Submitted by: Betty C. Miller Jackson



Charles Jackson has been a resident of Eaton County nearly half a century and is one of the substantial farmers and highly esteemed citizens of Sunfield Township, his attractive homestead being located in section 12. Mr. Jackson was born in Cambridgeshire, England, February 11, 1834, being a son of John and Mary Ann Jackson, concerning whom more specific mention is made in the sketch of their son, Mann Jackson, appearing on other pages of this work. Charles Jackson received his educational training in the schools of his native land, where he was reared to the age of eighteen years. He then came to America, landing in New York City in April 1852, after having been four weeks and two days on the ocean, the voyage having been made in a sailing vessel of the type common to that period. He found employment on a farm in Wayne county, New York, where he remained four years, at the expiration of which, in 1856, he came to Michigan, passing the greater portion of the first year on a farm near Portland, Ionia County. In 1857, he came to Eaton County and purchased forty acres of his present homestead, reclaiming the land from the virgin forest and later purchasing an adjoining tract of forty acres in the same township and forty acres across the road, in Roxand Township

so that his landed estate now comprises one hundred and twenty acres, the same being well improved and constitution one of the valuable farms of this part of the county. The house is a commodious frame structure, and on the place are two large barns and other excellent buildings. When he first took up residence on his homestead, Mr. Jackson built a log house of the type common to the pioneer epoch, and this continued to be the family home for a period of twenty years, being then replaced by the present comfortable frame dwelling. Mr. Jackson gives his allegiance to the Republican Party and takes a lively interest in local affairs, but he has never consented to become a candidate for office, save that of pathmaster, in which he served several terms. He and his wife have been members of the Baptist church for more than twenty years. May 1, 1859, was solemnized the marriage of Mr. Jackson to Miss Keziah Dilley, who was born both native of England, where the former was in England, September 11, 1839, being a daughter of John and Sarah (Pattle) Dilley, born June 7, 1810, and the latter December 9, 1812, both passing the closing years of their lives in Sunfield Township, this county, where the father died December 3, 1893, and the mother March 3, 1896. They came from England in 1856 and took up their residence in Eaton County, Mr. Dilley buying forty acres of wild land, in Sunfield Township, there reclaimed a good farm, upon which he and his devoted wife passed the residue of their lives, the old homestead now being owned by their son, Robert. They became the parents of ten children: Keziah died in England, at the age of one year; Josiah is a resident of Portland, Ionia County; Mrs. Jackson was next in order of birth; David, John, Mercy, Frank, Jonas and Mercy (2d) are deceased; and Robert resides in the village of Sunfield and is employed as a rural mail carrier. Mr. and Mrs. Jackson have three children: Mercy, who was born March 8, 1860, is the wife of Wallace Austin, of Roxand Township, and they have six children; James, who was born September 26, 1866, resides with his family in the parental home and has charge of the farm; he married Miss May Lippencott and they have three children; May, who was born March 25, 1875, is the wife of Lawrence Knapp of Ionia County, and they have one child. 

Past & Present of Eaton County Page 389-90

Descendants of Charles Jackson

CHARLES JACKSON was born February 11, 1834 in Soham. Cambridgeshire, England, son of JOHN JACKSON and MARY ANN MANN and died August 09, 1907 in Sunfield Township, Eaton County, Michigan. He married KEZIAH DILLEY May 01, 1859, daughter of JOHN DILLEY and SARAH PATTLE. She was born September 13, 1838 in England, and died April 31, 1931 in Sunfield Township, Eaton County, Michigan.


i. MERCY ANN JACKSON, b. March 08, 1860, Sunfield Township, Eaton County, Michigan; d. November 06, 1949, Roxand Township, Eaton County, Michigan; m. WALLACE M. AUSTIN, September 05, 1880; b. June 27, 1854, Michigan; d. March 06, 1911, Roxand Township, Eaton County, Michigan.

ii. JAMES SIMEON JACKSON, b. September 26, 1866, Sunfield Township, Eaton County, Michigan; d. June 02, 1944, his home in Sunfield Township, Eaton County, Michigan; m. FLORENCE MAY LIPPINCOTT, June 03, 1891, home of the brides parents in Sebewa, Ionia County, Michigan; b. May 03, 1871, Havana, Ohio; d. September 17, 1961, Sunfield Township, Eaton County, Michigan.

iii. SARAH MAY JACKSON, b. March 25, 1877, Sunfield Township, Eaton County, Michigan; d. May 02, 1959; m. LAWRENCE E. KNAPP, Abt. 1898; b. Abt. 1877, Michigan; d. February 03, 1943.

Herald Newspaper, Oct 15, 1929


Headline: The Herald’s


Today- Mrs. Keziah Dilley Jackson, Sunfield

 “Aunt Kit” Came over from England on a Sailboat in 1851 and settled in Sunfield, then a Forest.


Sunfield, Oct 15 – “Aunt Kit” is the friendly term by which Mrs. Keziah Dilley –Jackson, 91 “grand old lady” of Sunfield is known by everyone in this village and scores of friends throughout this district. 

Mrs. Jackson was born Sept. 16, 1838 in Soham, England and when 13 years of age with her parents came to the United States on the Sailboat “Mary”. The trip required 13 weeks in the water.  

Arriving in New York, they settled in Elmira. After 4 years, they moved to a farm near Portland MI.  In 1858 they moved to Sunfield and in March 1859, she was married to Charles Jackson.  This country was all a mass of solid timber into which this bride and groom started on the great adventure.  Mr. Jackson cleared 40 acres of land, which is now owned by her son Jim, with whom she makes her home.

Three children were born to this union. Mrs. Mercy Austin of Mulliken, Mrs. Lawrence Knapp of Sebewa and Jim Jackson of Sunfield.  They also raised a niece from childhood, Mrs. Jim Nichol of Lake Odessa.

 Mrs. Jackson’s husband died in 1907 and ever since she has lived with her son and wife on the old homestead.  

One very amusing incident, in her life will never be forgotten – The Indians who roamed in this locality in those days in hordes often called at their home. One night a young squaw came to their home with her baby dropping over her arm nearly dead with “croup”.  Aunt Kit (as she was called) applied home remedies and revived the child which pleased the Indians so much that they called her “mother’ and no favor was ever too much to do for the one who saved the life of the young papoose. 

                                                                          Is still active

Aunt Kit is very useful and active woman today.  She is up very early every morning and never retires until after 9 pm, nor does she take a nap during the day. She helps with all the household duties of a farmer and does patching and mending for the whole household.  She is a Christian woman with a kind loving disposition and is still an active

Member of the M.E. church. On Sept 16th she celebrated her 91st birthday.              Submitted by: Sara Dianne Austin Myers



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