I believe you have referenced the correct family of Jonathan Paul and I will indicate whatever corrections I can, but most of what I have is online publically at Ancestry.com at this time or posted for queries or with FamilySearch.com.
The correct spelling is William "Willis" Pearce.His son, Col. William Willis Pearce, Jr., was the first of the family to enter land in Decatur Co.Clarinda, his sister, and her husband William Paul had title to the ne quarter of Section 34, Adams Twp., Decatur Co., IN, just north of her brother Col. Pearce's 1/4 section.I believe the father, Jonathan Paul, had entered a lot of land and gave this to his son, William.Jonathan Paul (wife, Eunice) entered land all around that area including in what became Rush Co.He entered the land along the Shelby Co., line that is where St. Paul is located and gave it to his son, John.(Do you think he, Jonathan's brother, could be the John P. Paul married to Eunice Abell?)
Jonathan Paul expired 1834-36.The land he gave to his son, John Paul experienced a lot of flooding of Mill Creek in the early 1840s, esp. 1843, there was also much death from disease and otherwise in that period.John Paul had a number of mills there that were destroyed then.Then he and others evidently went to the railroad that was building a line northwest through St. Omer and offered them a route through his land, just before they were to seal the deal, and promised if they would change routing at the last minute he would build a town for the rail stop, as I understood it, which he did.St. Paul was one of the few towns in America that had the rail line run down the Main St. because there was so little space to build the line and the town.In that way John Paul got out of the area and I don't know what happened to him afterward, but it was the death knell for all those farmers planning to prosper by having a rail line parallel to the Michigan Road through St. Omer.I expect there was bitterness.
I do not know when William Paul died, but my surmise is that Clarinda Pearce Paul must have moved in with a daughter in Greensburg, or she and her husband sold out and they all went to Greensburg and later died.Her daughter Mary Jane Paul, a single woman, died in a rooming house in Greensburg.She was my clue for a long time.Incidentally her last outing was to a camp meeting; she was ill, returned home, and eventually expired in her bed.
I have read that Jonathan Paul's father or brother "platted" Madison, IN so your info. makes sense.Evidently you are identifying the brother as Col. John Paul?I would be inclined to believe the background you have on the father bringing 200 people downriver and so forth because I have long harbored the belief that the brother, John, and Jonathan, in any event, were well established in organization and community development to have engaged in such broad migration accomplishment at this pioneer time.I have come across the surname "Paul" in Ontario County in censuses along with my Pearces but was not clear if it came from this same family and would not jump to the conclusion. Also, Isaac Avery reportedly led a wagon train of settlers to, and was a leader in the development of, Aurora, NY at Lake Seneca.He migrated to Shelby Co., IN where Isaac left about 1000 acres of land to his family.This is one of my families and they owned land in this discussed settlement area.
I am not related to the Pauls; it is that my gg grandfather, Col. Pearce, Jr., was a brother to Clarinda.Colville Pearce was another brother, and he ended up owning land adjacent to St. Paul on the southwest in Shelby Co.Several other brothers migrated to other places, and a couple of them remained in Ohio where their father first stopped though his older son had preceded him.
In the settlement period it was thought Decatur County's north boundary would be farther north than it is now and that St. Omer had a chance to become the county seat and this area was the first settled of Decatur I have gleaned from my research.Through politics, the Rush County line was lowered (Rush Co. given more land) and that took some of the family relations, such as Simon Jacobus' brother, John, into the southern tier of Orange Twp., Rush Co.It left St. Omer too far northwest to be considered a sensible site for the county seat, though much of Decatur Co. was not settled for about 8-10 years after the first pioneers arrived in 1820.Politics!St. Omer was an old Indian meeting ground, already flattened, etc.I have never heard of a change in the boundary between Bartholomew and Decatur Cos., but not to say.I have collateral families that settled between Milroy and Haw Creek Twp., Bart. Co., so I believe I might have heard of it.
I did not have in my notes that Eunice's last name was Griffin, but I know there were Griffins in the area and my family knew Griffins as long as they were in Indiana.I have information on the Griffins from someone who shared it with me a couple of years ago and can send it via email if you like.One of the earliest settlers was John Griffin, who with Arthur Major, platted St. Omer.
As to the Griffins, a researcher provided me some information a couple of years ago on the settler John Griffin:
1. History Of Decatur County- (Hardings-1915- page 102) St. Omer is located in Sec 2 ,Adams Twp, first appeared in 1834 ,when it was laid out by John Griffin and A. Major .
2. History Of Decatur Co ( Harding’s 1915, page 99 )- Arthur Major owned a store2 or 3 miles below present St. Paul.
3. 1820 Indiana Census- only John griffin was in Dearborn County, - 1-male under 10, 2- males between-10-15-, 2 males between-16-25,1male- 46 & over
3 females-under 10, 1 female-10-15, 1 female-16-25, 1 female-26-44, and I female- 45 & over
4. 1830 Decatur County census- Jonathan Griffin, age 40-50 and one female 30-40, there are 3 other John Griffin in Indiana 1830 census, listed in DelawareCo, Fayette Co, and in Washington County.
5. and 6. 1840 Decatur County- John Griffin- 1 male under 5,1 male -20—30- (John),I female- 15-20, other Griffin names in Decatur County are, Charles,(30-40) David,(2-Males-15-20 and 1 Male-(60-70) ,James((20-30)and William- (20-30)
7.-9.in 1850 census of Decatur County- no John Griffin listed, but a Jonathan Griffey age 60 ,born in NJ ,living in Milford, with wife Maria age 50,Born PA.
In St. Omer area there areGriffin listed -Alvira age 7, born Ind., Amanda, age 11, Ind, Charles ,age 41,Born VT, Harriet, age 36,born KY, Josephine, age 2, Born-Ind, and Leander Griffin, age 5, born Ind, Minerva, age 13, Born Ind, and finally Nelson, age 9, born Ind,all other Griffin listed are in Jackson twp and Washington Twp of Decatur County.
You are indicating that many relatives of Michael Paul appear on records in KY and may have remained there?I have researched many families that trekked west down the Ohio either stopping in the Maysville area waiting to access land in Ohio or Indiana, or just staying in KY. Some came into IN when all the land available was designated Knox Co. (the southern portion of all Indiana).
I am copying this message to a colleague as to the Friends.I have read about the founding of the Friends organization in Ontario Co., shortly before my Pearces migrated there from Sussex Co., NJ.The woman who started that religious order was from Rhode Island.It is likely my Pearces trace back to LI and then to RI and-or MA.I have not placed any of my members with her group but they were all neighbors around Benton (Yates carved out of the Ontario Co.), NY.
In my research on Knox Co., IN (History of Knox and Daviess Counties (Goodspeed Pub. Co. 1886 [Vincennes Historical and Antiquarian Soc. Pub. No. 23 1989]) I have read about the religious orders investing in the areas and I recall reading about Hope.It would be extremely interesting to me to learn if you are saying that (1) the Society of Friends out of Benton, Ontario Co., NY, provided members who were part of Michael Paul's migration train down the Ohio River, and (2) from the population of that group were those who developed the religious community of Hope.Hamilton Co., OH has produced a lot of history related to these migrating religious groups as well and they crossed back and forth in and around Swizerland Co., IN as well during the early pioneer period.
At this point I would indicate to you that I host a yahoogroup titled Instomer@yahoogroups.com which deals with the New Yorkers and New Jerseyites who migrated to settle the tricounty area of nw Decatur, sw Rush and east Shelby Co., IN in about 1820.It's purpose is to pool information.
I have Clarinda and William Paul having the following children:
Sarah A. Paul (1828-1902 m. Ed Hollensbe, I have just learned details of this family).I have not tried to pull an obit from the Greensburg paper on microfilm since learning of her DOD, which might answer some questions.I think she was Ed Hollensbe's second wife; his first spouse, Sarah Osborn, produced 12 children by the time she died in 1859.)He had Elmore and Nellie with Sarah Paul.
Mary Jane Paul (1829 or 1830 to 1883, single female)
Caroline (b. 1832 - nothing more learned)
Eunice G. (Griffin?)Foster (abt 1834 to 1895 or 1907, m. John Foster).I have the surname Weyr as possibly that of a spouse of her's or even Sarah's - unconfirmed.
Pvt. Wm. Willis (or Pearce, given both ways) Paul (abt 1843 - abt 1863).This is what I have on him:William W. Paul served in Co. G., the 7th Indiana Infantry.This company may have served at Chalk Hill, Battle of Gettysburg, and this should be checked.It reportedly served in a number of well documented battles.It was a full term war regiment.He had served two years, 11 months on his death.One month after he expired his regiment released its original volunteers and melded any remaining into the 19th Regiment.
Pvt. Wm. W. Paul was captured at Yellow House (Confederate name for battle at Richmond, VA) and expired "not of disease" at Andersonville Prison, a day or two before Union train came to pick up Union soldiers in agreed upon exchange for Confederates.In those final days many Union soldiers were allowed to die of thirst and starvation at Andersonville.A river ran by it....a boundary of the prison camp, and prisoners were allowed to dip their hands in the water and when caught at it this act was treated as an identification some Confederate guards used to claim an effort to escape and some of the Union Soldiers were shot on the spot.A dark spot on the Nation's history.
That is all I have except for notes on Knox Co..I will try to learn more from other sources on Michael Paul's wife, Sarah, coming out of the Friends, as that introduces that whole history again from Ontario Co. into this tri-county area of Indiana.
You may contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or via Instomer@yahoogroups.com, to which I hope you will consider subscribing.