Keweenaw County Michigan

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James Bawden

Source: History of the Upper Peninsula of Michigan: containing a full account of its early settlement, its growth, development, and resources, an extended description of its iron and copper mines : also, accurate sketches of its counties, cities, towns, and villages ... biographical sketches, portraits of prominent men and early settlers. Publication Info: Chicago : Western Historical Co., 1883. Houghton County Section: Page 292

JAMES BAWDEN, deceased, was born in Breaze, Cornwall, England, December 4, 1813. He was a blacksmith by trade, and emigrated to America in 1844. He visited Wisconsin Territory, and from there came to Lake Superior in 1845 with Dr. Petted on a surveying and exploring expedition. He helped to build the first house at Eagle Harbor, and organized that settlement. He returned to England in the fall of 1846, and was married in Cornwall, April 3, 1847, to Miss E. A. Williams, daughter of Capt. William Williams. He then returned to Eagle Harbor, bringing his wife with him, arriving in June, 1847, having made the trip from the Sault Ste. Marie on the propeller Independence, the first steam vessel on Lake Superior. Mr. Bawden was employed as Mining Captain at the North American Mine, and was connected with it two years. He then bought the dock and small warehouse at Eagle Harbor; he built a large house and hotel; he carried on the warehouse and hotel business, dealt in real estate, erected buildings, which he sold or leased. He sold out the warehouse business after five years to Lenton & Morrison. In 1853, his hotel was burned; he at once built a large four-story frame hotel in place of the old one. This house was one of the largest on the Upper Peninsula, and well furnished throughout. Mr. Bawden also built a large store building and stocked it with general merchandise, which was conducted by his son. He kept his hotel, contracted for wood and transported freight. He was the leading business man of this section. A man of superior intelligence, upright and honorable in everything, possessed of remarkable energy and enterprise, he commanded the respect and esteem of all who knew him; his death, at the early age of forty-nine, cut short his business, and deprived his family of a loving and honored protector; he died April 28, 1861, leaving a wife and four children. The eldest son, Albert J., lives at Eagle Harbor; the second, Fred J., is Superintendent of the Mineral Range Telegraph Co., with headquarters at Hancock; the only daughter, Kittle L., died, aged twenty-three; the youngest son, Augustus C., died, aged ten years.