Walsh County, North Dakota
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Josiah and Harriett (Hawkins) Sanborn Family

JOSIAH AND HARRIET (Hawkins) SANBORN

Josiah Sanborn and his wife, Harriet (Hawkins) Sanborn, along with her parents, Mr. and Mrs. Sylvester Hawkins, had come to Medford township, Walsh County, North Dakota, in 1879 from Ohio. The Sanborn home became a community center. The hall in the upper story of his two-story log house was used chiefly for dances and Woodmen Lodge meetings.

The polling place was Bertram Carpenter’s general strore, established in 1881 in the northwest quarter of section 27. He hauled supplies from Minto, Dakota Territory. The one voting precinct of the township was in this store. Mr. Carpenter operated the store for three years. It was then moved to his brother’s farm in section 15 and used for a barn. Mr. Carpenter was at one time Walsh County Registrar of Deeds. He later became a resident of Minneapolis, Minnesota. Mr. Carpenter was married to Olive, the Sanborn’s daughter.

Mr. Sanborn was instrumental in organizing Medford township. He was the first chairman of Medford township. He was also chairman of the county board and the second county commissioner.

Mr. and Mrs. Sylvester Hawkins lived with their daughter, Mrs. Josiah Sanborn, until July 26, 1881, when they homesteaded the south half of section 26. Both died in Medford township. (We believe they named the township “Medford” as they moved there from Medford, Minnesota.)

The parents of Harriett Hawkins Sanborn and William Hawkins (last mentioned in Daniels Mills, Wisconsin) are Sylvester and Anna (Curtis) Hawkins. Anna Hawkins died in 1903 at the age of 73. Sylvester Hawkins died in 1889 at the age of 80. Their graves are in Fordville, North Dakota.

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