History of the Worden and Thayer Families

Written by Rufus Rypha Worden

To His Son Edward O. Worden

17 May 1905

Worden Family History

Your grandfather and grandmother on your father's side were born in Vermont, but were both raised in Cayuga Co., New York.

Your grandfather Worden had two brothers, Robert and Walter, and two sisters as far as I know, but I don't know the names of the sisters.

All I know of Robert Worden, my uncle, is that he, with your grandfather Rypha Worden, served in the War of 1812-1815.

Walter Worden came to Michigan about 1852 or 1853 and settled in Clinton County abouty 50 or 55 miles north of Wayne County where you were born. I was at his place about 1858; he had several children. I can remember the name of only one - Rufus, same as mine.

One of my father's sisters married a man by the name of Yates. Yates was a merchant in Auburn, N.Y. and raised a large family. One of them was Dick Yates, the civil war governor of Illinois. Another son came to our house in Michigan and married a girl by the name of Hannah Kipp. My other aunt I know nothing of.

My father Rypha settled in Michigan, Wayne County, in 1833, raised a family of nine children: four boys, Alvin, Alfred, Albert, and Rufus; five girls: Eliza, Naome, Almena, Claressa, and Laura.

Eliza, the eldest, married Milo Downer. She died young leaving two children, Simeon and Polly.

Naome married David Wood, who died three or four years ago at the age of ninety. Naome lives with her daughter in Wisconsin, age eighty-seven. They raised a family of boys and girls. I know but little of the children.

Alvin married Margaret Hammond. I remember George, Randall, and Betsy only. Betsy burned to death in Illinois. Alvin went away, they were living at my father's house and we never heard of him again. His wife married again. As far as I know they are all yet in Michigan.

Alfred married Olivia ____. I have forgotten her name. Raised a large family, can remember only one now - John. When we came west, John was studying medicine. What became of the family I don't know, only that Alfred died three years ago age eighty-two.

Almena married Stephen Hammond; died in 1869 in Clinton County, leaving two sons, don't know what became of them nor remember their names.

Albert married Orvella Taylor. She died two years ago. they had two children, Clara - I don't know who she married and Charles. They lived near our old home place.

Claressa married Charles Gunning, both are dead. They raised four children - two girls, Clara and Gene, and two boys, James and Volney. Clara and James are dead. Volney and Gene live on our old farm in Livonia Township, Wayne County where I was raised.

Laura married William Fisher in Illinois, 1852. They had six sons, all now living in South Dakota near Waterton.

Your grandmother's maiden name (my mother) was Ripley. she had, as far as I know, two brothers, James, who when I saw him last, lived in Winnebago County, Illinois, and Whitney who lived at Adrean about 50 miles west of where I was raised. Your grandmother Worden also had a sister, Meribah (my aunt), who married Randall Palmer, who lived a short distance from James Ripley in Illinois. I know nothing of them. James raised five children - three boys - Jonathan, Porter, and William - two girls, Martha and Eliza. Porter married Jane Hammond (your uncle Alvin's wife's sister) and died years ago. Good boy Porter, he was the best swimmer I ever saw and once took me out on Rock River, when if it hadn't been for his help I'd surely been done for. The rest of Uncle's children I know nothing of. I was at Uncle Whitney Ripley's place at Adrain, Michigan, when I was fourteen or fifteen years old. Have known nothing of them since, only through the papers. He went into the store business and has become quite priminant. had several children who no doubt are yet at or in the vicinity of Adrain, Michigan. This I belive is all I can tell you about relatives on the Worden side.

The last I knew of your Uncle Albert Worden, 78, and your Aunt Naoma, 87, were living. One Naoma in Wisconsin and one Albert in Michigan. It's been several weeks since I heard from either of them and it's a short job for people of their age to peg out, so maybe they're alive and maybe they're not.

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