07 November 2008

The Augustus Backus Family In Wayne Co., MI, Probate Records

Because I still (after 20+ years) can't find when and where Laura BACKUS Richmond died (after 1870 and probably in or near Lapeer Co., MI), I tend to check Backus records with added interest looking for any clue that would lead me back to Laura. Nothing in this blog entry helped me with Laura Backus Richmond, unless crossing the Wayne County Probate files off my Backus research "bucket list" counts. However, many Backus's are descended from William Backus (b. ca 1610), including me and including the Backus family in this blog post, so it furthered my Backus research in general.

Probate Records from the Archives of Wayne Co., MI:


Backus, Cordelia, of Detroit

Filed 27 December 1865

Petitioners: Charlotte C. & Albert P. Backus

Estate $400

Beneficiaries: Charlotte C. (19) daughter & Albert P. Backus (17), son.

H. W. Deare, Judge Probate

Approved: 26 March 1866

Brady E. Backus Appointed Guardian

When I found this abstracted probate record for Cordelia Backus, I did not know where she and her "Backus" husband fit in the family tree. Were they related to Mary Laithy (Brady) Backus, daughter of General Hugh Brady, based upon Brady E. Backus appointment as guardian of Cordelia Backus's children?

Since Cordelia Backus died ca December 1865, I first looked in the 1860 census for her and for Brady E. Backus. They were found in Grand Rapids, Michigan as follows:

1860 MI Kent Co., Grand Rapids

Backus, Augustus, 67, stave manufacturer, b. NY

", Cordelia, 49, b. CT

", Herbert A., 25, NY

", Brady E., teacher, b. NY

", Pauline, 19, b. NY

", Arthur M., 16, b. NY

", Charlotte, 13, b. NY

", Albert P., 10, b. NY

In Clark's Detroit City Directory of 1865/66 the following entries were found*:

Backus, Arthur, shipping clerk, Scotten & Lovett's, boards 17 Croghan St.

", Augustus, piano tuner, home - 17 Croghan Street

", Brady E., lawyer, 124 Jefferson, home 17 Croghan Street

*HeritageQuest online

IGI records (familysearch.org) list that Augustus Backus, b. ca 1815, married Martha Cordelia Mann ca 1840 in Troy, New York.

Other entries taken from the Archives of Michigan's microfilmed probate records of Wayne County, MI, confirm the family's connection with Mary L. Brady -- Augustus Brady was her brother-in-law. Mary was married to Electus Backus, son of Elecutus & Sabra (Judson) Backus.

Wayne County, Michigan, Probate records - Electus Backus Estate #3492:

BACHUS, Electus

Colonel in U.S. Army


Died 7 June 1862


Wife of Electus 1862

d. 11 Feb 1883

BACHUS, Mary Electa (WARD)

Daughter of estate

BACHUS, Augustus

Brother of estate 1862

Charlotte Backus, daughter of Cordelia & Augustus Backus, was found with her sister Pauline in Cuyahoga Co, Ohio, in the 1880 census (familysearch.org).

1880 OH Cuyahoga Co., Cleveland
Joseph STRINGHAM Self M Male W 39 MI Fire Insurance Agent MI MI
Pauline STRINGHAM Wife M Female W 39 NY Keeping House NY CT
Joseph STRINGHAM Son S Male W 10 MI At School MI NY
Charlotte BACKUS SisterL S W 30 NY NY CT
Rosa CRAWLEY Other S Female W 19 SCOT Servant IRE SCOT

A check of the Cleveland, Ohio, Necrology file revealed no further information on the Stringhams or Charlotte Backus.

Albert P. Backus married Ada Farr per the record here and was living in Detroit (Blaine Street) in the 1900 census.

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