John Knight (1849-1912) was born at Badsey in June 1849, the eldest of three children of William Knight, an agricultural labourer, and his wife, Elizabeth (née Hartwell). His family had lived in Badsey since the 17th century.
John and family lived at Sharps Row, Badsey, in 1851. Several of their neighbours at Sharps Row were also to emigrate to America in the 1870s: John Hicks and his daughter, Mary Anne Sears, William and Elizabeth Edgington, John Wheatley. By 1861 they had moved to Badsey Fields Lane, where John’s father worked as a carter, and by 1871 they were living on Brewers Lane.
In 1872, John, then aged 22, decided to seek his fortune overseas. Together with his friend from the village, Owen Joseph Hall, they sailed from Liverpool steerage class, arriving in Baltimore, Maryland, on 30th April 1872, from whence they headed to Auburn, Ohio. Whereas Owen later returned to Badsey, John settled in America, and his parents and siblings emigrated, too.
John married Sadie Marshall in about 1876. They had two children: Ernest Edwin (c1879) and Loula (1883). At the time of the 1880 census, John was farming in Auburn, Geauga County, Ohio. The household comprised his wife and son, his parents and his two siblings. They lived eight houses away from the Edgington family.
In the early 1880s, the whole Knight family moved to Duplain Township, Clinton County, state of Michigan, where the brothers had farms next to each other. At the time of the 1900 census, John and family were still at Duplain, with Edwin and his wife next door. Their mother had died in 1885, so their widowed father was living with Edwin. William Knight died in 1907. The two brothers still lived next door to each other in 1910.
John died at Duplain, Clinton, on 1st October 1912, aged 63.