Johnson County, Indiana

Isaac and Jacob Sutton were brothers, and sons of James Sutton, and cousins of Jonathan and James Sutton. They emigrated from Preble County, Ohio. Isaac came first to Marion County, Ind., with a relative, in the year 1821 or 1822, unmarried, and worked with unceasing efforts to earn money enough to buy a piece of land, earning the greater part of $100 by splitting rails at 25 cents a hundred. So soon as he had obtained the last piece, he started on foot to Brookville, the place of entry, to secure the prize, all the way fearing that, on examination, some piece might be found spurious, for he possessed no reserve to fill the place. His money proved to be good, and he became the owner, on the 4th day of February, 1823, of the west half of the northeast quarter of Section 9, Township 13 north, Range 3 east, situate in White River Township. This tract he ever afterward called the "home place," and, while he would give his children any part of his lands when he was distributing them, yet he always, excepted the "home place." In the fall of 1824 or 1825, he returned and married Alice Watts, and settled on the "home place," where she still resides. Isaac Sutton, following up the policy of his early manhood, acquired about six hundred acres of as fine land as is in White River Township. He died February 18, 1869, aged sixty four years and ten months. He left eight sons and daughters, but, since his death, one half are already dead.

He came to White River Township from Ohio, on foot, with a pack on his back and twenty five or thirty dollars as the sum total of his wealth. He did not, however, sit down and repine over the smallness of his fortune, but, with a stout heart, went to work, and soon found the means to enter eighty acres of land for his home place, and he, moreover, called in an energetic assistant in the person of Abagail Doty, daughter of John Doty, the old pioneer, by authority of Thomas Lowe, Esq., on the 21st day of November, 1825, and located on the east half of the southeast quarter of Section 18, Township 13 north, Range 3 east, near the Bluffs. By uniting a small tannery with his farm, and practicing strict economy, he secured a competency, and, although the good wife has long since ceased her labors and gone to receive a glorious reward, yet the old pioneer still lives, and still manages, by taking in a widowed kinswoman, to run a house of his own.
He is stout and cheerful, and now seventy eight years of age. He has two sons and a son-in-law in the township, who, in industry and economy and good citizenship, walk in the footsteps of their worthy, venerable and aged father.

The son of Jacob Sutton, is the finest example for a poor young man to emulate that can be found in Johnson County. Like his father, he began with little assistance, and, by patient, persevering industry and economy, has acquired the means to purchase the old Col. Wishard farm, and also another tract adjoining — in all, about five hundred acres, being one among the finest farms in the county. He is also among the best farmers in the county.

He emigrated from Nicholas County, Ky., to White River Township, early in the fall of 1825, and located on the northwest quarter of Section 28, Township 14 north, Range 3 east. He soon extended his ownership by the entry of 300 acres of the rich, overflowed adjoining bottom lands. Assisted by the labors of six sons and hired help, he soon opened a large farm, extending nearly to White River. The bottom lands were protected from overflow by the erection of heavy embankments. But, in the midst of his success in business, his wife died, on the 12th day of August, 1849. She was a good woman, of unusual equanimity, prudence and economy. Although her death did not quite dissolve his family, yet this, and the near approach to manhood of his sons, and the death of two of them, with the settled purpose of three of them to withdraw from the farm to qualify for professional life, soon limited his operations. He soon made a disposition of his farm for the benefit of his children, and thus, in great measure, withdrew from his accustomed laborious life. Two of his sons are eminent practitioners of medicine, and a third one eminent as a preacher in the Presbyterian Church, who has chosen a continent as the wide field of his evangelical labors. One only of his sons follows the vocation of a farmer. Two only of his daughters yet live — Mrs. Robert Jennings and Mrs. Dr. Noble. Col. Wishard was a man of great physical strength and activity in body, and of equal activity of mind. He was a military man, and was delighted with the pomp and display of military movements. Soon after his arrival, he was elected Colonel of the county militia, the duties of which he continued to exercise with ability so long as these services were required by law. He was one of the bloody three hundred " that volunteered in the BlackHawk war. None contributed more to build up and make this new country than Col. Wishard. In log-rollings, house-raisings and other field operations, he was always on hand. He was kind- hearted, and was at the bedside of the sick and dying on all occasions. If any were in distress and needed assistance, they had only to make it known to receive it. He often disobliged himself to accommodate others. No man suffered more in his family than he. From the year 1833 to 1851, six members died, and, during the last six years, his wife and two sons and a daughter — the last the youngest, aged fifteen years — died from malarial diseases. He was full of jocularity, but sometimes carried his jokes too far and gave offense. He was unique in his opinions, believing that he was right, and they who differed with him, wrong, and was often surprised that others would not, or could not, be convinced by his arguments and see as he did. " You know better," was a set phrase with him. He was fond of political discussions, and, when he became much interested in his subject, used strong language, which often estranged those with whom he was associated and who differed from him. This rendered him unpopular. He lived to a ripe old age, and died on the 8th day of September, 1878, aged seventy -eight, years and two months, and sleeps, near the scenes of his labors and sufferings, in the cemetery at Genn's Valley.

The son of Samuel Smith, is an emigrant from Lewis County, Ky., to Perry Township, Marion County, Ind., where he arrived on the 23d day of March, 1822. He was married to Nancy Dean at Lawrenceburg, Ind., January 18, 1821. In December, 1823, he bargained, together with William Stallcup. who was married to his sister, for eighty acres of land in White River Township, Smith getting the west, and Stallcup the east half. Here he remained two years, and then sold and entered the east half of the northeast quarter, Section 26, Township 14 north, Range 3 east, and continued there till 1832, when he again changed his location to the west half of the southeast quarter of Section 36, in said town and range, where he has remained ever since. Mr. Smith is a fine specimen of the old pioneer, and was subjected to as many hardships and labors as any man in the township. Several years since, three grown children died within a short time of typhoid fever. He is now eighty years of age and Mrs. Smith eighty-three. They had lived as husband and wife fifty-eight years, on the 23d day o£ March last. They are a good, honest, upright family.

He was a Pennsylvanian, who emigrated to Mercer County, Ky., and, in December, 1826, to White River Township. He was a good house carpenter, industrious and strictly honest. He died September 25,1840, aged sixty-three years and four months. He left a widow, but no children. His widow died in July, 1862, seventy-seven years of age.

He was also a Pennsylvanian, but emigrated to Mercer County, Ky. He was out while he lived in that State on an expedition in the war of 1812, along with the Kentucky troops, where he did effective service and was honorably discharged, and returned home in the beginning of the year 1813. He was married, during that year, to Jane Vanrarsdall. In the fall of 1825, he emigrated to the neighborhood of Greenwood ; here he remained two years and then located on the east half of the northeast quarter of Section 25, Township 14 north, Range 3 east, where he remained till the day of his death, February 22, 1878, aged eighty-five years ten months and twelve days. He was a tanner and farmer, industrious and economical, and no man could excel him in the performance of the arduous duties belonging to pioneer life. Both he and Mrs. Lyons were hospitable and kind to a fault. She still survives him and is now eighty-seven years old, and still active in body and mind. The old homestead is owned and controlled by Mr. Carder and his good lady, the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Lyons, and is still run in the same hospitable channel. Mr. Lyons left two sons, Harvey S. and John M., who adjoin the old homestead, and a daughter, Mrs. Jennings, of Franklin. Their character is sufficiently high among their neighbors and needs no commendation from the writer.

He emigrated from Nicholas County, Ky., in the fall of 1823. His mother was a widow, and for several years before, as well as after coming to White River Township, they constituted a family. He settled on a charming tract of land, the west half of the southeast quarter of Section 27, Township 14 north, Range 3 east. He was industrious and lifted his ax with great effectiveness among the green timber. He married Miss Rebecca Smith soon after coming, who seconded every effort of her husband to secure a good living, and made him a most agreeable companion. The Captain was the first Constable, under Archibald Glenn, Esq., who was his brother-in-law, and was, soon after he came to the township, elected Captain of a company of militia composed of his neighbors. I can yet see him and his company drawn up on parade. The Captain was a large man and was well dressed in military costume; his hat bore a tall red plume in its front, and now, with sword in hand, and in a sonorous voice that sounded afar off, he spoke, " Attention, the Company ! " He was a good officer, and few men could excel him in training a company in the elements of the military art. He was a great joker, a loud talker, and could laugh as loud as any man living, and no man did more to cheer the gloom of the desponding settler, and laugh away hypochondria than he ; he was open and free and kind hearted. He yet lives in Pleasant Township much changed by age from what he once was ; he had some faults and many good qualities ; we played and laughed and sported together in youth ; I cannot forget him, with all his faults.

He was a brother of Archibald Glenn, Esq. He came to Indiana from Nicholas County, Ky., at the same time with his brother, and, although he owned land from the beginning, in the township, was not willing to encounter its wildness. He, therefore, rented a farm in Decatur County and remained there two years. He came to White River Township in 1823, and immediately began to construct a mill to be propelled by the waters of Pleasant Run. The mill was adapted to grinding corn only, and had but a single run of nigger-head buhrs. It did well and supplied the township with meal for five or six years, when it was superseded by still better mills and went down. In 1827, he sold his mill and 240 acres of land to the Turner brothers and left for Illinois to better his condition. He was skillful, industrious and honest, and had an intelligent family. He has been dead many years.

Henry Hardin died in Nicholas County, Ky., in October, 1825, leaving a widow, Catharine Hardin, and ten children — five males and five females. At the time of his death, he was making arrangements to move with all his children to Johnson County, Ind. He owned in White River and Perry Townships, Marion County, Ind., several hundred acres of land, and had also contributed to several of his children the means to purchase a home in Johnson County. Thomas and Benjamin, both married, came to White River Township in the fall of 1824. Thomas located on a part of Section 35 and 36 in Township 14 north, Range 3 east, Benjamin on the southwest quarter of said Section 35, but before they had realized any benefits from their labors in 1830 and 1831, sold out and moved to the State of Illinois. John Waddle and Mahlon Seybold, who married Hardin's daughter settled in White River Township. Waddle, after several years of hard labor, sold and also moved West. Mahlon Seybold lived many years in White River Township, held the offices of Assessor and Justice of the Peace to public acceptance, and died in Indianapolis in June, 1861. John Waddle and Samuel Doty operated a whip- saw for several years and made the first plank in the township cut with a saw. In October, 1827, the widow, with the rest of the family, arrived. In August, 1833, three single full-grown members of the family, Mark, Elihu and Elizabeth died in one week, in one room with congestive fever. Franklin, the youngest of the family alone remains, all but him being dead. In 1825, his mother and himself examined this county and saw many new things already told. He has held several public offices, and has contributed his mite to the welfare of the county.

Abraham Sells was a Virginian from Washington County. He left there on the 24th day of December, 1820, in a wagon, with a large family, and reached Washington County, Ind., about the middle of February. Leaving the female members of his family in that county, accompanied by his brother, John Sells, and four of John's sons, and three of his own, Isaac, William and Franklin, he set out for White River, and reached Jacob Whetzel's about the 1st of March. Following the old Indian trace up the left bank of the river, on the 3d day of March, 1821, he entered White River Township, and took possession of the old Indian wigwam of Capt. White, situate forty rods north of Honey Creek, and near the middle of the northwest quarter of Section 32, Township 14 north. Range 3 east, now known as the Denny place. They brought along seventy-five head of hogs, eleven head of cattle, eight head of horses, together with sugar kettles, and a goodly assortment of tools and provisions for the summer, intending to bring their families in the fall. The stock were mostly turned to the woods to find their own fare. They now concluded to operate together, and having seven able-
bodied men and a boy, soon brushed out in the old Indian field five or six acres, which they inclosed with a temporary fence to keep out their own stock, no other being near, and planted in it corn. West of the river was an old hackberry deadening, containing fifteen acres, requiring but little labor to bring it into cultivation. In the year 1820, and in some years subsequent, a small green worm stripped the hackberry trees of all their leaves, killing them in a few weeks. This deadening required no fencing, especially against hogs, and was also planted with corn. Sells and his company were driven out of the low valley once or twice by high water. When the corn on the east of the river was in a forward state toward maturity, the hogs broke through the hasty fence and destroyed all. When the labor of raising the crop was over, all, except two of Two deaths occurred the same fall in Blue Biver Township.— D. D. B.
the company, who were left to care for it, returned, intending to bring their families and settle permanently in their location. But John Sells, Abraham's brother, and Isaac, Abraham's son, took sick and died. Abraham, with his two remaining sons and three nephews, John, William and Abraham, returned late in the fall. John Sells crossed the river and settled in Morgan County. William bought a tract along the west line of the county and west of the river, and remained there several years, and then sold out and left the State. Abraham subsequently went back to Washington County, Ind., and took a wife and became a permanent citizen of White River Township, where he reared a family of two sons — Samuel and Jesse, worthy representatives of a worthy sire — and several daughters of equal respectability, all of whom are still among us. He died July 16, 1867, aged sixty-two years. Abraham Sells. Sr., having a large family, built a house near his original camp, and resided there two years, suffering continually from fever and ague. He then moved eastward two miles, and located on a healthy place, and there remained till he died, on the 5th of March, 1846, aged sijfty-three years. William Sells, son of Abraham, settled in the southeast quarter of Section 34, Township 14 north, and also reared a family. He died there November 22, 1864, aged sixty-nine years. His wife died subsequently, but a part of the heirs still hold and yet occupy the old homestead.

Between the 3d and 10th of March, 1821, Thomas Lowe and Eleanor Lowe, his wife, with four sons and as many daughters, several of the latter being married, entered White River Township, and located on the southeast quarter of Section 8, Township 13 north, Range 3 east. They were well supplied with cash, and entered some of the most beautiful lands in the township. Every member of the original family is dead and gone. Thomas Lowe, Jr., was one of the two Justices of the Peace first elected in the township. His brother Abraham afterward held the same office. The widow of Abraham and one son still occupy a part of the old homestead. The Lowes were an intelligent and respectable people, and natives of North Carolina.


He lived near Bloomington, Ind., came into White River Township about the middle of March, 1821. He bought a team, consisting of two horses, and a wagon and provisions for the summer. His purpose was to clear a field, plant and raise corn, and bring his family in the fall. He built a camp just below the mouth of Pleasant Run, near Abraham Sells, on a tract of low, overflowed land. He cleared a field and planted his corn. Some time late in the summer, his horses escaped, and this so discouraged him that he sold out to Sells and abandoned the country.


He came from Hamilton County, Ohio, near North Bend, along the Whetzel trace, and built a camp on the southeast quarter of the northeast quarter of Section 16, Township 13 north, Range 3 east, in White River Township, on the 8th day of May, 1821. Next morning, he and his sons, Peter and Samuel, began to clear land and make rails, preparatory to raising some corn. Four acres were soon cleared and planted, but their expectations were blasted, for as soon as the ears began to appear, the raccoons entered like a herd of hogs, and never ceased their depredations until the last nubbin was gone. A full history of this family would make a volume. They made several trips to Connersville for breadstuffs. They were for weeks without anything to eat except hastily dried venison. Peter and Samuel deserve to have a monument to perpetuate the recollection of their labors. The number of rails made by them, the number of acres of land cleared up, the miles of new roads cut out, the number of cabins built, would startle the belief of the present population. On one occasion, they took their axes and a few dollars in money and walked forty miles to Strawtown, above on White River. Daniel Etter, hereafter mentioned, with his big Virginia ax and his steelyards, went with them. They all remained, doing any kind of labor, till a good supply of corn was laid in. They then made two large dug-outs from a poplar tree, filled them with corn, and descended White River, and landed at the mouth of Honey Creek, to the great joy and relief of their families. John Doty had four sons, George, Peter, Samuel and William, and still more daughters. He died January 29, 1856, aged seventy-eight years and ten months. They are all gone except Samuel and William. Peterwas appointed the first Assessor for the township. They were all honest, industrious people, and had little to start with, except strong arms and unconquerable wills to execute their purposes, and to overcome every opposing obstacle.


In the fall of 1821, in a partnership conveyance, there came from Kentucky Daniel Boaz and James Ritchey with their families. Judge Boaz was a native of Virginia ; but at some period of life, had emigrated to Kentucky, and thence to White River Township. He had been unfortunate, having had first and last
three wives. He purchased and located on a pretty elevation just a mile from the western line of the county, on the northeast quarter of Section 19, and the west half of the northwest quarter of Section 20, Township 13 north, Range 3 east, now owned by Jacob Tresslar. Here he lost his second wife, whose grave is to be seen in the midst of a cultivated farm, on the first tract of land described. He was a man of general knowledge, and possessed of more than an ordinary share of intellectual vigor. He was elected at the first election held in the county, on the 8th day of March, 1823, one of the Associate Judges, which office he continued to hold for fourteen years. He was a fine specimen of the old Virginia gentleman, and of unbending dignity. He was affable, polite and kind, and was highly useful in imparting knowledge to his neighbors of legal matters, and, in their distress, when sick, and no doctor could be procured, in advising and contributing medicine for their relief. His third wife was a daughter of Benjamin Mills. For long years, his health was poor, yet he lived to extreme old age, and died about ten years since. He had a large family of children ; but many of them are dead, and the rest, except one son, are scattered in distant States.


He was a Kentucky gentleman of unusual suavity of manners, well informed, a fluent talker, and capable of imparting to his neighbors on almost any subject useful and correct information. He, as well as his companion, Judge Boaz, was often called on for advice in legal matters. He was elected, at the first election, a County Commissioner. He located on the northwest quarter of Section 19, Township 13 north, Range 3 east, where he remained to the day of his death, on May 14, 1858, aged seventy-five years and two months. He had a small family of children, one only of whom now remains in the county. Thus, the history of the pioneers of 1821 has been fully given.


Sometime in October, 1822. Archibald Glenn and family, from Nicholas County, in the State of Kentucky, arrived, and became permanent residents of the township. He located on the north line of the county, on the northeast quarter of Section 28, Town 14 north, of Range 3 east, where he continued to reside till the day of his death. It cannot be fairly charged as a disparagement to others, when I say that he was pre-eminently the father to the north half of the township. He was in all respects fully qualified to lead in every industry. No man ever wielded a seven-pound ax more effectively or continuously during the time the farms were being made. I can see him yet, with his Kentucky ax, pole and bit equally heavy, severing large branches from the trunk of a fallen tree at a single stroke, with unequaled skill and terrific blows, and, with a broad-ax large enough to tax the powers of a giant, not in delicate, faint, timid touches, but standing erect, and swinging the ax in a radius the full length of his arm, and with unerring precision and overhand blows, and advancing at quick steps from end to end, scattering and strewing the flying chips far away in every direction. He was the leader at house-raisings and log-rollings, and, by his skill and sound judgment in these laborious duties, accomplished great results with incredible celerity. In short, he was skillful in every work to be done in a new country. He was the finest marksman with a rifle in the State, and could shoot "off-hand" twenty squirrels through the head without a miss. But above all this is the fact that he was an honest man. No dishonest or immoral act received any support from him. He was chosen one of the Justices of the Peace at the first election in 1823, and was admired for his unflinching honesty in office. He was chosen one of the Board of Township Trustees in 1852. He was ever ready to render assistance and comfort and consolation to the sick and the dying. He died a Christian, full of blessed hope of a happy immortality beyond the grave. His death waa regretted by all. He left three sons and two daughters to heir the homestead. Austin Glenn, the youngest, died not many years after his father. Archibald Glenn, Esq., resided near the line, on the Marion County side. Andrew W. Glenn resides in White River Township. They are good farmers, have a good supply of this world's goods, and tread in the footsteps of their worthy father.

Along with Archibald Glenn came John Murphy, a nephew of Glenn by marriage. He located near his uncle, but all his hopes and those of his family were cut down in his sudden death two years after his arrival.


The Culvers were from East Tennessee, and came to this township in October, 1822. They located their homes on the beautiful, rolling, sandy lands in the northern part of the township, on the northwest quarter of Section 34. They were industrious and economical, and soon added greatly to their limited goods, by their fine crops of corn and wheat. The family of Benjamin was small, and, after ten or fifteen years, he left the county. Nathan remained on his location, and, at the death of his wife, was rich in lands, but her death and the marriage of his daughters broke up his family. They were scattered in all directions. He followed several sons and a daughter to Iowa, and there died many years since. They were a short-lived people, and the name is now only borne in the State by a single son, Mr. Elihu Culver, of Spencer, a gentleman of wealth and distinction ; however, two grandchildren of the old gentleman still live in the township.


In October, 1822, Nathaniel St. John and family, from Western Ohio, settled on a part of Sections 26 and 27, in Township 14 north, of Range 3 east, on the south bank of Pleasant Run. He was a queer man, and was called a Yankee by his neighbors, and was believed to possess a large share of cunning, like other Yankees, yet he always stood fair among them as an honest man, until, in an unexpected moment in 1838, he turned out a trader in fat hogs, which he drove to Lawrenceburg to find a market. Finding no market, he packed them and shipped them to Mississippi, to find a market there, but in vain. He failed, and all his property was sacrificed to pay his debts. In an attempt to save himself from complete ruin, he remained in Mississippi for two years, and there died. He was naturally a machinist, and built a small mill on the creek in the year 1830, which, although it served its day, yet was not instrumental in increasing his wealth.


They came in a group together from the State of Virginia, and settled in the south part of the township, in the fall of 1822. Daniel Etter took a lease first, and lived several years on the school section. Like many another, he was in low circumstances when he came. On one occasion soon after his arrival, when Peter Doty and Samuel, his brother, set out for Strawtown, in Hamilton County to procure corn, he also needing bread-corn, determined to go with them, take his ax along, with its big Virginia pole much heavier than the bit, and seek by his labor to procure needful supplies. He had no money and nothing portable to purchase with except a pair of steelyards having a draft of 300 pounds. With his ax and steelyards, he followed the Dotys, and overtook them four miles on the road. He had fine luck, for he sold his steelyards at a big price, and by his labors gathered up thirty bushels of corn, which he brought down White River in a dug-out. This event with the balances was the balancing point in his life. He was a blacksmith. He worked when he could get anything to do. Every coin was laid away. His wife seconded every movement. By the time his lease expired, he had the money to buy eighty acres of land south of Waverly. He lived to an old age and died in affluent circumstances. Why should any man despair?


Brown and Etter were brothers-in-law. He finally located on on Bluff Creek, in Section 29, Township 13 north, of Range 3 east, on a very pleasant piece of land, and improved it well. Thirty years ago, he sold this farm and emigrated to Illinois, to better his circumstances. He was an honest and industrious man.


He was an old man when he came to the township. He had three sons — Peter, Michael and Joseph. He purchased and located on the west half of the northwest quarter of Section 21, Township 13 north, of Range 3 east, which he afterward sold to Abraham Bishop. He died many years ago, and was said to be one hundred and ten years old. They were from the State of Virginia. Peter emigrated to Iowa ; Joseph was murdered in cold blood, in 1831 or 1832, by one Barger, who then fled and was never heard of afterward; Michael resides in Union Township, with his family.


One Neese came here with Daniel Etter. He had a small family with him, but soon left, and went no one knows where.


It is believed by those best informed, that Andrew Brown emigrated to this township in the year 1822. He was originally a Virginian, but, like many of the first emigrants, came lastly from Whitewater, near Brookville. He was the owner of the southwest quarter of Section 9, in Township 13 north, of Range 3 east, which is unsurpassed by any other quarter in the township in soil and excellent springs. He was industrious, and soon made a fine farm, on which he continued to live to the day of his death, with every essential comfort. He was a good citizen. Full of jokes, full of fun, and always in good humor, his companionship was very agreeable. He died May 8, 1862, aged seventy-nine years and four months. He had children, but they are in other States. This closes .the emigration to White River Township in 1822. Hereafter the chronological order of the arrival of emigrants will not be attempted because of the increased numbers.


They were born in  Ireland, and came down through New Jersey and Pennsylvania to White River Township in 1822 or 1823. They bought a beautiful quarter-section of land, and located on it and made a farm. William Blean was a married man, with several children. Not many years after their arrival he died, leaving his widow and children in the care and under the control of Uncle Sammy, the bachelor brother. They were as obedient to him as to their own father. No family settling on White River ever shook with the ague more persistently than the Bleans, not in the fall season only, but often the whole year around. Finally the widow could shake no longer, and died. The family then sold out and moved away to Northern Missouri, where some of them yet live. They were strictly honest and truthful, and well respected.


He always spelled his name, Sell, was of German descent and lastly from Western Ohio. He was not related to the other Sells family of the township. Resettled in 1823 in White River Township, on a beautiful tract of land, the northeast quarter of Section 5, in Township 13 north, Range 3 east, where he made a farm. He was industrious and strictly economical, always having a few dollars hid away to meet incidental demands. He was a man of strong feelings, and at times irritable and easily excited, loving his friends and hating his enemies. He could never understand a joke, believing everything told him as real, and was therefore often wrongfully imposed upon. He died on the old homestead, leaving David and Michael and other children to bear his name. Michael, his son, sold out and went to Illinois, where he now resides.
David Sells, by some sort of purchase from his father, succeeded to the ownership of the old homestead, where he resided and reared a family. He and his wife died suddenly in 1865, of erysipelas, as also a boy whom they were raising, David, on the 10th day of January, 1865, and Rachel, his wife, on the 6th. He was a good liver, made money, and, when he died, was the owner of considerable property. He was often charged by his neighbors with relishing the best end of a bargain. The homestead has long since passed to other hands.


He was by birth a Pennsylvanian. He was married to Martha Glenn, of Berkeley County, Va., in 1794, and, in the fall, emigrated to Kentucky, where he resided till 1823. He now purchased a year's provision and forwarded it to Madison, Ind., and himself and family came through in a wagon. He landed at the Bluffs, in Morgan County, on the last day of 1823, and rented a cabin of Bradshaw until he could build one on his own land in White River Township, to which he removed during the winter of 1824. He located on the north half of the northeast quarter of Section 7, and west half of the northwest quarter of Section 8, in Township 13 north, Range 3 east. His location was exceedingly unhealthy for several years. The whole family were sometimes sick and prostrate at one time with fever and ague. On the 29th day of August, 1825, he died, leaving his widow and three sons and two daughters and several grandchildren to fight out the battle of life in the wilderness. The sons were Samuel, John G. and James W. Parks. The mother and her children did not flee the country under these most discouraging circumstances, but went boldly to work to cut out a farm in the green woods, and most nobly accomplished it.
Mrs. Parks was a fine specimen of the pioneer mother. After her husband's death, she taught school in her own house. She was a noble woman, highly esteemed and useful as a female physician. She lived to an old age, and died of consumption on the 22d day of August, 1851, aged seventy-three years and nine months. John G. Parks died of lung fever, February 9, 1843. Samuel Parks lived till five or six years ago ; he was an old man, and resided in Union Township. He left a large family. James W. Parks, one of the three sons, resides in Pleasant Township. The Parks family were all highly respected for uprightness and good citizenship.


He emigrated from Wythe County, Va., to White River Township in the fall of 1823, and bought the farm of Judge Daniel Boaz in Sections 19 and 20, and became a permanent citizen. He was up in years when he first came. He had a large'family and quite a number of boys. Some years after he came, he built a horse- mill which did much grinding for the neighborhood. He, like most of the Virginia emigrants, was of German descent. He was as firm as a rock in his purposes and strictly honest in all his dealings. In the fall of 1851, as nearly as can be ascertained, John Cagley, and sooner or later all his sons and daughters, moved to Northern Iowa.


He originally came from Virginia to Franklin County, Ind., and thence to White River Township, Johnson County, Ind. In the fall of 1819, he drove the first wagon whose wheels ever rolled over the county, in the removal of Jacob Whetzel and family from Brookville to the Bluffs of White River, and, in four years after, he returned to become a permanent citizen of its valley. He was a brother of Michael Brown, who came the year before, and a cousin also of Andrew Brown, already described. He purchased the west half of the northeast quarter and east half of the northwest quarter of Section 20, Township 13 north, Range 3 east, a pleasant, high situation, and worked assiduously in its improvement, and soon realized such returns therefrom as enabled him to live with every comfort about him. He had long been, and at his death was, a leading member and officer of the Christian Church at the Bluffs. He died on the 18th day of September, 1865, aged seventy-four years and six months. He left an aged widow, and two sons with their families, to wit, T. J. Brown and Irvin H. Brown, in possession of the old homestead and its pleasant memories.

Nathaniel Bell was from Ohio. He located at the crossing of the Whetzel and Berry traces in 1823. There he built a horse- mill, which for four or five years served in some sort to furnish an occasional sack of coarse meal to the settlers. It was a strange piece of machinery, and when in motion produced unearthly sounds in its rattlings and creakings and rumblings. The hoop inclosing the runner was a section of a hollow log, sitting loosely over and around the grinder, to prevent the escape of the meal. When the team made a sudden movement, the revolving momentum often communicated to the inclosing hoop, and it, too, was thrown into a sudden circular motion. The strange drummings so frightened the horses that they increased their gait beyond control, and the increased whirl of the grinder overcame its gravity and caused it to take a tangential leap from above, down among the horses and men. His mill was never profitable. He also attempted to keep a sort of hotel, but no man was caught twice by that bait, and in 1829 the traces for through travel were abandoned and useless because other and better highways were constructed. From this date onward this place, once so public, became one of the most lonely and desolate places in the county, being overgrown by briers and brush, and deserted.

Nathaniel Bell, who called himself " the little old man," had six sons, large, active and bold as lions. Nearly all came with him and spread themselves abroad over White River Township. In every enterprise they acted together, and grew bolder and bolder, and became aggressive, attempting, in the spring of 1829, to
elect one of their number a Justice of the Peace. But this attempt was a failure. Against some of them no positive acts of misconduct could be alleged, but soon the people who were at first disposed to look on the better part of them as good men, now changed, and believed each to be a conspirator, and equally guilty. The emigrants were now pouring into the county. The Bells were soon surrounded, suspected, watched, shunned and threatened. One of the worst among them was killed at a house-raising on Grassy Creek, by a log sliding back and crushing his head. They were shrewd men ; they saw it all — that they stood alone — and they soon wisely left, to the relief of the whole township, leaving the " little old man" with his rattle-trap to shift for himself. The old man had failed in his hotel and distillery, and his mill was superseded by other and better mills, so he determined, contrary to the usual custom, to carry his mill to his customers, for it was now in the wild woods. He dragged it down west to Honey Creek and set it up once more on its stilts, and for several years it  resumed its former strains, but it finally went down and '' the little old man " went down also in death and all was silent. The mill stones were removed and brought back by the writer three years ago from Marion County, where they had been converted by a blacksmith into doorsteps. They have been exhibited for several years at the old settlers' meeting in Glenn's Valley, and are still to be seen there. The history of White River Township could never be complete without reference to '' the little old man " and his rattle-trap.


The central part of White River Township drew largely on this family. Peter Tresslar (he and his family always use an initial T in spelling the name), came to the southwest part of the township from Botetourt County, Va., first alone, but soon with his family, and located on the southwest quarter Section 29, Township 13 north, Range 3 east, on the 25th day of August, 1824. The old homestead is still owned by his youngest son, Jacob Tresslar. The labor of making a farm no doubt caused his death. There was no physician near, so he had to rely on Judge Boaz for medical assistance. He left a widow, two daughters and five sons — V. M. Tresslar, Henry, Michael, John and Jacob — who by their industry and experience have contributed greatly to the wealth and prosperity of the township.


He married a daughter of Peter Tresslar, and came with the family to White River Township. He was elected a Justice of the Peace a few years after his settlement here He was an honest man, highly esteemed, affable and kind. His aged widow yet lives.


As he always wrote his name, was a full brother of Peter Tresslar, and came to Johnson County, from Botetourt County, Va., and settled in White River Township in 1829, on the southwest quarter of Section 16, Township 13 north, Range 3 east, and died there March 17, 1857, aged sixty-eight years and four months. He was a plain, honest, sober man. He left a widow and a small family of children. His widow lived up to the year 1879. His children still own the old homestead.


He was from Botetourt County, Va. He settled on the southeast quarter, of Section 16, Township 13 north, Range 3 east. He was the ha.lf brother of William and Peter Tresslar. He was a man of strictly temperate habits, well respected, industrious and economical, and made a good living. He died October 23, 1862, aged fifty-one years and two months. He left a family, a part of whom still reside in the township, and one of whom still owns the old homestead.


Elizabeth Sutton was the widow of Benjamin Sutton, of Preble County, Ohio, and mother of Jonathan and James Sutton. They constituted a family and lived on the northwest quarter of Section 33, Township 14 north, Range 3 east, until Jonathan Sutton died, in the year 1826. They had emigrated only two years before. He left a wife and one child. James Sutton died also, a few years after his brother, on the same farm. Also a son-in-law of Elizabeth Sutton, named Miner, and several of his children, died about the year 1826, on the same land. The widow continued to reside in the neighborhood for many years after their death. She was an excellent woman, and full of religious fervor. She was a skillful and efficient female doctor, and was of great service in nursing the sick.

George Surface and his sons came from Virginia, and arrived at various dates from 1827 to 1832. Their names were John Surface, of Honey Creek ; John, Michael, William and David.

He is distantly related to the other John, was also a Virginian, and came in the fall of 1828. He died on October 18, 1861, leaving only one son and several daughters. John R., the son, was an eminent preacher of the Christian denomination, and died on October 3, 1867.

Was the son-in-law of the last John Surface, came from the same place and at the same time. He died August 1, 1851, leaving several sons and daughters.

PETER DAVIS was a brother-in-law of John Surface. He came from the same place and at the same time. He left many years ago, and died in Iowa.

He was also a brother-in-law of John Surface, and came at the same time and from Virginia.

He and family came from Montgomery County, Va., in the fall of 1829. He died in 1862, leaving four sons and one daughter living.

He came from Alleghany County, Vs., in 1830. He still lives, hale and hearty.

He came from Franklin County, Ind., December 16, 1828. He still lives, hale and hearty.

He came from Wayne County, Ind., perhaps in 1823. He taught the first general school in the township. He only remained four or five years, and left.

He came to White River. Township from Pennsylvania, perhaps in 1823. He sold to James Stewart in 1829, and left the county.

He and his son-in-law, Robert Thomas, came early, perhaps in 1824. He is believed to have been from Ohio. He sold to Coonrod Brunnemer, and his sons George and William, in 1829, and left the county.

He and his sons George and William, together with Abraham Bishop, a son-in-law of Cocnrod, were Virginians. Coonrod died many years ago. William died August 16, 1876, and George Brunnemer and Abraham Bishop are still living.

He was a brother to John Cagley, and died in Virginia. His widow and son, Dr. Cagley (or, as he spelled his name, Kegley) moved to White River Township, perhaps in 1826. He married a daughter of John Doty. He practiced medicine and ran a farm. He is long since dead, and has left a successor in the medical art, Dr. John Kegley.

He was a son-in-law of Lewis Kegley. He came with the family and died July 18, 1865, leaving a large family, who have left the State.

He was the old fife-major. Who among the present citizens of this county have not heard hig loud, shrill fife ? I applied for a land-warrant for him. I asked his name. He answered, " George Michael Pruner." Immediately the application returned saying, " We find no George Michael on the muster-roll." Then I proved by a half-dozen Virginians that he was called George Michael, Michael George and Mike and George, indifferently. The warrant came right a long. He moved to the township in 1823.

He was said to be a relative of Andrew Brown, Sr. He died April 14, 1866, leaving a large family. He was a Virginian, and came in 1823.

The brothers, came to the township about 1824, from Virginia. John died here June 24, 1833. Jacob moved to Iowa in 1853, and died there.

He came from Kentucky to White River Township in the fall of 1831. His son-in-law, Fox, an eminent school-teacher, came along, and ran a school for many years in the township. Mr. Presser died many years ago. Only one son now remains, John M. Presser. He is the equal of the best farmer in White River Township.

He came from Lewis County, Ky., and located in the north part of White River Township in 1829. He died in February, 1864, seventy-seven years of age.

Two sisters (both widows). Mary, widow of William Jennings, and Margaret Thompson, came from Kentucky in 1832 or 1833. Mrs. Jennings was the mother of Robert, William H. and Thompson P. Jennings. She died September 12, 1851, sixty-two years and ten months old. Mrs Thompson died June 11, 1873, aged eighty-eight years two months and four days.

He was an old Virginian, from Wythe County. He came at an early day to White River Township. He had several sons, only one, Jacob, now remaining in the township. The old man died about 1851.

 In the spring of 1828, an old widowed mother and three bachelor sons and one daughter located on the north part of Section 27, Township 14 north, Range 3 east, 240 acres, as farmers. They were skilled in all kinds of labor, took great pains with everything they undertook, and seldom' failed in success. They could manage the house as well as a skilled housekeeper ; could cook, wash, and, in short, could do any kind of housework. They had been halting along on the way for several years, but the children had been born in Pennsylvania, and the old lady in Ireland. But they have all passedaway except John Turner. He alone bears the name of Turner. They were good people.

He came from Kentucky to White River Township in the month of October, 1827, and located on the southwest quarter of Section 28. Township 14 north, Range 3 east. He- had a wife and three children — two boys and one young woman. One of his sons soon died, leaving only two children in the family, Gideon and Miss Julia. The latter was married, first to Mr. Charles McBride, who died five or six years after the marriage, and afterward to Albert G. Prewitt, now of Greenwood, Ind. Prewitt and his wife are intelligent and kind, and long resided in White River Township, and enlivened it by their rich, cheerful conversation and hospitality. Mr. Eddy did not live to enjoy his farm, but was seized with congestive fever in September, 1833, and, after a few days of sickness, died. He was a man possessing unusual vigor of mind, and also extensive information. He was a kind-hearted and good old pioneer.

His family moved to Greenwood from Mercer County, Ky., in 1828, and, after nine or ten years, he moved farther west into White River Township, where he continued to live in perfect uprightness until the day of his death, March 29, 1861, aged seventy years. His wife, Rachel B. Verities died December 25, 1879, aged seventy-eight years.

He was a Tennesseean, and came to White River Township in 1829 or 1830. He, however, had lived on Whitewater after coming from Tennessee. He followed the business of a farmer and was a man of hard labor, soon clearing out a large farm in the green woods. He was several times licensed as an exhorter in the Methodist Church, and was always a leading member of that denomination. He was once chosen a Justice of the Peace. He had two wives. He died July 29, 1871, aged seventy-four years and eleven months
(Title: A historical sketch of Johnson County, Indiana  Author: Banta, D. D. 1833-1896.)

DANIEL M WALKER-- was born in Johnson County Indiana, January 27, 1845.  He was married March 17, 1863, to Eliza J. Davis, who died January 05, 1875.  They had seven children, three of whom are living:  Mary E., now Mrs. John Gash; Jesse B; Henry M. His second wife was Sarah L Voorhies.  They were married February 19, 1879.  They have six children living, one dead:  Minnie B, now Mrs. Bowman; Albert E, deceased; Elmer E; Lillie M, now Mrs. Fred Steeley; Seth A; Roy R; Susan E.  Mr. Walker moved to McDonough County, Illinois in 1854, after living a while in Clinton County Indiana.  He lived there until 1862 when he joined Company A, 84th Illinois Infantry.  He served till the close of the war, seeing much hard service.  He was severely wounded in the Battle of Chickamagua, September 10, 1863, captured by General Forrest and paroled.  After the close of the war, he lived in Illinois till 1879, when he moved to Adair County {Mo}, where he has since resided.  He has been engaged in various occupations.  Mr. Walker was a father before he was twenty, a grandfather when thirty-six and a great-grandfather at age fifty-eight.  He had fourteen children, nine of whom are living; fifteen grandchildren, all living but one; ten great-grandchildren, all of whom are living.  He can trace his ancestry back for many years.  His father's people were English, Scotch and Irish.  He is a socialist in politics, having been a Democrat until recently.  At the election of November 1910, he was a candidate on the Socialist ticket for Judge at large of Adair County.  He is a member of the G.A.R. and the Christian Church.
Contributed by Desiree Burrell Rodcay Source Info: "The History of Adair County Missouri" by E.M. Violette (1911)

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