The Highland Township Historical Society
Highland, Oakland County, Michigan



Portrait and Biographical Album of Oakland County, Michigan, Chapman Bros. (1891), pp. 422-423

JOSEPH V. HAGADORN, of Highland Township, is a son of John L., whose father John Hagadorn, was a native of Holland.  He came to Rensselaer County, N. Y., in an early day and there reared his family.  In that county the father of our subject was born, and when a young man be went to Steuben County, where he was married and resided until he came to Michigan in 1834.  His wife was Dorcas, a daughter of James Brown.  To them were born eight children: William, Stephen, George, John, Joseph, (our subject), Charles, Esther, and Hannah.  These children were all born in Polka Township, Steuben County.

When John L. Hagadorn came to Michigan he settled in Green Oak two miles northwest of South Lyon in Livingston County.  Here he lived and died, being sixty-five years of age at the time of his decease.  His wife remained on the farm until her death which occurred at the age of seventy-two years.  Mr. Hagadorn took eighty acres from the Government, upon which he put in the genuine hard work of a pioneer farmer. Hie was a poor man when he came to Michigan and by hard work he obtained a comfortable property.  He was a Democrat in politics and he and his good wife were efficient and active members of the Methodist Episcopal Church.   There was no schoolhouse in Green Oak when Mr. Hagadorn came to the township.

Joseph V. Hagadorn was born January 6, 1827, in Steuben County, N. Y., and was seven years old when his parents brought him to Michigan.   He remembers vividly the days when Indians and wild animals abounded and looks back with pleasure to his boyish enjoyment of venison and bear steaks.  He was once chased by wolves while he was taking care of his father's sheep.  He and his brother caught a fawn which they kept as a pet for some time.  When sixteen years old he went to work by the month on a farm.  He not only supported himself but helped his father.   The first pair of boots he ever had he earned himself.  His mother was very energetic and industrious and she used to card and spin wool and make woolen and linen goods from which she made clothes for the family.  She sold considerable linen thread of her own manufacture to merchants at Kensington.  She was a small woman but a great worker.

When our subject was of age he left home.  Previous to that time he had worked out by the month near home, except during two years, when he rented a farm of David Picket in Milford Township.  In 1848 he was married in Milford Township to Caroline, daughter of Philip and Hulda (Inman) Johnson, of whom mention is made elsewhere in this book.  The young couple moved to Lyon Township and made their home on the farm now owned by Henry Smith, one hundred acres of which the young man had purchased.  But their wedded happiness was of short duration for after six months the young wife died.  The new farm was now no longer attractive to the bereaved husband and he sold it and removed to a farm of eighty acres in Green Oak Township.  Here he lived for thirteen years after which he sold it and bought one hundred and sixty acres in another part of the township.  In 1866 he came to Highland Township where he still makes his home.  His first farm in this township consisted of one hundred and twenty acres, and he now owns a small farm near Highland Station where he resides.

His second marriage united him with Almira [Begin Page 423] Loomis, with whom he lived for fourteen years, when she died leaving five children, of whom only one survives.  His third wife, Sarah Reed, was the mother of three daughters, who are all now living.  His fourth wife was Sabrina, daughter of Alonzo Lockwood, a resident of Highland Township.  Her two children are Mandie and Elsie.  The son of the second marriage is Charles H. by name and the children of the third marriage are: Cora, Emma and Edith.  Mr. Hagadorn is a Republican in his political sympathies and is a conscientious voter but never aspired to office.  His church connection is with the Free Will Baptist Church.  Besides his small farm he has abundant means, the interest on which gives him an ample income.


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