From the 1885 History of Steuben County, Indiana

pages 567-568



Thomas Johnston was born in Ontario County, N. Y., Feb. 28, 1820, a son of William and Polly (Walden) Johnston, his father a native of Schoharie County, N. Y., born in 1784 and his mother of Connecticut, born in 1791.  In 1839 his parents moved to Oakland County, Mich., where the father died in April, 1852, and the mother in 1867.  They had a family of eleven children -- Caroline, wife of James Underhill, of Mill Grove Township, Steuben County; Emeline, wife of Jesse Underhill, also of Mill Grove Township; Louisa, widow of William Dillingham; Mary, wife of Augustus Woodworth; Thomas, Warren, Betsey (deceased), Rachel, widow of George Bruce; Henry (deceased), Theodore L., and Mercy, married Joseph Davids, both deceased.  Thomas Johnston came to Steuben County, Ind., Feb. 26, 1840, having when he reached here but 18 cents in money, and went to work as a day laborer.  In 1842 he entered land in Scott Township, where he built a log cabin and began to open up a farm.  In 1846 he sold his land and bought a tract in Otsego Township, and in 1864 bought the Merriman homestead where he now resides.  He has helped to clear the timber off of three farms in Steuben County.  He now owns 138 acres of choice land in Pleasant Township, 100 acres improved and valued at $100 an acre. He also owns 160 acres in Lake County, Mich., valued at $1,500.   He has been identified with the county forty-five years, and has witnessed all its varied changes and improvements, assisting materially in the transformation.  He was married July 16, 1844, to Roselma Merriman, a native of Ohio.  To them were born eight children, six of whom are living -- Louisa, William, Emma, Leonora, Charles and Frank.  Mrs. Johnston's father, Rufus Merriman, was a native of Connecticut, born Jan. 23, 1794, and her mother, Dolly Merriman, of New York, born Sept. 13, 1803.  They were married March 11, 1824, and in early life moved to Ohio, in 1835 to White Pigeon, Mich., and in 1836 to Steuben County, Ind.  They died in 1864, the father May 10, and the mother June 10.  They had a family of eight children -- Lawson, Roselma, Richard, Alvin, Julia, Jerome, Henry and Alvira.  Mrs. Johnston and Alvira, now Mrs. Carey, of Angola, are the only ones living.



Submitted by Kim Davoli