On October 7, 1801, Morris Jenks, my 3 times great grandfather, was born in Berkshire, New York, to Laban and Prudence White Jenks. The 19 year old Morris migrated from New York to Oakland County Michigan with his parents and a number of his siblings. It was here that he met and married Almira Botsford on 28 November 1828. And it was in Southfield that the couple settled and raised their family: Leman Case, Esther, Oliver Torrey, and Minerva.
On 2 October 1829, Granfather Jenks was commissioned as a Captain in the Michigan Territorial Militia by Territorial Governor Lewis Cass. I have a copy of his commission. The original has been donated to the Southfield Library Historical Collection.
In 1853, Morris built the permanent family home which stands on Berg Road in Southfield. It was in this house that his daughter, Esther, was married to Charles Norton Lee. After Grandfather’s death on 13 February 1878, Charles and Esther purchased the farm from Grandmother Jenks and held it until Grandmother Lee’s death in 1919. It was in this home that my great grandparents, Lemuel and Effie Lee Weaver brought their son, Lee, a daughter, Olive, to live with Charles and Esther. My Grandfather Lee Weaver spent a number of years there as a toddler and visited his grandparents often after his parents moved on to their own home.
From 1909 until the 1920s the descendants of Morris Jenks held family reunions at the Jenks’ Place (now called Deer Lick Farm). An expanded biography of Grandfather Jenks can be found at http://patrickshaul.com/PDF_Files/MorrisJenks.pdf (this was the biographical lesson given by the family historian, Eva Seymour Jenks, to the reunion of 1924).
Thanks – I just posted this to the Southfield Public Library’s facebook page with pictures of the framed commission.