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EARLY MICHIGAN

MICHIGAN TERRITORY IN 1820

But the third meeting is recorded. It was at Pocahontas Mills, near* Branch, April 2, 1832—over 53 years ago. An interesting feature of this meeting was the auditing of the account of John G. Richardson, the town collector for 1831 and 1832. The amount presented showed he had collected taxes to the amount of $5(5. 82 and had actually paid out $59. 32, leaving his due $2. 50. What a contrast between 1831-2 and 1885 L I think the present assessed valuation of Branch county alone, which is not one tenth of the old town of Green, is $17, 000, 000. This year our taxes are higher than usual, and if they are one per cent on the valuation—and they approximate that probably—then the amount of taxes we pay in 1885 will be about $170, 000. Don't we poor tax ridden modern citizens, when thinking of those halcyon days of low taxes and little property, wish we were back again enjoying the thirties? There is, however, nothing so interesting to me as the consideration of the names and characteristics of the town officials of Green. I know- more about them than I do of the town which they survived. I well remember the ancient collector of taxes, John G. Richardson. My father bought his farm near Bronson village, and he then moved farther east into the woods. He was a strong, healthy hunter, never had the ague, killed many a deer, never did much farm work, spent years in devising a perpetual motion, which never moved. But the greater dream of his life, in that long ago, was to go far away to the Pacific, to Oregon. But he died many years Since on his farm on the west line of Bethel, near Bronson, and never saw his dreams of Oregon or a perpetual motion realized. His widow remarried and I. as solicitor, procured a divorce for her second husband on the ground of desertion. She was, I think, the first white woman who settled in Branch county and the mother of the first white child born in this county, and in that.

MICHIGAN


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