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History of Alamo Township, MI.
FROM History of Kalamazoo County, Michigan
With Illistrations and Biographical Sketches
of its Men and Pioneers.
Everts & Abbott., Philadelphia 1880
Press of J. B. Lippincott & Co., Philadelphia.


Geography. — The township of Alamo. is designated as township 1 south, of range 12 west, and is bounded on the north by Allegan County, south by the township of Oshtemo, east by the township of Cooper, and west by Van Buren County, the first survey having been made by Robert Clark, Jr., in 1830. It lies in the extreme northwest corner of Kalamazoo County, and, being by its geographical position closely allied to two 0f the neighboring counties, many of its early associations and reminiscences are interwoven with the pioneer history of these counties. Much of the land in the township was originally entered by parties for purposes of speculation, and this fact greatly retarded its growth, as it also postponed the advent of permanent settlers.

Lakes and Water- Courses.—The township cannot boast bodies of water of any considerable size, the largest being the Twin Lakes, only a portion of which lies in Alamo, in the southeast corner, the remainder being in the township of Cooper. Near the centre on section 22 is a lake of some importance, which has at different times had various christenings, but is familiar to the residents as “Tarbell” Lake. There is also a small lake on section 9, and another on section 5, known as Upper Lake.

Pine Creek, which is the most considerable water-course in the township, rises in a small lake on section 21, flows southwest until it reaches section 30, then flows north, and empties into the Kalamazoo River. It has from time to time furnished water-power for several mills.

Soil.—The soil of the township is sandy, with a mixture of clay. The land generally produces fair crops, and amply repays the toil of the husbandman.

Through the township diagonally from northeast to southwest runs a swamp, which is unusually prolific in a growth of elm and ash. Some portions of it have been drained, but it still remains mostly unreclaimed. The township is generally level and well timbered with oak, beech, maple, black ash, elm, and black walnut, oak being especially abundant.


The early roads in the township were regular in their course, and, as a rule, followed section lines, comparatively few of the first highways projected by the commissioners running diagonally across the country. The earliest road in the township, so far as can be ascertained, was laid out by the commissioners of Kalamazoo township, and followed the section line, beginning at the north line of the township, and running south near the west line between sections 5 and 6, 7 and 8, 17 and 18, 19 and 20, 29 and 30, 31 and 32, and terminating at the south line of the township. Another very early highway was known as the Paw Paw road, which ran from Paw Paw, in Van Buren County, to Otsego, in Allegan County, following the Indian trail. This road was in use before the one already described, but not surveyed and improved at so early a date. It entered the southwest corner of Alamo, followed an angular course to the northwest corner of section 26, from thence a northeasterly direction to the south line of section 1, from whence it diverged in a northwesterly course to Otsego.

Other roads were laid out as the progress of civilization made them necessary, most of them following section lines. The ones described were, however, the only ones in use during the early days of the township.


The following entries of land were originally made within the boundaries of the township of Alamo:

<<Link to list of landowners.>>


Reminiscenees.-The earliest settler in the township, so far as can be determined, was William Finch, who founded what is known as the Finch Settlement, in the extreme northeast portion of the township, on section 1. Mr. Finch came in the spring of 1835 from Niagara Co., N. Y., and the-following fall a man named Hutchinson was discovered living in the northwest corner of the township. The date of his coming was not ascertained, but it was generally believed that it was subsequent to the arrival of the Niagara County pioneers. With Mr. Finch came his five sons-in-law,-Thomas Chamberlain, Solomon Case, James Kendall. Jerome Thrasher, and Henry Swarthout,-with their families. Mr. Finch entered 6 lots of land, embraceing 80 acres each, a portion of which was in the township of Cooper, and, reserving 160 acres as a homestead, divided the remainder among his daughters. They found the land on their arrival altogether unimproved, and devoted their energies immediately to the clearing of a sufficient portion upon which to erect comfortable habitations. The wants of Mr. Finch, who was in feeble health, were first provided for, the remainder of the company uniting to erect a comfortable shanty for him. He did not, however, long survive the trying ordeal of the pioneer. His advent occurred in May, 1835, and four months later his children were summoned to his burial. His was the first death that occurred in the township.

Thomas Chamberlain, two days after the arrival of the pioneer band, became very ill. There were no conveniences at hand, and not even a temporary shelter could be made available, as time had not permitted even the erection of a rude shanty. His wife made as comfortable a bed as was possible upon the ground, first spreading beneath it green boughs, and placing over it the wagon-top for shelter. Here for three weeks he lay, with no ministrations save those of a devoted wife, who was both nurse and physician. About him were the family, who availed themselves of such temporary protection an could be afforded by tents constructed of boughs. Finally, upon hearing that a physician was procurable in Otsego township, Dr. Coates, of that place, was summoned to the bedside of the patient, and attended him during the remainder of his illness, and was also called later to the bedside of Mr. Finch. He was the first physician who practiced in Alamo.

This little colony no sooner became permanent than their efforts were directed towards the means for securing the preaching of the word of God in their midst. Services were held as early as 1835 at the log houses of the settlers, the first preacher being Rev. Mr. Woodbury, of Kalamazoo, who visited them occasionally. Rev. Mr. Williams, of Indiana, a circuit preacher, followed, him, and held service for several months. Rev. Mr. Smith, 'a clergyman of the Congregational Church, held religious services in the first school-house, and continued them for two years. He was followed by Rev. Mr. Shepard. Rev. Mr. Gage, a circuit preacher, also, ministered to the flock, and Rev. Mr. Brigham, a Baptist, and Elder Knappen were among the occasional preachers.

Jnlius Hackley came from the old county of Livingston, in New York, which has contributed so largely to the growth and enterprise of Michigan, in 1835, and made Kalamazoo County his future home. In company with him was William Churchill, of Genesee Co., N. Y. They beard on their arrival favorable accounts of the land in the township of Alamo, and started on a prospecting tour. On arriving at Otsego they separated, Mr. Hackley coming to this township, and Mr. Churchill continuing his progress in Allegan County. Mr. Hackley, after a careful examination of the ground, purchased 160 acres on section 17. There was not a single settler in the immediate neighborhood at the time. His friend Churchill had meanwhile found land in Allegan which pleased him, but, having insufficient means to complete the purchase, Mr. Backley advanced $50 and took half of the 80 acres he entered, disposing of it again in 1841.

Not intending to locate at once in Michigan, he returned to New York State, and came again in 1836 on a tour of speculation, and devoted his time principally to examining land. In 1837 he made the tavern of Moses Austin, in Pavilion township, his headquarters, making purchases of land, and at intervals laboring in the county as occasion offered. At this time Mr. Hackley was probably the largest landed proprietor in the township, owning at one time 22 80-acre lots. He soon after returned to his former home, took to himself a wife, and they became residents in the fall of 1837, making their bridal tour with an ox-team and bringing their household goods with them. On their arrival Mahion Everitt's log house afforded them a hospitable home until a shanty was erected on their land, to which they removed at the expiration of four weeks. Their nearest neighbor at this time was a man named Smith, who, with his family, had penetrated the forest and erected a hovel, in which he dwelt with his family while he pursued the life of a hunter. Squire Miles resided four miles north, in Allegan County, and built the sawmill known as the Miles Mill. Daniel Ball was their nearest neighbor on the eastern side. On the west, for some time, there was no indication of active life, but in the following spring, while Mrs. Hackley was pursuing her household avocations, she heard the crowing of a cock, which indicated the presence of settlers, whom they afterwards found to be in the adjoining county.

Soon after the advent of Mr. Hackley came a family named Howard, for the purpose of making sugar and shingles. They lived very nearly on the place now occupied by Lucian Pickard, and remained but four months, returning each succeeding year.

Mr. Hackley's temperance sentiments, which were firmly established, met with a severe test. On the occasion of raisings, which previously occurred, the custom of offering liquor had met with a general assent throughout the township. Mr. Hackley, having occasion to build a barn, determined to - have a temperance raising. This was contrary to all precedent and a bold innovation, and he was assured would result in total failure to the enterprise. He nevertheless persisted, and with the aid of his effiaient wife, who heartily sympathized with his temperance views, a very tempting collation was spread, and all the good things which were procurable, and could gratify the palate, were placed upon the board. Forty-eight neighbors were present,
the frame of the new barn speedily ascended, and all pronounced the good cheer of the hostess not only satisfactory, but excellent.

Mr. Hackley still maintains his temperance principles, and not even sweet cider has ever touched the lips of one of his children.

Indians at this time were numerous, and at first caused no little consternation among the female pioneers, who were unaccustomed to the dusky forms and formidable weapons of the red men. One morning, when Mrs. Hackley was alone, five stalwart Indians appeared and demanded breakfast. She proceeded, in great fear, to prepare a meal for them, of which they partook quietly, and, after handing her twenty-five cents in silver each, departed. On another occasion she was frightened in the same manner, but, upon learning that her visitors before partaking of her repast knelt and offered thanks, she was no longer afraid. These Indians had been Christianized, and were members of the Selkrig mission, located in an adjoining county. One of the Indians of this mission purchased of Mrs. Hackley a piece of pork, which at the time he was unable to pay for. He made promises which inspired very little faith. Months after, however, as they were passing, after breaking camp in the neighborhood, one of the band was sent to liquidate the debt. This is another of the many instances which illustrate the integrity of the red man.

William Taylor entered, Jan. 12, 1837, 80 acres of land on section 27. He was nominated for first township clerk by Asa Rude. Not having been long in the township, and having met but a few of its residents, he was a comparative stranger to the voters, but was so cordially indorsed by Mr. Rude as to secure the election.

Alpheus Rude entered 80 acres on section 27, which his father, Asa Rude, subsequently occupied, the son entering fbr himself land on sections 23 and 24. The elder Rude was especially active in matters pertaining to the interests of the township, and filled many public offices.

W. S. Hargin located upon 80 acres, which he entered March 21, 1836, on section 28. He later settled upon land which was purchased of C. Pratt on section 29. Seth C. Whitlock was another one of the lioneers of 1835, who located 77 acres on section 23.

Mahion Everitt came to Alamo from Livingston Co., N. Y., in the fall of 1836, and entered 240 acres upon section 29. He drove with horses from Detroit over roads so impaired by recant rains that their progress was extremely slow, seven miles being the distance accomplished in a single day. The land was entered the year before the family became residents. His neighbor on the east was Asa Rude, who was three miles distant, while on the south was Charles H. Hurd, who was double that distance. He traveled nine miles to the west before reaching the land of Mr. Derosier, and five miles north was Myron Hutchinson.

Mr. Everitt's brother Nelson had come in the spring of the same year, and erected a shanty which afforded them shelter on their arrival. After becoming comfortably settled the winter approached, and Mr. Everitt constructed of such material as was procurable a sleigh, with which he did
much teaming for his neighbors, at much more reasonable rates, however, than those extorted from him on his arrival in the county, when he was obliged to pay $90 for a single load transported from Detroit to Alamo.

The third winter after his arrival he was forced by the scarcity of flour to go abroad for a supply. After traveling thirty miles to Little Prairie Ronde, he made an effort to obtain the needed article, but was unsuccessful. From there he proceeded fifteen miles farther to La Grange Prairie, and met no better success, and finally his journey ended at Whitmanville, Cass Co., where he found a mill and an abundant store. On his return he found that the family had subsisted for two days upon potatoes brought them by Mr. Howard, of Genesce Prairie, who, on visiting the neighborhood in search of land, had learned their destitute condition and brought them a supply of food, which he obtained on his return home.

Mr. Everitt's farm was entirely surrounded by land purchased by parties for purposes of speculation, which prevented improvements in the neighborhood and retarded greatly the progress of the school interests. There was no school in the immediate vicinity of his residence, and his little daughter was obliged to make a pilgrimage of two miles daily to the nearest school-house. These facts influenced him to change his residence to Kalamazoo, where he now resides.

An incident occurred in 1839 which caused no little consternation in his family. A well had been dug on his land, which did not in all respects prove satisfactory, and Mr. Everitt determined to improve it. It was necessary to descend into the well to accomplish this, which he did. The walls were not securely laid, and after he had fairly begun his work they gave way and slowly enveloped him. Gradually the debris accumulated around him, until it reached his head, and the prospect of rescue for a brief time seemed doubtful. Fortunately, his man appeared upon the scene in time to lend his aid, and by taking his arms, which Mr. Everitt had sufficient forethought to lift above his head, be was rescued from what seemed certain death. Mrs. Hannah Everitt, mother of Mahlon, died in 1839. Her death was among the earliest in the township.

Thomas G. Carpenter was a former resident of Orleans Co., N. Y., and emigrated to Michigan in May, 1837, purchasing 80 acres on section 12, upon which he still resides. He brought with him three horses, and reached his destiuation without meeting any serious obstacles, but met with more formidable difficulties after their arrival. Mr. Carpenter was obliged to exert himself to provide for the wants of his family, and walked ten miles to Kalamazoo each morning to his daily labor, and returned at night with his day's earnings upon his back to supply their needs. For three weeks before the harvest they were without bread, subsisting principally upon potatoes and meat. For nine days he worked upon the plains, receiving as compensation a bushel of potatoes a day. Animals of all kinds peculiar to the country were abundant, and wolves were especially obtrusive, frequently appearing at the door and greeting the family with their unearthly howls. Notwithstanding all these hardships, Mr. and Mrs. Carpenter are both alive and comparatively vigorous, the former being now in his eighty-fifth year.

Uriah L. James came in 1837, and worked a farm on section 12 on shares. His son John later purchased 140 acres, embracing this farm, and now resides upon it.

James Taliman came from Geneva, N. Y., in 1837, and first became a resident of Washtenaw County. In 1849, being favorably impressed with the land in Alamo, he removed thither, with his four sons, Aaron, Easton, J. Vedder, and Henry A., - and purchased of one Godfrey 560 acres on sections 20 and 21. He employed a man to break up 30 acres before he moved upon the land. The family, on their arrival, received a hospitable welcome to the house of Daniel Ball, on section 14, now occupied by Myron Parks, where they remained for six weeks, until a comparatively comfortable shanty was erected, after which a more spacious log house was built. The sons remained at home, and assisted the father on the homestead until they attained their majority, when each was given a tract of land. Aaron received 80 acres on section 20; Easton, 80 acres on section 21; J. Vedder, 80 on section 20; and Henry A. was given the tract formerly owned by Aaron, he having removed to the homestead farm. The land was entirely inclosed on the arrival of the Tallman family, deer and wolves being the chief inhabitants of the forest. Indians were numerous, who wandered through the country hunting and fishing, and bartering venison, deer-skins, and fish for flour, pork, and potatoes, a loaf of wheat-bread being their sperial delight. A dog owned by Mr. Tailman was their aversion, and inspired them with such terror as to make a circuit through the fields preferable to the chances of an encounter with him.

Daniel Ball has been already mentioned as living upon section 14, where he settled in 1837. The fathily consisted of four bachelor brothers, for whom the mother presided in the culinary department. They were former residents of Chautauqua Co., N. Y.

John, David, and Timothy Johnson came in 1836, and located on section 2.

Ephraim Case entered, May 20, 1836, 132 acres on section 4, and became a permanent resident, as did also E. Butterfield, who chose section 9 for his home, upon which he located 240 acres in May, 1837, and speedily improved it.

C. M. Wheeler came to the township in 1838. and purchased land which he still owns. His father was one of the survivors of the Revolutionary war, and died in the township at the advanced age of eighty_nine years.

G. H. Seeley and A. S. Eaton each purchased 40 acres on section 11, in November, 1841, and Luther Follett entered, in the summer of 1835, 200 acres on section 12. He was the first tax collector in the township.

Tilly Sanford removed from Cattaraugus County in 1844, having located 120 acres on section 8. The land was purcased of Cyrus Giles, who probably bought it of William Churchill, who entered it from government. Mr. Sanford came to the township in 1839, and erected a shanty on the land he had purchased, but was compelled by ill-health to return to his former home after a residence of one year. During this brief period he, together with his sons, maintained a bachelor's establishment. The shanty they erected served later, with an addition, for a very comfortable residence, until 1852, when a spacious dwelling replaced it.

Many Indians visited the home of Mr. Sanford,-principally those belonging to the Slater mission, which had been established in Richland. Mrs. Sanford still survives, and resides upon the homestead, Mr. Sanford having died in

Henry and George Piper came to the township in 1841, the former purchasing 80 acres of Fortesque Crittenden, and the latter locating on section 16.

Charles W. Barber removed from Ontario Co., N. Y., in 1847, and purchased 80 acres on section 16, upon which he erected a very substantial dwelling. He has since resided upon this farm, and in connection with agricultural pursuits fills the position of station-master at the Alamo depot of the Michigan Central Railroad. Mr. Barber takes an active interest in public affairs, and has filled many important offices in the township.

Caleb Van Vranken came to Schoolcraft in 1846, and to Alamo in 1854. With him came five sons, three of whom now own farms within the township limits. Riley E. has 80 acres on section 15; Frank resides on the homestead, and Harmon C. has a farm on section 21.

The following is an alphabetical list of the non-resident tax-payers of the township of Alamo for the year 1838:

Aldrich, R.

Hine, G.

Alvord, D.

Holliday, J. C.

Buel, J.

Howard, R. H.

Bushnell, O.

Horton, J.

Baker, Charles C.

Harris, Ira.

Bronson, Philo.

Holmes, J. B.

Bradley, P.

Lee, A. H.

Buekley, L.

Lazaleer, W.

Beebe, O.

Moore, L. H.

Bowker, A.

May. A.

Barber, P.

Mallory, D.

Crane, Rozel.

Moore, G. B.

Cole, P.

Nixon, L.

Cole, S.

Owen, A.

Churchill, M. R.

Patterson, T.

Caddington, H.

Pratt, C.

Clark, S.

Potter, S. D.

Chandler, G. B.

Potter, S. G.

Crofford, D.

Robbins, S.

Campbell, William,

Ruckland, T.

Davenport, O.

Rude, A.

Doubleday, D. A.

Reed, G. M.

Done, II.

Reynolds, H.

Estabrook, E.

Reynolds, G. W.

Eddy, ---.

Ransom, D. C.

Foster, S. D.

Sheldon, R.

Francis, T. N.

Squier, E. R.

Foster, Samuel.

Smith, G.

French, E.

Smith, J. E.

Gregory, Milton R.

Sheldon, T. C.

Gregory, O. H.

Smith, William.

Hill, R. D.

Stone, E.

Howard, J. J.

Tomkins, E.

Hawkes, John.

Whitlock, O. M.

Higgins, H.

Wilcot, J.

Howard, John.

Ward, H.

Holland, P.

Ward, T.

Horner, J.






Butterfield, E.

Case, Josephue.

Ball, D. S.

Eastman, Horace.

Ball, S. and D.

Easton, Alexander.

Case, Solomon.

Everitts, M. and N.

Case, Ephraim.

Finch, W. R.

Coshun, John.

Finch, A. B.

Follett, Luther.

Rosey, Garrett.

Hutchins, Myron.

Rude, Asa.

Hackley, Julius.

Smead, O.

Hargin, W. S.

Seeley, Philo.

Hydorn, William P.

Taylor, William.

Johnson, Foster.

Turner, Jesse W.

Jeffers, John.

West, Nicholas.

Johnson, John.

Whitlock, Seth C.

Montague, Festus.

Whitlock, David.

Pierson, D. J.



Alamo was organized as a separate township in 1838. It had previously, since the formation of Cooper, constituted a part of that township. According to some accounts, the petitioners had chosen the name Bainbridge for their new township, but, there being already a township by that name in Berrien County, the name Alamo was selected, in honor of Col. David Crockett and his brave companions-in-arms who so heroically defended themselves at the famous castle of the Alamo, at San Antonio, in Texas, in 1836, and who were massacred to the last man by the Mexican soldiers under Gen. Santa Anna, upon the capture of the place.

There was evidently a great amount of sympathy then existing aniong the citizens of Kalamazoo County in behalf of the straggling Texans, and it expressed itself in bestowing several Texan names upon townships in the county.


There are no villages in Alamo, the point of most importance being the little hamlet of Alamo Centre, which is chiefly of consequence from the fact that it is the site of the churches of the township and is adjacent to the depot. Alamo Centre was first settled by John G. Tarbell, who early purchased land, but did not at once become a resident upon it. Not, however, desiring it to remain unimproved, he placed John Harkness upon it in 1839, intending it should be cleared by him and the soil cultivated. Two years later Mr. Tarbell came to visit his property, and during his presence there became involved in an unfortunate litigation with Harkness regarding the improvements he had made. In 1841, Mr. Tarbell removed to the land, and became a permanent resident. He erected a log house, removed his family thither, and at once manifested a lively interest in the growth and prosperity of the township. A post-office was early established at the centre, Mr. Tarbell being postmaster, with the office at his house. The present post-office is located at the store of T. J. Congdon, who is postmaster, and the only merchant in the place. The Kalamazoo and South Haven Railroad traverses the township. Its depot, which is a short distance south from Alamo Centre, has become a station of some consequence, as the point from which much of the produce of the township is shipped.


Methodist Episcopal-The first Methodist Episcopal Church had its origin in a class that was organized in a log house on the township line north of a tract called Jug Corners in 1842 by Rev. F. Gage. The members of this class were Thomas G. Carpenter and wife, F. Montague and wife, T. Johnson, J. Johnson, and others whose names are not recollected. Services were held at various points in the township, as convenience might dictate, the brick school-house at Alamo Centre, the school-house in the vicinity of Julius Hackley's residence, and that known as the Spaulding school-house having been the principal places of meeting. In the year 1867 the societies of the Methodist Episcopal and Presbyterian Churches united to build a house of worship, which was dedicated and opened for services in the spring of 1869. At the time of their union and removal to occupy the new edifice they numbered 50 members. Since that period the following pastors have officiated: Rev. T. J. Oongdon, Rev. William Cogshall, Rev. E. D. Young, Rev. C. T. Van Antwerp, Rev. J. S. Valentine, and Rev. E. H. Day, the present pastor. The present class-leaders are J. J. Spaulding and L. E. Blair. The stewards are William Oliver, R. E. Van Vranken, A. S. Eaton, L. E. Blair, and John Selkrig. The trustees are J. J. Spaulding, Joseph Veeley, R. E. Van Vranken, J. B. Shepherd, and Garret Van Arsdale. There are 75 names now on the list of membership, nearly all of whom are actively engaged in Sabbath-school work under the direction of J. J. Spaulding. From the time that the two societies formed a union harmony and peace have characterized all their deliberations.

Presbyterian.-The Presbyterian Church was organized, May 17, 1865, by Rev. Seward Osinga, acting pastor. The individuals who enrolled their names as its first members were James Tallman, Searles D. Barber, Charles W. Barber, Mrs. Agnes Barber, Samuel Love, Jane E.. Love, Mrs. Hannah Naregang, and Lydia Bacheldor. Charles W. Barber and Searles D. Barber were unanimously elected as the first elders, and a petition was forwarded to the Kalamazoo Presbytery to be taken under its care, which was granted. The first communion was held June 11, 1865, at Alamo Centre, in the school building, the society having no regular house of worship.

The society, in 1867, united with the Methodist Episcopal Church of North and West Alamo for the purpose of constructing a house of worship, in which their services are held. A flourishing Sabbath-school is connected with the church.

Congregational.-The following extract is taken from the early records of the church, referring to its organization:

"Alamo, MICHIGAN, October, 1849.

"At a Council called by letters missive by the brethren interested, and by the Rev. Isaac C. Crane, for the purpose of organizing a church in this place, there were present Rev. I. C. Crane, of this place, Rev. A. S. Kedzie, of Kalamazoo, Brother M. Everitt, of the Congregational Church, Kalamazoo, Brother L. Foster, of the Congregational Church of Otsego, and Brothers James Tallman and Julius Hackley, of this place. The Rev. I. C. Crane was appointed moderator, and Rev. A. S. Kedzie was appointed scribe. The Council was then opened with prayer. After a full discussion of the subject by the Council and by the brethren interested, it was resolved that this Council recommend to their brethren that they be formed into a church. The following persons then presented letters of admission and recommendation from the churches with which they had been connected, viz.:
"James Tallman and Elizabeth Tallman, from the Church at Lodi Plains, Mich.
"Julius Hackley and Dorothy Haekley, from the Church at Otsego, Mich.
"Searlea D. Barber, from the Church at Oxford, Mass.
"Charles W. Barber, from the Church at Kalamazoo, Mich.
"Rev. L C. Crane, from the Methodist Protestant Church.
"Agnes Tallman and Martha Green were received on profession
of faith. The Church then made choice of Brothers Julius Hackley and C. W. Barber as Deacons, who were set apart to the office with prayer by the Council. Brother Searles D. Barber was appointed Scribe. The church then adjourned.

"ISAAC C. CRANE, Moderator.
"A. S. Kedzie, Scribe."

Rev. Isaac C. Crane was settled over the little flock as their first pastor, and in 1853 the following officers were unanimously elected: Mahion Everitt, Julius Hackley, Deacons; Charles W. Barber, Clerk; Julius Hackley, rreasurer of Benevolent Funds.

Rev. B. F. Monroe was called to the pastorate in 1853, and continued his labors for three years, after which the church became extinct.

An effort was made to revive the organization in 1863, and in June of that year Rev. S. Osinga began his labors, and continued them until May 5, 1867, when his farewell sermon was preached.

In the summer of 1867, Rev. B. F. Monroe began his ministry, and in December of that year the church was reorganized.

The following portion of the records is copied:

"At a council called by letters missive by the brethren interested and Rev. B. F. Monroe, for the purpose of organizing a Congregational Church in this place (Alamo), the following churches responded to the call: Kalamazoo, Rev. O. S. Dean, minister, and Brother Rouse, delegate; Cooper, Rev. W. M. Campbell, minister; Otsego, Deacon L. Foster, delegate; Allegan, Rev. E. Andrus, minister. Deacon L. Foster, of Otsego, was chosen chairman, and Charles W. Barber scribe. The council was then opened with prayer by the moderator. After a full discussion of the subject by the council, the following preamble and resolutions were adopted:

"Whereas, This council have heard statements from brethren in Alamo. who purpose to form a Congregational church in this place, touching the relation of the Congregational interest to the Presbyterian church and interest, wherein it appears that two efforts have been made to build a Presbyterian church, and have been unsuccessful, and that now, in the providence of God, there seems to be indication that a Congregational house of worship might be built and its worship sustained; therefore:

"Resolved, That the council express it as their opinion that it is expedient to organize a Congregational church in this place, as a means of promoting the best interest of the community and the highest glory of our common Master."

At the next meeting the following persons presented themselves for membership: Searles D. Barber, Charles W. Barber, Agnes Barber, Lydia Bacheldor, Julius Hackley, Dorothy Hackley, Mrs. Selkrig. Julius Hackley and Charles W. Barber were elected Deacons, and Searles D. Barber, Clerk.

After a pastorate of nearly three years, Rev. B. F. Monroe resigned in March, 1870, and was succeeded by Rev. Elam Branch, who began his labors in July of the same year, and closed them April 1, 1872. The following May, Rev. Mr. Armstrong accepted the pastorate, and remained one year. Rev. E. Dyer came June 29, 1873, and continued to minister to the congregation till the present pastor, Rev. F. W. Bush, was installed, April 1, 1877.

The present membership of the church numbers 92. The deacons are Joseph Coshun, Pennuel Hobbs, Charles W. Barber. The trustees are: for the society, Aaron Taliman; for the church, Harman C. Van Vranken, Oliver Brockway; Church Clerk, Charles W. Barber.


Numerous schools in the township denote the lively interest manifested by its residents in the cause of education. All of them follow the regime prescribed for the ordinary district school, and a graded school of a higher order is one of the developments of the future. The school buildings are comfortable, but by no means pretentious, the one at Alamo Centre being more spacious than the rest, and from its size and location somewhat imposing in appearance.

The earliest school-house in Alamo was built in the Finch Settlement, on the southeast corner of section 1. It was constructed of logs, on land appropriated for the purpose by William Finch in 1837. Miss Powers first filled. the onerous position of teacher of this school. The second school building in the township was constructed of tamarack logs, on section 22. This was discarded for a more imposing brick building, and later a frame structure was used. For some years after, the three buildings were all standing as a monument to the progressive tendencies of the trustees of the district.


For many years burials were made upon the farms of the inhabitants, but, as the need of a spot devoted exclusively to purposes of interment became apparent, a lot was given to the township authorities by one of the citizens to be used as a cemetery. It was located on the Paw Paw road, east of the centre of the township, and was improved and fenced. This cemetery was for years in general use, and is still used by many old residents, hut in 1848 a plot of ground was purchased by the township from Easton Tallman, located between Alamo Centre and the depot. This has been neatly inelosed and carefully platted. Many large and imposing memorial slabs testify to the tender memories that cluster around this spot. The first interment was that of ilenry Piper, of Alamo. There is also in the south part of the township an incorporated cemetery association controlled jointly by residents of Alamo and Oshtemo.

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