Barton Collins (deceased) was one of the first of the pioneers of Jamestown Township. His wife, who shared his lot and survived him a third of a century, was better known to the old settlers from her longer residence. She was married to Mr. Collins in 1820, and in 1835 they came to this State and county, being the first white settlers of Jamestown Township. They settled upon the farm where they both remained their natural lives, and which is now the property of George W. Collins. Mr. Collins died in January, 1849, after which Mrs. Collins lived on the homestead with her son until her death, July 16, 1882, at the age of eighty-five years, six months and fourteen days.
She was the mother of eleven children, and had the satisfaction of seeing them grow to be respectable and influential men and women. Five preceded her to rest, leaving six to mourn her loss, they being George W., Charles and Mrs C. Mallory, residing in Jamestown; Mrs. Hastings, of Fremont; Mrs. Saxton, of Coldwater, Mich.; and Mrs. Seeley, of Noble County. Mrs. Collins was a member of the Baptist church, in her native State, from which she brought a letter and afterward became identified with the society of that denomination organized at Jamestown, but which went down some years before her death. She retained her eyesight and faculties to a good old age, and was a great reader, taking much comfort in perusing the papers.
1885 History of Steuben County, Indiana
One of the pioneers of Jamestown Township, Barton Collins was born on February 23, 1794, In Ira, Richland County, Vermont. He was married in 1829. Collins came west in 1834 but did not enter any land at that time. In the spring of 1835, he sold his land in the East and started again with his family consisting of himself, wife and nine child, six daughters and three sons. He sent his goods by water to Detroit and he came by land with his team. They were three weeks on the road. At Buffalo they took the boat to Detroit and came from from there to Coldwater. At that time Coldwater had only one log house. From there they went on to Bronson, which consisted of two log cabins joined together which served as a hotel. After a few days in the Vermont Settlement (Orland) he settled in Jamestown Township on land he entered in Fort Wayne, paying $1.25 per acre. The Collins family had 11 children; Julia (C.D. Salisbury); Viola (Moses Hastings); Thirza (Clayton Mallory); Sara (Aaron Collins); Jane (Clayton Mallory); George (Avis Walters); Harriette (E.B. Saxton); Benjamin; William W (Hattie Smith); Phidella (Louis Seeley); and Charles (Lucy Carroll). Their first cabin was built near where the house of Mr. and Mrs. Ben Gleason now live on 120. Charles Collins had six children: Lynn;; Florence; Alice (Harry Wilder); Fred; Walter; and Frank. Many in this area can trace there family back to the Collins line.