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Martin V. Baggott, justice, was born in Mad River Township, Montgomery County, Ohio, January 30,1837. He is a son of James and Mary (Caylor) Baggott. He, James, was a native of Virginia, (Fredericksburg,) and removed to this state in 1824, in company with one of his brothers, locating in Montgomery County, where he remained till 1854. He then removed to Osborn. He was a cooper by trade. He was twice married, having children by both wives. Our subject is a son of the second wife, and one of five who are still living. James Baggott died in January, 1863; his wife in May, 1877. Squire Baggott, as he is familiary known, spent his boyhood on the farm, and received the rudiments of his education in the common schools, which he afterwards developed by careful research and self application. At the age of nineteen he began teaching, and has followed the profession ever since, having become identified as one of the leading educators in the section. During the past eleven years, he has occupied the position of the justice of the peace in Bath Township. In 1859, he married Lousia Williams. They have four children : Vallandigham, Mary, Frances and George P., are living. Luella, deceased : besides a nephew, son of his brother, whom he adopted when only seven weeks old, John C. by name. Mr. Baggott is a member of both the Masons and Odd-fellows, to which he is fondly attached, and has held positions of honor in both. Was Master in the Masons in 1879.
Matthias W. Baker, retired farmer, was born in Bourbon County, Kentucky, December 18, 1806. He is a son of William and Mary D. (Winans) Baker, natives of Kentucky, and born August 10,1781, and May 2, 1785, respective. In 1810, he removed with his family to Fleming County, Kentucky, where he remained till 1828, following the business of teamster, hauling from Maysville to Lexington, chiefly. After coming to this state, in 1828, he followed farming. He died May 26, 1838. His wife survived till 1870, dying in her eighty-sixth year. Our subject lived with his father till 1824, at which time he came to Ohio, making his home with his uncle, Dr. Winans, of Jamestown. He went back to Kentucky, in 1825, and remained with his father one year, then returned to this county, where he has lived ever since. In the fall of 1830, he went on a place one and one-half miles west of Jamestown, on the Xenia
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pike, where he opened a farm. It was at that time a mass of fallen timber and thick underbrush. Here he labored till 1853, clearing the farm now owned by John Cooper. He then moved to within a mile of Byron on the farm he now owns, where he lived seven years. In the spring of 1860, he moved into Byron, where he kept tavern and grocery some six years. He then retired from active life, and moved into the dwelling where he now lives. He was married, August 28, 1828, to Matilda, daughter of Childs Moorman, a native a Rockbridge County, Virginia. Mr. and Mrs. Bryon are parents of four children : Mary E., born July 9,1829; Lavenia E., December 30, 1830; W. C. M., October 2, 1833; and Selathiel E. W., September 13, 1838; the latter died in Xenia, April 28, 1866, from camp diarrhoea contracted in the army, leaving a wife but no children. The remaining three are living, and all married. Mr. Baker was a hard working farmer during the greater part of his life. He is spending his latter years in the enjoyment of the fruits of his early labors.
Elias M. Brandenburg, farmer, Osborn, was born in Montgomery County, Ohio, November 15, 1825. He is a son of Aaron and Eliza (Matthews) Brandenburg, natives of Frederick County, Maryland, who came to this state in 1808 or 1809, with their patents. They were the parents of seven children : Susannah, Melissa, Elias M., Margaret, Benjamin, George W., and William L. Aaron Brandenburg was a wood-worker, working chiefly at wagonmaking, though his genius at that time allowed him to handle tools in wood in almost any department. He died in October 1855, in his sixty-second year. His wife survives, and is living with her son, Elias M. The subject of this sketch passed his boyhood in Carlisle, Ohio, and at the age of thirteen went with his father to Indiana, where he remained until he reached manhood. In November, 1849, he was married to Matilda Lewis, who died in August, 1858. Mr. Brandenburg then came back to Ohio, and in 1859 consummated his second marriage, with Mary J. Light, and then returned to Indiana, where be remained until January, 1860, following the trade of wagon-maker. He again returned to his native state, and located on the farm where he now resides. His farm consists of one hundred and twenty-four acres, which he tills chiefly to grain. Mr. and Mrs Brandenburg are active members of the Bath Presbyterian Church, and, though they have no children, take an active interest in the general good of the community at large.
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Robert Chambers, farmer, Osborn, is a native of this county, and was born October 11, 1827. Is a son of William and Elizabeth (Kirkwood) Chambers. William Chambers was a native of Ireland, but came to this country when about twelve years of age. He located in Virginia for a few years, after which he came to this county : living first on. the Samuel Andrews property, and afterwards wards buying the property where Robert now lives. Was a soldier in the war of 1812, enlisting heartily in the cause of his adopted country. Prior to coming to this state he married Elizabeth Kirkwood, of Virginia. They were parents of seven children : Jane, David, Eliza A., Mary, Margaret, Robert, and Sarah. Five of these are now living, and two, Margaret and David, deceased. When they came to the farm there were no improvements on it, or any of the adjoining lands oil the ridge. The unbroken forests were the haunts of deer and bears, and the lurking place of the wild turkey. But by hard labor, in common with other pioneers he hewed out a farm in spite of natural difficulties. Here Robert was reared, and educated in the old log school house, which stood near where Bath church now stands. The farm consists of one hundred acres, and is tilled chiefly to grain. Mr. Chambers has followed farming all his life. In 1864 he was married to Malinda C. Snyder, who died in March, 1870. His second marriage was consummated in 1.877, with Susan Forrer. They are both members of the Presbyterian Church, and respected members of society. They have no children.
Philip F. Cost, retired farmer, Osborn, was born in Frederick County, Maryland, October 20, 1809, and is a son of John and Rachael (Souder) Cost, both natives of Loudon County, Virginia. They immigrated to this state in 1817, locating in Bath Township, on the road leading from Dayton to Yellow Springs. Here they lived on a farm, and reared their family of thirteen children, nine of whom reached maturity. About the year 1840, they removed to Fairfield, where he died in 1850; his wife in 1866. Philip F. was reared on the farm, and received his education in the common schools of the time, having but slight opportunity to give to the acquiring of knowledge, as his services were required on the farm. By natural genius, however, he has been able to conduct a successful business, and accumulate a large property. He has been twice married. First, in 1829, to Jane Wolff, who bore him eight children; second, to Hannah N., widow of Joseph E. Williamson.
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Mr. Cost has followed farming all his life, though in his early manhood he was employed at coopering during the winter season, as was the custom of many at that day. Since 1817 he has lived here, with the exception of eight and one-half years in Shelby County. Two of his sons, John Philip and George T., were in the war of the rebellion. The eldest was killed at Liberty Gap in 1863, and George T. lost his right arm at Stone River; he lives now near Xenia, on the Dayton Pike. Mr. Cost lived on the old home place till seven or eight years ago, when he removed to Osborn. His farm consists of three hundred and twenty-one acres. Five of his children are now living. Mr. and Mrs. Cost are members of the Reformed Church, of which they are active and earnest workers, having the disposition both to will and to do.
Mitchell J. Ennis, general store and postmaster, Byron, was born in Sugar Creek Township, April 30, 1818, and is a son of Thompson and Sarah (Mitchell) Ennis. Thompson came to this county prior to 1800, in company with four of his brothers, John, Jeremiah, Samuel, and Jesse, and a sister. They entered lands on Sugar Creek, where they lived and reared their families. Coming from Pennsylvania, they were hardy farmers, and gave their attention to coopering, as did many other early settlers, during the winter season. According to the custom of that day, by hand distilleries they manufactured their corn into whisky. Thompson was the father of nine boys and three girls : Vincent, John, Sarah, Samuel, Elizabeth, Mary, Jeremiah, Mitchell J., Thompson, Lemuel, William, and an infant, deceased. Of this large family six are still living, and five are residents of this state. Mitchell J., was left without parents at the. early age of ten years, his mother dying when he was only five years old. After the death of his father, he lived with a farmer for two years, then with Dr. William Bell, of Bellbrook, with whom he stayed three years, and practiced in the rudiments, i, e., the art of rolling pills, etc. He then went to the city of Dayton, where he served an apprenticeship in employment of Edward M. Burr, saddler, after which he again returned to Bellbrook, where he worked at journey work, and carried on the saddlery business for three years. Here he cast his first presidential vote for William H. Harrison. He then removed to Byron with his business, where he conducted the same for eight years, then began clerking for Schaner & Wilson; then followed the goods as they passed from this firm to Folkerth & Son, and
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afterwards to Wolf &. Son, some ten years in all. At this time his health failing, he traveled through the southern part of the state selling fruit-trees, and during the winter of 1860-61, worked at his trade. In May, 1861, bought the property where he now keeps, restocked the establishment, and has continued business ever since, carrying a general line of goods. Mr. Ennis has been a happy old bachelor these many years. He is attached to the Masonic and Odd Fellows' fraternities, occupying high positions in both, being a Royal Arch Mason and a member of the Grand Lodge, I. O. O. F. Mr. Ennis is a fraternity man not alone in name, but his daily life shores that he loves the principles of these organizations.
Joseph M. Folck, retired, Osborn, is a native of this township, and was born July 9, 1824. Is a son of Daniel and Mary (Muirheide) Folck. Daniel was a son of John George Folck, who came to this state from Pennsylvania, about the year 1802 or 1803, in company with the Wolfs, Wilsons, and Heffleys, and located near where Byron now stands, each buying a large tract of land with their surplus means. Here he lived and reared his family of four boys, George, Abram, John, and Daniel, and died in 1839. He was a practicing physician during this period, and many people came from a distance to receive treatment. After his death the farm was divided, being sufficient to give each a farm. Abram, however, desired money, and in the division the old homestead fell to Daniel. Here he followed the fortunes of the farm till his death, in 1841, leaving a wife and five children, George, Joseph, John, Barbara, and Mary Ann, all of whom survive but George. After the death of his father, Joseph labored on a farm till he arrived at maturity, and then lived with his aunt, Mrs. Susan Folck, and assisted her in preparing medicine, afterward farming until the last four years, when he left the farm and removed to Osborn, where he is spending his declining years in ease and luxury. He was joined in wedlock to Barbara Ann Shigley. The family seem naturally to turn their attention to the healing art, as three generations have been practicing physicians-Dr. John George; his daughter-in-law, Mrs. Dr. Susan Folck, who died leaving no posterity; and Mrs. Dr. Barbara Folck, wife of Joseph M., who has been practicing for thirtythree years independently, besides several years in connection with Mrs. Dr. Susan Folck. During the first few years of her practice she traveled some, but for several years has given her entire attention to her extensive office practice. Mr. and Mrs. Folck are active
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members of the Methodist Episcopal Church, with which they have been connected for many years.
John Haddox is a native of Harrison County, West Virginia; born December 29, 1791; son of Nimrod and Elizabeth (Saylor) Haddox, both natives of Virginia. They immigrated to this state in 1801 or 1802, stopping one year near Chillicothe, on Deer Creek. Not being satisfied there, they moved westward, and located in this county, On a farm, where he remained till the time of his death, acting in the capacity of justice of the peace during three years of the time, and died, in 1816, from injuries received by falling from a load of hay, caused by the sudden starting of the team. His wife died the same year, leaving three children, John, Nimrod, and Mary. John Haddox was reared on the farm, receiving but little education, and that in the common schools of the new countrylog buildings, with greased paper for windows. After having attained his majority, he lived on a rented farm, and kept the family till in his twenty-fourth year, at which time he married Sallie Cox, and began life in earnest. After much hard work and shrewd management, he entered the southeast quarter of section 29, town 3, range 8, which, by the division of the county, now lies in Clarke, adjoining the county line. There he made a permanent home, and reared his family of seven children, of whole Malinda., William, John R., Sarah, George, and Maria are living, and Nimrod deceased. He continued living. on the farm till some twenty years ago, when he rented his farms, and went to Jasper County, Indiana, where he bought nine hundred acres of land, a mill, and still-house, and put his boys on the same, remaining there about eight years. With the exception of this time, he has lived in this immediate vicinity since his boyhood; and although starting in life poor, he has, by good management, strict economy, and hard labor, accumulated a large property, owning several farms in this section of the country after having given his children a good start in life. Mr. Haddox is a man of strong constitution and temperate habits, and although now nearly fourscore years and ten, he is able to attend to his business affairs and see after his farms, visiting them at least once a week. , In politics he is a staunch Republican, and says, with pride, that he ever voted a Democratic ticket. He has been instrumental in bringing about many of the improvements with which the county is now blessed.
Peter E. Hardman, farmer, was born on the farm where he now
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lives, April 1, 1824. He is a son of Peter and Sarah Edge Hardman, natives of Virginia. The early history of the parents of our subject, demands a passing notice at our hands. His father was of German descent, born in Hardy County, Virginia, but was reared to manhood in Harrison County, where he married Margaret Hacker, in whose early history a scene of horror and bloodshed, only paralleled by those of the Minnesota massacre of 1862 and 1863, was enacted. As related by them in after years, it was briefly as follows: She was eleven years old, and was at the house of a married sister, oil Hacker's Creek, near Clarksburg, Virginia, when a company of marauding Indians passed through the country and murdered the entire family, tomahawking and scalping every one of them. Margaret tried to conceal herself behind a door, while the work of death was going on, but she was soon discovered, and one of the savages gave her a blow on the side of the head, which felled her to the floor as if dead. They then proceeded to take the scalps from the heads of the entire family. They dragged little Margaret by the bair. a distance of some five hundred yards, severed her scalp and threw her over a fence, and left her to welter in her .blood, but looking back and thinking that possibly life was not extinct, one of them returned and stabbed her with his knife. The point, however, struck a rib, and it would seem that only by the direct intervention of fate was her life spared, and she the progenitor of a large family. She was left weak from the loss of blood, and was not able for some time to change her position, but finally was so far restored, as to be able to crawl in to the thick branches of a fallen tree, where she remained through the following night, in fear of the return of the dreaded enemy, after which she managed to get back to the scene of horror, at the now desolate house of her sister, where she was found and cared for. She grew to womanhood, and as we have said, was married to Peter Hardman sometime in 1798, and came to this state in 1808, and died July 20, 1815, in her thirty-ninth year. The remote cause of her death was the blow from the Indian tomahawk. She, however, bore her husband ten children, all of whom survive her. Mr. Hardman's boyhood, was spent among the mountains of his native state. He had early been apprenticed to a blacksmith, and his acquaintance with working iron and steel, became very useful to him in his new home in the west. He became a subject of divine grace as early as 1804, with so much zeal that in the course of another year he was
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licensed as a local Methodist preacher. He came here in 1808, and made a home on the east side of what is known as Tatman's Prairie. After defraying the expenses of the trip, which was by road wagon, with four horses, he had just $1.25 left. Here he lived and labored, nor did he neglect the gifts or graces of preacher and exhorter, but whenever in private dwelling or in school houses, he could get an audience on the Sabbath or week-clay evenings, there he delighted in preaching the Gospel of Christ. In October, 1815, he married for his second wife, Mrs. Sarah Edge, a widow with two children. She bore him seven children, snaking seventeen in all, besides the two of his wife's, which were adopted into the same fancily. e remained on the original farm, till 1852, when he removed to Osborn, where he spent the remainder of his life, dying the 30th day of July, 1857. His posterity consisted of seventeen children, eighty-two grandchildren, fifty-two great grandchildren, and four great, great, grand children, in all, one hundred and fifty-five souls. Peter E., the subject of this sketch, is a son of the second wife. He lived with his father until he was twenty-one, and then began cropping on the shares, having every thing furnished and he getting the one-third. After four years, he and his brother. W. R., rented the farm up to the time of the death of their father, when the property was left them by will. They continued farming together up to 1875 or 1876, since which time, Peter E. has had the entire charge of the farm of one hunched and thirty-four acres, and has, also, a two-thirds interest in one hundred and thirty-six acres near Yellow Springs, besides a house and other property in Osborn. He has acquired his competence by hard work and loaning money, which he began by loaning nine dollars. He followed the plan carefully, always living within his means, and made it a rule to have a little surplus. For some years past, he has quit heavy or regular labor in the fields. In 1848, he married Maria Clayton, who has borne hint seven children, four of whom, Sarah C., Owen P., James R. and Cassius M., are living. George W., Ellen M., and Mertie, deceased-George W., in 1852, when three years of age, of scarlet fever; Ellen, an estimable young lady of nineteen, of spinal complaint, in 1873; and Mertie, the youngest, by ten or eleven years, of membranous croup, in 1872. During the last twelve or fifteen years, Mr. Hardman has been dealing quite extensively in cattle, buying, grazing and raising.
Reuben C. Hoover, physician, Osborn, was born in Shippensburg,
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Cumberland County, Pennsylvania, June 1, 1821, and is a son of Jacob and Mary (Smith) Hoover. His father was a wagon-maker by trade, and followed that business where our subject was born. Dr. Hoover was educated at Shippensburg, and read medicine in Adams County, under Dr. Joseph M. Smith, his uncle. He attended lectures at the Jefferson Medical College, at Philadelphia., and afterward at the Pennsylvania Medical College, at the same place, where he graduated. He practiced five years, between the two courses, at. Centerville, Cumberland County, and five years at the same place after he graduated. In 1854 he came to this suite, stopping one year at Springfield, after which he came to Bath Township, where he has remained ever since, practicing in Osborn and Fairfield. In 1843 he married Catharine Smith, who bole him five children: Calvin, Margaret (Mrs. Cox), Emma, Laura, and Reuben C., ,jr. Of these, two only are living : Reuben C., M. D., who graduated in 1876, at the Cleveland Medical College; and Mrs. Cox. Calvin was a physician, also, dying at the age of thirtytwo. Dr. Hoover has now an extensive practice, and enjoys the confidence of many friends.
Simon S. Hufer, farmer, Osborn, was born in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, May 23, 1813, and is a son of Abraham and Elizabeth (Stoner) Huffer,, both natives of the same county. They moved, with their family, to this state, in 1815, and located at what has since been known as Huffersville, within a short distance of where Simon S. now lives. Abraham was a weaver and distiller, and brought a still with him from Pennsylvania, which he used in a modest way the remainder of his life. They had six soils and one daughter: John, Samuel, Abraham, Joseph, Simon S., Annie Eliza, and Daniel S. Four of them are still living-Annie E. in Illinois, the remainder in this state. He owned some seven hundred acres of laud where he lived. At an early date he built Huffer's Mill, and did a flourishing business for the time, making as many as fifty and sixty barrels of flour per day. In many ways he assisted much in the growth and -prosperity of the country. He died August 29, 1843, after having attained the age of sixty-six years. His wife survived him until the 9th of August, 1862, dying in her eighty-third year. Simon S. Huffer, as has been seen, came to this state with his parents when only two years of age, and has lived where he now resides ever since. In his early life, he followed farming, in connection with teaming, but since his marriage
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has devoted his entire attention to farming, making a specialty of raising grain. August 16, 1840, he married Maria Wise. They are parents of three children: Abraham J., born. July 5, 1842; John J., born January 22, ; and Ann Maria, born January 7, 1847. Two, John J. and Ann M., are living, she at home, he near them. Abraham died September 12, 1871. Mr. and Mrs Huffer are hale and active, spending their declining years in the enjoyment of the fruits of their early life.
Simon Koogler, retired, Osborn, was born in Beaver Creek Township, September 30, 1817, and is a son of Jacob and Kindla (Harner) Koogler. He was a native of Pennsylvania, she of Germany, coining to this country when about five years old. Both immigrated to Ohio in 1794, with their parents, and stayed for protection in the fort called Columbia, a short distance above Cincinnati, for some time. They then located where Camp Dennison no w is, iv Clermont County. In the year 1800, they moved to Beaver Creek Township, where they located on a farm, and there Jacob and Kindla (who was his step-sister) were married in 1802, being the fifth couple who -were joined in wedlock within the limits of this county. There they lived the rest of their lives, and reared their family of ten children: Catherine, George, Samuel, Mary, Solomon, Mathias, Sarah, Simon, Jacob and John. All are living but Sarah and Mathias, and all residents of this state, except one, who is in Iowa. They are all farmers, each owning a good farm. She died November 27, 1858, aged seventy-five years; he died on September 15, 1870, at the advanced age of eighty-three years. Simon has been a farrier all his life, living on. the homestead until he was fifty-seven years old ; he then moved to Osborn and retired from active life, having been afflicted with rheumatism for the past ten years. In 1839 he married Elizabeth Parsons, a native of Rockbridge County, Virginia. They are parents of nine children Jacob H., Jane, David P., Sarah C., Isabella P., Eliza J., John W., Elizabeth E.; and Annie L. Six are living; two, Jane and Eliza J., died in infancy. . Jacob H., lied in the army, a member of the One Hundred and Tenth Ohio Volunteer Infantry. Of the remaining members, there are four who now reside in this county; one in Madison county, and one in the state of Nebraska. Mr. and Mrs. Koogler are members of the German Reformed Church, with which they have been connected for forty years, trying to live consistent, Christian lives. In politics he has always been a staunch
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Republican. The family on Mrs. Koogler's side have been prominent in the wars of the country. Her grandfather was in the revolution, her father in the war of 1812, and two sons, Jacob H. and David P., in the rebellion. David P. was a member of the Fifth Ohio Cavalry.
John Louck, grocer, Fairfield, was born in York County, Pennsylvania, January 12, 1813, and is a son of George and Catherine (Hoffman) Louck, both natives of Pennsylvania.. The family were originally from Alsace, Germany. John's grandfather came to this country before the revolution, and was a. member of the American army. George Louck died at Baltimore, Maryland. His wife married again, but after the death of her second husband, came to this state, and died at Spring Hill, Champaign County, in August, 1874. John Louck spent his boyhood with his father, who was a butcher, assisting in his work. In 1821, went to Baltimore, where his father died in 1826. He afterwards went into the country, near Hanover, Pennsylvania., where his grandfather and an uncle lived, and made his home with them on a farm. He learned the trade of shoemaking, but not being satisfied with the business, he engaged in the. butchering business, which he had learned from his father, and in 1835 came to Ohio, locating at. Fairfield, where he has since remained, with the exception of about six months in 1844, when he went west. and bought laud, but becoming sick soon after arriving there, he decided to return to the valley of the Mad River. After coming to the state he teamed for a year and then opened a butcher shop. Afterwards farmed for several years, and on returning from the west in 1844, opened a shoe shop. In 1854 he was elected treasurer of Greene County for a term of two years, and in some unaccountable way was $2,480 short at. the end of his term, which he promptly paid, taking nearly all the property he owned. The first house he ever owned he sold to pay a security debt. Of late, however, he has been more successful, owning the property where he carries oil business and the house where he lives, together with some other property. During the past eleven years, he has been engaged in the grocery business at Fairfield. For the past forty years Mr. Louck has been au auctioneer in connection with his other business, being one of the best. known criers in this section of country. In 1833 he was married to Elizabeth Burk. They are parents of eight children, Lucy Ann, Catharine, Mary, Margaret, John, and Laura, living; George and Christiana, deceased. Mr.
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Louck came from Pennsylvania with a team through the then almost unbroken forest, and although he started on the 1st of May, he frequently encountered snow-storms among the mountains. He spent seventeen days on the road. For a number of years past Mr. Louck has been identified with the pioneers of this and adjoining counties, as the leader of the far-famed Old Folk's Choir. He has held the office of constable tell or eleven years, and at present (1880) is township clerk. These opportunities, together with his genial nature, have made him one of the best known men in the county.
Peter Mitman, retired, is a native of York County, Pennsylvania, born February 12, 1810, and is a son of Jacob, and Magdalena (Herring) Mitman, of Pennsylvania. He was a farrier, and removed to this state, in 1838, locating near Fairfield, where he spent the remainder of his life. They were parents of ten children, four of whom are now living. He died about the year 1859, at stn advanced age. His wife preceded him to her last resting place some five years. Our subject was reared on the farm, and received his education in the common schools of that age, which, though limited, he afterward developed by careful study, fitting himself for successful business operations. In 1833, while a single man, allured by the glowing reports of the west, he, in company with two other men started on a pedestrian tour through Ohio. Coming to Pittsburg, thence down the Ohio River to Cincinnati, then again on foot by way of Dayton through this section, stopping over night at Fairfield, thence to Columbus, Wooster and Canton, to Trumbull County, intending to call on an acquaintance who had gone there sometime previous : not finding him, they continued their journey through Columbiana County, back to Pittsburg and home again, making the round trip in five weeks, his entire expenditures amounting to $24.00. In 1837, the times being hard in Pennsylvania, and remembering the beautiful valleys of Ohio he had seen four years before, he again started for Ohio, this time having his wife and child, and his entire effects on a one horse wagon. He came over mountains, through unbroken forests, with untiring energy, till he reached this county and located near Fairfield. The following spring he rented a large farm in Montgomery County, as his father was coming with five head of horses. Here they worked together one year, after which his father bought the farm where Lewis C. Mitman now lives, which he sold to Peter, and he
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in turn to his son. Starting in life poor, Mr. Mitman labored hard with marked success to gain an independence in this world. At the same time, he has always devoted a portion of his means to the building up of churches and other institutions, for bettering the condition of society. He and his wife are members of the Lutheran Church. He is the father of four children, Rebecca, Sarah, Lewis C., and Ann Maria, living; and William O., deceased. Mr. Mitman has filled the office of trustee for many years, and in 1870 was land appraiser for his precinct..
Henry H. Rockafield, farmer, Fairfield, was born in this township, October 6,1836. Is a son of John and Susan E. (Cost) Rockafield, the former a native of Frederick County, Maryland, who spent his youth in three states, Maryland, Virginia, and Pennsylvania, working in coal mines, chopping wood on the mountains, and other pursuits peculiar to that country. Came to this state about the year 1820, and engaged at work with Mr. Cost, afterward his father-in-law. After some years he married Susan E. Cost, and went on to a tract of land belonging to her father, which, in the course of time, he cause in possession of. Here he labored for many years, and reared his family of thirteen children, ten of whom are now living. he died in July, 1859, and was buried on the farm, where he had spent the greater part of his life. His wife died ten years previous. Our subject was reared on this farm, and received his education in the common schools. After the decease of his father, he farmed the place till 1869, at which time the youngest heir became of age, and the farm was sold. he then went to German Township, Montgomery County, where he purchased land, on which he lived nine years, and then sold and came back near his birthplace, buying the property on which he lives. He has been twice married ; first in 1857, to Rebecca Carter, who bore him four children, and died in 1868. The second marriage was consummated in in 1869, with Mary Ann Haller. They have one boy as a result of this union. Mr. Rockafield served his country four months in the One Hundred and Fifty-Fourth Ohio National Guard.
Edward F. Searl, physician, Osborn, was born in Candagua County, New York, September 27, 1841. Is a son of Harman and Sophia (Skieff) Sears, natives of Massachusetts, where the greater portion of the family still live. In 1841, Harman Searl removed to Portage County, Ohio, where he still resides. Dr. Sear] was reared at the village of Windom, Portage County, where be received the
734 - HISTORY OF GREENE COUNTY.
rudiments of an education under Professor Pickett, which he afterward developed at Hiram, under Professor James A. Garfield. At the age of eighteen he went to Cleveland to prosecute his medical studies, having studied under Drs. Reed and Bentley, of Ravenna, Portage County. Here he remained two years and a half, and graduated in 1861. He then practiced in Huron two years, and in May, 1863, removed to Osborn, where he still remains, and enjoys a fair practice. He has made his practice and friends by attention to business, and a quiet, unobtrusive manner. In 1866, he married Margaret, daughter of James Campbell. They are parents of five children, James C., Harry O., Charles W., Lee Corbin, and Edward D., all living but Harry O.. Dr. Searl started in life with little but a desire to do and be something, and by indomitable will, perseverance, and courage, he has attained a position worthy the efforts of other young men.
Isaac Strohm, farmer, Dayton, is a native of Pennsylvania; born. December 11, 1810; son of Henry and Mary (LeFevre) Strohm, the former a native of Germany, who came to this country in 1769, his father dying on the voyage. After reaching maturity he followed farming chiefly as his life's vocation. Mary LeFevre was a descendant of the Huguenots, who fled from persecution in their native country, and came to the land of free speech, freedom of the press, and religious liberty. Isaac Strohm was reared on the farm, and educated in the common subscription schools of that day. Came to this state in 1835, locating in Butler County, where he taught school about eight months, and clerked at Rossville, now Hamilton, ten months, then removed to this county, and began clerking for John Kneisley, at Kneisley's mill, where he remained eight years, at the. expiration of which time he built the house where he has since resided, spending, however, the greater part of his time away from home, clerking at a mill in Cincinnati, also at the Lafayette Bank for two years. In 1850, he went to the Treasury Department, where he remained till 1855, at which tine he was allowed to withdraw on political grounds. He was, however, the confidential clerk of Secretary Corwin, during his last three months in the Treasury Department, and is his only biographer, so far as is known. After leaving this position, he was appointed engrossing clerk of the Thirty-Fourth Congress, which he held till the thirty-fifth came in and informed him that his politics were not of the right color; was restored at the coming in of the Thirty-
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Sixth Congress, and held the position of chief enrolling and engrossing clerk to the end of the first session of the Forty-Fourth. Congress, sixteen consecutive years, when he was again asked to retire on political grounds, since which time he has been attending ' to his private affairs. Iii 1841, he married Margaret Guthrie, who died Dec. 8, 1869. They are parents of five children. Gertrude, Elizabeth, Mary E., and Harry L. are living, and Edwin deceased.
William Wilson, retired, Fairfield, was born in this township, October 14, 1812. Is a son of William and Catharine (Heffley) Wilson. The former vas 'a native of Kentucky, and came to this county about the year 1800; his wife about 1805, she being a native of Maryland. Soon after his arrival he entered land in the eastern part of this township, which he began to improve, but was called into the service in the war of 1812, where he contracted a disease which carried hint off about three mouths before the birth of his son William. After his death his wife left the farm, and made her home with his father, Michael Wilson, where she died six months after the birth of William. Our subject continued living with his grandfather on the farm till he was seventeen years old, and then went to learn the blacksmith trade with Jacob Griner, at Byron; here he spent three years as an apprentice, and after one year's work as a journeyman, bought the shop and tools, and carried on business for himself, remaining there eighteen years; after which he sold the shop, and bought a small farm near there, which he held till 1855, and then traded for a larger farm, about a mile and a half northeast of Byron, where he remained till April, 1872, at which time he removed to Fairfield. In May, 1834, he married Elizabeth Watts. They had ten children, two of whom survive. His wife departed this life March 13, 1877. Mr. Wilson is a member of the Reformed Church, with which he has been connected forty-four years, and is one of the oldest resident children of this township, having spent his entire life here, nearly sixty-eight years, and has witnessed the change from a wilderness filled with deer, turkeys, and other game, to fertile fields and fruitful orchards, with attendant changes in society, and the condition of schools, churches, etc. Mr. Wilson held the office of justice of the peace while at Byron, nearly two terms, resigning, the last term, on account of the amount of his private business.
Samuel F. Woodward, retired, Osborn, is a native of Spring Township, Crawford County, Pennsylvania. He spent his boyhood on a
736 - HISTORY OF GREENE COUNTY.
farm, and received the rudiments of an education in the country schools, which he afterwards developed in the academy at Kingsville, Ashtabula County, Ohio, where he graduated in the academical course in 1853. Began teaching during the winter and attending school in the summer in 1850, while yet in his twentieth year, teaching in his native township during the winters of 1850-2; the following year near Girard, Eric County, Pennsylvania, and during the winter of 1853-4 he taught mathematics at Kingsville, filling a vacancy caused by the absence of a teacher. In 1854 he came to Ohio, intending to finish his education at Antioch College, at that time just starting, under the presidency of Horace Mann. But Antioch not yet teaching the branches he 'wished to pursue, he went to teaching in the public schools of Montgomery County, and continued teaching in Montgomery and Greene Counties till the spring of 1862, during which time, in 1856, he married Mary C., daughter of the late Alexander Sloan, of Montgomery County, to which fact may be attributed his not finishing his intended course. In 1854, having saved a portion of his salary, he indulged in a trip to Iowa, where he invested his surplus in Government land, and again in 1856, he made a similar investment, both purchases amounting to four hundred and twenty-four acres. After he quit teaching, in 1862, he became a fruit-tree merchant, in which business he continued till the fall of 1874, twelve years. During most of the time his yearly business ran from twenty to forty thousand dollars, and at the close of each year he found that he had uniformly made a little advance on his capital in trade. In 1875, feeling the strain upon his nervous system occasioned by the pressure of business, he ceased active operations. Since that time he has been attending to his investments, and making improvements on his property, having built the finest residence in Osborn, as well as fitting up his farms.
Daniel Wolfe; retired. Byron, was born in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, December 6, 1798, and is a brother to Simon Wolfe. (See sketch.) Daniel came to this state with his father, when only a child. After growing to manhood, he followed farming, in connection with distilling, as was customary at that time. For many years past, however, he has farmed exclusively. March 30, 1824, he married Rosanna Kershner. They are parents of ten children, four living, William, Christina, Barbara Ellen, and Rosa; Simon, Margaret, Anna E., John M., Sarah M., and Thomas, deceased.
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Mr. Wolfe has lived where he now resides since he first came to the state, and he and his wife have been together nearly fifty-seven years. Mr. Wolfe enjoys fair general health, though not able to move around with ease and freedom. Mrs. Wolfe is active, and enjoys excellent health for a lady of her years-nearly seventy-five. Two of their children live in this state, and two in Indiana. Mr. and Mrs. Wolfe are members of the German Reformed Church, to which they have been connected for three score years.
Simon Wolfe, retired, was born in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, March 14, 1805, and is a son of John and Christina (Idenire) . Wolfe. His father was a native of Pennsylvania, and his mother of Germany. They immigrated to this state, in 1807, locating in Bath Township, part of the. laud on which they settled, being now in the village of Byron. The land at that time was nearly all covered with timber. He was a tailor by trade, and followed the business 'all his life. Soon after coming to this state, one of those episodes, then so frequent, but now so rare, was enacted, in which they were the victims, in common with several of their neighbors. A party of masked men entered the house of several of the citizens, robbing them of all the valuables within their reach. They came into the house of John Wolfe, and holding a pistol at his head, demanded the key to the chest in which be kept his money. They then ransacked the trundle-bed, in which Simon and his sister were sleeping, thinking that part of the treasure was hidden there, and of course, throwing the children around promiscuously in the meantime. It happened that the eldest son, and a Mr. Sidenstick were sleeping in an adjoining room, and Mr. Sidenstick climbed to the top of the house, and parting the clapboards, which were laid on with cross poles to hold them in their places, made his escape. The watch on the outside saw him, after he had started away and gave the alarm. They then broke the chest open with a flat-iron, and hurrily took all the money-some four hundred dollarstogether with other articles of value, and made their escape. They robbed Dr. Folck and several others the same night. One of the gang was afterwards identified by a young lady, and he only, Jacob Kent by name, was arrested and placed in jail at Xenia. On the day set for trial, however, one of the bailiff's accidentally discharged a pistol, the ball taking effect in Kent's shoulder, preventing the trial. He afterwards escaped from jail and fled to Canada, where he was seen some years later. John Wolfe was the father of ten
738 - HISTORY OF GREENE COUNTY.
children, Mary, John, Jacob, George, Daniel, Henry, Sarah, Simon, Elizabeth, and Louis. Three only are now living, Sarah, Mrs. Durst of Dayton, aged ninety-three; Daniel, now eighty-two, and Simon seventy-five. Our subject has .followed farming all his life in connection with distilling, which he carried on in earlier years. He was married, in 1828, to Anna Kershner. They are parents of four children : three survive. One daughter died at the age of nineteen. Mrs. Wolfe died July 9,1875. Mr. Wolfe is still active and hearty, and has just returned (September, 1880) from a trip to the west, visiting relatives in Kansas. He describes the first school he ever attended, as being a log structure with dirt floor: large cracks were left between the logs, and these covered with greased paper served as windows.