We believe that Charles was born in Queensbury, Warren County, New York. We also believe that his father was Asa Ripley, Junior who was born March 26, 1784 in Washington County, New York. If we are correct about the parents of Charles, then they were still alive in 1829, when they signed legal documents with their X's, in Galen, Wayne County, New York. After 1829 we could not find either Asa Jr., or his wife Elizabeth.
The first record we have found so far that names Charles, is in Cuyahoga County, Ohio in which the city of Cleveland is found. On December 28th, 1834, Charles Ripley married Diana Walroth, after obtaining a license from the Clerk of the Court of Common Pleas. They were married by William Burton, Justice of the Peace. This William Burton was living in Brooklyn of Cuyahoga County in 1840, near Cleveland. Charles would have been about 25 years old when he married Diana who would have been about 17 years old. Diana's name was recorded in the county as Walworth, which was a name well known in Cleveland industry.
Sometime about 1835, according to a statement by Charles in the 1840 Federal Census, Asa their first child was born in Ohio. Shortly thereafter they moved to Michigan according to a story published in 1903 by a Colonel Charles V. Deland, a historian of Jackson County, Michigan. Next came the birth of Jacob W. Ripley in 1839 in Grass Lake Township of Jackson County, Michigan, a small rural community east of Jackson.
On November 10, 1840, Charles and his brother Palmer, both bought 40 acres of land each, in Grass Lake Township, a map of which is included in this book as the next story. The land that Charles and Palmer purchased was Patent Land. As Michigan had just become a State in 1835, all land was owned by the Federal Government. Previously it had been owned only by the local Indians and wild animals. Once Patent Land is sold by the government, it is in public hands and it bought and sold thereafter with standard deeds.
It is thought that the parents of Diana, Jacob & Elizabeth Walroth, traveled to Jackson County at the same time or about the same time, from Ohio, and had taken up residence only two dwellings away from Charles. Nothing is known about Palmer Ripley, the brother of Charles, except that he bought his own 40 acre farm on the same day as Charles. Another of Charles Ripley's brothers, John, took up farming near Bunker Hill in Ingham County.
Sometime prior to 1850, Charles and family pulled up their roots in Grass Lake Township and moved to a new farm in Henrietta Township.
Life appears to have been ok for Charles and his family until 1851 when 16 year old Asa died. He had been listed on the 1850 US Census of The Town of Grass Lake, Henrietta Township, Jackson County at age 14. He was also listed in column 13 of that report as "Idiotic." In any case, I believe that young Asa had been named after his grandfather as it was common to name the first born male after the grandfather.
Repeated attempts to find Charles in the Census of 1860 have failed. It is unknown why they
March 20, 1808 - December 18, 1883