In the book "The 1955 History of Steuben County, Indiana" by Harvey W. Morley
Biography of Oscar F. Rakestraw
"Oscar F. Rakestraw was born in Mahoning County, Ohio, October 30,
1849, a son of Calab and Elezan Rakestraw, who came to Steuben County with
their family in 1858, settling near Metz, Indiana.
"Oscar, the eldest, received his education in the Public School and
Hillsdale College. After leaving school, he was engaged in the Insurance
Business until 1877, when he entered the office of the Steuben Republican,
with which he was connected, as editor, for nearly forty-five years.
"Mr. Rakestraw was married on June 10, 1879, to Melissa Cline, eldest
daughter of the late Michael and Barbara Cline. Two daughters were born to
Mr. and Mrs. Rakestraw; Ruth Elezan, now Mrs. John Hansen of Saddle River,
New Jersey; and Dorothy, now Mrs. Perry Hull of Lake James, Indiana.
"Mr. Rakestraw was one of the few men who was bigger than his job,
and who saw not only the need of humanity, but saw a way to be a benefactor
to the community, to religion, and to educational advancement; and, for years,
practiced his beliefs, conscientiously and consistently. In the early days
of Tri-State College, he was one of those understanding and sympathetic men
who gave much needed help and encouragement to the management and faculty
when they were needed most and, also, extended the helping hand, and gave
encouragement and financial aid to the worthy, ambitious, and often discouraged
"He was active in the Republican Party, but never sought office.
"For over forty years he was a member of the First Christian Church
where for many years he served in the capacity of Elder.
"He built and maintained a home, and lived many summers at Lake James
where many hours were spent fishing.
"Following a short illness he passed away at the family residence,
January 24, 1922, at the age of seventy-three years."
Submitted by: Theresa Ferguson