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Elias Hall.—Now living virtually retired from active business, this venerable and honored citizen of Ludington finds that his ''lines are cast in pleasant places," as here he has an attractive home and is surrounded by a host of loyal and valued friends. He has been one of the world's workers and his success has been the result of his own well directed efforts. He is not only one of the representative citizens of Mason county but is also a native son of Michigan and a scion of one of its honored pioneer families, with whose annals the name has been identified during practically the entire period of its statehood. He was one of the loyal sons of Michigan who went forth to render valiant service in defense of the Union when its integrity was menaced by armed rebellion, and iu all the relations of life he has shown the same high sense of duty that he manifested as a soldier. His life has been one of earnestness and honor, and it is but in justice due that in this publication be entered a brief review of his career.

Elias Hall was born in Allegan county, Michigan, on the 26th of January, 1838, and he is a son of Silas and Susan (Storms) Hall, both of whom were born in New Hampshire, and both of whom were representatives of families founded in New England in the colonial epoch of our national history. Silas Hall was born at Croyden, Sullivan county, New Hampshire, in which state he was reared and educated, and he came to Michigan in 1836, becoming one of the pioneer settlers of Allegan county, where he remained until 18-42, when he removed to Grand Rapids, which was then a mere lumbering village, and he was closely identified with the early history of what is now the second city of the state. He was a contractor and builder by vocation and as a man of s!rong individuality, sterling character and alert mentality he wielded much influence in the community with which he thus identified himself. He was a resident of Grand Rapids at the time of his death, at the age of sixty-five years, and his name merits an enduring place on the roll of the honored pioneers of the Wolverine commonwealth. In politics he was originally a Whig, but he identified himself with the Republican party at the time of its organization and ever afterward continued a strong advocate of its principles. He was twice married.—first to Miss Susan Storms, who died at the age of fifty-five years. They became the parents of five children, of whom four attained to years of maturity, and of the number three are now living, tire subject of this review being the eldest: Mary, who resides in the city of Grand Rapids, is the widow of E. Chase Phillips; and Jeanctte is the wife of Charles T. Patterson, of Washington. For his second wife the father married Maria Dean.

Elias Hall was a child of four years at the time of the family removal from Allegan county to Grand Rapids, and there he was reared to years of maturity. He has witnessed the various stages of growth in the upbuilding of this line commercial and industrial city, and his memory well recalls the time when it was little more than a straggling village. He was afforded the advantages of the common schools of the !ocality and period, and as a youth he began to assist his father in his various business operations. He apparently inherited his skill as a mechanic and was one of the early cabinet makers employed in the furniture manufactory of Nelson, Matter & Company, which eventually became one of the great concerns giving world wide prestige to Grand Rapids as a furniture-manufacturing center.

'When the dark cloud of Civil war cast its pall over the national horizon Mr. Hall did not long subordinate the call of patriotism, as in 1862 he enlisted as a private in Company B, Fifth Michigan Cavalry, which became a part of the gallant brigade commanded by General Custer, who later sacrificed his life in the great Indian massacre through which his name is perpetuated in the history of the nation. This brigade was attached to the Army of the Potomac and with the same Mr. Hall continued in active service until the close of the war. He was promoted to the office of quartermaster's sergeant and later to that of orderly sergeant, with which rank he was mustered out after the loug and sanguinary struggle had reached its close. He participated in many of the important battles marking the progress of the great conflict and proved himself a valiant and faithful soldier of the republic. He participated in the Grand Review of the victorious troops in the city of Washington, and he was on the skirmish line facing Lee's army at the time of the final surrender of that gallant Confederate officer. He received his honorable discharge at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, on the 20th of Julv, 1865.

After the close of the war Mr. Hall returned to Grand Rapids, where he continued to be employed at the cabinet-maker's trade for several years, having devoted a total of about twenty years to this line of work, in which he became a specially skillful artisan. In 1881 he removed to Ludington, where he engaged in the retail furniture business, in which he continued until 1887, when he removed to Reed City, Osceola county, where he was identified with the same line of enterprise for the ensuing three years, and also insurance, at the expiration of which he returned to Grand Rapids, whence he removed to the city of Battle Creek in 1901. For a period of about sixteen years he was a traveling salesman for furniture manufactories, and insurance agent,'and he continued to reside in Battle Creek until 1907, when he returned to Ludington, where he has since lived retired. From 1871 to 1875 he was a resident of St. Joseph, Missouri, where he was engaged in business, and during his entire active career he maintained a high reputation for close application and executive ability.

From the time of attaining hjs legal majority to the present, Mr. Hall has been an uncompromising supporter of the cause of the Republican party, and he cast his first presidential vote for Abraham Lincoln, while serving as a soldier in the Civil war in the field. He has voted for every presidential candidate of the party since that time and is well fortified in his opinions as to matters of public polity. Mr. Hall is a valued and appreciative member of Custer Post, No. 5, Grand Army of the Republic, in the city of Grand Rapids, and there also he has been affiliated with Valley City Lodge, No. 86, Free & Accepted Masons, from which he holds a certificate indicating that he has been a member of the same for forty years. He also holds membership in the Independent Order of Foresters, and both he and his wife are zealous members of the First Baptist Church of Ludington, in which he is a deacon.

Mr. Hall has been twice married. In 1860 was solemnized his union to Miss Martha E. Haire, who was born in Canada and with her people moved to Michigan and was married here. She died in Colorado, in 1878. Two children were born of this union—William Silas who now resides in Guadalajara, Mexico, where he is employed by the Mexican government, and Eva J., who died at the age of seven years. On the 6th of October, 1879, Mr. Hall wedded Miss Jennie Shackelton, who was born at Alpine, Kent county, Michigan, and who is a daughter of the late Jeremiah and Rachel (Williams) Shackelton, honored pioneers of that county. Two children were born of the second marriage—George Morgan, a traveling salesman in the city of Grand Rapids, and John DeWitt, who is engaged in the real estate business in Ludington

A history of northern Michigan and its people, Volume 2 By Perry Francis Powers, Harry Gardner Cutler

 

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Note to researchers, I do not maintain information on families outside of my own at this time, Your best chance to contact other family researchers and find information is going to be in posting some of your family information on the Mason County Boards. Volunteers and lookup materials can be found in the "lookups" category. -I routinely check the postings if I have information or can steer you in another direction I will contact you. I do not provide research services. Historic White Pine Village can help you in that area.

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