| Willis Dodge, a Tristram Dodge descendant
Willis DODGE, was born in Oneida County, NY, and grew up there until he was 20 years of age. At that time Willis DODGE made a trip to WI on foot and passed through Janesville, Rock County, when there was but one house there. He traveled all the way from NY to Fond du Lac, WI, and studied the country. He was so pleased with the appearance around where Janesville now stands that he bought land there and paid some upon his purchase, and then returned to NY. Nathaniel DODGE, his father, had not seen the land and naturally distrusting the judgment of youth, dissuaded him from either returning to Wisconsin or paying more upon the land, and to induce him to remain he bought him a farm in his home vicinity, paying for it $4,000, and there Willis DODGE remained until the death of his father.
Willis DODGE received a fair education in the common schools, and when his father had died he immediately made his way to the State which had so taken his boyish fancy. He bought farm on section 23 in Dane County, WI, improved it and added to it until he had 320 acres. When he came to this place there were very few improvements here, and he began at once to improve it. He found the land fine for wheat and could raise great crops of that cereal, but he had to haul it a long distance to Milwaukee and then sell it for from 25 to 50 cents per bushel. After a few years he built a better house, hauling the lumber from Nickeljohn's mills, a distance of 112 miles, by team, and this same house is still standing.
The first two marriages of Willis DODGE, took place in NY, but in WI he found his third wife, Miss Harriet CLOSS, a native of NY. From this marriage came a family of four children: Ella, married S. D. SMITH, and lives in New York township [NY]; John W.; Ida May, married George E. GRAHAM; and Hattie, lives at home. Willis DODGE died in 1882. The children of his first marriage were: Eunice, deceased; Amarilla, married O. CARSKADEN and lives in NY; Emily, married John JOHNSON and lives in York Township, Dane County, WI; and Adelia, died in IA and left three children. The children of the second marriage were: Roxy, deceased, died in KS and left one child; Eliza, married Malford H. CARSKADEN and lives in Prescott [Linn County], KS; Jane, is the mother of two children, married Philander PERKINS (deceased); Maria, married Fren HORAEHE (deceased); George W., who died in York Township [Dane County], WI; and Luraney, deceased, who married Eben PERKINS in NY.
The farm which Willis DODGE owned was rented at the time of his death, and as soon as the lease time was over, John W. DODGE, who was born on 05 Jul 1864, took charge of the place and now rents 320 acres for a cash rent. His aged mother finds a pleasant home with him. He is interested in creameries,conducting one in York Township, Dane County, WI, and a [p 509] partner, owning a half interest, conducts one in [the town of] Bristol [Dane County, WI].