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Charles B. Cottrell (1829-1885)
Historical Biographies.
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  • Transcribed July 2005.

    History of the Lake Huron Shore, 1883, H.R. Page, Chicago, IL
    Bay County



    CHARLES B. COTTRELL first visited Lower Saginaw in 1850, and settled here in 1854. He was born in Cottrellville, St. Clair Co., Mich., July 81, 1829. His grandfather was one of the earliest pioneers of that region, and from him the place took its name.

    Charles remained at home until sixteen years of age, when he went away to provide for himself. He lived for a time with an uncle at Port Huron, attending school Summers and teaching Winters. Afterwards he attended, the Romeo Academy for two years.

    About 1850 he went as clerk on the steamboat “Columbia,” and that year saw what has since become Bay City, for the first time. From 1852 to 1854 he kept books for the late Capt. E. B. Ward, in Detroit, and was going as clerk on the steamer “Detroit,” but while on his way to meet the boat it sank, and he came back to Bay City as Capt. Ward’s agent. After locating here he formed a partnership with Julius B. Hart, and they kept the warehouse and were agents for the line of boats. The warehouse stood on the present site of the Maxwell Block. In 1855 he went out of the warehouse, and, in company with his brother, kept a general store.

    In 1859 they removed to Sebewaing, Huron Co., and continued business about a year. Charles then sold to his brother. He was elected register of deeds of Huron County, and held the office two years. Was then appointed to transcribe the records of Sanilac and Tuscola Counties, was elected county treasurer, and held the office for eight years.

    Upon his retiring from the office, the Board of Supervisors passed the following resolution, by a unanimous vote -

    “Whereas, a few evil-disposed persons have, from sinister motives, circulated reports derogatory to the reputation of the present county treasurer of this county, and

    “Whereas, such reports have been, by a close scrutiny, rigid investigation and full report of the condition of the county treasury. branded as false and unfounded;

    “Therefore, be it resolved, that we hereby express our full approval of the honest, faithful and able manner in which C. B. Cottrell has discharged the duties of the office of treasurer of this county for the term of eight years last past, as a just tribute to an able official.”

    In 1868 Mr. Cottrell was elected county superintendent of schools. In 1878 he resigned that office and returned to Bay City, and engaged in insurance, which he still continues, doing a very large and prosperous business.

    He is a very prominent member of the Masonic fraternity, and one of the oldest Masons in the city.

    He was married May 27, 1869, to Miss Bettie Rogers, daughter of the late Thomas Rogers, one of the early pioneers of Bay County. Their family residence since 1875 has been on the corner of Eighth and Farragut Streets.

    Mr. Cottrell is something of a linguist, speaking quite an assortment of Indian dialects, and is said to be the best story-teller in the Valley.

    Additional Notes:

      1869 - Michigan Marriages: Bay City, Bay, MI.
      Date: May 17, 1869.
      Groom: Charles B. Cottrell, age 39.
      Bride: Bettie Rogers, age 29.

      1870 - Census: Port Austin, Huron, MI.
      Cottrell, Charles B. - b. 1829-30, MI.
      Bettie, wife - b. 1839-40, MI.
      Charles, son - b. 1869-70, MI.

      1880 - Census: Bay City, Bay, MI.
      Cotrell, Charles b. - age 50 - life &fur ins agt
      Bettie, wife - age 41
      Charles, son - age 10
      Minnie, dau. - age 16

      1885 - Michigan Deaths, Bay City, Bay, MI.
      Charles B. Cottrell died Aug. 8, 1885 - insurance agent

  • Related Pages/Notes

    Related Pages:
    1847 Residents of Bay Co.
    Pine Ridge Cemetery
    People Referenced
    Cottrell, Charles B. (subject)
    Cottrell, Charles (son)
    Cottrell, Minnie (dau)
    Hart, Julius B.
    Rodgers, Bettie (wife)
    Rodgers, Thomas
    Ward, E.B., Capt.
    Subjects Referenced
    Bay City, MI
    Bay Co., MI
    Detroit, MI
    Huron Co., MI
    Indian dialects
    Maxwell block
    Lower Saginaw, MI
    Port Huron, MI
    Romeo Academy
    Sanilac Co., MI
    Sebewaing, MI
    St. Clair Co., MI
    Steamer Detroit
    Tuscola Co., MI
    WRITINGS: History As It Was Written Then.