Laurel Volkenant
History 346
Section 2


The Hibbard family began in Minnesota when, in 1871, Horatio and Drusilla came to Haven Township in Sherburne County. The whole story does not really start there however, for Drusilla (Grimes) came from Sharon, Vermont where her mother was a Bixby (before marriage) and a descendent of Robert Bixby who came over on a ship from England in 1635.

Horatio, growing up in New Hampshire, decided at the age of seventeen that he wanted to see a big city. Instead of going to Boston or New York City, He headed north in May of 1834 with only a rifle and blanket. He followed Lake Champlain and ended up in Montreal, Canada. That fall, in October, he returned to New Hampshire.

After his marriage to Drusilla Grimes, he settled in St. Lawrence County, New York. It was in this home that five children-three girls and two boys-Hermon and Howard-were born to them. In 1861, during the Civil War, the whole family moved to Franklin County, New York.

An interesting story was retold about Mrs. Hibbard during the war. Of English descent, Drusilla loved tea but due to the war, none was to be obtained in the states, so she sent her two sons out to walk twenty miles into Canada to purchase her tea.

Horiatio was a hard worker as he not only had a farm but also maintained a job at a nearby sawmill. Drusilla, an outstanding women , is reported to have been the brains of the family as she saved all her husband's wages through thrifty management of the family farm. When her young sons needed a fishline, she would braid them from horse hair from the horses's tail. The Hibbard's also had two hundred maple trees which furnished them amply with sugar.

[Horatio Hibbard - Drusilla Grimes family tree] inserted here

In 1871, Horatio, Drusilla, and Howard Hibbard rented two box cars and came with their belongings to St. Cloud (The railroad was completed to St. Cloud in 1866) where they bought one hundred forty acres in Haven Township (presently the Mike Hartman farm). They stayed for many years until the home burned. A married daughter and her husband came from the east and built a new home for them where they stayed until they died.

In 1876, Howard was married to Roseanne Doran. They stayed with Horatio and Drusilla until 1881 when their new home was completed. It was on four hundred acres in section ten of Haven Township (present Howard Hibbard II farm and Municipal Airport). They settled into their new home with Harry, age four and Marion, age two. Soon after Hugh was born. Elenor arrived in 1883 and Jess on August 16, 1893.

Howard and Roseanne stayed on the farm until the fall of 1906 when they purchased land in town and built the house now standing next ot Coborns(west). Jess stayed on that year along with a hired man to help Hugh with the farm. Hugh was married June 18, 1907 to Emma Gaumnitz and took over the farm.

Taken from the "History of the Upper Mississippi Valley": Minnesota Historical Society, 1881, Minneapolis, Minnesota.

Howard Hibbard was born in St. Lawrence County, New York, on the 28th of November 1854. When he was seven years old, the family moved to Franklin County, and in the spring of 1871, to Minnesota, first settling in the southern part of this township (Haven), but the following year re-moved to their present farm. In the spring of 1881, the subject of our sketch left the parental roof, and settled on a farm of his own which he had previously purchased. He was married on the 5th of November 1876, to Miss Roseanne Doran. They have been blessed with five children.

Herman A. Hibbard is a native of St. Lawrence County, New York, and was born on the 3rd of September, 1848. In 1861, the family removed to Franklin County, and six years later, the subject of our sketch left home at age 19, and went to New Hampshire, residing in that state and Vermont for two years. He came west in 1869, and after a short stay in Iowa, came to Minnesota, and was engaged in agricultural pursuits in Sherburne County until 1876. Then bought a farm in Benton County. Mr. Hibbard was married on the 4th of July, 1876, to Miss Angie Starkey. They have three children.

[Howard Hibbard - Roseanne Doran family tree] inserted

[Sherburne County map] inserted

The Dorans originated in Ireland. Roseanne's father, Hugh came from Kildare and her mother, Margarett Gather from County Clair.

As a boy in Ireland, Hugh possessed an intense love from music, especially the bagpipes. His parents thought this was a waste of time so he was forced to sneak out of the house after all were asleep to take music lessons twice a week. His kind instructor was so overwhelmed with his talent that he gave the lad lessons for free. Hugh, born in 1820, (married in 1842, and died in 1888) believed to have come to Americal in the 1830's.

Hugh and his wife Margarett lived in Havre de Grace, Maryland where he owned a grocery store, was a deputy sheriff, a minor politician, and of course, played the bagpipes. The Dorans had five little girls (Roseanne wqs the middle child). She can remember as a young child, that her mother had two Black girls to help with the house and the children but Roseanne didn't know if they were slaves or hired girls (early 1860's). In 1867, Margarett Doran died. An uncle and aunt, Hugh and Margarett Mullegan adopted Rose. She never saw her sisters again.

The Mullegans were truly adventurous and courageous. Margarette, (age 17) while working as a maid in the Philadelphia hotel, discovered a pair of man's feet sticking out from under her bed. Not one to become rattled, she shook out her rug before retiring and conveniently dropped it out the window, thus giving her an excuse to go downstairs to secure a policeman to apprehend the intruder.

Hugh and Margarette, with Rose, took a ship from Philadelphia to Central America where they went on a three day journey by mule train across to the Pacific. There they took another ship to San Francisco.

[Dorans family tree] inserted

They spent two years in California and one in Oregon. At one time they worked on a ranch with Mrs. Mulligan cooking for the cow ranchers.

When the transcontinental railroad was completed, the Mulligans and Rose took the third one to Omaha and from there went to St. Paul. For three years (1869-1872) they lived in the Rosemont area. Rose could remember sledding three miles to church in Inver grove through a great forest.

In 1872, they again moved to an abandoned trappers cabin in Clear Lake (now owned by Bob Haaf). Shortly after they bought the farm, now occupied by Kermit Kosak. At age nineteen, Roseanne Doran married Howard Hibbard in 1876.

After Jess Hibbard finished the eith grade at the country school located one-half mile down the road, he joined his parents, Howard and Rose in town. He attended the Union School (now Central) and graduated in 1912 in a class of thirty seniors. The population of St. Cloud was about 8,000 at the time.

He attended the normal school (later named St. Cloud Teacher's College) for two years and then transferred to the University of Minnesota where he spent three years, graduating in 1917. That year he came back to the farm and started building south of the home his parents had built. On September 2, 1918, he married Miss Edna Westphal from St. Paul. They met while playing tennis at the University. He was immediately drafted into the army and sent to the Mexican-United States border and stationed at Camp Cody. The government had one thousand troops down there as Germany was urging Mexico to take back the lands of Texas, California, New Mexico and Arizona. Edna Hibbard stayed with her parents in St. Paul during this time.

In the spring of 1919 Jess returned to St. Cloud where he and his wife finished their home and planting. When the house was first built it stood in the middle of a former oat field. The Hibbards planted it with lilacs, trees, shrubs and flowers, that now it is lush with vegetation.

[JE Hibbard and Edna Westphal family tree] inserted

The Westphals

Edna Hibbard's father, J.W. Westphal was born in Germany. He came with his father, a school teacher , to America, to homestead a farm near Rockford, Minnesota in 1863. J.W. was one of ten boys and two girls. The family was said to have lived off the country, growing and hunting as best they could.

J.W. became a preacher and taught in a theological school in Illinois for a few years. In 1878 he married Ella Wittmer (born1862). She came from Alsace-Lorraine with her parent when young.

The Westphals had four children, Arthur, Gladys, Edna, and Florence. J.W. passed away in 1935 and Ella died at the J. E. Hibbard farm in 1954

[Westphal-Wittmer family tree] inserted

J.E. Hibbard has farmed from the spring of 1919 to the present and has every intention of continuing. He and Edna were blessed with three children: Sylvia, July 19, 1919; Patricia, August31, 1922, and Edmund, October 13, 1926.

Mrs. Hibbard was active in the Ladies Aux. of the American legion and served as one of their presidents. She also taught Sunday school at the Presbyterian Church and belonged to the St. Cloud Garden Club. She died at the J.E. Hibbard Farm on January 9, 1960 from cancer.

J.E. went to Elk River in 1954 to be on the County Committee of ASCA. He served as chairman for eight of the nine years until he retired at the age of seventy in 1963. He has traveled quite extensively during his life, visiting forty-five out of the fifty states, including Hawaii. In this hemisphere he has traveled as far north as Churchhill and as far south as Jamaica. He also took a Mediterranean cruise, visiting such countries as Italy, Sicily, France and the Madeira Islands.

The home of Jess and Edna has sent three generations of Hibbards off to war and also welcomed them back, J.E. in the First World War, Edmund in the Second World War and Keith Hibbard to the Vietnam War. It has also been the sight of two beautiful Hibbard weddings. Mel Volkenant married Patricia Hibbard there on June 12, 1943 and Keith Hibbard married Linda Cota there on May 29, 1971.

The Hibbards have also had three generations attend the college in St. Cloud. J.E. attended the normal school, Edmund and Patricia graduated from St. Cloud Teachers College, and Laurel Volkenant will graduate from St. Cloud State College in 1972.

This summer the Hibbards will celebrate the one hundredth anniversary of the Hibbards residense in St. Cloud.

[Sylvia Hibbard-Vernon Erickson family tree] inserted

[Patricia Hibbard-Mel Volkenant family tree] inserted

[Edmund Hibbard-Virginia Smith family tree] inserted

[6 generations of Hibbard in St. Cloud family tree] inserted


History of the Upper Mississippi Valley: Minnesota Historical Society 1881, Minneapolis, Minnesota.

The Birth Memorial Day Book, belonging to Mrs. Edna Westphal Hibbard

The Memorial Book of J.W. Westphal

J.E. Hibbard supplied most of the information in this paper. Much of it he obtained from Claud Hibbard, a distant cousin, at Michegan and some from visiting graveyards. His mother, Rose told him quite a bit and his momory has carefully made note of all his experiences.