Volume III Issue 1 January 1998 free

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Jason Dunton:
A Biographical Sketch of a 19th Century Pioneer

Jason1.gif (78892 bytes)1. Jason8 Dunton (Nathaniel7, William6, Joseph5, Timothy4, John3, John2, Samuell1) was born December 21, 1824 in Mt. Vernon, Kennebec, Maine, and died March 11, 1910 in Lebanon, Smith, Kansas.

As a teen, Jason learned the trade of wheelwright but farmed much of his life.  He married (1) Sophia Lunette Jones September 17, 1848 in Concord Township, Somerset, Maine1.  Jason and Sophia made their home in Concord, Maine until moving to Farmington Falls, Maine2 in 1854.  They remained there until relocating to Algona, Iowa in 1861.  Although he had no high school or college education, he studied for, and passed the teacher's exam. He taught school in Kossuth County, Iowa.  Sophia passed away on October 29, 1864  and  is buried in Algona, Kossuth Co., Iowa.

Children of Jason Dunton and Sophia Jones are:

2 i. May Lunnette Dunton, born October 06, 1849 in Madison County, Maine; died September 12, 1852 in Concord, Somerset, Maine.

3 ii. Lewis Carlysle Dunton, born November 08, 1850 in Concord, Somerset, Maine; died January 01, 1942 in John & Gladys Hargreaves home 3 mi. South of Molalla, Clackamas, Oregon3. He married Sarah Marie Wheelock February 17, 1878 in the Alfred & Cinda Wheelock home near Irvington, Iowa4.

4 iii. Edwin Worth Dunton, born January 06, 1852 in Concord Township, Somerset, Maine; died September 09, 1939 in Somerset Co., Maine. He married Lillian Bartlett January 04, 1875 in Algona, Kossuth Co., Iowa.

5 iv. George William Dunton, born September 22, 1853 in Farmington Falls, Franklin, Maine; died March 05, 1931. He married (1) Annie E. Hartwell April 11, 1875 in Algona, Iowa. He married (2) Lydia Schenck October 03, 1881 in Mankato, Jewell, Kansas.

6 v. Willis Larkin Dunton, born September 22, 1855 in Farmington Falls, Franklin, Maine; died June 27, 1870 in Plum Creek, Kossuth, Iowa.

7 vi. Blanche Adeal Dunton, born April 06, 1858 in Farmington Falls, Franklin, Maine; died November 15, 1929. She married Llewellan Kennison.

8 vii. Alonzo Fish Dunton, born November 05, 1860 in Portland, Cumberland, Maine; died April 03, 1955 in Manhatten, Jewell, Kansas. He married Anna H. Hammond April 13, 1885.

He married (2) Ordelia Schenck April 08, 1865, daughter of Horace Schenck and Elizabeth Orvis.   She is buried at Price Cemetery in Lebanon, Kansas in the same grave as her husbands, though to date (03-27-1987) she is unmarked on the headstone.  

Children of Jason Dunton and Ordelia Schenck are:

9 i. Harvey Nathaniel36 Dunton, born March 18, 1867 in Algona, Kossuth Co., Iowa; died June 12, 1948 in Colorado Springs, Colorado. He married Edna Alice Stanfield May 25, 1888.

10 ii. Clara Laurilla Dunton, born April 27, 1872 in Algona, Kossuth, Iowa; died 1937. She married James Andrew Belden August 30, 1889.

11 iii. Dawn Adell Dunton, born April 25, 1882 in Salem, Jewell, Kansas; died June 18, 1936 in Lyman, Elbert, Colorado and is buried at Blue Rapids, Marshall County, Kansas. She married Robert John Addams July 06, 1904 in Lebanon, Smith, Kansas.

12 iv. Verner Jay Dunton, born October 19, 1892 in Salem, Jewell Co., Kansas; died December 1987 in Florida. He married Anna Pearl Sharpnack Drake May 01, 1920 in Colorado Springs, El Paso Co., Colorado.

In about 1869, after receiving a call to the ministry, he became an ordained preacher and filled several pulpits.  Jason Dunton was a self-proclaimed Spiritualist and it was because of this declaration that he and his wife Ordelia were excommunicated from the Methodist Church.

In a letter to his family members on the 80th anniversary of his birth (Dec. 21, 1904), he writes, "I have been a farmer the most of my days; have been an ordained minister for the last thirty-five years; am a Spiritualist in belief and a Clairvoyant Medium in practice; politically a Socialist . . . Have always lead an honest, upright and truthful life . . . I have found no value in ceremonious religion, but that purity of purpose and goodness of action are the true sources of happiness.  I believe in the oneness and fatherhood of God, in the brotherhood of man, in eternal progressive immortality, the return and communion of spirits and final happiness of all mankind.  My advice and prayer is that the joy and happiness of right living may be yours through earth life."

According to his obituary, published in The Lebanon Argus, March 17, 1911, "In Iowa he successfully met all of the trials of pioneer life and remained there until 1880 when he moved his family to Kansas, and filed on a timber claim five miles north-east of Lebanon, when they moved to Lebanon, remaining here up until the time of his death."     After moving to Jewell, Kansas, he worked as a surveyor in both Iowa & Kansas.

He lectured for many years in Iowa and Kansas on topics of science, religion, politics, and philosophy. In 1905 he traveled west to visit with family and to speak at the 4th of July celebration at Wright's Park (near Liberal, Oregon). Jason was 81 years old at the time. He loved to lecture and continued doing so until his death at the age of 85.   Price Cemetery in Lebanon, Kansas is the final resting place of his earthly body.


1. Marriage to Jason Dunton is recorded in "Concord, Maine Family Registry and Book of Intentions".
Plot Map of 1861 Farmington Falls
3. Willa Dawn Dunton Turnham
4. Copy of both marriage and certificate. Jason Dunton signed the Certificate of Marriage.

[Mike Dunton notes - I have copies of obituary, Proof of Will, Ordelia and Jason's marriage license, 1880 Census Index Card, Plot Map of 1861 Farmington Falls, letters to family, photos, etc. Most of these document copies were provided by Willa Dawn Dunton Turnham and Cande Fitch.]

The Dunton Resource Archive Project Online
by Michael L. Dunton

A little over a year ago, when I began the process of mapping out the nature and purpose of this web site, I penned the "A, B, Cs" on the main page.  They are a short representation, or mission statement for this genealogical project.  They are:

Aid in Dunton / Dunten / Dutton family research.
Be a central repository for family information.
Create a tool for communicating and sharing with other members.

"A" has been met by the act of uploading and maintaining this presence on the World Wide Web. "C' is being accomplished by people using "The Searcher's Page" and by managing the DUTTON-L and DUNTON-L rootsweb mailing lists.

The "B" point of the statement has always been in the works - and I want to thank everyone who has submitted copies of photographs, copies of important papers, genealogies, histories, and other items of importance to the family - but I have finally gotten a first pass of the Archive Page completed.

This project will be a work in progress. The major works in the "paper archive" have been catalogued but it is my goal to catalogue and organize all other resources in the collection.  This will be a long process so check back from time to time.

The rest of this article is a copy of the text that forms the preamble to the Archive Page:

The charter of The Dunton Family Homesite includes "reconnecting the lines" of the Dunton family, as well as any and all spelling variations.  Since the site went online in December 1996,  hundreds of visitors have found us.  Many of these are documented relatives. 

This particular page is intended to make available the documents, photographs and publications that have been used in researching and documenting our family.   Some of these items are secondary sources while others are copies of original documents.

They are organized by category.  At first, the list will include   published books and unpublished genealogies.  As time permits, I will begin to catalogue and update the list with the citations for  documents that the archive contains.  Please email us for information on how to submit information to the archive.

We will be working on making the information from these documents available to others in the near future.  At that time, the proceeds from the fees charged for copying, postage and handling will be used solely towards the furtherance of this Web project and promoting continued research It will not be used for personal gain.  The effort behind this family resource has been based on donations of time, talents, resource materials, and money.   Any donations are always welcomed and the benefit passed on to all.

"Announcements" - Submit obituaries, marriage, military service, special events, and birth announcements to keep us all up to date!

Sue & Butch (real name is Elwood) Dunton from Ulster, Pennsylvania, will be celebrating their 20th wedding anniversary on January 7, 1998. They would love to hear from other Duntons.

Sgt. Joel R. Dunton of Jacksonville, North Carolina recently received the Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal, third award, for the period of 12 December 94 to 12 December 97. The award denotes faithfull and honorable service in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service.  Congratulations Sgt. Dunton!

Remembered - Marie Rudolfina Bellong Dunton ("Mitzi") of Babylon, New York, passed away December 1, 1997 at Good Samaritan Hospital in West Islip, New York. She was 85 years old. Mitzi was married to Samuel Cady Dunton (b.1910 in Bethpage, New York, d. Jan. 1976). She is survived by three children, five grandchildren, and five great-grandchildren. In the early 1920s she immigrated from Graz, Austria and during her youth she performed with her parents and sister in a vaudeville act in the New York area. They went on tour throughout the U.S. and Canada and she also performed solo acts. (Submitted by her grandson, Vance Dunton)

"Life On The Farm"
Being a brief monthly accounting of the events from life on the Victor Hugo Dunton farmstead in Oregon

Well, another year has passed and it is hard to believe that the once distant date of the year 2000 is fast approaching us.  Although I make my living off of high technology and integrate these technologies into my career, as well as my hobbies, I also have a deep love for days past.

Ever since I was a child I have tried to learn as much about outdoor craft and the "old timey ways" as I could.   I ate up the Foxfire series of books and spent as much time with my Great-grandpas and my Grandpas as time (and vacations to Oregon) allowed.

Although I grew up in the suburbs, I always wanted to live in the country and in high school, I even told my Dad that I wanted to live on the old Dunton Family Farm someday.   He thought that I was nuts.

Well, they say that you should be careful what you wish for because the opportunity arose, in 1987, to buy the place.  I did, we moved in early 1988, and now 10 years have past.

A lot has changed . . . in the world . . . in our family . . . but the farm is very similar to the way that it has always been.  It has been modernized a bit over the years, but it still would be recognizable to my Great-granddad.

A new year is here.  It is a natural time to reflect on times past and to count our blessings.  I hope that you and your families have a great 1998.

Mike Dunton - 12/26/97

If you have an interesting story that you'd like to share, PLEASE submit them.

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It was last Updated January 4, 1998