Letter: Are you a Benton?

By on May 27, 2010

On June 13, Kaneville is hosting the Firemen’s Breakfast and Historical Society’s open house.

Both the Farley house and the Benton house will be open to tour. This year, the historical society is featuring the Miner family and the Benton family.

Gilbert and Jemima (Seavey) Benton settled in Kaneville in 1843. Through the long covered wagon ride from New York, Jemima sat upon her rocking chair. They established a homestead south of Kaneville and began farming.

Gilbert died in 1860, so Jemima, with the help of her son Simeon and two youngest sons, continued to farm the land. Jemima lived to be almost 99 years old.

While the Benton name is no longer a common one in this area, there are still many Benton family members around. So far, the genealogy search for descendants of Gilbert and Jemima (Seavey) Benton has located over 600 descendants. You might be a Benton if your ancestor’s names are: Bastian, McNair, Reynolds, Bloss, Meredith, Sheldon, Davis, Myers, Smith, Edwards, Needham, Snow, Gregory, Nichols, Underwood, Keieleber, Nickels, Wilson, Lakin, Raymond and Warne.

There are many more family names, so if you don’t see an ancestor’s name that looks familiar, you still might be a cousin. If you are not sure if you are related, we will have a searchable database to see if we can link you to the family.

We would like to have a Benton family gathering to meet and greet as many cousins as we can. We also need to update the family tree. The last extensive updating was done about 30 years ago.

If you have any Benton memorabilia, data or pictures to share, we would love to have you bring them along. This would be a great time to tour Gilbert and Jemima’s house and see some of the family items. We will be taking a family picture at the Benton house in Kaneville at noon.

We hope to get as many family members together as possible, so we hope to see you there.

Martha Baldridge
Kaneville Historical Society