Descendants of John Dysard

Compiled by Deanna West with assistance from
Harrison DySard's family collection of letters & documents

Email him at

Much of the documentation for this Biography was sent in by Harrison DySard
Additional sources added Mar 20, 2003 provided by - Paula Connolly

Generation 1:

John Dysard was born 15 June 1808 and died April 16, 1899 - see obituary on Greenwood Cemetery site.
Ref 1: by Esther DySard Wilson Letter on January 11, 1977 -
John Dysard arrived in the LaPorte County about 1837. Family lore states that John was born in a town across the bay from Edenburg, Scotland called Dysart but his obituary states that John was born in Dublin Ireland.
Esther writes: "John landed in Detroit, when that town had a population of 2200 people. While working as a surveyor John came through Michigan City with the Michigan Central Railroad. He purchased land in Illinois at Fort Sheridan now known as Chicago. He bought 40 acres of land where the Marshall Field's big store is now. Come spring he saw it was just a swampland. He traded it for a team of oxen and wagon; lost them in a fog which is now Gary, Ind., came on to Michigan City and settled on the old Dysard homestead as we know it today."

In a 1966 study done by Gene McDonald, states that John arrived around 1834 again refer to obituary on Greenwood Cemetery site.

John married Esther Ann Turner on July 4, 1838. Her name appears as Hester in some documents and census. But her obituary and obituaries of children show her name as being Esther. In the letters written by Esther Dysard Wilson and Stanley Dysard they mention the following:
Esther Wilson mentions that there were 13 children (John's obituary states that there were 12 children in total) in the John and Esther Dysard family and Stanley Dysard mentions the 5 children of the surviving brothers and sisters that are buried on the old Dysard homestead in LaPorte County. One child which appears in the 1850 census, but then disappears by the 1860 census, is Euphemia. There is no other mention of her in any of the later correspondence as there is the other surviving Dysard children. Esther died January 16, 1883 IN LaPorte County, IN

Russell Hapke in a conversation with Dorothy Pavolka, a descendant of the Pavolka family that purchased the land from Dysards, stated that as a little girl she remembered an old Dysard Cemetery behind the barn on the now existing Pavolka farm on Wozniak Road. She recalled as seeing the area as a little girl and maybe there were about 6 or 7 graves there. However, there were no tombstones and it was just a known family fact. And as late as 1977 the Dysard family knew the location of the graves but no stones were visible. Most of the family is buried in Greenwood Cemetery in Michigan City, Indiana. But it is clear in the writing of these letters that the burials in the Dysard Cemetery were that of John and Esther's children.

Generation 2: (Children of John and Esther and their descendants)

1. Ida Belle or Isabella J Dysard appears in the 1850 census (as Isabelle 10 years old) with her parents and appears as still living at home in the 1880 Census. She was b. 21 Dec 1839 in LaPorte County, IN. In about 1885 Ida Belle would go with her youngest surviving brother, Joseph, to Idaho and there she would marry Ernest Smith. I found them in the 1910 Federal Census, Grangeville, ID. He was born in Ohio on 2 Nov1832 and died in Grangeville, Idaho 26 Sep 1920. In the 1910 Federal Census for Grangeville, Idaho County, ID they state they have been married for 28 years. In 1914 Isabella J. is living in Grangeville, ID. They had one child; a son named George Smith. Isabella died 9 Nov 1934. Ref: Idaho Death Index: 1911 to 1951. They are both buried in Prairie View Cemetery, Grangeville, ID - block 4, lot 15 North End according to Idaho Cemetery records. The last census, 1930, showing Isabella on it, shows her living with her son George J. Smith, his wife Gertrude and children in Grangeville, Idaho Co., ID.
Isabella's husband, Ernest, served as a Private in the Indian Wars in 1877 and on Nov 24, 1920, Isabella makes application for pension for widows payment as he served for the Idaho Vols.

2. Euphemia Dysard was 8 in 1850 census. But she disappears from the 1860 census and is not mentioned in any of the letters of Stanley Dysard and Esther Dysard Wilson. Buried probably on the Dysard family farm before 1860.

3. Amelia age 7 in 1850 census married Walter O. Leeds in LaPorte County, Indiana on January 31, 1870 and they had at least a boy, Offley W, and a girl, Caroline. She died at 63 February 22, 1907. Walter died at age 63.

4. John R. Dysard, eldest surviving adult son, was born September 28, 1844 (also see obituary on Greenwood Cemetery site for John and Marietta's obituaries.) John married Marietta Jacobs in Kendall Co., Illinois on July 1, 1868. (Maraette?) b. abt April of 1850 and was the daughter of William and Almira Jacobs and can be found living in the Coolspring area on page 272 of the 1860 census with her parents and several brothers and sisters. John and Marietta had been childhood friends and later were married as husband and wife. After being married, they returned to Indiana until about 1883 when they left to head West. (See our Veteran site for more military information concerning John R. Dysard.)
At least the first 2 children were born to John and Marietta on the old Dysard homestead.

In referencing John R.Dysard (Disard as he appears on the SD. BLM records) I found this on site, showing a land purchase date of 06/11/1889 See the US Gen Web site on S. Dakota, Brown Co., Hecla and Portage Township for more information on this family.

They had the following children:
Joseph Dysard b. abt 1870 in Indiana who settled in Grangeville, Idaho - 1900 Census found at Mount Idaho Precinct, Idaho County, Idaho. He married Maggie in 1900 she was born Nov 1879. Joseph d. 7 Jan 1947 with burial in Prairie View Cemetery, Grangeville, Idaho
Children, Beatrice b. about 1900 and Joel b. about 1902

Alice b. about 1872 Indiana (nicknamed Allie) m. Edson C. Dodds and moved to Saranac, MI

Frank b. Oct. 1875 in Indiana of Hecla, SD - only child of John who remained in Hecla. Wife Anna Pfutzenreuter born Norway in July 1879. Arrived with parents in 1884. Daughter of Fred & Lizzie Pfutzenreuter. They had Anna, Francis, Muriel, Beulah and Clyde (Clyde DySard is the written source of much of the documentation I have on this site.)
Fred b. May 1884 in South Dakota moved to Minct, ND as an adult.

5. Frances Dysard (nicknamed Frank) was only 2 in the 1850 census. She married a Jeremiah Ridgeway of LaPorte on 10/19/1874 . For a period of time and in referencing the 1880 Federal Census reports, we see that Jeremiah and Frances went to Gravelly Valley, Lake Co., CA where Jeremiah was keeping hotel and his wife living next door, keeping house. By 1900 they are back living in the city of La Porte. Frances was born in November of 1848 and died after 1930. Jeremiah was born in September of 1835 and he died in January of 1921. They had no children.

6. James T. was 2 months old according to the 1850 census.  James married Marietta Boothe on Feb 22, 1875. He was born in March of 1850 and he died June 13, 1921 at the age of 71. Marietta Boothe Dysard died. Eight Square Cemetery just across the line in Porter County shows - ( Row 9 - Dysard, Addie M. 21y, 6m, 1 d. died 4/27/1828. (another list shows April 27, 1878) Wife of James T.) This would be consistant with the fact that she would be buried close to her own family.
In 1880 James appears living with his sisters family (Walter O Leeds household) in Michigan City. James T. Dysard and appears as a widower. Then he married Florence. They had 8 children of which 6 girls and one boy survived to adulthood. Florence was born February 1860 and she died November 8, 1916. James would die in June 13, 1921 at the age of 71.
Mamie or Marie b. Apr 1887         
Aubrey L b. Jan 1890 and d. 09/13/1909
Addie b. Mar of 1894
Esther H. b. July 1896.
Florence b. July 1899

7. Alexander Dysard was b. July 1852 shows as being 18 in the 1870 census for LaPorte County portion. Mary Catherine Schultz daughter of "Henry and Mary (Baumeister) Schultz" became his wife on 12 May 1880. Alexander and Mary (Schultz) Dysard had 3 girls and one boy that survived to adulthood. He died October 13, 1936 .Burial in Greenwood.

Alexander Dysard occupation was that of a farmer and he still appears on the old homestead as late as 1892 on the Coolspring maps. Mary was born 18 May 1862 and died April 20, 1940 at the age of 77 years old. They had 3 girls and one boy. (Six children in total but only 4 lived to any maturity.) Alexander Dysard lived for a period of time, after selling the farm on Wozniak Road in Coolspring township, at 808 Manhattan Street and 213 1/2 Green Street in Michigan City.

  1. Marie Dysard - b. 1881 d. 5 Aug 1882 at 11 months old, burial in Greenwood Cemetery.
  2. Henry A. lived only 2 days.d. May 2, 1883 - Greenwood burial
  3. Grace Matilda b. May 1885 m. (Source 9)Herman Hibner 28 Nov 1907 . She died 15 Mar 1920 and he died 20 Jan 1952 both buried in Greenwood. They had two children. Marion who married a mechanic and Marshall who was a musician & played with a symphony orchestra.
  4. Harry Henry b. 10 Mar 1888 d. 28 Oct 1957. Harry married Gertrude Kunkel on the 29 of November in 1911 and she died May 12, 1917 at the age of only 28 years.He later married Mary M. Wing and she died 2 May 1974 at the age of 77. All three are buried in Greenwood Cemetery. Harry lived at 1116 Buffalo St., Michigan City, IN.
  5. Frances Etta b. May 1890 or May 4, 1891 (source 8) and died 1954 in Portland Oregon. She is buried at Lincoln Memorial Park, Portland Oregon. She married Royal Adelbert Wellwood (see Ephriam Wellwood biography). She then married ? Lepel, then Oliver Eifler and finally Maurice (Smitty) Smith (See Source 8) Also cause of death ws complications of diabetes. She had diabetes from young adulthood and took insulin for this condition. At the age of 50, Frances became very hard of hearing.
See Royal Wellwood under Wellwood biography for this couple's children and info.
  6. Harriet A. b. December 27, 1900 in Michigan City, IN married Clarence R. Moldenhauer on Sep 3, 1920. Clarence died 16 Jan 1966 and is buried in Greenwood Cemetery. Harriet died October 1957 - buried in Greenwood. Harriet & Clarence had two children; Virginia and Robert who died relatively young.

See Greenwood Cemetery for many of these burials.

8. Joseph W. Dysard b. January 1856 he shows as being age 16 in the 1870 census. Then the 1880 shows Joseph living with his brother Alexander and Mary. He married Ida B. Edinger in Boone Grove, Porter County 14th November 1889 . She was b. in about March of 1873. The 1900 census shows us that Ida has given birth to 5 children of which 4 are surviving. They are living in Pleasant Township.
Offeb T, b.Feb 1891, (name difficult to read on census)
Stanley A. b. June 1893, Home in 1930: Lake Valley, Sierra, New Mexico , SS Death index shows Stanley Dysard
  b, 24 June 1893 and died 1 Dec 1981 Michigan City, La Porte, IN
Milton J, July 1896,
Russell A b. 11 Feb. 1900 and died Oct 1977 Carthage, Jasper, MO so states SS Death Index.
Esther Lucinda Dysard b.11-27-1903 married Clarence Wilson 10-6-1928, and died 5-22-1998.

  Joseph and Ida are both buried in Greenwood Cemetery. Joseph is shown incorrectly as John W. Dysard. He was 58 and died December 30, 1914. Ida lived several decades past her husband and would die at the age of 86 on June 14, 1958.
Could the reading in Eight Square Cemetery in Porter County be the 5th child? Row 14 Dysard, Chester L. b 5/28/1906 died 2/5/1907, Son of J.W. & G.A. Only more investigation by interested family members may shed some light on this mystery.

Additional note on Lorraine Dysard, Great Great granddaughter of John & Esther Dysard changed the spelling to DySard to make the "S: a capital. She told her nephew Harrison DySard that she got tired of having people think her last name was Dipard which is what it looks like if you write it out.

Generations who remained in LaPorte County Indiana

Stanley Dysard, who lived at 438 Johnson Road, Michigan City, wrote quite a letter to Clyde Dysard on Dec 28, 1976. Much of the information and guidance taken for the above, was in reference and assisted by his letter. Those seeking further information should contact me, Deanna West on this family. Stanley has now passed away too and is also buried in Greenwood. To insure Internet security and avoid identity theft, please contact me for ancestors that may have been born in the early 1900's.

Some of the sources used in this piece.
Source 1: Letter from Esther DySard Wilson (niece of John DySard) letter dated Dec 28, 1976
Source 2: Dysard History (as I Recall) by Clyde Dysard. Recollections of his father John Dysard who was the son of John and Esther Dysard of LaPorte.
Source 3: Civil War documentation for John R. Dysard
Source 4: Federal Census Reports
Source 5: Obituaries contributed by Harrison DySard
Source 6. Indiana Marriages - Marriage Records Volume II 1850 to 1920 Compiled by Ind. Works Prog. Admin. 1939 Source 7. Greenwood Cemetery Records viewed at 7. Green Wood Cemetery Records 8. Family records and documentation of Paula Connolly
Source 9. Index to Marriage Recs Letters D - H Volume II 1850 To 1920 -Indiana Works Progress Administration 1939

Return to LaPorte County Indiana Biographies