From the 1920 History of Northeast
Indiana page 256:
Otto Simmons. Fully eighty years
have passed since the Simmons family became identified with Steuben
County. In that time three generations have contributed to the
improvement and advancement of this section of Northeast Indiana.
Otto Simmons is a member of the third generation, and is handling the
operation of one of the fine farms in Jackson Township, which was
developed from a wild estate by his father.
Mr. Simmons was
born on the farm where he is now living August 10, 1880, son of Henry
Simmons, who still lives with him, and grandson of Cephus and Lizzie
(Churchill) Simmons. Cephus Simmons was born in Vermont and his
wife near Plymouth Rock, Massachusetts. They were married in
Vermont and in about 1837 started for the West. At that time
there were no railroads, and they traveled partly by stage and partly
by ox-team until they reached Steuben County. He lived most of
his life in Jackson Township and as a mason followed his trade in
Salem, Jackson and Millgrove townships. At the time of his death
he owned a farm of forty acres in Jackson Township. His children
were Harriett, Ellen, Henry, Maria, Lucy and Viola.
Henry Simmons, who
was born in Jackson Township October 27, 1840, grew up in the pioneer
days, attended local schools and after his marriage secured eighty
acres of the present homestead farm. It was wild and uncleared
land, and his first home was a log house. As he prospered he
added more land until he had 110 acres, and all he spent on building
improvements represents his investment and labor. Henry Simmons
married Nancy Parker, a daughter of Isaac and Margaret Parker.
They had four children: Philena and Hattie, both of whom died in
childhood; Abbie, who is the wife of Oliver Walter; and Otto.
secured his education in the Morgan District School of Jackson
Township, and from early boyhood has been working on the home
farm. For twenty months he lived on a nearby farm, and with that
exception his entire life has been spent on the place developed by his
father. Since 1900 he has been renting the farm and does general
farming and stock raising.
Mr. Simmons married
in 1899 Mabel Tubbs, a daughter of Frank and Barbara Tubbs. They
have four children: Wren, born in 1900, is a student of the High School
at Flint, Lela, Ania and Frank.