The Fay Family: Israel Fay 1806, Baptist Preacher

Israel Fay, Baptist Preacher
And his Descendants
from Gratiot County by M. F. Walling, 1873
image copyright 2005ff by Cartography Associates and used with permission
Ithaca is in the center of the county, St. Louis to the north, and Alma to the northwest.
Researched and Contributed by Sandy Norris and Linda Kaufman
It all started with an email query from Sandy Norris, the wife of the current Pastor of the Ithaca Baptist Church "regarding an Israel Fay who would have been the first Pastor of Ithaca Baptist Church, Ithaca, MI, from 1857-1859. We are celebrating the church's 150th year, and would like some information about each of the pastors who served at our church."
The first definitive information we found comes from a series of articles published in the Nebraska State Genealogical Journals, "NEBRASKA ANCESTREE," Volume 6, No. 4, Spring 1984. The title of the specific article is: "Elk City Cemetery, Elkhorn Precinct, Douglas County, NE", and it is written by Mrs. Georgene Morris Sones. She gathered information from various sources, and writes that "most of the following obits were taken from the WATERLOO WEEKLY GAZETTE" -- it is not clear whether the following comes from there or another of her sources. The following appears on page 134 of her article.
19 April 1901: Grandma FAY died Wednesday. Interment Elk City Cemetery. Roxanna POST was born in Lower Canada on 1 March 1808. She joined the Baptist Church when young. Married 15 Feb. 1827 to Israel FAY, a Baptist minister. They had 10 children, 5 boys & 5 girls. All are dead except Mrs. Betsy DAKENS, Douchester, Ontario, Canada and Mrs. Jennie CARRIGAN of Waterloo. Mr. & Mrs. FAY went to Kansas in 1859. He is buried at Burlington, Kans. She came to Waterloo in 1874 and here joined the Christian Church. She died 17 April at home of Mrs. CARIGAN & Miss BUTTERWORTH. Aged 93 yrs, 1 mo. 16 days.
It does not seem possible to track Israel exactly. We know that he was born in Canada about 1806 (mortality list), that he married in Canada, and that he was in New York for the birth of his son Luke. He may have lived there a few years, for it is quite likely that he is the Israel Fay in the 1840 census of Brasher, St. Lawrence County, NY. As far as we know, Luke was the only child born in the U.S., unless Jane was born in Michigan; the records differ. We know very little about the children of Israel and Roxanna; it has not been possible to learn more. We know that Israel was performing duties as a Baptist Preacher in 1848 in Canada, for he married Caroline Amelia Hoyt and John Andrew Parrish on August 5,1848 in Dorchester, Ontario (The Whitney Family of Connecticut..., page 946).
When then did he move to Michigan? I checked the 1850 census of Michigan, and the 1851 census of Canada (compiled in 1852 in many cases), and I could not find him in either census. It is interesting that he was active in Dorchester, for his daughter Betsy continued to live there. That is a city in Upper Canada, very close indeed to Michigan. I think that Israel's family split up early in the 1850's with his older children remaining in Canada, and the younger travelling with him to Michigan, and I think this move happened between the two censuses--after the U.S. 1850 but before the 1851/1852 census of Canada. This would explain many of the things we see. Israel may have married Roxanna in Lower Canada and then soon moved to Upper Canada. I have tried to find other Fay people in Dorcester, but I have not found any.
Below is a very sketchy timeline of Israel's life.
1806   born in Canada
1827   married to Roxanna Post in Canada (2/15/1827)
1828 - 1851   birth of children
1838   birth of Luke in Clinton County
1848   performed marriage ceremony in Dorchester
1850 - 1852   Novi, Oakland County (after 5/1850 to 11/4/1852)
1854   to Gratiot County (one of first ministers & settlers)
1855 - 1856   Grand Blanc / Whigville, Genesee County
1857 - 1859   Ithaca, Gratiot County (7/18/1857 - 1859)
1859   trip to Kansas, sent for family
1859   death in Liberty, Woodson County, Kansas
According to the obituary and the census, Israel died in Kansas in 1859. In 1860, Roxanna is living with her son in Liberty, Woodson County, Kansas. Her son is named Luke (the census indexer misread it as "Lube", but it is clearly "Luke.") With Roxanna and Luke are Amanda and a child Israel. The census was taken in July, and baby Israel was five months old. Luke was born about 1838, and Amanda about 1844. In the same census on a separate page, there is a list of those who have died in the county in the year leading up to June 1860. Israel's name is on the list.
1860, Liberty, Woodson, KS
My first thought was that Amanda was Luke's wife, the second that she was Luke's sister and a daughter of Roxanna. I noticed that there was no "ditto" mark used to indicate Amanda's last name, but that does happen. The mystery of Amanda was somewhat cleared up by her affidavit for Roxanna's pension claim. In that, she refers to "Mrs Fay" and says that Luke was unmarried, and that she herself had been a frequent "visitor". That does not fully explain why she was counted on the census with Roxanna. And it does not explain why the baby was named "Israel." Did Amanda name the baby in honor of Mrs Fay's husband? or did she name the baby for the father of the baby's father; in other words, was this really Luke's baby, and would Amanda and Luke have married if he had not died soon after? The baby seems to have died in infancy, for he is not found in 1870.
1870, Burlington, Coffey, KS
Amanda married Albert Foster, and Roxanna lived with them. Also with them is Julia Jones: this is Roxanna's daughter Julia, back home after her first marriage.
1880, Elkhorn And Chicago, Douglas, NE
Julia had married Omar Whitney, and her mother Roxanna was a member of the household. Also there was Jane Carrigan, sister of Julia and daughter of Roxanna, listed as married but with no husband there.
1900, Waterloo, Douglas, NE
Jane has established a household and taken Roxanna in with her. Roxanna was 92 and was to die in 1901. Roxanna had ten children; the next column should have been "how many still alive" but it was misinterpreted as "how many dead" and they wrote 8. Two of her children were still alive.
Israel Fay and Roxana Post are said to have had ten children. We know the names of only four [obituary, Roxana's statement in 1900]. Included here is Amanda for reasons discussed below.
Luke Betsy Julia Jane Amanda
LUKE was born in New York in 1838 [calculated from age on enlistment date] and died on January 23, 1862. He was not married and had no children. Details can be seen in his pension file.
BETSY was one of the older children. She was born in Canada, and when the family moved to Michigan, she remained in Canada; I think she was already married at the time of the move, for her oldest son was born in May of 1854. Her name is found in several different forms: Dakin, Dakins, Dakens, and probably Daken. Betsy is alive in 1901; I have not found her after that.
1  Betsy Fay  b: 2/7/1829
...+William Dakin  b: 1825  d: before 1901
.....2  Mark Dakin  b: 5/24/1854
.....2  Luke Dakin  b: 12/15/1862  d: 11/19/1921 [probably]
.....2  Mary Elizabeth Dakin  b: 5/23/1868
........+William Whittaker  b: 2/8/1864
..........3  Ernest Whittaker  b: 3/1905
JULIA and most of her family stayed in Douglas County, NE. Luna and John Bean went first to West Virginia, birth state of John, and then moved to California. Julia's first marriage is known only through the entry in the census of 1870.
1  Julia Fay  b: 1846 [census of 1860]
...+(1) unknown Jones [dead or separated by 1870]
...+(2) Omar Whitney
.......2  Eugene Whitney  b: 2/1867
..........+Anna  b: 2/1876  m: 1898
..............3  Nellie Rora Whitney  b: 1901
..............3  Alice M. Whitney  b: 1903
..............3  Willard Whitney  b: 4/23/1907  d: 9/1971
..............3  Francis E. Whitney  b: 1916
.......2  Luna F. Whitney  b: 3/1869
..........+John D. Bean  b: 1857  m: 1886
..............3  Ethel E. Bean  b: 5/1887
..............3  Agnes R. Bean  b: 10/1888
..............3  William Eugene Bean  b: 3/1/1891
..............3  George MCG Bean  b: 11/1898
..............3  Margaret H. Bean  b: 1901
LUCY JANE FAY, called JANE or Jane L. in census records and Jennie in the obituary, was born 9/1848 [birth supported by evidence of pension file]. According to her affidavit, she lived with Roxanna and Luke until Luke's death. By 1880, she has married and been widowed, and is living in Douglas County, Nebraska with Roxanna and Julia. It has not been possible to find her in the census of 1870, nor is she listed with Roxanna and Luke in 1860. The name of her husband is still not known. She did not have children [census of 1900].
AMANDA is living with Roxanna in Liberty, Woodson County, KS, in 1860. By 1870, Amanda and Merritt are married and living in Burlington, Coffey County, KS. In their household are Roxanna Fay and Julia Fay Jones. By 1880, Amanda is gone and the rest of the Foster family is in California, where they stay at least through 1900. LDS knows of the marriage of Merritt to Amanda, and one entry gives Amanda's maiden name as Hay. If it weren't for her affidavit, where she seems to make it absolutely clear that she was NOT a daughter, I would still suspect that, and have "Hay" be a normal misreading of "Fay." There are other things against this though in addition to the deposition. Did she really marry Luke before his death? Her first child was Israel, as we saw above, and she later had a son named Luke. It is clear that her life was closely entwined with Roxanna's.
Many thanks to Roxie Shaffer for further information about Amanda and Merritt, as well as an updated list of their children. Roxie wrote: "The record that I have is just a copy of the page that both Amanda and Merritt signed at the time they were married and it was later typed out so that you could read it and the original was not kept by the records office for some reason." And writing of the possibility of further information from the time of her death, Roxie wrote, "there are not any records of her death other than the head stone, the records at the clerks office are incomplete because of the cemetery directors at the time it seems that after the plots had all been sold that the family that owned the cemetery abandoned it and the city took it over several years later most of the records were either lost or never kept." It seems as if we have gone as far as possible in trying to trace Amanda. February 2009
1  Amanda b: 1843  d: 5/3/1880
...+Merritt Clark Foster  b: 1/26/1832  m: 3/21/1865  d: 1/10/1916

.....2  Charles Foster  b: 12/1867  d: 4/14/1931
.....2  Merritt Foster  b: 12/1870  d: 11/9/1939
........+Mary Elnora Stanley  b: 1875  m: 1894
..........3  Clarence Alvan Foster  b: 6/29/1895  d: 8/25/1990
..........3  Leonard Bertrand Foster  b: 2/9/1897  d: 3/17/1966
..........3  Amanda E. Foster  b: 1898  d: 1946
..........3  Hattie Aleen Foster  b: 9/9/1901  d: 7/1/1984
..........3  Ivan Curtis Foster  b: 10/16/1903  d: 3/21/1988
..........3  Chris Foster  b: 1905
..........3  Clark Foster  b: 1911  d: 1960

.....2  Luke Wilber Foster  b: 11/27/1873  d: 6/19/1939
........+Myrta Belle Kellogg  b: 3/15/1875 d: 12/6/1943 m: 6/18/1892
..........3  Mamie A. Foster  b: 1893  d: 1978
..........3  Ida A. Foster  b: 1897  d: 1960
..........3  Wilbur Luke Foster  b: 2/7/1899  d: 2/19/1946
.............+Lelia Irene Carl  b: 4/29/1904  d: 12/19/1972
...............4  Mable Foster  b: 11/1/1929
..................+Henry Howard McClelland b: 6/28/1917 d: 8/3/1962
..........3  Belle M. Foster  b: 1901  d: 1956
..........3  George Merritt Foster  b: 4/1/1903  d: 1/26/1943
..........3  Albert Foster  b: 1905  d: 1956
..........3  Charles F. Foster  b: 1908  d: 1929
..........3  Ada A. Foster  b: 5/13/1909  d: 3/25/1994
..........3  Hattie May Foster  b: 8/1/1911  d: 10/22/1894
..........3  Nellie Foster  b: 1913
..........3  Walter C. Foster  b: 7/4/1916  d: 1/30/1970

.....2  Hattie Mae Foster  b: 11/17/1876  d: 9/7/1963
........+Fred R. Marquardt  m: 1892
..........3  Leola V. Marquardt  b: 1892  d: 1987
..........3  Emma A. Marquardt  b: 1894  d: 1983
..........3  Hattie Marquardt  b: 1897  d: 1976
..........3  Fred R. Marquardt  b: 1899  d: 1970