HOME - Front Page
Heritage \ People \

Stark Family History.
Pioneer family of Bay County.
By Tim Stark (Mar 2005)

My great great grandparents, Henry Mead Stark and Fanny Perry Ferguson Stark, arrived in Michigan in 1839/40 and first resided in Eagle, Clinton County. Their family of nine was already maturing by then, and my great grandparents Helon Mead Stark and Rebekah Kilbourn Stark were married in Portland, Ionia County in Feb 1840.

The family continued to farm and operate a series of mercantiles in Eagle until 1861. At that time most of the Stark clan removed to Bay County and a few to Saginaw County. It seems they were lured to the area by Peter C. Andre of Saginaw - he had married on of the Stark girls, Clarissa in 1846 and was one of Saginaw's early inhabitants. Peter Andre did a lot of real estate investing in Saginaw, Bay, and Midland counties. He developed a piece of property adjacent to the L. L. Hotchkiss mills in Brooks that provided housing for workers at that place. If you look at a current map of Bay City you will still see the original street names; Andre, Julia, Stark - all named for his family connections.

My great grandfather, Helon M. Stark lived at the Brooks site from the 1860s until sometime in the 1880s, when he moved into Bay City. At one time he worked for the J. McGraw & Co and boarded at the L. H. Watrous house. He bought a livery and operated it for just a short time before moving to greener pastures in Cincinnati.

Helon's oldest son, Frederick Granger Stark settled in Pinconning, married and raised eight children, supporting his family by fishing, farming, and acting as the village blacksmith. He died in 1887 of typhoid, as did some of his children.

The cigar store was operated by two other sons of Helon - Harold F. and Edwin P. Stark. I believe the address was 1011 N. Water Street, and part of the family lived in the same building.

Most of the other men, including my grandfather, George W. Stark, engaged in carpentry and home construction.

By the mid 1880s all of these men left for Cincinnati and opened a manufacturing facility the did planning, built doors, sashes, and windows - all in addition to the home construction business.

Notes & Related Pages

Stark, Helon M.
People Referenced
Andre, Peter C.
Hotchkiss, L.L.
McGraw, John
Stark, Clarissa
Stark, Edwin P.
Stark, Fanny Perry Ferguson
Stark, Frederick Granger
Stark, Harold F.
Stark, Helon Mead
Stark, Henry Mead
Stark, Rebekah Kilbourn
Watrous, L.H.
Subjects Referenced
Andre st.
Bay City, MI
Bay Co., MI
Brooks, MI
Cincinnati, OH
Clinton Co., MI
Eagle, MI
Ionia Co., MI
Julia st.
J. McGraw & Co.
L.H. Watrous boarding house
L.L. Hotchkiss & Co.
Midland Co., MI
Pinconning, MI
Portland, MI
Saginaw, MI
Saginaw Co., MI
Stark st.
Water st. N. 1011

PEOPLE HISTORY: Help Us If You Can - Contribute an article on a historical personality.