Kent County

Whitneyville Cemetery: the King brothers

Hiram King of the 5th Michigan Infantry, Alvin King of the 6th Michigan Cavalry and Myron King of the 3rd Michigan Infantry. Myron's stone is facing his two brothers and set back nearly out of the cemetery into the undergrowth, even though it's a relatively new stone. When I photographed this nearly a quarter f a century ago it was a very weather stone roughly in line with the other two King brothers.

Myron murdered his wife and then shot and killed himself.

James W. Sims - update 2/14/2017

James W. Sims was born in 1817, in New Jersey.

James married New York native Mary Lewis (1817-1870) and they had at least four children: Emma (1844-1921, Mrs. Konkle), James Larie (1848-1866), Emily Arvilla (b. 1850) and William L. (1853-1885).

By 1846 James and his wife had settled in Michigan, and by 1850 James was working as a magistrate and living with his wife and children in Plainfield, Kent County. In 1860 he was working as a lawyer and living with his wife and four children in Plainfield.

James was 44 years old and probably living in Kent County when he enlisted in (but was never mustered into service) in the 3rd Michigan.

Instead, James enlisted in Company F, 14th Michigan Infantry on December 17, 1861, at Grand Rapids, and was mustered on January 7, 1862. He was a hospital attendant from June through August, in September he was assigned to the hospital at Tuscambia, Alabama as of August 29, 1862, and he was at Tuscambia in October. In January of 1863 James was detached to the hospital in Knoxville, Tennessee through April of 1863.

He died of disease at Nashville, Tennessee, on February 28, 1864. His body was apparently returned to Michigan and he was buried in Plainfield cemetery, Kent County: 1-52.

In May of 1864 his widow Mary applied for and received a pension (no. 28687). She is buried in Plainfield cemetery, Kent County: 1-52-4.



Family plot it's likley that the father James W. is buried in the open space next to his wife Mary

Abram A. Martindale - update 8/23/2016

Abram A. Martindale was born around 1838 in Ohio, the son of New York natives Benjamin Franklin (1804-1883) and Esther (or Hester) Gray (1799-1864).

Abram’s parents were married in in 1828 in Brutus, Cayuga County, New York. Benjamin lived in Cayuga County for some years but by 1838 he moved his family to Ohio, then back to New York between 1838 and 1842 before moving to western Michigan sometime after 1844. By 1850 Abram was living with his family in Grand Rapids, where his father worked as a carpenter.

Abram was living in Grand Rapids when he married Harriet Hotchkiss on December 15, 1859. In 1860 his father Benjamin was living in Walker, Kent County. (Benjamin married his second wife, Sarah A. Rindge, probably in Grand Rapids, Kent County, Michigan.)

Abram was 23 years old and probably living in Plainfield, Kent County when he enlisted as Fourth Sergeant in Company F on May 13, 1861. He allegedly deserted on March 23, 1862, or August 28, 1862, or September 21, 1862 at Upton’s Hill, Virginia. In fact, he had probably been hospitalized in late July, and by August 4 he was reported as a patient in the general hospital at Annapolis, Maryland. In fact, he was among the sick and wounded soldiers who had been brought to New York from Alexandria, Virginia aboard the steamer Daniel Webster, on September 5.

Nevertheless, Abram was reduced to the ranks from First Sergeant on September 9, 1862. It is unknown what happened to Abram after he returned to Alexandria. It appears that he failed to join the regiment, though, and it is possible that he returned to Michigan, perhaps to recover his health.

Abram was still absent from duty when he was transferred as a deserter to Company F, 5th Michigan Infantry upon consolidation of the 3rd and 5th Michigan Regiments on June 10, 1864. He eventually reported to the provost marshal at New York City on April 13, 1865, and was officially returned from desertion on May 17, 1865 near Washington, DC, under the President’s Proclamation of March 11, 1865, providing amnesty for deserters. He was mustered out on July 5, 1865, at Jeffersonville, Indiana.

It is unknown if Abram returned to Michigan after the war. By 1870 he was working as a carpenter and living in Jamesville, Martin County, North Carolina. (His father and stepmother were living in Walker, Kent County in 1870.) Abram apparently married Cora M. Poston (b. 1858) and they had at least three children: Fielder (1876-1942), Wallace Ames or Amos (1878-1962) and Edgar (b. 1880).

Abram and his family were living in Maryland in 1876 but in Grand Rapids, Michigan two years later when Wallace was born. By 1880 they were back in Maryland where Abram was working as a carpenter and living with Cora and his children in the 1st Precinct, Baltimore.

Abram died of a liver abcess on November 18, 1880 in Cincinnati, Ohio, and was presumably buried there. (Although oddly enough, he is listed in the Kent County, Michigan Death Returns, but having died in Cincinnati. Was his body returned to Michigan or Maryland for interment? To date no records have come to light confirming any burial location.)

Cora returned to Grand Rapids in 1881 but soon went back to Baltimore where she was living in 1886, 1921 and 1923. No pension seems to be available.

Thomas Henfry updated 2/14/2017

Thomas Henfry or Henfrey was born on June 6, 1844, in Lincolnshire, England, the son of English-born George Henfry (1808-1890) and Mary Baker (1817-1871). George and Mary were married on December 1, 1828, in Trent, Nottingham, England. The family immigrated to the United States and settled in Michigan sometime between 1845 and 1850 when they were living in Allendale, Ottawa County. In 1860 George and Mary were living on a farm in Cascade, Kent County, and Thomas’ older sister Sarah was working as a domestic for Jonathan Thomas, a farmer in Cascade.

Thomas was probably living in the Lansing area in the spring of 1861 when he became a member of the Lansing company called the “Williams’ Rifles,” whose members would serve as the nucleus of Company G on June 10, 1861. Indeed, he was 16 years old when he enlisted in Company G, but was transferred to Company B at some point prior to the Regiment’s departure from Grand Rapids on June 13, 1861.

There is no further record.

In fact, it appears that he was 18 years old, a blacksmith, stood 5’5”with gray eyes, light hair and light complexion when enlisted on April 2, 1862, at Detroit in Company G, 17th US Infantry. Thomas was discharged on account of disability on November 5, 1864, at Fort Preble, Portland, Maine. In May of 1865 Thomas applied for a pension (no. 67972) but the certificate was never granted.

Thomas returned to his parent’s home in Cascade where he died on April 18, 1867, and was buried in Cascade cemetery: lot 2 grave no. 1.

His mother, although buried next to her husband (according to cemetery records and whose headstone is long gone), has written on her headstone: “Mother of Thomas.”

In 1870 George was living by himself in Cascade, and Mary was living with the Edward Love (?) family in Cascade. George was still living in Cascade in 1890.