Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
Grant Wilson, John Fiske and Stanley L. Klos. Six volumes, New York: D. Appleton
and Company, 1887-1889 and 1999. Virtualology.com warns that these 19th Century
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FARMER, John, cartographer, born in Half Moon, Saratoga County, New York, 9 February 1798; died in Detroit, Michigan, 24 March 1859. He was educated in the vicinity of Albany, New York, and taught a Lancastrian school in that City. By invitation of Governor Cass and the trustees of the University of Michigan, he removed to that state in 1821, and, after teaching for a time, engaged in surveying and drew the first published map of Michigan. In 1825 he issued one on his own account, and afterward published twelve different maps of Michigan, Wisconsin, Lake Superior, and Detroit, most of which he engraved. In 1831 he compiled and drew for the governor and judges of the state the first and only map of Detroit, transmitted by them to congress. It was accepted by that body as authoritative, and was reproduced among the American state papers.
His early maps are conceded to have been largely influential in promoting the extensive emigration to Michigan that occurred between 1825 and 1840. During his residence in Detroit, Mr. Farmer filled many important City offices. Before leaving A1ban); he published the first "Gazetteer of Michigan " (1830).
His son, Silas Farmer, publisher, born in Detroit, Michigan, 6 June 1839, was brought up to his father's business, and continued the publication of maps. In 1.882 he was chosen historiographer of the City of Detroit. Mr. Farmer claims to have been the first to suggest in print the summer gatherings that have resulted in the Chautauqua, New York, movement, and he is also the founder of the Young Men's Christian association of Detroit. He has issued a series of religious tracts under the titles of the "Royal Railroad" and " The Truth Teller," of which several large editions have been printed. He has published a " History of Detroit and Michigan" (1884; 2d ed., 1887).
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