Heritage \ Writings \

William Mead Davenport (1844-1930)
Born in Spencertown, N.Y. In lumbering and hotel business in Bay City, MI.

1884 biography. - Added January, 2012.

History of Newayco County, Michigan - 1884


William M. Davenport, of the mercantile firm of Davenport & Co., at Alleyton, is the eldest son of George and Caroline (Mead) Davenport, natives of New York. His mother died July 20, 1883, and his father is still a resident of the Empire State. The family comprised three daughters and four sons, six of whom lived to adult age.

Mr. Davenport, the subject of this sketch, was born in Spencertown, Columbia Co., N. Y., May 30, 1844. Until he was 19 years old he was engaged in acquiring his education at the primary schools, the Spencertown Academy, and the Clinton Liberal Institute. His first employ was as clerk with Alleyton and Whitwood, of Hornellsville, N. Y. (Alleyton received its name from James Alley, of the firm name, he being the founder of the town) He was in their service three years, when he began the business of merchant tailoring at Hornellsville, in which he continued two years. In 18__ he sold out and came to Bay City, Mich., where, in company with his uncle, James H. Mead, he built a shingle-mill, which they operated two and a half years, when Mr. Mead became sole proprietor by purchase. His next enterprise was in the joint management, which another uncle, S. A. Vandeusen, of the Frazer House. This relation existed about 18 months. Once again selling out he formed a partnership with R. F. White, in the sale of crockery and house-furnishing goods, which he managed four years and then sold out once more. He returned to Hornellsville and became book-keeper about two years in a dry-goods house. In January, 1880, he came to Newaygo County, and located at Alleyton, where he has since been operating in trade as indicted by his firm relation. The annual transactions of the concern aggregate about $64,000. He is also connected with Joseph A. Proctor in a lumber and shingle-mill at Alleyton.

He is independent in politics, and has held various municipal positions, among them Treasurer of Everett, School Inspector and School Assessor. He is a member of the Masonic Order and of the Ancient Order of the United Workmen.

Mr. Davenport was married at Hornellsville, Nov. 1, 1871, to Mary E., daughter of Samuel C. Jillson, natives of the State of New York. Of five children born of this union three are living; they are, Russell R., Bessie J, and George S. Laura died when five months old and another child survived its birth but a few hours.

Additional Notes.

    1868-9 Directory: Bay City, Mich.

  • Davenport, W.M., shingle manufacturer, bds 619 S. Adams.
  • Mead, James H., shingle manufacturer, h 619 S. Adams.
  • Van Deusen, S. A. - (G.W. Wesley & Co.) Fraser House

    1870 (Jun. 17) Census: Bay City, Mich. (Fraser Hotel)

  • Vandeusen, Stuart age 30, b. New York proprietor of hotel.
  • Davenport, William age 25, b. New York proprietor of hotel
  • Vandeusen, Nancy age 32, b. New York - keeping house.

    900 Census: Bellaire village, Antrim, Mich.

  • Davenport,William M. - b. May, 1844 New York
  • Mary E., wife b. Mar., 1849 New York (married 1872)
  • Russell R., son b. Oct., 1877 New York
  • Bessie J., daughter b. Nov., 1881 Mich.
  • George S., son b. Jul., 1883 Mich.

    1910 Census: Portland Ward 8, Multnomah, Oregon.

  • Davenport, William age 66, b. New York.
  • Mary C., wife age 61, b. New York.
  • Russell R., son age 32, b. New York
  • Josephine, daughter-in-law, age 24, b. Oregon
  • Bessie, daughter age 28, b. Mich.
  • George, son age 26, b. Mich.
  • Marie, daughter-in-law age 21, b. Mich.

    1930 Oregon Deaths:

  • William Mead Davenport, age 86, died July 8, 1930. Wife Mary Ester Davenport. Parents George Davenport and Caroline Mead.
Related Notes/Pages

Related Pages:
Fraser House
People Referenced
Alley, James
Davenport, Bessie J. (dau)
Davenport, Geo. (father)
Davenport, Geo. S. (son)
Davenport, Josphine (d-inlaw)
Davenport, Marie (d-inlaw)
Davenport, Russell R. (son)
Davenport, Wm. M. (subject)
Jillson, Mary E (wife)
Jillson, Samuel C. (f-inlaw)
Mead, Caroline (mother)
Mead, James (uncle)
Proctor, Joseph A.
Vandeusen, Nancy
Vandeusen, S.A. (uncle)
White, R. F.
Subjects Referenced
Alleyton, MI
Antrim Co., MI
Bay City, MI
Belliar Village, MI
Clinton Liberal Inst.
Columbian Co., NY
Davenport & Co.
Fraser House
G.W. Wesley & Co.
Hornellsville, NY
Multnomah, OR
Newagco Co., MI
Spencertown, NY
Spencertown Academy
WRITINGS: History As It Was Written Then.