CAPT. JOSEPH T. JONES
(Extract from "History of Harrison County, Mississippi", written by John H. Lang, published by Dixie Press, 1935, page 157-158)
Captain Joseph T. Jones, Bradford, Pennsylvania, one of the largest oil producers in the United States, was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, June 11, 1842, a son of Albanus A. and Jane (Thomas) Jones, former a native of Philadelphia, of English descent. The father died early in 1843, leaving the widowed mother with two children, a daughter and Joseph T., who was reared in his native city and attended school until after the breaking out of the war of the Rebellion. September 10th, 1861, when he was only nineteen years old, he enlisted, and was assigned to Company H, Ninety-first Pennsylvania Voulnteer (sic) Infantry, in which he served just two weeks over three years. He participated in many battles and skirmishes, thirteen of which were among the most noted battles of the war, prominent among them being Fredricksburg, Antietam and Gettysburg. At the last named battle he had command of the picket guard in front of the summit of Round Top. On July 2nd at the battle of the Wilderness, he received a slight wound; at Cold Harbor he was wounded in both feet, from the effects of which he never thoroughly recovered. At Alexandria, Va., he was promoted to Quartermaster Sergeant, afterwards to second lieutenant and later to captain. At the time of receiving his last wounds he was in command of two companies.
After his discharge he returned to Philadelphia, and soon thereafter went to Oil Creek, Venango County, Pennsylvania, where he began drilling for oil. The first thirteen wells drilled proved worthless, and by this time his funds were gone. Being crippled, as a result of his wounds, and scarcely able to do hard manual labor, he became now very much discouraged. However he continued to try again, and from that time his fortune changed, his wells having proved successful almost without exception. He was by far the most extensive individual producer in the Bradford oil fields, owning nearly 500 producing wells and having territory for at least 200 more. He moved to Bradford in 1877 and was at that time a stockholder in the Atlantic Pipe Line Company. He was one of the incorporators of the Bradford Oil Company, and later became its sole owner.
Capt. Jones was a public spirited man, and a liberal supporter of all measures of benefit to the community. He was a Republican in politics, and in 1888 was appointed one of the Presidential electors from Pennsylvania. He was married in Venango County, Pennsylvania, October 15th, 1876 to Melodia E. Blackmarr, who died March 11th, 1931, daughter of Rev. R. L. Blackmarr, a minister of the M. E. Church, and they had two children: Joseph Albert, who died. December 25th, 1911, and Grace E. now married to VV. T. Stewart.
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