Original Highland Township Landowner
Rev. John N. Cosart
The Reverend John N. Cosart was born in New York circa 1795 and became a Methodist preacher and circuit rider in western New York. He served as pastor in Lockport, New York, in the late 1820's and appears on an 1833 list of Methodist clergy as living at Friendship, Allegany County, New York.
Rev. Cosart came to Michigan circa 1835. On June 30, 1835, he purchased a parcel in Section 36 of Hartland, Livingston County, and the next day made his entry in Section 32 of Highland Township, Oakland County. He is believed to have settled on the parcel in Hartland, since land transactions made in 1836 give his residence as Livingston County and he appears in Hartland on the 1850 and 1860 Censuses.
Soon after arriving in Michigan Rev. Cosart resumed his ministery and is frequently mentioned in connection with the early history of Methodism in Livingston County. He was a pastor at Brighton in 1836 when he was called to Howell, preached the first Methodist sermon there and helped found the local Sunday class. In 1838-39 he conducted the first religious service in Handy Township at the home of Richard P. Bush.
Rev. John N. Cosart married first, Louisa Stowell, born October 8, 1811, at Lebanon, Madison County, New York, the daughter of Rev. Paul and Nancy Ann (Richards) Stowell. She is said to have drowned in Lake Erie on September 13, 1839. He married second, February 23, 1840, Catherine Bird, born circa 1815 in New Jersey; died April 15, 1898. Rev. Cosart himself died in Vernon, Shiawassee County, Michigan, in 1872.