Randolph County, Indiana
Union B. Hunt
No one perhaps in Randolph county is more widely known than Union B.
Hunt, who was born in Nettle Creek township, September 2, 1864.
He is a son of Joshua P. and Rachel Howell Hunt. Having been born
during the Civil
war and his father being a loyal supporter of the Federal Government, he was
christened "Union". His paternal grandfather, John Hunt, was a
native of Kentucky and was colonel of a regiment in the war of 1812.
The greater part of the life
of Mr. Hunt has been spent in Randolph county, the early years of his
boyhood having been spent in Vermilion county, Illinois. During his boyhood
days, he worked, on a farm, later clerked in a store and engaged in other
occupations. He studied law in the office of Watson and Watson
and was admitted to practice in 1889, forming a partnership with John R.
Wright under the firm name of Wright and Hunt. This
partnership continued for a number of years, when a new partnership was formed
with C. L. and T. W. Hutchens under the firm name of Hutchens,
Hunt and Hutchens, the latter partnership continuing up to 1898,
when he was nominated by the Republican party for secretary of state of
Indiana, to which position he was elected and re-elected in 1900. In 1892 he
engaged in the newspaper business, buying a half interest in the Winchester
Herard, one of the leading Republican newspapers in the state, assuming
practically the entire editorial charge of the paper and continued in that work
for about four years, in the meantime keeping in close touch with his law
practice. At the expiration of his term as secretary of state, Mr. Hunt
returned to Winchester and re-engaged in the practice of law with Hon. Enos
L. Watson under the firm name of Watson and Hunt. This
partnership continued until 1903, when he was appointed a member of the Indiana
Railroad Commission and was by his colleagues elected chairman of that
Commission, which position he filled until December 1, 1908, when he resigned
to accept the presidency of the Supreme Lodge Knights of Pythias Insurance
Department, which position he now holds. This position is one of importance in
the business world, as the institution of which he is president has a
membership of 71,000, representing one hundred million dollars of insurance,
the society having assets of more than six million dollars.
Mr. Hunt has occupied many prominent positions in the Order of
Knights of Pythias, having served in various grand lodge offices in Indiana,
first being appointed Grand Instructor, following which he was elected Grand
Vice Chancellor and elected Grand Chancellor in 1897. He was chosen as Supreme
Representative in 1901 and continued as such representative for ten years.
While Mr. Hunt does not at this time take an active part in
politics, he is a Republican and was for many years active and influential in
the work of that party, having made speeches in every county in the state
except one and has spoken several times in a number of counties; not only has
he addressed audiences in behalf of the political party he represents, but
since he became identified with the Knights of Pythias, he has spoken before
the grand lodges in every state in the Union and in many of the Canadian
provinces in behalf of fraternal organizations and especially in behalf of the
Insurance Department of which he is the president.
On November 1, 1891 he married Mary M. Hinshaw, who was the
daughter of Absalom and Eliza Hinshaw. To them was born one
child, Ethel, who is now the wife of K R. Davis, of Indianapolis.
Past and Present of Randolph County, Indiana, 1914.
Contributed by Gina Richardson
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