Mary Porter Rorick

Mary S. Porter, wife of the late Mark C. Rorick, was born in Seneca township Michigan April 17, 1850. She was the daughter of John C. Porter and Louisa (King) Porter, Pioneers of Lenawee County.

She was one of four children: Frank, who died at four years of age; Sylvester K. Porter, of South Pasadena, California; and Harriet Rorick of Morenci.

She received her education at the Medina Academy and was married in Medina to Mark C. Rorick August 9, 1868. They began housekeeping in a log house on the Rorick farm in Seneca township where they remained until their removal to Morenci April 1, 1895.

An unusual coincidence was the marriage of the sister Harriet to Mr. Rorick’s brother, Leroy W.

To Mr. and Mrs. Rorick were born three children: John Porter Rorick of Adrian; Myrtie C. Baldwin, wife of E.N. Baldwin of Howell: Maude L., who died in 1899 at the age of 14.

There are living 13 grandchildren, three great grandchildren, a niece Mrs. W.D. Murphy of Columbus, Oho, a nephew Cosper M. Rorick of Morenci.

Mr. Rorick died in Morenci February 6, 1922. Since that time Mrs. Rorick has lived a quiet, uneventful life within her home with her devoted companion.

Source: Lundahl, Helen Rorick. (n.d.) The Rorick Family in America. (NB: This manuscript is held in the Toledo-Lucas County Library and contains a number of transcriptions of undated newspaper clippings.)

Well Known Morenci Resident Passes Away

Mark C. Rorick, older son of Cosper and Nancy A. Breese Rorick, was born on a farm in Seneca township, Michigan Dec. 7, 1845 and died Feb. 6, 1922. His brother Leroy W. was born Sept. 14, 1847. He lived with his parents in a log house until the brick house was built in ’68. Cosper Rorick, father of M.C. Rorick, had a small clearing 3-4 mile north of what is now Seneca village, woods being on all sides. Canandaigua was the nearest post office and trading point combined and traveling was accomplished entirely by ox team or by horse back. The nearest church was at Medina, seven miles distant, and this they attended every Sunday morning. It was necessary to make an early start as they drove an ox team and wagon with a board across the wagon box for the little boys.

When about five years of age “Mark” commenced school in the home district 2 1/2 miles way in the Rorick district today. He walked back and forth to school. When the Tufts school house was being built he attended school in a part of the James Lord home, temporarily.

A part of the home farm was deeded for school purposes and the new building was considered adequate for that time. One feature differing from today was the interior arrangement by which the boys and girls sat facing one another. Then he attended school in Canandaigua and later at Medina Academy for one year, where he and his brother boarded themselves.

Adrian was the center of trade for the county at that time and they planned to make the return trip in a day to that point when taking produce, which made a long hard day.

About this time he met the girl of his choice, Mary S. Porter, who was attending Medina Academy. They were married at the parsonage in Medina by Rev. Boyington, Aug. 9, 1868, which was a surprise to their near relatives, as a triple wedding had been under consideration to include Estell H. Rorick and S.K. Porter, who were married the 20th of the same month.

Mr. and Mrs. Rorick lived for one year with his parents in the brick house when they bought 40 acres adjoining on the south and moved into a log house, where they spent one winter and two summers. While the log house was a shelter it would not seem livable to the young folks of today, being of one room with a loft overhead. The windows were stationary and of six small panes.

With great resourcefulness the lack of a clock was overcome by the ingenious device of drawing a line at a certain angle on the doorstep so on a sunny day the young housewife cold tell when to start preparations for dinner. On account of the discomforts of winter the young couple moved back with the parents into the commodious brick house. They sold their forty acres, bought forty of Mr. Rorick’s father and added more to it until there were the 185 acres now owned by John P. Rorick. They remained here until they came to Morenci twenty-seven years ago.

In 1870 the Wabash railroad was built through Seneca and a little village sprang up, including a post office and church. Soon they felt the need of a new church and Mr. Rorick was, with others, successful in soliciting funds for a new building.

Their home was always open to traveling ministers, school masters, singing teachers, or whoever came to the little church for special occasions. It was always a great satisfaction to Mr. Rorick to be able to entertain his friends in his home and to act as host at his bountiful table. His hospitality was unquestioned. Later this church burned to the ground and Mr. Rorick contributed liberally toward a new one, and before this was completed it was struck by lightning and again burned down, to all of which he helped materially.

For many years he was school director and was always interested in anything pertaining to the public good. He was ambitious and unusually strong. He cleared a large amount of land with the ox team. A singular coincidence may be mentioned in that M.C. Rorick and his brother Leroy married sisters, lived in close relationship on adjoining farms and each had a son born on the same day.

The father, Cosper Rorick, died in 1874. To Mr. and Mrs. Rorick were born three children, John Porter, Myrtie, wife of E.N. Baldwin of Fayette, O., and Maude, who died at the age of fourteen.

Mr. Rorick was one of the first dairy farmers in the county, sending his milk to the Horton cheese factory. He took great interest in the county fair, acting as judge for several years, also in the three town Pioneer picnic, which was held annually in a grove near Seneca.

His heart was always with the farmer and his problems, which he solved by himself by hard work, good business judgment and strictest economy. All through his life in Morenci his love remained for the old home on the farm, which though the early years were full of hardship was sacred with the memories of home life.

After coming to Morenci Mr. Rorick entered the retail grocery and meat business, also wool and stock buying. Her purchased at different times more farms which he improved and cultivated.

He joined the Knights of Pythias order as charter member, and has been one of the most loyal, active members to the time of his death.

He had a gift of being able to rise and represent the order, whether at home or in the lodge room of a neighboring town, in a very pleasing manner. His mother’s death occurred in 1912 and the brother Leroy in 1917. The brothers loved each other with a deep loyalty, in fact love of family was a strong characteristic of the deceased.

For many years the Rorick family reunion was an annual event of importance and his home was always ready for the gathering if needed. Mr. and Mrs. Rorick celebrated their fiftieth wedding anniversary some three years ago. One of the greatest problems before the American people today would be solved if the example of their home life could be more closely imitated. The question comes to one’s mind, with their advantages of education and means, the younger men and women of today will take up the work of the passing generation and apply to it the same amount of ambition and courage. If so what wonderful things may be accomplished.

There remain thirteen grandchildren who have a splendid heritage of honesty, thrift, integrity, loyalty and ambition. Mr. Rorick was strong in the principles he believed to be right, a strong advocate of temperance, staunch member of the Democratic party, always interested in matters of public interest with careful, prompt attention to detail of the management of his farms, which would mean success in any business enterprise. He possessed an unusually social nature and many friends will miss his face at the window, as he would wave a friendly hand to passersby and welcome calls from his physician and friends.

The grandchildren even to the youngest, will never forget the welcome always awaiting them at grandfather’s home.

In the passing of Mr. Rorick the last of the double cousins to bear the Rorick name, descendants of the three Rorick brothers who married three Breese sisters, has gone. But the closing of a well ordered and well spent life bears out the prophecy of Job,

Thou shalt come to thy grave in a full age,
like a shock of corn cometh in his season.

The funeral service was held at 2 o’clock, Wednesday, at the home on Main Street and was conducted by Rev. H.A. Manahn and Judge B.L. Hart. The remains were laid to rest in Oak Grove Cemetery. The pall bearers were John Poucher, C.F. Buck, Oliver Onweller, A.A. Kennedy, Ed. Gallup and Tom Snow.

Those from out of town who were in attendance at the funeral were E.N. Baldwin of Fayette, Mrs. W.D. Murphy of Columbus, John Cole of Weston, Mr. and Mrs. Henry Crane, John Rorick and F.T. Sullivan of Fayette, A.V. Foster of Toledo, Mr. and Mrs. George Horton of Fruit Ridge, E.B. Root of Adrian, Judge and Mrs. B.L. Hart of Adrian, Melvin McCloe of Detroit, Mr. and Mrs. James Scott and Mrs. Carl Guss of Medina, Mr. and Mrs. Bert Porter of Weston and Mr. and Mrs. Ed. Moore of Canandaigua.

Source:  Lundahl, Helen Rorick.  (n.d.) The Rorick Family in America.  (NB: This manuscript is held in the Toledo-Lucas County Library and contains a number of transcriptions of undated newspaper clippings.)

A Well Known Citizen Gone

Death of Leroy W. Rorick at his Home in Morenci Last Saturday Morning

Leroy W. Rorick, a well known citizen of Morenci, died at his home here last Saturday morning, March 10, 1917, after an illness of several months. The funeral service was held Monday under the direction of the K. of P. Lodge of which he was a member.

Judge B.L. Hart of Adrian and Hon. B.D. Chandler of Hudson, who represented the order, gave words of sympathy and helpfulness to the bereaved family.

Miss Virginia Wilson sang a solo. The out of town relatives who attended the funeral were: Mrs. William Rorick of Buffalo, N.Y., Mrs. Spencer Sloan, Mrs. Della McCloe, H.C. Rorick and wife, A.V. Foster and wife of Toledo, J.C. Rorick of Wauseon, Dr. and Mrs. E.H. Rorick, Mr. and Mrs. Fred Sullivan, P.F. Cawley and daughter, Helen, Earl Baldwin and wife, John Rorick and Mrs. G.H. Crane of Fayette, Hon. G.B. Horton and John Cole of Weston.

Leroy W. Rorick was born in Seneca township, Sept. 14, 1847. His father, Cosper Rorick, a native of New Jersey, came to Michigan in 1840 and commenced with the pioneers in the work of changing a wilderness to a domain of elegant homes and productive farms. His father was married to Nancy A. Breese, Jan. 15, 1845, and they settled on a farm one mile north of Seneca in a log house with primitive surroundings, where Leroy was born. He grew up on the farm laboring with his father in the fields as boys in those days did and walking two and a half miles to a district school house for his education which was completed at the Medina Academy.

He was married Feb. 10, 1870 to Harriet L. Porter to whom were born one daughter, Nellie R., wife of Dr. Murphy of Columbus, OH and Cosper M., cashier of the First National Bank of Morenci. He commenced the work of an active life on the farm where he resided until 1888, when he moved to Morenci where he lived a retired life for one year, then going to Fayette where he purchased a livery business which he successfully followed for nine years. Disposing of the same, he followed the business of harness making for about six years in Morenci, after he which he purchased a farm two miles west of Weston where he resided about three years. He then purchased a small country home near Seneca where he lived until the spring of 1916 when he built a home and moved to Morenci.

His life has been a full demonstration of industry, kindness and business integrity and his faithful friends are numerous wherever he is known. His departure is mourned by all who knew him. He is survived by one brother, Mark C. Rorick of Morenci.

Source:  Lundahl, Helen Rorick.  (n.d.) The Rorick Family in America.  (NB: This manuscript is held in the Toledo-Lucas County Library and contains a number of transcriptions of undated newspaper clippings.)

Mr. and Mrs. Mark C. Rorick Had a Gold Wedding Day

Mrs. and Mrs. M.C. Rorick Celebrate Fiftieth Anniversary of Their Marriage

Scholars at Medina Academy

Worthy Members of Honored Pioneer Family

Two Other Golden Wedding Anniversaries to Follow

Friday, August 9th. Mr. and Mrs. M.C. Rorick observed their golden wedding anniversary in a happy manner at the same time giving pleasure to some thirty near relatives. Dinner was served at Hotel Saulsbury at one long table and a variety of ages was represented ranging from the host down to the twin son and daughter of Mr. and Mrs. E.N. Baldwin.

A four course dinner was enjoyed after which the afternoon was spent at the family home on Main Street. Ice cream and cake were served. Those present were Mr. and Mrs. E.N. Baldwin and family, Dr. and Mrs. E.H. Rorick of Fayette, J.P. Rorick and family, Mr. and Mrs. S.K. Porter, Mr. and Mrs. L.H. Converse, Mesdames Harriet, Amelia and Amy Rorick, Mr. and Mrs. C.M. Rorick.

There will be two other golden anniversaries of this company during the present month, those of Mr. and Mrs. S.K. Porter, also Dr. and Mrs. E.H. Rorick.

Fifty years ago Mary Porter, then a girl of eighteen and daughter of the well known John C. Porter and wife of Seneca township, married Mark C. Rorick, aged 23, son of Cosper and Nancy Rorick. The marriage took place at the Baptist parsonage in Medina, Rev. Boynton officiating. Both having been scholars at Medina Academy, this seemed a fitting and thriving place for the event. At that time there was no post office at what is now Seneca village, Canandaigua being the nearest. [The couple started their married life] in a log house opposite the home of the late F.E. Bryant. Three years later the couple moved a short distance north to what is called the “home” place now occupied by J.P. Rorick. After about 24 years here of extensive farming, Mr. and Mrs. Rorick moved to Morenci where their daughter, Maud, died in 1899. This has been the only death among the children and grandchildren.

Mr. and Mrs. Rorick are the fortunate grandparents of twelve boys and girls besides enjoying the relationship of a large family and many friends.

Source:  Lundahl, Helen Rorick. (n.d.) The Rorick Family in America.  (NB: This manuscript is held in the Toledo-Lucas County Library and contains a number of transcriptions of undated newspaper clippings).

Golden Wedding Anniversary

Dr. and Mrs. E.H. Rorick of Fayette, OH and Mr. and Mrs. S.K. Porter of Morenci, Mich., celebrated their golden wedding anniversaries at the Blair Hotel in Morenci, Thursday, Aug. 22. It is an unusual and remarkable occurrence for two couples to come down through life together, as has been the case with Dr. and Mrs. Rorick and Mr. and Mrs. Porter.

In the center of a flower-decked table on which a sumptuous dinner was served, was a large basket of golden-hearted Ophelia roses, a remembrance from the guests. The brides each wore a quaint corsage bouquet, the gift of Dr. Rorick Bennett, of Detroit. In the afternoon ice cream, cake and punch were served on the spacious lawn on S.K. Porter, East Main Street.

The double wedding ceremony was performed in the parsonage by Rev. James Noynton, the pastor of the Baptist church at Medina. Both couples have a large circle of friends and acquaintances who extend to them congratulations upon this rare occasion.

The guests were Mr. and Mrs. A.V. Foster, Hon. and Mrs. Horton C. Rorick of Toledo, Mrs. (Dr.) Rorick Bennett and daughter Mrs. George Clark of Detroit, Mrs. and Mrs. Fred Sullivan, Mr. and Mrs. Earl Baldwin, Mr. and Mrs. Henry Crane of Fayette, Mr. and Mrs. J.C. Rorick of Wauseon, Mr. and Mrs. M.C. Rorick, Mr. and Mrs. C.M. Rorick, Mr. and Mrs. G.H. Rorick, Mr. and Mrs. J.P. Rorick, Mrs. Amelia Rorick, Mrs. Amy Rorick, Mr. and Mrs. H.E. Spear, Mrs. P.H. Spear and Mr. and Mrs. L.H. Converse.

S.K. Porter and Mary Rorick were residents of Seneca Township at the time of their marriage, both living near Seneca Village. After their marriage, they continued to live on the Porter homestead until recent years, when they retired to Morenci. Mr. Porter was Vice President of the First National Bank until recently when he resigned that he might be free from the duties imposed by the position.

Estell Rorick and Mary Acker were residents of Morenci at the time of their marriage. Later, Mr. Rorick took his medical courses at the U. of M. He practiced at Tedrow and then located at Fayette, which pace has been his home except for a short period of years when he resided in Columbus, OH.

The warmth of their genial presence in the community where they reside has left ever a wholesome atmosphere of cheer.

Dr. Rorick in his profession during the past years had been able to enter the hearts of many homes and to have part in the deepest things of many lives. He has time and again given material aid in a silent and inauspicious way to those who will never forget. Generosity pure and simple is an attribute not amiss for Dr. and Mrs. Rorick

When Fayette was struggling in the its steps of progress support was always coming from the Rorick home. Perhaps there is no better way to describe the attitude of these people toward the community than in the words of the poet, “Write me as one who loves his fellow men,” and as a seeming reward for such helpful living, youthful mind and heart have remained with both, and this through half a century. It is not for us to estimate the value of such a home.

Source:  Lundahl, Helen Rorick.  (n.d.) The Rorick Family in America.  (NB:  This manuscript is held in the Toledo-Lucas County Library and contains a number of transcriptions of undated newspaper clippings).

Cosper M. Rorick

Cosper M. Rorick, who is one of the representative business men of the younger generation in the village of Morenci, where he is manager of the W.A. Mace real estate and loan business, is a native son of Lenawee county and a scion of one of the old and honored families of this section of the state. He was born in Seneca township, this county, Dec. 31, 1874, and is a son of Leroy W. and Harriet L. (Porter) Rorick, both of whom were likewise born in Seneca township, where their respective parents located in the early pioneer period. Casper Rorick, paternal grandfather of of the subject of this review, was a native of New Jersey, and he came to Lenawee County, Michigan, as one of the early settlers of Seneca township, where he eventually became the owner of a landed estate of 400 acres, a very considerable portion of which he reclaimed to cultivation prior to this death, which occurred Nov. 27, 1874. His venerable widow, whose maiden name was Nancy A. Breese, now maintains her home in the village of Morenci, where she is held in reverent affection as one of the noble pioneer women of the county. Leroy Rorick was reared to manhood on the old home-stead farm, and after duly availing himself of the advantages of the common schools of Seneca township he continued his studies for some time in Medina Academy. He continued to be actively identified with agricultural pursuits for many years after initiating his independent career, but in the late 80’s he removed from his farm in Fayette, Fulton County, Ohio, which lies contiguous to Lenawee County, Mich., and was there engaged in a livery business for a period of nine years. He then disposed of his various interests in Fayette and took up his residence in the village of Morenci. A few months later he returned to his farm in Seneca township, where he has since lived virtually retired and where is enjoying the reward of former years of toil and endeavor. He is well known and highly esteemed in this country and while he has never been an aspirant for public office he has given a zealous support to the cause of the Democrat party.

He is affiliated with Independent Order of Odd Fellows and the Knights of Pythias.

Of the two children, the subject of this sketch is the younger, and the older child, Nellie, is now the wife of Dr. William D. Murphy, who is engaged in the practice of his profession in the city of Columbus, Ohio, and who is recognized as a physician and surgeon of marked ability. He was graduated from Starling Medical College, Columbus, Ohio, and after his graduation began the practice of his profession in Fayette, that state, where he remained until the spring of 1908, when he returned to the capital city of the state, where he has secured a representative clientage. He is a Republican in politics and was a member of the board of pension examiners in Fulton County, Ohio, as well as a member of the village council of Fayette.

He is affiliated with the Masonic fraternity, in which he has attained to the thirty-second degree of the Scottish Rite, and also is affiliated with the Independent Order of Odd Fellows and the Knights of Pythias. He and his wife have three children — Leroy, William and John. Dr. and Mrs. Murphy are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church.
Cosper M. Rorick, the immediate subject of this review, secured his preliminary educational training in the public schools of Seneca, and after completing the curriculum of the high school he was for some time a student in the Normal School in Fayette, Ohio. After leaving school he was associated with his father in the livery business in Fayette, and about 1898 he came to Morenci, where he purchased the harness and saddlery business of Leroy S. Brener. He continued the enterprise until 1900, when he sold the business to his father, who later sold it to William Sears. Since retiring from this enterprise the subject of this review has held the responsible position of manager of the real-estate and loan business of W.A. Mace, in which connection the farm lands controlled aggregate fully 800 acres.

In his political allegiance Mr. Rorick is found arrayed as a loyal supporter of the cause of the Democratic party, and he served four years as township treasurer of Seneca township, as township supervisor for one year. He is affiliated with the Masonic fraternity and the Knights of Pythias.

On Nov. 30, 1897, Mr. Rorick was united in marriage with Miss Georgia L. Mace, daughter of George A. and Jennie (Starkweather) Mace, the former of whom died in 1875 and the latter is now a resident of the city of Lansing, Mich., though both were reared and educated in Lenawee County. Mr. and Mrs. Rorick have four children: Amanda, W. Kirk, Leroy Max, and George M.

Source: Bonner, Richard Illenden. 1909. Memoirs of Lenawee County. Volume 2. Madison, WI: Western Historical Association.