William H. H. Davis Former Steuben County Resident Dies

William H. H. Davis, who was 89 years old last Sunday died at 9:25 a.m. on Wednesday, July 31, 1929 at the home of his daughter, Mrs. Arthur L. Doub, 2140 Morton Avenue, Elkhart, Indiana. He had been at the Doub home since July 7, when he came from his own home in Defiance County, Hicksville, Ohio.

William Henry Harrison Davis, son of David Conner and Rhoda Cracraft Davis was born July 28, 1840 near New Castle, (then Beaver County, now Lawrence County), Pennsylvania. His early life was spent in the vicinity where he was born, until the call came for volunteers for his country.

He enlisted June 8, 1861, at Mt. Jackson, Pennsylvania. From there he was sent to Alexandria, when a few months later he was sent to Harrisburg, Pa., and there enlisted in the 1st Pennsylvania Light Artillery, Battery B, under Captain Cooper, who paid him the tribute of being a faithful, fearless, and dutiful soldier. He served in the following battles; Mechanicsville, June 26, 27, 1862; Gaines Mill, June 28, 29, 30. During this battle he was wounded, but by firm determination and courage he stayed at his post of duty and fought faithfully in the New Market Cross Roads, Bull Run, second battle South Mountain, Maryland, and Anteitam, which ended the seven day battles. He fought at Fredericksburg, Virginia, December, 1862, and again in the second battle April 30 and May 1, 1863, United States Ford, May 6, 1863, Battle of Gettysburg, July 2, 3, 1863 and Mine Run Nov. 28, 30, 1863. He was honorably discharged June 8, 1864, returning to Lawrence County, New Castle, Pennsylvania.

After reaching New Castle on his way home he was walking on a country road towards his parents’ farm when cries of distress attacked him to a mountain stream into which an eight year old boy had fallen. The child’s mother frantically helpless was the only one near. The soldier leaped into the stream and rescued the boy.. Two years ago when Mr. Davis was visiting his boyhood scenes an aged uncle of the boy hunted him up "to shake his hand" and thank him for the deed.

Soon after the close of the war Mr. Davis located on a wooded track near Angola, in Steuben County Indiana and hewed out a home for himself and his parents, whom he induced to follow him from Pennsylvania. Later he came to Coburntown near Spencerville in De Kalb County, Indiana working on a farm. He was superintendent of a Sunday school which was held in a schoolhouse at McCalla’s Corners, and was active in church work, serving as superintendent, class leader, Sunday school teacher, trustee, financial board and as delegate for different religious assemblies. He was very active in the welfare of the community, serving in different official capacities in the public school, etc.

About 50 years ago he united with the United Brethren Church, of which he remained a faithful member, also active, until about two years ago, when his health failed and prevented him from attending the services where the Lord met and so woundrously blest him. In his last illness he was heard to say not once but many times, "His will be done, I am ready to go." Mr. Davis had been in failing health for a year afflicted with cancer.

Mr. Davis was married to Elizabeth Jane Shutt at Coburntown on October 24, 1875 and they settled at once on a farm at Jackson Center near Auburn. Four years later they bought a place three miles east of Hicksville, and later, after living near Spencerville in De Kalb County, Indiana 20 years, they retired 14 years ago from farm life and located in Defiance County, Hicksville Ohio. Mrs. Davis died there August 16, last.

Surviving are the daughter, Mrs. Arthur Doub; another daughter, Mrs. Martin Wagner of Auburn: two sons, the Rev. L. M. Davis of Huntington and Clarence J. Davis of Milford, and seven grandchildren, and a great-granddaughter. Another son William preceded him in death when about 5 years of age. There are also two sisters; Mrs. Nancy R. Mills, of Waterville, Kansas, and Mrs. Elizabeth Bolejack of Barnes, Kansas and a brother, Wilson Davis of New Castle, Pennsylvania, besides other relatives and friends.

Although a great sufferer, he patiently endured the pain and was only waiting for the Master to come and take him to the eternal home where there is no pain, sickness or death, but one eternal day. So far as known there is only one surviving member of the company in which Mr. Davis served during the Civil War. Services were held in the Presbyterian Church at Hicksville, conducted by his pastor, Rev. H. J. Stahl, with burial at White City Cemetery near Spencerville.

Submitted By: Keith Wagner
E-mail: keithwagner@earthlink.net