Jackson County History--Biographies Part 5 (pages 622-639)
LEONARD C. HUFFINGTON
Within the pages of this work will be found individual mention of many worthy citizens of Jackson county who have proved how great are the possibilities for attaining success and independence through the proper carrying forward of the great fundamental industry of agriculture, and among the number it is pleasing to note that not a few are native sons of the county and have here passed their entire lives. One of such is he whose name initiates this paragraph and who is one of the prominent and influential farmers of this favored section of the Hoosier commonwealth. Mr. Huffington was born on the old homestead farm, in Carr township, this county, on the 10th of October, 1857, being a son of Albert M. G. and Nancy (Shewmaker) Huffington, both of whom were likewise born and reared in this county, which fact indicates that our subject is a representative of early pioneer families. James Huffington, the paternal grandfather, was a native of Maryland, where the family was established in the colonial epoch of our national history, and he came to Indiana in a very early day, settling in Jackson county, where he took up a large tract of government land, having purchased more than three thousand acres from the government and having been in good financial circumstances at the time of coming to the state, so that his lot was somewhat easier than that of the average pioneer. He effected the reclamation of a large amount of land and was one of the influential citizens of the county at the time of his death, while he provided well for each of his children. The father of the subject, who was born September 9, 1846, was intimately adept with the reclamation of much land in the county, which was a forest wilderness at the time when the family here established a home, and he was the owner of a huge valuable landed estate at the time of his death, on the 14th of May, 1869. The widow is still living and resides with the subject of this sketch, being seventy years of age at the time of this writing, she being born January 29, 1834. She has long been a devoted member of the Christian church. In politics A. M. G. Huffington was a man of sterling character and held the unqualified esteem of all who knew him, while his life was one of signal honor and usefulness. He was originally a Whig and became a Republican when that party organized. This worthy couple became parents of five sons, namely: Josiah, who married Miss Emzilla Speaks, and is now engaged in farming in Kansas; C** E. W., born October 13, 1855, and was hit by a train on April 25, 1881; James, who was born October 13, 1853, died February X, 1862; Leonard C., who is the immediate subject of this review; and Josephus, born September 10, 1850, who is engaged in stock dealing in Kansas. The mother of the subject is a daughter of Josiah and Lucretia (Crum) Shewmaker. Josiah Shewmaker was born in Cumberland county, Kentucky, on June 7, 1803. He came to Jackson county with his parents in 1811. His father, Leonard C. Shewmaker was born May 13, 1758, and died October 13, 1837, while his wife Eunice, was born February 17, 1170, and died in September, 1826. The grandfather of the subject was
Josiah Shewmaker, and his wife, Lucretia Crum were married November 4, 1824, and lived together fifty-three years, four months and twenty-eight days. She was born in Clark County, Indiana. To their union four children were born, three of whom died in infancy. Leonard C. Huffington grew to maturity under the invigorating discipline of the homestead farm, while his educational advantages were those afforded in the public schools of his native county. At the age of eighteen years he assumed charge of the farms owned by his maternal grandfather in Carr township, the same comprising three hundred acres, and to this he has added until he now has about seven hundred acres, the greater part of which is very good land. The place is equipped with the best of permanent improvements, including a large and substantial residence, and he gives his attention to diversified agriculture and to the raising of live stock of high grade. He rents a portion of his farm and employs others in carrying on the work of the remainder, while he maintains a general supervision of the place, and is known as one of the substantial and progressive farms and public-spirited citizens of the county in which his entire life has been passed. He is a stalwart Republican in his political proclivities and fraternally is affiliated with Brownstown Lodge No. 60, Knights of Pythias. Mrs. Huffington is a member of the Christian church, to whose support our subject contributes a due quota. On the 12th of May, 1886, Mr. Huffington was united in marriage to Miss Olean Hinderlider, a representative of one of the old and honored families of this section of the state. She was born and reared in Carr township, Jackson county, February 3, 1868, and is a daughter of Daniel P. Hinderlider, of whom individual mention is made elsewhere in this work.
C. C. FREY
Most men who attain success in life do so either by the good fortune of immediate friends, who assist in pushing them to the front, or by faithful service which, in the end, brings its reward. In early times there were not so many openings for young men, and those who expected to succeed wee compelled to begin at the bottom and work up, this being especially true of those who held clerical positions and were employed by others. C. C. Frey, the subject of this sketch, came to Indian with his parents from Baltimore, Maryland,. The first settled at Utica, Indiana, on the Ohio river, and removed to Seymour in 1855. At that time there were few houses in Seymour, the Jeffersonville, Madison & Indianapolis Railroad had been built only a few years, and the Ohio & Mississippi, or, as it is now known, the Baltimore & Ohio Southwestern, came but a short time before Mr. Frey’s family settled in Seymour. The subject was only a small boy, but his arrival was in time to permit him to grow up with what was destined to become one of the thriving and prosperous business centers of southern Indiana. Mr. Frey’s parents came to America from Germany, and were of that sturdy
stock which has contributed so largely to the substantial and continued growth of this western continent. When in his teens he became a telegraph operator. He was first employed by the Ohio & Mississippi Railway as agent at Nebraska, Indiana, in 1865. After serving the company faithfully at that point, and showing his ability, he was appointed to a similar position at Medora where he remained for about eight years. From Medora he was promoted to the agency at Mitchell, continuing for a like period. The next position assigned him was at Flora, Illinois, and at this point he remained until June 13, 1877, when he came to the Seymour agency, in which position he still continues, having charge of the very large freight and passenger business of the Baltimore & Ohio Southwestern Railway business at this place. He will son complete his thirty-ninth year with the one company, although it cannot be said to be the same company, on account of the many changes in that time. Few, if any, officers connected with the company when he became agent are now in the same positions, in fact, many of the original officers are either dead or have quit the railroad business. Should he remain with the road until June, 1905, he will round out forty years in its service. Since he became a citizen of Seymour in 1877 Mr. Frey has served two years in the city council, and has been a member of the city school board for nineteen years continuously. Mr. Frey became a member of the Baptist church of Seymour about fifteen years ago, and has served that organization as a deacon. At this writing he is one of the three senior deacons, and is held in high esteem by his many friends.
B. F. PRICE
B. F. Price, president of the Seymour National Bank, is a native of Ohio, and came to Indiana in 1860. His parents came to America from Ireland. When Mr. Price came to this state he stopped at Jonesville, where he read medicine with his brother who had but recently begun the practice of medicine. In 1863 they removed to Seymour and Mr. Price engaged in the unknown business until 1876, when he sold his store and engaged in grain business for about unknown years. He became auditor of Jackson county by appointment in 1878, to fill an unexpired term, and was twice elected auditor, making in all about ten years he served his county in this position. He was the second man elected clerk of the city of Seymour, which office he held three terms. He was also collector of internal revenue for Jackson county during the presidency of Andrew Johnson. When he completed an official term as county auditor he filled an uncompleted term as postmaster of the city of Seymour. Later Mr. Price became president of the Seymour Ice and Electric Light Company. He had been a stockholder and director in the Jackson County Bank, and soon after he retired from the Ice and Electric Light Company he became president of the Seymour National Bank in 1892, and is now in his thirteenth year in said position. When Mr. Price came to Jackson county there were hardly any public roads, or such as were in existence could hardly be traveled, and there was but three brick buildings in the town of Seymour, the population being only about twelve hun-
dred. At the time of his coming to Indiana his family consisted of a wife and two small daughters. He had been west looking for a place to locate, but heard there were splendid openings in the south part of Indiana and turned his attention in this direction. In addition to his interests in the Seymour National Bank, of which he is president, he is also a stockholder in the First National Bank and in the Jackson County Load and Trust Company. He has been treasurer of the Seymour Water Company since its organization and is still serving in that capacity. A term of more than forty years in business in one county is a rare record, and but few men can point to such a history. It is such men that give a community or a city its character and not only assure its progress but its stability and permanency. Mr. Price is a Democrat in politics, while his fraternal affiliations are with Seymour Lodge No. 204, Independent Order of the Odd Fellows.
THOMAS F. ZOLLMAN
Few names are better known to residents of Jackson county than that of Zollman, which has been made familiar by a connection of nearly ninety years with the growth and development of this section. The family is of Virginia origin, the ancestry on both sided being identified with the history of the Old Dominion from a period antedating the Revolutionary war. The founder of the house came from Germany during the colonial days and located in what is now West Virginia, where he eventually accumulated a landed estate of considerable value. At his death he owned the celebrated White Sulphur Springs, in Greenbrier county, first known as the “Dagger Springs” by reason of his widow subsequently marrying a man of the last mentioned name. Three sons of the original Mrs. Zollman by her second husband afterward migrated to Indiana and formed part of the sturdy frontiersmen who figure in history as the early pioneers. Ada Zollman, a son by his father’s first marriage, was born in Rockbridge county, Virginia, during the last quarter of the eighteenth century, and, when a young man, tendered his services to the state during the war of 1812. He married Polly, daughter of Henry Miller, who served under Washington during the war for American independence and became a man of influence in his section of the Old Dominion. About the year 1817 Adam Zollman removed to Indiana and first located in Washington county, but after remaining there two years decided on a change of situation. In one of the clumsy wagons of those days, drawn by oxen, he transferred his family and belongings to Jackson county, which was destined to be the scene of all the future operations of himself and a long line of descendants. He purchased forty acres of wild government land, then so cheap and abundant, and by hard work eventually converted it into the comfortable homestead occupied at the time of his death in 1853. He left three children; Mary Ann, who died as the wife of Richard Black; Sally, now deceased, who married Isaac Woolery; and
Henry, who subsequently became the wealthy and influential farmer now so well known as a citizen of Owen township. Henry Zollman was born on his father’s farm in Jackson county, February 18, 1821, and grew up amid the scenes of pioneer hardship which many pens have made history. Educational opportunities were few and far between in those days and the best a pioneer boy could expect were a few winter terms in one of the old-fashioned subscription schools taught in the rude log cabin so famous in song and story. Another education, however, more valuable if less literary, was never lacking its essential feature being familiarity with hard work of all kinds, especially that connected with the grubbing, clearing, fencing and improving the wild land, which invariably fell to the lot of the first settlers. When Henry reached legal age his father gave him forty acres of land, which he increased by entering an adjoining tract of similar area, and the conversion of this into cultivable soil constituted the task of many subsequent years. About half of his holdings was cleared by his own manual labor, and none familiar with conditions then prevailing need to be told of the toil and strain involved in the undertaking. The slow but sure ox team, the ax, the mattock and the saw, those indispensable aids of the pioneer farmer, figured as the chief factors of this tedious process of reclamation. Energy and industry, however, eventually conquered, as they always do, and in course of time the patient husbandman was rewarded with smiling fields and bursting granaries. So matters went along for ten or twelve years, when Mr. Zollman, by virtue of increasing prosperity, was able to branch out somewhat along new lines. He brought and sold stock extensively, handled real estate on a large scale, and by slow degrees accumulated what was considered a large fortune before and subsequent to the period of the Civil war. It is estimated that during his career Mr. Zollman has handled fully ten thousand acres of land in Jackson county and he long ago established the reputation of being one of the safest and most successful traders of his time. His homestead about two and a half miles from Medora and there, in a commodious and comfortable residence, he is passing the evening of his life in the affectionate regard of relatives and friends. By virtue of years as well as work and achievement he enjoys general esteem as the leading citizen of Carr township. He has ever used his wealth and influence for the furtherance of all worthy causes, been progressive and public spirited and a splendid example for the guidance of the rising generation. Throughout life he has been a conservative but zealous advocate of Democratic principles and has been called on by his party to fill numerous positions of local trust and responsibility. In 1842 Mr. Zollman married Nancy Hobson, daughter of an early settler of Jackson county. She died some two years later, leaving an orphan child that survived by one year. In 1849 Mr. Zollman was united in marriage with Elizabeth, daughter of Andrew and Zipporah (Tood) Dodge, both natives of Kentucky who came to Jackson county at the early period of its history. The former was a tanner by trade, but subsequently acquired land and became a farmer of prominence and influence. This second marriage of Mr. Zollman resulted in the birth of ten children: Cynthia, wife of W. R. Holland,
Phoebe, wife of D. M. Hughes; Samuel T., a resident of Bedford, Indiana; George W., successful farmer of Carr township; Florence, wife of John Hamilton, who is engaged in the hardware business at Medora; Alice, still with her parents; Thomas F., the subject of this sketch; Henry J., a merchant at Bedford; Elizabeth, wife of George Owens, engaged in merchandising, and a child that died in infancy. Mr. Zollman gave all of the children good educations and assisted them to start in life by donations of ten thousand dollars to each one. No child ever had kinder parents than Henry and Mrs. Zollman, who have lived together in fond affection and mutual respect for more than sixty years. Thomas F. Zollman, whose name appears as sixth in the above enumerated list, was born on the old homestead in Jackson county, Indiana, March 11, 1860. After the usual course in school, and a valuable training in business under his experienced father, he began life when twenty-one years old as proprietor of seventy acres of land which, by subsequent additions, has been increased to two hundred and forty acres, all of which is of good quality and at present in excellent condition for agricultural purposes. In 1901 Mr. Zollman built a fine residence which was supplemented two years later by the erection of one of the most commodious barns in the neighborhood. He buys and sells stock and carries on general agriculture, raising all of the cereal crops appropriate to southern Indiana, and altogether has shown himself in the methods of business to be a “worthy son of a worthy sire.” He has been quite successful in his operations and is regarded as one of the wealthiest farmers of his age in the county. Though a Democrat in his political connections, he as neither care for nor sought office, his only service in that line being short term as township trustee, to which he was appointed in 1903. His fraternal connections are confined to the Knights of Pythias, of which popular society he is an active and zealous member. In 1883 Mr. Zollman was united in marriage with Miss Delia C., daughter of James and Margaret Bennett, a native of Washington county, who subsequently came to Jackson county with her parents. Mr. and Mrs. Zollman have three children, Jessie, a bright young lady of eighteen summers, Grace and Floyd, all of whom still remain with their parents.
FRANCIS M. THOMPSON
The subject of this sketch is one of the representative farmers of the county, his well improved and attractive homestead being located in section 17, Driftwood township, and he is also a scion of one of the sterling pioneer families of this section of the state, which has been his home from the time of his birth to the present. Mr. Thompson was born on the paternal homestead farm in Driftwood township, on the 28th of January, 1844, and is a son of Turner W. and Polly E. (Thompson) Thompson, the former of whom was likewise born and reared in this township, his birth having occurred April 17, 1820, while
the latter was born in Washington county, December 1, 1818. James Thompson, the grandfather of the subject, who was of Scotch descent, and who came from Kentucky to Jackson county within the second decade of the nineteenth century, having thus been numbered among the early settlers of the county, where he passed the remainder of his life. He secured a tract of nine hundred acres of government land, and here reclaimed a farm in the midst of the primitive wilds. Turner W. Thompson was reared on this pioneer farmstead and literally grew up with the country, while through his life and labors he added prestige to the honored name which he bore. He continued to be here actively identified with agricultural pursuits until his death, which occurred about the 6th of March, 1894, at which time was seventy-four years of age. His wife preceded him into eternal rest, her death having occurred on the 12th of July, 1865. Mr. Thompson was originally a Whig in politics and espoused the cause of the Republican party at the time of its organization. Both he and his wife were consistent members of the Christian church, and were held in high regard in the community in which the so long made their children, namely: Francis M., who is the immediate subject of this review; Unity, born November 14, 1846, and died November, 1870; Laura U., born April 4, 1850, who is the wife of George Tash, of Washington county, Indiana; Clinton L, born April 19, 1853, who is engaged in farming in Driftwood township; and Polly Ora, born November 26, 1857, who married David G. Hotchkiss, of Vernon township, Jackson county. The father was a valiant soldier in the Civil war, having served as a member of Company F, Fifth Indiana Volunteer Cavalry, from 1862 until the close of the war. Francis M. Thompson was reared to the invigorating and sturdy discipline of the farm and his educational advantages in youth were those afforded in the county schools of his native comity, and that he has profited by the opportunities thus afforded is evident when we revert to the fact that as a young man he was a successful teacher in the district schools of the county, devoting his attention for several years to teaching during the winter terms, while in the work of the home far, of which he had charge during the absence of his father at the time of the war of the Rebellion. He continued to remain beneath the parental roof until he had attained the age of twenty-six years, and in 1868 he purchased seventy-seven and one-half acres of land in section 17, Driftwood township, to which he later added sixty acres, so that he now has a fine farm of one hundred and thirty-seven and one-half acres, the place being improved with excellent buildings and being maintained under a high state of cultivation, while he is known as one of the energetic and progressive farms and able business men of this section and is held in high regard by all who know him. In politics he accords an unqualified allegiance to the Republican party, fraternally is identified with Vallonia Lodge No. 439, Knights of Pythias, at Vallonia, which is his postoffice town; and both he and his wife are prominent and valued members of the Christian church, as was his first wife. On the 6th of March, 1870, Mr. Thomp-
son was united in marriage to Miss Semira Ralph, who was born October 27, 1847, and reared in Washington county, being a daughter of Benjamin and Elizabeth Ralph, and who died on the 24th of April, 1885. Of this union were born four children: Della, born July 18, 1872, died September 8, 1873; Minnie, born November 23, 1873, is now the wife of Jefferson Wright, a successful farmer of this county; Pearley, born February 13, 1876, died April 6, 1890; Floyd, born November 8, 1883, who is attending the public schools, and a son who died in infancy. On the 13th of February, 1889, Mr. Thompson consummated a second marriage, being then united to Miss Hassie Crockett, who was born in this county, being a daughter of Frank M. and Mary Ellen Crockett, the former a native of Washington county and the latter of Jackson county, in which latter county Mr. Crockett took up his abode in the early fifties. Of this second marriage was born one child, which died in infancy.
David Fitzgibbon of Sparksville, has been a familiar figure in Jackson county for many years by reason of his long connection with the railroad work and his interests as a farmer. He is of Irish lineage on the side of both father and mother, though himself a native and lifelong resident of Indiana. His parents were Michael and Ann (Ryan) Fitzgibbon, the former of whom emigrated to the United States about 1850, locating first in New Orleans, subsequently removing to Cincinnati and later to Indiana, where he died in 1866. David Fitzgibbon was born in Lawrence county, Indiana, December 28, 1856, and when ten years old removed with his mother to Jackson county. His first work was done on a farm for wages and he continued in this line until 1873, when he entered the service of the company owning what is now the Baltimore & Ohio Southwester Railroad. He soon rose to the position of section foreman and has held that place for the last twenty-four years, which is ample evidence of the fidelity and reliability with which he performed the important duties entrusted to his charge. Meantime he saved his money, invested it with good judgment from time to time in land until his real estate holdings now amount to three hundred twenty acres, all of which is of good quality and most of it in cultivation. As his railroad work requires most of his time, he either rents his land or carries on his agricultural operations by hired help. In September, 1884, Mr. Fitzgibbon was united in marriage with Miss Adelia, daughter of William H. Carr, a prominent farmer whose biography is presented at length in another part of this volume. By this union there have been three children: John, who died at the age of two and a half years; Ann and Florence, both at home. Mrs. Fitzgibbon is a member of the Christian church and takes an interest in its missionary and other work. In politics Mr. Fitzgibbon affiliates with the Democratic party, but has never been an office seeker or asked
for political office of any kind. He is in every respect a self made man, and few persons who began life so unpretentiously can show a better record of accomplishment. Starting without a cent, and with but a limited education, he has be dint of hard labor and thrift accumulated a handsome home, with ample provision for his children as well as for himself, when the lengthening shadows foretell the evening of life.
JAMES H. FINDLEY
Mr. Findley is one of the representative citizens of Brownstown, the attractive judicial center of Jackson county, and in the connection it is pleasing to here record that he is a native son of the place and a member of one of the leading pioneer families of this section of the Hoosier state. He was born in Brownstown, on the 24th of March, 1841, and is a son of Hugh A. and Rebecca (Coons) Findley, the former of whom was born in Westmoreland county, Pennsylvania, on the 18th of October, 1792, while the latter was born on the 12th of December, 1801, their marriage having been solemnized in Clark county, Indiana. Abel Findley, the grandfather of the subject, who was born December 19, 1770, was likewise a native of the old Keystone state of the Union, where the family was founded during the early colonial epoch in that state. He removed with his family from Pennsylvania to Kentucky, thence to Clark county, Indiana, and in 1813 he came to Jackson county and took up government land one and one-half miles northeast of the present village of Brownstown, being one of the early settlers of Jackson county and one who was prominent and influential in public affairs in the pioneer era. He was one of three judges of the courts in this county in early days, serving on the bench for a number of years and also giving attention to reclamation and proper improvement of his farm, a portion of which old homestead remains in possession of his descendants. He here passed the closing years of his long and useful life, being called to his reward in the fullness of years and well earned honors, dying December 29, 1845. He married, October 15, 1790, Rebecca Courtney. Hugh A. Findley was a child at the time of the family’s removal from Pennsylvania to Jackson county, and he was reared to maturity on the old ancestral homestead mentioned, while his educational advantages in his youth were the best which the location and period afforded. He inherited a section of the old homestead and became one of the successful farmers of the county, while his life was so ordered as to ably uphold the prestige of the honored name which he bears. He possessed marked mechanical ability and followed the blacksmith and gunsmith trades in connection with his farm work for a number of years. Imbued with the utmost integrity of purpose, honest, straightforward in thought, word and deed, he was naturally accorded the fullest unknown of popular confidence and esteem in the community in which he made his home during the major portion of his life. He lived to
attain the patriarchal age of eighty-seven years, his death occurring on the fine old homestead, on the 24th of January, 1880, while his beloved and devoted wife was also summoned into eternal rest on the 2d of July 1866. They became the parents of seven sons and six daughters, of whom only two sons, George and the subject, are now living. Hettie, the last of the daughters, died February 13, 1904, while George is a prominent citizen residing four miles west of the village of Seymour, this county, being also a veteran of the Civil war. The mother was a zealous member of the Methodist Episcopal church, and in politics the father was a stanch Republican at the time of his demise, being a man of much intellectual force and ever manifesting a lively interest in the questions and issues of the hour. James H. Findley, the immediate subject of this review, was reared on the home farm and early began to render his quota of unknown in its cultivation, while his educational training in his youth was secured in the common schools of the county. He continued to be identified with agricultural pursuits on the homestead until 1872, when he removed to Brownstown and engaged in the general merchandise business, forming a partnership with Wright Vermilya, under the firm name of Vermilya & Findley. The continued to be thus associated until 1878, when the subject withdrew from the firm and engaged individually in business here, continuing his attention to the handling of dry goods for the first three years and then adding a clothing and men’s furnishing department to the enterprise, which became one of the leading mercantile concerns of the county, controlling a large and representative patronage. Mr. Findley continued to be actively in supervision of this business until 1900, when he met with a considerable loss by fire, and finally sold out the business and established himself in the real-estate and loan business, in which he built up a prosperous enterprise, continuing operations until 1902, since which time he has lived practically retired in Brownstown, having accumulated a competence and being surrounded by a host of old and tried friends, to whom he accords the most loyal fealty. When the People’s State Bank of Brownstown was organized he was elected vice-president of the same, but on account of the illness of the president he discharge that gentleman’s duties until the de3ath of the latter, when he was elected president. Upon the organization of the Brownstown State Bank Mr. Findley severed his connection with the People’s Bank and was elected vice-president of the former, which office he still holds. He is the owner of valuable real estate in this county and also in Knox county, and has gained success and independence through his old well directed efforts. In politics he accords a stanch allegiance to the Republican party, but has never sought the honors or emoluments of public office; fraternally he is identified with Brownstown Lodge No. 13, Free and Accepted Masons, and with the auxiliary chapter of the Order of the Eastern Star, of which Mrs. Findley also is a member; and both have been for many years prominent and valued members of the Presbyterian church, of which he is an elder. They have taken an active part in the social life of the community, and their attractive home is a center of refined and gracious hospitality. On the 2d of January, 1870, was solem-
nized the marriage of Mr. Findley to Miss Sarah Hamilton, who was born and reared in Brownstown, being a daughter of John R. and Easter (Robertson) Hamilton, who were numbered among the early settlers in the county.
NATHAN FARMER DAVIS, M. D.
Among the advanced and successful physicians and surgeons of Jackson county is found Dr. Davis, who is engaged in the practice of his profession in the village of Freetown, having a representative support in the community, and being held in high esteem in professional, business and social circles. The Doctor is a native son of Indiana and the representative of one of its sterling pioneer families. He was born on the old homestead farm, near the city f Marion, Grant county, on the 26th of December, 1853, and is a son of George and Charlotte (Baldwin) Davis, the former of whom was born in Pennsylvania, in 1814, while the latter was born in North Carolina in 1818, both being birthright members of the Society of Friends, to whose simple and noble faith they ever held, exemplifying the same in their daily walk. George Davis came to Grant county, Indiana, in 1833, and located on a tract of wild land, which he secured from the government, and there he improved a valuable farm, upon which he continued to reside until his death in 1901, at the patriarchal age of ninety-unknown years, his devoted wife having been summoned into eternal rest December 6th, unknown. He was signally prospered in temporal affairs, having two hundred and forty acres in the homestead farm at the time of his demise, while he also owned other land in Grant county. He was a stanch Republican in politics and wielded much influence in public affairs of a local nature. His father, Joseph Davis, was a native of the state of Pennsylvania, and was a son of William Davis, the son of John William Davis came to American from unknown land in an early day, the name having been identified with the annals of the old Keystone state. It is a noteworthy unkown in the connection that none of the unknown line has died until at least seventy unknown years of age. George and Charlotte (Baldwin) Davis became the parents of ten children, namely: Eliza A., who is deceased; Franklin W., who is a resident of Fairmount, Indiana; Emily, who is deceased; Mary, who married John Daugherty, a resident of Grant county, Indiana; Oliver, who resides in Marion, Indiana; Melissa, who is deceased; the immediate subject of this review; Fremont, who is deceased; Joseph, who is a resident of Grant county, Indiana, and Catherine, who married E. R. Neal, and resides in Grant county, Indiana. Dr. Davis passed his youthful days on the old homestead farm, and secured an educational discipline in the public schools. His ambition was quickened to attain a more advanced education and to prepare himself for the noble profession of medicine, and he early began his me-
dical reading, which he continued in an individual way until 1882, when he was matriculated in the Eclectic Medical Institute, in the city of Cincinnati, Ohio, where he completed the prescribed course and was graduate as a member of the class of 1883, receiving his degree of Doctor of Medicine. He began the practice of medicine on July 24, 1883, at Burr Oak, Jewell county, Kansas, where he spent two years, and then helped to organize Gore City, Gore county, Kansas, and there practiced five years. He then engaged in practice at Amboy, Indiana, and spent three years on Coffee county, Tennessee, practicing in Manchester, the county seat. Returning from Tennessee he began practice at Surprise, Jackson county, Indiana. In 1897 he took a post-graduate course in the Curtis Physio-Medical Institute, at Marion, Indiana, and in the same year completed a special course in the eclectic science as applied to the alleviation of disease, in the National College of Electro-Therapeutics, at Indianapolis, thus further fortifying himself for success in his chosen vocation. He began practice in Freetown March 14, 1903, and has ever since had this locality as his field of professional endeavor, having built up a large and representative business and commanding the high regard of the community, both as a physician and as a citizen. The Doctor is radically opposed to the liquor traffic and shows consistency in giving an unqualified support to the Prohibition party, in whose cause he is an active and enthusiastic worker. He and his wife are birthright members of the Society of Friends. On the 17th of June, 1876, Dr. Davis was united in marriage to Miss Hannah Beeson, who was born in Grant county, this state, being a daughter of Charles and Prudence (Roberts) Beeson, the former of whom was a successful medical practitioner and was also engaged in farming. Dr. and Mrs. Davis have had eight children, concerning whom we incorporate brief record at this juncture: Myrta is the wife of Von Goodykoontz, a farmer of Grant county; Joseph is ensign on the United States trainingship “Yankee;” Nellie remains at the parental home; Levi died at the age of four years; Lawrence is at home and in school; Loyd is attending the village schools; George died at the age of two months, and Mary is attending the home schools. The family residence is one of the attractive homes of the village and is a center of gracious hospitality.
WILLIAM H. CARR
William H. Carr, a well-known farmer and business man of Jackson county, comes of a family which has been identified with southern Indiana during the whole of the century which closes with the year 1904. His grandfather, John Carr, came from Ireland before the Revolutionary war, located in Pennsylvania and spent his whole life in that state as a tiller of soil. He left a son named Thomas, who went to Kentucky, when thirteen years old, to live with an
uncle, remained there until reaching manhood, and crossed the river into Indiana about the year 1804. He purchased land in the wilds of Clark county, but after spending six years in the hard work of clearing his property, decided in 1810 to remove for permanent settlement to the county of Jackson. He first bought a place near what is now Vallonia, but a few years later disposed of this and purchased land in what afterward was named Carr township in honor of himself. This made the third time he had settled in the woods and cleared farms and gave him the right to the title of several times a first settler as well as a pioneer of the pioneers. After much laborious work and all the hardships and privations incident to those days, he at length found himself in possession of a good home and what was for those times a fairly well improved farm. In politics he was a Democrat of the old school and was at one time elected county commissioner on the ticket of his party. While serving in this capacity he was instrumental in selecting the site for the present county seat of Jackson and altogether was a man of unusual influence and standing at the time of his death, which occurred in March, 1847. He was twice married, his second wife being Mary Boas, a native of Maryland, and a consistent member of the Baptist church, who survived her husband some thirty-six years, passing away in December, 1883. There were six children by the first marriage and four by the last, the youngest member of this family of ten being the subject of this biography. William H. Carr was born at the father’s old homestead in Jackson county, Indiana, June 30, 1831, and was indebted for his education to the primitive schools then in vogue in that sparsely settled section of the state. His earlier years made him acquainted with the hard work and privations incident to pioneer farm life and he learned to drive oxen, dig up stumps and help in log rollings, beside doing the endless tasks of every farmer’s boy of the period. He is able now to talk entertainingly of the log cabin with its chimney of sticks, the old school house with its puncheon floor and windows of greased paper, and all the other features of early days in Indiana. After assisting his father to dig a farm out of the wilderness until he had reached his majority, Mr. Carr began life for himself by doing farm work for wages and teaching school during the winter months. When twenty-four years old he took up the study of surveying, an occupation which has consumed a considerable part of his time ever since, either in work for the county or private employment. His brother Thomas having been elected county surveyor, Mr. Carr became his deputy, served in that capacity for three years and still owns the instrument which he used in this business as far back as 1857. Nearly every year since the date mentioned he has been called on to do some special work in his line and has long been regarded as one of the most painstaking and accurate of the county surveyors. In 1857 Mr. Carr bought land in Carr township and this he farmed until 1863, when he disposed of his holdings and purchased the place which constitutes his present homestead. He has greatly improved it by industry and good judgment and from time to time has added to its area until the farm in its entirety includes two hundred seven acres of land. He carries on general farming, by the best modern meth-
ods, rotates his crops and feeds the products of the land to stock as the best way to keep its fertility. Mr. Carr is independent in politics, voting for principles rather than man, and is in no sense an office seeker. June 20, 1858, Mr. Carr married Sarah Ann, daughter of Alvin and Lois (Hill) Critchfield, who came to Jackson county from Ohio in 1854. Mrs. Carr, who was a devoted wife and mother and a pious member of the Methodist church, died October 21, 1892, after becoming the mother of five children. Thomas E., the eldest of these, is a successful machinist at Bowling Green, Kentucky; Adelia, the oldest daughter, married David Fitzgibbon, a railroad section foreman and farmer, resident at Sparksville, Indiana; Barbara Ann still remains at home, and John F., the fourth child in order of birth, is in the tin manufacturing business at Anderson, Indiana. Samuel Carr, the fifth and youngest of the children, was born on the family homestead in Jackson county, Indiana, July 6, 1869, attended the county schools in early life and after arriving at a suitable age learned surveying under his father. In 1898 he was elected county surveyor and served out his term to the entire satisfaction of his constituents and the general public. In the fall of 1901 he was appointed county commissioner, was elected in 1902 and is now serving his second term with the acceptability which comes of close attention to business and conscientious discharge of duty. January 1, 1896, Mr. Carr was united in marriage with Miss Lilly, daughter of Albert and Catherine (Lockman)) [sic] Prather, who came from Clark county to Jackson, where they have followed farming. Mr. and Mrs. Carr have one child, a daughter named Helen. Mrs. Carr is a member of the Brethren Church, and Mr. Carr belongs to the fraternal orders of Free and Accepted Masons and the Knights of Pythias. No young man in the county enjoys greater popularity both in the social and business world.
GEORGE G. GRAESSLE, M. D.
With thoroughly equipped and highly cultured professional men few communities are better supplied than the city of Seymour. The subject of this sketch, Dr. George G. Graessle, is one of the leading physicians, and although one of the younger men of his profession, he has been in practice in Seymour as long as any, with possibly one or two exceptions. When he completed his medical course he came direct to this county and began his professional career. Since that time he has succeeded in establishing a lucrative practice in the leading families of Seymour and surrounding country. Dr. Graessle is the son of Rev. Andrew Graessle, who is a German Methodist minister. His father resided in Brown county, Ohio, when the son was born, and, although of German descent, he is a native of the Buckeye state. About 1875 Rev. Mr. Graessle removed to Louisville, Kentucky, where the son began his studies leading to his profession. Six years later, in 1881, his father removed to Nashville, Tennessee,
where Dr. Graessle was graduated from Vanderbilt University, medical department, in 1888. Before going to Nashville he spent the winter of 1884-5 in the Louisville Medical College. In addition to his diploma from Vanderbilt University, he holds special diplomas for extra work performed in various departments. When he completed his work at Vanderbilt, he came to Seymour, where all his professional life has been spent. He is recognized and esteemed very highly among his professional associates. Dr. Graessle was married April 8, 1889, to Miss Emma Peter, a descendant of one of the leading families of Jackson county. His success in professional life has been such that he is able to invest in other lines of business, and thus bring himself into closer relations with the commercial interests of the city and community.
WILLIAM H. ENDEBROCK
He to whose life history attention is now directed is a representative of one of the sterling and early settled families of Jackson county, of which he is a native son, while he stands as one of the able and successful members of the bar of this section of the state, being actively engaged in the practice of his profession in Brownstown, the thriving judicial center of the county. Mr. Endebrock was born on the homestead farm, in Grassy Fork township, this county, on the 14th of May, 1864, and the eldest of the three living children of unknown and Susan (DeWyke) Endebrock, the former of whom was born in Germany and the latter in Jackson county. John H. Endebrock, the grandfather of our subject was likewise born in Germany, a scion of the olds stock, and there remained until the time when he immigrated with his family to America, locating in the city of Cincinnati, Ohio, where he remained a short time and then came to Jackson county, first settling on a farm southwest of Seymour, where he remained until 1861, when he removed to Grassy Fork township, where he continued to reside until his death. His son was one of those who went forth in the defense of the Union when its integrity was placed in jeopardy through armed rebellion, and sacrificed his life in the cause, having died in 1861, while home on a sock furlough. The father of the subject came into possession of the old farm after the death of his father and there continued to be successfully engaged in agricultural pursuits until his death, which occurred in July, unknown, at which time he had attained the age of three score years and ten. His wife, Susan DeWyke, was born in Washington township. Mr. Endebrock was a stanch Republican in his political proclivities, and both he and his wife were members of the Presbyterian church. William H. Endebrock, to whom this sketch is dedicated, received his rudimentary education in the district schools and continued his studies in the graded school at Tampico, and in 1884 he was matriculated in the Indiana State University, at Bloomington, where he was a student for unknown
years, pursuing the regular course. After leaving the university he was successfully engaged in teaching in the public schools of his native county for a period of eight years, making an excellent record in the pedagogic profession. During the intervening summer vacations he devoted his attention to reading law, having as his preceptors Marshall & Munden, of Seymour, and upon examination he was admitted to the bar of the state in 1889. In the following year he engaged in the practice of his profession in Brownstown, where he has built up a most gratifying business, retaining a representative clientage and having been successfully identified with much important litigation. He has gained unmistakable prestige both as a trial lawyer and as a counselor, and his success has been cumulative in order by reason of his devotion to his work and his broad and exact knowledge of the science of jurisprudence, of which he continues a close and appreciative student. In politics he gives his allegiance to the Republican party and takes a loyal interest in the prevalence of its cause, though he has not been an aspirant for public office. Fraternally he is identified with Tampico Lodge No. 453, Independent Order of Odd Fellows. On the 20th of June, 1896, Mr. Endebrock was united in marriage to Miss Hannah Sunderman, who was born and reared in Page county, Iowa, being a daughter of Henry and Sophia Sunderman, both of whom were born in Jackson county, Indiana, being members of representative pioneer families of this section. They eventually removed to Iowa, where they still maintain their home, Mr. Sunderman being a prosperous farmer of the county mentioned. Mr. and Mrs. Endebrock have two daughters, Clara and Louisa.
Newton Dodds belongs to an old Owen township family, familiar to citizens of Jackson county for many years by reason of early settlement and long residence in this section. His grandfather, Andrew Dodds, came from Kentucky to Indiana about 1812 and shortly thereafter located on government land in Jackson county, situated in what is now Owen township. It is questionable if a half dozen men outranked him as an early arrival, but certain it is that he was one of the very first settlers in this part of the state. He started one of the very first tanneries in the township and for many years thereafter was well known by reason of his success as a maker of leather. He was a shrewd business man, fortunate in his speculations and thrifty in all his undertakings, with the result that he became possessed of much land and other property before the final summons removed him from earthly scenes. His seven children were Brilla, Cynthia, Eurias, Jane Samuel, Elizabeth and Jonathan. The latter, after obtaining a fair education, taught school for some years, but eventually engaged in farming. He also established a saw-mill, which he conducted twenty-five years to the great convenience of his neighbors as well as profit to himself. In fact, like is father before him, he seemed to be a natural-born money maker and one of those men who achieved success in whatever he undertook. He bought and sold much stock of all kinds, including cattle, horses, hogs and mules, and between his mill and his stock dealing and the products of his farm, he became a wealthy man for that day and section. Starting with one hundred and
sixty acres of land, given him by his father, he constantly increased his acreage by purchase until hi holdings finally amounted to seven hundred acres or more. Aside form his business, he managed to find some time to take part in politics as a Democrat and served three years as county commissioner. He was also a member of the Masonic fraternity and altogether a prominent figure in the social business and political life of his community. He married Frances Wrey, a neighborhood girl, who was born within a half mile of his own birth place, and they spent their entire lives within the precincts of Owen township. His own busy life was brought to a close December 18, 1891, but hi widow survives to still offer hospitality to her many friends on the old home place. They became the parents of seven children Samuel, who died in infancy in 1857; Newton, the subject of this sketch; Uretta, who first married N. Woolery, and then Joseph Flynn; George A., farmer and merchant in Lawrence county; Bell, wife of Norman Starr, of Jackson county; Henry, a farmer on the old homestead in Owen township; Phoebe, wife of S. Lee, a farmer of Lawrence county. Newton Dodds, second in age of the above family group, was born on his father’s farm in Jackson county, Indiana, January 18, 1858. Besides attending the common schools, he had the benefit of a short course at Bloomington College and began business on his own behalf as soon as he had reached the aged of twenty-one. The first few years were spent in teaming for his father, after which he rented a farm and devoted himself entirely to agricultural pursuits. When his father died he took charge of his grandfather’s old homestead, consisting of one hundred and sixty acres of good land, and here he has since been engaged in general farming and stock raising, also buying and selling mules. He has shown the same natural aptitude for business that characterized his progenitors and is regarded as one of the successful men of his township. He takes an active part in politics on the Democratic side, was elected county commissioner in 1902, and seems to be booked for further honors at the hands of his party. His fraternal connections are with the Masons and the Knights of Pythias, and his social position makes him popular among a wide circle of acquaintances all over the county. September 7, 1876, Mr. Dodds was married to Anna, daughter of William C. and Dorcas (Allmack) Mitchell, of Bartholomew county. Mrs. Dodd’s father was an Ohioan and a veteran of the Civil war who settled in Owen township in 1872, where he still resides, his wife having died some years ago. He is a member of the Baptist church, a Democrat and has achieved success as a farmer. Mr. and Mrs. Dodds have four children, Norman, Blanche, Ralph and Ruby, the older ones being in school. Mrs. Dodds is well educated and taught school for five years previous to her marriage. She and her husband are members of the Christian church.
John Summers, of the Medora neighborhood, has inherited a pioneer name from ancestors who settled in Jackson county at a
very early period of its history. When John Summers, his grandfather, came with his parents from Pennsylvania to this section there was little that was inviting in an agricultural way, most of the land being in a wild and uncultivated state. Nevertheless he entered a tract of government land in Driftwood township, spent many years in its clearing and improvement and finally closed his career on the homestead that the had rescued form the wilderness. The estate was inherited by his son, Thompson Summers, who farmed the old place until his death in 1864. He married Adeline Allsup, a native of Carr township, and by this union there were two children: John and Thompson, the latter residing in Vallonia with his mother. John Summers, elder of the two above mentioned, was born in Jackson county, Indiana, February 22, 1862, and received the common-school education usually given to the farmers’ boys. As he grew up he put most of his time in farm work for wages and when only seventeen years old rented a place of his own in Carr township. By hard work he managed to make a good living, while laying by something every year for that inevitable “rainy day” which comes into the life of all men at some period. At last he was able to buy land and in 1893 he located on forty acres of his own, which he has since cultivated to good advantage, while increasing his acreage by other purchases from time to time. At present his holdings, in conjunction with those of his wife, consist of two hundred and ninety three acres of as good land as lies in that neighborhood, all of which is made to produce satisfactorily under Mr. Summers’ careful management. He has not specialties or fads of any kind, contenting himself with general farming, and feeding the surplus products of the land to a good quality of stock. Though usually voting the Democratic ticket, Mr. Summers has never sought office and does not take an active part in politics. His fraternal connections are confined to membership in Lodge No. 239, Knights of Pythias. July 31, 1887, Mr. Summers was united in marriage with Miss Carrie, daughter of George W. and Rebecca (Reid) Beezley, and a native of Carr township, Jackson county. Her parents were natives of Lawrence county, and after her mother’s death her father remarried. He died in 1899 and hi widow resides with Mr. Summers, but only two of his eight children are now living. Mr. and Mrs. Summers have an only daughter, Alice, whose birth occurred May 11, 1888, and who is still attending school. Mr. Summers is truly a self-made man, who began life with no capital but his head and hands and a willingness to work, yet we find him now, when scarce past middle life, in possession of a good farm, a comfortable home and everything conducive to a happy and contented life.