Sylvanus Everts, Obituary/Death NoticePorter County obituaries and death notices . . . .

Sylvanus Everts


EVERTS. -- Tuesday, Sept. 17, 1878, at the residence of Mrs. Haas in Valparaiso, Sylvanus Everts, M. D., in the 91st year of his age.

Dr. Everts, the subject of the above notice, some time since began to give some account of his own life, which was taken down as he related it, by his daughter, Mrs. Haas. Owing to various interruptions the account was never completed, bringing down the history only to his seventeenth year:

"I was born in the town of Castleton, Vermont, on the 22d of October, 1787. My father, Ambrose Everts, was born in 1759. His father, Sylvanus Everts, after whom I was named, was a High Church minister, and his wife was a sister of Governor Chittenden, the first Governor of Vermont.

My father was apprenticed to the blacksmith trade at fourteen years of age. In 1776 he enlisted in the army, and served in the Revolutionary war till the declaration of peace in 1783. In 1784 he married Achsa Bingham, grand daughter of the first president of Dartmouth College. I was the second son. On the 11th of September 1795, my father started for Ohio, taking all his family and possessions in a two horse wagon. He reached the Monongahela River at what was then called Old Redstone Fort, now Brownsville, Pa., Oct. 16th. There my father sold his wagon and horse and purchased the tools of a blacksmith who had recently died, and worked at his trade through the winter. I and my older brother went to school to a Quaker named Rezin Cadwallader. On the 16th of April, 1796, with three other families, we started to float down the river with the current on a flat boat, and on the 2d of May reached Marietta on the Ohio River at the mouth of the Muskingum.

The next day General Putnam assembled forty Indian Chiefs in the blockhouse of Fort Harmar, on the opposite side of the Muskingum, with the noted Simon Girty acting as interpreter, where they signed the treaty of peace made with them by General Wayne.

The same spring father and four others went to Athens county and cut and burned the brush from four acres of bottom land on the Hockshocking, and with hoes planted corn and pumpkins wherever they could find a place for a hill. The vines covered the logs, and such a swamp of corn and pumpkins I never saw. They assisted each other in putting up log cabins with puncheon floors and split clapboard roofs, and the 3d week my mother moved into one of them with her children. Here we stayed two years, living on pounded corn. The men gathered it and carried it in baskets on their shoulders. They then pounded it, and the coarse they used for hominy and the fine for bread. We had bear meat and wild turkey in abundance. We brought six barrels of flour with us, but it was all gone by winter; many emigrants visiting the country, and mother never letting one leave hungry.

In the fall of 1798 we removed to the Scioto salt works, 30 miles from Chillicothe, and remained until 1803, when father died of malignant dysentery contracted while cutting a road to land he had purchased 20 miles north of Gallipolis. We older boys moved on this land, cleared and planted a few acres, and mother and the rest of the family came in May 1804.

There was a heavy snowstorm on the 7th of May of that year, which blackened the trees. It lay six inches deep on the ground the next morning, but soon melted under the rays of the sun."

At this point his own narrative ceases.

Having thus been trained to the occupation of farming, he continued in it after the death of his father.

On the 17th of March, 1808, before he had attained his majority, he married Susannah Parker, by whom he had three children, of whom two survive. His first wife died July 15th, 1815. It was after her death and when he was 28 years of age that he began to think of qualifying himself for the medical profession. He had enjoyed scarcely any advantages of schooling. He was self-taught in almost everything he had learned. Having a natural fondness for mathematics he often worked out in his head hard sums that puzzled those older than himself to solve with slate and pencil.

During the time he was engaged in studying for his profession he went into Kentucky, and going from place to place, taught evening schools (grammar and singing) to procure the necessary means.

In 1818 he engaged in the practice of medicine at Madison, Ohio, in company with Dr. Duncan, of that place.

On the 1st of May, 1820, he was married to Elizabeth Heywood, by whom he had seven children, only three of whom survive. After a union which lasted 48 years, she died in 1868. The same year (1820) he removed to Union county, Ind. In 1822 he was sent to the state legislature which tehn assembled in Corydon, that being the capital of the state.

In 1834 he came to Laporte county. In 1839 he was sent to the lower house of the legislature, and in the following year was sent to the state senate from the north-west district which he represented for three years. He had a prominent part in forming the laws at that early period, and drafted the first law providing for a system of common schools in Indiana.

Having come to Laporte at that early period, he soon attained a very extensive practice in his profession, and during the sickly season of the year when nearly every household was afflicted with fever and ague, he was under the necessity of riding night and day, oftentimes sleeping in his buggy as he rode from house to house.

In 1839 he built the mill at what is now called Union Mills, in Laporte county, and carried on the milling business for a period of ten years. This proved an unfortunate investment, resulting in the loss of about $20,000, and leaving him in considerable financial embarrassment.

From 1849 to 1856 he resided at Michigan City, when he removed to Minnesota.

In 1857 he removed from Minnesota to Valparaiso where he continued to practice medicine until the death of his wife, having diligently persevered in that calling for fifty years, and sustaining a high reputation in it for ability.

In matters of religion, though not holding exactly what are known as evangelical views, nor connecting himself with any evangelical church, he was a man of decided convictions, a man of faith and prayer, cherishing in his heart a warm love for the Lord Jesus Christ as his Savior and cheered by a bright hope of eternal life through him This hope remained with him while consciousness lasted. No man was ever more resigned to the will of his heavenly Father than he was during his last sickness, bearing with patience the severity of his suffering and continually expressing a willingness to go or stay as it might please Him. He closed his long, useful and beautiful life, leaving none but pleasant memories behind him.

The remains were buried in the old cemetery, Wednesday P. M., Sept. 18th, to await the resurrection of the just, the funeral services being conducted by Rev. R. Beer.

Newspaper: Porter County Vidette
Date of Publication: September 26, 1878
Volume Number: 22
Issue Number: 39
Page: 3
Column(s): 9

Key to Newspaper Publication Locations:
    Newspapers Published in Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana
                Chesterton Tribune
                The Tribune
                Westchester Tribune

    Newspapers Published in Valparaiso, Porter County, Indiana
                Porter County Vidette
                Practical Observer
                Valparaiso Practical Observer
                Vidette and Republic
                Western Ranger

The obituaries and death notices appearing on this website have been transcribed exactly as they were originally published in the newspaper. Please note that we do not provide photocopies or digital scans of obituaries and death notices appearing on this website.

Obituary/death notice transcribed by Steven R. Shook


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