James Allen Noyes Photo


James Allen Noyes original


James Allen Noyes (adjusted)

Courtesy of Nancy Benton, we have this photo of James Allen Noyes (direct line). James Allen Noyes was born Dec 22, 1826 in Ann Arbor, Washtenaw, Michigan to James Noyes and Sally Marble. He married Caroline Atwell in June 28 1859. They moved to the free-thought community of Liberal, Missouri, where he died Jan 24, 1901.

James Allen Noyes in Later Years


James Allen Noyes (original)


James Allen Noyes (adjusted)

James Allen Noyes, born 1822 at Ann Arbor, Michigan, was the husband of Caroline Atwell Noyes. In 1882 they moved to the freethought community of Liberal, Missouri where this photo would have been taken in James’ later years. He died in Liberal in 1901. More information on the family is here.

Ray Noyes’ Obituaries

Ray Noyes, husband of Elizabeth Jane “Bettie” Brewer, was the son of James Allen Noyes and Caroline Atwell Noyes. He lived in Liberal, Missouri. Ray is of our line.


Lamar Democrat Obituary

LAMAR DEMOCRAT obituary (Tuesday, January 21, 1941) for Ray NOYES reads:
“Ray Noyes dead–Ray NOYES, one of West Barton’s best known men, died at his home just west of Liberal at 4:15 Monday morning. The cause of his death was coronary occlusion, a spasmodic contraction of the arteries of the heart. He had suffered a good deal for several years from cardiac asthma thugh he was always up and about. Ray Noes was born at Anna, Illinois, January 4, 1874. He had just passed his 67th anniversary. He was the son of James A. and Caroline NOYES. When a lad of eight he came to Barton County with his parents, in 1882. The family made the trip in a covered wagon. Ray’s father bought and improved a farm near Liberal, Ray grew up in the Liberal community and was destined to live there for fifty nine years — to the end of his days. In 1895 he married Miss Betty BREWER. He leaves her together with five children, one son and four daughters. The son is Mr. James R. NOYES, northwest Barton’s largest and most successful farmer. The daughters are Mrs. Charles BRYANT of Liberal, Mrs. Cora DICKSON of Shreveport, Mrs. Lloyd MCKINNIE of Ponca City, and Mrs. Phil HURT of Laurenburg, NC.”


Last Rites Were at Home


With All His Childlren and Many Friends Gathered to Pay Final Tribute to Liberal’s Notable Citizens, Ray Noyes, As the Casket Lay In the Home, Final Services Were Held After Which the Casket Was Escorted to Its Last Resting Place in the Liberal Cemetery

Funeral services were held for the late Ray Noyes, at the family home, just west of Liberal, at 11 o’clock Wednesday a.m. Mrs. Noyes was yet unable to sit up and was compelled to be in bed during the services. Her daughters wrapped her warmly and supported her to the side of the casket where she took a last, lingering, loving look at the features of the husband of her youth. They put her back to bed before the services started.

A large group of relatives were present from out of the county. Bob Harmon brought his mother Mrs. O. E. Harmon, Ray’s only sister, from Shreveport. Mrs. Paul Noyes was present from Springfield.

All of the children were present. Mrs. Phil Hurt was there from Laurenburg, North Caroline; Mrs. Cora Dixon was present from Shreveport. Mrs. Lloyd McKennie, with her husband and her two sons, was there from Ponca City.

Carl Kenantz directed the funeral. Rev. Earl Bingham conduced the service. Miss (cut off) Bette Lee Bainter? sang Whispering Hope and Beautiful Isel of Somewhere. They were accompanied upon the piano by Miss Geraldine Sechrist.

The casket bearers were Robert Sweatt, Ewin Lipscomb, Buford Harkins, Robert Williams, Frank Curless Jr., and Mas Davidson Jr.

The flower bearers were the members of the Friendly Folks club. There was a fine floral offering and upon the casket was a beautiiful piece wrought from lillies and red roses.

Following the service at the home, the casket was escorted to the Liberal cemetery where the frail body of this notable, vibrant and vital poineer of Liberal was reverently lowered to its final rest.

Courtesy Nancy Benton. Transcribed by JMK


Ray Noyes Obituary

FRIDAY, Jaunary 24, 1941

Ray Noyes Dies After One Week’s Illness

Ray Noyes, aged 67, died at his home two and one half miles southeast of Liberal at 4:15 January 20 after a week’s illness of flu and complications.

Mr. Noyes was well known throughout the county as a very successful and prosperous farmer. He was a good man and a substantial citizen. He was worthy of and had the respect of the entire community. He was devoted to his family, by whom he will be greatly missed, and passing represents a loss to the entire commuity.

Ray Noyes was the son of James A. and Caroline Noyes. He was born at Anna, Ill., January 4, 1874. In 1882 he came with his parents to Barton county in a covered wagon. He was marrried to Miss Betty Brewer in 1895. To this union five children were born, namely Mrs. Chas. Bryant of northeast of Liberal; Mrs. Cora Dickson of Shreveport, LA; Mrs. Loyd McKennie, Ponca City, Okla; Mrs. Philip Hurt, Laurinburg, N.C., and Jim Noyes of near Liberal. There are ten grand children and one great grand child. He also leaves a sister, Mrs. Viola Harmon, formerly of Liberal but now of Monroe, La.

Funeral services were held at the home Wednesday morning at 11:00 o’clock with Rev. Earl Bingham of Mapleton, Kans., officiating.

The many beautiful flower sprays expressed the esteem and sympathy the folk of this community have for the family.

Burial was in the Liberal cemetery. The Konantz Funeral Service had charge of the body.

All the children were present for the funeral also his sister, Mrs. Harmon and son Bob Harmon of Monroe, La.

Transcribed by JMK

Obituaries are courtesy of Nancy Benton.

James Noyes Originally Owned the Land Upon Which is the University of Michigan

A mention of James Noyes is found in the History of Washtenaw County, Michigan” by Chas. C. Chapman & Co., published in 1881.

In August, 1827, Elisha W. Rumsey died in the house built by Mr. Osterhaut, and the tavern was occupied about this time by Oliver Whitmore. Mr. Rumsey was captain of the first militia company organized in this county, and the first training by the militia was in 1825. One small company then comprised the entire militia of this county. His brother, Judge Henry Rumsey, bought 80 acres of land from James Noyes, in 1825, including the grounds of the University of Michigan.”

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E. W. Rumsey was a co-founder of Ann Arbor, Michigan. But when I look him up I find that Elisha Rumsey was instead Walker Rumsey of Bethany, Genesee County, NY. And he was running from the law when he first arrived in Michigan.

…he bought pork at Canada and packed it. Rodney Taylor helped him cut and pack it, and send it to Albany. In this way he became acquainted with Trotter & Co., the firm in Albany who bought his pork, and who sent him $3000 to buy cattle with. He advertised for the farmers to bring in their cattle on specified days at the center of Bethany and Stafford, but he failed to appear. Some time before this his wife and he had become acquainted with Ann Sprague, a grass widow of prepossessing attractions. Now, Rumsey, after receiving the $3000, went with Ann Sprague to Canada with his pockets full of money. After getting there he found, if caught in that country, it would be worse for him than if caught in the states; hence, he now starts for Michigan.

Rumsey wasn’t committing bigamy, his wife had died by this time. He was found in Michigan and taken to Albany to jail twice before the matter was finished with. Because of this matter, he changed his name.

There’s an interesting bit on Judge Henry Rumsey from the website of the Ann Arbor Fraternity No.262:

Among the founding members of the Western Star Lodge was Mr. Henry Rumsey, the blood brother of one of the two men who founded the city of Ann Arbor. Ann Arbor was founded in 1824 by John Allen of Virginia and Elisha W. Rumsey of New York, who traveled from Detroit by one-horse sleigh with the purpose of establishing a town and selling land. John Allen sold the house he originally built in the area; at the corner of what is now Huron and First Streets, to his brother James in 1824. James Allen constructed on the log cabin home and increased its size to open it as “Allen’s Tavern,” which became well known as “Bloody Corners” because the building had a vivid red paint finish. It was in this very tavern that in 1827 the first Masonic Lodge in the area was formed by a number of local Freemasons including Henry Rumsey, brother of Elisha Rumsey. Western Star Lodge No. 6 received dispensation from the Grand Lodge of Michigan on January 16, 1827.

One thus can envision the bright red tavern of James Allen, who co-founded Ann Arbor with Elisha (nee Walker) in 1824.

I’m assuming that the James Noyes referred to here is the elder, born 1771, married to Rebecca Russell. They had settled in Michigan by 1824 with their family, and lived in Ann Arbor after its founding. His son James Noyes and Sally Marble had James Allen Noyes in 1826. I’m thinking that in all probability, the middle name of Allen was given James Allen in honor of the Allen family.

The following portion from a talk given to the Washtenaw County Historical Society, in 1997, by Dean Emeritus Russell E. Bidlack, School of Library Science at the University of Michigan, further reveals that the Allens were also on the run when they came to Michigan, and that Ann, the wife of John, didn’t think much of Ann Arbor.

John Allen was a widower with two children of his own which was fine except he was very much in debt as a result of some bad investments made by his father, Col. James Allen.

I can’t go into the story of John Allen today but debts that John assumed for himself for a while on behalf of his father amounted to $40,000, a horrendous amount of money.

Before the marriage, however, documents on file in the court records of Augusta County prove that John transferred the debts, along with his own farm his father had given him earlier, so that when the creditors foreclosed and took everything, it was the father that had owed the debts for the most part…

John, with Ann, moved to his unclaimed farm. His two children were with his parents, Col. James and Elizabeth Allen. Throughout their youth they were with their grandparents.

And, when Ann went with John to John’s farm, she left her two sons with James McCue, who had immediately declared himself their guardian, with a $10,000 bond, so they would be protected from their new step-father.

On May 10, 1823, Ann Allen gave birth to her only child by John, a daughter, Sarah Ann, the daughter whom I described earlier from the letter. She was named for her grandmother who happened to die the same year in Virginia.

That autumn Ann with her new daughter moved back to James McCue’s home, while John went on a money-making venture to Baltimore.

The stories passed down by different branches of the family vary somewhat. I have one written record along with the traditions but we know in any case that John took a herd of cattle to Baltimore.

That was the way you took cattle to market in those days. It’s 200 miles to Baltimore from the Staunton area yet to go to market you had to drive the cattle. He must have had some help, a boy or something. Of course these were not really his cattle. Either he had bought them on credit, which is one version, or the cattle actually belonged to the neighbors who couldn’t afford to take only one or two to market. According to the other version it was customary to get a herd together in the fall and somebody would volunteer to take them.

In any case everybody expected John to come back but he did not. Weeks, months passed. According to an account written by the son of James McCue, who grew up with Ann’s two sons, it became a general rumor that he’d been murdered.

Actually, he had sold the cattle for several hundred dollars. He was now 27 years old. He set out for Buffalo. He heard that you could buy government land for $1.25 an acre in such places as Ohio or Michigan Territory and somewhere he had read about how you could buy $1.25 land–lay out some lots, give some lots to merchants, mechanics blacksmiths and so on and start a town.

You could start a town and your property would increase in value so he had this in mind…

Meanwhile, back in Virginia, the rumor about murder had been cleared up. The tax collector in 1824 wrote one word after John’s name–absconded. That ended John’s career in Augusta County.

After spending November and December, 1823, in Buffalo and getting some advice there, John decided to go to Detroit. It was too late to cross on the lake so he hired a Frenchman to guide him through Canada.

…while in Detroit, I’m sure it was in a tavern–there were five of them in Detroit at that point–he became acquainted with another man who was also looking to buy land but definitely in Michigan Territory.

This was a man named Elisha Walker Rumsey…

…Governor Cass may have told him about a trip he had taken along the Huron River and he had discovered there was a very nice spot on the Huron with oak openings that would be a mighty nice place for a village.

I think that was exactly where Elisha and John set out for in their sleigh in February, 1824, to explore. I think they knew what they were looking for. In any case, they chose the spot that became Ann Arbor and began building.

How Ann and his parents learned of his whereabouts, I’m not sure when it happened. I know they received a letter in August 1824.

It happened that John had an aunt, Jane Trimble, his father’s sister. If you know your Ohio history, there was a Governor Trimble–that was her son. She was back in Virginia visiting relatives. She wrote her son back in Ohio on August 24, 1824.

She said that Col. James Allen had been to the McCue home where she was visiting. (Her daughter had married James McCue.) She said a letter had arrived directing John’s father which way to go to Ann Arbor. The wording suggests to me that this was not the first news the parents had about John’s whereabouts.

Ann, too, had received a letter, included in the one to his father, telling her he wanted her to come to Ann Arbor and bring their daughter. He knew very well that her two sons would not be able to come–the guardian would keep them in Virginia.

The parents were expecting to go because in the foreclosure of all James Allen’s land he had been given until October 1, 1824, to move out of the mansion. A colonel in the militia, an elder in the Presbyterian Church, had come to this bad end….

They went by covered wagon. Happily, Turner Allen kept notes and later wrote a detailed account of the journey, exactly how they went, difficulties they had–the wagon tipped over at one point. They had four horses to pull the wagon, three to drive.

Ann rode almost all the way according to her own statements, carrying her daughter in her lap. She was an experienced rider as were all Southern ladies according to Dr. Faust, primarily because the plantations were so far apart and horseback was the only logical way of transportation. How did they ride? Sidesaddle. Imagine Ann on this almost two-month trip riding side saddle.

Ann greatly feared Indians. Turner Allen told about one time when they were camping near Indians and Ann said, “Their cattle even low savage.”

They arrived in Detroit. John was there to meet them; then they went to the new settlement and they arrived October 16, 1824. (Once I wrote October 24 for which I apologize.)

John showed Ann around. I can imagine Ann’s shock. Perhaps the best way I can describe that is to quote from a lady arriving two weeks after Ann. This was Harriet Noble who came with her husband, her husband’s brother and his wife and nine children in all, from New York.

They had been there earlier and John helped them find land near Ann Arbor village. They came to take up their land and build their cabins.

This is what Harriet Noble remembered: “There were six or seven log huts, occupied by as many inmates as could crawl into them. It was too much to think of asking strangers to give us a place to stay in even for one night under such circumstances.

“Mr. John Allen, himself, made us the offer of sharing with him the comforts of a shelter from storm if not from cold. The house was large for a log one but quite unfinished. There was a ground floor and a single loft above. (John’s family was in here along with two or three men he hired in Detroit to help build the huts.)

“When we got our things stored in the place we found the number to be sheltered to be 21 women and children and 14 men. There were only two bedsteads in the house and those, who could not occupy these, slept on feather beds on the floor.

“When the children were put to bed you could not set a foot down without stepping on a foot or a hand. The consequence was we had music most of the time.

“We cooked our meals in the open air, there being no fire in the house except a small box stove. The fall winds were not very favorable for such business. We would frequently find our clothes on fire.

“We did not often get burned but when one meal was over we dreaded to start the next. We lived in this way until our husbands got a log house with a roof on. That took them six weeks.”

I imagine Ann was fretting during this period.

The cabin that had been built by John Allen lasted until they could build a cabin for his parents. Then John’s two children by his first wife moved in with their grandparents, as they had always lived with them. John built a fireplace and in February 1825 he wrote a letter to Aunt Jane Trimble, which happily survives.

I’ll quote a paragraph. As I talk about him imagine a man who is always optimistic, always striving to be a leader, dreaming great dreams, imagining he would be wealthy as his father once had been, confident.

“We live in a small log house, one room down, one room upstairs or rather up ladder, with a good fireplace and cooking stove by which Ann does the work of our family with ease and none to fret or put her out of temper. When the business of the day is through with and we’ve seated ourselves around the fire there is none to disturb us. We lie down and rise up contented and happy.”

I would love to have a letter written by Ann about this.

Ann was deeply religious. She was a Presbyterian. She read a great deal of Presbyterian literature along with other literature.

She was certainly ill-prepared to be a pioneer wife. She did not find any Southerners in Ann Arbor; the rest of the settlers came from New York and New England. Except for her mother-in-law, she was alone among Yankee settlers.

She was sometimes referred to in later years as being melancholy. I suspect she had good reason. She had never performed domestic labor before and here she found herself a pioneer among Yankee women who were accustomed to not only working in the house but outdoors as well.

Furthermore, she had a growing feeling of guilt that she had left two little boys, motherless, back in Virginia. As weeks and months passed she wondered whether they would even remember her. I suspect Ann Allen had relatively few happy days in her 18 years in Ann Arbor.

One time she wrote to her son, Thomas, when he had suggested he might come to Ann Arbor to live. She urged him not to. She said the settlers are nothing but scapegoats who have made their place as a refuge from creditors for unlawful deeds. Unprincipled, they live by art and cunning. He who can outwit his neighbor is the better man–her view of Yankees.

John Allen took up Yankee ways himself. He began condemning slavery. He had owned eight slaves that he lost in the father’s debts. I suspect Ann never saw the evil in slavery.

Noyes Burials at Liberal City Cemetery

At Find-a-Grave, an individual has placed up memorials for Liberal City Cemetery, including members of the Noyes family. There are (sadly) no photos, just names and inscriptions on the headstones. The person must not have been a member of the family as family members are unlinked. I’ve sent a request for them to be linked, but I’ve not heard back yet.

The family members who are there:

Cora Rachel Greene, daughter of James Allen Noyes and Caroline Atwell. She is currently listed as Cora B. Greene. I’ve asked for a correction on that. Cora married Frank Greene. He’s not listed at Find-a-Grave and I don’t know what happened to him after Cora died.

Emma Viola Noyes Harmon daughter of James Allen Noyes and Caroline Atwell. She married Orrin Ellie Harmon.

Orrin Elliot Harmon, husband of Emma Viola Noyes.

Elizabeth “Bettie” Jane Noyes wife of Ray Noyes, son of James Allen Noyes and Caroline Atwell.

Caroline Atwell Noyes wife of James Allen Noyes, daughter of Hiram Atwell and Rachel Scagel. I also have a tombstone image here.

James William Noyes, son of Ray James Noyes and Eula Millard, grandson of Ray Noyes and Elizabeth Jane “Bettie” Brewer

James Allen Noyes son of James Noyes and Sally Marble, husband of Caroline Atwell. I also have a tombstone image here.

Luella E. Bunton Noyes wife of James Noyes, son of Ray James Noyes and Eula Millard, grandson of Ray Noyes and Elizabeth Jane “Bettie” Brewer

Ray Noyes, son of James Allen Noyes and Caroline Atwell, husband of Elizabeth Jane “Bettie” Brewer

Victor Hugo Noyes, son of James Allen Noyes and Caroline Atwell

James Noyes and Sally Marble

James Noyes, born Sep 13, 1793 at Worcester County, Massachusetts, died Aug 26 1864 at Pavilion, Kalamazoo, Michigan. On Sep 6, 1815 he married first, at Pavilion, Kalamazoo, Michigan, Sally Marble. She was born Sep 6 1796 in Massachusetts and died at the age of 41 on Aug 10 1838 at Pavilion, Kalamazoo, Michigan.

James Noyes was the son of James Noyes and Rebecca Russell. Sally Marble was the daughter of Ephraim Marble and Anna Dunham.

James was in the War of 1812 and the Black Hawk Indian War. In both he was a musician and played the fife and flute. He was a great student of history…Captain James NOYES of Gourdneck Prairie and Ephraim HARRISON of Prairie Ronde were captains of the Prairie troops.
SOURCE: Michigan Pioneer and Historical Collections Vol XXX

In 1825 there were nine small houses in Ann Arbor, MI, located and occupied as near as can be ascertained as follows: Elisha W. RUMSEY occupied the “Wasterman Coffe House” and John ALLEN the block house. A long house with a frame addition stood on the northeast corner of Main and Ann Streets. Two small houses stood on opposite sides of Main Street near where Guffy’s Store now stands and were occupied by the two brothers, James and George W. NOYES.
SOURCE: Pioneer Society of Michigan, Vol I, page 334 (1874-76)

James NOYES came in October of 1830 from Ann Arbor, and settled NE/2, NW/4. Sect 23, where he built a log house and made improvements. He sold this land in 1831 and bought new lands in the township of Brady, on which he erected a sawmill, which, with his farm, he put into the Alphadelphia Society. On the disbanding of the society in 1848, he retained his property. He died at his home in Brady many years since. (p.353).
SOURCE: History of Kalamazoo County, MI, Its Prominent Men and Pioneers, 1880

The Alphadelphia Assn believed in pastoral communion. Coming down through the ages into our own time, we find Charles Fourier of France teaching this principle in America through Dr. H.F. Schetterly, a German, who lived in Comstock. A group of sturdy pioneers took up Alphadelphia society. Among them was James NOYES, born 1793. To live together in harmony was the object; to live and work and enjoy the benefits of each other’s society and the fruits of their own labor like a happy, united family. After four year’s trial, it was a total failure. There were 300 members all together. A large number put their farms into the Association. Others put in various kinds of property. James NOYES put in his saw mill which was valuable in furnishing lumber to the Society. From their first meeting on the domain March 21, 1844, until the last entry on the journal on April 30, 1848, the presidents were Anson GELMUTTER, B. WRIGHT, Harry KEITH, Lymann TUBBS and James NOYES.
SOURCE: The Alphadelphia Association–Its History in Comstock, Kalamazoo Co., Michigan

James NOYES was an agent for the Indians when he lived at Pavilion, MI. The three children who survived (Elizabeth, James and Sarah Melissa) always told of the good times they had playing with the Indian boys and girls and of how many playmates they had during the time that the Alphadelphia Society existed and all the people lived in one community.

James NOYES conducted a part of the underground railroad which helped escaping slaves get to Canada and freedom. Slaves were kept in his barn by day and then taken on by night to the next station. His second wife was a southern sympathizer, so this caused a great deal of friction. Son James Allen left home.

SOURCE: Nancy Benton

Children of James and Sally were:

  1. Ezra b. 7 July 1817, died, age 23, 17 June 1841, at Pavilion, MI.
  2. Elizabeth, b. 22 March 1819, married LOVETT. She died 11 Sept. 1850 at the age of 31. She and LOVETT are given in the family record as having for children John William and James Frank. The 1850 KALAMAZOO SCHOOLCRAFT TOWNSHIP MICHIGAN CENSUS shows at household 1332/1346 an Elizabeth LOVETT, 31, $1000, b. NY, with John W. 11 and James F. 9, both born in MI. Living also in the household is Malissa NOYES, 14, b. MI. Malissa is her sister. The census was taken August 14 or 19th so Elizabeth died shortly thereafter. (Her husband is not in the household which causes me to wonder if he was already dead or if they were separated. If he was dead, one wonders what happened to the children.) A few households up live Freeman and Susan WATERS, 22 and 23, both born NY. Freeman is perhaps a relative of Susan WATERS who was James NOYES’ 2nd wife.
  3. James Jr. was born 1 July 1821 and died April 1823 at Pavilion, Kalamazoo Co. MI, age 2, of malaria fever.
  4. B. J. was born 4 Oct. 1823 and died 6 May 1843 at the age of 19. He died the same year as his 14 year old sister Maryette.
  5. James Allen, b. 22 Dec. 1826, Ann Arbor, Michigan, married Caroline ATWELL.
  6. Maryette, b. 17 July 1828, died 13 Feb 1843 at Pavilion, MI, at age 14. She died in the same year as B. J., her 19 year old brother.
  7. Dan was born 4 Nov. 1831 at Kalamazoo Co. MI and died 20 Sept. 1835, Kalamazoo, MI, age 3, of malaria fever.
  8. Delia was born 15 Nov. 1833 at Kalamazoo Co. MI and died 1837, Kalmazoo Co. MI, at age 4, of malaria fever.
  9. Sarah Melissa NOYES was born 24 April 1836 at Kalamazoo Co. MI. She married John T. SLATER, 14 June 1857 in Wisconsin. SLATER was an Indian agent in Wisconsin. They moved to Butler MO in 1866. When on a trip to Florida to buy “goods”, he took yellow fever and died while on the trip. Sarah married (2) J. D. ANDERSON on 4 Oct. 1871. She died 7 May 1936 at Berryville, AR. at the age of 100. She appears in the 1850 Kalamazoo Co. census living with her sister Elizabeth LOVETT (see above). Pansy Noyes Bryant, her great-niece, wrote of Sarah, “Sarah Melissa was very religious and bought her home for later years across the road from the church she loved in Berryville, where she was a constant attendant, even being carried to services after she was blind and deaf and could not enjoy the services. I visited in her home in 1925 and a retired minister and his wife were caring for her. They talked with her in Morse code by tapping on her hand. Her mind was clear until the end.”

After Sally’s death in 1838, James married in 1839, Susan WATERS, b. 1815 in NY. Their children were:

  1. George W. b. 8 May 1840, died 3 May 1870 at 30. The Noyes Descendants, Vol. I says 3 Mar 1870. Age. 30 y 9 m 25 d. Died of consumption.
  2. Daniel T., b. 11 Sept. 1843. Appears to have died in infancy as is not in the 1850 census.
  3. Franklin b. 7 July 1845, died 29 July 1891. He married first Margaret A. ALDRICH then Clara E. HUBBARD.
  4. Mary R., b. 7 March 1847. Appears to have died in infancy as is not in the 1850 census.
  5. James (not given in family record) is seen in the 1850 census, age 2.
  6. John W., b. 31 Jan. 1851, is given as 11 years old in the 1860 census. He is perhaps the James given above in the 1850 census.
  7. Arilla W. (not given in family record) appears in the 1860 census as 9 so b. 1851 or so. She could not be a duplicate of Minerva who is given as dying in 1854.
  8. Minerva, b. 19 June 1851, died 4 Sept. 1854 at age 2.
  9. Lunetta, b. 20 April 1854, died 25 March 1878 at age 23.
  10. Jean N. (not given in the family record) appears in the 1860 census as age 6 so born about 1854.

Census data for 1820 is yet to be found on James. By 1825 we find him on a Michigan tax list.

1825 NOYES JAMES JR. Wayne&wshtnwco MI 799 Tax List 1825 Tax List MI Early Census Index MIS2a927045
1825 NOYES JAMES JR. Wayne-washtenaw MI Huron Tax List MI Early Census Index MIS2a927046

He purchased land in Washtenaw County, Michigan in Feb. 1826.

In 1830 he is at Ann Arbor, Washtenaw, Michigan.

An unidentified 20 to 30 year old male is in the household.

pg. 138
Harvey CHUBB
Phillip McKUNAN?
Michael STUBBS
Elam SLOE?
William ALLEN
David HUEA?
Joseph LORCE
Benjamin SUTTON
James NOYES 1 – 1 – 1 1 | 1 1 1 – – 1
NOTE: 1 male under 5, 1 10 to 15, 1 male 20 to 30, 1 male 30 to 40, 1 female under 5, 1 female 5 to 10, 1 female 10 to 15, 1 female 30 to 40.
1 male under 5 would be James Allen. Male 10 to 15 would be Ezra. James is the 30 to 40 male. I don’t know who the 20 to 30 male is. 1 female under 5 would be Maryette. Female 5 to 10 would be B. J. Female 10 to 15 would be Elizabeth. And then Sally Marble.

James father died in 1835.

He is in the 1837 Kalamazoo census.

1837 NOYES JAMES Kalamazoo County MI 002 Pavilion Township MI 1837 Kalamazoo County Census Index MI17593

Sally Marble died in 1838.

Possible land deeds for James in 1839, May 1.

NOYES JAMES 9 4 S 9 W 19 80.0000 01 10265 1839/05/01
NOYES JAMES 9 4 S 9 W 19 80.0000 01 10266 1839/05/01

In 1839 James married his second wife, Susan Waters.

The 1840 census.

1840 Pavilion, Kalamazoo, Michigan
pg. 253 (ancestry.com 1)
Martin McCAIN
James NOYES 1 – 1 1 2 – 1 | 1 – 1 1 1
NOTE: 1 male under 5, 1 male 10 to 15, 1 male 15 to 20, 2 males 20 to 30 1 male 40 to 50, 1 female under 5, 1 female 10 to 15, 1 female 15 to 20, 1 female 20 to 30

1 male under 5 would be George W. (son of Susan Waters and James Noyes), 1 male 10 to 15 would be James Allen. 1 male 15 to 20 would be? 1 of the 2 20 to 30 males would be Ezra, James is the 40 to 50 year old male. 1 female under 5 would be Sarah Malissa, 1 female 10 to 15 would be Maryette. 1 female 15 to 20 would be B. J. 1 female 20 to 30 would not be Elizabeth if she was married before 1839. Though Susan’s birthdate is given as 1815, this female would be her.

James NOYES is observed living near Martin MCCAIN. The wife and son of his son Frank L., by Susan WATERS, were buried in the MCCAIN cemetery.

There then followed a terrible succession of deaths. The first namesake of James had already died in 1823 at the age of 2 of malaria. Dan had died at 3, in 1835, of malaria. Delia had already died in 1837, at the age of 4, of malaria. Now, in 1841, Ezra died at the age of 23. In 1843, Maryette died at 14, then B. J. also died that year, at 19, of malaria. Daniel T. died in infancy in about 1843.

The first meeting of the Alphadelphia Association, which would be a Fourier-based socialist experiment in community, was March 21 1844.

During the McCarthy years, the Noyes family destroyed documents from the Alphadelphia Association and other materials concerning involvement of family in other utopian communities. Barbara Triphahn, a descendant of Charles Luke KEITH (also a president of the Alphadelphia Association) responded to a posting of mine on the internet requesting contact with anyone who might have information on the Association. She supplied a number of newspaper articles from the early 1900s and the Alphadelphia Society Constitution, links to which are in the Alphadelphia Association section.

Thanks also to Nancy BENTON, for a copy of the paper the “Alphadelphia Association” prepared by Catherine Livingston in 1958, whose research was based on documents loaned to her through Mrs. F. J. Buckley of Kalamazoo who had purchased records from Ethan Keith and Hannah Keith Towne. The paper has been transcribed and is again linked to in the Alphadelphia Association section.

James Noyes was, it appears, the last president of the Alphadelphia Association, following Anson Delamatter, Benjamin Wright, Harvey Keith, and Lyman Tubbs. On April 30 1848 the last journal entry for the association was made though the association itself continued for several more years.

The 1850 census shows James’ family in Pavilion, Kalamazoo, Michigan.

In the time since James’ marriage to Susan in 1839, and the 1840 census, 3 of the children born to James and Sally MARBLE have died, and James Allen and Sarah have abandoned the household, James to leave the area, and Sarah living with her sister Elizabeth.

They are living next to Peter WESTBROOK, widowed husband of Fanny, sister of Sally Marble NOYES (now deceased). Fanny had died in 1849.


Pg. 218
25 ?/1573 Peter WESTBROOK 58 $700 MA
26 Ethan 18 b. OH
27 William 10 b. OH
28 ?/1574 Ephraim 30 $300 b. OH
29 Jane 17 b. OH
30 Nancy MOON 19 b. OH

pg. 220, Roll M432_353, Image 216
5-9 1571/1575? A. CALKINS and family
10 1572/1576 James NOYES 58 m farmer $1200 b. NY
11 Susan 35 f b. NY
12 George W. 7 m b. MI attended school
13 Franklin 5 m b. MI
14 James 2 m b. MI

15 1573/1577 Elsy HILL
16-23 1574/1578 A. H. HOUGHTON and family
24-28 1575/15? Lyman S. EARL and family
29-35 1576/? Chancey DEAN and family
36-38 1577/? George HAMILTON and family
39-42 1578/? George CULVER and family

More deaths followed. Mary R. died about 1850, before the age of 3. Daughter Elizabeth died in 1850 at the age of 31.

Though the last journal entry of the Alphadelphia Association was in 1848, the had a meeting August 1 1857 for the purpose of disposing of the deeds of members in attendance. Then on August 11 there was a meeting for the purpose of disposing of the Association’s books as the secretary was moving to Kansas. Noyes did not attend this meeting. Present were C. L. Keith, H. A. Taylor, C. R. Cridland and D. Taylor, witnessing the remark, “And thus ended the Alphadelphia Association.”

The 1860 census at Pavilion, Kalamazoo, Michigan shows the Noyes family.

David McCANE and Marian and family
Del CHIPMAN and family
Lawrence WALLACE and family
James NOYES 66 farmer $2200? $463 b. MA
Susan W. 48 b. NY
Geo. W. 20 farmer $150 (personal) b. MI
Frank 15
Jno W. 11
Arilla W. 9
Jean N. 6

Andrew MADISON 33 laborer

The grave site of James Noyes in Pavilion is yet to be located.

I’ve no record of when and where Susan Waters died, or where she is buried.

James Allen Noyes and granddaughter Pansy

Courtesy of Nancy Benton

A quick tint

James Allen Noyes strolls with granddaughter Pansy Noyes, eldest child and daughter of Ray Noyes and Bettie Brewer. I’m guessing the photo is from about 1900 when Pansy would have been 5 years of age. James Allen would have been about 74.

This photo would have been taken in Liberal, Barton County, Missouri.

Notes on Caroline Atwell Noyes’ Family by Pansy Noyes Bryant

Courtesy of Nancy Benton.

Caroline Atwell (born Oct. 2, 1835) told her oldest daughter Emma Viola Noyes Harmon many interesting things of her life in Vermont. Her mother was Rachel Scagel and was apparently brought up above ordinary rank. An old copy of Goldsmith’s “Vicar of Wakefield” is still in Mrs. Harmon’s possession and it belonged to Rachel Scagel in the days when books were scarce. (Note: This book “Vicar of Wakefield” is in the possession of Pansy Noyes Bryant, great granddaughter of Rachel Scagel, at the present time, 1960). Caroline Atwell always wore wool clothing in her younger days–petticoats, aprons, dresses, underwear, and even stockings were spun at home. She always believed wool was conducive to health. Note: (by granddaughter Pansy Noyes Bryant) So strong was her opinion about wool that my father insisted his first baby’s dress and petticoats were pure wool and I have in my possession a wool blanket in which all my grandmother’s children, my father’s children and my first child was wrapped in birth.

She was a believer in many of the health fads of the day. Always took a daily cold bath even tho she had to break the ice to do so. She took long walks and encouraged her children to do so. Caroline was raised in the days of hoop skirts, corsets, etc., but she was a believer in sensible clothing for women and refused to wear corsets all her life. Vermonters were famous for their apple butter and her mother was one of the best at this art. Much of it was sold in Boston–days being consumed in this journey of taking produce to market and then bringing back goods for the family.

Family of Hiram Atwell and Rachel Sacgel Atwell taken from family bible now in possession of Ray Noyrs (1918) a grandson.

Hiram Atwell–born Mar. 2, 1801 Johnson Vt.–died Dec. 2, 1849 Waterbury, Center, Vt. buried in cemetery there.
Rachel Scagel–born April 15, 1802 Waterbury Vt.–died April 17, 1843 Waterbury Center Vt. buried in cemetery there.

Married Waterbury Vt. Oct. 7, 1830

Their children

1 Hiram Scagel Atwell–born May 5, 1832
2 Sarah Ann Lydia Atwell–born Apr. 18, 1834
3 Caroline Atwell–born Oct 2, 1835
4 Francis Awell–born Apr. 11, 1843

Marriages of these children
1 Sarah Ann Lydia to N. W. Gilbert in Waterbury Mar. 7, 1852
2 Caroline Atwell to James A. Noyes in Bradyvillage, Kalamazoo Co. Mich. June 28, 1859

Deaths in this family
1 Hiram, son, died July 23, 1843
2 Rachel, wife, died in childbirth, April 17, 1843
3 Francis, son, died Apr. 20, 1843
4 Hiram, father, died Dec. 2, 1849
5 Sarah Ann Lydia Gilbert, daughter, died in Boston, Mass. Jan 3, 1844 [should be 1877] . Her body was buried in Northfield Vt.
6 Caroline Atwell Noyes died Apr. 18, 1894 near Liberal, Mo. Buried in City Cemetery there.

Rachel Scagel Atwell died in childbirth, the baby Francis dying a few days later. An older child Hiram took some medicine intended for his mother and this caused his death later.

Hiram Atwell after his wife died in 1843 kept the home together for his young daughters. When the gold rush started for California in 1849, he decided to go. He sold off his stock all except some younger animals that he was going to take to his father’s home in Johnson Vt. about fifteen miles away. It was a warm sunny morning when he started to drive those calves down the road to his fathers. Along in the forenoon it became very cold so Hiram stopped at a house and procured an overcoat to keep him warm. The storm grew worse and the next morning when he did not appear at his father’s house they started in search of him. He was found frozen to death with the calves all huddled around him.

Sarah Atwell Gilbert married a dentist and they were living in Boston when she died. They were quite wealthy but never had any children. Note: I have several pictures of great aunt Sarah Gilbert–also the last letter she wrote to her sister Caroline (my grandmother) in my possession. (Pansy Noyes Bryant 1953)

Caroline Atwell after her father’s death was sent to an aunt in New Berlin, Ohio. Here she met James Allen Noyes, whom she married in 1859. She always told her children she was a cousin of President Franklin Pierce.

Baldwin v. Walser–Trouble at the Bank

There was trouble in Liberal. George W. Baldwin brought charges of libel against Walser for Walser distributing this in January of 1889:

” ‘ To all whom this may concern :

‘”Notice is hereby given that the copartnership heretofore existing by and between G. W. Baldwin, G. H. Walser, J. G. Pitgen, J. A. Noyes, John Betz, F. L. Yale, Joseph York, J. S. Van Law, P. G. Boulware, Geo. Boulware and R. L. Baldwin, doing business under the firm name and style of the Bank of Liberal, and engaged in the business of private bankers in the town of Liberal, Missouri (meaning the bank herein before mentioned), is hereby dissolved, so far as the undersigned is concerned; and on, and after, this day said parties (meaning the plaintiffs), each of them, are not authorized or permitted to do any business, contract any liabilities, negotiate any loans, or receive deposits of any kind, directly or indirectly, or further prosecute the business of bankers, or further use the name of said firm of the Bank of Liberal in the business aforesaid.

“‘G. H. Walser.’

One wonders what brought that mess on?

* * * * * *



Courts Of Appeals,



FROM APRIL 29, 1890, TO OCTOBER 28, 1890,


-DAVID GOLDSMITH, of the St. Louis Bar,


BEN ELI GUTHRIE, of the Macon City Bar,


Baldwin v. Walser.

We feel scarcely justified in so doing. We have in the record now before us nothing to advise us of just what the issues are in the main case. We discover a petition; but as to whether or not the case shall be tried thereon, whether or not the same may be amended, or whether a demurrer is or may be interposed, or an answer filed, and the nature thereof, or whether in fact there shall be any defense at all, we have no knowledge or means of knowing. Hence we should, in following the course suggested by the learned counsel, be justly charged with declaring the law on a mere moot case—trying nothing but mere supposable legal issues, which we conceive improper

The writ of error herein is dismissed. All concur.

G. W. Baldwin et al., Appellant, v. G. H. Walser, i« 243 Respondent.

Kansas City Court of Appeals, May 12, 1890.

Libel: Notice Of Dissolution Op Partnership Not Actionable : Special Character. The giving of notice by one not a member of a banking firm, that he had withdrawn from it and that it was no longer authorized to do business as far as he was concerned, was of itself harmless. To render language concerning one in a special character or relation actionable, it must touch him in that special character or relation, otherwise it must be adjudged by the rules which apply to language concerning an individual as such. It is not sufficient that such language disparage him or his reputation generally, it must be such as, if true, disqualifies or renders him less fit to properly fulfill the duties incident to the special character ; such as, imputing fraud, want of integrity, or misconduct in the particular line, and occasioning pecuniary loss as a necessary or natural proximate consequence of its publication in writing; and even special damages will not make the language actionable if the words are not defamatory*

Baldwin v. Walser.

2. : : Extraneous Matter. The allegations in the petition that, in consequence of the publication of said notice of dissolution of the partnership, a general loss of custom had resulted to plaintiffs, and many people were prevented from transacting business with them, and their commercial and financial standing were reduced, do not render the publication libelous.

8. Partnership: Action At Law Against Partners. Several partners cannot maintain an action at law for ‘damages against a copartner.

4. : Dissolution : Damages. A partner has a right to withdraw from the firm and make his withdrawal effectual by giving notice thereof, and, though serious loss to the firm may be the natural and probable result of such withdrawal, no damages could ordinarily be recovered therefor,

Appeal from the Barton Circuit Court.—Hox* D. P. Stratton, Judge.


Buler & Timmonds, for appellant.

(1) The demurrer admits the falsehood in the publication, and the malice in the publisher. Townsend on Libel, note to p. 350; BoogJier v. Knapp, 76 Mo. 467. The publications being admitted to be false, the malice of the publisher also being admitted, it cannot be, on demurrer, claimed as a privileged publication; for, if false and malicious, it cannot be privileged. Townsend on Libel, sec. 245. “Privileged publication” is a matter of defense only to be pleaded and proven as any other defense. Townsend, sec. 208, et seq., and sec.

245 ; 3 Sutherland on Damages, 653. (2) The publication is libelous per se. .Hermann t>. Bradstreet Co.,’19 Mo. App. 227; Townsend, sees. 146, 147, 150, 181, 182, 191, note on p. 279, notes on pp. 279, 298, 299. (3) If the publication should be held not to be libelous per se, it is, nevertheless, libelous by reason of the special injuries and damages alleged in petition. A general loss of customers is alleged.- Many people have been

Baldwin v. Walser.

prevented from transacting business with plaintiffs. The bank is greatly reduced in its commercial and financial standing. Loss of customers is so manifestly special damage that it is unnecessary to state the cases in detail. 3 Sutherland on Damages, p. 666, and cases cited, p. 667, and cases cited. Weiss v. Whitlemore, 28 Mich. 373. If the petition is not sufficiently specific as to injuries and damages, defendant’s remedy would have been by motion to make more specific, definite and certain, and not by demurrer.

R. J. Tucker and G. H. Walser, for respondent.

(1) The demurrer only admits facts well pleaded, and does not admit the unwarranted applications in the innuendo, and statement outside of the matter complained of, not legitimately deduced from the wording of the publication. Dannan v. Coleman, 8 Mo. App. 695; Kleekamp i). Meyer, 5 Mo. App. 444; Boogher V. Knapp, 76 Mo. 457; State ex rel. v. Evert, 52 Mo. 95. (2) The publication complained of is not actionable per se. It raises no imputation of malice in the publication. It is simply a notice of a dissolution of a copartnership, ” so far as the publisher was concerned.” To make it actionable per se, its legitimate import must blacken the reputation of the appellants, or expose them to hatred, contempt or ridicule; or, if true, disqualify them, or unfit them, for business as bankers, for moral turpitude, want of skill, honesty or standing, as men. Legg ». Dunlevy, 80 Mo. 558; Townsend on Libel and Slander, sec. 190; Fitzgerald v. Itedfleld, 51 Barb. 484 ; Odgers on Libel and Slander, 65 ; Nelson v. Margrave, 10 Mo. 648 ; Hermann v. Bradstreet Co., 19 Mo. App. 227 ; Price v. WJtitely, 50 Mo. 439 ; Legg v. Dunlevy, 10 Mo. App. 461; Brooker v. Coffin, 5 Johns. 191; Martin v. Sulwell, 13 Johns. 275 ; Rammel v. Otis, 60 Mo. 35 ; Fry v. Bennet, 15 Sand. 54; More n. Bennett, 33 Howard, 177; Bennett v. Williamson, 4 Sand.
Baldwin v. Walser.

60; More v. Bennett, 48 Barb. 229. (3) Where the publication is not actionable per se, and where the ordinary meaning of the words does not convey the meaning assigned to them, the petition must contain a statement of extrinsic facts necessary to make a cause of action. Curry v. Collins, 37 Mo. 324; Christal «. Craig, 80 Mo. 357 ; Wood v. Hilftsh, 23 Mo. App. 389 ; Salvatillo v. Ohio, 9 Mo. App. 155; Chitty’s Pleadings [10 Am. Ed.] 400; Legg v. Dunleoy, 80 Mo. 558; McMannis t. Jackson, 28 Mo. 68; Sunday t>. Heart, 46 Mo. 460; Masley v. Mass, 6 Gratt, 638; Stewart -o. Wilson, 23 Minn. 449 ; Tappen v. Wilson, 7 Ohio, 193; Estee’s Pleading, sec. 3635; Maynard v. Ins. Co., 47 Cal. 210; Wilson v. Fitch, 41 Cal. 378. (4) The innuendo cannot enlarge or change the ordinary meaning of the language used. Qreeley v. Cooper, 1 Denio, 347; Tappen v. Wilson, 7 Ohio, 194. (6) The plaintiffs, suing in the special character of private bankers, must show that it referred to them in the capacity in which they sue. Townsend on Libel and Slander, 290. (6) The petition, as a whole, shows that appellants and respondent were partners, and that the publication complained of related to them in their partnership capacity. One partner cannot sue another at law. Kelley’s Treatise, 677, 678, 679 ; Bank v. Bemis, 65 Mo. 624. (7) A partner may dissolve the firm at pleasure. 3 Kent, Com. [12 Ed.] 53. (8) If a retiring partner wishes to protect himself from the mismanagement or liabilities of the old firm which he retires from, the law makes it his duty to give notice to the public of his withdrawal. Dowzelot v. Rawlings, 58 Mo. 75 ; 3 Kent, Com. [12 Ed.] 63. (9) The pleader must rely upon some specific cause of action ; they cannot rely upon the publication as being actionable per se, and, if they fail in that, sustain themselves by reason of the averment of “special injuries and damages.” Robinson a. Rice, 20 Mo. 235. (10) Averment of general loss of business will only lie when the words are actionable per

Baldwin v. Walser,

se. Where the publication is not actionable per se, and the plaintiff suffers injury by the loss of customers, the names of the customers must be set out. Ins. Co. v. Mcclesine, 6 Abbott (N. S.) 9. (11) The petition avers that the defendant, contriving and falsely and fraudulently intending to injure the ” Bank of Liberal,” and these “plaintiffs in their good credit and reputation, and also in their said business as private bankers.” Here are three different causes of action set up,—one in favor of the Bank of Liberal, one in favor of the individual members of the firm, and in such a cause of action they cannot sue jointly. Dvffy v. Gray, 62 Mo. 628. And one for injuries to their business, which cannot be joined with injury to the members. Duffy ». Gray, 52 Mo. 628; Collyer on Partnerships, sec. 680; Story on Partnership, sees. 256, 257; Townsend on Libel and Slander, 381; Selwin, Nisi Prius, p. 1260; Town, on Libel and Slander, 201. The petition shows upon its face that the publication is in the nature of a legal proceeding to dissolve a copartnership, and, therefore, privileged. Gilbert v. People, 1 Denio, 41.

Smith, P. J.—This suit was instituted in the circuit court of Barton county to recover damages for an alleged libel. The defendant filed a demurrer to the petition on the ground that it did not state facts sufficient to constitute a cause of action, which was by the court sustained. The plaintiffs declining to further plead, judgment was rendered in favor of the demurrant. The plaintiffs bring the case here by appeal.

The petition was as follows: “The above-named plaintiffs complain and allege that, on the day of January, 1889, long prior thereto, and every since that date, they were engaged in carrying on a banking business, as private bankers, under the style and name of ‘Bank of Liberal,’ at the town of Liberal, in Barton county, Missouri. That at, and prior to, the date aforesaid, plaintiffs, as such private bankers, under the name

Baldwin v. Walser.

of the Bank of Liberal, had built up, and maintained, a good, profitable and paying banking business at said town of Liberal; had merited and won the confidence and esteem of men of large means, who had become, and were, regular customers and depositors of said bank, and also the confidence and esteem of numerous banking institutions throughout the state of Missouri and many other states; and were largely engaged in negotiating loans, receiving deposits and transacting a general banking business. That said plaintiffs, as such private bankers, at the date aforesaid, long prior thereto and ever since then, were, and are, duly and lawfully authorized to transact a general banking business, to contract liabilities, negotiate loans and receive deposits in the name of the Bank of Liberal. That the defendant, well knowing the premises, but contriving and falsely and fraudulently intending to injure said Bank of Liberal and these plaintiffs in their good credit and reputation, and also in their said business as private bankers, and to cause it to be suspected and believed that said Bank of Liberal had been dissolved and plaintiffs were wrongfully and unlawfully engaged in the banking business, and had no right or authority to longer engage in the banking business, at said tfvii of Liberal, nor any right or authority to contract liabilities, negotiate loans, receive deposits, nor prosecute the business of bankers, nor use the name of the Bank of Liberal; and, also, contriving and falsely and fraudulently intending to injure and destroy the custom and business which plaintiffs had built up as aforesaid ; and to prevent persons from depositing their means with said bank, and from negotiating loans at said bank; and to injure said bank in its good credit and reputation with its correspondent banks in this and other states, and to vex, harass, oppress and injure the plaintiffs, did, on the day of January, 1889, at the county and state aforesaid, wrongfully and maliciously and injuriously compose and publish, and caused to be

Baldwin v. Walser.

published, of, and concerning, plaintiffs and their said bank a certain, false, scandalous, malicious and defamatory libel in the way of, and in respect to, their said business as bankers; which said false, scandalous and defamatory libel is, and was, of the tenor following, that is to say :

” ‘ To all whom this may concern :

‘”Notice is hereby given that the copartnership heretofore existing by and between G.W. Baldwin, G. H. Walser, J. G. Pitgen, J. A. Noyes, John Betz, F. L. Yale, Joseph York, J. S. Van Law, P. G. Boulware, Geo. Boulware and R. L. Baldwin, doing business under the firm name and style of the Bank of Liberal, and engaged in the business of private bankers in the town of Liberal, Missouri (meaning the bank hereinbefore mentioned), is hereby dissolved, so far as the undersigned is concerned; and on, and after, this day said parties (meaning the plaintiffs), each of them, are not authorized or permitted to do any business, contract any liabilities, negotiate any loans, or receive deposits of any kind, directly or indirectly, or further prosecute the business of bankers, or further use the name of said • firm of the Bank of Liberal in the business aforesaid.

“‘G. H. Walser.’

” That said defendant signed said false, scandalous, malicious and defamatory libel, and wrongfully, maliciously and injuriously procured the same to be published in the Messenger, a newspaper regularly published in said town of Liberal, and largely circulated in said town, county and state; and also falsely, wrongfully and maliciously and injuriously sent, and procured to be sent, to many of plaintiffs’ depositors in said bank and to plaintiffs’ banking correspondents in other cities and states, copies of said false, scandalous, malicious and defamatory libel.

” That by means of the premises the plaintiffs and the said Bank of Liberal have greatly been injured in

Baldwin v. Walser.

their credit and reputation aforesaid, and have and are suspected to have been guilty of the misconduct so as aforesaid mentioned to have been charged upon and imputed to them, and to have conducted themselves dishonorably, injudiciously, improperly and unlawfully in undertaking to transact a banking business at the town of Liberal as aforesaid ; and many of their said customers, depositors and bank correspondents, as well as the people generally, have been caused to suspect and believe that plaintiffs are, and have been, wrongfully and unlawfully engaged in the business of banking, as private bankers, and have no right or authority to do any business, contract any liabilities, negotiate any loans, or receive deposits of any kind, directly or indirectly, or to prosecute the business of bankers, or to use the name of the said firm of the Bank of Liberal in the business aforesaid. And many of plaintiffs’ depositors, by reason thereof, have withdrawn from said bank their deposits ; many other people have been thereby prevented from transacting any banking business with plaintiffs; many of their banking correspondents have lost confidence in said Bank of Liberal; and said Bank of Liberal has been greatly reduced in its commercial and financial standing ; and plaintiffs have been greatly vexed, harassed, oppressed and injured, and lost and been deprived of divers great gains and profits, which, but for said libel, would have arisen and accrued to them in their said business as private bankers ; and have been and are greatly injured and damaged, in the sum of ten thousand dollars ; for which sum and for costs plaintiffs pray judgment.”

The demurrer controverts the conclusions of the pleading, but, not denying the facts which are therein well pleaded, it by necessary implication admits their truth. Bliss on Code Plead., sec. 418. The defendant was not a member of said banking firm as we must infer from the petition was the fact. Then the giving of notice that he had withdrawn from it and that it was no longer authorized to do any business as far as he was concerned was of itself harmless, unless there is something else in it of a libelous character. The rule is that in order to render language concerning one in a special character or relation actionable “it must touch him” in that special character or relation ; for, unless it does, it must be judged in regard to its actionable quality by the rules which apply to language concerning an individual as such. It is not sufficient that the language disparages him generally, or that his general reputation is thereby affected, it must be such as, if true, would disqualify him or render him less fit properly to fulfill the duties incident to the special character assumed. Townsend on Libel and Slander, sec. 190. And in the authority just cited it is further stated in section 191, in those trades or professions in which ordinarily credit is essential to their successful prosecution, language is actionable per se which imputes to one in any such trade or profession a want of credit or responsibility or insolvency past, present or future. Language concerning one in his trade or profession to be actionable per se must impute to him fraud, want of integrity or misconduct in the line of his business or profession whereby he gains his bread. Every publication of language concerning a man or his affairs, which, as a necessary or natural proximate consequence, occasions pecuniary loss, is prima facie a libel if the publication be by writing. The statute of this state (section 1591, Revised Statutes) declares : “A libel is the malicious defamation of a person made public by any printing, writing, sign, picture, representation or effigy tending to provoke him to wrath or expose him to public hatred, contempt or ridicule, or to deprive him of the benefits of public confidence and social intercourse, or any malicious defamation made public as aforesaid, designed to blacken or vilify the memory of one who is dead and tending to scandalize or provoke his surviving relations and friends.” Similar definitions to that given in the

Baldwin v. Walser.

statute just referred are to be found among the cases which have been adjudged in the appellate courts of this state. Nelson v. Margrave, 10 Mo. 648; Price v. Whitely, 60 Mo. 439; Legg v. Dunleoy, 80 Mo. 663; Hermann v. Bradstreet Co., 19 Mo. App. 227. In some of these cases the definition there given of libel is broader and more comprehensive than that given in the statute ? As already intimated we think the publication contains no statement that is libelous per se. The words of the publication, though they relate to the plaintiffs in their business capacity, do not on their face bear any injurious meaning. Interpreting the words of the publication as therein collocated according to their usual and ordinary meaning, and it is quite clear that they do not fall within the definition of libel as declared in the statute and adjudicated cases of this state.

If the publication is a libel on the plaintiffs in their business, it must be so on account of some extrinsic fact alleged in the petition. The universal rule is that, if the words are not libelous per se, the petition must by preliminary averments show extrinsic facts from which the libel results. Pollard v. Lyon, 91 U. S. 225; Legg v. Dunlevy, supra; McManus v. Jackson, 28 Mo. 68; Salvatelli v. Ohio, 9 Mo. App. 155. The nature of the present action is that of special damages actually sustained in consequence of words written and published by defendant, and, unless such damage is the natural and probable consequences qf those words and of that publication, the defendant cannot be held liable. And the special damage will not help plaintiffs if the words are not defamatory. Legg v. Dunlevy, 10 Mo. App. 461; Young v. McCrea, 3 Best & S. 264.

The plaintiffs contend that the averment in the petition of these extrinsic facts, viz.: First. “General loss of customers. Second. Many people were prevented from transacting business with the bank, and third, their reduced commercial and financial standing,”

Baldwin v. Walser.

renders the publication libelous. Were these injuries to plaintiffs in their special quality as bankers the natural and probable consequences of the words of the publication? The demurrer admits that the publication was untrue. Now, if it was untrue that the defendant was a member of said banking firm, as stated in the publication, then the declaring of the dissolution of the firm was a vain act—was nothing. And it must inevitably further follow that if the defendant was not a member of the plaintiffs’ firm that it was no more authorized after than before said publication to transact any business to bind him. It is quite difficult to perceive how the extrinsic facts alleged in the petition in respect to said publication show that the damages therein specially stated could naturally and probably result from the publication. It is incomprehensible how a banking firm could lose depositors or the confidence of its correspondent banks or the banking business of the public generally because some reputable or disreputable person had falsely published a notice that his partnership relations with it have terminated and that it was no longer authorized to transact business as far as he is concerned, or how such injuries would naturally and probably result from such publication.

On the other hand if, as is conceded, it was untrue that defendant had dissolved his partnership relations with plaintiffs, and that it was untrue that they, in their partnership capacity, were no longer authorized to transact a banking business in the name of said firm so as to bind defendant, then this action is by several partners against a single one for damages in an action at law which cannot be maintained. Bank v. Beans, 65 Mo. 624; Scott v. Caruth, 50 Mo. 120 ; Fuert v. Brown, 23 Mo. App. 332. Damages would not be recoverable in such case even in a proceeding in equity. Gaty v. Tyler, 33 Mo. App. 494; Fletcher v. Heed, 121 Mass. 312. If the publication related to the firm and the defendant was a member of it, then we have the singular spectacle of ten members of a partnership suing the eleventh member for damages resulting from the wrongful conduct of the latter in respect to the partnership. This is the reductio ad absurdum of the argument on this line. The withdrawal of a partner from any business firm might very naturally and probably subject it to serious loss and yet no damages could ordinarily be recovered therefor, and if none could be recovered for the act it must needs follow that none could be recovered for making it effectual by giving notice of it to the world. It would be his duty to give the notice in such case. Dowzelot v. jRawlings, 58 Mo. 75; Pope & West v. Risley, 23 Mo. 185.

We are unable to discover any charge in the publication or in the extrinsic facts alleged in respect thereto, which constitutes a cause of action. The judgment of the circuit court will be affirmed.

Noyes Family Constitution

Being Free-thinkers who had been associated with socialist experiments and who had moved to Liberal, Missouri, which was expressly for liberals, it’s not surprising that the Noyes family would form their own family constitution.

The document displays the year as being 283.

The Dictionary of Missouri Biography notes that Liberal was utilizing a different dating system, one that was based on 1600 A. D., the year Giordano Bruno was burned at the stake by the Roman Catholic Church for his astronomical and pantheistic beliefs, becoming known subsequently as a martyr for science. “Thus, the year 1883, using their system, was called E of M 283 or Era of Man 283. Such a dating system had been recommended by the National Liberal League.”

Nancy Benton sent me the document. Below is a transcription and images.

* * * * *


Liberal, Mo. February 10th 283.

We the undersigned agreed to join together in a Society which shall be based upon and regulated by the following


1. The Name of the Society shall be Home-Circle.

2. Every member shall enjoy all the rights and priviledges which all others would claim for themselves; namely: every body shall have an opinion and views of his own upon all subjects and questions but shall always listen carefully to the suggestions and examine the ideas of others; perhaps, is he wrong and the rest right.

3. No oppression, forse, quarrel or fighting shall be practiced by any of the members, neither inside nor outside of the Circle.

4. Everybody shall be fully independent of all the others; provided that his actions and conduct are not in the way of anybody.

5. Nobody shall dictate or prohibit anything to anybody else, unless he is directly concerned in the business.

6. Whereas it is universally acknowledged that all what breathes, feels pain and joy as well as human beings, — Resolved : that it be the duty of every member of the Order not to torture or to cause any sufferings to any living beings, unless it be for self-defence or protection of personal property.

7. Let it be the desire of every member to help all others and try to make them pleasant and comfortable; but at the same time remind those, who involuntarily may commit somethings wrong, to better themselves. Such remarks shall be made privately and in a mild manner.

8. The Meetings of the Home-Circle will take place when the members will find it best.

9. The Officers of the society shall contain: a President, Secretary and Treasurer; They shall be reelected every 4 Weeks.

10. The Venerable Members of the Circle shall be honored and respected by the whole Membership.

11. The Secretary shall keep a brief and full record of all the proceedings of the Meetings and report everyone of them at the next meeting.

12. Any Law or Regulation may be added to this Constitution, according to the will of the members.

13. Every Member shall try to observe and practice the principles of the Constitution as strict as possible.

Carrie A. Noyes
J. A. Noyes
Cora R. Noyes
V. H. Noyes
A. M. Noyes
Paul Noyes
Ray Noyes
Viola Harmon
Sam Wegler, Secretary

* * * * *

The document reveals the thoughtful respect, dignity, empathy, and compassion family members expected to be displayed by another both in and outside the home, and the allowance of perhaps an unusual degree of independence as well. Quite a different arrangement from the utopian experiment conducted by their relation John Humphrey Noyes of Oneida fame.

We see all the children were present to apply their signatures, including the eldest daughter Emma Viola Harmon, who had moved to Chehalis in Washington State with her husband, but was apparently visiting.

Sam Wegler is given as secretary for this meeting. I have examined several censuses and can’t begin to place who this individual may have been.