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Rush County, Indiana
Genealogy and History

a small part of the INGENWEB and USGENWEB Projects



Centennial history of Rush
County, Indiana
Edited by A. L Gary and E. B. Thomas
Rushville, Ind.
In Two Volumes

JOHN F. McKEE, cashier of the New Salem State Bank, is a native son of Rush county, having been born in Noble township on March 6, 1875. He is the scion of sterling old pioneer ancestry, his paternal grandparents having been John F. and Hester Ann (Morrow) McKee, natives of Pennsylvania, but who emigrated, first to Kentucky, whence, in 1832, they came to Indiana. Locating in Noble township, this county, Mr. McKee bought forty acres of land, which was densely covered with the primeval timber. Clearing three acres of this land, he built a log cabin and then went ahead with the task of creating a homestead, where he spent the greater part of his life. To him and his wife were born six children, namely : Elizabeth. Charles H., John F., Malissa J., Samuel Simpson and William. Of these, Charles was the father of the subject of this sketch. He was born in the Noble township home and there grew to manhood, receiving his educational training in the common schools of that neighborhood. He followed the vocation of farming and stock raising during all his active life. As a dealer in live stock he was particularly active, being at one time one of the heaviest stock buyers in Rush county. At one time he owned 320 acres of land, all of which was located in Noble township. He took an active part in all movements for the upbuilding of the community and for nine years served as trustee of his township. He married Catherine Simonson, a native of Franklin county, Indiana, and to them were born ten children, nine of whom are living, as follows: Ella, wife of L. Beaver; Carrie B. and Elizabeth, who remain unmarried; Hester, wife of William P. Sipe, of Orange, Ind. ; Martha L., wife of C. Moore; John F., the immediate subject of this review; Margaret, wife of Albert May: William S., who lives in Noble township, and Nelle G., wife of O. P. Wamsley, proprietor of the Scanlan hotel at Rushville. John F. McKee received his elementary education in the common schools of Noble township and then attended the high school, at Orange, Ind., after which he took a course in a business college at Indianapolis, lie then formed a partnership with his father and together they bought ninety-five acres of land which they farmed until his brother, William S., attained his majority, when the latter entered the partnership and they purchased 120 acres more. This they farmed jointly until the father's death, when John F. and William S. divided the land and the former began farming for himself on seventy acres of land. He was successful in this work and eventually was enabled to add to his land holdings until they amounted to 240 acres, all of which was located in Noble township. Mr. McKee gives persona! direction to the operation of this land, which he devotes to general farming and stock raising, putting 100 acres to corn and 100 acres to small grain. He feeds about 700 head of hogs annually. In August, 1917, Mr. McKee took an active part in the organization of the New Salem State Bank and was elected cashier of that institution, a position which he is still filling with entire satisfaction to the stockholders and patrons of the bank. Mr. McKee was married to Georgia Gregg, a daughter of Walter S. and Sarah A. (Carter) Gregg, and they are the parents of two children, Kathleen and John F., Jr. Mr. McKee and family are members of the Little Flat Rock Christian Church, of which he is a deacon. Politically, he gives his support to the Republican party, while, fraternally, he is a member of the Masonic order, in which he has attained the degrees of the chapter and council, and the Improved Order of Red Men. Mr. McKee is a man of kindly disposition and generous impulses and is deservedly popular in his community. He is essentially a man of affairs, being a leader in all public movements in his locality and giving his support to every enterprise for the advancement of the public welfare.