Birth: 17 MAY 1851 New York
Click to view family photo album

Note: I had heard that William had been sent to Germany to be a Catholic priest and came back at age 21, told his dad off, and his dad disowned him; also, that he had helped to train John L. Sullivan in Boston while he continued his religious studies., and then, that he had inherited Chicago property from his mother’s will, but lost it in the Chicago fire. – Barbara Morse

Note:  Leland verified that William had been sent to a seminary by his father to become a priest.  When William’s mother died, she made William’s father promise that he would allow the children to choose their own religion.  Hiram was Catholic and Mary was Protestant.  Hiram promised he would do so, but after Mary died he went back on his promise and sent William to the seminary.  Evidently the nuns were very cruel to William.  He then left the seminary, told off his father, and moved to Michigan.  William did not actually attend college for the ministry, but back then you didn’t have to.  If a person wanted to be a minister they could be ordained by a church, and Leland said William was ordained by the Methodist Church.  And he had to apply to the State of Michigan and be registered by the State in order to legally perform marriage ceremonies.    – Jean Dusenberry

1860 Census: 21 JUN 1860
Place: 21st Ward NYC District 3, New York Co, New York, USA
Note:  Living with parents, Hiram and Martha Morse.

Note: Had at least two older brothers. Also, has 3 possible sets of parents: Hiram and Martha, Hiram and Nancy, and Noah and Sarah. Martha is probably a stepmother and Nancy is probably his real mother. Children of Hiram and Nancy are: Frederick, Clara, and William Franklin. Nancy died abt 1866 in New York State.

Note: The fact that William had at least one brother, Fredrick, possibly two, and one sister, Clara, and that he worked in a lumber camp, I found out from Jean Dusenberry. In looking at her letter, she says that “William’s mother was in her 50’s when he was born so he was a lot younger than his brother(s) and sister”.

1870 Census:  27 JUL 1870
Place: 14th Election District, 12th Ward, New York City, New York
Note:  Living with his parents, Hiram and Martha Morse

Occupation: Clerk in paper store
Date: 1870
Place: New York, New York, New York, USA

Occupation: Worked in a lumber yard. William and Alice met because Alice’s mom made William a shirt…

1st Marriage: 04 JUN 1873 Greenville, Michigan  to Alice Lillian Blodgett
Note: By Willard Potter, a Justice of the Peace. The witnesses to their marriage were Eugene Blodgett and Jessie Prior of Orleans, Ionia Co, Michigan.

Birth of Son:  22 DEC 1874
Name:  Frank Alonzo Morse
Place: Montcalm Co, Michigan

Birth of Daughter:  12 JAN 1878
Name:  Eva May Morse
Note:  Died when her highchair tipped over onto a hot stove

Birth of Daughter:  22 JUN 1879
Name:  Maude Mae Morse

1880 Census: 07 JUN 1880
Place: Otisco, Ionia, Michigan, USA
Note:  Wife, Alice, and two children living in household.

Birth of Daughter:  30 DEC 1881
Name:  Lula Belle Morse

Birth of Son:  12 JUL 1884
Name:  Myron Benjamin Morse

Birth of Son:  30 MAY 1887
Name:  Forrest Glen Morse

Birth of Daughter:  1 MAY 1890
Name:  Hattie Alice Morse

Birth of Daughter:  11 NOV 1892
Name:  Carrie Willetta Morse

Birth of Son:  8 NOV 1894
Name:  Fred William Morse

Birth of Daughter:  8 OCT 1896
Name:  Inez Ruth Morse

1900 Census: 18 JUN 1900
Place: Elbridge Twp, Oceana Co, Michigan, USA
Note:  Wife, Alice, and six children living in household.

Occupation: Preacher
Date: 1900
Place: Eldridge Twp, Oceana Co, Michigan, USA

Note: Preached in many different churches. One in Grand Rapids, One in Fountain, the Batchelor church in Elbridge Twp, etc. Was said to have memorized the entire Bible.

1910 Census: 05 MAY 1910
Place: Elbridge Twp, Oceana Co, Michigan, USA
Note: Wife, Alice, and three children living in household.

Occupation: 1910
Place: Eldridge Township, Oceana, Michigan, Minister and Farmer

2nd Marriage:  19 MAY 1913 Grand Rapids, Kent Co, Michigan  to Lydia (Dunkelberger) Dietz

 Family Picture:  Morse Family Picture taken during a birthday party for William


1920 Census: 21 JAN 1920
Place:  Georgetown, Ottawa Co, Michigan
Note:  Wife, Lydia, living in household.

Death: 19 JAN 1927 Greenville, Montcalm Co, Michigan

Burial:  Elbridge Twp Cemetery, Hart, Oceana Co, Michigan
Note: At the corner of 136th St. and Polk Rd.

Click here for parents:  Hiram Morse and Mary Syers

Alice Lillian Blodgett     

Birth: 27 SEP 1858 Michigan or Ohio

1870 Census:  01 SEP 1870
Place: Otisco Twp, Ionia Co, Michigan
Note:  Living with step-father and mother, Thomas and Sarah Sharky.

Occupation:  Teacher.
Note:  The kids made up this rhyme about her, “Oh, dear, oh, dear, poor Miss Blodgett…she’s gonna hit me and I’m gonna dodge it!!”   
Occupation: Midwife. Never lost a mother or a baby.

Death: 20 SEP 1912
Place: Elbridge Twp, Oceana Co, Michigan
Note: Died from leukemia.

Obituary: Our minister’s wife, Mrs. Wm. F. Morse, died Friday evening, September 20, of cancer of the stomach. She leaves a husband, eight children, and friends to mourn her loss. Funeral services were held Tuesday afternoon in the Elbridge church, conducted by Elder C. S. Wright, and the remains laid to rest in the Elbridge cemetery.

Burial: Elbridge Twp Cemetery, Hart, Oceana Co, Michigan
Note: At the corner of 136th St. and Polk Rd.

Click here for parents:  Alonzo Blodgett and Sarah Ann Morgan

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