Monday, March 23, 2015

Another James Greer

A Greer name appearing in the same general time/place as our early Michigan pioneers is one James Greer, who I have not yet accounted for in my research. According to "Portrait and biographical album of Oakland County, Mich.: containing full page portraits and biographical sketches" (available on, this James Greer was born in England, probably around 1812, and he came with his parents to the US as a young child. They made their home in Canada (not sure where) and then returned to NY around 1828. James then came to Genesee County and bought a small tract, and sure enough there is a land patent for a James Greer in Genesee in 1838.  Then in 1854, he moved to West Bloomfield in Oakland County where he spent the rest of his life. This James Greer was married to Mary Mosier, born abt 1822 in NY. The children of James and Mary were Achsa, Robert, George, Mary Jane (Dandison), Ida, Clara, James M. and Lillian.

With this information, here is a point of clarification pertaining to my previous Greer research:

The Greer family that intersects most directly with mine is that of James Greer (1785-1857) and Jane Gillespie (1784-1868), as well as the family of their son John M. Greer (1806-1894) and his wife, Isabella E. Gillespie (1813-1891). This latter couple had 15 children, one of whom was named Robert, and whom I now believe I had mistakenly attributed as married to Emaline Campbell. The evidence seems to support that Robert Greer, born 1850 in MI, died 1940 in Los Angeles, who married Emaline Campbell was the son of James Greer and Mary Mosier. So what happened to MY Robert Greer? His mother's probate record in 1891 said her son Robert was in Ohio, and so far I know nothing more about him.

There is a death certificate for this new James Greer who died in West Bloomfield, MI in 1877 at age 63 (born about 1814), birthplace, England, and parents James Greer and Mary M. Greer. This is a little confusing because the wife of this James Greer was supposedly Mary Mosier, born about 1822 in New York, making both the mother and the wife named Mary M.

And then we have to wonder what, if any, connection this James Greer might have had to our Greer relations. It seems more than a coincidence that he had all these factors in common with our Greer relations:
  • came from the British Isles around the time of the War of 1812
  • lived in Canada and New York (don't we wish we knew where?) before coming to Michigan
  • settled in Oakland county in the same vicinity as our pioneers
If anybody knows if there is indeed a connection between this James Greer and the other Greer pioneers of early Oakland County, Michigan, please let me know!