Orton Family
Family of Sherman Orton who died Feb 8, 1882 in Bedford. [letter from Sharon Orton Kearney, 9041 Reading, Westminster, California
[letter from Mrs McCormick to Sharon Orton Kearney]

In answer to your questions - Vet [?] Orton's father was Sherman Orton was born in New York State Oneida County, I think. Born July 30, 1811. Died Feb 8, 1882. He married Dolly Gifford (sometime in 1831 or 1832). They had eight children - the majority born in New York State before they started coming west. However they were living in Fountain County, Indiana when my father (Sylvester Sherman) was born. They left there and went to Illinois where the youngest son Mathew was born. As there was only about two and a half years in their ages, you know my father was very small, and he knew nothing about his birth place except the county. Just when my grandfather (Sherman) came to Bedford I don't know but I imagine court records might show when he bought the farm. Both my father and his brother were still single but they must have been young men as all the rest of the family married and settled in different places in Illinois.

Mathew married before my father did, so he staid on the home place and farmed it. It was not a large enough farm to need two men, so my father went out to work. He learned to lay bricks and he was a brick mason most of his life, altho he did farm at times. He was on a farm near Bedford for about a year when I was three years old. Again on a farm in Oklahoma for four years and for a very brief time on a farm in Kansas. As to where he lived in Bedford, it was in several different homes, but I have no memory of but one. The last one he built and owned before we left Iowa. I was five when he built it and I was seven and a half when we left. It was on the same street the school house was on (the old stone one ) - about two blocks south of it. We moved often - but my father bought and sold - we didn't rent. He built two houses in Bedford, one in Oklahoma, and two here in California. In his later years he would buy a run down place, move in, fix it up and sell it at a profit. These were in the years when he and I were alone, after my sister was married. I could help him with that type of work, and enjoyed it. I also liked the moving on to new places. I developed "itching feet" as the saying goes. But I married a man who stays put and I have been on this place for forty years. But you didn't ask for my life history. To go back to your questions.

Sherman Orton's wife was Dolly Gifford. She was born Feb 11, 1811 died March 4, 1884. I think she was born somehwere in Pennsylvania, but they met and married in New York State. Some where around 1831. Dolly's mother was Nancy Donny [Dorney? hard to read] - Holland Dutch. Her father Joseph Gifford of French descent. I know nothing more about them. My grandparents church was Methodist, altho I couldn't say whether both were members. My father wasn't.

The "Greenlee girls were all born in Pennsylvania. Crawford County. Their church was Baptist. That was the church I always went to.

My husband's people being German belonged to the Lutheran church.