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John Phillips Gorst
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Birth: Feb. 22, 1838
New Brunswick, Canada
Death: Aug. 11, 1906
Port Orchard
Kitsap County
Washington, USA

Gorst, John

Was born in St. Johns, New Brunswick, on the 22d of February, 1838. After becoming a man, he engaged in farming and lumbering in his native place till 1855, when he came to Minnesota and located on a farm in Bellevue township. In 1858, he returned to the East, as far as Maine, where he enlisted in Company A, of the Thirteenth Maine Volunteer Infantry. Served as Color-Sergeant, and at the battle of Pleasant Hill, Louisiana, won a recommendation from the commanding officer for meritorious conduct. In January, 1865, he was discharged, and the following fall returned to Minnesota and located on a farm in Belle Prairie, but devoted most of his time to lumbering. In October, 1880, he came to his present location, Gorst's Mill, and began the manufacture of lumber. Miss Lorinda M. Coe, daugther of Rev. O. A. Coe, who was formerly a missionary at Red Lake, and now residing at Belle Prairie, became his wife on the 25th of August 1864. The ceremony occurred at Oberlin, Ohio, during Mr. Gorst's army life, while absent from his regiment on furlough. The union has been blessed with six children. (History of the Upper Mississippi Valley, Winchell, Neill, Williams and Bryant, Minnesota Historical Company, Minneapolis: 1881; p. 645)

  Families with Pioneer Roots Honored by
                        Historical Society

      Five different families with deep local roots will be honored this week at the Second Annual Kitsap Heritage Banquet hosted by the Kitsap County Historical Society and Museum.


South Kitsap

      The Ainsworth and Gorst families are closely connected by marriage and share a lot of the same history.
      John P. Gorst was born in 1839 at Woodstock, New Brunswick, served two years in the Union Army during the Civil War and was honorably discharged in 1865 with special citation for bravery. During that year, Gorst married Lorinda Moore Coe at Oberlin, Ohio, a student at Oberlin College, the first women's school in America. The couple moved to Belle Prairie, Minn., where they resided for the next 16 years. Six of their eight children were born there. John Gorst worked for the Hudson's Bay Company, cruised timber as a logger and later farmed before moving his family to Fort Ripley, Minn., where he built and operated a sawmill. He helped construct the first schoolhouse for the district, which also served as a church. Later, Gorst added a grist mill to his plant. The first schoolteacher in the district was Mrs. Jacob Showers, later a pioneer in Sidney. John Gorst's daughter, May, also taught at [Fort] Ripley after attending St. Cloud Normal School. The Gorst family arrived in Seattle in 1888, rented space in the home of a friend, Sam Phillips, and then settled on 60 acres at the head of Sinclair Inlet near Anderson Landing.
      By July 1888, their new home was ready. The older Gorsts were later joined by their two older daughters' families. Minnie and May Gorst had married Allison and Charles Ainsworth from New York. They met while the Ainsworth brothers were employed at the Gorst mill in [Fort] Ripley, Minn. Their children were Minnie Eva (married Allison Ainsworth); Alice May (married Charles Ainsworth); and Effie Grace (married Walter Wheeler). Lulu Viola taught school in Kitsap County for several years before she married Charles Taylor, an Alaskan. They spent most of their married life in Alaska. The youngest of the children, Lorena (Rena), married Ralph Siegner. The Siegners built their home on Mitchell Hill not far from the Ainsworths, where they reared daughters Laurice Siegner (Hayden), Port Orchard; Celeste Siegner (Patterson), Tacoma; and Melba Siegner (Moran), Port Orchard.
      John Gorst was postmaster, delivered mail and received supplies brought in by steamers Ellis and Grace for distribution in the upper bay area. John died in a hunting accident in 1906; Lorinda died seven years later.
      In 1895, John Gorst's brother Samuel joined the family at the head of the bay. He bought a 160-acre tract from the Port Blakely Mill Company. The Sam Gorsts made their home for years on the north side of Gorst Creek and reared eleven children. Sam Gorst's children were drawn away from the South Kitsap area either by marriage or careers when they became adults. (Kitsap County Historical Society and Museum; Port Orchard Independent, 19 September 2012)

1900 Federal Census, State of Washington, Port Orchard, Kitsap County, dwelling #229:
GORST, John, age 46, b. Feb 1854, New Brunswick; married 36 years
GORST, M. Lorinda, age 54, b. July 1845, Minnesota; 8 children born, 6 children living
(Living in the same household are their three adult children) [Contributed by John Van Essen]

Civil War Pension Index
Lorinda GORST, living in the state of Washington, applied for a pension 04 December 1906 [Contributed by John Van Essen]

Death Record: Ancestry: Washington Deaths, 1891-1907, Port Orchard, Kitsap County:
Name: John GORST
Age: 68
Died: 11 August 1906
Cause of Death: gunshot wound
Born: Canada
Parents: Not Listed
[Contributed by John Van Essen]

Other Children:
Effie Grace Gorst Wheeler, b. 1870, Belle Prairie, Morrison County, MN
Henrietta Myrtle, b. 1875, Belle Prairie, Morrison County, MN
Vergne Centennial Charles Gorst, b. 18 August 1876, Belle Prairie, Morrison County, MN
Vivian, b. ca 1883, Fort Ripley, Crow Wing County, MN
[Contributed by John Van Essen] 
Family links: 
  Samuel Gorst (1792 - 1848)
  Linda Moore Coe Gorst (1845 - 1913)
  Minnie Eva Gorst Ainsworth (1867 - 1960)*
  Alice May Gorst Ainsworth (1868 - 1942)*
  Vergne Centennial Gorst (1876 - 1953)*
  Lula V Taylor (1878 - 1961)*
  Rena E Gorst Siegner (1886 - 1974)*
  Charles Richard Gorst (1836 - 1908)*
  John Phillips Gorst (1838 - 1906)
  Samuel Gorst (1841 - 1913)*
*Calculated relationship
BORN FEB. 22, 1838
DIED AUG. 12, 1906

Knights of Pythias Cemetery
Port Orchard
Kitsap County
Washington, USA
Plot: Section 66
Created by: A. Nelson
Record added: Jul 29, 2011
Find A Grave Memorial# 74129420
John Phillips Gorst
Added by: John Van Essen
John Phillips Gorst
Added by: Peter Joseph ("PJ") Braun
John Phillips Gorst
Added by: Peter Joseph ("PJ") Braun
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 Added: Jul. 29, 2011

 Added: Jul. 29, 2011

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