All posts for the month July, 2015

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Ulysses D. Ward residence, 301 N. Butler Boulevard

Ulysses D. Ward was born in Brutus, New York on May 18, 1828 to David and Sarah (née Blackmarr) Ward. At the age of thirteen Ulysses moved to Howell to live with his sister Mrs. Rosalie Thompson. In 1842 Ulysses traveled to the junction of the Grand and Cedar Rivers to trap with his cousin, Edwin Lamphere. Later in 1846 Ulysses’ father died and he returned to New York to care for his mother and manage the family farm. In 1847 he traveled over the Allegany Mountains to cut timber. While there he met Miss , Laura Jeannette Town who he married on September 12, 1850 when he reach the age of twenty two, the couple had seven children; Clarence died 1855, David died 1864, Mary, Lida, Jeannette, Jessie and Edna all survived to adulthood. The couple lived on the farm until 1856 when Ulysses sold the farm and moved to Lansing, Michigan were he started a butcher business. With the start of the Civil War, he enlisted in the Second United States Sharpshooters, Company B. He fought at Rappahannock; White Sulphur Springs, Gainesville, Second Bull Run; South Mountain; Boonsboro; Antietam; Fredericksburg, Gettysburg, Chancellorsville, Wilderness, Spotsylvania, Cold Harbor, Petersburg and was present at Lee’s surrender.

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Ulysses D. Ward residence, 301 N. Butler Boulevard

 During the war Ulysses met Abraham Lincoln who he spent the afternoon shooting targets with, a story he recalled with great relish the rest of his life. On July 17, 1865 he mustered out and retuned to Lansing where he spent two years recovering from his experiences during the war. Frankly Ulysses D. Ward’s service during the war was remarkable, and it is unfortunate that he did not leave a memoir. After the war Ulysses entered into the house moving business, a profession that at one time was a growth industry. On June 22, 1898 Ulysses beloved wife Laura passed away at the family home.[1] Ulysses served as a Lansing alderman for two terms and was an active member of the GAR. Ulysses D. Ward who gave so much to his country died at his home on February 25, 1903. (LJ 2/25/1903, LJ 2/26/1903, SR 2/26/1903 and Portrait 767).

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Ulysses D. Ward residence, 301 N. Butler Boulevard

Along with the Rouse home the Ward residence is the only other home still standing from the 1889 Guide to Lansing. The home was built in 1885 by Ulysses Ward who cut the timber for the residence during the winter of 1884. When driving north on Butler your eye is drawing immediately to the home which is today owned by the Lansing Association of Women’s Clubs (LAWC). The cut stone used in the construction of the home is striking as is the stone arches over the windows. Notice the corbels underneath the eaves and the L shaped porch where the corbels compliment the columns. This home is one of the architectural treasures of Lansing.

[1] Laura Jeanette Ward was born in Watertown, New York on July 29, 1830. SR 6/22/1898.

© Lost Lansing 2015

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Henry Willis Squiers residence, 526 W. Ottawa Street

Henry Willis Squiers was born in Perry, New York on September 15, 1831 to Solomon and Clarisa (née Saenger) Squiers. Henry moved to Lansing in 1870 and opened a grocery store at 111 E. Michigan Avenue where he is listed as an operator of an Anti-Monopoly Grocery. Later he was engaged in the wool and grain trade with at store of the corner of South Washington Avenue and Kalamazoo Street. In 1862 Henry married Betsey M. Hopson, the daughter of Alonzo and Betsey (née Willoughby) Hopson. The couple had no children but raised Henry’s niece Miss Frances Squiers. Henry Willis Squiers passed away at his cottage at Gills Pier, six miles west of Northport, Michigan, on August 28, 1910, his wife Betsey and niece Frances were at his side. [1] SR 8/29/1910 and LJ 8/29/1910.

The Squiers residence was a simple Gabled Ell style structure. The windows are stacked in a symmetrical manner with the metal baluster over the first floor bay window, which gives the illusion of a small porch. The site is now the home of the First Presbyterian Church


[1] Henry’s name sometimes appears as Squires, the correct spelling is Squiers. For Betsey death see LSJ 9/23/1924.

© Lost Lansing 2015

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John F. Rouse residence, 920 N. Washington Avenue

Born in Ann Arbor, Michigan to John and Catherine (née Leadley) Rouse on July 28, 1851, John F. Rouse became one of the most respected citizens in Lansing and Ingham County. In 1860 the family moved to Chicago where John Rouse Sr. worked as a cooper. In 1861 eleven-year-old John suffered a devastating accident while helping his father at the Jones & Chapin copper shop. His left arm was severed in a freak accident a disability that John worked to overcome his entire life. In 1864 John’s father enlisted in the Union Army and served throughout the Civil War. It was during the Civil War that Catherine Rouse moved the family to Lansing, Michigan to be near family. John received an appointment as a messenger in the state Capitol and attended Lansing Commercial College. After graduation he studied telegraphy and worked as a telegraph operator for the Detroit, Lansing & Lake Michigan Railroad Company at the Lansing House.

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John F. Rouse residence, 920 N. Washington Avenue

The Lansing House was the center of political activity in Lansing, and John capitalized on this and was elected to the post of Lansing City Clerk where he served from 1877-1878 and 1882-1886 as a Democrat, an unheard of feat in the staunchly Republican city, which reinforces the sediment that John was a man respected for his honesty and work ethic. In 1888 John was elected to the position of Ingham County Clerk where he served four years. On May13, 1880, John married Miss Catherine Sattler, the daughter of Charles L. and Barbara (née Hux) Sattler. John and Catherine had one child, Nellie B. Rouse. After leaving public service in 1896, John established the real estate and insurance firm on Rouse & Sattler with Louis L Sattler, his brother in law. After John’s death the firm merged with F.C. Ruch’s insurance business and it was known as Ruch, Rouse & Sattler. By all accounts John was a respected politician, businessman and father, he was active is fraternal organizations and was a member of the Royal Arcanum and the Loyal Americans, Capitol Assembly 635 as a charter member. On May 2, 1907, John who had been in poor health for the past year decided to mow his lawn, in the course of which he suffered an internal hemorrhage and passed away that evening at his home.[1]

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John F. Rouse residence, 920 N. Washington Avenue

One of the two homes from the 1899 guide that is still standing, the John F. Rouse home is hard to define a style to describe; it seems to be a mixture of a Victorian and Queen Anne style. Although the home is difficult to categorize, it does have some pleasing elements. In the etching and first photograph you can see the ornate scrollwork under the peak of the third floor dormers. What is confusing is the double roof edge that is present in the etching and the first photograph. In the etching you can see the corbels underneath the upper roofline, in the first photograph they have been remove while in the second photograph the intermediate roofline has been removed. The stone lintels above the windows were an expensive element that essentially tells that passerby based on the sheer number of these, that this was a home of someone important. What can barely be made out in both images are the sunburst elements at the pediment of both porches a feature that is still present on the residence today.

[1] LJ 5/3/1907, SR 5/3/1907 and Portrait and Biographical Album of Ingham and Livingston Counties, Michigan, 279.

© Lost Lansing 2015