Annice Ann Aldrich was born in the New York State on 18 March 1836 to Edward Aldrich and Alfreda Peak. When she was a young girl her family migrated to Henrietta Township, Jackson County, Michigan and settled on a small tract of land where Edward made a living for his family farming. This farm was near the shores of Batteese Lake, the site of the first permanent settlement in Jackson County. (Today, their farm is part of the well known Gee Farms, the Gees are also cousin of the Aldrich's. http://www.geefarms.com/ ) During this time, Native American's were still able to live in the wilderness of Michigan and young Annice was fascinated by them and talked about what an adventure it would be to live with them. She told her granddaughters the story of how one cold winter's evening a small number of Indians asked if they could cook their meal on the hearth of the Aldrich fireplace and sleep there for warmth during the night. Her parents welcomed them into their cabin home....but as the story goes, Annice was a bit turned off by the food that the Indians prepared and decided that living on the farm was just perfect for her.
Lawrence Hobart McCreery was known as "Hub" and was born in 1 April 1832 in Steuben County, New York to Joseph McCreery and Abigail Collver. This family too migrated to Henrietta Township, a few years after their neighbors the Aldrich's. Hub was an adventurer and in his youth spent some time sailing on the Great Lakes where he learned to tie several types of knots in ropes and also splice ropes together. During the American Civil War, Hub, along with couple of his brothers and two of his brothers-in-law volunteered for the cause of the Union. Hub and his brothers-in-law were all member of the same company of the Michigan Volunteer Mechanics and Engineer Regiment. This regiment was part of the forces in the western theater of the war and later took part in sweeping through the south as part of the "March to the Sea". Their skills were needed to build new rail lines and bridges to supply the large Union Forces on this offensive. One story that has been shared is that his company was marching in one direction while his brothers company was marching in the opposite direction. They apparently recognized the company banners or symbols and started watching for each other. They indeed spotted each other and his brother shouted out, "Hey you ole Hub of the Universe, see you at your house for Christmas." All of the McCreery and Aldrich brothers survived the war and most of them lived within a few miles of each other.