1700 - 1915


of ancesters and immediate relatives


Elizabeth Yerxa Pratt

as told by herself






As I naturally have kept in close touch with some of my relatives, my account of them is a little more complete than of the others.



John Yerxa, my great grandfather, came to New York from Holland in 1700, and settled on the Hudson. He soon moved to Nova Scotia, and, after a short sojourn there, he again moved, this time to the Province of New Brunswick where he and his wife Catharine established themselves on a farm, near the mouth of the Keswick. They spent the remainder of their lives on this farm. Thirteen children were born to them, whose names were:

Daniel Yerxa
John Yerxa
Isaac Yerxa
Abraham Yerxa
James Yerxa
Mrs. Betsey Brewer
Mrs. Fanny Millet
Mrs. Rachel White
Mrs. Anne Agnew
Mrs. Sally Goff
Mrs. Polly Eastybrooks
Mrs. Katie Weeks
Mrs. Hannah McElroy

Fanny Yerxa Millet, the second daughter of this family, lived to a very old age and was a remarkable woman in many ways. She was called "Aunt Fanny" by all who knew her. She braided hats by the score, and carded wool, spun yarn, and knit mittens and stockings by the dozen pairs. I never knew of her being sick a day until the time of her death and so far as I know she never had an unsound tooth. She was kind and always ready to do a favor. Dear Aunt Fanny.

Abraham Yerxa, the fourth son of my great grandfather was my grandfather. He married Barbara Green. They had a farm near his father's and they were parents of fifteen children, ten boys and five girls. The boys and their wives were:

Daniel and Hilda Yerxa
Benjamin 1st Jemima, mother of 9 children
               2nd Isabell, mother of 3 children
Jonathan and Rebecca Yerxa
Michael and Temperance Yerxa
John and Eliza Yerxa
Allen and Jeams Ann Yerxa
Wellington and Angelina Yerxa
Samuel and Ruth Yerxa
Abraham and Betsey Yerxa
Moses and Margaret Yerxa

The five girls and husbands were:

Ruth Yerxa and Samuel Pickard
Katie Yerxa and Moses Pickard
Skelton Yerxa and John Jones
Patience Yerxa and Thomas Curry
Barbara Yerxa and Henry Stoat

These children all lived to grow up and when I came to Wisconsin the youngest was the father of a family of six. They settled so near together that they could all be summoned and gather within two hours.

My father, Michael Yerxa, the fourth of grandfather's sons, was born May 6th, 1810, (died 1881). He was married to Temperance White Dec. 24th, 1828. She was born July 28th, 1808, died 1896. They had twelve children, three boys and nine girls. The boys of Michael & Temperance and families were:

Elias, born Sept. 14, 1831, married to Maggie Yerxa, Feb. 16th, 1858. Two children, Frank and Ella, were born to them. Both Elias and wife are dead.

Wellington, born April 5th, 1842 (died Aug. 1915), married Addie Dumfrey Sept. 7th, 1867 and they had six children, John, Harry, Nellie, Minnie and Ada and a baby girl that died in infancy. After the death of his wife, Addie, he married Mrs. Harriet Ricker.

Michael, called Mac, was born March 25th, 1846 (died several years ago), and married to Louise Keyes June 27th, 1877. Their children are Dwight, Howard and Agnes, living, and Michael who died when seven years of age. Agnes is now Mrs. Donald Loper.

The girls of Michael & Temperance and families were:

Emma Ann, born Nov. 29th, 1829, married William Pickard Feb. 16th, 1848. Three children were born to them: Anna P. Atkins, Mary P. Junkin and Wilder A. Pickard. Emma died May 12th, 1903. Her husband had died twenty years earlier and her daughter, Mary, ten years earlier. Anna Atkins had two children, both girls, Lucia Blanche died in infancy, Myrtle Atkins Smith died in 1914, leaving a husband and three dear little girls: Marjory, Shirley and Katherine. Mary Junkin left one son, John Junkin, who is married and has a little daughter, Elizabeth. Wilder married Minnie Flood and they have three children, William, Austin and Dorothy.

Elizabeth, the second daughter of Michael and Temperance Yerxa, was born June 18th, 1833, and married to Ransom Pratt, March 30th, 1858. Three children were born to us: Barbara P. Reuso, Herbert E. Pratt and Ernest R. Pratt. Barbara has one daughter, Anna Beth, a graduate of the University of Wisconsin. Herbert, who married Lizzie Cook, has three boys, Gordon and Eugene, both students in schools of higher education, and a younger son, Will. Ernest married Rachel McIntosh and they have two children: Ranson and Katherine, both at home and attending school.

Barbara Yerxa, third daughter in my father's family was born Jan. 29th, 1835, and was not married but lived in the parental home until the time of her death.

Sophia Augusta was born Feb. 26th, 1837, (died in the fall of 1876), and was married Nov. 12th, 1857, to Charles Yerxa. They had six children: Bertha, Emma, Maude, Rankin, Mary and Maggie. These children all married.

Amelia, the fifth daughter of my parents was born Nov. 6th, 1838, (died in 1915), and married June 30th, 1863, to Ludlow Yerxa. Three of their children are living, Helen, Grace and Allie. Grove and Randolph died some years ago.

Fanny Amanda, the next sister, was born March 25th, 1844, was married to Moses Hagerman. Their children were: Atrude, Anne and Lee and one who died in infancy. At the death of Mr. Hagerman, his widow married Jesse Tabor. One child, Frank, was born of this union.

Three of my sisters died in infancy: Adaressa, Jemima and Amanda.

My father's brothers' families were as follows:

Daniel and his wife, Hulda, had two boys and six girls:

Kile Yerxa
Gabriel Yerxa
Ruth Yerxa
Martha Yerxa McKeen
Angelina Yerxa Lewis
Rhoda Yerxa Birt
Mary Yerxa Pickard
Katy Yerxa Davis

Benjamin and his wife Jemima had seven boys and two girls:

Abraham Yerxa
Jonathan Yerxa
Benjamin Yerxa
Joseph Yerxa
Daniel Yerxa
Chesley Yerxa
Abby Yerxa
Abigail Yerxa Pickard
Jemima Yerxa
Two children who died in infancy.

At the death of his first wife, Uncle Ben married Isabelle Jouett and two sons, who lived to manhood, resulted from this union. They were Henry and Edward. Henry is the only one of the family who is living. For more than forty years he has been an active and most successful business man in Boston, the founder of a great grocery firm and withal, an upright Christian gentleman.

Jonathan and his wife Rebecca's family were as follows:

Sarah Ann

Uncle John and wife Eliza had sons named John, Joseph and Mark, also a daughter named Demerias, and three other girls whose names I do not know.

Uncle Allen and Aunt Jeams Ann had five sons,


Uncle Wellington and Aunt Angelina had three boys, William, Barty, and Sherwood, and four girls, Matilda, Hulda, Atrude and Marion.

Uncle Samuel and Aunt Ruth had nine children, three of whom died in infancy. Those who lived to maturity were:


Uncle Abraham not only was my father's brother but Aunt Betsey (White) his wife, was my mother's sister. Hence their children, being double cousins, were very dear to the children of my father's family and I know more about their families than of the children of other cousins.

Uncle Abraham and Aunt Betsey had thirteen children, one of whom died in infancy. The living are:

Uncle Moses and Aunt Margaret had ten children:

Melbourne (1) died in infancy
Melbourne (2) grew up
Lucy Ann

Of my father's sisters:

Aunt Ruth (Yerxa) Pickard had five children: John, Samuel, Barbara Ellen, Lidea and Ruth Ann

Aunt Katie (Yerxa) Pickard had five children: Charles, Abraham, Ruth, Mary and Martha

Aunt Patience (Yerxa) Curry had five children: Barbara Ann, Abraham, John and two girls, names forgotten

Aunt Barbara (Yerxa) Sloat had a family of children, but am unable to get their names.

Aunt Skelton (Yerxa) Jones had no children live to grow up.


Great grandfather, on my mother's side, was named Jonathan Sisson. He had six children:

Betsey (my grandmother)

Of these Betsey was my grandmother and married Thomas White. Their children were ten in number:

Temperance (my mother)


While this booklet was in press the sad news came to us that Mrs. Anna (Pickard) Atkins passed away in Chicago at midnight of Saturday, December 18th, 1915, after an illness of four weeks of Typhoid fever. She was the daughter of William Pickard and Emma Ann (Yerxa) Pickard, and niece of the writer.

It was with deep sorrow and regret that we received word of her death, not only because of our love for her but because to her is credited the inspiration we received to compile this record. And now that death has called her just at its completion, the pleasure of receiving it can never be hers. We trust, however, that this effort has not been in vain; that the loved ones still with us will receive this little booklet with the same appreciation she would have felt had God spared her to us.