Mullett Family papers: 1665-1924 (bulk 1825-1924)
Summary Information
Title: Mullett Family papers
Creator: Mullett family.
Inclusive dates: 1665-1924
Bulk dates: 1825-1924
Extent: 1 linear foot
Extent: 1 oversize folder
Williamston, Ingham County, Michigan, family. Financial records, clippings, and correspondence relating to Mullett Farm and John Mullett, surveyor; extract, 1864, from Meridian Township Register Book; letterpress book, journal, and correspondence, 1852-1893, of John H. Forster, surveyor, agent for Pewabic Mining Company, Hancock, Mich., and later owner of Springbrook Farm, Ingham County, Michigan; diary, 1840-1841, of Catherine Hall; and map, 1859, of Mullett Farm; and photographs.
Call number: 852069 Aa 2 Ac
Language: The materials are in English.
Repository: Bentley Historical Library
1150 Beal Ave.
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-2113
Phone: 734-764-3482
Fax: 734-936-1333
Home Page:
Finding aid prepared by: Michigan Historical Collections staff

Access and Use
Acquisition Information:

The collection was donated by Mrs. John Husselman, Sr. (donor no. 4770) in 1969 and 1980 and from Mrs. Faith Mullett Ross (donor no. 5940) in 1978.

Access Restrictions:

The collection is open for research.

To protect fragile audiovisual recordings (such as audio cassettes, film reels, and VHS tapes), the Bentley Historical Library has a policy of converting them to digital formats by a professional vendor whenever a researcher requests access. For more information, please see:


Donor(s) have transferred any applicable copyright to the Regents of the University of Michigan but the collection may contain third-party materials for which copyright was not transferred. Patrons are responsible for determining the appropriate use or reuse of materials.

Preferred Citation:

item, folder title, box no., Mullett Family Papers, Bentley Historical Library, University of Michigan


The first member of the Mullett family to settle in Michigan was John Mullett who came to Detroit from Buffalo, New York in 1814. Here he achieved prominence as a surveyor, "helping to layout the city of Detroit and assisting in many of the government's original surveys of Michigan, Wisconsin, Illinois and Indiana." He also did much of the survey work for the plank road between Detroit and Grand Rapids. In 1849, he moved with his family to a farm near Williamston in Ingham County.

John Mullett and his wife had a large family, many of whom are represented in the Mullett family collection. There was Catherine Mullett, who later married B.F. Hall, an Aurora, Illinois banker. The son of B.F. and Catherine Hall was Robert Henry Hall (1837-1914), an 1860 graduate of West Point, who served as an infantry officer in f the Civil War, and then went on as an instructor at the U.S. Military Academy from 1871 to 1878. Hall continued on in the service to the rank of Brigadier General in the Regular Army by the time of his retirement in 1901. One of his last tours of duty was as general officer of volunteers in the Philippines during the Spanish American War.

Another child of John Mullett was Martha Mullett, who later married John Harris Forster. Forster was a mining engineer and agent for two different Upper Peninsula firms. He was responsible for building triangulation stations in the Upper Peninsula. Later he represented Sheldon and Columbian Copper in New York (1863, 1867-1869), Chicago (1867), and Salt Lake City (1869). He spent the last years of his life on a farm in Ingham County.

Other children of John Mullett included Charles F., Marshall C., Henry, and John Harvey Mullett, who, like his father, was a surveyor.

Collection Scope and Content Note

The Mullett family collection contains many useful descriptions of the state, and is a good source of information for some of the state's economic and topographic conditions during the 19th century. The papers, 1825-1936, are broken down into four series.

Subject Terms

This collection is indexed under the following headings in the finding aid database and catalog of The Bentley Historical Library/University of Michigan. Researchers desiring additional information about related topics should search the catalog using these headings.

  • Aurora (Ill.)
  • Copper mines and mining -- Michigan -- Upper Peninsula.
  • Farm life -- Michigan -- Ingham County.
  • Farmers -- Michigan -- Williamston.
  • Hancock (Mich.)
  • Ingham County (Mich.)
  • Meridian (Mich.)
  • Michigan -- Social life and customs -- 1831-1840.
  • Michigan -- Social life and customs -- 1841-1850.
  • Michigan -- Social life and customs -- 19th century.
  • Surveyors -- Michigan.
  • Upper Peninsula (Mich.)
  • Williamston (Mich.)
  • Women -- Illinois -- Aurora.
  • Ann Arbor (Mich.)
  • Ann Arbor (Mich.) -- Churches.
  • Churches -- Michigan -- Ann Arbor.
  • Farms -- Michigan -- Williamston.
  • Fishing -- Michigan.
  • Harbors -- Michigan -- Petoskey -- 1891-1900.
  • Huron River (Oakland County-Monroe County, Mich.)
  • Interiors.
  • Libraries -- Michigan.
  • Nurses.
  • Petoskey (Mich.) -- Harbors -- 1891-1900.
  • Picnics.
  • Railroad bridges.
  • Williamston (Mich.) -- Farms.
  • Diaries.
  • Photographs.
  • Mullett family.
  • Pewabic Mining Company.
  • Barbour Gymnasium (University of Michigan)
  • Foch, Ferdinand, 1851-1929.
  • Mullett, John W., 1825-1902.
  • St. Andrew's Episcopal Church (Ann Arbor, Mich.)
  • University of Michigan. Library.
  • University of Michigan. School of Nursing. Class of 1912.
  • University of Michigan. University Hospital.
  • Williamston High School (Williamston, Mich.). Class of 1889.
  • Forster, John Harris, 1822-1894.
  • Hall, Catherine Mullett, 1817-
  • Mullett, John, 1786-1862.
Contents List
Request materials for use in the Bentley Library
Container / Location Title
John Mullett (and John H. Mullett) [series]

The first series in the collection includes papers of John Mullett, 1825-1864, notably correspondence, surveyor's appointment materials, mortgages, deeds, and receipts. Some of these papers relate to the Mullett farm in Williamston. Because there was some confusion over what were the papers of John Mullett and what were the papers of his son John H. Mullett, it was decided to interfile the papers of father and son. Most of the series seems to be the papers of the son.

Box   1  
Correspondence 1825, 1827
Box   1  
Surveyor appointments and related correspondence (2 folders)
Box   1  
Miscellaneous surveys
Box   1  
Deeds 1847-1924
Box   1  
Mortgages, etc. 1841-1900
Box   1  
Notes, etc. 1839-1885
Box   1  
Household bills and receipts 1836-1863
Property tax bills and receipts
Box   1  
Ingham County 1838-1915
Box   1  
Wayne County 1833-1853
Box   1  
Cass, Jackson, Kent, Ottawa, Shiawassee Counties 1837-1859
Box   1  
Road tax receipts 1825-1861
Box   1  
School tax receipts 1838-1863
Box   1  
List of names from register book for Meridian Township, Ingham County 1864, undated
Box   1  
Miscellanea; include stock certificate, recipe, membership certificate, and Mullett genealogy70
John Harris and Martha Mullett Forster [series]

The second series, the John Harris and Martha Mullett Forster papers, 1840-1891, contain much family correspondence as well as some business correspondence, deeds and essays. Included within this series is a letterpress book written by Harris while an agent for the Pewabic Mining Company, 1860-1862. Considerable correspondence between Forster and his wife is to be found, as the former wrote regularly while working in the Upper Peninsula and on business trips.

Correspondence, business
Box   1  
Box   1  
Box   1  
Correspondence, family
Box   1  
Tattered and incomplete letters
Box   1  
Box   1  
Box   1  
Box   1  
Box   1  
Box   1  
Box   1  
Box   1  
Deeds 1859-1887
Box   1  
Documents, miscellaneous
Box   1  
Letterpress book written as an agent for Pewabic Mining Company, Hancock, Mich. 1860-1862
Box   1  
Farm Journal written at Springbrook Farm, Ingham County 1877-1881
Box   1  
Essays "Our Michigan" and "Narrow Gauge VB. Broad Gauge" 1891
Hall Family [series]

The Hall family papers, 1840-1938, contain correspondence and other materials of Catherine "Kate" Mullett (Mrs. Benjamin F.) Hall, her son, General Robert Henry Hall, while serving in Arizona and Texas, and two of his three sons, Robert F. and Harris Hall, while they were at military prep school from 1886 to 1889. This series also includes some military records relating to Robert H. Hall's career, and a diary written by Catherine from 1840 to 1841.

Catherine "Kate" Mullett Hall
Box   1  
Correspondence 1869-1888
Box   1  
Diary 1840-1841
Box   1  
Robert F. Hall, letter to his cousin, Charles Mullett November 3, 1938
Box   1  
Robert F. and Harris Hall, correspondence to parents while at Tivoli-on-the-Hudson, military prep school 1886-1889
Box   1  
Robert Henry Hall, military records and personal correspondence 1855-1890
Miscellaneous family materials [series]

The last series includes miscellaneous materials, 1832-1924, of family-related individuals, including deeds, journals, poems, and historical sketches. In this group is a letter, dated 1665, committing Thomas Ellwood and other Quakers to jail at Wicomb (Wycombe), Buckinghamshire, copied by Ellwood from an original signed by Ambrose Benet, and a fragment of a document in the handwriting of Quaker leader George Fox.

Box   1  
Sarah Bonine, journal and poems
Bonine family
Box   1  
Newspaper clippings and articles
Box   1  
Correspondence, poetry, and family reunion lists
Box   1  
Clay E. Call family, deeds, etc. 1911-1924
Box   1  
East family, historical sketch 1908
Box   1  
Thomas Ellwood letter , committing Thomas Ellwood and other Quakers to jail at Wicomb (Wycombe), Buckinghamshire 1665

(copied by Ellwood from an original signed by Ambrose Benet, and a fragment of a document in the handwriting of Quaker leader George Fox)

Box   1  
George Fox, letter purportedly written for Ambrok Benet 1665

(addressed to the House of Corrections in Wicomb)

Osborn family
Oversize Folder   1  
Charles, passport 1832
Box   1  
Narcissa, memorial 1836
Box   1  
Miscellanea (2 folders)

(includes genealogy materials and unidentified 1871 letter)

Box   1  
Box   1  
Box   1  
Oversize Folder   1  
Map of Mullett Farm, Ingham County 1859
Oversize Folder   1  
Marriage certificate of James Bonine and Hannah East October 21, 1824