John E. Hatfield, farmer, section 26, Norwich Township, was born in the city of New York, Feb. 22, 1833. His parents, William and Sarah (Craft) Hatfield, were both born in Vermont, where his father was a farmer. He died when his son was in early youth, and the mother followed her husband to the grave not long after.
Mr. Hatfield resided with a man named William Tross, and was cared for in this family until he was 16 years old, bred meanwhile to the calling of a farmer and acquiring a fair education at the common school. He afterward spent about five years as an assistant in a saw-mill, with Ulster, Sullivan & Co., and resided in New York until 1861, when he removed to Michigan, locating primarily at Grand Rapids. He was there employed in a mill until the fall of 1867, when he entered a homestead claim of 40 acres of land in Norwich Township, and devoted his energies and time to its improvement. A later purchase has increased his landed possessions to 160 acres, where he in engaged in creditable and prosperous farming. In political faith he is an adherent of the Republican party, and has held the Township offices of Justice of the Peace, Highway Commissioner, Assessor, Treasurer, etc. He is earnestly and actively interested in whatever promotes the grade of progression in his township.
Mr. Hatfield has been twice married. His first wife was Mary, daughter of Martin and Rebecca (Miller) Kator, a native of the state of New York. She died Dec. 9, 1860, leaving two children, Julia A. and Mary Emma. Mr. Hatfield was a second time married July 12, 1874, to Mrs. Rosa (LaFave) Langford, daughter of Oliver and Mary (Gonyon) LaFave. She was born Feb. 15, 1837, and is the mother of two children, Guy P. Langford and Della May Hatfield.