Biography of Rev. Theodore L. Pillsbury
Berry County, MI Biographies



Barry County

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Also see [Railway Officials in America 1906]

Theodore L. Pillsbury was born in the town of Camden, Lincoln Co., Me., Nov. 27, 1811. His grandfather, Joseph Pillsbury, was a soldier in the Revolution. He was a member of Washington's Life Guard, from which he was transferred to that of Gen. Lafayette. He seryed with distinction throughout the war, and at its close settled in Maine, where he died at an advanced age. Patriotism has always been a salient point in the character of the Pillsburys. Johnson Pillsbury, son of Joseph, and father of Theodore L. was in the war of 1812. He was a man of positive character and inflexible integrity. He was married in 1781 to Miss Priscilla Cooper, a descendant of Governor Bartlett and a cousin of Peter Cooper, and reared a family of thirteen children,-uine girls and four boys. Theodore received an academical education, and upon the completion of his course entered a theological school, where he spent several years as a teacher and pupil. At the age of twenty seven lie was ordained, and commenced his ecclesiastical labors. He preached in Maine until 1844, when he was sent by the Baptist Home Missionary Society to Wisconsin. He located in Milwaukee, where he remained several years. As a minister he was zealous and energetic, and his labors were successful.

From Milwaukee he went ten miles above Oshkosh, and founded the town of Omro; from thence to Racine, where he preached several years. About this time his health failed, and he resigned his pastorate and engaged in the manufacture of carriages and wagons. In this enterprise he remained two years. He then sold his business and came to Barry County, and purchased the farm on which he now resides. He continued to preach, however, end for two years was the pastor of the Baptist Church in Woodland. He then established a church in Carlton, over which he presided until 1862, when he was elected chaplain of the Twenty-First Michigan Infantry. He accompanied the regiment to the front, and evinced the same energy and enthusiasm in the field that he did in the pulpit, and the temporal and spiritual welfare of the soldiers in his charge were never neglected. He was compelled, however, to resign his position before the close of the war on account of ill health. He returned to his home and assisted in raising a company for the Eleventh Michigan Cavalry. In 1835 the elder was married to Miss Mary N. Keene, of Waldoboro', Franklin Co., Me., where she was born, in 1814. She is a lady of culture and refinement, and highly esteemed by all who know her. Elder Pillsbury is a man of pronounced temperance principles, and has been an earnest worker in temperance reform. He delivered the first lecture upon temperance in Hastings, and perhaps no man in Barry County has done more in the advancement of the cause than he.

In his political belief Mr. Pillsbury was originally an Abolitionist, and many a fugitive slave he aided in obtaining freedom. On the organization of the Republican party he became an able exponent of its principles, and has since labored in its interests. Socially he is genial and courteous, comes in contact. He has taken a conspicuous position in all enterprises devoted to the interests of Carltori, and is in every way worthy of the position he holds among the represeutative men of the county.

History of Allegan and Berry Counties, Michigan
With Illistrations and Biographical Sketches
of Their Men and Pioneers.
D. W. Ensign & Co., Philadelphia 1880
Press of J. B. Lippincoff & Co., Philadelphia.

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