THAD BUTLER. A vigorous and enterprising Marion business man, whose home has been in Grant county for the past thirty-five years, Thad Butler in the earlier years was prominent in connection with a number of the industrial organizations and promotions which characterized the great boom period of Marion's history. For the past fifteen years his energies have been chiefly directed to the manufacture and sale of musical instruments and music supplies. He has a splendid business in Marion, and also a large store in Kokomo, and his enterprise has been an important factor in Marion commercial history for many years.

Thad Butler was born in Wabash county, Indiana, in 1858, and came to Marion in 1878 to enter the employ of the Spiker & Harrison Carriage Company. Two years were spent with that concern, when Mr. Harrison moved to Logansport, and Thad Butler, though only twenty-two years old, took the factory, and went into business for himself. During the ten years he manufactured and sold carriages, he became personally acquainted with nearly every farmer in Grant county. Then came the boom period in Marion history, and Mr. Butler turned his attention to real estate. In association with W. H. Wiley, he did much to locate the west side industry—the Malleable factory and the rolling mills, and all were excellent establishments until fires and trusts consumed some of them, but the Malleable factory is still a monument to his efforts.

While Mr. Butler has always been an active community business man, it is in connection with the Butler Music Company that he now cares to be remembered. His present business was established August 7, 1897, and has proved both profitable and pleasant. Mr. Butler was a member of the Chute & Butler Company, which manufactured organs at LaFontaine, later moving the factory to Peru, where the Chute & Butler pianos were manufactured. The Butler Stool & Bench factory in Marion is also his enterprise. For several years Mr. Butler operated a Butler music store in Wabash, until he sold it to his brother Tom. He is now owner of the Butler store in Kokomo which is carried on independently of the Marion establishment. In 1913 the Butler Music Company in Marion placed four hundred and twenty-seven pianos, besides all the sheet music and other instruments handled by the concern. The Butler store is well equipped, and a competent force is always at hand to look after the business interests of the company. While Mr. Butler is numbered among the original boosters of Marion developments, his efforts in subsequent years have not relaxed in that direction, and the Butler Music Company is not only a prosperous establishment, but is contributing to the larger development of Marion as one of the chief commercial centers in northern Indiana.

While the Butler family is not native to Grant county, it has a fine ancestral history. Mr. Butler is the oldest of three children born to John and Harriet (Wigmore) Butler. Harriet Wigmore Butler died in Marion, October 16, 1913. John Butler, ninety years of age, is still living, and is fortunate in retaining his mental faculties to a remarkable degree. The other two children are: Tom Butler, of Wabash; and Miss Winnie Butler, of Marion, connected with the Butler Music Company as bookkeeper. In her effort to establish the line of family descent, in order to become a Daughter of the American Revolution, Miss Winnie Butler made an exhaustive study of both the Butler and Wigmore family history, and as a compliment to her brothers she presented them with copies of the family descent in artistic bindings, souvenirs which they all prize most highly.

There have been a number of Colonial and Revolutionary soldiers in the ancestry, and Miss Butler exchanged many letters with government, state and county officials while obtaining historical data of the family. Her father was born in Maine, and her mother in England. In establishing this family claim, Miss Butler discovered that the older ancestors never talked and the younger ones never asked questions, and yet she has accumulated a most interesting history. She found that both time and money had been spent by some members of the early ancestry in establishing facts, and in this family book Miss Butler wrote: "The work has been exceedingly fascinating, and I hope sometime to continue the search." In 1910 Miss Butler visited in Maine, carrying a camera, and she made many pictures of the Butler family homestead environment, among them the house in which John Butler was born. The Butler family tree is a result of Miss Butler's effort, and as she has made copies for each of her brothers, they have a priceless heritage.

Speaking of the Butler family in Maine, Miss Butler writes: "The history of our father's family in this country covers about three hundred years, and brings to mind very forcibly the strenuous military life of the Colonial and Revolutionary patriots. In our list of ancestors are the names of eighteen men from whom we are descended in direct line, of these, twelve have military records. Our early ancestors were mostly English born and they all settled in the New England states. They must have been Puritans as they held office in a number of instances, and none but Puritans were allowed to vote much less hold office. The Butler family lived in Kennebunk, York county, Maine when father was a boy, and they had lived in that locality for several generations. Our two great-grandfathers, John Butler, Sr., and John Butler, Jr., served in the Colonial and Revolutionary wars. Our grandfather enlisted in the war of 1812 as John Butler III. His business was that of shipbuilder.

"Father left home at sixteen, going with a government crew to Louisiana to select live-oak trees for ship building. He returned to Boston by boat and wrote to his sisters. His father answered the letter, urging him to come home, but he never received the letter. The boat sailed out again and was lost at sea. As the family received no more letters, they finally believed that he must have gone down with the boat that was wrecked. However, his father remembered him in his will, leaving a field which was a part of the Butler farm. This has changed hands several times since and is now owned by a brother of the cousin who first wrote me. He said he thought his brother would give it up if we asked for it." Miss Butler further traces the career of her father to Pottsville, Pennsylvania, where he met Miss Harriet Wigmore in cherry-picking time, and on July 4, 1853, they were married and went to housekeeping. Later came their removal to Indiana, with seven years of residence at Laketon, and nineteen years in Wabash. The residence of the family in Marion followed soon after the older son located here in the late seventies.

Mr. Thad Butler was married December 1, 1881, to Miss Winnie Fleming, daughter of Riley and Catherine (Harry) Fleming. They are the parents of the following children: Harry who died in 1891; Bernice, wife of Earl Newhouse; and J. Edwin Butler, whose wife was Miss Clarice Hawkins. Mrs. Butler's mother, now the wife of William Hemphill of Washington, Kansas, is living, and since Mrs. Butler does not remember her own father, Mr. Hemphill seems like a father to her. Mrs. Butler is descended from a pioneer family on her mother's side, although her birthplace was at Mount Aetna, in Huntington county. Her grandfather, Jeremiah Harry, published the Marion Democrat-Herald, in 1842, the first newspaper published in Grant county, and he was identified with much of the development of the community. He had one son Edwin C. Harry of Wheeling, West Virginia; and three daughters: Mrs. Catherine Fleming-Hemphill, mother of Mrs. Butler, and of George Fleming, who lives in St. Joseph,Missouri; Mrs. Cornelia Sanders and Miss Mary Harry. Only Mr. Harry and Mrs. Hemphill survive. Mrs. Butler with her children are the last representatives of this pioneer family in the community where they were so well known and connected with community affairs. There are three houses and Mrs. Butler and her son and daughter all live on the original Harry family homestead property. The Butler family stands high in the community life of Marion, and its accomplishment has served to enrich the business and social life of the city.

Submitted by:Peggy Karol and Karen Overholt

ZENA M. NYE. Grant county has reason to be proud of its farms and its farmers. The bone and sinew of the country are in the men and women who produce the crops, who help "feed the people" of the nation. And there is a higher average of material prosperity in the country than can be found in the city for all its superior facilities of urban life. What a progressive Grant county farmer can do and what he has to enjoy are well illustrated in Washington township at the place of Zena M. Nye, whose home is on section 11. He has a total of three hundred and twenty-eight acres as the basis of his agricultural industry, 179.75 acres in Washington township and the rest in Van Buren. On the farm in Washington township in 1912 he raised fifteen hundred bushels of corn, and ten hundred and eighty-six bushels of oats; sent one hundred and fifty hogs to market and eleven head of cattle. At the present writing he has sixty-five hogs and fourteen cattle, the former being of the Duroc-Jersey breed, and the latter shorthorn and Polled Angus. He keeps on his farm ten horses of the Belgian and Percheron breed. For home comforts is a fine nine-room house erected by Elijah Creviston, father of Mrs. Nye, in 1874. The improvements are all modern, and the home stands in the midst of a grassy and well-kept lawn. Near the house stands a large white bank barn, also erected by Elijah Creviston. Mr. Nye had the following acreage for 1913 crops: forty-five acres of corn, sixteen acres of oats, and twenty-two acres of wheat. For the convenience of his family, Mr. Nye keeps an automobile, and lacks few, if any, of the comforts and conveniences which are deemed essential to modern living.

Zena M. Nye was born in the state of Michigan, January 25, 1865, a son of Benjamin and Elizabeth (Brown) Nye, both of whom were natives of Ohio. Benjamin Nye was born in 1814 and died in 1855, and his parents were Peter and Mary Nye, both from Virginia as their birthplace. The grandparents were pioneer settlers in Ohio. In that state, Benjamin grew up and married, and in 1835 transferred his home to Michigan, where he entered government land in Berrien county, spent a number of toilful years in clearing off the timber, cut and hewed the logs for his first cabin home, and spent the remainder of his honorable career in that state. He had one hundred and sixty acres at the start, and later gave his brother John fifty, and made the remainder his homestead. Benjamin Nye and wife reared four children out of five born, namely: Milton, deceased; Henry, a resident of Michigan; Elizabeth, deceased; James H. of Benton Harbor, Michigan; and Zena M.

Zeus M. Nye attained his schooling in his native county of Michigan, and remained with his father until the latter's death, after which he continued on the home farm, and managed it in his mother's interest until her death in 1892. He then bought off the other heirs and thus came into possession of the Michigan homestead. In the fall of 1900 Mr. Nye moved from Michigan to Grant county, Indiana, and in 1910 sold his Michigan property. The Grant county home farm is an inheritance to Mrs. Nye from her father. In 1910 Mr. Nye bought that portion of his estate which lies in Van Buren township, and on which his son resides.

Mr. Nye on June 13, 1888, married Miss Ella Creviston, a daughter of Elijah and Lydia (Whinney) Creviston. Elijah Creviston was born February 8, 1844, and died June 4, 1907. His father, Daniel Creviston, was one of the pioneers of Grant county, and the Creviston family have a prominent place in Grant county history. Elijah Creviston at the beginning of his career, received forty acres of land from his father and used that as the nucleus around which he built up the large estate of which he was possessed before his death. He was regarded as one of the most successful farmers in Grant county, and in every other way was a good citizen. The three children of Elijah Creviston and wife were Ella C., Otto M., and Harry L. The mother of this family died June 24, 1874. The three sons of Mr. and Mrs. Nye are Roscoe C., a farmer in Van Buren township; Arthur H., a farmer in Monroe township, and John Vernon, at home. In politics Mr. Nye is affiliated with the new Progressive party, and he and his family worship in the United Brethren church. Fraternally he belongs to the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks at Marion.

Submitted by:Peggy Karol and Karen Overholt

JAMES LAFAYETTE BARLEY. Death who is always sitting closely by the highways of human existence and removing one by one those upon whom its grim lot falls, selected a particularly conspicuous victim in the late James L. Barley, who died at Denver, Colorado, October 22, 1913. Mr. Barley had long been one of the most prominent and wealthy citizens of Grant county, and there were few men in the community more closely in touch with its affairs. While many of his interests were in Marion, his possessions and commercial relations extended out into Grant county, and to different points in the state and in other states. Mr. Barley had spent two months in a vain endeavor to restore his health in Colorado climate. Both before and after his death it was recognized that the city had in him a splendid man, one who did much to build up Marion, and give the city its high standing in the business world. While foremost in business enterprise, he was also a true friend, a kind neighbor, and a man liked by all who knew him.

James Lafayette Barley was born in Lugar Creek in Center township of Grant county, April 5, 1851, and was thus in his sixty-third year at the time of his death. On October 2, 1872, he married Miss Louisa J. Gordon of Virginia, who was visiting relatives in Indiana, at the home of her uncle David Bish. The young couple began housekeeping in Jalapa, and after six years moved to Pleasant Valley. The old millsite and adjacent lands at Pleasant Valley were a part of the estate of Mr. Barley until his death. In 1880 the family came to town, and in 1904, moved into the Barley home on South Adams street, one of the finest residences in Marion, and a center of much social life.

While Mr. Barley was one of eleven children born to Henry and Mary (Snyder) Barley, his father was one of fourteen children born to the German emigrant, Nicholas Barley, who in 1784 first established the house of Barley in America. J. L. Barley was in the third generation of Barleys in this country, and the second generation in Grant county. His brother Jacob S. Barley, and two sisters, Mrs. Aletha Blackman, and Mrs. Christiana Shira, are all that remain of his father's family.

While his ancestry had large families, Mr. and Mrs. Barley had only four children: Charles G. Barley, who married Miss May Harwood; Albert C. Barley, who married Miss Mayme Brodrick; Miss Edith Barley, who married J. W. Stephenson; and Fred L. Barley, who married Miss Eva Shell. There are also some grandchildren. In the family of A. C. Barley are two, Albert C. Barley, Jr, and Anna Louise Barley. In the Stephenson family are four grandchildren, Helen, Dorothy, Mary Louise, and Mildred Verne Stephenson. The children and grandchildren all live near the Barley residence on South Adams street.

The late Mr. Barley spent his entire life in the vicinity of Marion, only for temporary absences, and as the community advanced he advanced with it. He was always fortunate in his investments, but his good fortune was due to his persistent energy, and his exceptional judgment in all business matters. While his interests were concentrated in town for a number of years, for forty years he never missed a season operating a threshing machine, starting out July 4, 1872, and finishing the season of 1912, part of the time as chief owner, and part of the time with a partnership arrangement with others. Elihu J. Oren of Glen-Oren in Monroe township, had been operating a threshing machine several years when Mr. Barley began, and at the latter's death the two were the oldest machine men in the county.

In 1886 Mr. Barley entered into partnership with R. J. Spencer in the Barley & Spencer Lumber Company, and few partnership arrangements had a longer or more profitable duration in the county. Sawmilling is an old business in the Barley family. The mill property—Barley's Mill, because Mr. Barley always owned land about it—was built in 1846, and in 1912, it was razed, the material being utilized again in a cattle barn on the farm in Franklin township. Samuel Campbell, who is now a nonagenarian, and his brother ‘‘Sash" Campbell were the millwrights when that old land mark which stood there sixty-six years ago was built, and thus an early flouring mill went out of local history. Mr. Barley owned the bottom land along the Mississinewa at that point, and men employed in the Pleasant Valley garden occupied the houses there. Mr. Barley was extremely fortunate in his southern investment, the timber country at Bay Minette, Alabama. Time was when the old Barley Mills in Grant county were designated as the "Coffee-Pot," but the firm of Barley & Spencer became recognized as one of the strongest engaged in the timber business anywhere in the country.

When Mr. Barley first engaged in the lumber business at Japala he went into the woods with an ax and saw, and for twelve years drove a team, and he knew conditions when timber was on the market for miles around. In later years Mr. Barley left his home for business in a seven-passenger Lexington car with a chauffeur—quite a contrast to his days on the log wagon, but he was the man to come to the rescue if a driver had trouble with his load or a mishap of any kind befell him. He never forgot how to rig up "block and tackle" in an emergency, and if his automobile needed attention, the chauffeur was not the only man who understood its mechanism.

Mr. Barley was always a busy man, and identified with many large organizations. He was one of the promoters and organizers and a large stockholder in the Marion Ice and Cold Storage Company, was identified in a similar capacity with the George W. Steele and Company, flour manufacturers, and had an interest in the manufacturing company of Haas, Spencer & Barley at Vincennes. Mr. Barley was one of the directors in the Boston Big Store Corporation, and within the year preceding his death became owner of the Glass Block, one of the finest business and office buildings, of Eastern Indiana. The Franklin township farm remained as an investment and source of food supply to the family, furnishing vegetables and other articles fresh from the garden. When the Marion Commercial Club went out of active service, so many of the stockholders having been called from earth, Mr. Barley was chosen president, and through that organization and in other ways he interested himself personally in the community development. When the Rutenber Motor Works were located in Marion, the Barley family had just disposed of its large southern timber interests, and therefore invested heavily in the factory stock. A. C. Barley who was then president of the Marion Chamber of Commerce had been instrumental in securing the motor plant for this City. The late Mr. Barley always was actively connected with the Barley organized family affairs, although most of the meetings are held elsewhere, brothers, sisters, cousins, nephews, nieces, aunts, uncles, to the number of one hundred and seventy-five persons coming together annually, and at one time or another he served the family organization as president. Mr. Barley was a stalwart Democrat, though never in politics for office. While Dr. Stoner, a Marion druggist, was the first man in town to own an automobile, the Barley family came in second, and in later years there were from one to half a dozen cars in use by the family all the time. When Mr. Barley went to San Antonio, Texas, for the winter of 1911, he shipped his car there and left it for the 1912 season. When W. J. Bryan visited Marion in the 1908 campaign, the Barley car was at his disposal, Mr. Barley driving it himself, and when President W. H. Taff was here in 1911, Mr. Barley carried the secret service men accompanying the party. For more than forty years Mr. Barley had as his companion and counselor, a wife who performed well her many duties as manager of the household and as a unit in social affairs. Mrs. Barley is of domestic nature, and like the woman in Proverbs "She looketh well to the things of her household, and eateth not the bread of idleness."

Submitted by:Peggy Karol and Karen Overholt

VERLIN R. SPURGEON. The Spurgeon family has many interests in Grant county and Verlin R. Spurgeon is one of its younger representatives and has been chiefly identified with banking, being now cashier and one of the stockholders in the First State Bank of Gas City, and also occupying the same position with the Citizens Bank of Jonesboro. These two banks were established in 1906, resulting from a reorganization of two other institutions. The banks have had the strongest of backing, and it is said that the collective responsibility of the officers and stockholders of the institution represent the total sum of two millions of dollars. The first officers of the banks were: J. Wood Wilson, the prominent banker of Marion, who was president; L. C. Frank, a Gas City business man; R. T. Calender, now cashier of the Farmers Trust & Savings Company of Marion, and president of the two banks at Gas City and Jonesboro. In November, 1912, Mr. Spurgeon took over the interests of Mr. Wilson in the Gas City and Jonesboro banks, and has since been cashier and is practically manager of both institutions. The board of directors is now made up of the following: Edward Bloch, a Gas City merchant and vice president of the bank; R. T. Calender; DeWitt Carter, who was formerly cashier and is now with the Indiana Insulated Wire & Rubber Company of Jonesboro; O. Gordon, a furniture merchant at Gas City; John Malay, a grocer and farmer of Gas City; A. R. Leisure, superintendent of the United States Glass Company of Gas City; William E. Mason, a farmer of Mill township; V. R. Spurgeon; and John L. Thompson, president of the Thompson Bottle Company. The capital stock of the Gas City bank is $25,000, and its deposits in September, 1913, amounted to $182,000, figures which indicate the confidence of the patrons in the stability of the institution. Both banks have been steadily growing since organization.

Verlin R. Spurgeon is the young man whose success as a banker has not come as a matter of chance or fortune, but is due to his sound intelligence, business judgment, and remarkable energy in everything he undertakes. Previous to his locating in Gas City, Mr. Spurgeon was connected with the Rush County National Bank at Rushville, and for about five years was with different traction companies operating in this state, at one time being with the Indianapolis & Cincinnati Traction Company. He was born in Grant county, October 9, 1877, had a public school education and training in the Normal College of Marion, and since leaving school has led a busy and successful career in business affairs.

Mr. Spurgeon's parents are John and Emma (Riggs) Spurgeon. His father was born in Ohio, and the mother in Virginia, but they were married in Grant county. The elder Spurgeon has long been prominent as an educator. For more than thirty years he was connected with the Marion Normal School, and in different high schools. He and his wife now live in Sweetser, and for several years the father has been identified with the large industry at Herbst in the manufacture of drain tile goods. He has been very successful as a business man, is a director in the Farmer's Trust & Savings Company of Marion, owns a large farm, and has been prosperous no less as a tiller of the soil than as a teacher and manufacturer. For many years he has been regarded as one of the leaders in Grant county Democratic politics, served at one time as deputy county treasurer, and has represented his party in both state and county conventions. He is a member of the Christian church.

Verlin R. Spurgeon was married in Pleasant township, October 15, 1900, to Miss Bertha Johnson, who was born in Ohio, was educated in the high school of Sweetser, and is a cultivated woman who knows how to preside over her own home and take her share in the social activities of her community. They have four children: John W., born June 4, 1904, and now in school; Margaret E., born December 8, 1906, and also in school; Albert F., born October 17, 1908; and James P., born October 23, 1910. Mr. Spurgeon is a member of the Christian church, while his wife is a Methodist. Fraternally he is affiliated with the Knights of Pythias at Gas City, and is independent in politics.

Submitted by:Peggy Karol and Karen Overholt

Deb Murray