GEN. WILLIAM H. MARTIN, [pages 227-229] now living in retirement at No. 115 South Dudley street, Dayton, Ohio, was born near Boston, Mass., September 13, 1830. His parents, Edward and Betty Martin, were also natives of Massachusetts, and were respectively of German and Irish descent. The father died two months before the birth of our subject, and when the latter was but two years of age he was bereft of his mother. Of the four sons and three daughters born to Edward and Betty Martin, all are now deceased, excepting William H., and of the sons, who were all seafaring men, John was governor of one of the South sea islands under the British crown at the time of his death, Joseph died on an East India island on a return trip from Egypt, and James was lost at sea; of the daughters, Elizabeth, wife of Capt. Thomas M. Fulton, sailed with her husband four times around the world and died in San Francisco, Cal.; Mary E. was married to Edward Deering, and died in Portsmouth, N. H.; and Sarah, wife of a Mr. Mapes, died in a Saint Louis, Mo.
While yet a mere boy, William H. Martin ran away from his adopted home and followed the sea for two or three years as a cabin boy, but finally left his vessel at a seaport in Nova Scotia, where he attended school for two winters and worked at farming during the summer months. He then returned to Boston and attended night school for several years. In 1847 he was employed by the Boston & Worcester Railroad company, and in 1850 went to Central America with a crew employed to construct the Panama railroad; six months later he returned north to New York, visited Boston, then again returned to New York, and at Delaware, that state, was employed on the New York & Erie railroad. In 1851 he was made a conductor, a position he held nearly three years; in July, 1853, he came to Cincinnati, Ohio, with Major Seymour; made his first visit to a slave state, Kentucky, but was dissatisfied, and returned to Cincinnati, where he entered the employ of the Cincinnati, Hamilton & Dayton Railroad company. He located his home in Dayton, and continued with this company until 1881, having a leave of absence during the Civil war.
On the night of April 14, 1861, Mr. Martin signed enlistment papers, in Dayton, in the First Ohio volunteer infantry, and went at once to Columbus. He was soon appointed color-sergeant of his regiment, and carried the regimental flag through the three-months service, and saw active service at Vienna and Bull Run. In the latter battle he won his first promotion for gallant conduct on the battlefield. In the excitement of the struggle, when the Union troops were sorely pressed, the regiment became separated from its color-bearer, who had advanced nearer to the enemy than the remainder of his regiment. This fact was noticed and reported by the brigade staff of Gen. R. C. Schenck, and by order of President Lincoln, Sergt. Martin was promoted to be assistant quartermaster-general of his brigade, and ordered to report to Gen. A. S. Piatt, commanding the mountain department of Virginia. He was to rank as captain, but a year passed before he received official notice of this action. After a service of four months he received an honorable discharge. He was at once tendered the colonelcy of the Fourteenth Missouri, declined acceptance, but accepted the lieutenant-colonelcy of the Seventy-fifth Ohio; but this regiment was soon afterward consolidated with the Seventy-first Ohio, which left him a supernumerary, and he retired in January, 1862, and resumed his old place as conductor on the C., H, & D. road.
But these were stirring times, and Col. Martin, in July, 1862, recruited company A, Ninety-third Ohio volunteer infantry, many enlistments being made with the distinct understanding that Col. Martin should remain with his men. Two hours after his muster-in as captain of this company, he received his commission from President Lincoln, before noticed, for his gallant services on the battlefield of Bull Run, but this he was forced to decline, owing to the conditions on which his company had been organized. The Ninety-third regiment was assigned to the Twentieth army corps, under Maj.-Gen. McCook, army of the Ohio, and was at the battle of Perryville, Ky., against Kirby Smith; was on the flank of the Union army at Dry Ridge, near Harrodsburg; was next at Antioch church, Tenn.; next for two days at Triune, Tenn., fighting Hardee; next, at the battle of Stone river, where the regiment suffered severely— Capt. Martin acting as lieutenant-colonel, as he had indeed done almost from the beginning. Here he was shot through the body, a minie ball entering the left clavicle and passing out through the shoulder blade, barely missing the main artery of the neck. While being treated in hospital, Capt. Martin was promoted to major, in February, 1863, and to lieutenant-colonel in March; in April he returned to his regiment with his wound yet unhealed, which was aggravated by the exercise required in mounting and riding his horse; he was granted a furlough, however, which was extended until August, 1863, when he rejoined his regiment. At the battle of Chickamauga, Col. Hiram Strong received a fatal wound, and Lieut.-Col. Martin assumed command of the regiment. While here leading a charge against a battery he was struck in the leg by a spent ball, which brought him to the ground, and this fall tore open the old wound; but he tenaciously commanded his regiment until the battle was ended. It was found necessary to extract from the old wound twenty-four pieces of bone at different operations, and the Colonel, on two or three occasions, tendered his resignation, believing that he would never again be fit for service, but each resignation was peremptorily rejected. He was granted a leave of absence, however, and on his return to Dayton a consultation of Cincinnati and Dayton surgeons was held, resulting in the removal of fifteen splinters of bone from the wound at one time. Soon after this the Colonel again sent in his resignation, but, receiving no response for several months, he decided to return to the front, and while en route received, at Chattanooga, the acceptance of his resignation. In May, 1865, he was honored with a commission as brevet brigadier general.
On returning to Dayton he was incapacitated, through his wounds, from engaging in any business for several months, but finally accepted a position as government store-keeper at Dayton, and held the position for five years; in 1873 he was appointed chief of police, held the position two years, and then resigned. As a testimonial of the esteem in which their chief was held, the police force of Dayton presented the General with a fine gold-headed cane on his retirement. During all these years of varying fortune, his position on the Cincinnati, Hamilton & Dayton railroad was always open to him, and on the publication of a news item of his resignation as chief of police, the superintendent of the railroad company telegraphed him that his old train was ready for him; he thereupon resumed his former position, and remained on the road until 1881, as has already been stated.
In 1881 Gen. Martin went to northwest Minnesota, leaving a valuable home on Fifth street, Boston, which he still owns. He purchased a quantity of railroad land in Minnesota, on which he resided until November, 1895, when he returned to Dayton to pass the remainder of his life in retirement, although he still owns a fine farm in Minnesota.
Gen. Martin was most happily united in marriage, at Dayton, in 1854, with Miss Henrietta Pierce Carpenter, whose parents settled in the city in 1813. Her father, Thomas G. Carpenter, was born in Pennsylvania in 1802, and was a builder by occupation; her mother, who bore the maiden name of Hannah E. Heitman, was a native of Maryland, born in 1803. The only child born to the General and his wife, was named Frank P., and died November 4, 1860, at the age of five years, eight months and twenty days.
Gen. Martin has taken all the degrees in the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, and all the degrees in Masonry excepting the thirty-third; he still holds membership in lodge and chapter in Dayton and Cincinnati; is a member of Old Guard Post, G. A. R.; of the Union Veteran Legion, and of the Ohio division of the Loyal Legion. The religious relations of Mr. and Mrs. Martin are with the Methodist Episcopal church. In politics Gen. Martin is an uncompromising republican, although in his earlier years he was a democrat, but found occasion to change his political views at the ballot box in 1852. Gen. Martin's courage upon the field, as well as at the head of the police department and in the discharge of his railroad duties, has been one of his marked characteristics; and his splendid services with Dayton's favorite regiment, the old Ninety-third, have always endeared him to the people of this city. He is held in the warmest regard by all who have watched his varied, but uniformly honorable, career.
OSCAR F. DAVISSON, [pages 229-230] a prominent member of the Dayton bar, was born in Preble county, Ohio, on June 12, 1851, and is a son of Josiah and Hannah (Foos) Davisson.
His grandfather, also Josiah Davisson, was a pioneer of Preble county, whither he removed from Virginia in 1812, after having liberated a large number of slaves, then owned by him. He was a soldier of the Revolutionary war, and for gallant service upon the field of battle during that struggle was appointed sheriff of Rockingham county, Va. (then comprising all of what is now the state of West Virginia), by Patrick Henry, governor of Virginia. Mr. Davisson's death occurred in Preble county on September 9, 1825, in his eighty-first year.
Jacob Foos, the maternal grandfather, was a native of Pennsylvania, and owned a farm near what is now Fairmount park, Philadelphia. He was an artilleryman during the Revolution. Some time before the twenties of this century he removed to Ohio, settling in Warren county, whence he removed to Preble county in 1822, dying in that county on August 7, 1842, in his sixty-first year.
Josiah Davisson, father of Oscar F., was born in Rockingham county, Va., and came to Ohio in 1812 with his parents. For many years he was a prominent citizen of Preble county, holding the office of justice of the peace for over thirty years. He was a man of more than ordinary attainments, having been given a good education, and for years was in a manner judicial officer for all the northern portion of his county. His death occurred in 1863.
The mother of Oscar F. was born near Waynesville, Warren county, Ohio, on February 13, 1819, and removed with her parents to Preble county in her third year. She lived to the ripe age of seventy-seven years, five months and two days, her death occurring on July 15, 1896. She was one of the most widely known women in Preble county, and was an important factor in the development of that county. She was a strong character, and was always in the front rank of those advocating needed reforms and improvements for the benefit of mankind. She was endowed by nature with a very high order of executive ability, was a wise counselor, and eminently a woman of affairs. She was generous to the poor, and kind and sympathetic with those in distress. Her marriage occurred on May 12, 1846, and she survived her husband almost thirty-three years, and left the following children: Francis M., Amelia E., Sarah A., all of Preble county, and Oscar F. and Dr. E. C., of Dayton.
Oscar F. Davisson was reared on the farm in Preble county, where he attended the common In 1870 he entered the National normal at Lebanon, Ohio, and was there graduated in 1874. He then entered the law department of the university of Michigan, at And Arbor. In 1875 he came to Dayton and entered the law office of Gunckel & Rowe as a student, and was admitted to the bar on January 2, 1877. He remained with the above firm until the first of the following June, and then opened an office and engaged in the general practice of law by himself. From the beginning Mr. Davisson met with success in his profession, and year by year his practice grew until he took rank among the foremost attorneys of the city. His business is general and civil practice, and he is attorney for numerous important corporations. As a lawyer Mr. Davisson is able and thorough, strong in argument, resourceful and aggressive, and has met with unvarying success. As a citizen he is progressive and enterprising, and ready to lend his aid and endorsement to movements having for their object the improvement and benefit of the community. He is a member of the Masonic fraternity, in which he has attained the thirty-second and knight templar degrees. In politics he is a republican, but is in no sense a partisan, and has never held nor sought public office.
Mr. Davisson was married in Dayton on June 18, 1889, to Jessie M. Leach, who was born in Pittsburg, Pa., and is the daughter of Richard T. and Mary Ann Leach, residents of Dayton. The children of this marriage are Richard and Marian.
WlLLIAM L. CATEN, [pages 230-231] senior member of the firm known as the Southern Ohio Coal company, in Dayton, Ohio, was born in Syracuse, N. Y., August 29, 1861, receiving his earlier education in Gloversville, Fulton county, in the same state, and graduated from the Saint Lawrence university, Canton, N, Y., in the scientific course, in 1883. For a short time he was engaged in Goshen, Ind., in the lumber business, but in 1884 came to Dayton as the manager of the Southern Ohio Coal company, which corporation ceased to exist in 1892. Mr. Caten and his brother, Frederick, then purchased the business and are still conducting it under the old firm name, operating four places of business in [he city, handling all varieties of fuel, and giving employment to forty men. In politics Mr. Caten is a republican.
Frederick Caten, the junior partner, was born in Blossburg, Pa., May 21, 1866, and was educated at the Clinton Liberal institute, Fort Plain, N. Y., from which he graduated, in the scientific course, in 1885. Immediately thereafter Mr. Caten came to Dayton and became associated with his brother in the Southern Ohio Coal company, but in 1890 returned to Gloversville, N. Y., and was there engaged in the manufacture of glove leather for four years, when he disposed of his interest in the business and returned to Dayton to rejoin his brother William.
Frederick Caten was united in marriage December 8, 1891, in Cortland, N. Y., with Miss Anna B. Cordo, the union being blessed with one child—Mary Louise.
WILLIAM EARNSHAW, D. D., [pages 231-233] deceased chaplain of the soldiers' home at Dayton, Ohio, was born in Philadelphia, Pa., May 12, 1828, and was the third son of George and Eliza Earnshaw, who had a family of seven sons and two daughters.
William Earnshaw was carefully reared within the pale of the Methodist Episcopal church, and his early years were passed in fitting himself for the ministry. At the age of twenty-five, in 1853, he joined the Baltimore conference and entered upon his duties as an itinerant minister, and for one year his first charge was at Warriors' Mark; the next two years he was stationed at Gettysburg, and the following two at Hancock, Md. His fourth charge was at Mercersburg, Pa., for two years, and his last conference charge was at Shippensburg Station, Pa., in which he was entering on his second year, when he enlisted, April 16, 1861, in response to the president's first call for volunteers. He was assigned to the Forty-ninth Pennsylvania infantry and employed for several months in home guard duty, was then commissioned chaplain of his regiment, served until the close of the war, and thereafter continued his work of love and devotion until September, 1867.
Chaplain's Earnshaw's service was first with the army of the Potomac, and he was present at the second battle of Bull Run, at Fredericksburg, Chancellorsville and Gettysburg; but after the enemy was driven out of Pennsylvania and Maryland, he was transferred to the army of the Cumberland, where he served under Maj.-Gen. George H. Thomas, whose cordial friendship and support he earned by his untiring zeal in the performance of duty. While in the service Mr. Earnshaw was present, as a non-combatant, on nineteen battle fields, and, after the final surrender, was appointed by Gen. Thomas as superintendent of cemeteries at Stone River and Nashville; subsequently this appointment was so enlarged as to include the national cemeteries at Fort Donelson, Shiloh, Corinth and Memphis. In the presence of thousands of unreconstructed rebels, and of women and children who were imbued with the idea that secession was just and the northern soldiers usurpers, this duty was most arduous; yet. in the face of insult and intimidation and personal danger, the bodies of 22,000 fallen Union soldiers were gathered from their shallow, temporary graves, decently interred, and carved headboards were placed at each grave—many, however, being marked "unknown."
About the time Mr. Earnshaw had completed this serious task, the national military home was established near Columbus, Ohio, for which, from many applicants for the position, with strong credentials, Mr. Earnshaw was appointed chaplain on the sole recommendation of Gen. Thomes, which read, "This is the .best chaplain I have known during the war." Mr. Earnshaw entered at once upon his duties, and when the home was transferred from Columbus to Dayton, continued as its chaplain, and was the only one known to over 3,000 veterans who died and were buried under his ministrations, Hon. L. B. Gunckel has said that, after watching him for eighteen years, he is not sure "they could have made a better selection had they searched the whole army." But the exposures of camp and field, and nearly six years of hard labor, had left their impress upon the physical constitution of Mr. Earnshaw. A short respite—the first he had ever asked for—and a trip to the south afforded him temporary relief; but death finally claimed him on the afternoon of July 17, 1885, his last message being, "Tell the veterans I love them all." Grizzled old soldiers and youthful employees wept alike, as for a father, and they felt that no truer friend of mankind had ever lived. The funeral services were conducted at the home chapel, concluding with the Masonic ceremony of transferring the ring from father to son—William, the eldest son, being the heir to the emblem the father had so worthily worn for years. The remains were followed to their final resting place in Woodland cemetery by a large number of citizens, soldiers, organizations and civil societies. For a time the home flags were displayed at half-mast, offices were closed and business entirely suspended.
In the eulogy pronounced over his dead body it was said by the orator: "On the eighth of June last, it was my sad privilege to confer with him and to listen to his words of religious faith and hope. I repeat them for the comfort of his friends and for the honor of his Master. He said, 'Feeble as I am, it is not certain that I shall not recover, although I do not expect to. I wish to make all practicable preparations for the event which I believe is near. I am not alarmed about dying. I have not been as good as I should have been, but my hope is in the Lord Jesus Christ, who saved me in my boyhood and who has been with me ever since. He will not desert me now. Perhaps I am too cheerful and exuberant about it. I have no fears whatever. The quiet, beautiful resting-place in Woodland cemetery awaits me. I look back over my life with the peculiar satisfaction that I have been able to do something for my fellow-men and for Christ.' To his wife he said: 'Dear mother, you were never willing to let me die; but can you give me up now? I am going —glory, glory.' These were his last words."
Chaplain Earnshaw was in appearance tall and graceful; of military pose and bearing, he looked rather more martial than ministerial; yet he never sank the minister into the soldier, nor lost the soldierly bearing in the minister. He was the soul of honor, truth and nobility, and in all undertakings was earnest, laborious and persistent. Eminent positions came to him unsought. He was grand chaplain of the National Grand Army of the Republic, and also its commander-in-chief, and was the first person below the rank of major-general to hold this office. He was also, as has been seen, eminent as a Mason, and was a member of several local organizations.
Mrs. Margaret A. Earnshaw, widow of Chaplain William Earnshaw, D. D., was born at Warriors' Mark, Huntingdon county, Pa., January 28, 1833, and was educated in its public and private schools. Her parents, Benjamin and Rebecca (Wilson) Hutchison, were also natives of Huntingdon county, the father being a farmer, and both parents died at the family homestead in Warriors' Mark. The parents of Mrs. Earnshaw were of Irish and German descent; the father was accidentally killed at the age of fifty-eight years, while the mother lived to the advanced age of ninety years. Of their seven children, three are still living at this writing.
The marriage of Mr. and Mrs. Earnshaw took place in Warriors' Mark, October 10, .1855. From the opening of the Civil war until 1864, Mrs. Earnshaw lived under the parental roof, and then joined her husband at Murfreesboro, and for twenty-one days was shut up in the fortifications of that city. She remained at the south until the chaplain had completed his work, witnessed a number of battles, and then accompanied her husband to Ohio, occupying the chaplain's house, first at Columbus and then at Dayton, and encountering her sad affliction at the latter place, as narrated above. To Mr. and Mrs. Earnshaw there were born five children, viz.: Minnie W., wife of B. F. Hershey, of Dayton, a biography of whom will be found on another page; William B., for the past eighteen years secretary of the Dayton Malleable Iron-works, and married to Miss Louise Stockstill, of Dayton; Margaret H., married to Dr. Grube, a practicing physician of Greenville, Ill.; Frederick S., who died in his fifteenth year, an intelligent lad of great promise; and Louis Putnam, a practicing physician of Dayton.
Mrs. Earnshaw is not altogether sectarian in her religious views, although she has been a life-long member of the Methodist Episcopal church, and her rectitude, beauty of character and warm impulses have won for her hundreds of sincere friends.
REV. MAURICE EMERY WILSON, D. D., [pages 233-234] pastor of the First Presbyterian church of Dayton Ohio, was born in Baltimore, Md., April 2, 1855, but was reared in Cannonsburg, Pa.
Rev. Thomas B. Wilson, father of Rev. Maurice Emery, was a native of Cannonsburg, Pa,, born November 17, 1822, and descended from good old ante-American Revolutionary families. The paternal grandfather of the Rev. Thomas B. Wilson was a native of Londonderry, Ireland, and the maternal grandmother, who bore the maiden name of Dill, descended from Col. Matthew Dill, of York county, Pa., a prominent hero of the war for American independence, and who traced his genealogy to Oliver Cromwell, Rev. Thomas B. Wilson was educated at Jefferson college and at the Western Theological seminary, and his first pastoral charge was that of the Sixth Presbyterian church of Pittsburg, Pa., his second, that of the Presbyterian church of Xenia, Ohio, and while' here engaged in work of the ministry, he was taken sick, which caused his return to Cannonsburg, Pa., where he died in September, 1858. His widow, who prior to marriage was Miss Margaret B. Sanders, survived him until August 31, 1895. She was a native of Gettysburg, Pa., and was a daughter of Maj. Jacob Sanders, a gallant officer of the war of 1812, a hero of Lundy's Lane, and an ardent friend of Gen. Winfield Scott. The children born to Rev. Thomas B. Wilson and wife. were two in number, Rev. Maurice E. and Rev. Calvin Dill Wilson—the latter being the present pastor of the Franklin, Ohio, Presbyterian church. These brothers were educated in the same schools, and were classmates from the time of their entrance upon collegiate work until their graduation, so that a brief record of the educational course of one is equivalent to that of the other.
Maurice Emery Wilson received his elementary instructions in the public schools of Cannonsburg, Pa., and prepared for college in the Cannonsburg academy.' He entered the sophomore class of Washington and Jefferson college at the age of eighteen years, graduated when twenty-one years old, and immediately entered the Western Theological seminary at Pittsburg, Pa., where he completed his three-years' course in April, 1879. In December of the latter year he was ordained to the ministry of the Presbyterian church, having accepted a call to the pastorate of the church at Gallipolis, Ohio, where he remained two and one-half years. His next charge was at Emsworth, one of the suburban Presbyterian churches of .Pittsburg, Pa., where he officiated very acceptably for the same period of time, and was then called to the pastorate of Westminster church, of his native city, Baltimore, Md., where he gained celebrity as a pulpit orator and a profound interpreter of the Scriptures and remained over five years. In March, 1890, Dr. Wilson was called to his present charge in Dayton, where he has established himself each year more firmly in the affection and esteem of his congregation and hate added, to his character for piety and devotion to the cause of religion, a high repute for that good citizenship which concerns itself in the every day affairs and interests of the community.
In June, 1879, Dr. Wilson was united in, matrimony with Miss Fanny McCombs, who comes from two of the oldest and most prominent families of Washington, Pa., but now of Pittsburg. Miss McCombs was highly educated in her girlhood and a graduate of Washington seminary. The union of Rev. M. E. Wilson and wife has been blessed with one child only—Anna Quail, a young lady now under the instruction of private tutors. In his politics Mr. Wilson is independent of party control, but is a warm and earnest advocate of temperance; fraternally, he is a member of the Sons of the Revolution and also of the Royal Arcanum. The Wilson family have ever been eminent in literary pursuits and belles lettres generally as well as in the ministry and other spheres of usefulness. One, Rev. Dr. John R. Paxton, is now in Europe, seeking the restoration of his health which has been lost through over-exertion in the performance of his arduous professional duties, he having for many years eminent as pastor of the West. Presbyterian church of New York city; another member of the family. Prof. Samuel J. Wilson, D. D., LL. D., was for twenty-five years professor of church history in the Western Theological seminary of Pittsburg, Pa,, while the Dr. M. E. Wilson and his brother have edited and published a volume, entitled "Occasional Addresses and Sermons," delivered by this able and eloquent scholar.
EDMOND STAFFORD YOUNG, [pages 234-238] deceased, one of the ablest members of the Dayton bar, and one of the most prominent citizens of that city, was born at Lyme, N. H., on February 28, 1827, and was the son of George Murray Young and Sibel (Green) Young.
He was of Scottish-Irish descent, his grandfather, Dr. Hugh Murray Young, having been an early Irish emigrant to Connecticut.
His father, George Murray Young, was born in Litchfield county, Conn., on April 1, 1802. He was educated at Exeter and Poughkeepsie academies, and then, learning the trade of a printer, carried on business for a time as a printer and publisher. In 1836 he married Sibel Green, daughter of Benjamin Green, of Lyme, N. H., and granddaughter of Col. Ebenezer Green, a Revolutionary soldier.
In 1835 he moved with his family to Ohio, and located at Newark, where for ten years he was extensively engaged in mercantile pursuits. In 1845 he went to Cincinnati, where for six years he carried on the produce and commission business. He came to Dayton in 1851. He was elected mayor of this city in 1854, and re-elected in 1855, and was subsequently appointed United States commissioner, an office which he held until his death. His wife died in Dayton in 1865.
He was grand worthy patriarch of the Sons of Temperance, when that order numbered 30,000 in Ohio. In politics he was a whig, and subsequently a republican. During the war he was a stanch Union man. He was a prominent member of the Presbyterian church, and was at all time's, and in whatever community he resided, honored and respected for his integrity and strength of character. He died at Dayton on August 30, 1878.
Edmond Stafford Young attended college at Granville, Ohio, and afterward at Cincinnati, graduating from Farmers (afterwards Belmont) college near that city in 1845.
At the latter institution he had among his school-mates ex-President Benjamin Harrison, Murat Halstead, and Hon. L. B. Gunckel, and the late Judge Henderson Elliott, of Dayton. He read law in the office of W. J. McKinney, of Dayton, and after a turn of service in the office of the clerk of the court of Montgomery county, Ohio, graduated from the Cincinnati Law school, and was admitted to the bar in the year 1853.
Mr. Young's professional partners were, successively, George W. Brown, Hon. D. A. Houk and Oscar M. Gottschall, with the latter of whom his partnership continued from 1866 until 1879. In 1878 his eldest son, George R. Young, was admitted to the firm, which, under the name of Young, Gottschall & Young, continued until the year 1879, when Mr. Gottschall retired. Mr. Young and his son remained together in the practice under the firm name of Young & Young until his death in 1888,
In September, 1856, at Philadelphia, Pa., Mr. Young married Sarah B. Dechert, daughter of Elijah Dechert, a prominent lawyer of Reading, Pa, and granddaughter of Judge Robert Porter of that city.
Her mother, Mary Porter, was descended from Robert Porter, a native of Ireland, who landed at Londonderry, N. H., and afterwards purchased a farm in Montgomery county, Pa., 'where he took up his permanent residence. His most successful and prominent son (Mrs. Dechert's grandfather) was Gen. Andrew Porter, who was born September 24, 1743, and served with distinction as an officer during the Revolutionary war. After its close he was commissioned major-general of militia in Pennsylvania, and was tendered the position of secretary of war by President Madison, but declined. His son, Judge Robert Porter, of Reading, Pa., was born January 10, 1768, and served during the latter part of the war of the Revolution as a lieutenant of artillery. Having entered the army with his father when but. eleven years of age, he was perhaps the youngest soldier, and officer of the war.
In 1789 he was admitted to the bar at Philadelphia, and was afterwards appointed president judge of the Third judicial district of Pennsylvania, a position which he filled for over twenty-five years, when he resigned and retired to private life. Edmond S. Young was a strong Union man and an earnest supporter of President Lincoln's administration. He was appointed by Gov. Brough commissioner of the draft for Montgomery county, and made the largest draft of any in the state. He also served as a member of the military committee, and was identified with the organization of all the local companies raised in Dayton and its vicinity. He devoted much time and labor to the cause, and through his out-spoken and uncompromising efforts, was often exposed to much personal danger.
Mr. Young was a member of the first non-partisan police board of Dayton, appointed in 1873, by which the present metropolitan police system of that city was inaugurated. He was also one of the founders of the Dayton Bar association, now known as the Dayton Law Library association.
During the course of his practice he was frequently urged to accept a judicial position, but declined. Upon the death of Judge W. W, Johnson in 1886 he was asked to become a candidate for his unexpired term upon the supreme bench; and without his knowledge a petition for his appointment, signed by the entire Dayton bar, was presented to Gov. Foraker. Learning of the movement, however, Mr. Young, for personal reasons, declined to permit the use of his name.
He was a member of the Ohio State Bar association, and also of the American Bar association, and from a biographical sketch of him, which appears in the published proceedings of the latter organization, for the year 1888, we select the following extract, which is truthfully descriptive of him, both as a lawyer and as a citizen:
Mr. Young was a man of striking physical appearance, and of marked mental characteristics. He was born to be a lawyer. His breadth of intellect, his strong, determined will, his sound, impartial judgment, his remarkable reasoning powers, his gift of nice and correct discrimination, made up a mental organization distinctively legal, while, at the same time, his large and well proportioned head, with its high, expansive forehead, set firmly on his broad, square shoulders, gave him a personal appearance in keeping with his mental characteristics.
He was a strong and pure type of that class of American lawyers, who, eschewing outside schemes for the promotion of wealth or personal aggrandizement, devote to their profession the full measure of their powers, and seek happiness in the conscientious discharge of their professional, domestic and civic duties.
He died suddenly on the evening of February 14, 1888, while still in the active practice of his profession, leaving his widow, two sons, and one daughter, Mary (since deceased), surviving.
ROBERT I. CUMMIN, [pages 238-239] one of the solid and successful business men of Dayton, was born in Liverpool, Perry county, Pa., July 7, 1845, and seventeen years later came to this state, locating at Marion, where he spent three years in the dry-goods store of Johnson, Uhler & Company. After leaving that establishment, he secured a clerkship in the old store of Pragh & Rike, who were extensively engaged in the dry-goods business in Dayton. Two years were passed in this way, when his connection with the firm terminated by the formation of the house of D. L. Rike & Company, of which Mr. Cummin and S. E. Kumler were members. This firm carried on a most successful business for nearly thirty years, when the death of D. L. Rike caused a vacancy, which was soon afterward filled by his son, Frederick H. Rike. The firm of D. L. Rike & Company inaugurated a business career that has had a wonderful growth. At first they required the assistance of but two clerks; but their patronage has continually urged every advance that they have made, and has poured into their new and extensive establishment in so marvelous a way that they are now giving employment to one hundred and forty clerks. During all these years Mr. Cummin has been an indefatigable worker, alert to grasp every new and practical idea, and quick to utilize every scheme that promised to promote his business or the public interests. He was the originator of the design on which the Rike Dry Goods company's new store building was erected, it being 150 x 80 feet in dimensions, and arranged with every convenience for the expeditious transaction of business, and being a model in its attractiveness and comfort to patrons.
Mr. Cummin, while thus attending to the promotion of the business interests of his firm, has not been' unmindful of his duty to the public as a citizen; He was a member of the company which Constructed the Fifth street railroad in Dayton, and was for many years one of its' directors and a factor in bringing about its success; he was also largely instrumental in effecting the legislation which has made all the pikes of the county free to the use of the public without the imposition of tolls, and still finds time and energy to devote to the duties of chairman of the good roads committee.
Dr. William Cummin, father of Robert I. Cummin, was a native of Ireland, and his mother, Mary (Hart) Cummin, a native of Tuscarora valley, Pa., was also of Irish descent. The father was a physician of considerable ability and reputation. He acquired his medical learning in the schools of Edinburg, Scotland ; Belfast institute, Ireland, and in Philadelphia, Pa. He practiced his profession in Pennsylvania, and died in 1846, at the early age of forty-two. His widow long survived him, dying in Williamsport, Pa., at the advanced age of eighty-six.
Robert I. Cummin had the benefit of a common-school education that terminated when only sixteen years of age. But he made the most of it, and has achieved a signal success in life. He is a member of the Protestant Episcopal church, and affiliates with the republican party in his political activities. He was married June 15, 1881, to Miss Ellen P. Church, daughter of Judge Gaylord Church, of Meadville, Pa. Four children, three sons and one daughter, have been born to them, of whom all are now living: Gaylord, Edith, Hart and Pearson.
CHARLES WESLEY DUSTIN, [pages 239-240] judge of the common pleas court of the second judicial district of Ohio, and a prominent member of the Dayton bar, was born in Zanesville, Ohio, and is the son of the late Rev. M. and Mary B. (Danna) Dustin. Rev. Dustin was a native of Oneida county, N. Y., and was a lineal descendant of Hannah Dustin, who during the Indian war killed ten Indians with a tomahawk in order to preserve the lives of herself and child, after two children had already been killed by the savages. A monument has been erected to her memory on an island in the Merrimac river, the scene of the incident. The parents of Rev. Dustin came to Ohio during his youth and settled in Washington county, and it was there he was reared. He attended Marietta college, entered the ministry of the M. E. church, and for fifty years was in active work, first in the Ohio and then in the Cincinnati conference. He was especially prominent during the anti-slavery movement. In 1890 he retired from the ministry, and in 1893 removed to Dayton, and died in this city during the winter of 1896. His wife was born in Washington county, Ohio (a full account of her family appearing in Munsey's Magazine for November, 1896). Her father was William Danna, a son of Capt. William Danna, who was a pioneer of Ohio and an intimate friend of the Blennerhassetts, of Blennerhassett island fame, Capt. Danna having lived opposite that island. Five children were born to Rev. Dustin and wife, three of whom lived to reach maturity, all now being' dead except the judge, and the mother having died during his youth.
The early education of Judge Dustin was secured in the public schools. He attended Wesleyan university at Delaware and was graduated there at an early age. Following this he went west and taught in the Quincy, Ill., and Brookville, Ind., colleges. He read law with the firm of Boltin & Shauck, of Dayton, the junior member of which firm is now on the supreme bench of Ohio. He was admitted to the bar and engaged in practice in Dayton and continued until he was elected to the bench in November, 1895. During his early years Judge Dustin did considerable writing for the press. He was for some time an editorial writer for the Daily Journal of Dayton. He also contributed to the Cincinnati Commercial Gazette, and during the existence of the Cincinnati Graphic, he was on that paper's editorial staff. He has traveled extensively, having been to Europe on two different occasions and visiting all the countries reached by the great body of tourists. He has also visited Russia and Finland in Europe, old Mexico and Canada, and nearly every section of the United States.
Judge Dustin served six or seven years as a member of the Dayton board of education, in whose work he took a deep interest. He was one of the founders of the Garfield republican club of Dayton, and was the first to sign the constitution of that organization. He took an active interest in the formation of the Ohio republican league, serving on the committee to draft a constitution for the same, and was a delegate to the convention held in New York city, which organized the national republican league. He is also a member of the different Masonic bodies and of the Dayton club. Early in his career Judge Dustin was married to Miss Alpha Hull Newkirk, of Connersville, Ind., who lived only a few years, dying without issue.
EUGENE J. BARNEY, [page 240] president of the Barney & Smith Manufacturing company of Dayton, was born in that city on February 12, 1839. His education was secured in the public schools and at Rochester university. In 1866 Mr. Barney purchased the interest of S. F. Woodsum in the Barney & Smith Car works. In a few years he became superintendent of the works, and upon the retirement of Mr. Smith was made vice-president and superintendent, and in 1880, upon the death of his father, was made president of the company. Mr. Barney is also president of the Dayton Manufacturing company, and president of the Cooper Hydraulic company; and is also a director in the following: The Fourth National bank, the Union Safe Deposit and Trust company, the National Improvement company, Dayton Street Railway company, Wisconsin Central Railroad company, New York, Lake Erie & Western Railroad company, Davis Sewing Machine company, and other minor local institutions.
Mr. Barney was married on February 12, 1862, to Miss M. Belle Huffman, eldest daughter of the late W. P. Huffman, of Dayton, and they are the parents of the following children: Mrs. Anna B. German, Julia Barney (deceased), Mrs. Mary Elizabeth Reynolds, and Eugene E. Barney (deceased).
Mr. Barney is essentially a man of business affairs, and chiefly absorbed in the direction of the great manufacturing enterprise of which he is the head.. His exceptional business qualifications, largely inherited from his father, the late Eliam E. Barney, place him among the leaders in the financial and industrial life of the city of Dayton.
GEORGE W. HEATHMAN, [page 240-241] one of the prominent business men of Dayton, was born in Dayton January 13, 1850.
He is a son of Elias Heathman, who was a native of Findlay, Ohio, and removed to Dayton in 1844. Elias Heathman was a cabinetmaker by trade and followed that trade for many years. For some time he was engaged in the carriage business in Dayton, and from about 1851 to 1885 he was engaged in the livery business. Mr. Heathman was a man of integrity and highly respected. His death occurred in 1885.
George W. Heathman was reared in Dayton and was educated in the public schools. At the age of sixteen he entered the store of Van Ausdal, Harman & Co., where he remained from 1866 to November, 1869. In that year Charles W. Nickum, George W. and Elias Heathman formed a firm then known as Nickum, Heathman &Co., with its location on Main street, for the purpose of manufacturing crackers, biscuits, etc. In the spring of 1870 this firm removed to Second street, where they remained until 1872, when the style was changed to G. W. Heathman & Co., Mr. Nickum retiring. In 1875 the firm purchased a lot on the corner of Second and St. Clair streets, upon which they erected a three-story and basement brick building, 68 x 100 feet in size, which is equipped with a fifty-horse power engine and all machinery necessary to the carrying on of a first-class business. The firm name of G. W. Heathman & Co. was used until the spring of 1890, when the business passed into the hands of the United States Baking company, of which Mr. Heathman was one of the organizers. He is also manager of the Dayton business.
Mr. Heathman was married in 1872 to Ida M. Anderson, daughter of Benjamin F., of Dayton. Four children have been born to this union, as follows: Edward M., Frank B., Effie S. and Luella.
MORRIS WOODHULL, [page 241-242] proprietor of the Dayton Buggy and Carriage-works, and one of the representative men of Dayton, Ohio, was born in New York city on December 1, 1842, and is a son of James and Hannah (Longstreth) Woodhull, the former a native of Long Island, N. Y., and the latter of New Jersey. The Woodhulls originally came from England, the first family of the name landing on Long Island in 1648, where they laid out the town of Setauket, purchasing the land from the Indians, and for three generations a Woodhull was the king's magistrate on that island. One of the family, a cousin to James Woodhull, was mayor of New York city, and William Woodhull, grandfather of Morris, was a leading merchant of that city in 1800. The grandfather of Mrs. James Woodhull was Gov. Lambert, of New Jersey.
Morris Woodhull was reared and educated in New York city, and after graduating from the city schools entered the university of the City of New York. He came to Dayton in 1858 and took a position in his elder brother's seed and implement store, where he remained as clerk until 1869, when he became a member of the firm of L. & M. Woodhull. This firm conducted the seed and implement business until 1878, when they engaged in the manufacture of carriages, the partnership lasting continuously for twenty-one years. In 1890 Morris Woodhull purchased the entire interest of his brother Lambert, the firm was dissolved, and he became sole proprietor of the business. In 1878 Mr. Woodhull was one of the first to introduce into Ohio the manufacture of carriages in a wholesale way, outside of Columbus and Cincinnati, and the first to start in that line in Dayton and vicinity. The original shops were located on Kenton street, and were a part of the old Beaver & Butt buildings. The business was begun in a small way, the intention being to make a trial of 300 carriages for the first year.
The demand for the firm's work was, however, so great during the first year that 700 instead of 300 vehicles were completed, to meet the orders. The shops remained on Kenton street for two years, and were then removed to the Dayton & Western shops, on West Fifth street, where they were continued until 1888, when the present large shops were completed at the junction of Fifth street and Home avenue. Here the class of work turned out is strictly high grade; but Mr. Woodhull, early recognizing, that grade alone was insufficient to insure large success, has, since the beginning, made a specialty of attractive and meritorious novelties. He successfully marketed the Woodhull side bar spring, which had a ready sale all over the United States, not only in the finished vehicle but in parts. Mr. Woodhull also invented, in 1896, the Perfection jump seat surry, which was very successful and so popular that in the same year the sale amounted to 1,030, Each year he adds something new to his line. The year 1895 was noteworthy in the Woodhull establishment, from the fact that he then introduced .and marketed a new style of pleasure vehicle known as the trap. Mr. Woodhull's plant is one of the finest and most complete for manufacturing buggies and carriages in the state of Ohio, and is by far the largest in the city of Dayton. A bit of interesting history is attached to the ground upon which the plant is situated. The grandfather of Mr. Woodhull's wife, David Stout, an old Dayton merchant, owned 160 acres of land, some fifty years ago, a part of which was the ground above mentioned. Desiring to sell the farm, Mr. Stout was compelled to cut it up into ten-acre tracts in order to realize the value of $19 per acre. In March, 1894, Mr. Woodhull sold to the City Railway company a piece of ground upon which the company's power plant now stands, containing less than one-third of an acre, which was a part of the original 160 acres, for $15,000 cash—quite an increase in valuation in fifty years.
Mr. Woodhull is vice-president for Ohio of the National Carriage Builders' association, chairman of the electric light committee of the board of trade, is a member of the Dayton club and of the Present Day club. He is a ready writer and has contributed many interesting articles to the papers and. delivered numerous addresses and short talks before various conventions and bodies, Mr. Woodhull was married, May 23, 1872, to Mary Stout, daughter of Elias Stout, of Dayton, and to their marriage three sons have been born, as follows: Morris G., manager for his father of the New York repository of the Dayton Buggy works, at No. 366 Canal street. New York city; Roger S., a graduate of Yale college, and James R., a student at the Dayton high school.
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