Among the early farmers who still remain on their original homestead is G.W. Macy, the venerable landmark and founder of the little hamlet of Macyville, who traces his lineage back to the Mayflower. Mr. Macy is a native of North Carolina, born in 1819. He is a son of Asa and Hannah (Stanley) Macy, both of whom were born on the Island of Nantucket. The Macys were of Quaker origin and left England their native land, where they were oppressed, and sought liberty in America; settling on Nantucket Island. In 1780, they joined a larger body of Friends who came over from England and settled in North Carolina, among whom were the Stanleys, his maternal ancestors, who were also adherents to the Quaker faith.
This family of Stanleys were a branch of State Superintendent Stanley's and Governor Stanley's ancestors. Mr. Macy's maternal grandmother was a Worth. The Macy ancestors for two generations he buried in the ancient Deep River cemetery of North Carolina.
Mr. Macy retained the Quaker principles instilled into him from infancy and did not enter the service of the United States at the breaking out of hostilities in 1861. During this year he was enroute to Kansas, but owing to the turbulent times stopped in Indiana. In 1863, he again started for the "Sunflower" state, but the war was waging fiercely and they were making things "hot" up and down the Mississippi. When the Macys arrived in Keokuk they met recruiting officers who declared a willingness to make it safe for them to travel through the country, and they journeyed overland to Syracuse, Nebraska, where Mr. Macy procured a homestead and farmed until 1871.
In the meantime he had not given up his longings and intentions of emigrating to the fair land of Kansas to secure homesteads for his children, and accordingly disposed of his Nebraska land and on April 24, 1871, ate dinner on the ground he afterwards homesteaded. Mr Macy had two brothers-in-law who had visited this country in 1858, and their glowing description of Kansas inspired him with zeal to come. He took a pre-emption claim which he held for his son, A.N., until he became of age. His other son, A.F., had attained his majority and secured an adjoining claim; and a son-in-law, the late John Beesley, located land in the same locality.
Mr. Macy was married in 1842 to Lydia Gordon, a native of North Carolina, and a daughter of John Gordon whose ancestors were from the Highlands of Scotland. The Gordons were also noncombatants in Revolutionary days and during the Rebellion, for they were also of the denomination of Friends. Her paternal grandfather was beaten on the head by the Tories and had three ribs broken, while they were trying to compel him to enter the ranks of the Revolutionary service, but he was a Quaker, remaining firm in his faith and refused to go. John Gordon died in 1846. His wife died in 1844. They lived in North Carolina all through the war and received harsh treatment from both sides. Mrs. Macy's parents are both buried in Deep River cemetery.
To Mr. and Mrs. Macy five children have been born, three of whom are living: Asa Franklin, Alfred Newton and Mary Jane, widow of John Beesley. Mr. Macy cast his first vote for William Henry Harrison, a Whig; he has since voted the Republican ticket. He has served as justice of the peace. He is member of the Society of Friends at North Branch, just beyond the Jewell county line.
Mrs. Macy who had been his constant companion through life died in 1881, and Mr. Macy lives with his children.
Asa F. Macy, the eldest son of G.W. Macy, is a carpenter, farmer, and stockman, living on his original homestead adjoining his father's. He was married in 1874, the memorable grasshopper year, to Clara L. Gilliland. Her father was James Gilliland, who came to Kansas in 1872, from Missouri, and settled in Republic county near Wayne, where he died in 1874. Her mother died in 1900. She had lived with Mrs. Macy more than twenty years.
Mr. and Mrs. A.F. Macy are the parents of five children, Bert E., who farms with his father; Mary Edna, wife of U.C. Moore, a farmer one mile east of Macyville; Avis, wife of George Dildine, a farmer one mile north of Macyville; and two little sons, Emery and Eeverett. A.F. Macy is a Republican in politics and was the nominee of his party for commissioner against Peter Hansen in 1892. He has been clerk of the school board in district number fifty-one for twenty years and township clerk for three years. He and his family are members of the Methodist Episcopal church.
Alfred N. Macy, the youngest son, owns one hundred and sixty acres of land on the original town site of Macyville. He was married in 1884, to Laura Rushton, one of the estimable daughters of Enos Rushton (see sketch). To this union five children have been born, four of whom are living: Roy E. (deceased), Irena J., Jessie O., George H. and Oliver H., aged fourteen, thirteen, eleven and eight years respectively.
The Macys, both A.F. and A.N., are progressive, industrious and representative farmers of the Macyville community.
Transcribed from E.F. Hollibaugh's Biographical history of Cloud County, Kansas biographies of representative citizens. Illustrated with portraits of prominent people, cuts of homes, stock, etc. [n.p., 1903] 919p. illus., ports. 28 cm.
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