RUPHAS C. NOTTINGHAM. On section thirty-three of Jefferson township, not far from the little city of Matthews, is a fine home and farm, and its proprietor, Mr. Nottingham, has a record which in many ways identifies him with Grant county, and his interest in the history of this locality is due not only to his own long residence, but to the fact that his family has lived here since the days of early settlement.

Ruphas C. Nottingham was born in Jefferson township of Grant county, August 29, 1855, so that he himself has lived here nearly sixty years. His grandfather, James Nottingham, who was of an old English family, and took its name from the Nottingham district in England, was a Virginian by birth and was four times married. His first wife was Elizabeth Russell, who died in Delaware county, after their settlement there at an early day. James Nottingham was a cabinet maker by trade and had a little shop in the pioneer village of Muncie, Indiana, when that town consisted of only a few houses in the woods and in the Hazel brush on the banks of White River. Mr. Nottingham and Miss Russell were married in Muncie. Later he traded his business to Bingham Simons for one hundred and twenty acres of land in Jefferson township, of Grant county. Mr. Simons had obtained that land direct from the government and had placed some improvements. James Nottingham's first wife died in Muncie, leaving the following children: Owen P.; Julia, who married Simon Clark, and left nine children; James Chaplain and Ellen, who died in girlhood. By his second wife, whom he married in Muncie, James Nottingham had one child, Thomas, who died aged about sixty years. James Nottingham then came to Grant county and married his third wife, who died without children. His fourth marriage was with Mrs. Sarah Litler, whose maiden name was Heal. She was a widow with nine children, and by James Nottingham had four other children. James Nottingham and wife spent their last years in retirement in Jonesboro in Grant county, where they died when seventy-two years of age. They were active Methodists.

Owen P. Nottingham, father of Ruphas C., was born in Muncietown, as the city of Muncie was then called, on October 18, 1832. His practical experience in business affairs began when a mere boy. He was given a contract to carry the mail, and on horseback and in all kinds of weather, and over all kinds of roads, he rode throughout this part of the state, and went through hardships that now seem almost incredible. Oftentimes he was on the road and in the saddle all night long in order to get his mail to its proper connections. The very fact of his successful performance of those duties indicate his pluck and energy. He was a very capable horseman, and his skill in the management of the handling of horses enabled him the more easily to carry out his work as a mail carrier. When nineteen years of age he left the mail service, and in 1832 was married in Grant county to Miss Mary Ann Conch, who was born in Darke county, Ohio, February 1, 1830, and came to Indiana when young with her mother and grandfather, Samuel Todd. Her people settled in Jefferson township of Grant county. After his marriage, Owen P. Nottingham started out as a farmer in Jefferson township. Previously, however, he had acquired the trade of harnessmaker, and followed that occupation for some time. In 1863, quiet vocations of civil life were exchanged for military duties, and he enlisted in the Fifty-fourth Indiana Infantry, serving as teamster and wagon master, for fourteen months. After his return to Grant county, he spent the rest of his years in farming pursuits in Jefferson township, and died January 25, 1907. His wife had died some years before on October 10, 1883, at the age of fifty-two years. She was a noble wife and mother, and both of them were influential and very worthy people, acting as counsellors to the community on many occasions, and Owen Nottingham many times was able to secure peace among his neighbors. His politics was Republican. There were ten children, six sons and four daughters in the family, and five of the sons and four of the daughters are still living. All are married, and all have families and homes of their own.

Ruphas C. Nottingham, who was the second in number in this large family of children, was reared and educated in Jefferson township, and has always given his attention to farming. His home is in section thirty-three of Jefferson township, and comprises a fine farm estate of one hundred and seven acres, one of the conspicuous improvements on which is the fine brick house, surrounded with excellent barns and other facilities which indicate the progressive manner in which Mr. Nottingham carries on his farming operations. Directly across the road, only lying in Delaware county, he also owns eighty acres.

On November 11, 1874, Mr. Nottingham married Miss Ida Kirstead. She was born June 1, 1855. near Jackson, Michigan, was reared and educated in Indiana, and died March 14, 1889. She was survived by one daughter, Florence, the wife of Walter W. Slain, and they now live on a farm in Jefferson township, and have two children, Virgil and Ormal. Mr. Nottingham, on September 10, 1891, in Jefferson township, married for his second wife, Mrs. Lasina Newberger, whose maiden name was Richards. Her father is L. G. Richards, a prominent Grant county citizen, whose sketch will be found on other pages of this work. Mrs. Nottingham by the first marriage has one son, Clarence Newberger. Clarence Newberger was married in Philadelphia to Mrs. Anna Mann, and they now live in Richmond, Virginia, and have five children. The following children have been born to Mr. and Mrs. Nottingham: Goldie, born November 26, 1891, and now the wife of Clyde E. Harris, and living in Madison county, Indiana; Ray and May, twins, born March 27, 1895; Ray married Pauline Lambert, and is a farmer in Washington township of Delaware county; May is the wife of Earl Parkerson, of Delaware county; Mary, born September 5, 1898, is at home and attending the public schools. Mr. and Mrs. Nottingahm are members of the Harmony Primitive Baptist church at Matthews.

The politics of Mr. Nottingham is Republican, in which political faith he has acted and believed since he cast his first vote during the Hayes campaign.

Submitted by:Peggy Karol and Karen Overholt

ELISHA OVERMAN. One of the most interesting and best known families in Grant county is the Overman family, several generations of whom have been identified with the growth and progress of this section of the state, and many of whom have done more than the average citizen toward the upbuilding and advancement of their communities.

Elisha Overman, whose name introduces this brief family sketch, comes of Pennsylvania ancestry. His grandfather, one Elijah Overman, came from that state to Ohio in the early days of Clinton county, and there he settled upon and improved a farm. He passed the remainder of his life there, and when he died he was but little beyond middle life. He left four children—Jesse, Benjamin and two daughters whose names do not appear in this record. All grew to years of maturity, all married and all reared families. All are now deceased. After the death of Elijah Overman, his widow married Amos Davis, and they came to Grant county and located in Center township. There they passed the remainder of their lives on the farm they settled upon, Amos Davis being about seventy-one when he passed away, while his widow survived him a few years. All were members of the Friends church. Mr. Davis was a Whig and later was a Republican, and was always an excellent citizen in his community. He and his wife had two children. Henry married and lives on a farm in the vicinity of Sweetser, in Grant county, and is without issue. Melissa became the wife of Reuben Small and lives in Anthony, Kansas. They have four sons.

Benjaman Overman was born in November, 1814, and died in March, 1906. When a young man he came to Grant county and located in Franklin township, but he had lived for some years prior to that with his mother and step-father in Center township. He was twice married. His first wife was a Miss Burson, who died a few years later in Franklin township where he settled soon after his marriage. She left him one daughter, Melissa, who is now married and who lives in North Marion and has two sons. The second wife of Benjamin Overman was Clarissa Marshall. She was born in this county and was here reared, for the most part, and she died in Franklin township while she was yet a young woman, death coming to her in 1857. Thus was Benjamin Overman widowed a second time in his young life. She was mother of three children—Henry, deceased; Elisha, our subject; and Riley, deceased.

A third time did Benjamin Overman marry, and the woman of his choice was a half sister of his second wife. Her name was Rebecca Marshall, and she too was a Grant county girl. She died some few years after the passing of her husband, her death occurring in 1908, when she was about fifty-three years of age. She was the mother of the following children: Elizabeth, who married Albert Brown and lives in Mill township; they have two children, Della and Virgil. Dora, the wife of Abe Gross, lives in Wabash county; they have three children. Mahala, the wife of George Shaw, lives in Mill township, and is the mother of seven children.

Elisha Overman is the son of Benjamin and Clarissa (Marshall) Overman, and he was born in Franklin township, Grant county, on May 28, 1853. After the death of his young mother in 1857 he lived at the home of his Grandfather Davis, and was educated in the common schools of that period. When he reached young manhood he married in Mill township Martha Enterminger, who was born in Mill township in 1856 and died at her home in this township in 1886. She was the mother of three children. Leland died in infancy. David E. was born on November 9, 1884. He now owns and operates his own farm of 124 acres in Section 27, Mill township, the place being a well improved and productive one. He is unmarried and lives at home. William died at the age of twelve years.

Mr. Overman was married a second time in White county, Indiana, to Miss Minnie McGinnis, who was born in Carroll county on December 29, 1869, near Delphi. She is a daughter of Freeman and Hannah (Snethen) McGinnis, natives of Indiana who were engaged in farming in White, Carroll and Cass counties in later years of their lives. Late in life they took up their residence in Gas City, and they died in this place—the father in 1906, when he was sixty-two years of age, and the mother in 1904, at the age of fifty-eight. They were long members of the Christian church, both having been baptized at the same time, but later in life, as a matter of convenience, they united with the Baptist church. They had five children. Willard, a resident of Gas City, is married and has a family; Andrew lives in Gas City, and he also is married and has six children; Mrs. Overman was their third child; Elijah, a resident of Cass county, married and has two daughters; and Mary, who died after her marriage as the result of a gas explosion at the Soldiers' Home on January 21, 1904. Her husband, Charles O. Beitel, was killed at the same time. The explosion caused a falling of the walls of the place, and both were crushed in their beds. They left two children. Orval C. lives in the home of his aunt, Mrs. Overman, and Harry R. lives with Mrs. Rose, in Madison county.

The second marriage of Mr. Overman was blessed with two children: Ethel C., the wife of C. D. Smith, and Roy L., who lives with his sister, Mrs. Smith.

Following Mr. Overman's second marriage, they lived for ten years on a farm in Section 28, Mill township, the years from 1889 to 1899 being spent there. He then purchased a farm of 182 acres in Section 12, Mill township, and this place he has improved to a great extent in the years of his residence there. The place is now one of the finest in the whole county, and is noted for its bountiful crops of corn and other grains, Mr. Overman having demonstrated his capacity as a farmer of the finest merit. In 1899, when he took up his residence on the place, he built a fine barn, that being the crying need of the place, and in 1906 he further improved the farm by adding a splendid residence, in every way suited to the character and general quality of the farm. Here he lived until 1910, when he rented it to his son-in-law, C. D. Smith, and he and his wife retired from farm life and settled in Gas City, where they built a home on the corner of Fifth and B streets.

Mrs. Overman is a member of the Bible Students Association and is a woman of many excellent qualities of mind and heart. While Mr. Overman holds to no settled religious conviction as outlined by church doctrine and membership, he is a man of sterling character and one whose influence in his community has always been an excellent one. He is a Democrat, and at a recent election was elected Councilman-at-large for his community. His accomplishments have been most worthy, and after a busy career, in which he gained a considerable prosperity, he feels himself entitled to a few years of quiet life, in pursuit of those enterprises that appeal to his maturer wisdom and judgment.

Submitted by:Peggy Karol and Karen Overholt

MONTE SYLVESTER DUNN. Here is a name that has been identified with Grant county settlement and history for three-quarters of a century. It has become honored and respected, through long years of successive industry, business integrity, and Christian and moral character. Few Grant county families have been longer established, and none have borne their part in community affairs with greater credit to themselves and with more practical usefulness to the community than the Dunns. Until death laid its restraining finger upon him, the late Monte S. Dunn was one of the ablest farmers and most public-spirited citizens of Jefferson township. His widow, who belongs to the old pioneer Littler family, has taken up the burdens laid down by her husband, and has quietly and effectively performed all the offices required of the head of a family. Mrs. Dunn is a woman of fine culture, of the essential qualities of heart and mind which are associated with the old-fashioned type of womanhood, and possesses a keen intelligence and interest much beyond the usual range of people who spend their lives quietly in one community.

This history of the Dunn family begins with John Dunn, grandfather of the late Monte S. Dunn. John Dunn was born either inPennsylvania or Virginia, in 1790, and after seventy-five years of life passed away at the home of his son, Thomas, at New Cumberland in Grant county, on June 3, 1865. He was of Scotch-Irish ancestry. His occupation was that of farming, and so far as information is obtainable it is believed that he married in Virginia, Miss Cassandra Knight. She was a Virginia girl, born in 1795, and died in 1862. For several years after their marriage they lived in Virginia, then moved to Ohio, and some years later, during the early thirties, established a home in what is now Washington township of Delaware county, where John Dunn entered one hundred and sixty acres of wild land. He and his wife lived and labored there until old age, and were pioneers who succeeded in clearing off a considerable part of the wilderness and establishing comfortable homes. They were devout members of the Primitive Baptist faith, and were active in the history of that church in the early days, both in Delaware and in Grant county. John Dunn and wife had a large family of children, and these are briefly mentioned under the following numerical heads: 1. Thomas, who was born in 1812 in Virginia or Ohio, in young manhood entered government land, in Washington township of Delaware county, where he lived many years, and later established a mill at New Cumberland in Grant county. His declining years were spent in Grant county and he died at the old home in New Cumberland, October 17, 1881, when past sixty-nine years of age. His wife, whose maiden name was Sarah Reasoner, of one of the old families of Grant county, died on the same place, July 19, 1891, being seventy-six years and four months of age. The children of Thomas and wife were: Mrs. Anna Lewis, deceased; John, who was a soldier in the Union army, and now lives in Mississippi; Mary, wife of Esley Stephenson, of Matthews; Benjamin R., who was killed at the battle of Chickamanga during the Civil war at the age of twenty-one; and Gehiel, who died unmarried at the age of twenty-one; Sarah J., wife of Richardson Watson, lives in Santa Paula, California; Carolina, wife of James Littler, both of whom died without issue: Mrs. Sarnantha, wife of Monroe Darton, of Delaware county, and the parents of one son; Thomas J., who was a miller by occupation and died leaving one son. 2. James Dunn, father of the late Monte S., was born probably in Virginia in 1814, and died in 1863. He married Cassandra Evans, who was born in 1824, and died in 1903. Further details concerning these parents are given in a following paragraph. 3. William, who was born either in Virginia or Ohio, was married on the line between Blackford and Grant county to Sebra Reasoner, followed farming in Delaware county, until his death, and had seven children. 4. Harmon, who like the others adopted farming as his vocation, was also skilled in mechanical pursuits, and in early life followed wagonmaking. He spent practically all his life in Delaware county, where he had acquired land direct from the government, and at his death left a family of children. 5. Sarah, married Benjamin Lewis, a Delaware county farmer, and lived and died on the old place without children. 6. Mary, became the wife of Benjamin Reasoner, a well known farmer of Grant county, and they left several children. 7. John. the youngest of the family, was a successful Delaware county farmer, where he died leaving five children.

James Dunn, who was born October 12, 1814, and who died at his home on section four of Jefferson township in Grant county in 1863, was quite young when he first came to Grant county, and was a participant in the early development and history of his township, where he started his career as a farmer. After his marriage in 1847, he entered land and established his home at what is known now as the Dunn Homestead, and having been originally entered by his father, John Dunn, about 1838. Mr. Dunn was a man of vigorous personality and in the course of his lifetime, although he died when in the prime of his years, made many improvements to his farm, and made his influence felt for good in the entire community. His place was improved in various ways, good barns were erected and a fine old frame house was the home in which he passed his last years. In 1847, James Dunn married Cassandra Evans, who was born in Allegany county, Pennsylvania, June 15, 1824, and died at the homestead, February 16, 1903. Her father was Thomas Evans. She joined the Presbyterian church on January 30, 1871, and died in that faith. She was a noble, whole-hearted woman, ever ready to assist in the troubles of her neighbors, and by her benevolent activities and her kindly personal character was beloved throughout the entire country side. The children of James Dunn and wife were as follows: Randolph, who died in young manhood; Almira Jane, who died also when young; Oliver Perry, who lives on and operates a large farm in Delaware county, is married, but has no children living; Monte S., who is next in order of the children; and Sarah P., a twin sister of Monte and the wife of A. T. Wright, of Marion, and the mother of three daughters and one son.

The late Monte Sylvester Dunn was born on the farm he occupied all his life in Jefferson township, on March 10, 1857, and died at the Dunn Homestead, as it is familiarly known throughout Jefferson township, April 23, 1913. Reared on the old place he had an education like that supplied most farmer boys in his generation, and after growing up came into the possession of the farm of one hundred and fifty-six acres, where he and his brothers and sisters had grown up. His was a very active life. He was a man of excellent judgment, and his industry and good management resulted in the addition of many improvements, besides those introduced by his father. He left a beautiful and valuable home for his widow and children. The old dwelling is a comfortable ten-room house, mostly of frame construction, and beyond the house yard are a group of outbuildings, comprising red barns and other structures, required for up-to-date farming. As a farmer and stock raiser, the late Monte S. Dunn was probably as successful and as progressive as any man in his township. His widow and her sons are still keeping up the standards set by the late Mr. Dunn, and have been no less successful in making the homestead pay regular annual dividends.

On April 26, 1888, in Hartford City, Indiana, Monte Sylvester Dunn and Miss Mary E. Littler were united in the holy bonds of matrimony by Rev. McKean, then an old and beloved Presbyterian minister. She was born in Jefferson township, of Grant county, September 13, 1858, was liberally educated in the public schools, and was well prepared both by native character and by her early influences for the career of motherhood and social beneficence, which has been hers. Her parents were Nathan and Katherine (Whistler) Littler. Her father was born in Virginia, and her mother in Cumberland county, Pennsylvania. They met and married in Ohio, and their companionship as man and wife was begun on the banks of the Mississinewa river in Jefferson township of Grant county. Their first home was built of logs, and in spite of the crudities and hardships of such existence, they had the courage and true wisdom of patience which made those years not unhappy. Later they established a better home, and lived quiet and useful lives. Mr. Littler died there during the Civil war in 1863, being then in the prime of life, and his widow followed him in 1870. They were active Methodists in religion, and Nathan Littler took much part in church work, being possessed of a naturally beautiful voice, which he cultivated, and which he used in church and social affairs. He was also a great reader of religious and secular literature. Mrs. Dunn has one brother living, Joseph W. Littler, who now owns and runs the old Littler homestead in Jefferson township. Joseph Littler married Elizabeth Dunn, a daughter of Harmon Dunn, and they have four daughters. The two sons of Mrs. Dunn are: Phillip, born May 18, 1890, was graduated from the Matthews high school as one of a class of ten in 1909, and after taking a course in animal husbandry at Purdue University, has applied his practical experience and scientific training to the management of the home farm, being a very successful young agriculturist. James Homer Dunn, who was born July 13, 1896, is a member of the class of 1915 in the Matthews high school. Mrs. Dunn and her two sons are members of the Epworth Methodist church at Matthews.

Submitted by:Peggy Karol and Karen Overholt

DAVID LEMON RICHARDS. Probably the most attractive and valuable country estate in Jefferson township is that of David L. Richards in section six. Prosperity, comfort, enterprise and good management are in evidence at every turn, and if one should wish to form a fair judgment as to the highest possibilities of Grant county agriculture, he could select no better place for his studies than the Richards farm. The farm comprises one hundred and sixty acres of land and has been known as the Richards place for two generations. The farm was located and owned for a number of years by Mr. L. G. Richards, father of David L. Richards. Mr. Richards likewise owns one hundred and fifty acres of land in Jefferson township of Delaware county. That place has fifteen acres of timber, but all the rest is in cultivation, and has an excellent building equipment consisting of a comfortable white house and a large red barn. The home farm has a residence probably not excelled for size and comfort in this part of Indiana. It contains fifteen rooms, the entire structure is modern in architecture and furnishings, and it is heated by a furnace, has hot and cold water on all floors, and an acetylene gas plant in the basement which furnishes modern lighting facilities. Outside of the house, which is surrounded by a grove of fruit and shade trees, there are two large red barns, one of them for stock purposes and the other a seed and grain barn. Mr. Richards has specialized both in livestock and in fruits. His home has been there since 1900 and though not all the improvements are to be credited to his management, he has introduced many changes both in the cultivation and in the facilities, and realizing his responsibilities as the son of one of the best known old settlers of Grant county, he has maintained the family traditions and has developed a farm which is creditable alike to his own enterprise and to the county in which it is situated. He is successful in the growing of both small and large grains, and he keeps a large number of hogs, sheep and cattle, and also twelve good horses.

Mr. L. G. Richards, father of this substantial farmer citizen, has a long and interesting career of his own, and it is told in appropriate manner on other pages. On the old homestead in section six of Jefferson township, and in a house which is still kept standing as a land mark and for its family associations, David L. Richards was born April 16, 1810, and was reared and educated in this vicinity and has been known to the people from their youth up. He was one of a family of four children, and the others are: Rev. J. W. Richards, a farmer in Delaware county, and who was married and has a family; Mrs. Ruphas C. Nottingham; and Mrs. J. W. Himelick.

David L. Richards was married in Jefferson township to Miss Lois Alta Fergus, a daughter of Warren Fergus. Mrs. Richards was born on the old Fergus farm in Jefferson township, April 10, 1869, and was educated in the public schools of this vicinity. To their marriage have been born two children, as follows: Della, born May 15, 1892, a graduate of the Matthews high school in the class of 1910, and by her marriage to William Lewis, who now operates the Richards farm in Delaware county, has one son, Richard R., born March 31, 1913. Ada Gulia, the second child was born May 19, 1896, and is a senior in the Matthews high school. Among his other interests and enterprises, Mr. Richards was one of the organizers of the Matthews State Bank, and is a stockholder and director in that substantial institution. He has always interested himself in matters of community welfare, is a public-spirited citizen and a supporter of moral and educational movements.

Submitted by:Peggy Karol and Karen Overholt

Deb Murray