Transcribed from "History of Montgomery, Parke and Fountain Counties.
Published 1893. Page 590.
JAMES BALL, who resides on Section 31, Wayne Township, is the son
of a pioneer of Montgomery County, and is numbered among the farmers
and stockmen of the present day who are so ably sustaining and extending
the work so well begun by their fathers in making this a well-developed
agricultural center. Our subject is a native of Butler Co., Ohio,
and was born March 2, 1817. His father, whose given name was Dennis,
was born in Pennsylvania in 1779. He was a volunteer in the War of
1812, and had a brother Henry, who served in the same War. The latter
was taken prisoner and held by the Indians twelve years. He adopted
their customs and habits, and finally married the old chief's daughter.
The father of our subject came to Montgomery County in 1826, in the
early days of its settlement, being thirteen days on the way from
Butler County. He was one of the first settlers of Wayne Township,
where he bought of the government five eighty-acre tracts of land.
His first work after the land came into his possession was to cut
down trees with which to build a log cabin to shelter his family.
He proved himself a useful addition to the pioneer workers of the
County, and his death in 1839 was considered a loss to the community.
The following is recorded of the children reared by himself (Dennis
Ball) and his wife (Margaret LYONS Ball): Margaret born July 22,
1808, married David RUSK, died October 29, 1846; Johanna born Dec.
28, 1809, married John Rusk, died Sept. 1, 1864; Abigail, born Oct.
28, married Edwin Quick, died Oct. 6, 1846; Nathan was born January
30, 1813, married a Mrs. Moore, who died May 4, 1852; Isaiah, who
was born Apr. 10, 1815, died 1839; James was born in 1817; Nancy,
born Dec. 13, 1818, married A. D. SALOME, born apr. 22, 1821, married
Abram HEATH; Sarah, born Sept. 14, 18__, married Jack MULLEN, died
May 18, 1883. When our subject started out in life he received some
assistance from his mother. He first settled on the old homestead
after his marriage and he and his wife spent the first three years
of their wedded life in a log cabin. But little of the land had been
improved and it was covered with timber, except fifty acres of fine
land in all, and one hundred acres of it under the tillage. He devotes
it to grain raising and to raising blooded stock, of which he has
some fine specimens. His buildings are of a good class, and evidences
of thrift and wise management are seen on every hand.
Mr. Ball was married in this township February 11, 1840, to Miss
Katherine HOFF, daughter of N. and Jerusha Hoff. Of their large family,
Isaiah, who was born the year 1840, married Mary CHAMBERS, and is
now engaged in farming in Mar____ County, Iowa; Drusilla, born in
1841 died in infancy; Nathaniel married Sarah Snyder, and is a carpenter
in Iowa; Dennis, born in 1844, married Minnie Raleigh, and is a carpenter
at Manitou Springs, Colo. ; Robert is a carpenter in Mitchellville,
Iowa, was born Dec. 22, 1845, married Mary GOODALL ; Albert, born
in 1848, died in infancy; Benjamin, born in 1849, married Sarah Almeda
S CHENCK, resides on his father's farm; G. W., born in 1851, married
Charlotte HEATH, is a lawyer by profession; Marguerite, born Oct.
8, 1853, lives with her parents, and Jerusha, born Oct. 1, 1857,
died Jan. 28, 1876. The Ball family was represented in the late war
by the eldest son, Isaiah, who was a volunteer in the Fifth Indiana
Cavalry under Capt. Johnson, and served nobly for three years. Throughout
his career our subject has maintained a high reputation as a man
of signal probity, who is eminently worthy of the trust imposed in
his fellow citizens, who have several times called upon him to represent
Wayne Township on the County Board of Supervisors. He has discharged
his official duties punctually, with great capability, and with an
eye single to the public good. An active worker in politics, Mr.
Ball is a very serviceable member of the Democratic party. Since
the above was written our subject has sold the most of his landed
estate and has retired on one corner of the old farm. He is the possessor
of one of the old long-string clocks, which his father bought in
1828. It is still running, and keeps good time. James Ball, b. Butler
Co., Ohio, 3-2-1817, son of Dennis Ball, b. Penn 1779 d. 1839. Was
Justice of Peace in Ohio many years. Settled in 1825 in Montgomery
Co. Ind. Dennis Ball was Co. Comm. several years, dying in offce.
9-12-1805 married Margaret Lyons - she was born in Penn 1785, d.
1866; came from M. J., settled here 1833; James Ball's children -
Nathaniel, Dennis, Robert, Benjamin, Maggie, Jennie, and Drusilla.
(page 603 Montgomery Co. History, publ. 1878) Tracy Jones
HW Beckwith History (Chicago: HH Hill, 1881) p 603
James BALL, farmer, Wesley, was born in Butler Co, Ohio, March 2,
1817. His father, Dennis Ball, was born in Pennsylvania in 1779 and
died in 1839. He was JP in Ohio for many year. In 1825 the Balls
settled in Montgomery County, Indiana where they entered 320 acres
of land, the patent for this being signed by the "old man eloquent," JQ
Adams. They were 14 days on their journey to this County, which was
then mostly a wilderness, covered with woods and inhabited by wild
beasts and Indians. Dennis Ball was County commissioner for several
years, and was performing the duties of that office in the counrthouse
at Crawfordsville when he died. Sept 12, 1805 he was married to Margaret
LYONS. She was born in Pa. 1785 and died 1866 and was a member of
the Baptist Church. James Ball has lived on the palce where he now
resides ever since his father came here in 1825. He has 150 acrs
of land and has raised stock and grain on his farm, having been quite
successful. Feb 11, 1840 he was married to Catherine HOFF, who was
b. June 17, 1820 and is a member of the Baptist Church. Her parents
came from NJ and settled int his County in 1833. They are both dead.
Mr. Ball has had 7 children: Nathaniel, Dennis, Robert, Benjamin,
Maggie, Jennie, and Dr4usilla (the last two being dead). Was in the
5th Cav, 86th Ind, Vols and was out three years and was sick much
of the time. Mr. Ball is a Democrat in politics and has paid taxes
ever since the very day he was of age. He is a good citizen.
1878 Montgomery County, Indiana Atlas (Chicago: JH Beers, p 55)
BALL, James; PO Wesley (Wayne Twp) Farmer; was born in Butler Co
OH in 1817; came to this County 1826 and now resides on the farm
located by his father, Dennis Ball; married Catharine HOFF in 1840
and has 11 children, 7 living.