GEORGE FREDERICK SLATER. During the past quarter of a century it would not have been possible to estimate the sum total of Jefferson township enterprise without reference to the name of George Fred Slater, a man who has made farming a real business. He is one of the large land owners of the county and has been successful through the same qualities which brings prosperity to residence or factory owner. Beside the possession of a splendid homestead in section twenty-seven of Jefferson township, and land in other localities, Mr. Slater is vice president of the Matthews State Bank, having held that office since the reorganization of the bank three years ago. A further evidence of his standing in the community as a citizen is indicated by his service of five years in the office of township trustee from 1896 to 1901. The Slater farm in Jefferson township is well within the gas and oil belt, and has been the scene of much productive operation. During the past, six gas wells and twenty-one oil holes have been sunk on the Slater farm, and in only a few instances did they prove dry, and some of these wells are still producing.

Mr. Slater's grandfather, James Slater, was born in Guernsey county, Ohio, about 1800. His death occurred in Henry county, Illinois, in 1893 or 1894. His ancestry was about three parts of English to one part of German. All his active years were spent in farming, and he had moved to Illinois about the close of the Civil war. He was twice married and his first wife having died in Ohio before 1840, and his second wife, who became his wife in Ohio died in Illinois. There were children by both wives. By the first union the children were: William; John; and Benjamin, who died unmarried, while John was married and reared a large family of ten children, both he and his wife having passed away in Henry county, Illinois.

William Slater, father of the Grant county farmer and business man, was born in Guernsey county, Ohio, in 1834. When a small child he lost his mother, and then lived on the farm with his father and step-mother in Ohio until he became of age. He received what was in that time a liberal education, and for his practical career learned the trade of carpenter, a vocation which he followed for several years. At the age of twenty-three he married Miss Mary T. Marks, who was of English ancestry, and a native of old Virginia. Her parents having been born in Loudoun county, in that state. Mrs. William Slater was born in 1834 and accompanied her parents to Ohio in 1840, locating in Guernsey county, where her father died when about sixty years of age, and her mother at the age of seventy-six. There were twelve children in the Marks family, ten of whom grew up and most of them married, all being deceased. In 1852, William Slater and wife came to Indiana, where he bought an almost new farm on section twenty-seven of Jefferson township. In the meantime, however, a daughter, Hannah, had been born to them, but she died in infancy and another child, James Mason, died as a boy. On the quarter section of land which he acquired in Jefferson township, he made many improvements. A large barn appeared in 1861, and three years later was followed by the erection of a substantial residence, and these were only the more conspicuous among a number of improvements which made the Slater farm one of the best in that section. William Slater was a very prosperous man and besides the homestead he owned one hundred and twenty acres in one place and two hundred and ten acres including a part of the site of the city of Matthews. The death of William Slater occurred on the old farm in January, 1875. He was a Republican in politics, and he and his wife, who died in December, 1879, were active members in the Methodist Episcopal church. Of their six children, four are living and all are married.

George Frederick Slater was born in Jefferson township August 20, 1864, and was reared to manhood in the locality which has always been his home. Like his father, he had more than ordinary advantages in preparation for life, and besides a public school course, he studied in Danville College, and later, in 1886, was a student in Bryant and Stratton's Business College, Indianapolis. A few years of his early manhood were spent in teaching school, but farming has been his regular vocation for upwards of thirty years.

In 1886 Mr. Slater took over the old homestead, and is now owner of two hundred and eighty acres of land in section twenty-seven, besides one hundred and twenty acres in Delaware county, that place being improved with fine large barns, and a very valuable estate in itself. General farming and stock raising have been the avenues through which Mr. Slater has prospered, and he has always been careful to keep up his grades of stock at high standard, and has profited accordingly. He raises and feeds a large number of hogs, cattle and fine sheep, and grows practically all the grain cereals.

Mr. Slater was married in Blackford county to Miss Joanna Cora Atkinson, who was born in Licking township of that county in 1865, and had a public school education. Her parents, Addison and Harriet (McVicker) Atkinson now live retired in Blackford county, where they were among the earlier settlers, her father being seventy years of age, and her mother one year older. Mr. and Mrs. Slater have the following children: William A., who is a farmer in Washington township in Delaware county, married Etha Linder, and has two children, Martha and George; Frank is a farmer on one of his fathers farms, and by his marriage to Hazel Wills has a daughter, Bertha; Eva M., who lives at home is a graduate of the local high school, as were her two brothers, their school advantages having also been supplemented by business college courses; Mary died at the age of one year; and Margaret, the youngest, is now in the grade schools. Mr. and Mrs. Slater and family worship in the Methodist Episcopal church, in which he is a trustee and steward. In politics he supports the Republican party.

Submitted by:Peggy Karol and Karen Overholt

WILLIAM C. WALKER. A citizen who was known and esteemed for his many substantial virtues and his success as a farmer and carpenter was the late William C. Walker, who was born in Jefferson township of Grant county, October 29, 1844, and who died at his homestead in section thirty-four of the same township on October 7, 1907. Since his death Mrs. Sarah Walker, his widow, has owned and controlled the fine farm of seventy acres one mile north of the little city of Matthews, and has continued to enjoy the esteem which is paid to her both for her own gracious personality and for the part which her late husband played in this community.

William C. Walker was a son of John Walker, whose birth occurred in Rock Bridge county, Virginia, and in young manhood moved to Ohio, where he was a substantial young farmer at the time of his marriage to Marion Case. She was born in Ohio, and of Irish parentage, while the Walkers of Scotch-Irish stock. After some of their children were born in Ohio, John Walker and wife moved to Jefferson township in Grant county. They were here among the early settlers, and the father undertook to clear up his land in the wooded section, but died in 1844, when his son William was but six months old. His widow subsequently married Jesse Ballenger, and they reared a family of children and spent their final years apart, he dying in Grant county and she in Delaware county, when past seventy years of age. Of the children besides William, the following are given brief mention: Samuel, who died at Upland, Indiana, after a career as a farmer, and whose widow and daughter and son live in Upland; Mary, now deceased, whose husband was William Simons, a retired farmer in Fairmont; Katherine, now deceased, was the wife of James Needler, also deceased, and they left three sons and four daughters: Margaret is the widow of Amos Pugh, and lives in Jefferson township on a farm, but has no living children.

The late William C. Walker was only three years old when he went to live with his Aunt Jane, wife of Joseph Reasoner. His home was with that worthy couple until he was about seventeen years old, and in the meantime he was given such advantages in the local school as most boys of his time receive. Soon after the outbreak of the Rebellion, he enlisted in the Eighth Indiana Infantry, and saw three years of hard military service, only excepting a few months in which he was on an invalid's furlough, after drinking some poisoned spring water in Missouri. He was never hit with a bullet or captured, though one ball passed through his hat. On his return from the Civil war he remained on the farm of his uncle until his marriage.

In 1865 Mr. Walker married Mrs. Sarah Forsythe, whose maiden name was Graham. Mrs. Walker was born in Mercer county, Illinois, October 10, 1840. A year or so later her mother died in that state at the birth of twins, and John Graham, her father, in 1843, moved to Indiana, and lived in Grant county until 1846. He then took his children back to Illinois, and a few years later went to Wisconsin, which remained his home until 1860. In the meantime he had married a Mrs. Mary McMichael. In 1860 he once more came to Grant county for the purpose of securing treatment for cancer, and died at New Cumberland in the same year, at the age of seventy-six. He was three times married, and by each wife had children, he having been the father of sixteen. He also raised two orphans, having raised in all eighteen children.

Mrs. Walker first married Elijah Forsythe who died in the prime of life. He had gone to the front as a soldier in Company C of the Eighteenth Wisconsin Regiment of Infantry as a private and served faithfully as a soldier up to and including the battle of Shiloh. In that historic conflict he fought all day long in the rain without any food, and as a result he was taken ill and furloughed home, but died while on the way in a soldier's hospital at Keokuk, Iowa. He was buried at Keokuk, and his remains now rest in the soldier's cemetery at that city. Mr. Forsythe was of a good family, of Scotch stock, belonging to the old seceder faith, and most of the male members were men of wealth or at least more than ordinary circumstance. Elijah Forsythe was born in Muskingum county, Ohio, in 1849. At his death he left one daughter that died in infancy. Mrs. Walker by her marriage to the late Mr. Walker had two daughters: Blanche, who is unmarried, is a young woman of splendid education and lives at home with her mother; Jennie, who is also well educated and was for some time a teacher, is the wife of Alvin Dickerson of Upland, and has two children, Cloyd and Geneva; Cloyd Dickerson is now a student in Purdue University, and his sister is a graduate of the Upland high school, and is now a student of music at Marion. Mrs. Walker has a foster son, Christian Ed. Walker, a noted tenor singer, with an established reputation in musical circles in Chicago. In April, 1913, he married Jennie Dancy. Mrs. Walker and family are members of the Presbyterian faith.

Submitted by:Peggy Karol and Karen Overholt

HENRY WISE comes of a sturdy old Pennsylvania family, of German ancestry, and one that has through many generations furnished stanch and true men to the affairs of the nation. The Wise family was established in Pennsylvania, in Center county, prior to the Revolutionary war, and from then down to the present day men of the name have filled worthy places in their proper niches in life. The names of the parents of Henry Wise are not now known to him, but he does know that they were born, reared and died in Center county, and that his grandsire was a blacksmith of unusual ability and merit, and that in his day he made many of the farm implements used by the sturdy German farmers of his region. Mr. Wise has in his possession a pair of nail nippers, interesting in their appearance, showing as they do their hand made origin, and valuable to him as having been made by his grandfather at his forge. The old stock were of the German Lutheran faith, and stanch religionists in every generation.

Samuel Wise, son of the blacksmith and the father of Henry Wise, whose name heads this review, was born in Center county in about 1812. He grew up in his native community and early learned the trade of a carpenter. When a young man he determined to come west, believing that greater opportunities lay in store for the ambitious young adventurer, and he walked the entire distance to Canton, Ohio, where he secured work at his trade at fifty cents per day. Later he advanced to the prosperous state where he was paid seventy-five cents a day for his labors, and was considered a high priced man at that figure in those early days. After a season he returned to Pennsylvania and there worked at his trade in his native state. He was an expert cabinet maker, and he was occupied in that work and in coffin making, as well as in making furniture. He enjoyed a busy trade in that work, and it is a notable fact that certain articles of furniture that came from his hands are now in the possession of his son.

Mr. Wise married in Center county, Pennsylvania, Miss Katherine, or Kate, as she was familiarly called, the daughter of a Mr. Bickel, a girl who was born and reared in Center county of good old Pennsylvania stock. It was not until after the birth of their three sons, John Jacob, Henry and Samuel, that the family came to Grant county. That event took place in the year 1848, and they came all the long distance with oxteams, and in coming came in contact with only two railroads. They made their first settlement in Jefferson county, there purchasing 160 acres of wild land, whose only sign of civilization was presented in a deserted log cabin. Here they devoted themselves to the business of farming in genuine earnest, and the parents lived to see more than 100 acres of this wilderness well improved and in a fertile and blooming condition. It was, in truth, a fine farm, and there Samuel Wise and his wife lived for many years, later retiring, and both died at the home of their son, Jacob Wise, a sketch of whom will be found elsewhere in this work. The father was then ninety years of age, and his widow died a few years afterward, she too being well advanced in years. They never faltered in their allegiance to the German Lutheran church, despite the fact that there were in those days no other churches of that denomination in their new home. The father was a Democrat and a splendid type of citizen.

Henry Wise is the only surviving one of the four sons born to his parents. Jacob, it should be said, is referred to fully in a sketch devoted to him, so that further mention is not necessary here. John died in Jefferson township, leaving a family, all of whom have since followed him. Samuel, the youngest of the family, was drafted into the army during the Civil war, but before his company reached the front he fell ill and died. He was unmarried.

Henry Wise was born in Center county, Pennsylvania, on March 25, 1835, and he was thirteen years of age when he came with his parents to Grant county. He was reared on his father's farm and had such schooling as the subscription schools of the day provided, in a log school house of the most primitive type. The puncheon floor, the rude bench, and the improvised writing desk made by resting rough boards on pins projecting from the log walls of the building, all were common to his day, and such training as went with the rough equipment was considered ample for the boy of that early period.

When Mr. Wise became of age he worked for his father on the home farm for three years, receiving for his services $100 yearly. After he had taken out $25 for what he called his "Sunday" clothes, he loaned the remainder to his father at five per cent per annum, and when his brother Samuel became of age a year or so later, they joined forces in the purchase of a horse power threshing machine. Together the young men each threshing season would traverse the country there about, threshing for those small farmers and others who did not feel able to maintain a machine of their own. The money they made in this way the young men invested in an eighty acre farm in Jefferson township, which they operated in connection with the home farm for some years. During the Civil war period they purchased and established the first portable saw mill in Grant county. After eighteen months of operation they sold the mill for $1500 more than it had cost them. Later they employed substitutes to take their place in the army, the death of young Samuel before he reached the front having disheartened them for any similar service.

It was about then that Henry Wise began to farm on his own account. His first operations were in Jefferson township, but in 1869 he came to Mill township and here purchased 150 acres, partly improved, to which he later added 73 acres. Still later he purchased an additional 30 acres, and this total of 250 acres is now well drained and improved, and is held to be one of the best farms in the township. A fine house, commodious and complete, as well as a splendid barn, are in evidence, and the conditions existing about the place reflect the energetic and progressive spirit of the man.

Mr. Wise has raised a quantity of fine shorthorn cattle and Poland China hogs on the place, and his success as a breeder has been excellent.

In 1905 his success had reached a place where he felt able to retire from active business, and he purchased a fine house on North A and Sixth streets in Gas City. Here he lives quietly after a strenuous, but prosperous career. Mr. Wise was married in Jefferson township to Miss Margaret Simons, who was born there on April 1, 1861. She is a daughter of William and Mary (Walker) Simons, old settlers of Jefferson township. There Mrs. Simons died when past middle life and Mr. Simons resides in Summitville, Madison county, Indiana. Mrs. Wise is a Presbyterian in her religions faith.

Three children have blessed the lives of Mr. and Mrs. Wise. Lillian, the wife of Walter Vance, occupies the home farm with her husband; they have no issue. Chestie is the wife of Chester Carter, and they now live in Marion, Indiana. They have two daughters, Irene and Dorothy, Gladys married Frank Morrow, and they live at Fort Wayne, Indiana, where he is an overseer in a large factory of that city. They have no children.

Submitted by:Peggy Karol and Karen Overholt

LEANDER N. MILLSPAUGH. Those who pass along the roads of Jefferson township are sure to comment with favor upon the attractive residence and farm of Leander N. Millspaugh, located in section six and on rural route No. 2 out of Gaston. The fences and the cultivation of the fields are an indication to the practical farmer that an energetic and businesslike farmer lives on that place, and the comfortable white dwelling house in the midst of fruit trees and the shade trees, and the large red barn and other buildings, also indicate thrift and prosperity. Prosperity has come to Mr. and Mrs. Millspaugh as a result of hard labor and close management, and while prospering themselves they have not been unmindful of the needs of the unfortunate and have borne a helpful share in community activities.

The Millspaugh family have a number of representatives in Grant and Delaware counties. Grandfather James Millspaugh, according to all information available, was born and spent all his life in New York state and was a farmer. Of his children one daughter was Sallie, who married a Mr. Clark, and their home was near Cincinnati, Ohio. The son Gilbert C. Millspaugh, the father of Leander N., was born in New York state in 1806. The ancestry of the Millspaugh is German. Gilbert Millspaugh was reared on a farm and when a young man settled in Fayette county, Indiana, among the pioneers. In that county he was married to Miss Lucy Williams who was born probably in southern Indiana, about 1812. After their marriage they lived on a farm in Fayette county where their seven sons and one daughter were all born. This family of children are described as follows: Harvey, who was a carpenter by trade and died in Fayette county, leaving a family of children; Oliver H., who after a long career as a carpenter and farmer is now living retired in California, was three times married and had children by his two wives; William, who was a veteran of the Thirty-Sixth Indiana Regiment, and was for a time a prisoner of war, was a farmer until his death in Washington township of Delaware county; Peter, who was a skilled workman and successful carpenter and builder, lived and died in Jefferson township of Grant county, and by two marriages left two sons and some daughters; Catherine married Daniel Richards, a farmer of Delaware county, and there are two sons and a daughter still living of their union; Leander N; Milton J., who has a large family of children by two marriages, now lives on his farm near Marion in North Dakota.

The birth of Leander N. Millspaugh occurred in Fayette county, Indiana, January 8, 1847. There he was reared until 1860, and in that year the family moved to Delaware county. His father died in Delaware county in 1861 at the age of fifty-six, and when the mother was a second time married, Leander, though still but a boy in years, set out to make his own way, and soon afterwards came to Grant county. The second husband of his mother was William Hollis. Mr. Millspaugh's mother died in Grant county when threescore years of age. With a common school education, acquired in the country school, Leander Millspaugh got his practical training for life on a farm, and has made a prosperous business out of tilling the soil. His beautiful farm of eighty acres is in section six of Jefferson township, and he and his wife have lived there since their marriage. It was inherited by Mrs. Millspaugh from her mother. They not only have a good farm but a comfortable nine-room residence and good barns and other facilities for successful farming, and the growing of livestock is one of the chief industries of the Millspaugh place.

Mr. Millspaugh was married in Jefferson township February 16, 1871, to Miss Sarah E. Burgess, who was born in Fayette county, Indiana, March 28, 1850. She was partly reared and educated in her native county, and partly in Grant county, and she finished her education in the Delaware county public schools. Her father, Israel Burgess, was born in Indiana about 1822 and was married in Fayette county to Ruth Crawford, who was born in Fayette county, March 9, 1821. Israel Burgess was a farmer by occupation and died in Fayette county in 1851. His widow was married February 17, 1857, to John D. Kirkwood, of Fayette county. Mr. Kirkwood was born October 29, 1826, and in 1862 established his home in Grant county, locating on a farm of eighty acres in section six of Jefferson township. The Kirkwood farm was later increased by the addition of eighty acres more, and there on what is known as Kirkwood Creek, he and his wife passed the rest of their years. She died December 14, 1902. Mr. Kirkwood died on the old homestead in May, 1905. John Kirkwood was a Democrat in politics, and he and his wife held to no church creed, although they were excellent people, both morally and as citizens, were hard workers, and were charitable in all their relations. John D. Kirkwood and wife had two sons, Frank H. Kirkwood, whose family history is given elsewhere in this publication, and Brooks, who died and left one son.

Mrs. Millspaugh was the younger of two daughters. Her sister, Margaret J., is the widow of William Millspaugh, a brother of Leander, who died in Delaware county in March, 1903, and his widow now occupies the old farm in Washington township. Mrs. William Millspaugh has a family of eight children, four sons and four daughters, all of whom are living and all married but one. As already stated, William Millspaugh was a veteran of the Civil war.

Leander N. Millspaugh and wife had two children: Orla Corwin, who was born in Grant county, January 9, 1874, is a carpenter by trade, his home being in Anderson, Indiana. He married Ola Beck, who died, leaving three children, Willard L., Mildred A., and Gar H. Orla C. Millspaugh married for his second wife, Virginia B. Scott, and their children are Everett and George A. Arthur Floyd Millspaugh, the second child was born November 15, 1882, and is a carpenter by trade, and resides six miles from Rennsalaer, in Jasper county, Indiana. He married Fleet Beck, and they have one daughter, Evelyn R. Mr. Millspaugh votes the Democratic ticket, and is always ready to enlist his services in behalf of any undertaking for the general good of his community.

Submitted by:Peggy Karol and Karen Overholt

Deb Murray