OTTER TAIL COUNTY, MINNESOTA
EAST OTTER TAIL COUNTY 1977, VOL.I
JAMES DAVIS FAMILY
James Davis was a native of Ostego County, New York and was born on Nov. 25, 1825, one of thirteen children, born to Ezra and Sabra Somers Davis. James was a drummer boy in Co. K. Fourth Regiment, Volunteer Infantry through the Civil War.
In 1847 he married Evelyn Cronchite and to this union eight children were born. After the death of his first wife, in 1866, James Davis married Eliza Epler, a daughter of Joseph and Hannah Cressey Epler, all residents of Southern Minnesota, at Lyle, Minnesota.
In 1878, the Davis family, James and Eliza with children, Sophia, David, Ervin and John, also some neighbors, might be seen wending their way through the wilderness and plains of southern Minnesota in covered wagons drawn by oxen, and horses and driving the cattle. They were going further north from Lyle, Minnesota to Otter Tail County, to new territory, unplowed fields, and to the rigors of pioneer life.
They had no home to move into but the pioneers were hospitable and compassionate and the John Young family took the Davis family in until their crude log house on the bank of the Dead River could be thrown together. Later a frame house was built, which still stands, as tall and true as those sturdy pioneers who built it. This was their home until their deaths in 1916 and 1934. It is still owned by the family and is located in Section 2, Amor Township.
Six more children later blessed this home, two dying in infancy and May, at age of 19, of diphtheria. Clara, Nelson, and Cora completed the family. David farmed in Amor Township for some years, later bought the Basswood Store, which he ran for 17 years. After selling the store he bought and improved and later sold two farms in Dead Lake Township. David and his brother, Ervin, helped to lay the railroad through Perham, Minnesota. Ervin married Elizabeth Bullock, and also lived on a farm in Amor Township until his death.
Sophia married Charles Clintsman and although away for a time, spent many years on a farm in Amor. John married Helen Blissner and owned a restaurant at Mound, Minnesota. The same is true of Clara, who married Augustus Gaylord, a teacher, and later owner of the Basswood Store and Cora who married John Bixby, also a teacher for many years and later county assessor. They farmed across the line in Dead Lake Township.
Nelson married Ellen Gilbert, lived on the home farm all his life until he was 90 years old, and still returns for visits during the summer months. He now is 95 years old still quite active, and lives with his daughter at Detroit Lakes, Minnesota.
The pioneers lived a good life, although not an easy one. They engaged in free enterprise, raised their living, were active in community affairs, worked hard and were honest and God fearing. Schools and churches were raised up by prayer and sacrifice.
Now the reins of government are in the hands of their grandchildren, and great grandchildren. May the integrity and dignity, the compassion and honesty of the pioneers be the compelling force in their lives and may the liberties fought for by the pioneers continue as we hang on with a death grip to the ideals they struggled for and won.
OAK WOOD CEMETERY
Amor Township - Section 10 - Highway #14
Clintsman, Charles H (F) 1855 - Oct 25 1931
Clintsman, Sophie M. (M) Mar 2,1870 - Nov. 12,1946
Married December 27, 1888
Davis, Elizabeth Dec 8, 1880 - July 23, 1965
Davis, Ervin E. 1875 - July 5, 1929
Davis, James (F) 1825 - July 23, 1916
Davis, Eliza C. (M) Sept 21,1852 - July 24, 1934
Davis, John E. (S) Mar 9, 1878 - Oct 29, 1933
Davis, Nelson (F) Sept 25, 1880 - Aug 31, 1977
Davis, Lucinda Ellen (M) May 12, 1890 - Nov. 13, 1990 Married Mar 16, 1910
Davis, Jim E.(F) 1920 - 0000
Davis, Carol B.(M) July 28,1917 - Apr 4, 1991 Married May 16, 1942
Davis, Son 0000 - 1989
Davis, May Oct 17,1882 - Sept 8 1901
Davis, David Cresse (F) Jan 13, 1872 - Nov 15 1959
Davis, Lulu Lovina (M) Oct 11, 1878 - Mar 2, 1962 Married Dec. 15, 1898
Davis, Beatrice 0000 - 1991