Biography of John Bort



Berrien County

Online Biographies


Also see [Railway Officials in America 1906]

Among the many gentlemen whose biographies appear on the pages of this history, none better deserve mention than he whose name stands at the head of this sketch. He was born Nov. 25, 1810, in Herkimer Co., N. Y.; his early life was spent on a farm. At the age of twenty he left his father, hiring as a farm-hand for two years at thirteen dollars per month. He then went to Canada, working in a saw mill at twenty six dollars per month.

Oct. 10, 1832, married Mariette, daughter of Otis and Mary Smith. Mrs. Bort was born Feb. 24, 1826, in Herkimer Co., N. Y. After his marriage Mr. Bort rented his fatherís farm, remaining there two years. At this time his father-in-law dying, he was appointed administrator of his estate; seven years passed before this was settled, there being a minor heir. For four years he engaged in farming, first in Jefferson and then in Herkimer County. Removing to Petersí Corners, he engaged in harness making; from that he went to traveling, selling fanning mills and pumps.

In 1844, Mr. Bort settled in this county, purchasing a farm of one hundred and seventeen acres in Niles township; he sold this and removed to Royalton township, now Lincoln, where he bought one hundred and forty four acres; again buying one hundred and sixty four acres in Royalton township, to which he removed, and on which he is now living. His principal employment while on the Lake farm was raising fruit.

Feb. 1, 1848, Mrs. Bort died, leaving four children, viz.: Otis S., Sophronia M., Mary J., and Charles E.

Jan. 2, 1850, he married, for his second wife, Sophronia, daughter of George Getman. Of this union were born six children, viz. : Albert, Fayette, Harrie G., Eddie G., Jay E., and Mariette. Albert is living in Nebraska, the others are at home with their parents. Mr. Bortís father raised a family of twelve chiidren, all living but one; two living in Michigan, one in Iowa, one in Wisconsin, and the others in New York. Mr. Bort is the ninth child, and he is now sixty.nine years old. His father died in 1870, aged eightythree years, having been twice married, his first wife dying in 1823, and the second in 1877.

Mr. Bort is an active, energetic map, anxious for the advancement of the country around him. He organized the first school on the lake, opening the school with only three scholars; has been school director and commissioner for two years. It has been his fortune nearly every time he has changed his residence, to stop where they had a schoolhouse to build, and he has assisted in building four schoolhouses.

Mr. Bort was ambitious to improve both his mind and his circumstances; this led him to employ diligently both his time and means, and as a result he has achieved a suecess in life which favorably contrasts with the beginning of his career.

History of Berrien and Van Buren Counties, Michigan
With Illistrations and Biographical Sketches
of Its Prominent Men and Pioneers.
D. W. Ensign & Co., Philadelphia 1880
Press of J. B. Lippincoff & Co., Philadelphia.

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