. At an 1897 Arbor Day observance, A. A. Crozier described the grim scene in Michigan's north. While traveling to farmers' institutes in the region the past two winters, he said, "I think some of you will be as surprised as I was when I say that in traveling nearly two thousand miles through some forty counties in the lumber regions of the State, I cannot now recall having seen in any one place as much as a single standing acre of white pine in good condition." Riding from Manistee on the Lake Michigan shore to Saginaw, he added, he had seen an almost continuous succession of "abandoned lumber fields, miles upon miles of stumps as far as the eye can see"

Such scenes, and the swift abandonment of the north by the lumber industry, fostered a new political consensus that the state had been exploited and cheated. The Legislature created a forestry commission in 1899. Charles Garfield was named president of the three-man panel.

The law authorized the Commission to withdraw from sale up to 200,000 acres of state swamplands and tax-reverted lands to create a state forest reserve. In May 1901, at the next session of the Legislature, lawmakers approved a reserve of approximately 35,000 acres - the genesis of the modern state forest system.

In a pamphlet entitled A Little Talk about Michigan Forestry, of which 5,000 copies were made and distributed around the state in 1900, Garfield attacked the "thoughtlessness in the great waste of our forestry heritage." Garfield envisioned "great areas of trees all up and down this beautiful state, protecting head waters of our rivers, making use of our unfertile sands, giving variety and beauty to our gentle hills and refreshing the weary, whether human or otherwise, with nature's quiet cathedrals."

Not all of those observing the forest reserves in their back yards were impressed. Residents of northern Michigan resented policies made by downstate legislators and state officials, arguing that immediate development by private interests was more beneficial than long-range public lands management. In July 1902 the Commission and guests traveled to Roscommon to tour the new reserves. "Flags were at half-mast on the flagpoles in the village," reported a local newspaper, "and the reception they received from the people, although civil and without any hostile demonstration, was speakingly that their presence was not wanted." But Garfield and the Commission persevered, slowly winning converts.

Devastating forest fires consumed millions of acres of northern Michigan lands in the fall of 1908 and renewed calls for a greater effort to renew the state's forest heritage. In his January 1909 State of the State message to the Legislature, Michigan Governor Fred Warner directed its attention "to the desirability of taking active measures to lessen the fire waste of general property which is steadily increasing and which, during the past five years in this country, has aggregated a billion and a quarter of dollars."

But the 1909 Legislature at first balked at reforming Michigan's forest policies. Garfield fretted in a letter to an ally, "If we are checkmated in the present Legislature, after all that has been done, there will be a hopelessness in the task before us, which has never been so strongly in evidence before. It seemed as if after the holocaust of last year and with that splendid work of the commission of inquiry in evidence, that if ever there was an opportunity to get rational laws enacted now was the time."

But at nearly the last minute a new bill appeared and cleared the Legislature just before its adjournment. It created a Public Domain Commission - the forerunner of today's Department of Natural Resources - that would have "power and jurisdiction" over all public lands and forest reserves, and interests including stream protection and control, forest fire protection and other matters previously under the autonomous commissioner of the land office, Auditor General, and Game, Fish and Forestry Warden. The Commission was charged with creating a minimum reserve of 200,000 acres.

Although Garfield did not believe it at the time, his work on the Forestry Commission and lobbying of the Legislature had produced a major shift in management of northern lands that would provide the base for a rebirth of the forests. Today, the seeds they planted have sprouted, giving Michigan 3.9 million acres of state forestland.


This month's pictures are of Samuel, and his son Charles, of the above story.


                     Samuel M. Garfield                                     Charles W. Garfield
                           1816 - 1876                                                   1848 - 1934

Readers: To keep this newsletter going, month after month, I need family stories,  family
history, family trees and picures. Thanks, Dick Garfield.