E - F
If you would like to submit a Wabash county biography, please email it to Mike Sweeney
Be sure to include your Name and the biography Source.
A special thanks to Linda Thompson, who has contributed the majority of these Wabash biographies.
WILLIAM A. ELWARD. One of that last surviving members of that little coterie of native sons of Wabash county who date their birth back to the 'thirties is William A. Elward, who was born in a log cabin in Lagro township, Wabash county, more than three quarters of a century ago. All his life has been spent in the confines of the county, and more than the Psalmist's span of years have given him a host of associations and memories that make this locality for him "the fairest spot of the world." For many years Mr. Elward was known as one of the largest grain buyers in the county. In 1912 he retired from active business and has since lived quietly in Wabash, enjoying the fruits of the labors of earlier years and free from the more active cares of life.
William A. Elward was born in Lagro township, Wabash county, Indiana, on September 8, 1838, one of the thirteen children born to his parents, James and Ellen (Driscoll) Elward. Ten daughters and three sons, a typical pioneer family, were reared in the home of the Elwards in Lagro township, and of these children seven are living today, three of them in Wabash, three in Lagro township and one in Indianapolis. The parents had a varied and interesting career in Indiana, and it is fitting that some mention, more or less extended, be made of them in this connection.
James Elward was a native of Kilkenny, Ireland, and was about midway between his seventeenth and eighteenth birthdays when he decided to come to America. This was about the year 1831, and he took passage on a sailing vessel bound for America within a short time after the idea of immigrating came to him. Landing in New York harbor after a voyage of six weeks, for a year young Elward was employed as a gardener's assistant in the state of New York. The hundred dollars earned in that year was paid to him in a lump sum when he quitted the service of his employer, and with that money in his pocket he determined to visit. his home in Ireland. But the call of his native land was not sufficient to hold him there long. Having had a taste of American life, he was soon bound for America's shores again, the second time accompanied by a brother, William, who later died in Vincennes, Indiana. For a time after his return James Elward maintained a residence in Pennsylvania, and while there made the acquaintance of Robert English, a contractor, who was later engaged in the construction of the old Wabash and Erie Canal in Indiana. In the year 1833 Mr. Elward, with others, drove ox team wagons loaded with tools and equipment to be used on canal construction work to Lagro, at that time the largest and most promising town in the county of Wabash. For a considerable time thereafter he was engaged in the work of hauling stone for the building of the canal locks, making his home in Lagro. The work on the canal was of necessity suspended during the winter months, so that Mr. Elward decided he could not better occupy his time than in the improving of a farm. This was followed by the purchase of an eighty of heavily timbered land some two miles north of Lagro, for which he paid a hundred dollars, and in the winter seasons he applied himself to the task of clearing the land or cutting down the standing timber preparatory to the actual clearing process. When a spot sufficiently large had been cleared a round-log cabin was put up, and there he lived during the long winter months. During this time he and a neighbor, who lived a mile away and was also engaged in clearing land, would meet on Sundays to grind their axes, and he occasionally saw a wild Indian roaming through the woods, otherwise he seldom saw a human being. A magnificent black walnut forest, generously sprinkled with oak, sugar maple, hickory and beech trees, the equal of which today spell independent wealth for its owner, was ruthlessly cut down, rolled into log heaps and burned, there being no market in those days for such material, and the land in a productive state being worth infinitely more than any quantity of what is today almost priceless timber. About 1833 or 1834 three Driscoll brothers and one sister, Ellen Driscoll, came from county Cork, Ireland, to Indiana, and settled in the woods in the neighborhood of Mr. Elward's farm. It was thus that James Elward met the attractive young Irish girl who became his wife in 1836. Through the influence of Mr. Elward two of his brothers other than William, previously mentioned, came from Ireland. They were Thomas and Richard Elward. Thomas engaged in business at Memphis, Tennessee, and there he died in later years. Richard, who located in Natchez, Mississippi, was a bookbinder by trade, became prominent in the business and other activities of that city, married there, established a home, and later founded the Natchez Free Trader. He was a close friend and neighbor of Jeff Davis, whom he assisted into Congress, and through some instrumentality he was afterward appointed postmaster of Natchez, during the Polk, Pierce and Buchanan administrations.
James Elward in after years purchased sixty-five acres and cleared one hundred and forty-five acres from a primeval forest, and there he resided until his death in 1890. He was a man inclined to reticence in his manner, a quality peculiarly noticeable in an Irishman, but withal was inclined to be genial and companionable. He was a lover of horses, and was a hard-working man all his days. He was saving and prudent, and he educated his children to the best of his ability. Both he and his wife were Catholics in their religious faith, and in that faith reared their family. A democrat, and while always an interested participant in the discussions of the day, he was never found an aspirant for political preferment or favors of whatever order.
William A. Elward had his early training in the back-woods schools of Wabash county. He knew but little respite from the duties that fell to the lot of the family of a pioneer farmer, and he hoed and grubbed and planted and harvested from season to season as only a country boy can appreciate. He attended the neighboring schools three months during the winter season, and later attended school at Lagro for a time. When a little past eighteen years old he took the prescribed examination for a teacher's certificate, and was given a two-year license as a result of the test. His first term was taught in the vicinity of Urbana, the school being known as the Speicher school, and he later taught the Frushour school in the same neighborhood: In March, 1859, young Elward entered the store of James H. Britton at Lagro. The wages they agreed upon was a hundred dollars a year and his board. The next year he was with W. B. Cubberly as a clerk, and still later entered the employ of Martin Dedreick, who was a grain buyer and elevator operator, as well as station agent at Lagro. In this connection Mr. Elward gained a thorough insight into the duties of a railroad agent and express agent. and, together with his other duties, he was watchman of the bridge at Lagro. In 1865 his appointment as station agent at Wabash caused him to move to this city, and he held the position for the ensuing twenty-seven and a half years.
It was while thus occupied that he began to give some attention to the grain business as a buyer, and soon, with Captain Samuel Steele, succeeded to the business of William Steele, Jr., and the firm of Steele and Elward, thus organized, continued in the grain buying and elevator business until 1883. During that time Mr. Elward was practically the manager of the enterprise, and in 1884 he, with W. R. Adams, obtained control of the elevator at Lagro. Together they leased the elevator at Rich Valley in 1886, and in 1892 came his retirement from the agency of the Wabash station, the better to devote himself to his private interests. He then bought out Mr. Adams and assumed proprietorship of the three houses. He also bought the plant at Andrews, then Antioch, but held the latter plant only about four years. In 1885 he bought an interest in the elevator at LaFontaine, in which he maintained an interest for more than twenty years. He was also identified with the roller mill enterprise at LaFontaine. His grain operations, all considered, constituted him the largest individual grain buyer in Wabash county and one of the most successful and prosperous of Wabash county men. In May, 1912, Mr. Elward sold his grain business, and since that time has led a quiet life in the city. He was married on October 14, 1868, to Miss Ella Fougeres. Four daughters were born to them. Deborah is now the wife of L. L. Duret, living in Wabash. Nellie married L. H. Riffel and lives in Boston, Massachusetts. Leah lives at home, and Adelaide is the wife of J. H. Conner, of Elkhart, Indiana. Mrs. Elward passed away on August 7, 1900.
Mr. Elward is a democrat in his politics and has long been active in local political matters. He was county chairman for twelve years, and was at one time a candidate for election to the office of county auditor, but was defeated by the enormous Republican majority of the county. He also at one time headed the democratic ticket as nominee for mayor of Wabash, and though democratic politics has seldom controlled in this county, he showed his spirit by consenting to run when he was named on the party ticket. He is at present a member of the Wabash school board, and is giving excellent service to the city in that capacity. His has been a useful and honorable career. Within the lines of normal, but concentrated business activity he has won the prosperity that is most men's ambition, and with admiration for his commercial ability his fellow citizens also commend his fine integrity and valuable citizenship.
Source: 1914 History of Wabash County Indiana, page 668-670.
Submitter: Mike Sweeney (gg-grandson of James Elward)
ALLEN EMRICK, farmer, P.O. Somerset, born in Darke County, Ohio, July 16, 1829, youngest son of Michael and Judieth (Nott) Emrick, natives of Ohio and Pennsylvania, of German extraction; attended the common school, brought up to farming, and remained at home until his marriage with Miss Nancy Livengood March 8, 1850, who was also born in Darke County in 1831. Mr. and Mrs. E. were the parents of four children of whom but one survives -- Sarah Jane (now Mrs. James Harris, and residing on the homestead. Mr. E. remained in Ohio for some years after his marriage; came to Wabash County in 1860, locating upon the site of the present home, then known as the old Jacob Wagoner farm, and upon which a log cabin was then standing; the new residence was erected in 1872. Mr. E. is a successful farmer and self-made man; never sought office, but has been elected School Director. Himself and wife are members of the German Baptist Church.
Source: 1884 History of Wabash County, Indiana page 486-487.
Submitter: Linda Thompson
Uriah M. Engleman was born in Lehigh County, Pennsylvania, December 22, 1828. His schooling was somewhat more extended than that of many others of his age, for in connection with the instruction of the common schools, he had the advantage of a course at Allentown Academy. He removed to Berks County when in his twenty-fourth year, and kept a hotel for five years. Becoming dissatisfied with this calling, he returned to Lehigh County, and directed his attention toward farming. After a short stay in that locality, he came to Miami County, Indiana, and thence to Logan County, Illinois, where he farmed for three years. Not being greatly fascinated with the country, he returned to Miami County again, and engaged in the boot and shoe trade at Peru in connection with farming. The venture not proving to be successful in the highest degree, he disposed of the business, and finally came to this county in 1878. Locating on his present farm of 533 acres of choice farming land, and again turning his attention wholly to the operations of the farm. Mr. Engleman was married, November 3, 1850, to Miss Diana Z. Reichenback, who was a native of Pennsylvania, born May 16, 1831. Their children are QuintiusT., born October 16, 1851; Marquis L., November 15, 1852, and married to Miss Ross at present; Thomas A., January 28, 1854, whose wife is Nancy A. King; ellen V., November 18, 1857, now the wife of Mr. F. Tobias; Lucetta A., the wife of James Snyder, who died December 18, 1878; Sarah, born April 1, 1861; Erasmus N., July 15, 1863, and died the same year; Milton, July 6, 1867; Lulu S., October 31, 1875; Tilden F., February 15, 1878, and Calvin G., August 28, 1880. Thomas Engleman, Mr. E's father, was born in the same county about the year 1800, and married Julia Ann Heist. There were three children by this marriage -- a daughter and two sons. The daughter is still a resident of Lehigh County. Mr. E's grandfather was a native of the same county, and a soldier in the War of 1812. His grandmother, Sarah (Owen) Engleman, was of English lineage, and through her and other of his relatives he can trace his connection to some of the most wealthy and influential families of the Middle States. Mrs. Engleman, Jr's,parents were Peter and Sarah (Zellner) Reichenback. A view of Mr. Engleman's fine dwelling and of his farm buildings as seen from the southeast are to be found elsewhere in the work. He is a gentleman universally esteemed, and one that bids fair to enjoy his portion of this earth's goods for a number of years yet, for he looks as hale and hearty as many a man thirty, but for the hoary frosts of years that have settled upon his locks.
Source: 1884 History of Wabash County, Indiana page 267.
Submitter: Linda Thompson
Enyeart family began in the 16th century when two brothers, younger sons of the Prince of Holland, emigrated to America. The elder went to Pennsylvania and settled, the younger to New Jersey. 1816 a descendant of the elder came to Ohio and settled in Butler County. A few years later, three of his children and their families moved to Indiana and settled in Lagro, near the canal. Enyearts are lineal descendants of the Black Prince, famous in english history, and of Louis XIV of France.
With two such ancestors the Enyearts have reason to keep family records. William Enyeart, a descendant, married jane Norris and was father to 21 children. He was commissioned an Ensign in the 4th Co., 3d Battallion, Bedford County on Dec. 10, 1777, and was made 2d Lieutenant on May 23, 1778.
Since the Enyeart emigration, a member of the family has fought in every one of America's wars: Levi Enyeart in the Civil War (1862-1864), Marcus and Russell Enyeart in World War II, Lemoine in Korea, Herman in Vietnam (1962-64) and Larry in Vietnam (1966-68).
Among first settlers working their way westward were the Enyearts settling around Lagro, 1834-35. Brothers Joseph, Levi, and Benjamin, sons of William and Jane (Norris) Enyeart, Ohio, brought their families. Joseph built the first sawmill east of Lagro with his brothers, who were cabinet-makers, and they farmed 360 acres. Their father died in 1828, Huntingdon, Pa. The mother and rest of the 20 brothers and sisters came in later years and married. Jane Enyeart (Aug. 19, 1772 - Sept. 20, 1848) is buried in the old Lagro Cemetery.
Jospeh Enyeart (1792, Penn. - Sept. 19, 1852, Lagro) married Margaret Wichard (Feb. 4, 1816, Hamilton, O.). they had 12 children: Sarah died young, Eleanor married Nathan Miller, John married Amanda Hall, William J. married Nancy Ann Banning, Silas married Sarah Kisner, Jacob married Sarah Lang, Levi married Rosanna Bunker, Jane married Hirom Clark, James married Matilda Hensley, Abraham married Rachael Bunker, and Hannah married Richard Ring, all of Wabash. (Note: Abraham and Levi married sisters, daughters of Isaac and Emilla (Snyder).
Oct. 16, 1850, Levi Enyeart (b. 1828, Ohio) married Rosanna Bunker (Oct. 7, 1832 - Feb. 18, 1923) in Monument City, Ind. She was born in Morrow, O. They had six children: Leander, Harvey, Melissa, Marion who married Amanda E. First, Flora who married William Robert Benson. Levi lived around Lagro and Dora with his family before being drafted into the Civil War in 1862 (75th, Co. A of Wabash County) and killed in Chattanooga, Tenn., Feb. 11, 1864.
Leander Fair Enyeart, Levi's son, (Feb. 1, 1855 - Feb. 2, 1938) married Hannah Lowry (Jan. 19, 1860 - Sept. 21, 1879, Huntington). They had four sons: Dennis, Levi, Marquis (Mark), and Harvey who died young. Leander later married Mary First and had Austin who is the father of Mary Wagoner and Lloyd Enyeart of Huntington. Mary married Homer Wagoner, Jr. and had Michael, Roger, and Tommy, all of Wabash. Leander lived on his own farm land around New Holland. His son Dennis married Grace Hall. He was a retired Honeywell security guard at the time of his death in 1949. They had six children: Harvey, Henry, Harry Emma Louise, and Dorothy (all deceased) and Russell who lives in Danville, Ill. Dorothy married Russell Leonard and had four children: Jane Ann who married Carl Hill, Larry who married Vickie Boardman, Robert who married Henrietta Sizemore, and Linda Lou who married Walter Case.
Marquis (Mark) Enyeart (b. Feb. 23, 1887, Huntington) married Ethel Keesling (July 6, 1907 - Nov. 14, 1961, Wabash). They lived on a farm near Treaty, owning land east of Treaty to Twin Bridges. He was on the board for Liberty Twp. and an assessor for several years. He was also a member and deacon of Treaty Christian Church. Mark later married Iva May (Davis) Harrell and lived in LaFontaine. Their children are Herbert, Eva May (deceased), Elizabeth who married Harold Ulrey, James Howard, Alice who married Ray Baldwin, Norman (deceased), and Marcus.
Herbert L. Enyeart (b. June 6, 1908, Belleville, Ill.) married Garnet L. Sharp on Feb. 18, 1933, in Wabash. She was born Dec. 22, 1909, Ohio. Children are Eva Mae, Lemoine, Shirley, Herman, Estil, and Larry. Herbert was a farmer who owned 80 acres east of Treaty and drove a school bus in Liberty Twp. He was a deputy marshall in LaFontaine for many years.
Eva Mae (b. Mar. 8, 1934, Wabash) married David L. Harrison and owns land one-forth mile south of Wabash on C. R. 300 W. Two sons by a previous marriage are Mark W. and Gary J. Anderson.
Lemoine Enyeart (b. Sept. 30, 1935, Wabash) married Lorrett Peach in Fairmount and had two children. Richard was born Nov. 24, 1956, in Marion where he lives and works for the Dana Corp. Shirley (b. Feb.3, 1937) married Verlin Barlow and had two sons, Kenneth and Thomas.
Herman Enyeart (b. June 29, 1939) married Sharon Lee, daughter of Earl and Katherine Lee. They own land east of his father in Treaty and he works in Huntington. Their children are Tracy Allen, Steven Wayne, and Melanie Jean.
Estil Lee Enyeart (b. Sept. 16, 1941) married Rebecca Draper, daughter of Harry and Barbara Draper. Their two children are Terry Lee and Teresa. They own property in Treaty and he works at Ford Meter Box.
Larry Lee Enyeart (b. Feb. 2, 1944) married Karen Meyer and had daughter Dawn Marie. They own and farm 116 acres east of Treaty.
James Howard Enyeart (Oct. 16, 1912 - Mar. 2, 1965) was the son of Mark and Ethel Enyeart. He married Emma Pratt of Wabash and their children are Dean Robert (Phoenix, Ariz.) and Rosanna who married David Spiering and lives in Missouri.
Source: 1976 History of Wabash County, Indiana page 258-259, "Enyeart's Among First Lagro Settlers", written by Eva Mae Harrison.
Submitter: Linda Thompson
Mathias W. Farr was at the time of his death one of the most respected citizens of Wabash County. He was born in Northumberland County, Pennsylvania, in August, 1817, his parents being of English descent. They subsequently moved to Columbus, Ohio, where he was left without the tender and protecting care of a mother at the early age of nine years. The remainder of his boyhood was spent with his grandfather in Pennsylvania, whither his father returned soon after his bereavement. At the age of twenty years, young Mathias came to Wabash County, settling here in 1837, at a time when the country was very new. Here his sturdy axe assisted in subduing the forests and rendering the land fit for cultivation. In 1849, he was united in bonds of holy matrimony with Miss Sarah F. Cory, a daughter of Jacob Cory, mentioned above. They settled on a farm just outside of the present limits of Wabash, where they lived very happily until he was removed by the hand of that fell destroyer-Death-in 1874. Though the end came suddenly, he was by no means unprepared, his entire life having been a most faithful following of that maxim, "Do unto others as ye would that they should do unto you." His children were as follows: Mary A., born November 15th, 1850; William, born June 3d, 1853; James B., born March 16th, 1855; John W., born May 21st, 1857; Allen S., born August 27th, 1861; Charley S., born August 14th, 1864; Cora, born April 20th, 1868.
Source: 1875 Historic Atlas of Wabash County, Indiana page 43.
Submitter: Linda Thompson
Henry A. Ferree is a native of Wabash County, Ind., born April 7, 1844. His father, Charles Ferree, and his mother, Susan Ferree, were born in Maryland and Pennsylvania respectively. They were the parents of two children, viz., Henry A. and John M. Henry A. Ferree was married to Martha E. Lukens October 15, 1867. She was born June 13, 1849, and died April 6, 1881. She was the mother of four children -- Charles E., Herman L., Laura B. and Franklin H. Henry A. Ferree enlisted in Company I, Twelfth Indiana Infantry, in 1862, and remained in the service until after the close of the war; he participated in numerous battles and raids, and made a splendid record by his bravery and the willingness with which he did every duty assigned him. He is very comfortably situated on a farm in the north part of Pleasant Township, and is a successful and prosperous farmer.
Source: 1884 History of Wabash County, Indiana page 461.
Submitter: Linda Thompson
Among the most prominent citizens of Somerset stands Mr. O. S. Ferree, who has been during the last four years engaged in the drug business in that place. Mr. Ferree was born in Rush County in this State, and came to this county first in 1866. In 1870 he opened a drug store in Somerset where he has built up a flourishing trade, and at the same time gained the admiration and esteem of all his fellow citizens.
Source: 1875 Historic Atlas of Wabash County, Indiana page 62.
Submitter: Linda Thompson
ALANSON P. FERRY. Mr. Ferry was born on the 13th of April, 1820, near Kingsville, Ashtabula Co. Ohio. After enjoying the educational privileges common to the locality in which he spent his boyhood days, he early, when but sixteen years old, commenced the battle of life as a school teacher in his native State. When his career as a teacher had become for a time somewhat tedious, he commenced the study of law, in the offices of Ben Wade, Judge Ramsay and Joshua R. Giddings, at Jefferson, Ohio. In 1842, he came to Indiana, and renewed his experience as a teacher of youth, first in Allen County, then in the town of La Gro, the following year, and afterward, 1844, in Wabash. The reputation thus acquired soon brought him prominently before the public as a man of superior educational ability, and worthy to be intrusted with official honors which were subsequently tendered to and accepted by him. During twenty-seven years of his life in Wabash, he held successively the offices of Magistrate, County School Superintendent, County Surveyor, County Auditor, and Civil Engineer, in each and every of which positions he proved himself thoroughly qualified for the trust reposed in him. He was a veteran journalist, also having been editor of the first paper published in this city, the Upper Wabash Argus. In 1867, he occupied the editorial chair of the Plain Dealer, and remained in that position for fifteen months. Again in 1872, he became its editor, and continued such for five years. His experience in this department proved him to be one of the most vigorous editorial writers in the State, having established more than a local reputation in the field of letters, and as a politician of more than ordinary ability. He was married, July 4, 1853, to Sarah, daughter of the late Stearns Fisher, who, with four children, one daughter and three sons, still survives - Nettie, a teacher in the public schools; Fisher, a printer; James, in the regular army; and Charles, at home. In his family, he was kind and greatly beloved. His twenty-seven years of married life were of unexceptional domestic harmony, and the tender affection existing between husband and wife were his crowning glory. Mr. Ferry was a charter member of St. Anastasia Mesnil Lodge, No. 46, and Ebronah Encampment, No. 21, of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows in this city, occupying a high position among his brethren for activity and zeal by exemplifying the principles of the order in his daily walk and conversation. He died on the 26th of July, 1880, in the sixty-first year of his age, honored and esteemed by all for his many excellent qualities. The funeral took place on Wednesday following (April 28), at 2 o'clock, P. M., from his late residence on Falls avenue, attended by one of the largest gatherings of a similar character, ever assembled in Wabash, Rev. L. W. Monson, a life-long friend and acquaintance, conducting the exercises, assisted by Rev. Mr. Lynch, also of the Methodist Church. The religious exercises being completed, the body was taken charge of by his brethren of St. Anastasia Mesnil and sister Lodges from Marion, La Fontaine, North Manchester and La Gro, by whom it was interred in Falls Cemetery, with the beautiful and impressive service of the mystic brotherhood.
Source: History of Wabash County, Indiana, 1884. Page 249). Chicago, Illinois. USA: John Morris, 1884.
Extracted, reformatted and submitted by: David R. Guinnup, (03/13/2009).
Franklin Fisher, miller, Somerset, was born in Schuykill County, Pennsylvania, March 7, 1831. His parents were William and Sarah (Guise) Fisher, the former a native of England, the latter of the State of Pennsylvania. During the youth of Franklin, his father's family removed to Ohio, where the subject of this sketch received such education as the schools of his vicinity afforded; following farming until reaching the age of eighteen, when he served an apprenticeship at the milling trade, remaining in Ohio until 1865, coming to Wabash County the latter year, engaging in managing the Lock Mill for King & McCrea, in Wabash. The following year, he came to Waltz Township, taking charge of the Indian Valley Mills, purchasing the same January, 1869, conducting the mill jointly with managing, for a portion of the time, a farm that he owns in the township, has kept Mr. Fisher actively engaged. The mill is quite an extensive one, its capacity having been considerably increased by Mr. Fisher, making an expenditure of $2,000 since he became owner of this property. In addition to the mill, Mr. Fisher owns 104 acres of land, and is a successful business man and popular citizen. Mr. Fisher was united in matrimony July 26, 1852, with Miss Cordelia Jane Sigler. To this marriage were born six children, as follows: G. W., now engaged in a merchantile business; Franklin Warren, residing upon the home farm; Nancy Jane, Sarah Annie, Edwin Arthur and Albert De Forest are still under the parental roof. Mrs. Fisher died March 30, 1882.
Source: 1884 History of Wabash County, Indiana, page 487.
Submitter: Linda Thompson
MAJ. STEARNS FISHER.
Steams Fisher, the son of Jonathan and Sarah (Stearns) Fisher, was born November 25,1804, in Marlboro, Vt. His father and mother were natives of Vermont also; the former, losing his father when but seven years old, was brought up by Mr. and Mrs. Hastings in Massachusetts, and became in after life a man of character and influence in his native State. Stearns Fisher, the son, remained in Vermont with his parents until his thirteenth year, when he removed with them to Cuyahoga County, Ohio, and there attended the common schools of the country, such as the times afforded, studying diligently to qualify himself as a teacher. Mr. Fisher was an apt scholar, and by the generous exercise of his faculties soon became sufficiently learned to satisfactorily instruct others in the fundamental branches. He taught his first school in 1824, and as compensation for this onerous duty he received an equivalent in hemlock boards, "which," the record says, "are still in use in a barn then belonging to his father." His occupation as a teacher was only a means to an end. He desired to become a scholarly, business man, to aid himself in the accomplishment of which he appropriated a portion of his time to teaching, and from the proceeds prepared the way for a life of usefulness and distinction by close application to those departments of study which he conceived to be best calculated to lead him directly life toward the hoped-for position in life. Laboring during the day to secure the means of subsistence, he studied at night after night, sometimes unitil the small hours of morning, to make more rapid advancement in his prepatory course. Afterwards, he engaged as a common laborer on the Wabash & Erie Canal, during the early stages of its construction, devoting his nights, as before, to preparation for the practical duties of a civil engineer on that most important thoroughfare. Perseveringly he labored on, and erelong the ideal of his life was attained, and he was elevated to the position of assistant civil engineer, and subsequently employed as such, holding the place until the completion of the canal. As an engineer in laying out and directing the construction of public works in detail, he had few equals and no superiors. With the excellent record he had made for himself in view, he was afterward made superintendent, and held that position until the canal passed into the hands of the bondholders in 1847. Again, in 1852-54, when the projection of the Lake Erie, Wabash & St. Louis Railroad through this county had been determimed upon, he superintended the survey and location of its line, with the fidelity characteristic of his life and experience.
Mr. Fisher's ability was not confined to the accepted sphere of a civil engineer. He was a proficient also in the department of practical agriculture, a qualification recognized by the leading agriculturists of the State, who in 1855, elected him a member of the State Board of Agriculture. This position he held for a number of years, and during the time served two terms as President of the board. At that time, and for several years anterior, commencing at the conclusion of his work on the railroad line, he had removed to and was comfortably situated on his farm, four miles west of the city, engaged chiefly in its management, and in the working of his valuable stone quarry, both of which were sources of profit to him. In 1860, he was elected to represent Wabash County in the Lower House of the State Legislature, and served as such during the exciting session of 1861, commanding, by his exercise of a sound judgment in measuring men and discriminating in matters of public policy, the respect and confidence of the leading legislative and executive officers of the State. Indeed, he was a confidant of Gov. Morton, who placed great reliance in his judgment concerning the grave matters that affected even the perpetuity of the State and nation. In 1862, he was appointed by Gov. Morton State Paymaster, with the rank of Major, and he continued to hold the position until the close of the war in 1866. In 1868, legislative honors were again conferred upon him by his constituents, the people of Wabash and Miami Counties, awarding him the position of Senator from that district, in which he served them faithfully during the sessions of 1868-69 and 1871. In 1872, he was a prominent candidate for the office of Lieutenant Governor of the State, lacking but few votes to secure his nomination by the Republican convention. From the close of his Senatorial term until the time of his death, he was more or less occupied with public affairs, being universally respected for his sterling integrity, profound judgment and superior executive ability. He was extensively known in political and business circles, and was a member first of Whig and then of the Republican party. Religiously, he was a member of the Baptist Church in Wabash, of which he became a member in 1850, and continued during life. The interest of temperance and education were dear to him. He was a noble example of true manhood, kind, genial, cheerful, unassuming, self-educated, talented, and strictly temperate and honest. At times, his duties required of him the handling of large sums of public money, but not one cent of this did he ever appropriate directly or ndirectly to his own use.
His first wife was Susan Ingersoll, of Piketon, Ohio. She died in April; 1843, leaving three children. He was married again, October 26, 1845, to Mrs. Luther Woods, whose maiden name was Harriet Loveland, by whom he had children, some of them still living. Mrs. A. P. Ferry and Mrs. M. H. Kidd, children of Maj. Fisher, now reside in Wabash. Mr. Fisher died at his home in the city on the 26th of July, 1877, in the seventy-third year of his age.
MRS. HARRIET L. FISHER, widow of the late Stearns Fisher, whose maiden name was Harriet Loveland, daughter of Joseph and Beulah Loveland, was born near Rutland, Vt., on the 29th of December, 1809, on a farm which has since become a part of the celebrated marble quarry, which bears the name of the adjacent town. With her parents she moved to Granville, Ohio, in 1827. In 1830, she was married to Luther Woods, Esq., who died two years later. In 1844, she came to Indiana, and on October 26, 1845, she was married to the late Stearns Fisher, of Wabash. After a life of happiness with that good man, continuing through a period of more than thirty-five years, she was again, on the 26th of July, 1877, left in widowhood. In his life, Mr. Fisher had accumulated a sufficiency of this world's goods to maintain comfortably during the remainder of her life the surviving partner of his joys and sorrows. Mrs. Fisher still lives in the city of Wabash, surrounded with all that heart can wish for save that great void which eternity alone can supply.
Source: History of Wabash County, Indiana, 1884. (Paw Paw Township by Professor E, Tucker, pages 248 & 249). Chicago, Illinois. USA: John Morris, 1884.
Extracted, reformatted and submitted by: David R. Guinnup, (03/12/2009).
Alex Flora. A record of good citizenship, including three years of faithful service as a soldier of the Union during the Civil war, of steadfast integrity in all his relations with his fellow men, and of acquisition of an honorable prosperity in material things, is what distinguishes Alex Flora in addition to the fact of his long residence in Wabash County. Flora is no longer under the necessity of pursuing active labors, but lives in the enjoyment of the fruits of a well-spent life on his home place of fifty-five acres in Paw Paw Township, located on the south side of the road three miles east of Roann.
Alexander Flora was born in Wayne County, Ohio, October 16, 1840, a son of Abe and Mary (Groshon) Flora. His father was a native of Germany and his mother of Switzerland, and the record of the Groshon family in Wabash County will be found on other pages. His parents were married in New York, after coming to this country, and subsequently moved out to Ohio, rented land there, and finally came to Wabash County, where Abe Flora bought sixty acres from Ferdinand Groshon in Paw Paw Township. The land was all covered with woods, and most of the familiar pioneer conditions still existed. Deer were so plentiful in the woods about their home, that Mr. Flora's mother one day killed a deer with a hatchet. After clearing up and improving his land, Abe Flora lived there until his death, followed by his wife, and both were more than seventy years of age when they passed away. Their six children were: Alex; Edward, who went out to the war in Company B of the Forty-seventh Indiana Infantry under Captain Goodwin, and was killed in the battle of Champion Hill; Leonard; John; Ellen, who died unmarried; and Marshall.
A boy of twelve years when the family came to Wabash County, Alex Flora has a keen recollection of the journey, which was made with a one-horse wagon. He grew up on the farm which was occupied by his father, and as the oldest son a large share of home duties fell upon his shoulders. In order to get an education, he had to walk through the woods to a log schoolhouse that stood on Paw Paw creek, but it was practical experience rather than book learning that equipped him fro a useful career. Before the war he worked out at wages on different farms, and had just reached his majority when the war came on. At first call for troops he enlisted in 1861, in Company B of the Forty-seventh Indiana Infantry, and though in many engagements up and down the Mississippi Valley he was never wounded. His term of enlistment was for three years, and when the term expired he was sick in the hospital. The rest of the regiment re-enlisted but by the time he was well enough the war had closed. During his service the closest call he had was at the battle of Champion Hill, where the bullets flew around him like hail, and the ramrod of his gun was shot off.
After leaving the hospital in New Orleans Mr. Flora came back to Wabash County, and spent three months in the employ of Daniel Ward on Eel River. He then married the daughter of his employer, Eliza Ward, who died after becoming the wife of William Watts, leaving three children, Edward, Buford, and Howard. Mr. Flora married fro his second wife Susan Squires, daughter of Thomas Squires and widow of Harry Martindale, who died during the war. By her first husband Mrs. Flora had one child, Rose, now deceased, who was the wife of Oscar Caruthers. The Caruthers children are: Harry, Guy, Estelle, Blanche, Paul, Frank, and Lilly. Mr. and Mrs. Flora have the following children: William, who lives two miles south of his father's place in Paw Paw Township, and also supervises the farming operations on his father's farm, married Myrtle Merrick, and their children are Harold, Hugh, Monterey, Edith, Margaret, Kathleen, Howard, and Irene. Dora Ellen is the wife of Chauncey Mylin of Paw Paw Township, and their three children are Helen, Glenn, and Lois. Erma is unmarried and lives at home with her father. Hattie is the wife of Homer Dunfee, and their children are Verne, Houston, John S., Louise, and Leah Ruth.
After his first marriage Mr. Flora and his brother Leonard rented a farm of eighty acres from Mr. Day of Pleasant Township. Their partnership as renters continued for three years. Following his second marriage Mr. Flora moved to his wife's farm, which is now the property of Howard Squires. It has eighty acres, and is located in Paw Paw Township. The principal improvements of that estate are due to the energy of Mr. Flora, who put up buildings, tiled the low land, cleared off the woods and brush, and lived there and prospered and reared his family. His home was on that place for twenty years, until he sold to Howard Squires. Mr. Flora then bought his present place from Amos Ivans. This too has much to show as evidence of the enterprise of Mr. Flora, and all the buildings were erected under his management. Only ten acres were cleared when he took possession, and he has laid tile, put up fences, and carried on other improvements in connection with his work as a general farmer. Mr. Flora is one of the honored members of the army which fought for the union of states fifty years ago, and has membership with the Grand Army of the Republic of Roann. In politics he followed the fortunes of the party which had control of the government during the war, and has always done his best to live up to the ideals of good citizenship in every relation. Mr. Flora is a Deacon in the Paw Paw Christian Church.
Source: 1914 History of Wabash County, Indiana, pages 699 - 701.
Submitter: Linda Thompson
Joseph E. Fosbury was born in Troy, N. Y. His father , Stephen Fosbury, was a native of Canada; his mother, Sallie Fosbury, was a native of New York. Stephen Fosbury was a machinist. At the age of fourteen, Joseph E. Fosbury worked in a paper mill. In 1870, he began the trade of a barber in the city of Troy, N. Y., where he worked for four years. Thence he went to Saratoga, N. Y., where he worked two years, and then went to Cleveland, Ohio, where he remained one year. At the expiration of that time he came to Wabash, and engaged with John Logan for near two years, when Mr. Logan died. Mr. Fosbury bought Mr. Logan's shop, and has since that time had control of the business. On February 13, 1878, he married Miss Irene Smith, of Wabash. Mr. Fosbury was born on the 20th of April, 1854, and is a young man yet, well adapted by nature and training for the occupation he has chosen. His business location, in the basement of the First National Bank Block, is convenient to the public; ! and there, by his skill, courtesy and attention to business, he has succeeded in building up a very prosperous business.
Source: 1884 History of Wabash County, Indiana, page 249.
Submitter: Linda Thompson
CALVIN GANES FRUSHOUR. The name of Calvin G. Frushour is perhaps more widely known among the venerable pioneer citizens of Lagro township than that of any other man of his time, and wherever it is spoken it recalls a character not only notable for the length of his residence, but also for the sterling integrity, the steadfast industry, and the kindly qualities which have made him a distinct influence for good in his community. Mr. Frushour is owner with his daughter, Mrs. N. Harter, of a valuable farm of eighty acres in Lagro township, situated on the south side of the pike, about two and a half miles east of Urbana. He is one of the oldest, if not the oldest man, from point of residence, in this part of Wabash county.
Calvin G. Frushour, or "Cal" as he is familiarly known to his hosts of friends, was born at Winchester, Randolph county, Indiana, February 15, 1836, and has lived in Wabash county practically all his life. However, anyone not acquainted with the date of his birth would readily place it as at least ten years later than as above given. Mr. Frushour, although he has led a busy life, has grown old gracefully, and is one of the youngest old men in the county. He is a son of Andrew and Sarah (Spohr) Frushour. They were born, reared and married in the old commonwealth of Virginia. Soon after their marriage they put their goods in a big wagon, and moved over the mountains, crossing over the Ohio river and settling in the state of that name. This did not long remain their home, and they again packed their belongings into the wagon and moved to Randolph county near the eastern edge of Indiana. Two years later they again determined to make a change. The "scoop-bed wagon" was again called into service, and with it they pushed on through the wilderness until they reached Wabash county and located in Lagro township about a quarter mile east of the present residence of Calvin G. Frushour. While the family was camping out one night Andrew, the father, heard the dogs barking about a tree, up which was a catamount. Like most men of the time. Andrew Frushour had almost as much skill with his gun as with the plow and the reaping hook, and taking up his trusty old flint-lock, he brought the ' * varmint'? down with a shot between the eyes. As it was a good specimen, and he desired those at the camp to see it, he took up the carcass by the hind legs, placing it over his shoulder and brought the catamount into camp with its nose dragging on the ground. Soon after they reached Lagro township they decided upon their permanent location, but did not find time to start a building until the fall of the year. In the meantime the household continued to live in the big wagon, which had served them in their various removals towards the west. Besides their bed clothes, the two hound dogs and flint-lock gun already mentioned, they had four horses and a good set of carpenter tools. Besides the immediate family, there was a hired man. The land selected by Andrew Frushour was all covered with wood, and the nearest neighbor was about four miles away, near Lagro village. The canal at that time was just being constructed through Wabash county. In this connection one fact deserves mention. The building of a canal, unlike railroad construction, proceeded very slowly, and the force of workmen usually camp in a sort of temporary village along the right of way for several seasons before the work has proceeded so far as to justify their stage of advance. Many of the workmen therefore utilized their farm in cultivating small gardens and farms along the canal route. Andrew Frushour in this saw an opportunity to make some ready money which was then a very scarce commodity in Wabash county. He and his hired man each took a team, and secured contracts to plant corn for the canal builders, and later in the season did the harvesting. This work kept them away from home several days at a time, and the mother and children, of which there were several by this time, were left alone. Though the family had but little money and only a small store of provisions, the abundance of game in the woods practically supplied the table with fresh meat, and it was necessary to hunt only an hour or so in order to secure enough game to last a week. At the same time the wolves were numerous, and often became so bold that they would chase the dogs into the big wagon, where the family still kept house, and then stood on guard and howled throughout the long dark night. On one occasion the family, while the men folks were away, almost ran out of provisions, and for four days the mother had nothing to offer her children except baked potatoes, however, it was a clean, healthy outdoor life they were all leading, they had keen zest for any plain food, and continued to eat their potatoes with great relish.
After Andrew Frushour and his hired man had finished harvesting for the canal men, they started the construction of a log house on the eighty acres which he had bought, paying only forty dollars for the land. He designed this habitation as a temporary structure, and with the thought in view that he would in a few years probably put up a better residence, he built the log house in such a position, on the side of a sloping hill, that later it would not interfere with the building of a larger and better house on the top of the slope. In building the log house no door was constructed at first in the side of the building. One wall rested flush on the ground at the upper side of the hill, while the opposite wall, in order to be made level, rested on high piles, and steps were made and a sort of trap-door was cut in the floor to afford means of egress and entry. The principal timbers for the building were of split logs, all cut and hewed with an ax, while the roof was covered with clapboards, each four feet in length. Nails, and in fact practically all articles of iron were very scarce in Indiana at that time, and in order to secure the clapboards they laid across them long poles, to weight and tie the roof, each end of the poles being fastened with a wooden pin. Somewhat later the house was improved by the construction of a door in the side, and a more homelike appearance was given the rude habitation. In those days the most convenient grist mill was located at Goshen, in Elkhart county, and a good many miles from Lagro township. When Andrew Frushour wanted to take some grain to be ground at this mill, he put a tongue in the rear axle and wheels of his wagon, put a box upon the gear, and in that way had a much lighter vehicle for travelling over the rough roads to the mill. Gradually, however, they cleared up the land and got it under cultivation, and since those humble beginnings of seventy-five years ago many hundred rods of tile has been laid, and the eighty acres for which Andrew Frushour gave forty dollars in 1836 would now bring at least one hundred and fifty dollars an acre. On that old homestead both Andrew and Sarah (Spohr) Frushour died, she on June 7, 1853, in her forty-fourth year, and he on May 25, 1873, at the age of seventy-three. They were the parents of ten children who grew to maturity, namely: Mary Virginia; Susan, deceased; Angeline, deceased; Calvin G.; Eliza Jane, deceased: Edward; Charles; Francis, deceased; Andrew C.; and Theodore, deceased.
Calvin Frushour was six weeks old when the family moved from Randolph to Wabash county in the big wagon. At the old home place just described, and in the midst of an environment which was being rapidly changed as a result of the labors of many pioneers, he grew to manhood, and did his full share in clearing up the land. As the oldest son, from the time he was big enough to wield an ax, much of the rough work of the place fell to him, and he is one of the few survivors among the early citizens of Wabash county who can recollect actually ever sharing in the development of this region. By the time he was old enough to attend school, some eight or ten families had settled in that immediate vicinity, and their children went to school in a little log house about a mile distant by a path cut through the woods and north of the Frushour farm. The house in which school was taught had been abandoned by a settler who came out from Ohio and finally became discouraged and left the country. It was fitted up with a mud and stick chimney, and light came in through greased paper stuck over openings between the logs. For seats, rough benches were hewn out of logs, and a rough plank was placed on wooden pins driven into the wall to serve as a desk. Probably not a person in that community in that day dreamed that half a century later a comfortable bus. tightly screened against the storm, and with provisions for heat in the cold weather, would drive daily along the hard pike road, collecting the children in the morning and carrying them to school, and then in the evening taking them back to their home.
When Mr. Frushour reached the age of twenty-one, his father told him he was free to do or work as he pleased, but offered him a position at ten dollars a month to remain on the home farm, this offer was accepted, and he continued with his father for fourteen months. In that time practically every cent of his wages was saved, and this thrift gave him his first practical start in the world. About this time Mr. Frushour married Anna Brechner, whose death occurred a few years later, after the birth of two children, as follows: Lenora, wife of James Hippensteel, of Wabash county, and they are the parents of twelve children and several grandchildren; George Wilson, who married Etta Ramey, and they also live in Wabash county, and have eight children.
On April 10, 1864, Mr. Frushour married for his second wife Catharine Good. She is the daughter of Peter and Catharine Good. The only child of this marriage is Dellie. She married Professor Noble Harter, who at the time was superintendent of the Warsaw, Indiana, public schools. Later they moved to Pasadena, California, where Professor Harter became identified with the city public schools, and he died while at Pasadena, leaving his widow and twin daughters: Mary, who died in 1912, and Catharine. Both these daughters also became teachers and were connected with the schools of Pasadena. Soon after his first marriage Mr. Frushour moved to his present farm, it was then owned by his father who had acquired possession of about two hundred and forty acres in Lagro township. The only improvement on the land which Calvin Frushour came to occupy was a little log cabin, and about ten acres cleared. Then followed a number of years of hard work, industrious management, and a steady thrift, at the end of which time practically all the farm had been cleared, the old house had been remodeled and made thoroughly comfortable, much tile had been laid in the low places, and the farm was developed until in its improvements and productiveness it ranked second to none in the township. After the death of his father Mr. Frushour bought the interests of the other heirs in the eighty acre farmstead. Besides managing his farm, Mr. Frushour, who in his earlier years was an indefatigable worker, spent about fifteen years in the employ of the Wabash railroad, and was one of the crew of eleven men who did construction work of bridges, stations, and other similar work along the line between Toledo, Ohio, and Danville, Illinois. Mr. Frushour made it a point whenever possible to get home over Sunday during this employment, but in the meantime Mrs. Frushour practically had the actual supervision of the farm alone, and its gradual improvement, its yearly productive harvest, and the increasing prosperity of the family, were in no small measure due to her judgment and sagacity and untiring efforts. She and her daughter put in many days in the field, .and did work that would be a credit to any man.
After remodeling the old house and living in it for many years, Mr. Frushour in 1910 erected his present substantial eight-room modern frame residence, equipped with all.the conveniences and comforts which the best country homes of Wabash county affords, and where he and his wife expect to spend the rest of their days and enjoy the well won fruits of earlier years. Besides their three children, there are twenty- three grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren. They have also taken in and reared in their home several orphans. In fact, their friends frequently refer to the Frushour farm as the "orphans home".
This generous prosperity, all won as a result of honest toil and good management, has been used in such a way as to add to the total wealth of the community, and not alone for the benefit of his immediate family but in such a way as to make the lives of others easier and richer. Mr. Frushour is a republican in politics, and like his wife is a true Christian. They are members of the Evangelical Association.
The parents of Mrs. Frushour, Peter and Catharine Good, while not coming to Wabash county at so early a date as the Frushours, were still early residents. Both were natives of Virginia, were married in Ohio, and came to Wabash county when Mrs. Frushour, who is about ten years younger than her husband, was a child. Their location was about two miles south of Lagro. When Mrs. Frushour was seven years old her mother died, and her father later married and moved out to Kansas, where the rest of his days were spent. Mrs. Frushour was one of a family of children mentioned as follows: Jacob, deceased; Elizabeth, deceased; Nancy Ann, deceased; Catharine, Mrs. Frushour; William; John, deceased; Mary, deceased; and Frank.
Source: 1914 History of Wabash County, Indiana, Vol 2, pages 625-629.
Submitter: Ron Miller
Mike Sweeney / Cottonwood, Arizona / email@example.com
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