JONATHAN WEAVER, D. D. [pages 902-908] This venerable pioneer in the history of the A J United Brethren church enjoys the distinction of having served the church for a longer period of time than any other living bishop. In fact, it is doubtful if any layman or preacher can far exceed him in actual years of service. But this is not by any means Bishop Weaver's only distinction. Coming into existence before the first quarter of this century was completed, born of humble parentage in the thick backwoods of Ohio, he has successfully arisen through the various gradations of life, and has fully demonstrated that "there is always room at the top of the ladder of fame." His birth occurred on the 23d of March, 1824, in Carroll county, Ohio, and he was the youngest of twelve children, all of whom save himself and one sister have passed to the eternal beyond.
His parents were both natives of Washington county, Pa., and both were born the same year—probably about 1775. No reliable family records were kept, as the parents were uneducated save in the elements of the German language, and, like their pioneer neighbors, gave little heed to anything except the clearing up of their farm and providing for the comfort of their large family.
The paternal grandfather came from Germany about the year 1750 and lived for a time in Lancaster county, Pa. About 1752 he moved to Washington county, Pa., where he died. The maternal grandfather was born in this country, of German origin, and also settled in Washington county, Pa., in an early day. The parents of Bishop Weaver were married in Washington county, Pa., about 1798, and immigrated to Ohio twelve years later. The father was a moral and upright man, but never professed religion until he was sixty years of age, and died three years later. The mother was converted at about the same age, though she had always been religiously inclined and was a faithful and persistent Bible reader. After her conversion she was a very devoted and earnest Christian; and during the declining years of her life, spent much of her time in reading and prayer. She was exceptionally well informed upon the fundamental doctrines of the Scriptures and rendered much valuable assistance to her son as a young Christian and embryonic minister, he inheriting her temperament and much of her nature. The mother died in her eighty-seventh year.
Jonathan Weaver was reared on a farm amid the trials, privations, ignorance and hard labor of early pioneer days. There were no social castes in those days; all were upon the same level, equal in possessions, equal in ambition, and equal in incentives to hard labor. Amid these conditions young Weaver grew to manhood, having, as associates, the farmers' sons and daughters of the neighborhood, most of whom had no aspirations beyond those induced by their surroundings. The school-houses of those days were built of round logs, with a huge fireplace across one end of the school-room and light admitted through greased paper pasted over apertures left in the walls. The prevalent garb of the students was the red "womus," and other garments made of the product of the home loom, which was placed in the "parlor" of nearly every cabin. The scholars stood around the huge fireplace, filled with blazing logs contributed by the patrons of the school, and studied their lessons from the United States Spelling-book, or the Western Calculator, according to advancement. The little ones sometimes had their A. B. C's pasted or printed on a paddle and were expected to study diligently. The teachers made no pretentious to teaching any subject except those included in the "three R's," and a scholar was presumed to have graduated when he could figure through the single rule of three. Discipline was maintained by the application of birch or hickory "oil," and the stronger the teacher or master, the better the discipline. Often there was no floor except the earth, and the seats consisted of slabs or puncheons, smooth side up, with holes bored in the bottom corners at proper angels, and wooden legs driven in. It did not matter, then, if the feet of the little ones dangled afoot or two from the floor. In a school of this kind our subject learned to read, write and cipher. He early cultivated a taste for reading, and occasionally saw a newspaper, but books were scarce, and those to be had were not suited to young minds and desires.
There were no churches within reach, so that he never attended church or Sunday-school until he was fourteen years of age. Occasionally a Methodist or United Brethren circuit rider would preach in some neighbor's cabin, often in his father's; but their discussion of spiritual affairs only mystified him; he could not understand the plan of salvation, and though sincerely seeking the light, he knew of no one to whom he could go for counsel.
By reason of his father's misfortune in his financial affairs it became necessary for the family to seek a new home, and this change necessarily brought a change of surroundings, and while the loss of the old home was considered a great calamity to the family, it nevertheless proved a blessing in disguise to the young man. The change brought him in contact with rather better schools and decidedly better teachers. By reason of the family reverses, his labors were more than ever required on the little farm which they were able to purchase with the remnant of the proceeds of the sale of the former and larger one; but he managed to get three months' schooling each year, and employed all his leisure moments in reading and study. When he was about twenty-one years of age—his father being now dead—his mother increased his little store of funds until he was able to attend a five-months' term at a Presbyterian academy, located at Hagerstown, Ohio. This was the sum total of his education as far as the schools were concerned, though he never relinquished his efforts to inform himself at all times, and of course it is needless to add that he is today a man of extensive reading and general information. His religious career took tangible shape in his seventeenth year, while he was attending a camp-meeting. The first time the "mourners' bench was offered, he accepted the invitation without solicitation, being himself scarcely able to tell why he went. During the progress of the meeting he became a member of the United Brethren church. His religious life for several years following was not satisfactory to himself, and he had no one to whom he could go for much needed counsel. Within a year after he began his religious life, he had the great satisfaction of seeing the most of his father's family converted and united with the church.
When about nineteen years of age Mr. Weaver was elected class leader and served for two years. From the time of his conversion (in 1841) he felt that he ought to enter the ministry, but realized that he had no special qualification for the high calling; yet in those days an educated ministry was neither required nor desired among the common people. Fortunately he had a brother-in-law who was a young minister, and through his help he received some light on the doctrines of the gospel. He read what he could and studied more or less when about his work. When twenty years of age he was licensed to exhort, and six months afterward was licensed to preach the gospel. His first exhortations and first sermons—if sermons they could be called— were studied for the most part while following the plow. The conviction grew upon him that he must give his life to the ministry, but how creditably to fill that place he could not see. He had little to start with, except good health, a strong voice and an abundance of zeal—all desirable qualifications in the preacher. His term at the academy, which gave him a little start in educational matters, had also enabled him to form better habits of systematic study, or, rather, had taught him how to study.
In 1845 he was placed on a circuit by the presiding elder to fill a vacancy. During 1846 he taught school for a few months, studied, and worked on the farm the balance of the year; in February, 1847, he united with the Muskingum conference, under Bishop Russell; at this conference he received his first regular appointment, the name of the charge being Lake Erie mission. The mission was 200 miles round, had seventeen appointments, and there were twenty-three members. He says: "When time came to start for the mission, which was distant over 100 miles, I felt some misgivings, but would not suffer even my mother to know that my mind was in the least cloudy. I packed up my effects in an old-fashioned pair of saddle-bags, and took a hasty leave of home and friends and set my face toward the north." He soon increased the number of appointments to twenty-three, and filled them every three weeks. Eighty members were received into the church during the year and eighty dollars was paid him for his year's work.
Though a young man of robust constitution, the rigors of the winter spent on this work have never been forgotten. It was a year of trials and struggles, yet of great profit. At times, when awakening in the morning, he would find a half inch or more of snow spread on his bed, which had drifted in through the crevices in the cabin walls. Yet he was buoyed up with the knowledge that, in his own distant home, a dearly beloved mother was praying for him. He says: "You may call me weak, but during all the years I have spent in the ministry, I have always held sacred in my memory this thought: Mother prays for me. I presume to go to my grave with the fond and closely cherished recollections of a kind Christian mother."
Bishop Weaver continued to serve the church of his choice as an itinerant minister until 1851, when he was elected presiding elder, and was three times re-elected, declining a fourth re-election. As a pastor he was always more than ordinarily successful, his manner as a pulpit orator and companionable friend being such as to draw people to him and through him to seek for a higher life.
In 1857 he was a delegate to the general conference held at Cincinnati, and was by that body elected soliciting agent for Otterbein university. Having been a friend of the university for some years, he well knew its needs, and was very successful in raising the funds to perpetuate its existence. Though not entirely in sympathy with the management of the institution at that time, he was usually able to defend its policy and to show that it was the best that could then be done. He has always taken a firm stand on the question of higher education, and earnestly advocated the establishment of a church theological school long before that was thought possible. In fact, it is believed that the Union Biblical seminary is largely the outgrowth of his earnest labors.
His first election to the office of bishop occurred in 1861, but he resigned the office without entering upon its duties on the Pacific coast. In 1865 he was again elected and was placed upon the east Mississippi district, comprising the states of Indiana, Illinois and Michigan. Four years later he was placed in the east district, which comprised the states of Pennsylvania, eastern Ohio, Maryland, Tennessee and Virginia. During this quadrennial he visited the Pacific coast, and held conferences in California, Oregon and Washington territory, traveling about 1,300 miles by stage. At the general conference, held in Dayton in 1873, he was again elected to the bishop's office, Ohio district, which included the states of Ohio, Kentucky, and the dominion of Canada. In 1877 he was elected to the same office and placed in the east Mississippi district. In 1881 he was elected and assigned to the northwest district—the districts having been changed since the last conference. This district extended from Detroit, Mich., west, including Colorado. His sixth election occurred in 1885, and he has been elected at each quadrennial period since, having served over thirty years as one of the official heads of a great and prosperous church.
Bishop Weaver is still in active work, though, in deference to his age, his labors are made as light as possible, he having, in 1893, been elected bishop emeritus; however, in 1895, he held conferences on the Pacific coast and was active in his official duties. It will thus be seen that his ministerial work has extended over a period of fifty years in all, during which time he has traveled nearly all over the United States and Canada. Bishop Weaver has been officially connected with the legislation of the church for over thirty years, and perhaps no man in the United States is better informed upon its history than he. His policy has always been conservative and conciliatory, though firmly believing in and aiding in the recent reforms and changes in the constitutional law of the church. He believes that the period of prohibition of Freemasonry within the church has passed, though convinced that the time was when it was a wise provision of the church curriculum. As a writer, Dr. Weaver is plain and terse. No one can misunderstand his meaning. Besides being a regular contributor to the different church papers, he has written some pamphlets and several books which have been published in permanent form. The first of these was on the Resurrection of the Human Body; the second was entitled Divine Providence, a smaller volume treated of Ministerial Salary; while Universal Restoration is the title of another. He is the author of a work on Christian Baptism, and of another on Christian Theology. Throughout his writings there is apparent a vein of the humorous, which makes his work readable with that large class who are not specially interested in abstract theology. A characteristic of the man is his entire freedom from formality. He will meet, with a pleasant smile and hearty handshake, the lowest of God's creatures, and seek to win them to a new life by acts of love and brotherly kindness.
Bishop Weaver has been twice married. The bride of his youth was Miss Keziah L, Robb, of Mahoning county, Ohio, whom he wedded on the 24th of February, 1847. They lived together pleasantly and happily until she was removed by death about four years after marriage, leaving two daughters. In 1854 he married Miss Mary E. Forsyth, of Canton, Ohio. She is a most estimable lady and a valued helpmate. Nine children have blessed this second marriage.
In his younger years, the bishop had been a most perfect specimen of physical manhood, and although now past the "threescore and ten years" allotted to man, he stands erect, and shows his full stature of six feet four and a half inches, and bids fair to continue his useful labors for years to come.
BERNHARD MESCHER, [pages 908-909] of Dayton, was born in Cincinnati, Ohio, June 10, 1855. His parents, Joseph and Mary A. Mescher, were natives of Germany, and came to this country while young, their marriage occurring in Cincinnati, whence they came to Dayton in 1856. The father engaged first in the shoe business on Second street the same year, but in 1869 relinquished the shoe trade and opened a grocery on Washington street. In 1890 he closed out his business and retired, and in July. 1891, his death occurred. He was a member of St. Emanuel's Catholic church. His widow still lives in Dayton, residing at 123 Washington street. To the parents nine children were born, six of whom are still living, as follows: Bernhard; Mary, wife of John Hoban, ex-president of the Dayton city council, and at present a member of that body; Joseph, a molder of Dayton; Clara, wife of Raymond Lachey, a brass finisher; Henry, also a brass finisher, and George, a machinist, all of Dayton.
Bernhard Mescher was reared in Dayton, and was educated at St. Emanuel parochial school. He learned the machinist's trade with the Davis Sewing Machine company, and after three years' time was made shipping clerk and foreman of the sorting and packing department of the works, remaining with that company seven years.
In the spring of 1876 he left Dayton, going to Cincinnati, where he took a position as clerk in the clothing house of J. H. Richter, with whom he remained nine years, being manager of one of the departments the last two years of that time. In the fall of 1885 he returned to Dayton, and took a half interest in his father's grocery business on Washington street, and thus continued until the fall of 1887, when they dissolved, and he went into the grocery business for himself on the northeast corner of Cincinnati and Albany streets. He conducted that business until the spring of 1888, when he sold it out, and opened his present business in the fall of the same year at the southeast corner of the same streets.
Mr. Mescher was married on October 13, 1880, to Miss Annie M. Kemper, daughter of Henry and Margaret Kemper, of Cincinnati, Ohio, in which city she was born February 22, 1861. To this marriage two children have been born, as follows: Joseph, August 13, 1881, in Cincinnati; and Louis, June 10, 1884, in Covington, Ky.
Mr. Mescher has always been a member of the democratic party. In 1891 he was appointed a member of the Decennial Equalization board of Dayton, which board inspected every piece of property in the city. He is a member of St. Emanuel's Catholic church, and of Carroll commandery, No. 225, Catholic Knights of St. John; also of the St. Joseph's Catholic Orphans' society. In September, 1894, he was appointed by Mayor McMillin to the board of city infirmary directors, to fill a vacancy caused by the death of Charles Spatz, and served until the following spring.
SAMUEL CRAIGHEAD, [pages 909-910] late a distinguished member of the bar of Montgomery county, Ohio, was born June 16, 1817, in Cumberland county, Pa. In his youth he went to New York city, where he was for several years in the employ of a large publishing house. He prepared himself for the profession of the law, was admitted to the bar of Ohio, and became a resident of Dayton in 1844. Here he at once entered upon the practice, and in 1848 was elected to the office of prosecuting attorney, which he filled for two terms.
Mr. Craighead speedily attained prominence and wide reputation as a criminal lawyer, and during a period of forty years he was engaged upon one side or the other of well-nigh every criminal case of importance in the courts of this county, his practice extending also to other portions of the state. In about 1854 he formed a co-partnership with Wilbur Conover, and this became, and for a quarter of a century continued to be one of the leading and most successful legal firms in Ohio, when it was dissolved by reason of Mr. Conover's failing health.
In February, 1853, Mr. Craighead married Mrs. Jeannette A. Schenck, daughter of Judge William Miller, of Cincinnati, and widow of Lieut. Woodhull S. Schenck, of the United States navy. To this marriage were born three children: Robert G., Emanuel J. and Charles A. Craighead.
Samuel Craighead died September 6, 1894. Rightly to estimate the place he held in the community, and especially in the profession to which he had devoted his great gifts of intellect and eloquence, we turn to the words of the tribute paid to his life and character by his associates at the bar of Montgomery county. We quote from the memorial adopted by the Bar association following Mr. Craighead's lamented death:
"For nearly a quarter of a century he was the acknowledged leader of this bar. In these halls others contended with him as to the soundness of legal propositions or as to the effect of evidence, but no one hoped to triumph over him by personal superiority. The elements of his great professional success were, in part, the generous gifts of nature. His presence was attractive, his capacity for work was great, his mind was active and versatile, his judgment as to what should be offered or omitted in the trial of a cause was instinctive and accurate, and his power of dramatic presentation could hardly have been acquired. But these native qualities were strengthened and supplemented by a close and extensive study of the law, by a. careful preparation of all the causes in which he appeared, and by the zeal and fidelity which are prompted by an accurate appreciation of the high duty which a lawyer owes to his client. A clear conviction that the law is a profession, and not a trade, lay at the foundation of his success and was the corner stone of his professional character. It raised him to those intellectual and moral heights where controversies are courageous and honorable, where victories ennoble and defeats are not followed by shame.
"Most of us, upon our admission to the bar, found him in full practice, engaged in nearly all the important causes that were tried here, winning favorable judgment in most of them and in all adding to his reputation as a powerful and honorable advocate. Rejecting the overtures of those who desired to place him in public positions for which his talent so admirably fitted him, he was nevertheless a public man by virtue of his ability. In our professional circle he was the Great Commoner. We have all respected his character and emulated his success. Those of us have been most fortunate who have most clearly observed that honor and virtue made that success possible.
"In the trial of causes he was fearless and aggressive. He must have been conscious of his great powers as an advocate, though he was without arrogance.
"Loyalty and fidelity were prominent in his character. These qualities bound him firmly and closely to profession, to clients, to family, to friends, to truth, to country. He received patriotism by inheritance, and throughout his long and useful life he nurtured it by the faithful performance of those duties which every citizen owes to the state.
"In his later years his life showed a strange and beautiful blending of vernal and autumnal colors. To his own business and to that of his clients he brought the ripe fruit of long experience and much observation. But at home and office his friends were sure of a cheery welcome, and at the meetings of lawyers his favorite place was among the younger members of the bar, whom he encouraged by kind words and delighted with the sallies of wit which so often enlivened the court room and the social circle. It seems as though it were but yesterday that he passed among us with the erect figure, the elastic step, the natural vision and the cheery voice of youth.
"But age brought even to him its inevitable infirmities, and compelled his gradual abandonment of active professional duties. Yet he never ceased to teach us by his exemplary conduct. When the twilight deepened, his life became a perpetual benediction upon all whom he met and all whom he had ever known.
"The memory of his talents, his virtues and his kindness will remain .to us a valued heritage. But we cannot cherish the hope that we shall ever meet a manlier man."
WILLIAM LAWRENCE BLOCHER, [page 910] superintendent of the manufacturing department of the United Brethren Publishing house, Dayton, Ohio, was born in Celina, Ohio, May 25, 1854, and is the youngest son of Judge W. L. Blocher, who lost his life on the battle field, while in the Union service during the late Civil war. Left an orphan at the age of eleven years, he worked for five years in Logan county as a farmer's lad, receiving, as compensation, his board and clothing and three months' schooling each year, during the winter season, and this in a common country school.
In 1869, Mr. Blocher began learning the printing trade under the Hon. A. P. J. Snyder, proprietor of the Mercer County Standard, served until 1873, and in the latter year came to Dayton, and went to work for the United Brethren Publishing house. In 1881, he was promoted to be foreman of his department, and in 1893 was advanced to his present position—thus making a continuous term of service, to date, of twenty-four years.
Mr. Blocher was united in marriage, September 16, 1886, with Miss Elizabeth Butterfield, daughter of A. A. Butterfield, and this union has resulted in the birth of one daughter, Helen. Mr. Blocher enjoys the sincere regard of the citizens of Dayton and the esteem of every employee under his jurisdiction, as well as the thorough confidence of the house by which he is employed.
OTHO EVANS FRANCIS, [page 911] physician and surgeon of Dayton, Ohio, has been a resident of Dayton since 1881.
He was born at Franklin, Warren county, Ohio, August 30, 1851, and is a son of Adonijah and Cynthia (Bergen) Francis, the former of whom is still living in Warren county, at the age of eighty years, and the latter of whom is deceased. The family is of New England and French Huguenot extraction. The Francis family have usually turned their attention to agriculture, while the Bergen family have for the most part become members of some one of the professions.
Adonijah Francis, father of Dr. Francis, has always been a farmer, and he and his wife. Cynthia, reared a family of eight children, as follows: Tobias, a farmer and auctioneer of Carlisle, Ohio, Lydia, wife of William Anderson, of Johnson county, Kans; Richard, a farmer of Preble county, Ohio; Mary, deceased wife of D. Vandemire, of Grinnell, Iowa; Cornelia, wife of Joseph Summers of Dayton, Ohio; Otho E., the subject of this sketch; George B., a farmer of Carlisle, Ohio, and Sallie, wife of Clinton Mitchell, of Carlisle, Ohio.
Otho E. Francis received his education in the academy at Birmingham, Iowa, conducted by his uncle, George Bergen, and afterward at Mount Pleasant Normal school and at Monmouth college, Ill. Having thus acquired an excellent literary education he began the reading of medicine, taking one course in the medical department of the university of Michigan, and one course of study at the Ohio Medical college at Cincinnati, Ohio. He then attended the college of Medicine and Surgery at Cincinnati, after which he was engaged for three years in practice at Camden, Preble county, Ohio. In order further to prepare himself for his professional career he attended the Medical college at Louisville, Ky., graduating in the class of 1878. Here he took a special course, and received a special diploma, in diseases of women. Returning to Camden, Ohio, he remained there in practice four years, and in 1881, as stated above, removed to Dayton, where he has since been engaged in successful practice.
Dr. Francis is a member of the Montgomery county Medical society, and is examining physician for the Protected Home circle. He was married August 13, 1871, to Miss Lillian Woodside, daughter of Robert Woodside, who was born in Somerdale, Butler county, but who was reared in Glendale, Hamilton county, Ohio. Dr. and Mrs. Francis have two children, viz: Paul and Adonijah, both students. Dr. Francis is a strong republican in politics, and has acceptably filled the position of city physician. He and his wife are members of the Presbyterian church.
CHARLES F. KIMMEL, [pages 911-913] an ex-soldier of the late Civil war, and now residing in Dayton, Ohio, was born in the city of Langensalza, Prussia, Germany, October 15, 1843, and is a son of Augustus B. and Johanna Louise (Gentzle) Kimmel. The father, Augustus B., was also born in Langensalza in 1806—that city being famous as the scene of one of the great battles between the German and Austrian armies in 1866. Augustus was a miller, and after coming to Dayton, in 1846, worked at his trade for some years, and died May 16, 1895. His widow survived until January 26, 1807, when she passed away aged seventy-three years, and they are both buried in Woodland cemetery. They had five children, beside Charles F., viz: Christian, who was killed at Manteno, Ill., in a railroad accident while returning from the world's fair—his wife being crippled for life in the same accident; a son who died in infancy; Caroline, wife of George W. Fishbaugh, died in Roseville, Ohio, at the age of sixty-one; Harriet, the wife of Jacob Stolz, of the Ninety-third Ohio infantry, who was killed at Stone River, December 31, 1862, his widow dying September 5, 1865, and Mrs. Roepken, a widow of a soldier of company G, Sixty-sixth Illinois, who died October 3, 1895.
Charles F. Kimmel was brought by his parents to America when a mere babe, and Dayton has ever since been his home, with the exception of the time he was in the army or away on a journey through the west, which lasted five years. His education was somewhat neglected in youth, but he has since made good this deficiency by hard study. At the outburst of the Rebellion he made an effort to enlist in the three-months service, but, being then a minor, his father prevented him. However, on October 1, 1861, he succeeded in enlisting in John W. Birge's regiment of sharp-shooters, which, April 20, 1862, became known as the Western sharpshooters, and was attached to the Fourteenth Missouri infantry, but, November 26, 1862, was merged into the Sixty-sixth Illinois infantry. With this regiment he served all through the war, and was honorably discharged July 15, 1865, at Camp Butler, near Springfield, Ill.
Among the haps and mishaps encountered by Private Kimmel, while in the army, may be mentioned the following: He captured a rebel mail rider at Fort Donelson, February 16, 1862; was slightly wounded in the head May 21, 1862; captured a rebel flag May 31, 1862, at Corinth; was captured by the rebels at Pine Ridge, but escaped within eight hours; was slightly wounded in the thigh at Rome Cross Roads, May 16, 1864; was wounded in the leg at Dallas, May 31, 1864; was slightly wounded in the right knee at Kenesaw Mountain, June 27, 1864, and was the first man of company G, Sixty-sixth Illinois, to re-enlist in the veteran service, at Pulaski, Term., in December, 1863.
After his return from the war, Mr. Kimmel was appointed as an assistant in collecting and burying the remains of fallen soldiers at Fort Donelson, Shiloh and Corinth, but in a few months resigned. He then devoted his time to a tour in the south, and after an absence of seventeen months returned home for rest. He then started on a tour west, which lasted over four years, and during which he visited Leavenworth, Hayes City, and Marino, N. M., where, from March until August, he worked in the gold mines; had fights with Indians June 28, 1868, at White Pass, N. M.; at Big Timbers, Colo., August 28, 1868, and at Kiowa Creek, August 29; went to Colorado and worked in a gold mine at Central City for three months; then went on foot to Cheyenne, Wyo.; thence he worked his way on the Union Pacific railroad to Ogden, Utah, in 1869; walked to Boise City, Idaho; from there he went on foot to Walla Walla; thence down the Columbia river to Portland, Ore.; thence by steamer to San Francisco, where he enlisted to go with the German army to the Franco-Prussian war, but was stayed by the French consul, and after four months in California returned home.
September 26, 1871, Mr. Kimmel married Miss Kate Stephens, a native of Germany, but who was brought to this country when four years old. To this union nine children were born, viz: Harriet Pauline, Elmer Ellsworth, Mary Willamette, W. T. Sherman and James B. McPherson (twins who died in infancy), Ida May, Atlanta Garfield (deceased), Joseph Donelson and Charlotte Stephens. The living members of this family are members of the German Evangelical church, in which faith Mr. Kimmel was reared. In politics he has always been a strong republican, and fraternally he is a member of Old Guard post, No. 23, G. A. R. For a time he served on the Dayton police force, but has been in the employ of the United States Express company for the last sixteen years. He owns a beautiful home at No. 214 East Adams street, and being a constant reader, possesses a fine library, comprising chiefly historical works and books of reference. He has been true to every trust as citizen and soldier, and has an enviable military record.
COL. ROBERT PATTERSON, [page 913] father of Jefferson Patterson and grandfather of John H. Patterson, of Dayton, and whose name was so closely identified with the histories of the states of Kentucky and Ohio during the latter years of the eighteenth century, was born in 1753, in Bedford county, Pa., and began his military career as a member of a company of rangers raised to protect the frontier of his native state from Indians. When twenty-one, he and several other young men started in boats from Fort Pitt for Kentucky, with nine horses and fourteen head of cattle, and supplies, implements and ammunition. At Limestone Creek, in Kentucky, they met, "guarding a little corn patch with their tomahawks," Simon Kenton and Thomas Williams, the only white men in what is now that state. In 1777 Patterson and his party cleared land and planted corn near a big spring, naming their camp "Lexington," in honor of the Revolutionary battle. Later he entered land and laid out the city at this point. In 1787 he was one of the founders of Cincinnati. He accompanied Gen. George Rogers Clark in the Illinois campaign in 1778, and Col. Bowman in the expedition against the Shawnee towns at old Chillicothe in 1779; served as captain in 1780 in Gen. Clark's raid on old Chillicothe and old Miami, was in command of a company of Logan's regiment in Clark's campaign, in 1782, against Indians at Piqua, on the Miami, and at Laramie. Col. Logan's command camped three days at the mouth of Mad river; that is to say, at Dayton. In 1786 Patrick Henry, governor of Virginia, commissioned Robert Patterson a colonel in the State Line. In 1786 his regiment of Col. Logan's division marched to destroy the Macacheek towns on Mad river. But for these battles and victories over the Indians, in which Col Patterson was for many years engaged, the Dayton settlement would have been an impossibility. His part in the history of this city is of the greatest importance, for he helped win its site from the Indians, and secured a peaceful and prosperous home for the pioneers. He was present with his regiment at St. Clair's defeat in 1791. In the war of 1812 he had charge of transportation of supplies from Camp Meigs, near Dayton, north to the army. All his later years he was a sufferer from wounds received in his campaigns. The above facts are gleaned from "Early Dayton."
JOHN JACOB SPATZ, [pages 913-914] of No. 445 North Main street, Dayton, Ohio, is a native of this city and was born September 25, 1866, and is of German. parentage, his parents, Sylvester and Frances (Schaffer) Spatz, having both been born in Bavaria.
Sylvester Spatz was a blacksmith by trade and came to America a single man and shortly after his arrival met and married Miss Schaffer, the union resulting in the birth of six sons and two daughters. Of this family four are still living, viz: Carrie, wife of George Helmick, who resides on Hickory street, Dayton; John J., the subject; Alexander is a grocer of Harrison township, Montgomery county, and Frank is employed in the Davis Mantel & Grate works of Dayton. The four deceased were named Charles J., Emile, Mary and John, the last named of whom died in early infancy. The mother of this family was called from earth January 12, 1882, dying in the faith of the Catholic church, and the father, who in his later years had become a baker and had made through his industry a snug fortune, died March 20, 1888, in the same religious faith.
John J. Spatz was educated in the Dayton city schools, and thoroughly learned the baker's trade under his father—a business he followed fourteen years. June 25, 1890, he married Miss Mary Sullivan, a native of Crawfordsville, Ind., and a daughter of Timothy and Mary (McCaffry) Sullivan, and this union has been blessed with two children.—Marie and Helen— the youngest of whom died at the age of nineteen months. Mr. Spatz owns the premises at the address given above, and in 1890 relinquished the baking business and opened a well-ordered saloon, which his pleasant and genial disposition has rendered quite popular. Mr. and Mrs. Spatz are respected members of Emanuel's Roman Catholic church, and strictly conform to its teachings. In his politics Mr. Spatz is a democrat, and during the presidential campaign of 1896 was a strong advocate of free silver.
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