FISHER Family History, Part I
The surname "Fisher" is derived from the Old English "fiscere" - "to fish." It since became the Middle English "FISCHER" and also has Low German variants of "FISSER," "VISSER," and "WISSER."
Our branch of the Fisher family begins with David Fisher, Sr. (born c. 1795, PA) and his wife, Sophia Weeks (or Meeks) (born 1796, PA). They started a family in Clinton County, Ohio, by 1819 and later passed through Vernon Township, Hancock County, Indiana (1833); Madison County, Illinois (c. 1843); and settled in Washington Township (Ashland, between present day Eldon and Agency), Wapello County, Iowa in 1850. From here the family branches out to Nebraska and Kansas: King David and his family moved to Hebron, Thayer County, Nebraska and later Sherman County, Nebraska; Sylvester and his family moved to Marshal County, Kansas and Whiterock, Republic County, Kansas (1866).
Following King David's death in 1871, his son John Jackson moved to Sherman County in central Nebraska, but in the late 1880's or more likely early 1890's headed west to California and resettled in Sonoma County, the center for some 600 descendants.
1. David Fisher1 was born in 1794 or 1795 in Pennsylvania. He married Sarah Weeks (or possibly Meeks), a native of Pennsylvania, and began their family of at least nine children there. After Sarah passed away (after 1856), David remarried to the widow Nancy (Bowles) Rickey on December 6, 1863, and fathered three more children:
|1A.||Samuel Martin Fisher||(Jun) 1815||Nov 1892||(77)|
|1B.||Catharine Fisher||(Sep) 1817||Aft Jul 1871||(>53)|
|1C.||King David Fisher2||19 Feb 1819||12 Jul 1871||(52)|
|1D.||Elizabeth Fisher||(Apr) 1821||Bef 1868||(<47)|
|1E.||Mary Ann Fisher||(Apr) 1824||16 Nov 1864||(40)|
|1F.||Sarah Ellen Fisher||19 Jan 1828||18 Feb 1876||(48)|
|1G.||John J. Fisher||20 Jan 1832||--||--|
|1H.||Sylvester T. Fisher, Sr.||4 Dec 1833||26 Sep 1897||(63)|
|1I.||Eliza Jane Fisher||16 Apr 1837||18 Jun 1903||(66)|
|1J.||Melissa Fisher||(Sep) 1864||(1882)||(18)|
|1K.||Isaac Fisher||19 Jan 1866||18 Oct 1948||(72)|
|1L.||Wilbur Fisher||14 Aug 1867||20 Jul 1927||(59)|
David and Sarah were married about 1814 in Pennsylvania and started their family there with two children. By 1819, the family moved west to Clark Township, in the general vicinty of Martinsville, Clinton County, Ohio, where the next five children were born.
In 1833 the Fisher family continued westward into Indiana and on November 20, 1833, purchased 60 acres in the N½ of NE¼ of Section 10, Range 6 East of Vernon Township, Hancock County, Indiana, which is estimated to lie to the northeast of Fortville along modern-day East Broadway (Route 67). His family may have remained behind temporarily as David's fourth son Sylvester was born back in Clinton County, Ohio, that December.
Come the new year, David purchased another 80 acres on April 11, 1834, in the E½ of SE¼ of the same section, which is estimated to lie to the south of modern-day 1050N and north of W1000N. This second estate he sold on March 1, 1837, for $200.
In 1836, David's second son, King David Fisher, bought the 40 acres of the SW¼ of NE¼ of the same Section 10.
Son Samuel Martin and daughter Catherine both started their families in Vernon and gave David and Sarah their first grandchildren there. Catherine possibly stayed behind in Indiana when the Fisher family moved to Illinois before 1843.
On April 2, 1850, David sold both his Indiana estate and his son's estate on for $1,100 and moved west to Ashland, Washington Township, Wapello County, Iowa.
On May 10, 1850, David Fisher paid $900 to Joseph Finarty of Wapello County for the NW¼ of SW¼ and 60 acres of the west side of west half of the NW¼ of Section 14, also the NE¼ of SE¼ of Section 22, all in Township 71 (Washington Township) N of range 12 West containing 140 acres. The 100 acres on the west side of Section 14 was to be the family home for the rest of David's and Sarah's lives. This farm was very near the town of Ashland which does not exist anymore. It was between Eldon and Agency, Iowa. The home was a 3-room house made of soft white pine, sided vertically with 12" boards. Batting was placed over the siding edges. There was a lean-to on one side of the house. This house is still used as a shop on the farmstead across the road from where it was built.
By the census of August 1850, David's family and his son Samuel Martin's family were both resettled in District #13 in Wapello County, Iowa.
Sarah (Weeks) Fisher passed away about 1857 in Wapello County, Iowa, and was buried at the Ashland Cemetery in Wapello County.
David remarried to Mrs. Nancy (Bowles) Rickey, the widow of the murdered Dr. Foster Rickey. Nancy and her two youngest sons, John and Curtis Howard Rickey, were enumerated with David in 1860[Cen 1860] however they were said to be married on December 6, 1863. They had three more children.
David Fisher passed away on July 27, 1868, at the age of about 73. David is also buried at the Ashland Cemetery in Wapello County.
At David's death there was a court division of David's land and it was sold at public auction. The following is a list of heirs of his estate:
|Mary Ann Parsons||daughter||44||8||dead|
|Sarah Ellen Davis||daughter||41||7||Indiana|
|Eliza Jane Parkhurst||daughter||32||8||Iowa|
After David's death, Nancy and her children stayed on with Martin Fisher, a close family relative, and his family in Wapello County. She continued on in Washington Township through at least the 1880 census.[Cen 1870,1880]
- Cen 1820: 1820 Census, Clark Township, Clinton County, Ohio
- Cen 1830: 1830 Census, Clark Township, Clinton County, Ohio
- Cen 1840: 1840 Census, Vernon, Hancock County, Indiana
- Cen 1850: 20 Aug 1850 Census, District 13, Wapello County, Iowa
- Cen 1856: 1856 Iowa Census, Washington Township, Wapello County, Iowa
- Cen 1860: 3 Jul 1860 Census, Ashland Post Office, Washington Township, Wapello County, Iowa
- Cen 1870: 10 Aug 1870 Census, Ottumwa, Washington Township, Wapello County, Iowa
- Cen 1880: 3 Jun 1880 Census, Washington Township, Wapello County, Iowa
Wading through census data we find three likely relations of David Fisher's that follow the same migration path. The first two are about 13 and 11 years older than David, and Martin is about 20 years younger, but not one of David's son:
- John Fisher, born about 1782 in New Jersey; married Ruth Conger
- George Fisher, born about January 1784 in New Jersey; married Mary (Cloke?)
- Martin Fisher, born about 1815 in Pennsylvania; married Elizabeth
- New Jersey (Woodbridge, Middlesex County) in the 1780's; New Jersey noted as the birth state of the elder John and George Fishers
- Pennsylvania (Washington County) in the 1790s through about 1815; Pennsylvania noted as the birth state of David Fisher and the younger Martin
- Washington County: George and Martin Fisher noted in East Bethlehem Township, 1810
- Greene County: Elias Conger in Morris Township, which borders Washington County, 1810
- Ohio by around 1819:
- Hancock County, Indiana by 1833
- Illinois in the early 1840's
- Wapello and Jefferson counties in Iowa by 1850; the families span three adjacent areas:
- Ashland, Washington Township, Wapello County: David Fisher and Martin Fisher (likely the son of George Fisher)
- Batavia, Des Moines Township, Jefferson County: David's son King David Fisher and George Fisher, along with an apparent Cloke grandson
- Libertyville, Des Moines Township, Jefferson County: John Fisher, his wife Ruth (Conger), sons George and Elias, and some likely Cloke relations
X. John Fisher was a likely relative of David Fisher, and about 13 years David's senior. He was born about 1782 in New Jersey and married Ruth Conger of the Conger family from Woodbridge, Middlesex County, New Jersey. They may have had as many as five children (three listed below and likely two additional daughters):
|X1.||George Fisher||17 Dec 1811||25 Jan 1876||(74)|
|X2.||Elias Fisher||1812/1813||3 Jun 1878||(65)|
The 1820 census appears to locate the John Fisher family in Salem Township, Monroe County, Ohio along with his father-in-law, Elias Darby Conger in nearby Adams Township, Monroe County, Ohio.
In addition to the three sons above, two apparent granddaughters, likely from deceased daughters, were enumerated with the John Fisher family in 1850:
• Mary Ann Murphin/Meskin
• Sarah J. Scott.
John Fisher died on April 10, 1852, in Jefferson County, Iowa. He was about 70 years old.
Ruth (Conger) Fisher died five years later on February 19, 1857, in Jefferson County.
X. George Fisher, a likely relative of David Fisher, and about 11 years David's senior, is found two families over from David's son King David Fisher in the 1850 census of Des Moines Township, Jefferson County, Iowa and likely settled the area as early as the 1840 census. George was born about January 1784 in New Jersey and married a Virginia woman named Mary (Cloke?). George and Mary had eight children:
|X3.||Martin Fisher||(1815)||7 Jan 1892||(76)|
|X5.||Sarah C. Fisher||(1819)||--||--|
|X8.||Hamilton Fisher||(1832)||26 Mar 1904||(71)|
The George Fisher family migrated to Ohio by around 1820, into Indiana by around 1832, and settled in Jefferson County, Iowa by the 1840 census, later noted as Libertyville, Des Moines Township, Jefferson County, Iowa in the 1850 census.
George Fisher died on August 2, 1859, and is buried at the Winsell Cemetery in Des Moines Township. He was around 75 years old.
After George's death, Mary lived with her son Hamilton and his family in Libertyville.
Mary (Cloke?) Fisher died 29 years later on December 20, 1888, and is also buried at the Winsell Cemetery. She was around 97 years old.
"I, George Fisher Seignior of the County of Jefferson, State of Iowa, being of sound mind, memory and understanding do make, publish and declare this to be my last will and testament. My will is first that my funeral charges and just debts shall be paid by my executor hereinafter named. The residue of my estate and property which shall remain after the payment of my just debts and funeral charges and the expense attending..."
"...and bequeth to my beloved wife, Mary Fisher, my home, lands, farm and all my household furniture to have and to keep for her own special use during her natural life time. I also further provide that at her decease the above named property of which she may be possessed as follows to wit: To my son, David Fisher, I bequeath five dollars to be paid to him by my executor within one year after the decease of my beloved wife. To my two sons, John Fisher and Jacob Fisher, I bequeath five dollars each to be paid them by my executor within one year after the decease of my beloved wife. To my son, Martin Fisher, I bequeath fifty dollars to be paid him by my executor within one year after the decease of my beloved wife. To my daughter, Mary Brown, I will and bequeath fifty dollars to be paid her by my son, Hamilton Fisher within one year after the decease of my beloved wife. To my daughter, Sarah Cloak [sic] I bequeath four hundred dollars, seventy five dollars of which to be paid by my son, Hamilton, and the balance to be paid by my son, Frederick Fisher within one year after the decease of my beloved wife. The residue of my property I bequeath to my two sons, Frederick Fisher and Hamilton Fisher, to be equally divided between them and their heirs and assigns. I do hereby appoint my brother, Daniel Fisher, of Wapello County, State of Iowa, to be the sole executor of this my last will and testament. In testimony whereof I have hereunto subscribed my name and affixed my seal this 25th day of June 1850."
s/s George Fisher (X) his mark.
X. Martin Fisher, an uncertain but close relation to David Fisher, was born about 1815 in Pennsylvania, as was David's son, Samuel Martin, thus causing some confusion. This Martin is likely the son of George Fisher who named a Martin in his will.
Martin married an Ohio woman named Elizabeth and began a family of eight in Indiana by 1839:
|X1.||Mary Jane Fisher||(1839)||--||--|
|X3.||James Fisher||Jun 1845||--||--|
|X6.||Louis A. Fisher||(1851)||--||--|
|X8.||Sarah Ann Fisher||(1854)||--||--|
The Martin Fisher family settled in Indiana by the time of the birth of their first daughter around 1839. By the 1840 census, Martin and George (likely his father) had settled in Jefferson County, Iowa Territory, where Martin and Elizabeth's first son was born around 1841. Later, the 1850 census records them in District 13, Wapello County, Iowa, near David Fisher and his family and continued to live on in Ashland, Washington Township, Wapello County near David through 1860.
After David's death in 1868, his widow Nancy and their three young children lived with Martin and his family as noted in the 1870 census of Washington Township.
By the 1880 census of Washington Township, David's widow was no longer living (presumed deceased?) with Martin and his family.
Martin and Elizabeth are buried at the Ashland Cemtery. Martin is recorded to have died on January 7, 1892, at the age of 76. His widow died eight years later in September 1900.
X1. George Fisher is a possible relative of the David Fisher family and probably related to Elias and John Fisher. He was born about December 17, 1811, in Washington County, Pennsylvania. He served in the Black Hawk War (1831-1832) and about 1835 married Mary Jane Cloke, allegedly in Indiana or perhaps Illinois. They had at least seven daughters and one son:
|X1.||Mary Ann "Polly" Fisher||1837/1838||--||--|
|X2.||Ruth Jane Fisher||(1840)||28 Jul 1921||(81)|
|X4.||Rachel Fisher||28 Dec 1843||7 May 1904||(60)|
|X5.||Rhoda Fisher||15 Mar 1846||30 Jul 1898||(52)|
|X6.||Martha E. Fisher||(1848)||29 Dec 1850||(2)|
|X7.||Clarissa C. Fisher||(1849)||Bef 1876||(<27)|
|X8.||Barbara A. Fisher||23 Oct 1852||24 Jul 1910||(57)|
Their first daughter was born in Illinois and soon thereafter (about 1836) the family moved to Des Moines Township, Jefferson County, Iowa, where the rest of their children were likely born.
George Fisher lived near John and Elias Fisher in Des Moines, Jefferson County, Iowa at the time of the 1850 census, which serves as the basis of the suspected interrelationships of these families.
Mary Jane (Cloke) Fisher is recorded to have died on January 23, 1852, (a date that conflicts with the birth of her youngest daughter). She is buried at Winsell Cemetery in Des Moines Township.
Several years after Mary's death, George moved a few miles northeast to Locust Grove Township, in the general area of Fairfield, Jefferson County, in 1865.
George Fisher died on January 25, 1876, in Jefferson County, Iowa. He was also buried at Winsell Cemetery.
"George Fisher, father of Mrs. MYERS, was a native of Pennsylvania, but in his youth removed to Indiana where he became acquainted with and married Miss Cloke, a native of that State. From Indiana they removed to Illinois in 1836 and two years later came to what is now Des Moines Township, Jefferson County, Iowa, but was then a part of the Territory of Michigan. He entered land and improved it, settling upon the purchase where he continued to make his home for many years."
"He was a stirring and wide-awake farmer who labored unceasingly for the interests of himself and family. He became a prominent citizen of the community, took and active part in politics and was a untiring worker in the Baptist Church. His upright life commended intself to the respect and confindence of all with whom he came in contact and won him many warm friends."
"He was called to his final home in 1876, having survived his wife for some twenty-six years. They were the parents of eight children; Mary Ann, now Mrs. BLACK of Kansas; Ruth J., the honored wife of Richard MYERS; Milton, who is married and makes his home in Locust Grove Township, enlisted for the late war in 1861, in Company H., Thirtieth Iowa Infantry and after serving three years was honorably discharged in Davenport; Rachel is now the wife of William SALTS; Rhoda married Samuel SALTS; Clara C. married Christian MAXSON and died in 1872; Martha E. died when two years of age. Barbara the youngest, is the wife of David SALTS."
X2. Elias Fisher was the son of John and Ruth (Conger) Fisher, who were likely kin of the David Fisher family. Elias was born in Pennsylvania about 1812 or 1813. He married Sarah White from Virginia and had at least seven children, all born in Iowa:
|X21.||Jesse Franklin Fisher||18 Mar 1838||29 Jan 1905||(66)|
|X22.||Allen R. Fisher||1841/1842||--||--|
|X23.||Ruth A. Fisher||Aug 1844||10 Jan 1847||(2)|
|X24.||William A. Fisher||11 Jul 1847||19 Dec 1923||(76)|
|X25.||Nancy J. Fisher||(7 Mar 1850)||26 Jan 1855||(4)|
|X26.||George W. Fisher||1855/1856||1926||(70)|
|X27.||Enos Fisher||1858/1859||1 Jul 1861||(2)|
Elias Fisher lived next door to John Fisher and nearby George Fisher in Des Moines, Jefferson County, Iowa at the time of the 1850 census.
Elias Fisher died on June 3, 1878, in Monroe County, Iowa. He was about 65 years old.
Sarah (White) Fisher died 7 years later on May 13, 1886, in Monroe County, Iowa. She was 69 years old.
1A. Samuel Martin Fisher was born in Pennsylvania in 1815. He married Rhuphema in Hancock County, Indiana about 1835 and had six children. A few months after Rhuphema's death, Samuel remarried to his brother's widow, Sophia Pritchard. Sophia died a year and a half later and then Samuel remarried to Nancy P. Carter a few months after that.
|1A1.||George W. Fisher||16 Feb 1837||4 May 1902||(65)|
|1A2.||Sarah Fisher||1838||May 1860||(22)|
|1A3.||James T. Fisher||24 Aug 1846||9 Nov 1871||(25)|
|1A4.||Nancy Ellen Fisher||24 Aug 1846||Aft 1880||(34)|
|1A5.||John H. Fisher||1847||Sep 1859||(12)|
|1A6.||William H. Fisher||1852||Aft 1910||(>58)|
Samuel Martin married Rhuphema, a native of Clinton County, Ohio, around 1835 in Hancock County, Indiana, where they bought property in Vernon Township. Their first child was born there in 1837 and the following year were relocated to Rock Island County, Illinois, where the next four children were born. Between 1847 and 1852, the family moved to Iowa, probably Louisa County, and had their sixth child. By 1858 the family moved to Nehama County, Kansas, and in 1866 to White Rock Creek, Republic County, Kansas. Samuel was the first to settle the White Rock Creek area along with his wife, five children, and one grandchild.
In October 1866, Samuel, some visiting friends of his from Nemaha County, and other White Rock Creek settlers, went on a hunting trip through Holmwood and then southwest from Whitestone. There they were ambushed by a band of eight Indians. Outnumbered, Samuel offered no resistance and allowed the Indians to make off with surplus provisions, revolvers, and revolver ammunition. The Indians left them with a little food and their rifles and warned them not to hunt in that area as it was Indian hunting ground.
Glad to escape so easily, the hunting party returned to the previous night's camp but during the next morning, a lone Indian rode up and took a fancy to John Marling's powder horn. The Indian decided it would make a nice gift and decided to take the powder horn much to Marling's chagrin. John Marling three months earlier had his wife dragged away with a rope around her neck and assaulted by Indians and was therefore unwilling to give any Indian anything. Samuel Fisher feared creating unnecessary trouble and so advised John Marling to surrender the powder horn. John did so. The Indian took the powder horn, wheeled his pony around to leave but suddenly turned and shot Samuel in the back. Before Marling could fire back, Samuel pleaded not to return fire.
Samuel carried the bullet, and even a measure of respect for the Indians to his grave. He treasured a complete Indian suit and huge feather headdress which was given to him by other Indians.
In 1871, Samuel and Rhuphema's son, James T., died at the age of 25. That same year, Samuel's younger brother, King David died across the state line in Nebraska.
Rhuphema died on August 31, 1885, and was buried at the Persinger Cemetery in Republic County.
Four months later, Samuel remarried his brother King David's widow, Sophia, on December 22, 1885, in Loup City, Sherman County, Nebraska. They lived in Republic County but this marriage only lasted a year and a half before Sophia died.
Sophia (Pritchard) Fisher died on May 17, 1887, while in her 60s. She was buried in Republic County.
Once again, Samuel was remarried by year's end, this time to Nancy P. Carter on September 13, 1887.
Samuel Martin Fisher died in November 1892 at the age of 77 years in Benton County, Arkansas. He is reportedly buried at Stone Chapel Cemetery in the Flat Woods area southeast of Southwest City, McDonald County, Missouri.
1B. Catharine Fisher was born in 1817 in Pennsylvania. She married Elvy Garrison on March 28, 1833, in either Clinton County, Ohio, or Vernon Township, Hancock County, Indiana. They had at least 10 children:
|1BA.||Sarah J. Garrison||(1835)||--||--|
|1BB.||Mary Ann Garrison||(1837)||3 Jun 1898||(61)|
|1BC.||Silas Garrison||5 Jul 1840/1841||27 Dec 1893||(53)|
|1BD.||Rebecca Ellen Garrison||30 Mar 1843||22 Feb 1918||(74)|
|1BE.||Catharine S. Garrison||(1846-1849)||--||--|
|1BH.||David Garrison||(Aug 1859)||--||--|
|1BI.||Eliza Isabelle Garrison||(1862-1863)||--||--|
The Garrison family settled in Indiana by around 1835 where they were noted in both the 1840 and 1850 censuses in Vernon Township, Hancock County. By the 1860 census, they resettled in Batavia, Des Moines Township, Jefferson County, Iowa, where her brother King David, sister Mary Ann (Fisher) Parsons, and their families had settled in 1850 and 1851, respectively.[Cen 1860]
Catharine was present at the death of her brother, King David, in Nebraska on July 12, 1871.
Elvy Garrison died on August 29, 1888, at about the age of 76.
- Cen 1850: 9 Sep 1850 Census, Vernon Township, Hancock County, Indiana
- Cen 1860: 8 Jun 1860 Census, Batavia Post Office, Des Moines Township, Jefferson County, Iowa
- Cen 1870: 14 Jul 1870 Census, Fairfield Post Office, Des Moines Township, Jefferson County, Iowa
- Cen 1880: 19 Jun 1880 Census, Des Moines Township, Jefferson County, Iowa
1C. King David Fisher2 was born on February 19, 1819, in Clinton County, Ohio. He stood about 6' 6" tall. King married Sophia Pritchard, a native of Indiana in 1840 or 1841. They had at least nine children, probably 12, born in Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, and Nebraska:
|1CA.||John Jackson Fisher3||6 Jan 1843||8 May 1906||(63)|
|1CB.||Mary C. Fisher||29 Mar 1845||Bef. 1871||(<26)|
|1CC.||Isaac Fisher||10 May 1847||(Jun 1867)||(20)|
|1CD.||Sylvester Fisher||12 Nov 1849||11 Jan 1889||(39)|
|1CE.||Sarah M. Fisher||12 Nov 1849||--||--|
|1CF.||Ellen C. Fisher||2 Jun 1852||--||--|
|1CG.||David W. Fisher||(1854-1855)||Bef. 1871||(<17)|
|1CH.||Frederick P. Fisher||22 Jan 1857||Bef. 1871||--|
|1CI.||Theodore William Fisher||20 Jun 1859||22 Nov 1925||(66)|
|1CJ.||Samuel M. Fisher||5 Aug 1861||--||--|
|1CK.||Ira H. Fisher||1 Apr 1863||3 Nov 1938||(75)|
|1CL.||Robert A. Fisher||9 Dec 1865||--||--|
As a young man, King bought 40 acres in the SW¼ of the NE¼ of (Township 17 North), Range 6 East, Section 10, in Vernon Township, Hancock County, Indiana, in 1836. His father owned property to the north, northeast, and southeast in the same section.
King is said to have met his wife, Sophia Pritchard, near Louisville, Kentucky. They were wed in 1840 or 1841 and began their family in Illinois in 1843 with the birth of their first son, John Jackson. By 1846, the family moved to Indiana where the next four children were born.
King David allegedly left home to follow the Gold Rush to California but apparently returned to relocate to Batavia, Des Moines Township, Jefferson County, Iowa by the time of the 1850 census, along with his sisters Catharine (Fisher) Garrison, Mary Ann (Fisher) Parsons, and their families. Here they resided through the 1860 census until 1862 when the family moved again, this time to Big Sandy, Hobbs Precinct, Jefferson County in the Nebraska Territory--the heart of Pawnee territory--and homesteaded in the center of Section 9, Township 2 North, Range 2 West. Son John homesteaded in the northeast part of the same section. The family was run off the homestead in the summer of 1867 by Indians, ironically the same year that Nebraska gained statehood. It was probably in this attack that King David's second eldest son Isaac was killed. The Fisher family retreated east and resettled temporarily in Tarkio, Atchison County, Missouri for two years.
On June 1, 1869, King mustered in as a founding member and First Corporal (then at the age of 50) of the Nebraska Cavalry Militia, First Regiment, Company A, at Fort Butler to defend against Indian raids such as the one that drove his family out in 1867. He mustered along with three privates: Sylvester, age 19 (his son); James, age 24 (likely his nephew); and William, age 17 (likely his nephew and James' brother).
In 1870 a company of regular Army was stationed to the north at Kiowa which relieved Company A. At that time many soldiers took up claims in central and southern Thayer County, which likely prompted King's move from Big Sandy to Hebron. King homesteaded on Section 9 of Township 2 North, Range 2 West.
King David Fisher died of "lung fever" (or perhaps typhoid) in a dug-out on July 12, 1871, in Hebron, Thayer County, Nebraska. King David, by request, was buried on the homestead on a hill facing north overlooking the Little Blue River and the Oregon Trail. The hill had been a lookout for marauding Indians and lay between two springs (one known as Avalon Springs and later renamed Corliss Springs). King chose his final resting place so that he would never be thirsty. King Fisher's sister and son noted that he had joked with settlers of the area that they would have to shoot someone to start a graveyard -- and he was the first of the group to die in Hebron.
Some say the tombstone originally contained the description "1st Sergeant, Fort Butler" but if so no trace remains. Furthermore, a Hebron poet by the name of G. W. WASSON penned a 22 verse poem to commemorate King Fisher, part of which reads:
Another contemporary of King Fisher's was D. W. Hendershot, among the early settlers of Hebron, wrote to his grandchildren recalling:
Among King Fisher's estate was a rifle named "Black Leg." King had broken the stock when he slipped and fell on the frozen Little Blue River. and patched the stock with a piece of brass. The rifle was passed to King's second youngest son, Ira who bagged his first elk around the Loup and Dismal rivers using "Black Leg" and later put it on display at the North Platte courthouse.
King's widow, Sophia received her patent (#1371) for 160 acres on February 7, 1876, but later moved to Clear Creek, Sherman County, in central Nebraska by the 1880 census along with her three youngest sons and the families of her two eldest sons, John and Sylvester. Sophia remained in Clear Creek into 1885[Cen 1885] when her brother-in-law Samuel's wife died in August 1885 to the south in Republic County, Kansas. Sophia and Samuel married on December 22, 1885, in Loup City, Sherman County, and lived in Republic County. This marriage only lasted a year and a half before Sophia died.
Sophia (Pritchard) Fisher died on May 17, 1887, while in her 60s. She was buried in Republic County.
King Fisher Legacy
Kingfisher creek, township, and county, in Oklahoma, are said to be named for King David Fisher who camped along the creek in the days before the Chisholm Trail crossed through.
"Picture of King David Fisher marker at Hebron, Nebraska. Nadine Walter made trip to Hebron to take this picture."
"For a long time the impression existed that the town of Kingfisher, county, creek, and township were named for the Kingfisher bird that is native of this general area of the southwest."
"Another theory was that the town was named for a John King Fisher (1854-1884), who controlled 5000 sq. miles in Dimmit County, Texas (southwest of San Antonio on the Mexican border). His parents were Joby (Jobe) and Lucinda Warren Fisher. Joby's parents were James and Anna Ladd Fisher. James came to Texas from Illinois. This King Fisher was known as an outlaw but died while helping on the sided of the law."
"Some people were of the opinion that there were two men who owned ranches in the vicinity of what is now Kingfisher. One man's name was King and the other Fisher. They thought King had operated the stage station in the early days, so when the town was laid out it was named after these two men."
"John D. Miles was appointed agent of the Cheyenne and Arapaho Indians in 1872 by President Grant, with headquarters at Darlington near El Reno. Mr. Miles became familiar with this part of the territory and its traditions, so is one of the most reliable authorities for the explanation that the creek was so called in honor of King Fisher (King David Fisher), a ranchman in the early day whose range and camps were on this stream. At that time he was known as a livestock trader, gambler, and when necessary, Indian fighter. He traveled in Oklahoma buying and selling cattle and he also had a string of stallions."
"Mr. Miles is also the authority for the explanation that "Uncle John's" Creek, which unites with Kingfisher Creek at the northeast corner of the townsite, was so-called owing to the fact that another ranchman who was popularly known as "Uncle John" held his cattle upon the grazing grounds along the creek."
"Settlements in Oklahoma along the famous Chisholm Cattle Trail, which started in 1867, and extended from Texas to Abilene, Kansas, were trading posts and stage stations. This was where stage coaches that carried passengers from Caldwell, Kansas to Ft. Reno and Ft. Sill could stop to change horses, food, eat, and rest. The "King Fisher Stage Station" was located just west of the present Kingfisher Post Office on the north banks of Kingfisher Creek and the road from there followed up 13th Street."
"This cattle trail lasted for about twenty years. When the Department of Interior made its plans to open Oklahoma Territory to white settlement in the early part of 1889, it had to provide for the location of two land offices. One land office was located on an acre of ground in the southeast corner of NW/4 of Sec. 15-16N-7W, at or near the "King Fisher Stage Station" on the Chisholm Trail. After the opening, the settlers joined these two names together and the village and town which grew up around the land office has since been known by the name of "Kingfisher."
"King David Fisher"
"David and Sarah Fisher were the parents of King David Fisher. He was born February 19, 1819, in Clinton County, Ohio, and grew to be about 6' 6" tall. Both David and Sarah were born in Pennsylvania. David Fisher was born about 1794 and Sarah about 1795. They moved to Ohio with their family about 1818."
"Land records in Vernon Township, Handcock [sic] County, Indiana, showed David Fisher Sr. of Clinton County, Ohio, bought land in Ohio in November, 1833, and sold it April 2, 1850. King Fisher also owned land in Clinton County and sold it the same time his father did. David Fisher, Sr. then purchased land in Wapello County, Iowa, May 10, 1850 and lived there the remainder of his life. Sarah passed away first; David Fisher, Sr. passed away July 27, 1868."
"King David Fisher met Sophia Pritchard (who was born July 12, 1825) near Louisville, Kentucky. They were married in 1840 or 1841 and were the parents of 12 children."
"In 1849 King Fisher went to California to the Gold Rush. He had the reputation of going off and leaving Mrs. Fisher and the children to look after themselves the best they could. On one of these periods of being absent from home, he came to this part of Oklahoma where a town bears his name."
"On June 2, 1852, a daughter, Ellen C., was born in Wapello County, Iowa. The family probably remained there for ten years or more, as four more children were born there."
"King Fisher and Sophia homesteaded in the center of Sec. 9-2N-2 in Thayer County about two miles southeast of Hebron, Nebraska. This farm was crossed by the Little Blue River."
"Fort Butler was a stockade built about one mile southwest of Hebron for the protection of the settlers from Indian attacks. King Fisher served as 1st Sgt. at the fort. He always called his rifle 'blackleg'."
"Mrs. Garrison also told of 'hair raising' experiences in Indian raids."
"King Fisher's third child, Isaac, born May 10, 1847, was killed by the Indians. The Fisher family with their neighbors were driven out of Thayer County, in 1867, by the Indians, so they lived at Tarkio, Missouri, for two years before returning to their homestead."
"Mrs. Garrison was with King Fisher at the time of his death. He died of Lung Fever (others say it was typhoid) in a dugout and was buried, at his request, on the homestead. It was on a hill facing north, just below is the Little Blue River, and just across the river was the Oregon Trail. There is a tombstone that reads: King David Fisher, born Feb. 19, 1819, died July 12, 1871, 52 years, 4 mos., 23 days."
"This is the grave of King Fisher, on a hill near Hebron, Nebr. The child standing behind the tombstone is his great-grandson, King David Fisher II."
"King Fisher, For Whom City Is Named, is Buried On Hill Near Hebron, Nebr."
"King Fisher, frontiersman for whom Kingfisher creek, city and county (the only ones in the United States) were named, is buried near Hebron, Nebr. His children are all deceased, but a great-granddaughter, Mrs. Mabelle [sic] Fisher Clark, lives at North Platte, Nebr., and a granddaughter, Bertha A. Hartsock, 70, lives at Welch, Okla."
"Information concerning King Fisher has been supplied by these surviving relatives. He was born somewhere in the east in 1812 [sic], a member of a family of 13 or 14 children, and died in Nebraska in 1869 [sic]."
"He met his wife, Sophia Pritchard, near Louisville, Ky., and they became the parents of seven sons and two daughters. One son, Isaac, was killed by Indians."
"Fisher, a horse trader and sometimes gambler, was also an Indian fighter when necessity demanded, although he was a friend to all civilized Indians. Long before the opening of the country to settlement, he traveled in Oklahoma, buying and selling cattle, and also had a line of stallions."
"One of his camping places was on the banks of what came to be known as Kingfisher creek, and when a stage station later was built there it likewise received the name of Kingfisher."
"An unusual circumstance occurred in connection with King Fisher's death. He foretold his passing two weeks before he died, although a physician summoned by his wife could find nothing wrong with him at that time."
"At his own request he was buried on a hill on his ranch where frontiersmen had used a telescope to watch for marauding Indians. His old musket hangs in the courthouse at North Platte, Nebr."
"The old log ranch house still stands and is the only original building left on the ranch."
- Cen 1850: 6 Nov 1850 Census, Des Moines Township, Jefferson County, Iowa
- Cen 1856: 1856 Iowa State Census, Washington Township, Wapello County, Nebraska
- Cen 1860: 8 Jun 1860 Census, Batavia Post Office, Des Moines Township, Jefferson County, Iowa
- Cen 1870: 27 Jun 1870 Census, Big Sandy Post Office, Hobbs Precinct, Jefferson County, Nebraska
- Cen 1885: 16 Jun 1885 Nebraska State Census, Clear Creek Precinct, Sherman County, Nebraska
1D. Elizabeth Fisher was born in 1821 in Clinton County, Ohio. She married Michael N. Miller and died sometime before her father, who died in 1868.
1E. Mary Ann Fisher was born in 1824 in Clinton County, Ohio. She married Andrew Jackson Parsons on July 27, 1845, in Hancock County, Indiana. They had as many as six children:
|1E1.||Eliza A. Parsons||(1848-1849)||--||--|
|1E2.||Sarah E. Parsons||(1850-1851)||--||--|
|1E3.||David M. Parsons||(1853-1854)||--||--|
|1E4.||Martha A. Parsons||(Dec 1855)||--||--|
|1E6.||Noah Jackson Parsons||(1861-1862)||--||--|
The Parsons family moved west from Indiana to Iowa by around 1851, where Mary Ann's parents and brother King David had resettled the year before. They later made a brief venture into Kansas where Augusta was born around 1857, but returned to Iowa by 1860 and settled near Mary Ann's sister Catharine (Fisher) Garrison and brother King David near Batavia in Des Moines Township, Jefferson County.[Cen 1860] Her parents lived west of the county line in Wapello County.
Mary Ann (Fisher) Parsons died on November 16, 1864, in Wapello County, Iowa. She was about 40 years old. She is buried at the Ashland Cemetery in Wapello County.
- Cen 1850: 19 Aug 1850 Census, Jones Township, Hancock County, Indiana
- Cen 1860: 8 Jun 1860 Census, Batavia Post Office, Des Moines Township, Jefferson County, Iowa
1X. Fred Fisher was born about 1825 in Ohio. He married a woman named Mary in 1849 or 1850 and lived next to David K. Fisher. Based on this and his birth place, Fred is possibly an additional brother of King David Fisher.
1F. Sarah Ellen Fisher was born in 1827 in Clinton County, Ohio. She married William F. Davis in Hancock County, Indiana, on July 28, 1845, one day after her sister, Mary, married. Sarah and William had seven children. Twelve years after William's early death, Sarah remarried to George Perris Helvie in May 1870, and had one daughter:
|1F1.||Mary Lucinda Davis||17 Nov 1848||--||--|
|1F2.||Clyde Davis||Abt 1850||--||--|
|1F3.||Harriett Katherine Davis||13 Jan 1851||--||--|
|1F4.||Joseph Henry Davis||26 Mar 1853||--||--|
|1F5.||James Washington Davis||01 May 1855||11 Apr 1931||(75)|
|1F6.||Malissa June Davis||14 Sep 1857||14 Nov 1879||(22)|
|1F7.||Levada D. Helvie||22 Feb 1871||--||--|
William F. Davis died on October 27, 1857, at the young age of 33. He is buried at Ashland Cemetery in Wapello County, Iowa.
Twelve years later, Sarah Ellen remarried to George Perris Helvie on May 1870. She was 42 years old and the following year gave George a daugther.
Sarah Ellen (Fisher Davis) Helvie died on February 18, 1876, in Indiana. She was 48 years old.
1G. John J. Fisher was born in 1831 in Clinton County, Ohio. He married Lurena A. Martin and had six children. After Lurena died between 1864 and 1865, John remarried to the widow Mary Ann (Yearwood) Harkness and fathered two more children:
|1G1.||William Oliver Fisher||2 May 1851||--||--|
|1G2.||Mary E. Fisher||4 Nov 1853||--||--|
|1G3.||Sarah A. Fisher||22 Feb 1856||--||--|
|1G4.||George Thomas Fisher||30 Apr 1858||13 Jul 1940||(82)|
|1G5.||Margaret Ellen Fisher||4 Apr 1861||14 Feb 1891||(29)|
|1G6.||Lewis Frederick Fisher||6 Jan 1864||7 Oct 1947||(83)|
|1G7.||Ruby Ann "Becky" Fisher||24 Feb 1868||--||--|
|1G8.||Liere Dvora "Dora" Fisher||30 Dec 1871||26 Apr 1911||(39)|
By the 1860 census, probably as early as 1855, the Fisher family had settled in Dennison, Pawnee Territory, Nebraska. At the time he was enumerated next to his next younger brother Sylvester.
Lurena A. (Martin) Fisher died on December 3, 1865, at the young age of 31 years. Her three surviving children were only between the ages of 1 and 7 years old. Lurena is buried at the Pawnee City Cemetery in Pawnee County, Nebraska.
Only two months after Lurena's death, John remarried to the widow Mary Ann (Yearwood) Harkness on February 8, 1866. He legally took responsibility for her son George Washington Harkness. At some point the family moved to Morris Township, Sullivan County, Missouri, where they were enumerated during the 1870 census.
1H. Sylvester Theodore Fisher, Sr. was born on December 4, 1833, in Clinton County, Ohio. He married Sarah Marie Parkhurst, a native of Indiana, on December 14, 1853, in Wapello County, Iowa. The had as many as 16 children!
|1HA.||Albert Ross Fisher||18 Mar 1855||24 Oct 1927||(72)|
|1HB.||Matilda Caroline Fisher||25 Sep 1857||2 Dec 1915||(58)|
|1HC.||William Riley Fisher||4 Nov 1858||8 Aug 1953||(94)|
|1HD.||Nancy Emeline Fisher||18 Mar 1860||29 Dec 1945||(85)|
|1HE.||Mary Adeline Fisher||19 Sep 1861||18 Sep 1910||(48)|
|1HF.||Stephen Douglas Fisher||8 Feb 1863||15 Jul 1865||(2)|
|1HG.||John David Fisher||29 Mar 1864||17 May 1935||(71)|
|1HH.||Sarah Isabelle Fisher||21 Jun 1865||27 Nov 1948||(83)|
|1HI.||Francis Marion Fisher||1 Jan 1867||5 Mar 1937||(70)|
|1HJ.||Joseph Henry Fisher||30 Jun 1869||8 Feb 1908||(39)|
|1HK.||Ira "Crink" Manzo Fisher||24 May 1870||14 Dec 1941||(71)|
|1HL.||Sylvester T. Fisher, Jr.||23 Nov 1871||11 Sep 1936||(64)|
|1HM.||Edward Elonzo Fisher||16 Nov 1873||20 Jan 1929||(55)|
|1HN.||Keziah Catherine Fisher||15 Apr 1876||Nov 1939||(63)|
|1HO.||Ellen Celia Fisher||20 Dec 1877||14 Feb 1879||(1)|
|1HP.||Ida "Stell" Estella Fisher||21 Jun 1880||3 Nov 1951||(71)|
Sarah Marie Parkhurst was born May 31, 1835, and married Sylvester in Wapello County, Iowa, on December 14, 1853, as recorded in their family Bible. There they had their first two children but by 1858 the family moved to Marysville, Marshall County, Kansas where their third child was born. In 1859 the family moved north into what is now Pawnee County, Nebraska and were enumerated in the 1860 census at Dennison, Pawnee Territory, next to Sylvester's next older brother John who had moved there perhaps as early as 1855.[Hobson, Cen 1860]
In 1868 Sylvester moved one mile east of Liberty, Gage County, Nebraska, to Section 36, Township 2, Range 8 East. Here he owned a farm of 320 acres with 100 acres under cultivation and remained there the rest of his life.[Hobson]
Sylvester was over 6 feet tall, a common characteristic of the Fishers, and had a large beard. He was a very good shot and hunted alone, sometimes for days, to supply meat for the family. He was a friend to all including Indians who still roamed the area.
Sylvester Theodore Fisher died on September 26, 1897, at the age of 63.
Sarah Marie (Parkhurst) Fisher died four months later on January 4, 1898. Both are buried in the Liberty Cemetery where a large marker identifies their graves.
- Cen 1850: 20 Aug 1850 Census, District 13, Wapello County, Iowa
- Cen 1860: 2 Jul 1860 Census, Dennison, Pawnee Territory, Nebraska
- Cen 1870: 27 Aug 1870 Census, Liberty, Gage County, Nebraska
- Cen 1880: 16 Jun 1880 Census, Liberty, Gage County, Nebraska
- Cen 1885: 1885 Nebraska State Census, Liberty, Gage County, Nebraska
- Hobson, Calvin C. Sylvester and Sarah (Parkhurst) Fisher of Gage County, Nebraska. 1972.
1I. Eliza Jane Fisher was born April 16, 1837, in Hancock County, Indiana. She married Benjamin Franklin Parkhurst, the brother of her next elder brother Sylvester's wife, on August 25, 1855, and had nine children:
|1I1.||David S. Parkhurst||29 Aug 1856||--||--|
|1I2.||Nancy E. Parkhurst||2 May 1859||1898||(39)|
|1I3.||Ben C. F. Parkhurst||11 Oct 1861||--||--|
|1I4.||Lavada T. Parkhurst||20 Jan 1865||1 Jul 1866||(0)|
|1I5.||Ulysses S. G. Parkhurst||22 Mar 1868||--||--|
|1I6.||Arminda M. Parkhurst||12 Jun 1871||28 Sep 1875||(4)|
|1I7.||Emery T. Parkhurst||27 May 1874||--||--|
|1I8.||Minnie B. Parkhurst||6 May 1877||20 Oct 1878||(1)|
|1I9.||Inez Parkhurst||16 Oct 1880||10 Sep 1955||(74)|
Benjamin Franklin Parkhurst was born April 3, 1837, and served in the Civil War. He died June 6, 1897, at age 60.
Eliza Jane (Fisher) Parkhurst died six years later on June 18, 1903, at the age of 65.
1J. Melissa Fisher was born about 1864 in Wapello County, Iowa. She was the first born of her father's second marriage to Nancy (Bowles) Rickey. Melissa died about 1882 at around the young age of 17.
1K. Isaac Fisher was born on January 19, 1866, in Wapello County, Iowa. He married Alice Belle Littlefield and had at least one daughter:
|1K1.||Alice Mary Fisher||15 Aug 1892||17 Jun 1928||(35)|
1L. Wilbur Fisher was born August, 14, 1867, in Eldon, Wapello County, Iowa. He married Bertha Letticia Dunn on April 2, 1890, and had 5 children:
|1L1.||Arthur Fisher||1 Dec 1892||1 Mar 1893||(3 mos.)|
|1L2.||Alta E. Fisher||2 Apr 1894||18 Oct 1929||(35)|
|1L3.||Jesse Isaac Fisher||7 Feb 1897||8 Dec 1982||(85)|
|1L4.||Alfred Fisher||11 Oct 1898||11 Aug 1899||(10 mos.)|
|1L5.||Rachel Fisher||30 Nov 1907||Feb 1947||(39)|
Bertha Letticia Fisher was born August 23, 1872, in Birmingham, Van Buren County, Iowa. She was raised outside of Birmingham at a place called "Turkey Scratch."
Wilbur Fisher died July 20, 1927, in Ashland, Wapello County, Iowa. He was 59 years old.
Bertha Letticia (Dunn) Fisher died on what would have been her 59th wedding anniversary on April 2, 1949. She was sleeping in her yard at the time.