Who were our first officials elected in 1843?
Chairman: Harmon Marsh
Born 1799 in Litchfield, Connecticut, Marsh is a descendent of John Webster, who served one term as Governor of Connecticut in 1656. He was appointed U.S. Postmaster at Pompey Centre, Onondaga, New York in 1831, and served until 1842 when he then came to Racine County. By 1843 he was serving on the Racine Board of Supervisors. In 1843 he was elected Chairman of the Town of Pike. In 1847, he was re-elected, and in 1856 he was elected as Treasurer of the Board of Supervisors in Kenosha County.
Supervisor: Joseph Post Hurlbut
Born 1788 in Westhampton, Massachusetts, Hurlbut came to Wisconsin in 1835 and settled in the Town of Pike. He is shown living in the Town on the 1850 census, but later took up residence in Racine where he held the office of County Treasurer. He was one of the first to purchase land in the town: 160 acres on March 3, 1843.
Supervisor: Richard Miller
Born 1781 in New York, he married and had one child, a daughter, Lucretia Miller, who was born in 1811 in Chautauqua County, New York. Lucretia married Fitch Allen Higgins (1843 Town of Pike Commissioner of Highways) in April 1842 in the Town of Pike. Richard Miller died in the Town of Pike in 1848.
Clerk: Oscar Hurlbut
Born 1819 in Pompey, New York, Oscar Hurlbut served in the 1850 Third Session of the Wisconsin Assembly from Dodge County. He enlisted in Company E, the 49th Wisconsin Infantry and died in Chattanooga, Tennessee. He was the son of Joseph P. Hurlbut, born 1788 in Westhapton, Massachusetts, who in 1835 came to Wisconsin and settled in the Town of Pike. Oscar was the son of Joseph Post Hurlbut, Town of Pike Supervisor, and brother to Lucius Hurlbut, Town of Pike Treasurer in 1843.
Treasurer: Lucius Rockwell Hurlbut
Born 1812 in Pompey, New York, Lucius resided some years in Racine and afterward the family settled in Durand, Illinois. This daughter, Frances Valentia Hurlbut, was born in the Town of Pike.
Assessor: Hollis Whitney
Born 1793 in Marlboro, Vermont, Whitney arrived in Wisconsin with his wife Sarah, initially living in the Town of Southport. Whitney, along with F.J. Higgons, was part of an exploring party from Hannibal, New York who came to the Town of Southport for the purpose of establishing a Congregational Church in the new settlement.
Assessor: William H. Addington
Born 1808 in Paris Hill, New York, Addington lived in the Town of Pike as shown in the 1846 Wisconsin Census. By the 1850 Census, he moved to Dover, Racine County. He then lived in Burlington for a period of time until in 1870 he married the second time in Maysville, Dekalb, Missouri.
Assessor: Alvin Strong
Born 1808 in Stafford, Tolland, Connecticut, he came to Wisconsin and the Town of Pike with his brothers, David and Samuel, who were also land owners in the early 1830’s. Alvin purchased 160 acres in Section 9 on December 10, 1840. Strong was also the owner of an additional 80 acres in Section 9. His daughter, Sarah Strong, married Mead O. Myrick (also a Somers pioneer) on 1876. Alvin Strong died in Somers in 1860.
Commissioners of Highways: Abram Bowker
Born 1804 in Vermont, he purchased 160 acres of land in the Town of Pike from the U.S. Government on March 31, 1843. He owned 80 acres in Section 18 and two 40 acre parcels in Section 17. In 1900 he sold his farm and in 1916 the Thomas Birchell family of Sylvania moved into the old Bowker place. Abram Bowker, in his declining years, went to live in Madison with his daughter.
Commissioners of Highways: Fitch A. Higgins
Born 1793 in Milford, Connecticut, Higgons was drafted in 1813 into the U.S. Army in the War of 1812 as a drummer. He served a term of 45 days. Fitch and family arived in Wisconsin in 1835 and was one of the first settlers in Pleasant Prairie where he built a log cabin and reared his family. According to the 1850 census, Fitch lived in the Town of Pike on 50 ares of improved land and he also owned 110 acres of unimproved land. In addition, he owned land in Section 30 of Pleasant Prairie and a good part of the present Forest Park subdivison in Kenosha.
Commissioners of Highways: Richard Miller
Commissioners of Highways: Peter Reas
Born 1800 in Corkland County, New York, he came to Wisconsin in 1843 purchasing 160 acres of land from the U.S. Government. He was living in Somers as of the 1860 census and later moved to Racine at age 81 by 1880. His daughter, Mary E. Reas married Horace T. DeLong, also Somers pioneers, owning 189 acres in Section 6 that were purchased in the 1840’s.
Commissioners of Common Schools: Joseph P. Hurlbut
Commissioners of Common Schools: Ira Newman
Born 1800 in Pompey, Onondaga, New York, Newman owned two parcels in Somers: 60 acres and 80 acres in Section 26. In 1841, the first Hillcrest School building was located about a mile east of the present site on the then Ira Newman farm. It was a rude log structure. The quarter acre of land was to be used school purposes without charge, or rent, so long as it was occupied as a school. The first school was known as the Ridge School. In 1852, a roll was called for building of a new schoolhouse and $360 was voted for this purpose. The site chosen was the present one, now called Hillcrest. Ira Newman died in 1871. His brothers Urial, Joseph, and Philo all were farmers and among the first landowners in Somers. Years later, a descendant of Ira Newman, Frank Newman, one of the first officers in the newly established (1947) Somers Civic Association. Frank Newman also served as Clerk of the Town of Somers in the 1960’s.
Commissioners of Common Schools: Peter D. Hugunin
Born 1782 in Mapletown, on the Mohawk River, Montgomery, New York, he fought in the Battle of Oswego in 1814. In 1833 he and his son Edgar stopped at Kenosha from the cutter “Westward Ho” upon which vessel they left Chicago to visit Green Bay and intermediate ports. Hugunin remained here and began agricultural pursuits in 1836 in the Town of Somers, owning land in Section 30. Peter died in 1865 in Chicago. The 1861 map of Somers shows his son, Edgar owned 50 acres in Section 24 , 110 acres in Section 24, and 27 acres in Section 25.
(Source: Ancestry.com and local newspaper articles)