|William Mount Banes|
|It does not fall to the lot of many to have their names engraved upon the roll of honor of a nation, to have fame almost world-wide; but he who is associated with the founding and up building of a county, and thus with the general prosperity of a state, has truly performed a noble part, and his posterity can but look upon his record with just pride.
For more than three-score years the Banes family have been numbered with the inhabitants of Franklin county, and no more sterling citizens ever dwelt in this section of Indiana. For several generations the family lived in Pennsylvania, and in Buckingham township, Bucks county, that state, our subject's father, Jonathan Banes, was born, February 12, 1817. He was a son of Jonathan and Anna (Gillingham) Banes, the former born about 1778, and the latter a daughter of John Gillingham, also of an old family in the Keystone state. The great-grandfather of our subject on the paternal side also bore the Christian name of Jonathan. He died in 1833, aged about ninety years. After the death of his wife, Ann, Jonathan Banes, the second of the name, came to Indiana, and passed his last years at the home of his daughter, Mrs. Emeline High, his death occurring in 1862 Mrs. High is still living, having survived her husband, John High, who died in 1893. Her only sister, Eliza Ann, was called to the better land in girlhood. Cyrus, the eldest brother, went to the west when a young man, became an Indian scout, and it is supposed that he was slain by the redskins. John, another brother, died when about twelve years of age.
Jonathan Banes, the third of the name, born in 1817, as stated above, left the parental home when he was sixteen years of age, and served as an apprentice to the carpenter's trade in Montgomery county, Pennsylvania. For a period he worked in Philadelphia, and in 1837 he came to Brookville, as he had learned of the Whitewater canal, then in process of construction, and believed that he could find employment thereon. This proved to be the case, and he was the superintendent of the building of the wood-work of the dam at Brookville, several, locks, the Case dam, further down the river, and several canal bridges. In 1839 he took the contract for the construction of the lock and an aqueduct at Metamora, but work was suspended that fall, owing to a lack of funds. The following spring Mr. Banes received payment for his past labors and invested the amount in horses, which he drove to Pennsylvania and sold. That autumn he returned, and for four years he was engaged in merchandising at Brookville. but since the spring of 1S45 he has been a resident of Metamora. Having erected a cotton factor}- here, he operated it successfully for a number of years, in the meantime being also engaged in a mercantile business, with his brother Jenks and Calvin Jones. Of late years he has given his attention to agriculture, and to the investing in and sale of land, both in this county and in Illinois, where he entered considerable unimproved property. Long ago he won a place among the wealthy business men of the county, and he owes his means and high standing entirely to his own well directed industry.
A notable event in the life of Jonathan Banes was his marriage, September 5, 1841, to Maria Mount, a daughter of Judge David .Mount, of Metamora. He was born in 1778, in New Jersey, and came to Indiana in 1811. Here he won distinction as a statesman and associate judge, serving in the legislature for many years, acting as one of the honorable body of representative citizens who drew up the constitution of the state, and acting as associate judge of Franklin County. His wife, whose maiden name was Rhoda Hunt, was born in New Jersey, in 1785. She survived him about twenty years, her death occurring in February, 1870. and he having died May 18, 1850. Mrs. Banes, who was born June 24, 1820, is the only survivor of her family. Her sister Sarah, who became the wife of Colonel Daniel Hankins, of Connersville, died in 1839, and her brother James, who for many years was associated in business with Colonel Hankins. is deceased. Jonathan Mount, the next brother, removed to Carroll county, Indiana, where he passed the remainder of his life; and Peter, the youngest, died in Wabash county, where he had lived for some time. Rebecca Ann, born in 1815, never married; and her death took place in 1849. She and Mrs. Banes were the only members of that family born in Franklin county, the others having been born in New Jersey. The two children born to Jonathan Banes and wife were William Mount and Mary. The latter, born in 1846, became the wife of E. W. High, and died September 12, 1890.
William Mount Banes, born June 5, 1843, on the site of his present home, which was the homestead of his parents, has always been a resident of Metamora township. From his youth he has devoted his time to farming and stock-raising, and the finely improved and valuable homestead which he now occupies comprises over one thousand acres. He has a beautiful home where his friends are made royally welcome, hospitality being one of the marked attributes of his nature.
The marriage of Mr. Banes and Nancy, daughter of Thomas Tague, an early settler of this township, was solemnized April 6, 1871. Both of her parents died in 1871, and her death occurred ten years later, when she was in her thirty-sixth year. The three children of that marriage are Cora, Linnie and Leroy. Both daughters graduated from Oxford Female College, and the son is studying civil engineering at Purdue University, and is a young man of great promise. On the 29th of September, 1887, Mr. Banes married Miss Annie Olivia Clouds, daughter of the Rev. George C. and Mary A. Clouds. The former is a well known minister of the Methodist Episcopal Church, now located at Greensburg, Indiana. He is a native of Philadelphia, while his wife was born in Cincinnati. Mrs. Banes also is a Cincinnati lady, her birth having occurred September 29, 1863, and all but one of her seven brothers and sisters are still living. The only child of our subject and wife is Mary, who was born October 10, 1888. They are members of the Methodist Episcopal church, and fraternally Mr. Banes is a Mason of the Royal Arch degree.