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Among my father, Keith’s possessions, was a postcard picture of a house with some writing on the backside.

Amarillia's House in 1911

Amarillia’s House in 1911

Image610

The writing on the backside of the postcard reads:

“Dear Papa:  I hope you are well. We are all well. Will you please send me or bring me my Rubber Raincoat, Lovingly Vivian.  Addressed to M. R.S. McDonald International Falls, Minn.”

It was about this time in Pine River, in 1904, that J.G. Dawes had the house built.  Now I cannot verify that he was responsible for actively building the house but he seemed to think so years later when he commented about it in an affidavit for another attempt of Amarilla to secure George’s Civil War pension.

This house still stands in Pine River and is lovingly cared for by a local family.

 

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Amarilla and J.G. gave lots 21 and 22 in Block 12 to the Methodist Episcopal Church of Pine River for $1.00 in September of 1902.  Amarilla was to bequeath a lot more to the town of Pine River.

Mrs. Ammarrila Dawes & husband, to The Methodist Episcopal Church of Pine River, filed 10 October 1902 at 9 am. This indenture made this 11th day of September, 1902 between Mrs. Ammarilla Dawes & J.G. Dawes of the County of Cass and State of Minnesota parties of the first part and The Methodist Episcopal Church of Pine River of the County of Cass and State of Minnesota party of the 2nd part Witnesseth that the said parties of the first part in consideration of the sume of one dollar to them in hand paid by the parties of the 2nd part….Lots numbered twenty one (21) and twenty two (22) in Block twelve (12) in the Village of Pine River, according to the original plat on file with the Register of Deeds in and for said county and state….signed by Ammarilla Dawes and J.G. Dawes and witnessed by Hans P. Hanson and Wyman H. Davis the notary public witnessed their free act and deed.

Source:  Cass County Register of Deeds, Cass County Courthouse, Walker, Minnesota, Book W, pg. 407, 11 September, 1901.

Apparently, Amarilla and J.G., were involved in the founding of this church for there appears an Article of Incorporation which was filed for record September 23, 1902.  Although they are not listed as trustees it is evident that they assisted with the process by the giving of the lots of land to the church.

Article of Incorporation Methodist Episcopal Church

Article of Incorporation Methodist Episcopal Church

Know all men by these presents, that we, Robert Forbes, the presiding officer, and Samuel J. Parish, the Secretary, of a Quarterly Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church, which was duly called, held and conducted on Monday September 1, 1902, in the school house of Pine River, County of Cass, State of Minnesota, according to the discipline and usage of the Methodist Episcopal Church and statues in such case and provided, do hereby certify that at the said Quarterly Conference the following named persons to wit: Stephen Jarvis, Frank L. White, Cramer H. Mitchell, Manly T. White and Heber S. Gilbert were duly elected trustees of The Methodist Episcopal Church of Pine River in the County of Cass, State of Minnesota, a religious Corporation said corporation to be known as The Methodist Episcopal Church of Pine River which corporate name was then and there assumed by said Trustees.  Given under our hands and seals this 1st day of September, 1902.  In the Presence of George O. Parrish and S.P. Hanson.  Signed by Robert Forbes, President and Samuel L. Parish, Secretary. Signed by S. P. Hansen, Justice of the Peace Cass County, MN

The above was found in the clerk books after the deed for $1.00 mentioned above.

The instrument continues with an affidavit of the two men doing this of their own free act and deed followed with an affidavit certifying that Mrs. Amarilla Dawes was the same person as Mrs. G.A. Barclay, dated the 8th day of September 1902.

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The death of her father must have been a great shock to my grandmother Grace.  She was only a little over 16 years old at the time of his murder.  I wonder what she might have been thinking.  I have wondered what the news of her father’s death would be like for her.  Things had been tense between them because of Hank Taylor’s interest and then her marriage to my grandfather R.S. McDonald.  George had not been happy and told her so.

Here is a possible scenario:

            R.S. entered the hotel room.  Grace was just finishing tucking her hair into place.  She turned to greet him and stopped short.  R.S. looked at her intently.  “What’s wrong?” she said.  Ronald Sandfield McDonald searched carefully for the words that would tell his lovely new wife of the tragedy that had occurred.  “Well, Mr. McDonald, what on earth is wrong.” She demanded.  R.S. could see no other way but to say the words.  “Your father has been shot.”  Grace looked at him and blinked standing there with a puzzled look at her face.  “Papa, shot? Is he all right?”  R.S. took a deep breath and said:  “No, I am afraid to tell you this, but he died very quickly and suffered little.”  Grace began to sway and R.S. rushed to catch her and gently helped her to the bed.  “This can’t be. Are you sure?”  Grace said.  “Yes, here is the telegram that came just now.”  He handed it to her.  Grace took it into her hands and read it slowly and carefully.  It was from her mother, Amarilla and it asked her to come home immediately.  She held it tightly in her hand and the room was filled with silence. R.S. sat next to her gently comforting her. The last several months since their marriage had been hard but this was totally unexpected and unbelievable. R.S. was the first to break the silence and said “I have made arrangements to get you to Pine River as quickly as possible.  He rose from the bed and went to her suitcase and started packing her things.  Grace sat quietly on the bed, reading the telegram again and again.  Clutching it in her hand.  “Papa, dead?”

            Grace and R.S. said their goodbyes at the Cloquet train station.  “I have some business to finish up and will be going off to the camp.  I will come down to Pine River in a couple of days and be with you.  I am so sorry, Grace.  I wish I could be with you now but Backus has me running.”  Grace smiled gently at her husband. His job as Superintendent for Backus was not an easy one.  Grasping the railing she climbed abroad the train. Feeling a tug at his heart, R.S. watched the train starting its journey.  Leaving her behind was always hard but this was worse.  He turned on his heels and dashed up the street.

            Grace somehow found a seat on the train next to the window.  The train began to pick up speed.  Can’t this train go faster, she thought.  Wanting to get home and find out what had really happened to her father and yet on the other hand a tremendous dread of what was to come engulfed her.  Papa, dead……no it can’t be.  He was just yelling at Yllander a few weeks ago.  Papa always yelled! …

Written by her granddaughter in 2005.  My grandmother had her written compilation “Words of Wasted Moment.” I hope I have done her proud to write this scenario.  See the posted dated September 19, 2013 “1898: Sweet Sixteen – Grace Barclay is growing up. “

How Grace managed to get from Cloquet, Minnesota to Pine River by November 2, 1898 for the Coroner’s Inquest on the death of her father George, is only speculation on my part.  I am convinced she used the railroads to do it. Getting around as a passenger in Minnesota had not been easy but progress was being made by 1898.  She either went to St. Paul and headed for Brainerd where she took the train to Pine River; however, if the railroad was in place from Duluth to Brainerd then she could have gone to Duluth from Cloquet and transferred to get into Brainerd and then headed north to Pine River. Fun to speculate on her route.

The Historical Maps website has a railroad map for Minnesota dated 1900.  Grace was no stranger to traveling the trains.  She had been riding them for years going to school in St. Paul and traveling with her parents.

http://alabamamaps.ua.edu/historicalmaps/us_states/minnesota/index2_1891-1900.htm

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The organization of Cass County and the establishment of Walker as the county seat was taking place but at the same time George Barclay was also involved with business, local events, and family happenings.  I return to the gossip columns in the newspaper and learn that Grace and Amarilla were both mentioned as well.

January 2, 1897: “Mr. Barclay made a flying trip to Brainerd and returned with his wife and daughter.  The later came up to spend vacation.” Grace was sixteen years old at this time.

“Mr. Barclay is still buying ties and is very busy, but his health is not good, as he is lame in his left shoulder. “

January 2, 1897 George is on the move.

January 2, 1897 George is on the move.

Source:  Local News – Pine River, The Cass County Pioneer Newspaper, 1/2/1897 to 6/2/1898,  January 2, 1897

July 1: “Geo Barclay has been down to Minneapolis ever since the 14th of this month. He was down on a lawsuit, which is now over. He returned on the 28th.”

“Andrew Whitesides, Mrs. Mickleson, Phil Reeler, Billy Pickler and The Moose were all down to the city as witnesses for Mr. Barclay.  Miss Barclay was down also.  She returned last Monday.”

“Mrs. Barclay is not feeling very well, but she is still working.”

Mr. Barclay and party including his daughter stopped in Minneapolis about a week.  Miss Barclay took down a couple of her father’s witnesses.”

Source:  Local News-Pine River, July 1, 1897, Thurs, Cass County Pioneer Newspaper. 1/1/1897-6/2/1898.

July 15: “Mr. George Barclay was down to Brainerd Saturday last and reports the washouts as bad.”

Source:  Cass County Pioneer, Jan. 2, 1897 to Jan 2, 1898 – July 15, 1897 Front page, 3rd column at the top. 

Note:  I do not know what lawsuit the gossip column was referring to? I am a bit curious but have not had time to research it.  It would require looking at court documents and that could get tricky depending on which court it was in, state, federal or county? The fact that my grandmother Grace was involved is very intriguing.  If I was to speculate it might have had something to do with the railroad or his past partner?

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George, Amarilla and their daughter Grace are featured in the 1895 census for Minnesota.  The 1880 U.S. Federal Census was rather vague and the 1885 spelled names wrong so this 1895 census was the only one that showed them together as a family.  I have posted about George the census in past posts.

A portion of that 1895 Minnesota State Census for Pine River

A portion of that 1895 Minnesota State Census for Pine River

Here is the 1895 Minnesota census:

Line 13, Barclay Geo. A, age 51, born in Conn., occupation [Lumberman], 12, sold, no, no, no. Barclay, Ammarilla, 37 years born in Iowa. Barclay, Grace A., 13 years born in Minn. 

 Source:  Geo. Barclay Family, 1895 Minnesota State Census, Twp. 137 Range 29W, Cass Co., Minnesota, Schedule 13 pg. 1,  FHL #0565765.  

When I went to source this census, I had a bit of a fright because the actual page looks like Twp. 127 rather than Twp. 137.  I therefore went to Family Search and double checked the film number to make sure I was not wrong.  I am happy to report that I am now correct with both FHL and Ancestry.   When I first started doing genealogy I was not very good at sourcing so a lot of the older research needs updating.  I do remember looking at the film for this particular census and probably doing that research at the Minnesota Historical Society at that time using film.

George’s brother Alexander Barclay was living in Dakota County.  Let’s see what was happening with Alex

6th line down: Barklay, Alexander A. 52 years, Male, White, born Conn. 40 years in area, 4 years?, farmer, 12, sold, yes, yes, yes.

Below him is Giles, Fannie B. 73 years old, female, white, born Mass, housekeepr, 12, no, no, no.

Source:  1895 Minnesota State Census, page 3, Lakeville Twp., Dakota Co., Minnesota, P.O. Farmington.

His father John Barclay was still living in Scott County with his wife Ellen/Helen and son Charlie

Family #54:  Barclay, John, age 94, male, white, born in Scotland, Resident of state 45 years, 45 years in enumeration district, occupation none, mother and father both of foreign birth.  Barclay, Ellen, age 65, female, white, born in Norway, both parents of foreign birth.  Barclay Charlie, age 35, male, white, born in Minnesota.  In state and enumeration district 35 years, a farmer, employed 12 mos of the year.  Both parents of foreign birth.

Source: 1895 Minnesota State Census, Eagle Creek, Scott Co., Minnesota, pg. 2, schedule #5, enumerated on 10 June 1895, FHL#565810.

This will be the last census that George (died 1898), Alexander (died 1905)  and John Barclay (died 1897) all appear in.  Even though Alexander lives till 1905 I have not been able to find him in the 1900 census nor the Minnesota state census of 1905.

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1885 Minnesota State Census

Pine River in 1885 was not very big!  According to the Minnesota State Census for 1885 there were 29 total whites with 19 males and 10 females. 

6th line down No. 22, Postoffice Brainerd, MN; G. [_] Barclay 45 years, white, born in Maine, parents were not of foreign birth “no”. Under G. Barclay was the name Annetta Barclay, age 38, born in Maine, parents not of foreign birth. Written between the above two persons -[Annetta Barclay] age 3, born in Minnesota.

Source:  1885 Minnesota State Census, FHL#565733, #377, pg. 22, Township 136, Cass County. 

I find this entry in this state census very frustrating.  I have so little on my grandmother Grace’s origins.  Perhaps Amarilla sounds like “Annetta.”  The only one that seems to be recognizable is George.  The next point is the reference to Maine as their origin? My focus has been on Connecticut for George and his siblings.  For Amarilla it has been Iowa.  This is the reason that it has been very difficult to figure out where George came from.  His age of 45 places the year of birth at 1840 which is four years earlier than I have from other sources.  

Some of the other surnames on the page with George are:  Woodward, [Kuro or Thuro], Ramport, Fairbanks, Asley, Hunsinger, Dusett, Browne, Morrison, Bannon, Sullivan, and Tallaque/Tallaquais/Gallaquois. (Very hard to read.)

The inhabitants of Pine River in 1885 came from Pennsylvania, Ohio, Minnesota, Maine?, Vermont, Canada, Wisconsin, and Germany.

Many sources state that Amarilla was the only white woman in the Pine River area for years.  According to this 1885 census there were other adult women living near her family:  Sarah Woodman was 34 and white, Ethel Kuro [50] and white, Matilda Ashley 23 and white,  Amanda Tallaqua [37] and white, the rest of the women were young girls.

Note:  Ancestry.com, The Minnesota Historical Society in St. Paul and the Family History Library all have the Minnesota Territorial and State Census.   

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The partition deed of John and Mary Keller’s land featured in the post dated October 8, 2011 “Partition Deed:  Morrow County, Ohio 1884,” connects Amarilla to the Keller family. 

To understand Amarilla you have to understand that she was part of a very large family, actually two, as well as extended families of Keller and Spracklin.  Her father Daniel D. Spracklin married twice as I have indicated in past posts.  So Amarilla had full and half siblings.  

Daniel marries Elizabeth 1852

Daniel’s married first to Elizabeth Keller and they married in Morrow County, Ohio on the 28 December 1852 (another source as their marriage 1 Jan 1853).

By 1856 they had migrated to Benton County, Iowa and settled there.  Sadly Elizabeth Keller died the 10th of March 1859 just months after she gave birth to Amarilla.  Amarilla never knew her mother having been born the 18th of November 1858.  She was just a baby!  This marks the first tragedy that my great-grandmother Amarilla experiences in her life. 

Elizabeth, Oliver and Mary's Tombstone, Titler Cemetery, Iowa

Let me describe Daniel and Elizabeth’s family of which they had four (4) children.  Only 2 survived to adulthood, Henry and Amarilla:

1.  Henry Franklin Spracklin b. 13 September 1853 probably in Toledo, Ohio as his parents began their journey to Iowa.   He married Elizabeth Downey 16 November 1875 in Keokuk County, Iowa.  He died 22 June 1893 in Davenport, Iowa in a lumber mill accident leaving 9/11 children.  He was listed as a grantor in the partition deed along with his sister Amarilla Barkley.  It placed Henry in Muscatine County, Iowa in 1884. 

2.  Oliver Solomon Spracklin b. 18 October 1854 based on the U.S. census.  He was probably born in Iowa.  He died 10 September 1855. He is buried in Titler Cemetery northwest of Marengo, Iowa with his sister Mary and mother.

Oliver's separate stone!

3.  Mary Ellen Spracklin born 17 August 1856 in Iowa and died 27 September 1861 in Iowa.  Mary is also buried in Titler Cemetery with her brother Oliver and mother Elizabeth. 

Mary's inscription on the main tombstone

4.  Amarilla Grace Spracklin was born 17 November 1858 in Benton Co., Iowa and died in Pine River, Cass County, Minnesota 10 August 1942 under the married name of Urton.  She is buried in the Evergreen Cemetery in Brainerd, Minnesota near her first husband George Angus Barclay. 

My Aunt Miriam had in her possession a letter written by Elizabeth on one side and on the other a letter written by Daniel dated January of 1858.  I will share that with you in the next post for it further connects Amarilla to the Keller family. 

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Sources

Ancestor Outline by Armindo Spracklin featured in the posted dated August 5, 2011 “Ancestor Outline by Armindo Spracklin,” on my other blog:  Solomon Goss of Fearing Township in Ohio.  This outline was given to me by my Aunt Miriam. Armindo was the wife of Charles Edward Spracklin, one of Amarilla’s 1/2 brothers.

Family History Notes of Miriam McDonald, grand-daughter of Amarilla Spracklin Barclay, approximately 8 pages.  There is personal information contained in these notes so I am carefully sharing them through this blog and other blogs.

Death Certificate of Amarilla Urton, #02159, Aug. 10, 1942, Pine River, Cass County, Minnesota.  , Minnesota State Department of Health, Records, Minnesota Historical Society, index online at the MHS. 

Cemetery Records of the Titler Cemetery originally by Mrs. Kaye Sanches of Des Moines, Iowa, retyped by Marion A. Gunderson, 2001, at the Iowa Genealogy Society Library. As you can see by the tombstone pictures above, the stones are up against a tree and not over the grave.  There where depressions near the stones in the soil that I almost stumbled into. 

Visit to the Titler Cemetery by the compiler in April of 2003 when photographs of the cemetery were taken. Marengo, Iowa.  See BJM’s Cemetery Discoveries blog posts starting with the date of July 17, 2010 were I feature the Titler photographs. 

http://bjmcemeterydiscoveries.blogspot.com/2010_07_01_archive.html

Census for the State of Iowa 1856, Vol. 48, Film#1021301, pg. 78-80 State Historical Society, Des Moines, Iowa.  Be careful the index of this 1856 census does not show Daniel for some reason?  Ancestry.com has the Iowa State Census.  Also featured in the July 1, 2011 post (see below).  Before Daniel and after him are Blacketers and Merrifields that are enumerated. 

1860 U.S. Federal Census was discussed in the post dated July 1, 2011 “Stepping Back In Time: Amarilla’s Life In Iowa Before George!” on this blog. 

Marriage Records, 1848-1951, Index 1848-1948 FHL#388779 Morrow Co., Ohio.  Vol. 1A, pg. 119 for Daniel and Elizabeth’s marriage FHL#388779.

Sources for Henry Spracklin and Amarilla will be detailed in future posts.

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There is a book titled: “Down the Mississippi” or “Down the Great River: Embracing An Account of the Discovery of the Mississippi” by Captain Willard Glazier that gives an interesting account of the ranch of George Barclay about 1881.

Headwaters of the Mississippi River - Lake Itasca

In July 2001, I followed up further at the MHS on the reference to Captain Glazier and “Down the Mississippi, (page 35).”  (#F354.655 1841-1905)    This book is not very large about 5 inches by 4 in size and it is bound in a leather cover and it is becoming quite fragile. 

In the table of contents under Chapter II “Through the Chippewa Country” he lists George Barclay …it reads:  “…Ride to Pine River.–Huge Logs and Boulders.–George Barclay.–Characteristics of Indians…….etc.”

Copies were made of pages 35, 36 and 37.  It does not give an exact date.  It does not mention Mrs. Barclay or any children just describes the ranch and accommodations.  The Table of Contents features a really good description of the chapters. 

Page 35-37: 

“After dinner we resumed our journey, with Pine River as the evening destination.  Sometimes in the road, sometimes out of it; now driving along the shore of a lake, and again over huge logs and boulders, it was voted that our ride to Pine River was unlike anything we had ever elsewhere experienced.  The ranch of George Barclay, the only white habitation between Gull Lake and Leech Lake, was reached at five o’clock in the evening.  Here we were most agreeably surprised to find very good accommodations for both man and beast.  Barclay is a decided favorite with the Indians, and his prosperity in this isolated corner of Minnesota is largely due to his friendly relations with them.  He is always supplied with guns, knives, beads, tobacco, and such other goods as are in demand by his dusky neighbors for which he receives in exchange furs, game, snake-root and such other products of the forest as find a ready market at Brainerd or Saint Paul.  Much valuable information was obtained at Pine River concerning our route to Leech Lake and beyond, the peculiar traits and characteristics of the Indians whom we were likely to encounter, and those persons at the Agency who could be of most service to us.  An excellent breakfast on the following morning, with the prospect of reaching Leech Lake, put my little party in the most exuberant spirits for the day……”

Page 148

“…several of my hearers showed their interest by coming large distances to the lecture, and one, George Barclay, a pioneer, told me he had brought his family thirty-seven miles with an ox-team to hear what I had to say about the old explorers.”  Private home in Brainerd, Minnesota August Eighteenth”

In trying to pin down the date or approximate time that Capt. Glazier visited G. Barclay, I found on page. 31 that Glazier headed for Brainerd on July 7, 1881.  He has included his description of George’s ranch in Chapter II – Through the Chippewa Country.  They headed for what is called the Government Road on July 12th to Leech Lake.  He stopped at Reuben Gray’s house who had a hotel/pioneer half-way house between Brainerd and Leech Lake at Gull Lake.  

The interesting thing is that there is no mention of the death of baby George just a little before the visit by Capt. Glazier?

This book is currently available for viewing at Google Books and is well worth reading.

Note:  The photograph above was taken at the headwaters site in the park at Lake Itasca.  They had to clean up the lake from the logging and fix this area with cement so that is why it looks so orderly.  Here is a link to the State Park website:  http://www.dnr.state.mn.us/state_parks/itasca/index.html  I think I saw a red fox in the trees when we were there.

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It was a happy day in Pine River the 10th of January 1880 when George and Amarilla’s son George Alexander Barclay as born. 

On my second trip to Minnesota in July of 2001, I found the actual records of George Alexander’s birth that are mentioned in the “Logsleds…” book.  I did not find the actual quote from Rev. Benjamin Whipple that they feature in the book about the baptism of young George. I did find parish records recognizing the birth of the baby boy.   The collection of the Whipple papers at the Minnesota Historical Society is large and complicated and I have tried at least twice to figure it out. 

Source: “21, baptised George Alexander sone of  Geo A. & Amanda Barclay born 10 January 1880 Sponsors parents, Rev. I.A. Gilfillan at 1/2 ____ house.” (Very difficult to read) (Vol. 10 ,P1035, Box 43 Manuscripts, P.E. Church, Diocese of Minn. Vol 8-16 MHS). 

Source:  Whipple Register of Baptisms, Marriages and Deaths 1859-1895 1 Vol., #142.F.15.3B, Minnesota Historical Society.

Baptisms: August 21, 1880, Pine River, George Alexander Barclay, Parents:  George A. & Ammanda Barclay, Sponsors and witnesses:  Parents and Rev. I.A. Gilfillan.  (Register of Baptisms, Marriages – Whipple Records 142.F.15.3B 1859-1895 1 Vol. – MHS) 

On page 106 first column there is an interesting account of the baptism of baby George in the Logsleds to Snowmobiles book.  This account was taken from The Whipple papers at the Minnesota Historical Society.  

It reads:  “Time evening. Log hotel in the woods, kept by a frontier man and his wife. She is eight miles from the nearest white woman, and between her and Brainerd, 36 miles distant, are just two of her sex. They are happily and contented all alone in the woods with the little infant son God has given them. The Bishop assembles all hands in the dining room and proceeds to baptize the boy. “Name this child,” says the Bishop. “George Alexander,” says the sponsor, the name of the father. “Stop,” says the exulting frontiersman. “George Alexander Barclay,” giving his own name in full. He wished all present and absent to understand that the boy was a Barclay.”

Based on what I have determined, I think it was the Rev. Gilfillan who did the baptism and the journal is housed in the Whipple papers which is a collection of the Rev. Whipple’s. 

There seems to be a little confusion regarding the actions of the father.  The son was named “George Alexander” while the father was “George Angus.”  Did George Angus Barclay name is son after his brother Alexander?

Based on the information from the 1880 census we know that there weren’t that many people in Pine River in 1880 so George and Amarilla were probably far from religious gatherings so they either took this as an opportunity to have their child baptised.  The other possibility is that George was not Catholic.  We see that there are two instances in which George and Amarilla interact with the Episcopal faith, 1) their marriage, 2) the baptism of their child. 

Both Rev. Whipple and Gilfillan are very extraordinary men and no matter which of the two men it was that stopped at the Barclay Ranch is was a major event. 

For Rev. Whipple:  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Henry_Benjamin_Whipple

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Great grandfather made a critical decision to move his trading post up to the present area of Pine River, Minnesota.

Two years after building his post on the South Branch of the Pine River, George Barclay apparently decided to move and expand his activities.  He chose a site on higher, more open ground located next to land currently occupied by the Durkee Manufacturing Company.   (Logsleds to Snowmobiles, pg. 104, published 1973).

My Aunt Miriam sent this to me as part of her notes about George’s land purchases (1986).  Just click on the photo and it will open up so you can read it.  She mentions three patents and one deed. 

George's Land - Miriam's Notes

The Logsleds and Snowmobiles book published in 1973 by the town of Pine River for the Bicentennial gives these descriptions of the land holdings on page 105 at the bottom of the 1st column and top of the 2nd. 

In 1876, he moved his establishment to higher ground and started purchasing land at the intersection of four townships:  137N-29W (Wilson), 137N-30W (Walden), 138N-29W (Barclay), and 138N-30W (Pine River).  From this site grew the village.  Appropriately, this largest settlement along the river eventually took the name of the river and became “Pine River.” (Logsleds to Snowmobiles, page 1.) 

…Barclay’s land purchases may have been formally registered as early as 1875 and definitely by 1876; however, the abstract indicates that the first purchase of the NW1/4 of the NW1/4 of Section 6, Township 137, Range 29 (Wilson Township) was not recorded as purchased until July 20, 1878, and the patent not received from the federal government until 1879.  On May 15, 1883, he purchased according to record the NE1/4 of the NW1/4 of Section 6, Township 137, Range 29, from the federal government.  (Logsleds to Snowmobiles, page 105).

The final 80 acre purchase of the SE1/4 and the SW1/4 (Lot 7) of the SW1/4 of Section 31, Township 138, Range 29 (Barclay Township) was bought on June 7, 1883 from the Northern Pacific Railway Company for $329.36.  (Logsleds to Snowmobiles, page 105).

I was doing my usual poking around the internet and found that Cass County government has the 2009 Land Atlas & Plat Book for Cass County, Minnesota up for searching.  I own the 2005 published version.  Here is that link:  http://www.co.cass.mn.us/platbook/platbook_web.html  You can click on various townships and cities in Cass County and pull up great maps in today’s world. 

The online version does not seem to have the “Information About Land Descriptions” that appears on pages 8 – 10 in the 2005 published version?  It is very important to understand how to read the land descriptions.  The National Atlas has this link to an explanation of the public land survey system:  http://www.nationalatlas.gov/articles/boundaries/a_plss.html  It might help to make the above information make more sense.

I also stumbled on the Heritage Group North website and discovered they were posting excerpts from the Logsleds to Snowmobiles book.  I also noticed that they have referenced this blog! So in the spirit of sharing here is their link along with my thank you:  http://www.pineriverhistory.org/5.html.

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