Ruggles Spooner also responded to the call of the Pioneer Magnet (Big Rapids, Mecosta County, Michigan) from Thursday May 9, 1878.
Statement of Ruggles Spooner (Found on Page 1 Column 2)
I have lived in the township of Big Rapids - three miles west of the city - fifteen years. Have 160 acres of land; about 60 improved. Soil is varied; clay loam and sand. Timber, maple beech, elm, and basswood, with an occasional white ash. My hay has averaged about one and a half tons per acre. Wheat has yielded from ten to thirty-six bushels, and corn from twenty-five to thirty-five bushels per acre. Potatoes from 150 to 350 bushels per acre. Oats from twenty to fifty, and peas from fifteen to thirty bushels per acre. Raised my apple trees from the seed. Have an orchard of about 125 trees. Think them much better than those brought in by nurserymen. Good prospect for an excellent crop this year. Plums have done very well for me, and so have the small fruits. Have taken the Pioneer and the Pioneer-Magnet fifteen years.Dated May, 1878 - R. Spooner
He seems very proud of his apple orchard! I have read that apple seeds never produce the same apples as the tree that produced them. So if you planted a seed from a Golden Delicious apple, the tree that results would be a totally different apple. I just wonder what kind of apples old farmer Spooner was growing?
Here is the 1880 census for Ruggles Spooner in Big Rapids Township, Mecosta County, Michigan. He has three adult sons living with him. I'll bet the work never stopped.
There is not much online about this family. I clipped the Big Rapids Township section from the Atlas of Mecosta County dated 1879. You can see the farm listed as Ruggles Spooner and sons.