Nathan S. Kinney

Updated: 23 May 2009

Sunday's Kalamazoo Gazette contained pictures of Mr. and Mrs. N. S. Kinney of Oshtemo, who celebrated their 57th wedding anniversary Feb. 4. They are the parents of Mrs. R. W. Mitchell of Lawton. Commenting on their lives the Gazette says: "Fifty-seven years ago, Feb. 4, 1869, Miss Mary McKain and Mr. N. S. Kinney were united in marriage at Three Rivers. Since then they have lived in the vicinity of Oshtemo. "Mr. Kinney was born in Prarie Ronde township, March 9, 1844, where he lived until the age of 17 he enlisted in the Civil War, under Captain Johnson, Co. H, 12th Michigan Infantry. He served four years and five months. "Mrs. Kinney was born in County of Antrim, Ireland, Nov. 12, 1847, and came to America when a child. Mr. and Mrs. Kinney are the parents of four children, D. C. Kinney of El Paso, Texas; Hartwell Kinney of Oklahoma City, Okla; Hal Kinney of Mountain View, Okla., and Mrs. Ray Mitchell, Lawton."

1. Ethel Kinney (21 July 1873 - June 1932 in Oshtemo, MI, USA) married Ray Mitchell (d. 23 June 1923 in Lawton, Van Buren, MI, USA).
2. Didymus C. Kinney (b. Sept 1876 in MI)
3. Thomas Hartwell Kinney (b. 25 June 1886)
4. Hal Nathan Kinney (30 Oct 1887 - 15 June 1970) married Mildred Kinney Harrison. They had a son, Richard Hartwell Kinney (27 Oct 1923 in Mountain View, OK - 10 Oct 2010 in Mountain View, OK)

Mr. and Mrs. Nathan S. Kinney of Oshtemo celebrated on Tuesday the fitieth anniversay of their marriage and to join them in the festivities incident to the happiness of a golden wedding day, some thirty of their friends called in the evening. With the guests was Mrs. Ray Mitchell of Lawton, a daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Kinney, who were married in Three Rivers but who have spent their married life in Oshtemo. The guests brought with them well-filled baskets for the luncheon.

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Source: Portrait & Biographical Record of Kalamazoo, Allegan, & Van Buren Counties, Michigan containing biographical sketches of Prominent & Representative Citizens, Together with Biographies of all the Governors of the State, & of the Presidents of the United States. Chicago: Chapman Bros. 1892

"NATHAN S. KINNEY, the present efficient Supervisor of Oshtemo Township, Kalamazoo County, was born on the 9th of March, 1844, in Prairie Ronde Township, this county. He is the son of Niles Hartwell Kinney, a native of New York, born in the year 1800, and an early settler of Michigan. He took land from the Government on Prairie Ronde, one of the handsomest parts of the country in this section, and cleared two hundred acres. He was Justice of the Peace and a well-known and influential man. His wife bore the maiden name of Sarah Speers, she being a native of Ohio, and was married to the father of our subject in Huron County, her native State. To her were born six children, our subject being the youngest. Four others are now living: D.C., the eldest, residing on the old homestead; Mrs. P.H. Sayles makes her home in the northern part of Oceana County, Mich., her husband going there as an Indian trader, and being a well-known and prominent public man until his death, which occurred in 1891; William is making his home in Nebraska; and Niles H. is a resident of Iowa. The fourth child in order of birth met with an untimely death, being burnt when eleven years of age in the house owned by Elder Marck on Prairie Ronde in which was conducted a private school. Four other children perished at the same time. The good mother, an estimable and hard-working woman, was called to her rest in 1850, when our subject was a lad of six years, and his father died six years later.
Our subject was partly reared by his oldest brother, D.C. Kinney, and was taught farming during the summer months, during the winters attending the district schools. He enlisted in the late war in 1861, at the age of seventeen, under Capt. Johnson, in Company H, Twelfth Michigan Infantry, and served his country faithfully until he was honorably discharged, four years and five months later. He participated in a number of important engagements, among them being Shiloh, Metamora, Middlesburg, siege of Vicksburg, siege of Little Rock, Ark., Clarendon and Gregory's Landing. He was unusually fortunate in never receiving a wound in all his engagements, but he endured all the hardships of war and was sick in the hospital three different times from measles, lung fever and general disability. He also had his arm broken in being thrown from a horse in Van Buren, Tenn. The date on which Mr. Kinney was mustered out of the service with his regiment was February, 1866, at Camden, Ark.
On returning to the life of a civilian, Mr. Kinney engaged in farming on Prairie Ronde, which he continued until 1869. In this last-named year he chose as his companion in life Miss Mary McKain, a daughter of Thomas and Jane McKain. Both of her parents are still living, and are old settlers of Decatur Township, Van Buren County. After his marriage, our subject and his estimable wife moved to Oshtemo Township, where they now reside on one hundred and forty acres on sections 31 and 32, and are also the possesors of forty acres in Antwerp Township, Van Buren County. This estate is well improved and a good set of farm buildings are to be seen on it. He works as he fought--faithfully and steadily, and, with the able assistance of his amiable and capable wife, he has gained a splendid competency, and they are now living a peaceful and happy life, well liked by all their neighbors and many friends.
Mr. Kinney is heartily in favor of any movement that tends to enhance the prosperity of the community at large, and in politics is a staunch Republican. He served as Justice of the Peace of his township for a number of years and was elected Supervisor in 1888, and is now serving his fourth term, giving satisfaction to all concerned. He and his worthy wife are the parents of four children: Ethel, D.C., Thomas Hartwell and Hal."

"Uncle Nate" (uncle to Helen Kunce) Excerpted from her letter of circa 1967-1968:
"Regarding the Kinney family: Aunt Mary Mckain (sic) was married to Nathan Kinney--Uncle Nate--and they lived at Oshtemo and had a general store. I used to go their with my Grandmother to visit. They had 3 children--Ethel, who was a teacher, Hart and Ted. Hart married and lived in Okla. Aunt Esther (Lotta's) mother was the other sister of Jane Woods McKain and Mary. I don't recall an Uncle Will Kinney. There was Uncle Will McKain, who was married to Aunt Clara and they had one sone but can't recall his name now. Wouldn't you hate to have the name of Lucretia? If I didn't thank you for the new copies of the letter, I do so now. They were much clearer to read and they are interesting reading at any time