History of Lenawee County, Michigan - Book 2, Page 10

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The father learned the trade of brick making 'in England and after coming to the United States in 1850 located in Cleveland, Ohio, where he engaged in the same line. In 1864 he removed his family to a farm which he had acquired by purchase in Riga township, Lewanee county, while he himself stayed in Cleveland and continued his brick making. -In 1867 he managed a brick yard in Palmyra township, for one year, continuing to reside in Riga township. While located there he made the brick for the first brick store erected in Blissfield village and 'for the old school house on the west side of the same village. In 1868 he purchased a farm in Blissfield township and has since resided there. Up to 1887 he conducted a brickyard in connection with his agricultural pursuits, but in that year he withdrew from active participation in the business and has since devoted his time to the management of his farm. Twelve children were the issue of the marriage of William and Mary Ann (Turner) Atkin, namely: Eliza (Atkin) Pratt, born Aug. 13, 1853; William, born Oct. 2, 1854, died in September, 1855; Lucy (Atkin) Ware, born Feb. 6, 1856; Clara (Atkin) Pratt, born Jan. 14, 1858; George, born Dec. 14, 1859; William T.; lly (Atkin) Raymond, born Aug. 24, 1863, died in the state of Washington, Oct. 7, 1901; Lewis Edward, .born Aug. 9, 1866; Mary (Atkin) Miller, now deceased, born June 21, 1868; Matilda, born Aug. 29, 1870, died March 23, 1893; Eva Viola, born June 2, 1874, died June 4, 1875; and Arthur Byron, born Dec. 22, 1877. William T. Atkin received his educational advantages in district school No. 4 of Blissfield township, and when he had completed his scholastic training he went west to Red Cloud, Neb., where for three years he was in the employ of Ludlow & Son, brick manufacturers. He accumulated a goodly sum by entering into a contract with the firm whereby he made all their brick at a stated figure per thousand. Ile then returned to Michigan and with his brother, Lewis Edward, leased their father's brickyard. For four years the brothers successfully conducted the business and then William T. disposed of his interest and removed to the farm in Deerfield township on which he now resides. For a time he made over a million brick each year, but of late there has been less call for that product and he has devoted himself more especially to the manufacture of tile, the output of which has about trebled in the past few years. All the clay used is taken from his own bank, which is situated on the Raisin river about midway between the villages of Deerfield and Blissfield. In his political relations Mr. Atkin is a staunch adherent of the Democratic party, and as such has held several positions of public trust. In 1897 he was first elected supervisor of the township, and held the office continuously for seven years; in 1894 he was made county poor commissioner, but resigned before his term expired, and in the spring of 1905 was again elected supervisor. He has since been the incumbent of that office. Mr. Atkin is also a stockholder in the Deerfield State Bank, one of the thriving institutions of the county. Fraternally he is allied with the Blue Lodge of the Masonic order. On April 22, 1887, was solemnized Mr. Atkin's marriage to Miss Lena Miller, born at Sandusky, Ohio, April 6, 1860, the daughter of Christopher and Lucy (Glaser) Miller.

Mr. and Mrs. Miller were both natives of Germany, who located in Blissfield township after a short residence in Sandusky, Ohio. They are now both deceased, the mother having passed away on March 1, 1904, and the father on Thanksgiving day, Nov. 29, 1906. Mrs. Atkin, who is a devout member of the German Lutheran church, received her educational advantages in the common schools of Blissfield township and the German school in Riga village, which she

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History of Lenawee County
published by The Western Historical Society in 1909. Book 1
Book 2

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History of Lenawee County
Lenawee History

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