Today was the turn of Ranslow Smith (1805-1873), born in New York, migrated to Dodge County, Wisconsin in about 1844, moved in 1867 to Taylor County, Iowa, and died in Andrew County, Missouri in 1873.
When I searched on Mocavo.com for First Name = ranslow, Last Name = smith, and Keywords = dodge wisconsin, I had 105 matches from all of the databases available on Mocavo.com:
The top two matches were from the Dodge County, Wisconsin history book, but I don't think I had seen it before. The second one looks like this:
The keywords are highlighted in yellow on the page above, and below the page image is a transcription of the page:
I really like the transcription - in this case, because the page image had really small type (although I could zoom in with the controls above the image). I can also copy the text and paste it into my database or blog post if I want. The paragraph with Ranslow Smith's name says:
"A l g o n a , Iowa, November 8 , 1879.
H. C. H a n s b r o u g h , E s q . —Dear Sir : Yours of October 29 is received. My time is very much occupied at present, but feeling a lively interest in the work in which you are now engaged, I will endeavor to call up some reminiscences of the past, and hope the substance thereof may find a place in your valuable work, so as to live in the future. As I was not the first settler in the county, and my MS. record of the early days is lost, I can speak positively only of such matters as came under my own observation. Of matters pertaining to the settlement previous to May, 1845, you will be obliged to seek information from others. Not having visited Dodge County for many years past, I know not who, among the old pioneers, may now be living, or, if living, where now located. I will name a few who, if living, could give you much valuable information : Hon. Hiram Barber, A. H . Atwater, Ethan Owen, Waldo and Durkie Lyon, George and Ranslow Smith, Morris Grout, E . C. Lewis, Silas Grover, Silas Hemstreet, Garry Taylor, James Rogers, Dr. Stoddard Judd, Alvin and William Foster, Amasa Hyland, Chester May, Solomon, Narcisse and Paul Juneau, Lucas S. Van Orden, H . D. Patch, Robert W hittaker, Lathrop Horton, Martin Rich, Sr., Alfred Wheelock, and many others whose names I do not now recall. Those above named are such as I call to mind, irrespective of locality, as being among the old pioneers."
Further down the list of matches, was a link to Proceedings of the Historical Society of Wisconsin published in 1914:
The next page provides more information:
This article discussed the Old Inns and Taverns of Wisconsin, and in Dodge County is the Inn of Ranslow Smith. The paragraph concerning Ranslow says:
"Town of Burnett: Smith’s Inn, on the S. W. 1/4 S. E., S. 32, the favorite on the line, was conducted by Ranslow Smith who arrived in 1844. At the southwest comer of the town Isaac Noyes kept tavern. George Smith, a brother of Ranslow, ran the house at the intersection of the roads, N. W. 1/4 of N. E. 1/4, S. 32. A mile and a quarter north, on N. W. 1/4 of S. E. 1/4, S. 20, Lyman Smith, another brother, kept tavern. His daughter married Sherman S. Booth the Abolitionist editor."
I cleaned up the fractions, the transcription did not render them correctly.
The location of Smith's Inn, later called the Four-Mile Inn, was known to me from my visit and my work with land plat maps, but this would have been very useful information if I had not known it. I also knew that George and Lyman were his brothers. This provides an arrival date in Dodge County of 1844.
In one of the other matches, I learned that Ranslow Smith had been a Supervisor in 1860 and a Justice of the Peace in 1862 for the Town of Oak Grove.
As you can see, Mocavo.com has hundreds of thousands of databases, some small, some large, and they are adding about 1,000 per day.
Now on to the next name and place on my list -- Ranslow Smith and Taylor County, Iowa. I found nothing new - two matches to the Wisconsin data above and 56 matches to my own blog posts and message board posts.
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Copyright (c) 2014, Randall J. Seaver