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Retyped and added to the WWW by Mark J. Alexander from Los Angeles, California now living in Rochester, Minnesota
last updated   6-19-08

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Alexander Family History

    1. John ALEXANDER married Agnes Buffen on 10th may 1611 at a village called
Easton Royal, Wiltshire some 2-3 miles from Ramsbury.

They had four children
a) Walter, Bapt. Jan. 9, 1616
b) William, Bapt. Mar. 20, 1622
c) Francis, Bapt. Oct. 9, 1622
d) John, Bapt. Mar. 6, 1631
All four were baptised at Easton Royal.

    2. John ALEXANDER (d) above had one child with his wife Doritie

    3. John ALEXANDER Bapt. Feb. 2, 1659 at Easton Royal, had one child with his wife, Sarah Perry One of their children was;

    4. John Alexander Bapt. Jan. 16, 1688 at Easton Royal - Married Oct. 31, 1708 to Elizabeth Braxtone (Brackstone) at Ramsbury Parish, England. One of their children;

    5. Edward Alexander - Bapt. Aug. 20, 1727 at Ramsbury Parish, England. Married , Nov. 13, 1757 to Elizabeth Braxtone (Brackstone). (a namesake of the earlier Elizabeth Braxtone.) One of their children was;

    6. John Alexander - Bapt. July 5, 1761 Ramsbury. Died, Jan. 7, 1842. Married, 1st. Hannah Smith. Jan. 22 1789. They had 12 children. Married, 2nd to Mary Anne Day, Dec. 26 1815. to them were born 6 children. The 7th child of John and Hannah Alexander was;

    7. John Alexander - Bapt. May 13, 1792 Ramsbury. Died at Rochester. Married, 1st. Phoebe Pike, 4 children. Married 2nd. Harriet Pike, (a half sister of Phoebe.) To John and Harriet Alexander were born 8 children, one of the sons being Joseph Alexander, born May 14, 1826 at Ramsbury Died, Jan. 28, 1897 at Rochester, Minn.

    8. Joseph Alexander - Continued in the Alexander Family history.

Thanks to Shaun Morley (who is a distant relative and found this web page) for his information he has.

Page 1



    A history of the Alexander Family

by Roy J. Alexander

   Joseph Alexander was born in Ramsbury Parish, Wiltshire England on 14 May 1826 (baptized on 4 June), the sixth child and fourth son of John and Harriet Pike Alexander.

    Joseph and Hannah Knight were married 29 April 1844 in the church at Ramsbury, both age 19 and of Ramsbury. Joseph was listed as a carpenter son of John Alexander, also a carpenter. Hannah was the daughter of George Knight, a miller.

    Joseph and his bride Hannah came to America the year they were married. It is probable that Joseph's father, John, his brothers and sisters, friends and neighbors came on the same ship, or these others may have come the following year when Joseph made a return trip to England.

    The family remained together for a while in Albany, New York. Then some of the brothers and sisters went west into Minnesota and Wisconsin territories, into Iowa and all the way to California and Washington. Some remained in New York and many descendents (descendants) still live in the eastern states.

    Joseph Alexander pushed westward and was living near Watertown, Wisconsin on a farm in 1844 when his son was born on 30 September. He probably lived there about 10 years, as another son, Joseph E. was born there 25 December 1854 and later children were born in Rochester, Minnesota. While living in Watertown he ran some sort of general mercantile business and also sold and repaired shoes. In his day book of the period from 1848 to 1852 there are numerous entries for leather, hemp, tacks and mending shoes. His entries for 1848 indicated that he was still using the English money system, pounds, shilling and pence.

    The population of Watertown in 1844 was probably about 1,400 when Joseph Alexander left in 1854 it was about 4,000.

    At the time Joseph settled there the country-side was heavily timbered and roads and trails were being cut through the forests. All provisions had to be brought in by wagon from Milwaukee, 45 miles to the east.

    There were many Indians in the area at the time; the Winnebagos on one side of the river with the Powawatamis on the other side. One of the tribes was under Chief Black Hawk.

    While living in Watertown Joseph and Hannah became parents of five children; George John, Jabez Newton, Mary Ann, Hannah Belinda and Joseph E. Jabez Newton was born in Ramsbury Parish, England in 1848 while Hannah was making a return visit to her home there. The first child of Joseph and Hannah, also named Jabez, was born in England, brought to America as an infant, died at the age of about two and was buried in Watertown. Harriet Pike Alexander, wife of Joseph's father, John Alexander was also buried there.

Page 2



    One has to wonder why Joseph Alexander decided to leave his own family, other relatives and friends and again head westward. He left Watertown October the sixth 1854 to seek a home in Minnesota. After a long and weary tramp he reached LaCrosse ( by highway today about 150 miles.) There he became acquainted with a Mr. Wesly Ilen and his father who were on there way to Oronoco, Minnesota, and they wanted him to ride with them. The next day they crossed the river on the ferry and camped by a stream. Several of the campers were sick and as he had medicine with him and he understood what herbs to administer to the sick, he practiced medicine for the first time in Minnesota.

    Joseph Alexander arrived in Rochester on 14th of October 1854. His first business activity in Rochester was the operation of a saw mill. Leonard's History of Olmsted County says:
   "Rochester's first manufacturing industry was a saw mill built by Joseph Alexander and William Goldsworth, a son-in-law of Judge Olds, in 1855. It consisted of a scaffold six or eight feet high to which logs were raised and sawed by a long saw worked by a man on the ground and one on the platform., a primitive plan in common use in China. It did a large business and turned out as much as 500 feet a day. There was a ready demand for all it could manufacture. A later enterprise, a furniture factory burned down in 1863, after which the power was used for a feed mill and woolen mill."

    Joseph continued his practice as an herb doctor while in Rochester. Also, being deeply religious, he was often called upon to perform the acts of a minister during the first years he was in Rochester and before any regular minister had appeared in the settlement.

    At one time Joseph Alexander built and operated a saw mill about three miles west of Pine Island on the middle branch of the Zumbro River. An agreement was made in 1861 between Alexander and Goldsworthy to remove the machinery from Rochester to the site near Pine Island. Joseph and Hannah built a house near the new mill and it was there that their last child, William, was born in 1870.

    Joseph Alexander started the operation of his grist mill about 1873 or 1874. He used the same water power that ran the woolen mill and the two mills were attached. It probably about this time that the wooden water wheel fell into disuse. Joseph Alexander's power came from a horizontal wheel, similar to a turbine. The mill was first run by water power and later converted to steam power.

    The woolen mill was established in 1872 by Joseph Alexander and W. G. Barley. Some time later Mr. Alexander took over sole ownership and operation of the mill. The mill manufactured yarn, blankets and flannel; made wool into batts, and single yarn to be used in making wool cloth; made wool into rolls about 3 feet long and 1/2" in diameter for use on old fashioned spinning wheels.

Page 3



    Joseph and Hannah Alexander were the parents of thirteen children.

    The first child was Jabez Hezakiah born in Ramsbury Parish, England. He was brought to America by his parents and he died in Watertown, Wisconsin on 25 October 1846 at about 2 years of age.

   George John Alexander was born 26 September 1846 at Watertown, Wisconsin.

    George served with the Union Forces during the Civil War: enrolled 28 March 1865, discharged 10 June 1865 ; member of Company G. First Battalion, Infantry, Minnesota. According to Sarah Nelson Kelly, he was at the battle of Lookout Mountain, and was also in Andersonville prison.

    George married Hattie Thackeray and to them were born six children:

         Albert G. Alexander         Minnie Alexander
         Gertrude Alexander          Florence Alexander
         Grace Alexander              Nora Alexander

   Jabez Newton Alexander was born in 1848. Joseph and Hannah Alexander were living in Watertown, Wisconsin and during the summer Hannah returned to England for a visit, and while there her son was born. Joseph, in Watertown, made the following entry in his day-book. "My 3rd, son was boorn September, Tusday at 15 minets past 23 O-Clock 1848."

    Jabez Alexander married Lucinda Dunnette 1 January 1887. Lucinda Alexander died 29 August 1939, aged 80 years.

    Jabez worked for a lumber yard ( possibly Botsford. ) He drove a team of horses, delivering materials and it was fun to hook a ride back to school on his wagon when he came home at noon. Later on in life he was employed by the Park Department caring for the animals in Mayo Park Zoo.

    To Jabez and Lucinda Alexander were born five children:

         Walter Newton Alexander         Blanche Alexander
         Goldie Alexander                      Ruth Alexander
         Evelyen Alexander

   Mary Ann Alexander came to Rochester in 1854 with her parents when she was five years old. She had been born on 13 January 1850 in Watertown, Wisconsin. On 19 August 1873 she united in marriage with William Merton Eastlick. Mr. Eastlick was the Boy Hero of the Lake Shetek Indian Massacre at Lake Shetek in 1872.

Page 4



    Aunt Mary carried on the practice of herb doctoring, started by her father, Joseph Alexander, and was often called on to care for the sick and injured of early Rochester. She also practiced as a midwife, and on many occasions was called by Doctor W. M. Mayo to help him with patients.

    Wm. M. Eastlick died about 1877-1878. Mary died at her home, 852 Ninth Ave. S. E. ( Beaver St. ) at the age of 82.

    Mary Ann and William Merton Eastlick had one son:

       Merton William

    Mary Alexander Eastlick married a second time to Augustine Fredrick Nelson on 2 February 1879. He was born in Denmark 10 May 1852 and came to America when he was 19 years old settling in Rochester.

    He was the proprietor of the Rochester Soap Company. Before opening this business he had charge of soap-making at the Rochester State Hospital.

    To Mary and Fred Nelson a son, Carl Peter Nelson, was born. He died at the age of two years. To them also five daughters:

         Lena Nelson                  Mattie Nelson
         Harriet Ida Nelson         Sara Nelson
         Anna Nelson

   Hannah Belinda Alexander was born in Watertown, Wisconsin 2 February 1853. She died in Rochester, Minnesota 25 September 1857 at 4 1/2 years of age.

   Joseph E. Alexander was born in Watertown, Wisconsin on 25 December 1854 ( Christmas Day ) and was brought to Rochester as an infant. After marrying Delphine Van Hook on 12 June 1879 the couple pushed westward to McCauleyville, Minnesota near the Dakota line, where he became a contractor. He returned to Rochester in 1898 to take over the operation of his father's mills which he operated for several years.

    Joseph left Rochester in October 1897 for Fort Abercrombie where he secured land. He was engaged in the contracting business for twenty years and then returned to Rochester and the milling business. He died 22 January 1930 at age of 75.

    To Joseph and Delphine Alexander were born eight children:

         Genevieve ( died in factory )        Margaret M. Alexander
         Laura Alexander                          Eva Alexander
         Todd Alexander                          Maurice Alexander
         Clara Maybelle Alexander           Harrison ( died in factory )

Page 5



   Elizabeth May Alexander was born at Rochester, Minnesota 29 April 1857, one of the first white children born in Olmsted County. Before her marriage, Elizabeth worked in her father's woolen mill on Bear Creek, in Southeast Rochester.

    Elizabeth was married on 19 August 1879 to Andrew L. Holm who came to America form Dorup, Denmark in 1871. He came to Rochester in 1872, worked on a farm for a while, and then worked at Alexander's woolen mill where he met Elizabeth Alexander.

    Andrew was appointed to the City Council in 1907, and reelected, serving from 1911 to 1915. His long association with Oakwood Cemetery began 1888. He later became Actuary or Superintendent until 1934 when he was placed on pension, although still continuing to act as Actuary. Andrew L. Holm died at Rochester 19 September 1938. Elizabeth died 11 January 1930.

    Elizabeth and Andrew Holm were the parents of four children:

         Ida H. Holm         Merton J. Holm
         Georgia Holm       William A. Holm

    Born in April of 1859 at Rochester, Minnesota, Jane Alexander was always known as "Aunt Jennie." 0n 5 January 1881 Jane was married to Elmer S. Gould. He was born in Whitewater, Wisconsin and came to Rochester in 1880. The couple lived in Winona before settling in Rochester at 613 Ninth Ave. S.E.

    Elmer Gould was a plumber and steam engineer by trade. He worked for the Stebbins Hardware firm for a good many years and later conducted his own plumbing business. While working for Stebbins he also acted as their chauffeur. He drove their automobile, the first steam car in Rochester, probably a Stanly Steamer.

    Elmer Gould died 14 February 1943 at Rochester, Minn. aged 82 years. Aunt Jennie had died in 1917, aged 58.

    Elmer and Jane Gould were the parents of two children:

         Charles W. Gould         Lottie Gould

   Charles A. Alexander was born at Rochester, Minnesota on 14 May 1861. at one time he was employed by the Chicago Great Western Railroad and later he worked as a steam engineer on hoisting equipment for Garfield Schwartz a Rochester contractor. In later years he was employed by the Rochester Park Board, caring for the animals in the Mayo Park Zoo.

    He was married 20 March 1888 to Anna Steeland at Winona, Minnesota. Anna was the sister of Alice Steeland who was married

Page 6



to Charlie's brother Henry Alexander. Anna Alexander was born in Stavanger, Norway on 16 March 1866 and came to America as an infant.

    Charles A. Alexander died 19 August 1949 at Rochester, Minnesota.

    Charles and Anna Alexander were the parents of three sons:

         Walter A. Alexander         Arthur Alexander
         Bert Alexander

   Ida Alexander was born in Rochester, Minnesota 15 May 1863 and died in Rochester on 2 February 1885 at the age of 22 years.

   Mattie Alexander was born at Rochester, Minnesota 25 September 1865. Mattie was married to Arlington Carson Howard, Arlington was the son of John Howard and Melvina Hall Howard, who came from England to Indiana, and from there to Minnesota in a covered wagon, The family settled on a farm near Marion, Minnesota. Arlington Howard was born at Rochester, Minnesota 14 December 1859, he died 31 December 1932 at the age of 73 and was buried at Stanley, North Dakota.

    Record of interment, Oakwood Cemetery, Rochester shows:

    Matei Howard, age 29 years, 7 months, 25 days, of Rochester, American , of English descent, married, died May 20th, 1895.

    Mattie and Arlineton Howard were the parents of four daughters:

         Marian Minnie Howard         Hazel Howard
         Anna Howard                       Theodate Howard

   Henry Edward Alexander was born 18 July 1868 in Rochester, Minnesota. He was married 2 August 1893 to Alice Steeland at Winona, Minnesota. Alice Steeland was born 10 February 1868 in Stavanger, Norway and came to America as an Infant.

    Henry Alexander worked in the old woolen mill operated by his father on the west side of Bear Creek. He was employed by Heffron and Fitzgerals and supervised the construction of churches in Winona, Owatonna, Janesville, Waseca and Mankato. Prior to this he constructed many railroad bridges in the vicinity of Rochester. He was a carpenter foreman for many years and supervised that work on many of Rochester's largest buildings, including hospitals.

    Henry Alexander died 23 October 1936 at Rochester, Minn. at the age of 68. Alice died 31 October 1950 at Rochester.

    Henry and Alice Alexander were parents of five children:

         Maud Alexander                 Clifford Alexander ) twins
         Roy Joseph Alexander         Clinton Alexander )
         George Knight Alexander

Page 7



    William Alexander - Merton William Alexander was born 23 May 1870 west of Pine Island, Minnesota. He always went by the name William Alexander to avoid confusion with his contemporary Merton William Eastlick.

    He was married on 30 June 1901 to Florence Perkins at Pine Island. Florence Perkins was born 12 July 1871 at Pine Island. Their son Fay Alexander says that his mother's family records go back perfectly to the year 1199 in England.

    To William and Florence Alexander were born two children:

         Fay Alexander         Marian Alexander

    At one time eight of the ten living brothers and sisters were living in Southeast Rochester; George, Jabez, Mary, Joseph E., Jane, Charles, Henry and William. Another sister, Elizabeth was living in Northeast Rochester, and sister Mattie lived on a farm a few miles south of Rochester.

    Henry and Charles each had three lots facing east on Beaver St. (now 9th Ave. S.E.) Henry to the north was 707 Beaver St. and Charles to the south was 717 Beaver St.

    Jabez Alexander lived in the middle of the 700 block on Oakwood St. (now 7th Ave. S.E.) he also owned the lot in back, facing Pearl St. (now 8th Ave. S.E.) where the barn was located.

    Mary, Mrs. A. F. Nelson lived at 852 Beaver St. (now 9th Ave. S.E.) They owned about eight lots at that location, half of them in back on Bear Creek.

    Jane, Mrs. Elmer Gould lived at 613 Beaver St. (now 9th Ave. S.E.)

    Joseph E. Alexander lived on the corner of College St. and Cherry St. (now 4th St. and 6th Ave. S.E. the southeast corner) his mill was across 6th Ave. to the west.

    Elizabeth, Mrs. Andrew Holm lived at 41 N. Oakwood St. (now 9th Ave. N.E.) in a residence owned by the Oakwood Cemetery Assn. of which Mr. Holm was the actuary.

    William lived on the corner of Orange St. and College St. (now 10th Ave. and 4th St. S.E.) the S.W. corner. His First house was on the second lot from the corner on 10th Ave. and later he built a larger house on the corner lot.

    George Alexander lived on the south side of College St. in the 700 block. College St. is now 4th St. S.E.

    Joseph Alexander owned a great deal of property in Southeast Rochester. In 1896, the year before his death, tax records show that he paid taxes on 101 lots in the area.

Page 8



   Ethel J. Roessler born to Joephine and Lewis Roessler at
    Hitterdal, Minn. Aug. 29, 1907
(married)
   George Knight Alexander Born in Rochester, Minn. Sept. 26, 1906
(and had three children)
   David G. Alexander born in Clinton, Iowa March 28, 1929
   John Knight Alexander born in Rochester, Minn. Sept. 24, 1931
   Sue Alexander born in Rochester, Minn. Oct. 13, 1936





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