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Cornelius De Smidt, Page 541
CORNELIUS De SMIDT, a veteran of the late war, and one among the earliest pioneers of Holland Township, is a native of Biervliet, province of Zeeland, Holland, where his birth occurred May 3, 1824. He is a son of Abraham and Wilhelmine (Crokek) De Smidt, who were natives of the same village.
In 1847, Mr. De Smidt accompanied his parents to the United States. Coming direct to Sheboygan County, the father located on a farm on section 35, in the town of Holland. For one year following their arrival, Cornelius remained at home and aided in carrying on the farm. However, he soon began on his own responsibility, and for some five years was employed as a farm hand. Mr. De Smidt was united in marriage on the 7th of December, 1852, to Miss Mary ya Marseelye, a daughter of Peter and Mary ( Scheerens) ya Marseelye, who is a native of Grode, Zeeland, born February 24, 1832. The wedding ceremony was performed by Rev. Mr. Deicket, of Canandaigua, N. Y.
Mr. and Mrs. De Smidt have become the parents of fourteen children, of whom ten are living: Abraham, born June 14, 1855, resides in Canandaigua County, N. Y.; Mary, born October 22, 1856, is the wife of Johannes Commers, a carpenter of Cedar Grove; Peter, born March 19, 1858, is a blacksmith in the same village; Anna, born October 4, 1859, married Isaac Janssen, a carpenter of Sheboygan; Wilhelmine Susanna, born November 16, 1861, married Martin Rottier, a farmer of St. Croix County, Wis.; Jacomina Cornelia, born March 5, 1862, is the widow of Peter Rottier, her home being in Milwaukee; Adrian, born February 14, 1864, is a ship-caulker of Sheboygan; Frances, born December 25, 1866, wedded Alvin Cain, a carpenter of the town of Holland; Jennie, born February 8, 1868, and Cornelius, born September 28, 1870, are at home.
In company with John Johnson, Mr. De Smidt purchased forty acres of land in 1854, bus subsequently our subject become the sole owner of the property. At the time of its purchase the land was covered with a heavy growth of timber, which has since been cleared away by the industry of its owner. In 1881 he built his present home, which is a comfortable farm-residence.
When the war broke out, Mr. De Smidt nobly responded to the call of his adopted country for troops to put down the rebellion, enlisting September 16, 1861, in Company H, First Wisconsin Regiment, and served gallantly until discharged at Cincinnati, Ohio, February 21, 1863, by reason of a gun-shot wound through the right arm. So severe was the injury that for some six months he was compelled to remain in the hospital at the city where he was discharged. The battle in which Mr. De Smidt received his wound was fought at Perryville, Ky., Gen. Bragg having command of the Confederate forces.
Politically, Mr. De Smidt is a Republican, and in religious faith he and his wife are Presbyterians. Whether as a soldier or a citizen, Mr. De Smidt has always performed his duties conscientiously and well.
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