Biographical Sketch of
The first settlement in the north part of the town [Dexter] was made in 1857 by Mahlon Parritt and his son Dexter. They located on the northwest quarter of section 3. Dexter pre-empted 160 acres of land in that section. In the fall of that year they removed to section 33, town 103 north, range 15 west, now known as the town of Dexter. The father made his home there until the time of his death. The son Dexter, in whose honor the town was named, lived there until 1882 when he returned to his original settlement in Marshall, which he now occupies.
Mahlon Parritt [Parrot] one of the pioneers of the county, was born in the State of New Jersey in 1789. When quite young his parents moved to Pennsylvania where he grew to manhood. When a young man he learned the trade of clothier. He followed this trade until 1844 when he engaged in agricultural pursuits. He was married twice, His first wife was Miss Morgan who bore him three children but they are all dead. One of the sons by this marriage, named Emlen, was highly educated. He taught school in Ohio and was superintendent of schools in Wayne County, Ohio. He became professor in the Medical College in Worcester, Massachusetts where he died.
Mr. Parritt’s second wife was Mary McCammitt, a native of Pennsylvania. By this marriage there were five children; only two are living, Dexter and Mary.
When Mr. Parritt was first married he moved to Eastern Pennsylvania where he buried his first wife and two children. In 1832 he moved to Ohio and lived there until 1857 when he came to Mower County.
They came from Pennsylvania with one two-horse team, and a one horse rig. They started the last day of March and arrived in Mower County May 12th, and spent the first night with John L. Johnson. The next day they started out on the prairie to look for the number of their land and got lost. They traveled all day, and at night were three miles from the place where they started from in the morning. The next day they found the land.
The family consisted of Mr. and Mrs. Parritt, their son Dexter, then a young man, and two little children. The family lived in their wagon until the men broke fifteen acres of land and planted seed corn, buckwheat, and garden vegetables. In July they build a log stable in which they lived until fall. In the mean time they had erected a log house on the southeast quarter of section 33 in what in now known as the town of Dexter.
Mr. Parritt died here in 1861 and his wife in 1870.
Their son Dexter, who now lives in the town of Marshall was born January 19, 1824. He made his home with his parents until 1852 when he engaged on board a steamboat running on the Ohio and Mississippi rivers, where he remained until 1857, when he came back to Minnesota, and has since remained here, and has been prominent in town matters. He is a great reader and keeps himself posted in public affairs. He was chairman of the first board of supervisors in the town of Dexter.
History of Mower County 1884
Submitted to MnGenWeb by Kathy Pike, Jan. 10 2007