Rush County, Indiana
Genealogy and History
a small part of the INGENWEB and USGENWEB Projects
Centennial history of Rush
Edited by A. L Gary and E. B. Thomas
In Two Volumes
HISTORICAL PUBLISHING COMPANY
ROBERT SIMPSON DAVIS, a successful farmer of Rush county who conducts his agricultural operations in Richland township from his home in Rushville, was born in Anderson township, this county, on August 14, 1859, the son of Samuel H. and Mary E. (Henry) Davis, both natives of Maysville, Fleming county, Kentucky. Samuel H. Davis was born on June 3, 1831, the son of Robert and Elizabeth (Henry) Davis, both natives of Fleming county, Kentucky. Robert Davis, familiarly known as "Uncle Bobby," became one of the most widely known men in Rush county, having come here in an early day and acquired 120 acres of land. He left Kentucky when his son Samuel was six years of age, located in Richland township, and here the boy grew to manhood. He received his education in the primitive schools of the times aud then took up farming. When he engaged in business for himself it was on a farm of 240 acres in Anderson township that his wife had inherited. "When he moved onto the place it was almost a virgin forest, but he cleared the land, living the while in a log cabin, and as the years passed brought it out of its wild state into a well-improved farm. He increased his holdings to 580 acres, all lying in Anderson and Richland township, and on his farms he did a general farming and stock raising business. He was oue of the pioneers of the sheep industry in this county, entering extensively into this department of stock raising, and having as high as 1,200 head on hand at a time. He also would feed out between seventy-five and 100 head of hogs, usually ran a car load of cattle a year, and in addition dealt largely in fine horses. His thrift and industry were well rewarded, but he did not allow his prosperity to blind him to the needs of others. He gave largely to the poor, and was one of the best beloved and most highly respected men of the entire community. To him and his wife were born six children - Henry, who is living at Milroy, this county; Robert Simpson, Elizabeth, Mrs. Ed Spradling, of Rushville, John, Mae, Mrs. John W. Anderson, and Charles, living at Milroy. Robert Simpson Davis attended No. 4 school house in Richland township, and also the old Richland Academy, a far-famed institution of learning of the time, after leaving which he took up farming with his father. He then for a time engaged in business for himself as a renter, and then was able to buy a farm of 116 acres in Richland township. In 1896, he went into the livery business in Rushville, and for nineteen years continued to be successfully engaged in that capacity. He was the owner of a fine string of from ten to fifty horses, but when it became evident to him that the automobile was to supersede the horse he sold out and went into the meat business, conducting an excellent market for some time. This he kept but also returned to his first calling, farming, buying a farm of eighty acres in Richland township, and the management of this together with the cares of his meat business keep him busily employed. He was united in matrimony to Ida Margaret, the daughter of Freeman and Lucinda Ellston. Mr. Davis has always been counted among the strong supporters of the Republican party, and while he has never sought political preferment for himself, he takes a keen interest in all local and national affairs. In his fraternal connections he is a member of the Knights of Pythias. Mrs. Davis is a member of the Christian church.