OMER L. RISINGER. For several years one of the most solid enterprises of Hartford City has been the Risinger & Huffman department store at 112 W. Main street on the public square. The proprietors of this establishment have succeeded in furnishing a trade service which gives the people in that community the best selection of goods at moderate prices, and freshness of stock, reliability and fairness in dealing, have been important factors in the success of this concern. The store occupies floor space 30 x 120 feet on two floors, besides basement, and they handle all goods usually found in a general store. The business has been under its present title since February, 1910, and Omer L. Risinger is the active manager of the business, a young merchant whose success has been much in advance of his years. This store was originally started by James Fulton some years before it came under the ownership of the present firm. Mr. Levi Huffman, the second partner in the establishment, is a prosperous farmer of Wells county, and practically the entire management of the business revolves upon Mr. Risinger.

It was in the store conducted by Mr. Fulton that Omer L. Risinger got his first experience in merchandising, and he was a clerk there while still attending the city schools. Omer L. Risinger was born in Wells county, Indiana, November 12, 1889, and was about thirteen years old when he came to Hartford City with his parents. His father is Daniel Risinger, now retired, and his mother is Savilla R. (Jackson) Risinger. Both were born in Ohio, and were of German ancestry. From Ohio they moved to Peru, Indiana, in which city they were married. After the birth of their three first children they moved to Wells county, and the father was a prosperous farmer, owning one hundred and twenty acres of land in that section, until he moved, in August, 1902, to Hartford City. His Wells county farm had been bought by his hard labor and good management from a wilderness condition to a valuable estate, and two years after he located in Hartford City he sold out. The senior Risinger was for a time in the meat market business, but is now retired and lives on North High street. He acquired the principal interest in the Fulton store, with Mr. Huffman as partner, and has turned the management of the business over to his son.

Daniel Risinger is a democrat and he and his wife are active members of the Dunkard church of Hartford City. There were eight children in the family, seven of whom are living, as follows. They include: Mattie, wife of J. L. Mahon, farmers in Blackford county and they have a number of children: Oliver, who is married and lives in Montpelier, Indiana, and has three children; Harry, who lives in Hartford City and has one son; Omer L., Phanuel E. who is unmarried, and at home; Clara, wife of Alison Ruble, of Hartford City. Mr. Omer L. Risinger is unmarried, and is one of the popular young men of Hartford City.

Blackford and Grant Counties, Indiana A Chronicle of their People Past and Present with Family Lineage and Personal Memoirs Compiled Under the Editorial Supervision of Benjamin G. Shinn
Volume I Illustrated
The Lewis Publishing Company Chicago and New York 1914
Submitted by Peggy Karol


AMOS L. NELSON. The fine section of country lying about and tributary to the fine little city of Montpelier, Blackford county, has precedence as one of the admirable agricultural sections of the Hoosier State, and in the placing of its products upon the markets in an expeditious and effective way Mr. Nelson has interposed with marked ability and success, his operations, as a member of the firm of Arnold & Nelson, being of extensive and substantial order, in the buying and shipping of grain, hay and other products. The firm maintains its headquarters in Montpelier and has an unassailable reputation for progressiveness and for fair and honorable dealings,an effective basis for any line of business enterprise.

The firm initiated operation on the 1st of November, 1899, and its operations now include the buying and shipping of grain and hay, the handling of seeds, the conducting of a well equipped feed mill, and the handling of coal at retail. The equipment includes a modern elevator of adequate facilities and the enterprise contributes materially to the commercial prestige of Montpelier. From July, 1891, until the establishment of his present enterprise, Mr. Nelson was associated with his present partner, Henry C. Arnold, in the grain business at Bluffton, the judicial center of Wells county, and since the founding of the Montpelier branch of their extensive enterprise Mr. Nelson has had charge of its affairs, Mr. Arnold still continuing his residence at Bluffton.

Amos L. Nelson was born on the old homestead farm of his father, in Harrison township, Wells county, Indiana, and the date of his nativity was May 27, 1858. He was reared to the sturdy discipline of the farm and received his early education in the public schools of his native county, both experiences having tended admirably to fortify him for a successful business career in connection with his present line of enterprise. He is a son of Jacob B. and Eliza (Schoonover) Nelson. Jacob B. Nelson was born in Ohio, in 1832, and was a boy at the time of the family removal to Wells county, Indiana, in the early pioneer days. He was a son of James and Sarah (Bales) Nelson, who were numbered among the very early settlers of Lancaster township, Wells county, where the father reclaimed a productive farm from the forest wilds, having there established him home in the early 40s. He was one of the sterling pioneers of that county and there continued to reside until his death, which occurred when he was about seventy years of age, his wife having preceded him a few years earlier, and both having been devout members of the Methodist Episcopal church, and he having been a democrat in his political proclivities.

Jacob B. Nelson was the eldest in a family of eight sons and four daughters, all of whom attained to maturity, except one, who died in childhood, and all of the others of whom married, with the exception of two sons. Sanford and William both sacrificed their lives in defense of the Union while serving as soldiers in the Civil War. William died as the result of wounds received in battle and Sanford died in one of the military hospitals, as the result of illness, both being young men and bachelors. Two others of the sons, Solomon and Silas, served during virtually the entire period of the war, took part in many engagements and saw most arduous service, as shown by the fact that each of them was nearly blind at the time of their return home. As before intimated, Jacob B. Nelson was a boy at the time of the family immigration from Ohio to the wilds of Wells county, Indiana, where he was reared to maturity under the conditions and influences of the pioneer days and where his marriage to Eliza Schoonover was contracted when he was as young man. There he initiated his independent career as a farmer but he finally removed to Allen county, where his wife died at the birth of their fourth child, she having been at the time in the flower of gracious womanhood. Jacob B. Nelson was there-after twice married, and of the third marriage one son and one daughter are now living. When well advanced in years Jacob B. Nelson retired from his long and successful association with the agricultural industry, and he passed the closing period of his life in the home of one of his daughters, in the city of Muncie, this State, where he died of an attack of smallpox, about a quarter of a century ago, his age at the time having been about sixty years. He was a democrat in politics and was a man of strong character and utmost rectitude. Of the four children of the first marriage three attained to years of maturity and of these the youngest is the subject of this review. James T. is a prosperous mechanic and farmer in Noble county, Indiana, and his only daughter, Mrs. Eliza Turner, resides in the city of Muncie, her children being two in number. Joseph, the other of the brothers, resides at Kendallville, Noble county, and has two sons and three daughters.

On the old homestead farm which was the place of his birth Amos L. Nelson passed the days of his childhood and early youth, and it is needless to say that he soon gained fellowship with honest toil and endeavor, the while his educational advantages were those of the local schools, as previously stated in this context. Aside from his active association with the great basic industry of agriculture his independent career has been mainly in connection with his present line of enterprise, in which his success has been substantial and unequivocal. He is a loyal and public-spirited citizen, has been influential in the local councils of the Democratic party and he served for several years as a member of the city council of Montpelier.

At Bluffton, Wells county, in the year 1887, Mr. Nelson wedded Miss Mary E. Huffman, who was born in that city on the 7th of November, 1867, and who was there reared and educated, her parents having been pioneers of Wells county. Mr. and Mrs. Nelson have one son, Howard E., who was born on the 8th of April, 1891, who was graduated in the Montpelier high school, as a member of the class of 1909, and who soon afterward went to Houston, Texas, where he is now assistant to the chief clerk of the Houston Street Railway Company,a young man of fine character and marked ability.

Blackford and Grant Counties, Indiana A Chronicle of their People Past and Present with Family Lineage and Personal Memoirs Compiled Under the Editorial Supervision of Benjamin G. Shinn
Volume I Illustrated
The Lewis Publishing Company Chicago and New York 1914
Submitted by Peggy Karol


CONSTANT ANDRE. Not mere temporal affluence but success that has touched and dignified generic industrialism has been the achievement of this well known citizen of Hartford City, the metropolis and judicial center of Blackford county, and through his character and services Mr. Andre has honored the land of his adoption. He was long and prominently identified with the glass works in Hartford City, as a skilled and valued artisan, and here he is now living virtually retired, the labors of the past years having given to him a competency for the gracious twilight of his useful life.

Mr. Andre was born in Belgium, on the 31st of January, 1845, and is a son of Alexander and Virginia (Eden) Andre, both of whom passed their entire lives in Belgium, with whose history the respective family names have been identified for many generations. The father, who was a skilled glassworker by vocation, was seventy-four years of age at the time of his death, and his widow attained to the venerable age of eighty-six years, both having been devout communicants of the Catholic church. They became the parents of two sons and three daughters, the eldest of the number being Alixina, who is the wife of Henry Gingnard, a civil engineer in Belgium, and their children are two sons; Philomena has been twice married and is now the wife of Alexander Bellete, a glassworker in Belgium, they having no children; Eliza is the wife of Jules Vironit, who is likewise a glassworker by trade but who is now living retired at Gas City, Indiana, their children being two sons and seven daughters. Virginia died one year after her marriage to Louis Jose and left one daughter; Constant is the immediate subject of this review; Peter J., is Belgium consul in Uruguay, South America, a position which he has held since 1888, and he is married and has two children; and the other three children are deceased.

Constant Andre was reared to adult age in his native city, and received his early education in the national schools of Belgium, his discipline including a thorough course in chemistry in the Government College, in which he was graduated as a member of the class of 1865. As an expert chemist and glassworker he served thirty years as manager of an extensive factory in the city of his birth, having held this post from 1870 until 1900, in which latter year he came to the United States and established his residence in Hartford City, where he has maintained his home the greater part of the time during the intervening period and where he has been an able and valued workman and executive in connection with the glass manufacturing industry. He brought to America the exceptional skill that has made the glass manufacturing enterprises of Belgium gain such distinctive precedence and he did much to further the success of the same line of industry in Indiana. After coming to Hartford City he was engaged in work principally in the flatening department of local glass manufactories, and as an expert in the making of mirrors and silvering to the same he now finds employment in an independent way, though he has retired from the more arduous and exacting labors that long engrossed his attention. He is the owner of an attractive residence property, and the grounds about his home have an area of one and one-half acres, at 621 South Walnut street, the property having been notably improved and beautified under his personal direction. Mr. Andre takes a lively interest in all that tends to advance the civic and material welfare of his home city and both he and his wife, as well as their children, are earnest communicants of the Catholic church.

In his native city, in the year 1867, was solemnized the marriage of Mr. Andre to Miss Omerine DeBatty, who was there born on the 22nd of May, 1846, and who has proved a devoted companion and helpmate to her husband as well as a loving and self-abnegating mother. Of the nine children eight are living, Aglae, who became the wife of Alexander Martin, having died in 1902, and being survived by two daughters. Cesarine is the wife of Armand Faux, of Hartford City, and they have four children. Valeria is the wife of John Dumont, of Hartford City, and they have one daughter. Homer J., who is a glass-cutter, employed at Fairmont, West Virginia, as boss glass-cutter, is married and has three sons. Carmille, who resides in Hartford City, is married to Pierre Fievet and has two daughters. Gustave E., married Georgette Danday, but has no children. He is a vocal and instrumental music teacher, being a graduate of some of the best musical schools of his native country. Gustave E. Andre is employed as a glass-worker in Hartford City. Lea A., like others of the children, gained her education largely in the public schools of Hartford City, and she remains at the parental home, as one of the popular young ladies of the city. Carlos C., who is a talented and well educated musician, devoted his time principally to the teaching of the "divine art." He married Miss Bessie Rhinehart, of Hartford City, where they maintain their home. Ralph R., who remains at the parental home and is a glass-cutter by vocation is a member of the Hartford City band and he and all of his brothers are affiliated with the Knights of Columbus, Gustave E. being Grand Knight of his lodge.

Blackford and Grant Counties, Indiana A Chronicle of their People Past and Present with Family Lineage and Personal Memoirs Compiled Under the Editorial Supervision of Benjamin G. Shinn
Volume I Illustrated
The Lewis Publishing Company Chicago and New York 1914
Submitted by Peggy Karol


BLEAM HAYDEN. During twenty years of residence in Hartford City, Mr. Hayden has exercised his enterprise and business ability in such a way as to gain the respect of the community and enlarge his own prosperity, has performed those various obligations that fall upon the members of the social community, and has been particularly active in the Christian church at Hartford City, his forefathers having accepted that religion almost at the time of its origin as a separate denomination, and Mr. Hayden has long practiced his faith and worked for the good and upbuilding of the church.

His grandfather, John W. Hayden, was born in Pennsylvania, of Dutch stock. He married a Miss Crawford, and some of their children were born in Pennsylvania. In the early twenties he emigrated to Ohio, and a few years later to Indiana, locating on Silver Creek in Union county. In that locality John W. Hayden built a grist mill near the town of Liberty. He had been reared in the trade of millwright in Pennsylvania, his father before him having followed the same occupation. John W. Hayden operated his grist mill in Union county for a number of years. While there his first wife died, and after his second marriage there occurred a family estrangement as a result of which he and his wife went west and he died there, practically nothing of his history being known to the present family after he left Indiana.

William Hayden, father of Bleam, was born in Pennsylvania, was a boy when the family moved to Ohio, and grew up in Union county, Indiana. As both his father and grandfather followed mechanical trades, he took up and learned that of blacksmith and finally established a smithy in Union county, moving his home and vocation from that locality to Wayne county. His home was not far from Cambridge City, and some years later he moved to Straughn in Henry county. He was regarded as a capable and skillful workman, and conducted a shop which furnished excellent service to a large community until some eight or ten years before his death in 1884. He was then quite an old man. He was a member of the Christian church and a Republican in politics. At Liberty, Indiana, he married Phalenia Howren, who was born, reared, and educated in Union county, coming of North Carolina parentage and ancestry. She died at Straughn, in Henry county, in 1893, at the age of seventy. She was likewise of the Christian church and most of the marriages of the family seem to have connected people of this faith. William Hayden and wife had five sons and seven daughters, ten of whom reached maturity, and all were married except one and all but one had children.

Bleam Hayden, who is one of the younger members of the family, was born in Union county, Indiana, October 15, 1857. His youth was spent principally in Henry county, and the public schools afforded him his education. In Henry county on December 22, 1886, he married Flora B. Martindale, a granddaughter of Elijah and Elizabeth (Boyd) Martindale, natives of Pennsylvania, from which state they moved and became early pioneers of Henry county, Indiana. Her grandfather was a farmer and in Henry county cleared up and improved a good estate and lived there until 1865, finally moving to Newcastle and both he and his wife spent the rest of their days in that community. Elijah Martindale did a great work for the early community of Henry county as a pioneer preacher in the Christian church. He was a close friend of Dr. Alexander Campbell, the founder of the Church of the Disciples, had known him back in Pennsylvania and West Virginia, and a number of occasions preached with him. Elijah Martindale went about the country on horseback, carrying the ministry of the gospel and of christianity to many isolated communities, and was a man of saintly character and did practically all his work without remuneration. His son, Robert Martindale, father of Mrs. Hayden, was born in Henry county, Indiana, in 1833, being one of a large family of fifteen, all of whom reached manhood and womanhood. Robert Martindale married Margaret Turner, who was born in Ireland, and when three years of age was brought to this country by her parents, Robert and Jane Turner. The Turners also settled in Henry county, and Robert obtained and improved one hundred and sixty acres of land and lived there until he died at a good old age. Robert Turner in Ireland had been educated for the priesthood, but after coming to this country accepted, with his wife, the faith of the Christian church, and always lived and practiced according to that religion. The parents of Mrs. Hayden spent most of their lives in Henry county, but died in Hartford City, her father at the age of seventy-two, and her mother at the age of sixty-eight. Her father was one of the elders in the Hartford City church, and in politics a republican. Mrs. Hayden was one of three sons and three daughters, all of whom married and became heads of families.

Twenty years ago Mr. and Mrs. Hayden established a home in Hartford City, and he has been an active worker and has a profitable business as a transfer and dray operator. They are the parents of two children: Maude, who was graduated from the Hartford City high school, is now a widow and has a daughter, Forest F., aged nine years and living with her grandparents; Ralph, who was also educated in the public schools, is now in the insurance business at Hartford City, and married Mabel Lieber. All the family worship in the Christian church at Hartford City, and Mr. Hayden is a deacon and his activity as a layman has been pronounced not only in his home society, but he has attended a number of conventions of the church and is interested in all phases of its work.

Blackford and Grant Counties, Indiana A Chronicle of their People Past and Present with Family Lineage and Personal Memoirs Compiled Under the Editorial Supervision of Benjamin G. Shinn
Volume I Illustrated
The Lewis Publishing Company Chicago and New York 1914
Submitted by Peggy Karol


FRANK M. BEATY. Since its establishment, September 24, 1911, the business enterprise of Frank M. Beaty has supplied a many-sided need at Montpelier and has realized the reasonable expectations of its proprietor, one of the most energetic and progressive men of the town. In addition to a first-class confectionery and candy parlor, Mr. Beaty conducts a wholesale bakery, and the business during the comparatively short period of its existence has grown to extensive proportions. Mr. Beaty was born at Ossian, Wells county, Indiana, August 15, 1875, and is a son of William R. and Oliver Orlina (Woodward) Beaty, natives of Ohio, and born near Warren, that state. They came as children with their parents to Wells county, Indiana, where they were married, and from Ossian William R. Beaty enlisted in Company F, Thirty-fourth Regiment, Indiana Volunteer Infantry, for service in the Civil War. After completing his first service, in 1861, he veteranized and continued to serve until the close of hostilities, making a record for bravery and faithful discharge of duty which placed him high in the esteem and regard of his comrades. On his return to his home he engaged in agricultural pursuits until 1875, when he engaged in the lumber business as a miller, and also bought and sold tracts of timber. His industry and energetic operations gained for him a handsome competence, and ten years ago he retired from business. He is still residing, at Ossian, being active and alert despite his seventy-two years. He has long been active in public affairs and has served repeatedly as councilman of Ossian, being elected to that office as a republican. Mr. Beaty's first wife died in 1882, leaving these children: Clark A., Alberta, Frank M., Harry H., Irene and Hattie Pearl, who died young. Mr. Beaty married for his second wife Laura J. Woodward, and two children have been born to this union: Cletus V. and Gerald D., both of whom are married. All children were well trained for lives of usefulness and honorable living, and all have families.

Frank M. Beaty was reared and educated at North Manchester, Wabash county, Indiana, and later took a commercial course at Valparaiso, Indiana, which he completed with the class of 1896. At that time he became a merchant's clerk at his native place, and so continued for four years, thoroughly learning the principles of business life. He then became the proprietor of a restaurant, known as the Palace, at Warren, Indiana, but after two years returned to Ossian and worked with his father until January, 1903, when he came to Montpelier, and here associated himself with George Braitinger and engaged in the grocery business. A short time later he became sole proprietor, but after a period disposed of his grocery interests and September 24, 1911, opened a bakery on Huntington street. In 1912 he came to Main street, near the post office, and with H. H. Nill opened a candy store, but in November of the same year, bought Mr. Hill's interests, and in January, 1913, built and addition to his store and began the manufacturing of confectionery. In November, 1913, he brought his bakery from Huntington to Main street, and has since operated the entire plant as one business. He has a large business in wholesale bakery goods of the staple kind, and his plant has a capacity of 800 loaves of bread per diem. Mr. Beaty is a hustler, alive to every opportunity for business advancement, and has a high reputation in commercial circles. As a citizen he has shown himself ready to advance any good movement, and he is favorably known in every community in which his goods are in demand, his friends being as many as his acquaintances.

Mr. Beaty was married at Ossian to Miss Mary J. Johnston, who was born at Ossian, Wells county, in March, 1878, and reared and educated there, daughter of Benoni D. and Matilda J. Johnston, natives of Pennsylvania, who were married there. Mr. Johnston was a handler of horses for a number of years at Ossian and was also engaged in the undertaking business. He owned a farm of 320 acres in Iowa. He is now seventy years of age, and Mrs. Johnston sixty-six, and they reside at Montpelier. Mr. and Mrs. Beaty have had these children: Mildred and Benjamin J., who are attending the public schools; Robert, who died at the age of eighteen months; and Katherine. Mr. and Mrs. Beaty are Presbyterians. He is of Scottish Rite Mason and a Pythian Knight, and both he and his wife belong to the Eastern Star. His support is given to the candidates of the progressive party.

Blackford and Grant Counties, Indiana A Chronicle of their People Past and Present with Family Lineage and Personal Memoirs Compiled Under the Editorial Supervision of Benjamin G. Shinn
Volume I Illustrated
The Lewis Publishing Company Chicago and New York 1914
Submitted by Peggy Karol


Deb Murray