Redmond Family

John W. Redmond Family | Wesley Redmond Family


John W. Redmond Family

John W. Redmond was born in Ontario, Canada, February 19, 1846, d. May 30, 1930.  His parents were Irish immigrants from Cork County, Ireland. He married Liza Gorman of Scotch and Irish descent.  The date of their marriage is unknown.  Liza died after bearing one child, Francis.  John W. and 12 year old Francis moved to Memphis, Michigan, where they became acquainted with the Spencer family.  The Spencers came to Memphis from Pennsylvania. They were Pennsylvania Dutch and English descent.

Johnny & Rosie Redmond
Johnny & Rosie Redmond

Orra and Sarah Spencer had five children.  Rosetta, Olive, Orra Jr., Ira and Albert.

John W. was attracted to the beauty of Rosetta Spencer b. Aug 30, 1858, d. Oct 16, 1933, the eldest of the Spencer children and they were married. There no children from this union.  Some years later Albert the youngest Spencer son and Frances Redmond were married. They had four children: Pearl, Raymond, John and Theodore. Francis passed away at the birth of Theodore May 16, 1904 at Curtisville, Michigan

John W. and Rosetta moved form Memphis, Michigan to Farwell, Michigan. Thye lived there a short time and then moved to Curtisville.  they purchased a peice of land from James Barnes. Barnes had errected a two story log house on the property in 1897 . This was the Redmond's home for the rest of their lives.


In the 1890's John W. carried the mail form McKinley to Curtisville. Then in 1900 from South Branch to Curtisville, later from Long Lake to Curtisville. He held the mail contract from the late 1800's till his death may 30, 1930 with the exception of a few years when Fred Bowser and Charlie Barry were the mail carriers.  He lived to be 84 years of age. John W. and Rosetta had a small country store with the Post Office combined. Edward Bell was the Post Master. John W. was Notary Public, Justice of the Peace and Clerk of Curtis Township. He wrote news for the Alcona County Review and the Bay City Times. He raised some nice Swiss acttle, was a lumber jack, river driver, a wonderful father and grandfather and wouldn't have backed down from Paul unyon.  John W. and Rosetta were members of the Curtisville Baptist Church. John served as Deacon, Church Clerk and Sunday School Superintendent.  Rosetta taught Sunday School and also served as Clerk.

Rosetta was a wonderful mother and grandmother.  She was always busy, and she passed away sitting in a chair with a dish towel in her hand. Rosetta was born August 30, 1858 and died October 16, 1933. 

Material provided by Francis Theodore Orra Alonza Spencer Redmond 

Wesley Redmond Family


Wesley Redmond, C. W. Montgomery, Orra Spencer
Will Spencer, Bessie Redmond Bell, Clara Montgomery, Earl Prophet Spencer (Adopted)

In 1916, Wesley Redmond owned 80 acres located NE 14, NE 1/4, Section 8 and NW 1/4, NW 1/4, Section 9, T25N - R5E, Curtis Township.

Wesley Redmond’s great grandfather, John Walker, was born in the county of Fermanaugh, Ireland. He was married to Jane Gorman. They came to America in the spring of 1831. Setting sail with their six children from Port Derry, Ireland and landing at Quebec; they traveled down the St. Lawrence River to Montreal and proceeded to the Province of Ontario. They settled on government land in Matilda Township, Dundee County.

Eliza Walker, fourth child in the John Walker family, married John Redmond. Eliza and John Redmond were Wesley Redmond’s grandparents. The January, 1868 minutes of the Loyal Orange Lodge in Varna, Ontario are signed by John Walker, secretary, and record John Redmond a member, who was present at this meeting. Some of John (brother of Eliza) and Jane Walker’s children remained in Canada- others came to Michigan. Their first son to come to Michigan was William, who settled in Marlette, Michigan in 1856.

Although the exact birthplace of Wesley Redmond is not know, it is assumed to be Marlette, Michigan. The tombstone at the Curtisville Cemetery indicates that he was born May 12, 1874 and died February 4, 1942.

As lumbering gave way in the area extending from Port Huron through Owosso. In the 1880’s, many adventurous men of independent spirit, moved North in Michigan to Alcona County. Among these were Orra Spencer Sr. grandfather to Bessie Spencer, and John Redmond, uncle of Wesley Redmond.

Wesley and Bessie Redmond
Bessie and Wesley Redmond

Orra Spencer Sr. and his wife Sara had five children who were Rosetta, Olive, Orra Jr., Albert and Ira. Mr. & Mrs. Orra Spencer Sr. Albert Spencer, Orra Spencer Jr. and Mrs. Hugh Curley were members of the Curtisville Baptist Church when it was organized in 1888. The lathe and plaster for the new church was donated by Hugh Curley, Hank Curley, and Orra Spencer Sr., Orra Spencer Jr. and Albert Spencer. The chimney was built by Hugh Curley. Orra Spencer Jr. and Albert Spencer cleared the land on their farms, which are now know as the Lewis L. and Norma L. Redmond Farm. This farm was not cleared until about 1913.

Bessie Spencer was born May 16, 1885 to Margaret Jane (Halley) Spencer and Orra Gilbert Spencer Jr. in Marlette, Michigan (Sanilac County). Her birth certificate indicates that her father was a plasterer. Bessie Spencer’s mother died at the time of her birth. At the death of Margaret Spencer, Olive Spencer Curley (Mrs. Hugh Curley) took her brothers daughter, Bessie, to raise her in  Curtisville. Olive died in 1892 and Bessie was then raised by Hugh Curley and his mother.
Bessie Spencer spent her early childhood on a farm about ¾ mile north of the lake on the present Lewis L. Redmond farm. Indian children were her playmates. The family has always fondly referred to this site as “the old places” and it abounded with many varieties of apple trees, huge oak and maple shade trees until the United States Government had all trees cut down on this section in 1975. Bessie’s stepmother Olive taught her how to play the piano and organ. Bessie played the organ at Curtisville Baptist Church when she was 9 years old. She usually walked to church (3 miles), and school (4 miles). The school was then located at the site of the present civic center (town hall). She joined the Curtisville Baptist Church in 1905. The family later moved to the location of the house which is now owned by James and Lillian Waters at the Southeast corner of Curtisville and Wissmiller Road.

The following information from tombstones in Curtisville gives information regarding persons previously mentioned in this history.

Orra Spencer Sr.
Died Sept. 8,1910
Aged 76 yrs. 6mo.12 days.

Died Feb. 9, 1908
Aged 77 yrs. 2 mo.

Olive E. Curley (daughter of Orra Sr.)
Wife of Hugh Curley
Died April 1892
Aged 45 yrs. 8 mo. 8 day.

Orra Spencer Jr. 1863 –1927
2nd Wife Clara Montgomery

Elizabeth Montgomery
Wife of W. Montgomery
Died Feb. 1, 1903
Age 61 yrs.

John W. Redmond
Born Ontario Canada
Feb. 19, 1846  Died Oct. 16, 1933

Wesley Redmond, who was independent in spirit, left Marlette, Michigan at the age of eighteen and joined the lumberjacks in the lumbering camps of Alcona County. He worked at Gates Mill, which later became known as the Lottis Ranch (located at the west end of Bamfield Road). He fell in love with Bessie Spencer and they were married in Hale, Michigan in 1902 by a traveling preacher. Witnesses at the wedding were Leonard Redmond and Ethel Profit, who was a sister of Earl Profit Spencer. They spent their honeymoon in Marlette, Michigan.

It is recorded that Wesley joined the Gleaner Life Insurance Company in Curtisville in 1903, which at that time was a social hall located on the John Redmond farm.

Ten children were born to Bessie and Wesley Redmond.
     Olive Margaret  (born in 1903 – Bay City, Mich. – died age 6 wks.)
     Russell  (born 1904 – died 1907)
     Alvin Orra  (born June 30, 1906) married Lorraine Isabel Barnes
     Clare Wesley  (born Nov. 1, 1907) married Ida Mae Wilkinson
     Earl  (died as an infant)
     Walter Samuel  (born July 17, 1910) married Winona Grace Roe
     Roy Edward  (born Sept. 24, 1914) married Peggy Rhuama Gauld
     Susan Marie  (born Jan. 13,1916) married Donald Lilley
     William John (born March 7, 1918) married Beth Christine Petre
     Lewis Lyle (born Sept. 20, 1921) married Norma Lillian Waters

At the same time Roy was born, Wesley and Bessie Redmond lived at Robinson’s Lumber Mill, which was located near Redhead Lake – Goodar, Michigan. When Wesley Redmond ended his career as a lumberjack in 1913 his family moved to the Orra Spencer Jr. farm. They lived in a log cabin near the big gulley, which was close to Grandpa Orra Spencer’s blacksmith ship.

Wesley later acquired 160 acres (3/4 mile from the Au Sable River near Hintz Road),, which he cleared and farmed. Sue, William, and Lewis were born on this farm. Later the family moved to the Hugh Curley farm on the Southeast corner of Wissmiller and Curtisville Road. Alvin, Clare and Walter farmed land in Curtisville, Goodar, and Whittemore. Bill farmed land in Curtisville after serving in Europe in army for four years during the 2nd World War. Roy, Sue, and Lewis were teachers and Lewis became a United Methodist Minister after serving in the Fifth Air Force for four years during the 2nd world war. Bessie Redmond died in 1967. If Wesley and Bessie Redmond were alive today in addition to their 28 grandchildren they would have 50 great-grandchildren and one greatgreatgrandchild.

The only two sons of Wesley and Bessie who presently own farms in Curtisville are Alvin, the eldest, and Lewis, the youngest. Alvin and Lorraine Redmond’s farm is located next to the old brick schoolhouse at the corner of Curtisville and Bamfield Road. Lewis and Norma Redmond’s farm is located on the Northeast corner of Curtisville and Wissmiller Road and extends across Curtisville Road to the North end of the farm. This farm was previously owned by Clare and Ida Redmond and originally was the Orra Spencer Jr. and Albert Spencer farm.
Bessie Redmond was faithful in attending and serving the Curtisville Baptist Church. She taught her children that the denomination was not important since there is only on Christian Church, which is the body of the Christian believer.    She advised her children to study to show thyself approved, a workman who needeth not to be ashamed… rightly dividing the word of truth.



As a devout Christian it was always her dream that one of her sons would become a minister. She was twice blessed because she lived to witness not only a son Lewis, but a grandson, Virgil, become ministers. Lewis was called by God to serve in the mission work of the inner city of Detroit where he has served Cass United Methodist Church and Center for the past 23 years. Virgil was called by God to serve in the Baptist mission work in Alaska where he has served the past 15 years establishing churches. Mark Redmond (son of William and Beth) is now preparing for the ministry. Robert Redmond served as Director of the Church Center at the Cass United Methodist Church Center at the Cass United Methodist Church from 1972-1976. He was shot to death on May 6, 1976 trying to be a peacemaker in the Cass Corridor while on duty at the Church Center.

Clare & Ida Redmond Family

Clare, Ida, Joan, Sonny and Betty Redmond

The 28 grandchildren of Bessie and Wesley Redmond are:

Parents                                          Grandchildren
Alvin & Lorraine                          Virgil, Zelma Rose, Gloria
Clare & Ida                                    Betty Ann, Joan, Clare Jr.
Walter & Nona                              Samuel, Edward, Russell, Linda,
                                                      William, James, Karen
Roy & Peggy                                 Paul Edward, Clifford Nelson
Susan & Donald                            Robert (deceased), Barbara,
                                                       Brenda, Margaret Ellen
William John & Beth Christine      John Lyle, Deana Marie, Mark Clare
Lewis Lyle & Norma Lillian         James Lyle, Paul Gilbert, Robert Rene’
                                                       (deceased)-killed May 6,1976, Diane
                                                       Lynn, Margaret Ann, Richard Ray

This family history was prepared by Norma Redmond in consultation with the sons and daughters of Wesley and Bessie Redmond.



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