Centennial Portrait and Biographical Record of the City of Dayton and of Montgomery County, Ohio
Pages 892-902 William L. Bates to Darius Wetzel

WILLIAM L. BATES, [page 892] one of the well-known citizens of Dayton, Ohio, was born in Cincinnati, Ohio, in 1844, and is a son of Richard and Nancy (Trotter) Bates.   Richard Bates was a native of Lincolnshire, England. He was one of the old time merchants of Cincinnati, having been the proprietor of the first wholesale grocery house on Walnut street, in that city.  His death occurred in Clifton, a suburb of Cincinnati, in 1855. Nancy Trotter was a native of Steubenville, Ohio. In 1858 she, with her family, removed to Dayton, her eldest daughter having previously married John H. Winters, the prominent citizen and banker of this city. Mrs. Bates's death occurred in Dayton in 1870. She was a woman of unusual attainments, and charity and benevolence were among her strong characteristics. She was the founder of the first orphans' asylum in Dayton, and she and Mrs. Parrott, mother of Col. E. A. Parrott, raised the money by subscription to purchase the land (the present site of the Deaconess hospital) upon which the .orphans' asylum was situated. The number of inmates became so large that Mrs. Bates was instrumental in having a bill passed by the Ohio legislature establishing a county orphan asylum, and the original asylum was removed to the West Side and made a county institution. The widows' home was subsequently established upon the site of the orphans' asylum, and of that institution Mrs. Bates became first president, and so continued until her death, being succeeded in the presidency by her daughter, Mrs. Winters. In 1868 the increasing number of inmates of the widows' home necessitated the establishment of a new and more commodious home, and following its removal to another location the present Deaconess hospital was erected on the site of the first orphans' asylum.

Three sons and two daughters were born to Richard Bates and wife, as follows: Richard J., Adolphus S., William L., Susan and Ella. The eldest daughter married John H. Winters, and the youngest married Charles T. Huffman.  All of the children reside in Dayton except Adolphus, who is a resident of Saint Paul, Minn.

W. L. Bates was educated in the public schools of Cincinnati and Dayton. At the end of his third year in the high school, in 1862, he entered the army. After the war he returned to Dayton and became interested in the grocery business, and has ever since been associated with that industry. He engaged in the brokerage business in 1877.  Mr. Bates was made a master Mason in Mystic lodge, in 1871.  He was made a Knight Templar of Reed cornmandery in 1874, and received the Scottish-rite thirty-second degree in 1881. He served as commander of Reed commandery in 1885, and as captain-general of Reed commandery for eleven years. He was elected presiding officer of Dayton chapter of Rose Croix, Scottish rite, in 1891, and served as such until 1894. He was elected grand warden of the grand commandery of Ohio in 1893, and has been promoted each year since and is now grand junior warden. He is a member of Old Guard post, G. A. R. Mr. Bates was married in October, 1868, to Belle, daughter of the Hon. Warren P. Noble, of Tiffin, Ohio.

 

JESSE BOOHER. [pages 892-894] This venerable native-born citizen of Dayton first saw the light in the embryo days of what is now a great center of trade and population. His father, Samuel Booher, settled in Dayton in 1806, was a wagonmaker by trade, and died in 1857 at the age of seventy-five.  He married Miss Susan Lehman, who was the first person baptized into a church in this city, and was connected with the Christian church the remainder of her life.  She became the mother of thirteen children and died at the age of eighty-four years. Of her large family four are still living.  Gideon is a farmer in Kansas; Mrs. Catherine Ware, the widow of Thomas Ware, has her home in this city; Mrs. Susan Beachler has her residence in Salem, in this county; and the fourth is the subject of this biography. Jesse Booher's birth occurred February 15, 1821, in a frame structure which stood on East Second street, next east of the present Windsor hotel, and which was later known as the Schieble house.  Being only a quarter of a century behind the birth of the city, he has had the privilege of watching its growth from an insignificant village of less than a thousand people to its present proud place as the fifth city in the state of Ohio.

Mr. Booher is a man of clear mind and observing eye, and there is no one better informed upon Dayton affairs. He enjoys the distinction of being the oldest living male born within the boundaries of the city.  It is currently believed and reported by the younger residents of the city, those who get their information from tradition, that the old Newcom tavern was the first house erected upon the present site of Dayton. This, Mr. Booher says,  is not true.  He states from positive knowledge that the first house erected here was brought on a raft by a Marylander named Watson, and was located on the east part of the ground now occupied by the Steele high school.

Mr. Booher has been a carpenter and master mechanic all his days, occupying the same shop on Booher alley for half a century. For the centennial celebration of April, 1896, he constructed, out of timber taken from the huge logs of the Newcom tavern, a miniature cabin which remains an heirloom in the hands of John Cotterill, the owner of the old tavern at the time of its removal to Van Cleve park.

Mr. Booher, when a mere boy, had the opportunity of seeing a steamboat, then a new invention, and an object of curious interest to a person of his inventive genius.   He was given a lithograph of the boat; and from this, after a year's toil, he succeeded in producing a model. This he named Lucretia, No. 2, the original having been Lucretia, No. I. This model frequently changed hands, and is now preserved in the Dayton Library & Museum building in Cooper park.

The Booher family was a sturdy one, inured to toil, and generally of long life. The maternal grandmother of Jesse Booher attained the remarkable age of 100 years, lacking only two weeks. Our subject is a man of fine physique, though not above the medium height. He is the embodiment of bodily health and endurance.   Though past seventy-five years of age, he still takes delight in skating, in which art he has been the envy of the boys of three generations.

During the dark days of the Rebellion, he was among the first to enter the three months' service.  He enlisted under the president's first call for volunteers in company A, Eleventh Ohio volunteer infantry, serving four and a half months.  He offered himself for enrollment in the three years' service, but was rejected on account of a crippled hand. Mr. Booher was married in this city, April 26, 1841, to Miss Cynthia Ann Reynolds, a native of Philadelphia, born in 1822. To this union there have come seven children, four of whom are still living, viz: Lucretia Creamer, the wife of a conductor in Indiana; Belle, now Mrs. Gager of New York city; Emma Rule, living in Portland, Ore., and William Orvis, who is connected with a circus. Mrs. Booher, who is still living, is in feeble health, largely as the result of a fall.

Mr. Booher is a member of Old Guard post, G. A. R.  Politically he is a republican, served for twenty-eight years as city sealer of weights and measures, and has held other official positions.

In 1852 he made the journey to California via Cape Horn.  On the way out he visited the cities of Rio de Janeiro and Valparaiso. He returned to Dayton in 1854, and engaged in pine coopering, which he followed very extensively for several years, employing as many as forty men at times; but he could not make head against labor-saving machinery, and after a time retired from the business. He prepared a model for a steam fire engine as early as 1849, thus being among the first to discover a practical way of fighting fire. This model was destroyed in a fire in Cincinnati, and the idea was never patented by him.

 

GEORGE W. HOUK. [pages 894-895] The ancestors of George W. Houk came from Holland to Cumberland county, Pa., where his grandfather and father were born. The former was a man of large property for that day, owning five or six adjoining farms, skirting the Alleghany mountains upon the east, and also opened iron mines and built a forge at a cost of $60,000. His wife, Salome Line, was of French ancestry. They had a large family.  Adam, the third son, married Katherine Knisely, a beautiful girl, educated at York, the nearest city to the Cumberland county farms, affording the best educational advantages at that time.  They had four children, Mary, Adam, David and George. Dissatisfied with financial and educational prospects, and averse to rearing his children to horse and hound—the rude though manly sports of the mountains—deer hunting being the favorite past-time, Adam Houk and his wife started on horseback for the Ohio valley. Graceful and fearless in the saddle, the mother carried George before her. the other children, with the household wares, following in the wagon. After several weeks of varied experiences through fields and forests, over mountains and rivers, they crossed Mad river, near Dayton, upon George's second birthday, September 25, 1827, wintering at Knisely's Mills and coming into Dayton the following spring.

George began his studies in the public schools, but attributed his love for study and intellectual pursuits to the admirable training of E. E. Barney, who had the rare faculty of imparting an ardent desire for learning.  He inculcated the principle, that as the Creator and His creature are infinite, the text books of school days were but to initiate gleams of thought in each branch, which were to be followed up by life-long progress—to continue through the great forever—for only eternity could suffice to follow in this infinite pathway of Life, Truth and Love.

Thus equipped for a beginning, George became a teacher before he was eighteen years of age. In the summer he assisted his father in his work as superintendent of the construction of the Miami canal, through the Montgomery county division.

In early manhood he was distinguished for graceful, accomplished horsemanship, and for athletic feats and vigor of mind and body. Lithe, and tall and slender, he could bend backward and pick up a small coin from the floor with his mouth—a striking contrast to his form in later years. Mr. Houk studied law in the office of Peter P. Lowe, was admitted to the bar in 1847, and formed a partnership with his preceptor.  Later he was associated with the Hon. George B. Holt.  In 1860 he formed a partnership with the Hon. John A. McMahon, which lasted for twenty years, and from 1880 Mr. Houk practiced on his sole account.

In 1852, though but twenty-seven years of age, Mr. Houk was sent to the Ohio legislature, and was distinguished by being made chairman of the judiciary committee. In 1860 he was sent as a delegate to the national democratic convention at Charleston, S. C., at which Stephen A. Douglas was nominated for president.  In 1876 he was a delegate to the democratic, national convention at Saint Louis, when Samuel J. Tilden was nominated for the presidency.  In 1884 he was nominated a district elector.  In 1890 Mr. Houk was elected to congress from the Third Ohio district, and in 1892 was re-elected.  His death occurred suddenly in Washington, on February 9, 1894, during the period of his second congressional term.

December 25, 1856, Mr. Houk was married to Eliza Phillips Thruston, daughter of Robert A. Thruston, a granddaughter of Horatio G. Phillips, and a sister of Gen. Gates P. Thruston, of Nashville, Tenn.  Mr. Honk left this lady a widow with three children, viz: Mrs. Harry E. Mead, who resides at Runnymede, her father's residence for thirty-eight years, overlooking a wide, beautiful stretch of the Miami valley and the city of Dayton; Mrs. Harry E. Talbot, and Robert Thruston Houk, residing near the homestead, south of the city's limits.

Mr. Houk's brother, David, is still living. He has had repeated calls to positions of trust and honor, and is distinguished as a criminal lawyer, for true nobility of character and unimpeachable integrity.

His brother, Adam, died in his country's service in September, 1864.  He has one son— now living in South Dakota. His sister Mary, who married William Ramsey, has passed to her reward after a most exemplary and useful life, her warm-hearted benevolence, intelligence and practical interest in all good work endearing her to many friends.

George W. Houk was possessed of strong intellectual powers and of literary tastes and ability, which manifested themselves in the writing of essays, philosophical treatises and public addresses upon subjects covering a wide range. Much of his best work of this character was done solely for the love of writing and in order to fix in his mind the result of his extensive reading. While, therefore, some of his most valuable literary productions remained in manuscript and without publication, his fine gift of expression and wealth of knowledge were known, outside his library, chiefly through his addresses upon public occasions. In this direction, his dignity, his fine presence, his rich fund of information upon public questions, and his thorough command of the best graces of oratory, combined to make George W; Houk one of the most prominent figures in the past fifty years of Dayton's history. Added to his equipment as a scholar and thinker were most delightful social qualities, humor, urbanity, unfailing courtesy and genuine hospitality. In both private and public life Mr. Houk was a fine type of the high-minded, upright, useful citizen.  His sudden death came as a severe blow upon the community in. which he had so long been loved and honored, bringing the sense of personal loss to a great circle of friends and acquaintances whom for many years he had charmed with his personality and impressed with his strength of mind and high moral character.

 

OBED W. IRVIN, [pages 895-896] judge of the probate court of Montgomery county, and one of the most prominent of the younger citizens of Dayton, was born in this city January 12, 1866, and is the son of James B. and Ellen (Montfort) Irvin. Judge Irvin passed through the public schools of Dayton, and in 1883 entered Yale college, from which institution he was graduated in 1887. Following this he accepted a position as teacher in the Dayton high school, being thus engaged for four years, and having charge of classes in mathematics and Latin. In 1889 he entered the senior class of the Cincinnati Law School, where he was graduated in the spring of 1892.  He at once began the practice of law in Dayton, but in 1893 was nominated by the republican party for the office of probate judge, to which position he was elected in the following fall, overcoming at the time a large democratic majority. The administration of the office by Judge Irvin was endorsed in 1896 by a renomination and re-election by an increased majority, and he is now serving his second term.

 

REV. EDMUND SIMON LORENZ, A. M., D. D., [pages 896-897]  of Dayton, Ohio, is the eldest son of Rev. Edward and Barbara (Gueth) Lorenz, of whom a memoir is given on page 351, and was born in Stark county, Ohio, July 13, 1854. His elementary education was received in the public schools of his neighborhood and at the Toledo high school, from which latter he was graduated in 1870. He then engaged in teaching for some time; in 1880 he was graduated from Otterbein university with the degree of A. B., followed in 1883 with that of A. M.; from 1880 to 1881 he was a student in Union Biblical seminary of Dayton, and from 1881 to 1883 in Yale Theological seminary, receiving from the latter the degree of bachelor of divinity; from 1883 to 1884 he studied in the university at Leipzig, Germany, giving special attention to philosophy and church history.

Mr. Lorenz joined the United Brethren church in 1871; in 1877 he was licensed to preach by the Miami conference, and ordained in 1882.  After his return from Europe he filled the pastorate of the High street church of Dayton from 1884 to 1886, and during the following year served as German Protestant chaplain of the national military home near Dayton.  In 1887 he was chosen president of Lebanon Valley college at Annville, Penn. He entered upon this work with zeal and devotion, to which was due great progress in the development and usefulness of the institution. During his first year he secured an attendance of over fifty per cent. above that of any preceding year.   But his physical constitution, undermined by his double work during his collegiate and theological training and the severity of his pastoral duties, suddenly gave way in 1888,'and he was completely prostrated. The next three years were passed in weary invalidism, and he is still a sufferer, being compelled to relinquish all public ministerial labor and to avoid general society.  He turned his attention to music, which had been his diversion previously, and in the theory of which art he had been thoroughly grounded.

Issuing his first book in 1875, Mr. Lorenz has published many musical compositions, which have been hailed with gladness in hundreds of thousands of homes, not only in America, but in England and Germany. His books are wholly of a religious character. Some of them were prepared in conjunction with other gentlemen of acknowledged talent; as, for instance, in conjunction with Rev. W. H. Lanthurn, Praise Offering; conjointly with Rev. I. Baltzell, Heavenly Carols, Songs of Grace, Gates of Praise, Holy Voices, Songs of the Kingdom, Notes of Triumph, Songs of Refreshing, Garnered Sheaves, Songs of the Morning, and The Master's Praise; with W. A. Ogden he was joint editor of Notes of Victory; was associated with President J. E. Rankin, of Howard university, in the publication of Murphy’s Temperance Hymnal; with Rev. W. F. McCauley, in the Christian Endeavor Hymnal, Songs for Christ and the Church.   Beside these, Mr. Lorenz has issued alone, Songs of the Cross, Missionary Songs, Otterbein Hymnal (the authorized United Brethren Hymnal), The People's Hymnal, Tried and True, Spirit and Life (Nos. I and 2), the anthem books Gloria, Festal Anthems, and the Anthem Prize, an infant class song book in English and one in German and two books for male voices. He has also issued scores of exercises for Christmas, Easter and other special occasions, of which millions of copies have been sold, and publishes two periodicals in this interest, one entitled Festal Days in English, and a German one, Fest-Tage.

In 1886 Mr. Lorenz projected a series of books on revival work, and in 1887 issued the Coming Revival, a handbook for laymen, and also the Gospel Worker's Treasury of Hymns and Revival Anecdotes, which also contains suggestive revival texts, sermon outlines and Scripture readings, and this work is now a standard with preachers of all denominations. In 1888 appeared his Getting Ready for a Revival, which also occupies a high place in revival literature. After somewhat recovering from his nervous collapse he began the publication of sacred music in a small way under the firm name of Lorenz & Co., and this firm is now one of the leading houses in its line in the country, its trade extending from ocean to ocean and into foreign .lands. In 1894 he founded the Choir Leader, a monthly periodical, devoted, of course, to choral music, and this is now recognized as being the leading publication of its class in the world, and has at this time over 10,000 subscribers.

Rev. E. S. Lorenz was united in marriage, October 1, 1877, with Miss Florence L, Kumler, daughter of Henry F. and Catherine E, (Zehring) Kumler and granddaughter of Bishop Henry Kumler, of the United Brethren church. She is a native of Lewisburg, Ohio, was for some years a student in Otterbein university, is a lady of fine social spirit, and a companion meet for her husband. Of the six children born to this happy union four are still living— Karl Kumler, Justina, Mary and Edward Henry; Paul Shuey and Catherine E. died in early childhood.  Politically, Mr. Lorenz designates himself as an independent republican.

Personally, Mr. Lorenz is extremely genial and companionable. Intelligent, earnest and discriminating, an hour spent in his company is both enjoyable and profitable. Of many of his best songs he is author of both words and music. His hymns, which always appear under a nom de plume, are free from the commonplace jingle that has been too common in recent years, showing thought and a cultivated mind, and breathing a spirit of worshipful devotion that naturally commends them to those who desire to use music which can be sung "with the spirit and with the understanding also," and thus are very popular.

 

REV. EDWARD HERBRUCK, DD., Ph. D., [pages 897-899] is a son of Rev. Peter Herbruck, DD., late of Canton, Ohio. His father's life was one of constant activity in the ministry, retiring at an advanced age only when. compelled to do so by the infirmities of his years.  Rev. P. Herbruck was probably one of the most widely known ministers in Ohio, and his labors in the Reformed church were most flatteringly successful.  He was born in Hengsberg, Germany, February 8, 1813. From early youth he had decided upon the ministry as his life work. At the age of eighteen years he came to America, and, after many hardships, finally reached Canton, Ohio.  He lived with a family named Wirt, a short distance west of the then hamlet of Canton, and taught school during 1831.   His pastor, Rev. Faust, saw the possibilities of a preacher in the young man, and aided him in his education, giving him private instruction in theology.  Rev. Faust died in the latter part of 1832, and young Herbruck was elected his successor, and, at the age of nineteen years, became the pastor of a church, and from 1833 until 1883 he was pastor of the same church by regular appointment—a period of fifty years —and served the same, periodically, for several years later.   During that time he performed 2,611 marriages, attended 2,560 funerals, baptized 5,938 people, and confirmed 2,917 novitiates.

He was married, in 1832, to Miss Sarah Holwick, and of the thirteen children born to them, ten are living, several of them being ministers of the gospel; others are business men and all honored and respected citizens. The death of Rev. Herbruck occurred at Canton, September 22, 1895; his widow still resides in Canton, she being a native of Stark county, Ohio.

Rev. Edward Herbruck was born in Canton, Ohio, May n, 1849.  His elementary education was acquired in the public schools of Canton and his collegiate education in Heidelberg university, Tiffin, Ohio, from which he was graduated in 1868, as valedictorian of his class. As a minister, he was stationed four years at Akron, and eight years at Canton.  In 1881, he was elected by the synod of the Reformed church as associate editor of the Christian World, continuing thirteen years in this work. Since 1884 he has devoted his time and attention to researches into the history of Egypt, and lecturing upon the land of the Pharaohs, or the story of a Long Lost Nation.   He has not only visited Egypt. personally, but has given many years of study to the subject. Being one of the honorary local secretaries of the Egypt Exploration society, he is in position to obtain all the latest facts regarding the discoveries made by that society. The lecture abounds in graphic descriptions of the land of the Nile, and its buried cities, as it was four thousand years ago. The life and literature of that ancient people, and the wonders which have been turned up by the spade of the excavator, bear witness to the fact that Egyptian civilization was not surpassed by that of any other ancient people.

Dr. Herbruck was united in marriage, November 21, 1872, with Miss Clara A. Burrowes, daughter of J. A. Burrowes and granddaughter of the reverend pastor, D. Winters. She is a native of Fairfield, Ohio, and was educated at Springfield Female seminary.  Dr. and Mrs. Herbruck have three children: Nellie B., Ralph and Hilda; the former, a graduate of Dayton high school, attended Wilson college one year; Ralph is a commercial student, and Hilda is a student in the city schools. Dr. Herbruck is devoted wholly to literary pursuits, and from the many press and individual criticisms and notices of his scholarship and lectures, the following clipping is made:

The Rev. Dr. E. Herbruck enjoys the very high esteem of the clergy of Dayton, Ohio. His ripe scholarship, his finished oratory, his wide travel, with the most decided success of his lectures on ancient Egypt, have confirmed his position in the very front rank of platform speakers. It is with much pleasure that we have witnessed Dr. Herbruck's growth, both as a close student and in increasing favor with the public.  It is the reward of honest toil, and our good opinion, formed of our friend and brother twenty-five years ago, has only intensified as the years have passed. We confidently predict that he will always please and instruct, and the preacher who has always met the demands of the occasion will more than please the scholarly and cultured audience.

WM. A. HALE,

Pastor First Reformed Church. Dayton, Ohio, May 32, 1895.

At the meeting of the synod of Ohio of the Reformed church in October, 1896, Dr. Herbruck was elected professor of historical theology for Heidelberg theological seminary.

 

FREDERICK BRENNER, [page 899] senior member of the firm of Fred Brenner & Son, proprietors of cooperage works, Dayton, Ohio, was born in Wurtemberg, Germany, December 31, 1842. He is a son of Michael and Christina ( Rau ) Brenner, both natives of Germany, and who were the parents of seven children, three of whom are still living, as follows: Jacob, Rosanna and Frederick. Michael Brenner was a cooper by trade, as was his father before him.  He died in Germany at the age of sixty-eight, his wife dying in 1861 at the age of sixty-three. Both were consistent members of the Lutheran church. The paternal grandfather of Frederick was John Brenner. He and his wife were the parents of six children, and he died when well advanced in years. The maternal grandfather of Frederick Brenner was named Michael Rau, and he also lived to an advanced age.

Frederick Brenner was reared in Germany, receiving there the education commonly given the youth of that country, and also learning the cooper's trade. In 1860 he came to the United States, settling in Cincinnati, and carrying on the cooper's trade until 1892, with the exception of the time he spent in the army of the Union in the late Civil war. He enlisted in 1861 in company C, Twenty-eighth Ohio volunteer infantry, serving three years and two months. He was in some of the most important battles of the war, among them those of Carnifax Ferry, Lookout Mountain, Troop Mountain, Frederick, Md., South Mountain, Antietam, and Piedmont, W. Va., beside many others of minor importance.

When the war was over Mr. Brenner returned to Cincinnati, and there for a time worked in a brewery cooperage shop, at length, however, starting a shop of his own.  In 1892 he removed to Dayton, Ohio, where he has since resided and carried on a successful business.

On July 15, 1865, he was married to Miss Margaret Kimmerlin, daughter of Mathias and Dora (Schenck) Kimmerlin. To this marriage there have been born eleven children, five of whom are still living, as follows: Johanna, John, Caroline, Dora and Michael. Mr. and Mrs. Brenner are members of the Lutheran church, and active workers in aid of the church organization.   Fraternally, Mr. Brenner is a member of the order of Odd Fellows and of the Knights of Honor. Politically, he is independent, taking greater interest in the success of proper principles than in the success of either party at the polls.   Mr. Brenner employs from sixteen to twenty men and makes a specialty of the manufacture of large casks, storage vats, tubs, tanks, etc., his work in this line being noted throughout the country for its excellent construction and workmanship. He has also recently furnished large casks and storage vats for Mexican and South American breweries and wine cellars.

 

DR. LEE CORBIN [pages 899-900] was born April 18, 1845, on a farm near Point Pleasant, Clermont county, Ohio. He, like other country boys, went to school in winter and helped on the farm in the summer. He trudged along to school with his elder brother (now Col. H. C. Corbin, U. S. A.) over a road three miles long, and as bad as could be found among the Ohio river hills. The winter school days and summers on the farm came and went until the war times of the '6os.  By this time young Corbin was in his "'teens," and having passed through the course of the district schools, was now at Clermont academy, Prof. James K. Parker, proprietor and principal.   As the war progressed the big boys enlisted in twos, threes and squads, until the school might very properly have been termed a girl's academy.  Lee Corbin, though somewhat tardy in enlisting (on account of age), did don the blue and was off for the war, where he remained until he was mustered out by reason of the close of the war.  He came home with the rest of the boys and again took up his books, teaching and going to school for about ten years.  During the last three years of his pedagogic experience, which was at Osborn, the thriving village to the north of Dayton, he read medicine, his chosen profession.

On the 2nd day of March, 1876, he gradated as one of the prize winners of a class of 102, at the Medical college of Ohio, at Cincinnati. Soon after completing his medical course Dr. Corbin was married to Annie A. Martin of Osborn, Ohio, and commenced housekeeping as well as the practice of medicine at Hamilton, Ohio. His wife died one year afterward and he continued practice in Hamilton for two years longer. He then married Bell Robison, of Warren county, Ohio, and located anew at the village of Vandalia, in the northern part of Montgomery county, nine miles from Dayton.  Here he played the part of "village doctor" for ten years, varying the monotony of practice by mixing in local politics, being an active republican.  Under the Harrison administration Dr. Corbin received the appointment of pension examiner, his being one of the appointments made by ex-Commissioner Tanner during his brief period of office. This appointment necessitated the removal of the doctor to Dayton, which took place in the late autumn of 1889. The pension board of which Dr. Corbin was a member probably examined more applicants for pensions than any other board in the United States. It was known as the soldiers' home board.  In the fall of 1894 Dr. Corbin was nominated and elected coroner of Montgomery county, for two years.  He was renominated and re-elected in the fall campaign of 1896, and is now serving his second term. When the doctor came to Dayton he located in the thrifty suburb of Riverdale and built a comfortable home, No. 625 North Main street, where he now resides, enjoying an extensive practice, and surrounded by a happy family.

Dr. Corbin has, since the close of the war, taken an active part in G. A. R. matters. He is an ex-post commander and has for several years filled the chair of surgeon in Old Guard, one of the largest posts in the state.

 

GUSTAVE A. HOCHWALT, M. D., [pages 900-901] a rising young, physician of Dayton, Ohio, was born in this city May 13, 1872, and is a son of George and Theressa (Lothammer) Hochwalt, the former of whom was a native of Germany and the latter of Canton, Ohio. They were married in Dayton, and here George Hochwalt was for many years one of the most successful shoe merchants of the city, as well as one of the earliest established in that industry. He was attentive to his business, realized a competence, and retired from the cares of active life in 1890. His death occurred April 25, 1894, and his widow still has her residence in Dayton. Of the six children born to George and Theressa Hochwalt, the doctor is the youngest. In order of birth they were as follows: Edward A., who resides in Dayton; Charles C., of Cleveland; Emma, wife of Frank Burkhardt; Anna, deceased; Albert, of the Grim Furniture company, Dayton; and Dr. Gustave A.

Dr. Hochwalt received his elementary education in the Brothers' school of Saint Mary's, in Dayton, from which he graduated in his eighteenth year.  He then entered the office of Dr. George Goodhue, an experienced physician of Dayton, under whom he read assiduously for two years, qualifying himself to enter Starling Medical institute, of Columbus, in 1892, and from this institution he graduated after three years of faithful study, receiving his diploma in 1895.  He at once returned to Dayton and entered upon practice, in which he has been very successful.

The Hochwalt family are all devout Catholics, and are members of Emanuel parish, and socially stand very high in the esteem of the community.  In politics the doctor is a democrat, but is not a partisan, being more concerned in the study of his profession than in any interests foreign to it.

 

A. S. BYRNE NELLIS, M. D., [page 901] physician and surgeon of Dayton, Ohio, was born in Mount Vernon, Canada, October 5, 1860, and is a son of William G. and Mary E. (Byrne) Nellis, both now residents of Dayton.

Dr. Nellis resided in Canada until sixteen years of age, receiving in the meantime his elementary education at the district school and at Wesleyan college of Tilton, N. H., and was thus prepared for the study of medicine under Dr. William Nichol, of Brantford. After a due course of reading under this capable preceptor, young Nellis entered the university of Michigan at Ann Arbor, and after a special course of study in the medical department of that famous institution, completed his medical studies at the Homeopathic college of Chicago, from which he graduated with the class of 1882. He then began practice at Knightstown, Ind., where his initiatory experience was quite satisfactory, and in October, 1883, came to Dayton, where he has met with abundant success, not only as a general practitioner but as a specialist in the treatment of throat and lung affections—having taken a post-graduate course of study in this branch of therapeutics in a New York hospital college in 1895.  He has been honored by being selected physician to the Deaconess hospital of Dayton, and he also holds membership in the Montgomery county and Dayton Medical associations.  Fraternally he is a Knight of Pythias.

The marriage of Dr. Nellis took place in Brantford, Canada, February 27, 1889, to Miss Hattie Lyons, a daughter of Woods and Abbie (Colder) Lyons, and this union has been blessed with one child—William Lyons. The doctor and his wife are members of the Methodist Episcopal church, of which he is a respected official.

 

DARIUS WETZEL, [pages 901-902] carpenter and contractor, of Dayton, Ohio, was born in Frederick county, Md., June 4, 1839, came to Dayton with his parents in 1847, and this city has ever since been his home. He here learned the carpenter's trade in his youth, and enlisted, April 14, 1861, in company B, First Ohio volunteer infantry, for the three months' service.  At the expiration of his term he re-enlisted, in July, 1861, this time in company E, Sixtieth Ohio volunteer infantry, but on March 17, 1864, was transferred to the Seventy-fourth Ohio infantry, company E, in which regiment he served until July 10, 1865.  He was mustered out at Louisville, Ky., as sergeant—having served over four years.

Among the many severe engagements in which Mr. Wetzel took part during this long period of service, the most important may be thus enumerated: Stone River, Mission Ridge, Chickamauga, Kenesaw Mountain, Resaca, Dalton, Atlanta, Savannah, Goldsboro, and Jonesboro ( N. C.).  He served faithfully in all the marches, skirmishes and engagements in which his commands took part, and passed through all without a wound. On his return to Dayton, Mr. Wetzel resumed, and has ever since followed, the peaceful pursuit of his trade.

Daniel and Mary A. (Coover) Wetzel, the parents of Darius Wetzel, were natives of Maryland, and of German descent, Jacob Wetzel, the father of Daniel, being the founder of the family in America.  Louis Wetzel, an uncle of Darius, was the founder of Louisville, Ky., and maternally Darius is a nephew of Daniel Boone, the famous Kentucky pioneer.

Darius Wetzel was united in marriage, March 4, 1861, with Miss Mary C. Tobias, a native of Greene county, Ohio. To this marriage have been born six children, viz : Luella, wife of John B. Ankeney, a carpenter and builder, of Dayton; John H., who is a carmaker, in the employ of Barney & Smith ; George B., an architect and foreman for his father; Charles Edward, a graduate of Miami Commercial college, and now bookkeeper for a mercantile house in Dayton; Mary C., who is an organist, a member of the Woman's Relief corps, and living with her parents; and Darius, working with his father as a carpenter. The family are members of the Reformed church, of which Mr. Wetzel has been a deacon, for many years. In politics Mr. Wetzel is a republican, and for twelve years served as constable in Dayton.

Mr. Wetzel has been identified with the Grand Army of the Republic, as an active and enthusiastic worker in the order, and for two years has been commander of Dister post, No. 446. He is a member of Harris lodge, No. 331, I. 0. 0. F., having united with the fraternity many years ago, and is the present past grand of his lodge.

 

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