Stanton and McNellis

 Joseph Stead (1782-1842) brought his wife, Mary Ann Hill (1777 - 1840) and their 8 children on the "Ship Criterion" in the Spring of 1820 to join his brother, Benjamin, in Utica, Macomb Co., Michigan.  They were from the Woodhouse Carr area of Leeds, Yorkshire, England.  He was the son of Thomas Stead, a cloth manufacturer in Leeds. 

Thomas Stead (1741-1784) married Mary Wilson November 1766 and had 9 children.  All of them were baptized in the Woodhouse Carr Presbyterian Chapel.  They were: James (bp 1 Sep 1767), Robert (bp 16 May 1769), Sarah (bp 6 Mar 1771), Thomas (bp 20 Jan 1773), Martha (3 Nov 1774), Joseph (b 21 Oct 1776 and died as an infant), Benjamin (b15 Mar 1778, bp 9 Apr 1778, died 25 Sep 1821 in Utica, MI) married Frances Morley of Nottingham (m 19 Apr 1798), Mary (bp 26 Jul 1780, Joseph (bp 6 Oct 1782 - d 27 June 1842)

When Joseph and his family arrived in New York in 1820, they bought a wagon and a pair of horses and traveled to Buffalo.  From there they embarked on the Walk-in-the-Water to cross Lake Erie.  This was the first steamboat on Lake Erie.  They arrived in Detroit in the early summer of 1820. 

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    Joseph Stead was tall and slim, being about five feet and eleven inches in height, well proportioned, with a light complexion and brown hair and blue eyes.   He had a rather aristocratic and dignified manner and was a trifle pompous.  He was an honorable man and a good citizen.  He was married in England to Mary Anna Hill, whose father was a teacher in a private school.  She inherited an annuity of $200 a year.

    In an advertisement in the Detroit Gazette of May 31, 1825, Bain & Gagnier Tailors advertised that Joseph Stead, son of Joseph, was apprenticed to them in the tailoring business and had run away.  In close proximity to the advertisement was another signed by Joseph Stead who said that his son, Joseph, had never been apprenticed to Bain & Gagnier, but had worked for them by a stated price and without any restrictions.  It also stated that he was perfectly satisfied with his son's reason for leaving their employment.


    Joseph inherited farm land from his brother, Benjamin, and bought more land adjacent to it.  As a farmer, he did very little work but was active in superintending the labor done on his property and was quite prominent in the little settlement.  He was appointed Justice of the Peace by Governor Cass and confirmed by the fourth legislative counsel on 11 Aug 1830.  He continued in this office until Michigan became a state in 1837.

    Old residents of Utica and members of the Stead family remember him as clean shaven and wearing a tall hat, ruffled shirt and black stock, like all men of social consideration at that time.  He never hunted, although the bears would sometimes come into his barnyard and kill his chickens.  He was quiet and a skillful gardener.  He always wore a morning gown around his home in the early part of the day, but was always in grand garment when he went into the village.

    Joseph Stead died at his home in Utica on 27 June 1842 at the age of 60.  The house was occupied by his grandson, Benjamin Stead, for awhile.  His wife preceded him to the grave in 1840 at the age of 63.  In the graveyard of Utica there now rests about 35 Steads who are all descendants.



  • George Francis Stead, (19 Mar 1806 - 12 Jun 1882) became a carpenter and builder.  He moved from his home in Utica to New York and later settled in Buffalo where he married Sarah (b 1825, Buffalo, NY d Sept 1827, Sterling, Macomb Co, MI).  He came with his bride to the home of his parents in Utica.  Here his wife contracted a severe cold and died a week after they arrived.  He was married again, 16 Mar 1833, to Nancy Scott (b 10 Oct 1814, Ontario, Canada - d 20 Aug 1870, Sterling, Macomb Co, MI) and they had four children. He inherited his mother's annuity of $200 in 1841, which he disposed of in England for a lump sum which he divided among his siblings.  After Nancy died, he married his brother, Thomas's widow, Amanda Allen.
  • Joseph Stead, as mentioned above,  learned the tailoring trade in Detroit.  He then moved to New York City, then Buffalo where he worked at his vocation.  In Buffalo, he was on the eve of marriage when he died at the age of 36 (in 1842).
  • Henry J Stead lived on  the parental farm until he was of age.  He purchased a farm at Plumb Brook three miles from Utica and was building a house on it to be occupied by himself and his promised wife but died on 11 August 1835 at the age of 27.
  • Thomas Stead was reared in Utica and bought a farm adjoining that purchased by Henry.  He married Amanda Allen, daughter of Dr Allen and lived on his farm until he died in 1867. 

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Children of Thomas Stead: Samuel, Will, Joseph, Alfred Stead
Louisa & Mary Ann) Left to Right.

  • Frederick Stead died on the Cass Farm in Detroit of fever on 1 August 1821 at the age of 10.
  • Caroline Stead died on the Cass Farm in Detroit on the same day as Frederick at the age of 8.
  • John Stead worked on his father's farm in Utica and married Mary Brabb, a native of Yorkshire, in 1840.  He inherited a portion of his father's farm and died on it 1 August 1878.



  • Henry (b abt 1839, Sterling, Macomb Co., MI)

  • Charles Stead married Laura M Ober abt 1863 (5 July 1842 - 4 June 1905)  Her parents were Peter and Jane Ober from New York. Charles Stead enlisted in Co H, 2nd Cavalry, 7 Sept 1861 at Utica for 3 years at age 21.  Mustered out 2 Oct 1861. ("Michigan Volunteers, 1861-65")  See photo on Ober page.

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Charles Stead (1840-1870)
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        Irvin (1 Oct 1864, Derren Twp, Oxford Co, Canada -died 1921) Married Ellen Minerva Price, 7 Apr 1891, Fulton, MI. Children: Hazel Edith, Howard, Virgil. Irvin was born in Canada and moved with his parents back to MI in 1865.
        Egbert (abt 1866 - 1870/80)
        Arthur (b 3 Mar 1867 Macomb Co, MI)  Married Mary "Mattie" Jane Burnett, 4 April 1889. (d 26 December 1913, Maple Rapids, MI.)  Arthur and Mattie are pictured below.
        Elmer (July, 1869-1943) married Jennie Simms. Children: Charles

  • George Jr.
            Children: Clarence, Albert, Fred,  and a fourth died in infancy
  • Nancy (b 1845 - ) Married Bickford Hutchinson and relocated to Los Angeles.        One daughter: Alice (Glass), b 1864.


Stead Photos

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Elmer, Arthur and Irving Stead
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Arthur & Mattie Jane on the left
and Irvin & Ellen on the right.
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Ellen Price Stead, Alice Price Stead, Irvin Stead, Arthur Stead and Hazel
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Stead Family Related Links:

Stead Name Study
Macomb County, Michigan
Map of Yorkshire

Please email me if you have any additional information on the Stead family.