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Levi Johnson (1846-?)
Born in Clayton, N.Y., where he learn trade of ship-carpenter, worked for F.W. Wheeler.

1892 Biography. (Added Dec., 2009)

The History of Saginaw and Bay Counties, Michigan, 1892


Levi Johnson, who is foreman of woodwork in the ship-yards of F. W. Wheeler since December 4, 1866. He is one of the oldest ship carpenters in the State, and is will known as a fine mechanic and an upright, honorable man. He was born May 4, 1846, in Clayton, N. Y. His father, Jewell Johnson, was a native of Canada and by trade a baker. He served three years in the United States Regular Army just before the Florida War, in which he enlisted as a soldier, but afterward served his regiment as a baker. He was of French descent. His death took place in Clayton in 1883. The mother of our subject, whose maiden name was Julia St. Thomas, was born in Brockville, Canada. Her father, Francis St. Thomas, was also a native of Canada, and of French descent. She was a resident of Clayton for sixty-six years, and was a member of the Catholic Church.

Of the eight children in the parental family our subject was the eldest, and at fifteen years of age he was apprenticed to a ship-carpenter, S. G. Johnson, in Clayton, and served for three years. At the end of this time he went to Oswego, remaining for three months; thence to Cleveland, Ohio, and afterwards to Cincinnati, and then for a time was in Cleveland again, returning to Clayton, and coming to Detroit in 1865; thence to Marine City until the fall of 1866, when he came to Saginaw and began working his trade in the ship-yards of C. Wheeler. He assisted in building the Flint & Pere Marquette Railroad bridge, and also the barge “P. G. Lester” and schooner “H. C. Potter.” He was then employed by D. W. Rust & Co., working for them for a number of years and becoming foreman, assisting in building the barges “D. K. Klint,” “L. C. Butts,” “Buckeye State,” “D. W. Rust,” and the tug “Charles Lee.” In 1881 Mr. Johnson came to Bay City, and was employed as foreman for F. Wheeler, under F. W. E. Young. He returned again to Saginaw, becoming foreman for L. E. Mason, under Tom Arnold, and assisted in building a large number of vessels. He then became superintendent of Mason's whole fleet at Port Huron, overhauling and repairing them for six months. He then double-decked the steamer “C. H. Green” and two schooners. Following this he kept a sample-room for three years. In 1885 he came to West Bay City and became foreman in the ship-yards, where he is at present employed, and in which he was foreman at the building of a large number of vessels. In April, 1891, he was appointed foreman of wood-work, and at present has fives vessels on hand.

Mr. Johnson was married in East Saginaw, Miss Maggie Wilbur, a native of this State, becoming his wife. To them were born four children, Henry, Fannie, Willie and Levi, Jr. Mr. Johnson is a member of the Knights of the Maccabees, and is a Republican in politics. He is very popular among his associates, and leads an active business life.

Additional Notes.

    1893 – Directory Bay City, Mich.

  • Johnson, Levi F, foreman, res 607 Litchfield.

    1900 – Census West Bay City, Mich. (607 Litchfield st.)

  • Johnson, Levi – b. May 1846 New York, ship builder.
  • Maggie – wife, b. Mar. 1851 Mich.
  • Levie Jr – son, b. Oct. 1885, Mich.
  • Mary – daughter, b. Jul. 1879, Mich.
Related Pages/Notes

Related Pages
F.W. Wheeler Co..
People Referenced
Arnold, Tom
Johnson, Fannie (dau.)
Johnson, Henry (son)
Johnson, Jewel (father)
Johnson, Levi (subject)
Johnson, Levi Jr (son)
Johnson, S.G.
Johnson, Willie (son)
Mason, L.E.
St Thomas, Francis
St Thomas, Julia (mother)
Wheeler, Chesley
Wheeler, Frank W.
Wilbur, Maggie (wife)
Young, F.W.E.
Subjects Referenced
Bay City, MI
Brockville, Canada
Clayton, NY
Cincinnati, OH
Cleveland, OH
Detroit, MI
D.W. Rust & Co.
East Saginaw, MI
F.W. Wheeler Co.
Marine City, MI
Oswego, NY
Port Huron, MI
Saginaw, MI
U.S. army
West Bay City, MI
WRITINGS: History As It Was Written Then.