RUFUS DOOLEY was one of Parke County's leading citizens. He was for over four years a soldier of the Union, for more than half a century a merchant at Rockville, was a leader in his church, in community affairs exercised a quiet but exceedingly helpful influence, and the value of his life remains a significant factor in the county today.

His great-grandparents were Moses and Mary Boyd Dooley, who were of Scotch-Irish-Welsh stock. His first record of them is in North Carolina, about 1755. Later they lived in Bedford County, Virginia, and in 1781, about the close of the Revolutionary war, moved with their five children to Madison, Kentucky, where with a few other pioneers they built a schoolhouse and educated their children. In 1805 they moved to Preble County, Ohio, and entered a Government homestead near the county seat. Mary Boyd Dooley died in 1819 and Moses Dooley in the winter of 1822. He had for several years traveled extensively over Ohio, Indiana and Kentucky, preaching the Gospel to isolated communities. He was a Presbyterian and for the most part subsequent generations of the family have been affiliated with that denomination. The second son was Reuben Dooley, who was born in Bedford County, Virginia, November 14, 1773. He learned the trade of wheelwright, which he followed for several years. After his first marriage he decided to preach, but because of lack of education was unable to qualify, and, losing his zeal, became for a time a disbeliever. Later he turned to preaching without regard for the rules and regulations of the Presbyterian Church and became an itinerant minister of the Christian Church, then called "The NewLight”, a split from the Presbyterian denomination. He had a forceful gift of exhortation and did a great deal to bring the influence of the Gospel to many remote communities throughout the states of North and South Carolina, Virginia, Kentucky, Tennessee, Ohio, Indiana and as far west as Missouri. He was a superior man in ability, courage and devotion, and his independence led him to go contrary to the traditions and teachings of his church when he was satisfied that he was right. He died in April, 1822. His first wife was Leah Railsbach, who died in Kentucky, in 1807, leaving five children, whom he took to relatives in Preble County, Ohio. In September, 1811, he married Rachel Martin, who was a good mother to his first children and had five of her own, the second of whom was Silas Dooley.

Silas Dooley married in 1837 Rachel Landon. The Landons were of English ancestry. Her father, Zebulon Landon, was born near New York City, in 1786, and was a soldier in the War of 1812. He married Elizabeth Rogers and in 1819 started for the West, making the journey in a flat boat from Pittsburgh to Cincinnati. There an accident occurred, when they lost their boat and most of their goods. Their two and a half year old baby, Sarah, also fell in the river and was given up for lost, but the next day was found in a tent, she having been picked up by some boat builders. After the birth of their first child Mr. and Mrs. Silas Dooley, in 1838, moved from Preble County, Ohio, to Parke County, Indiana, making the journey by horse and wagon, and settled on a farm about ten miles north of Rockville, where they lived out their lives.

Of their seven children the third was Rufus Dooley, born August 26, 1842, in a one-room log cabin his parents had built on their homestead in Parke County. Shortly afterward a larger and better home was erected, comprising three rooms, in which the four younger children were born. Silas Dooley was a leader in founding the Christian Church in his community. The parents also had a deep interest in the educational welfare of their children, but decided that only one son could go to college. The oldest son had married before this plan could be carried out, so Rufus was selected. Going to college at that time meant usually the choice of a professional career, and it was his aim to become a physician and surgeon. He was in preparatory school when, in the summer of 1861, he and so many other young men from Parke County answered the call for volunteers. On July 6, 1861, he enlisted in Company H of the Twenty-third Indiana Infantry, which afterwards became the First Heavy Artillery. In January, 1864, he reenlisted. He was with the Army of the Gulf, under Major General Benjamin Butler, participating in the siege and capture of Port Hudson, was at the battle of Baton Rouge and in other movements in the opening of the lower end of the Mississippi, including the capture of New Orleans. In the concluding phases of the war he was at the siege and capture of Mobile, and after the surrender of Lee he was sent with other troops to Texas to defend the southern boundary against the aspirations of the short lived attempt to set up the empire of Maximilian in Mexico. He was honorably discharged with the rank of first sergeant January 10, 1866, after more than four and a half years of continuous military service.

The war had interrupted and changed his plans for an education and professional career. After a term in a business college at Dayton, Ohio, he returned to his native county and found an opening in a small hardware store at Rockville. A few months later a new hardware firm was established, McMillin, Stark & Dooley, Rufus Dooley having been invited to join the other men. He arranged to borrow three thousand dollars, partly with the help of his father's good name. Thus in 1867 he was launched in a career as a merchant, which he followed diligently for fifty-five years, retiring in 1922, on reaching the age of four score. The firm changed several times, being successively Stark & Dooley, Dooley & Connelley, and finally Dooley & Dooley, in which his junior partner was his nephew, A. H. Dooley. While he never had a robust constitution, Rufus Dooley was the last of the old time Rockville business men to retire. He was active and progressive not only as a business man but as a citizen. He sought to give his town more attractiveness, better streets, shade trees, regulations for the betterment of the community, and for many years was a member and president of the town council.

In young manhood he became a member of the Presbyterian Church, was a member of the session for more than thirty years and held the office of clerk of the session of the Memorial Presbyterian Church of Rockville during the last twenty years of his life.

In 1869 Rufus Dooley married Miss Mary McCampbell, who died within the year. On May 17, 1877, he married Susan M. Rice, who passed away January 27, 1887. She was the mother of three children, the youngest, James Montague, dying in infancy. The son Channing Rice Dooley graduated from Purdue University in electrical engineering in 1900, married in 1907 Inez Jones, of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and has two children, Phyllis Amanda and David. Elizabeth Ellen Dooley was married in 1903 to Dr. J. H. Burton, of Rockville, and has three children, Dorothy E., Rufus T. and Eleanor H.

Rufus Dooley on June 6, 1889; married Hasseltine Hinkle, who died March 20, 1930. Mrs. Dooley was president of the Parke County Historical Society. Before her marriage she was principal of the Rockville High School. Mr. and Mrs. Dooley for nearly forty years had an ideal companionship of mutual intellectual and community interest. It was about the time of their marriage that they and other Rockville people founded the Hoosier Literary Society, of which Mrs. Dooley was president from the beginning and which is the oldest literary, historical and scientific club in Rockville. Its membership has been composed of the leading jurists, ministers and business men and their wives. Mr. and Mrs. Dooley were also active in the State and County Historical Societies. Mrs. Dooley for many years was identified with the Daughters of the American Revolution, the Woman's Club of Rockville, the Woman's Relief Corps and the Missionary Society of her church. Rufus Dooley was a charter member of Steel Post of the Grand Army of the Republic. He organized the first Parke County Historical Society and was president, and his influence was helpful in causing to be preserved many historical documents and pioneer relics. He contributed several papers on Civil war times to the Indiana State Historical Society.

Rufus Dooley passed away August 22, 1927. In a memorial address by Rev. Dr. W. R. Graham appeared some statements which may well serve to supplement the brief sketch of facts presented here. "It has been my privilege," said Doctor Graham, "to know rather intimately a goodly number of fine men. Amongst them all none stands out more vividly in my memory for sterling traits of character than Mr. Rufus Dooley. Mr. Dooley had extraordinary ability to inspire confidence ever in those who had opportunity to know him but a short time. His honesty and integrity were so transparently obvious that one gave him one's confidence and trust almost immediately. If I were to mention four outstanding traits of Mr. Dooley's character, they would seem to me to be a sense of humor, extraordinary courage, a deep and natural kindliness and constant diligence in his business. Mr. Dooley was one of the most sincerely religious men I have ever known. His was not a: second hand faith. It was sturdy and enduring because it was wrought out of his own experience and by the efforts of an active mind to find its own way through the mysteries of the spiritual.

By Charles Roll, A.M.
The Lewis Publishing Company, 1931

MRS. FRANK J. SHEEHAN, former president of the Indiana Federation of Clubs, president (1931) of the Indiana Library and Historical Board, and who by appointment of Governor Leslie is a member of the Library Building Commission for the erection of a new state library building, is a resident of Gary. Not only Indiana people but hundreds of thousands of visitors from all the states in the Union acknowledge their special gratitude to her for her years of persistent effort and leadership in the movement to preserve the Indiana dunes, out of which movement eventually came the creation and establishment of the Indiana Dunes State Park in 1923. Mrs. Sheehan is frequently referred to as the "Dunes Lady."

She was born near Jackson, Michigan, in 1882 and for several years was a teacher of history and has been an enthusiastic historical student. She gra.duated with the A. B. degree from the University of Michigan in 1904. She had the honor of being appointed by the Detroit Chapter of the Colonial Dames to a scholarship in American history at the university and held that scholarship when she was awarded the Master's degree in 1905. For two years she acted as instructor of history at Big Rapids, Michigan, and in 1908 became a teacher of history in the Gary High School. She was thus engaged until 1912, when she was married to Hon. Frank J. Sheehan, who subsequently became judge of the Juvenile Court of Lake County.

Since her marriage her interests have taken on a very broad scope and have brought her participation in both state and national organizations.

Her efforts to preserve the Indiana dunes were crowned with success by the action of the General Assembly of 1923 in establishing the Dunes Park. Among official recognition bestowed upon her for her part in this magnificent enterprise she was the first and only woman elected to an honorary life membership in the Chicago Geographic Society. The national conference on state parks honored her by election to the office of treasurer and she was appointed chairman of the committee on natural scenery in the General Federation of Women's Clubs. In the State Federation Mrs. Sheehan was chairman of the committee on forestry and waterways, 1916-1917; of the Dunes Park committee, 1917-23; corresponding secretary, 1921-23.

Mrs. Sheehan served as president of the Indiana Federation of Clubs in 1925-27 and was Indiana director of the General Federation of Women's Clubs in. 1928-30. She is chairman, 1930-32, of the Library Extension committee. Mrs. Sheehan was general chairman of the building campaign for the Young Women's Christian Association in Gary. Among many other activities reference should also be made to her labors in compiling a two volume manuscript history entitled "Gary in the World War," which is her personal tribute to the memory of those boys in the community who were with the colors. Mrs. Sheehan was president in 1915-17 of the College Club of Gary, is a member of the Woman's Club, Historical Society, the Pioneer Society of Gary, the Daughters of the American Revolution, the Young Women's Christian Association and honorary member of the Business and Professional Women's Club. Mrs. Sheehan is a member of the Indiana Historical Society, the Indiana Library Trustees Association, American Library Association. She is a member of the executive committee of the Indiana Lincoln Union, parliamentarian of the Indiana Daughters of the American Revolution, and has been secretary of the National Dunes Park Association since its organization in 1915. She was appointed in 1925 by Governor Jackson a member of the board of the Indiana and historical departments, and served as secretary, 1925-30, and now holds the office of president.

By Charles Roll, A.M.
The Lewis Publishing Company, 1931

CHARLES MAHLON NIEZER, president of the First and Tri State National Bank & Trust Company of Fort Wayne, is one of the leading business men of his city, and one endowed with natural and acquired attributes which make him an executive and turn others to him for counsel as well as constructive citizenship. He was born at Monroeville, Indiana, March 31, 1877, a son of John B. and Sarah T. (Eyanson) Niezer. The father was born at Fort Wayne, Indiana, and served Allen County as auditor from 1886 to 1890, and was one of the prominent merchants, shippers, bankers and public-spirited citizens of Monroeville for years, but at the time of his death he was a resident of Fort Wayne.

The public schools of Monroeville grounded Charles M. Niezer in the fundamentals of an education, and prepared him for entry to Notre Dame University, South Bend, Indiana. During the three years he was a student of that institution he played on its football team, and served as manager of the university track team. In June, 1899, he was graduated from Indiana University, with the degree of Bachelor of Arts, and in June, 1900, received the degree of Bachelor of Laws from the same institution. His powers of oratory were demonstrated in many a contest, and laid the foundation for the prestige he was to enjoy later on in life of being a most forceful and eloquent public speaker. In connection with university life Mr. Niezer served during 1919 and 1920 as trustee of the University of Indiana. In September, 1900, Mr. Niezer entered Columbia University, New York City, and from it received the degree of Master of Arts, in 1901, and here again he was a member of the football team, and stroked the 1901 University crew.

Returning from Columbia University, Mr. Niezer entered upon the practice of law at Fort Wayne, in 1901, and in his profession rose to a position of great prominence among the practitioners at the bar of Indiana. In 1920 and 1921 he was president of the Allen County Bar Association; he was a member of the educational committee of the Indiana State Bar Association in 1921, and he has served the American Bar Association as vice president for Indiana. In November, 1922, because of the illness of Charles H. Worden, president of the First National Bank, and upon the earnest recommendation of Mr. Worden, Mr. Niezer was prevailed upon to abandon his lucrative law practice and accept the presidency of the bank, Fort Wayne's foremost financial institution.

At the time of his acceptance the architect's plans for the present magnificent banking house had been adopted, and Mr. Niezer, a director of the bank, was acting as chairman of the building committee. As head of the First National, Mr. Niezer discharges his duties with that poise and dignity so characteristic of him, and he is an active member of the American Bankers Association, representing Indiana with that body as its vice president.

Mr. Niezer's service as president of the Fort Wayne Chamber of Commerce during 1923 marked a period of constructive civic effort. Prior to that he had served as a leader of the Commercial Club, and was an active participant in the campaign of its reorganization. As a director of the Chamber, as the commander of the important Division B in the campaign for a new building, and in many other capacities, he has given without reserve of his talents and energies.

He is president of the Catholic Community Center Association, which has put up a splendid building to serve as a nucleus of civic and religious inspiration throughout Northern Indiana. In addition he is chairman of the committee on endorsement and coordination, and a member of the budget committee of the Community Chest, and he has been one of the consistent supporters of various charitable organizations. He is a trustee of the Irene Byron Sanitarium, and a director of the Fort Wayne Anti-Tuberculosis League, which he assisted in organizing, and for which he waged a very successful membership campaign. His work as chairman of the home service of the Red Cross has been of exceptional value.

Another very important form of service with which he has long been connected is that of forwarding the Boy Scouts movement, and he is a member of the executive committee of Anthony Wayne Council.

As a member, director and president, during 1927, of the Fort Wayne Rotary Club, and as a member of the Quest Club, the University Club, the Fort Wayne Country Club, the Sons of the American Revolution, the Izaak Walton League and other organizations, Mr. Niezer served in a broad capacity. For many years he has been a leader in the activities of the Knights of Columbus, and has been Indiana's state deputy to the Supreme Council of this organization. He is a supporter of a constructive work of the Loyal Order of Moose, and he has served as a member of the social and community welfare committee of the Fort Wayne Lodge, B. P. O. E. In addition to the above, he is a trustee of the Gibault Home for Boys at Terre Haute, Indiana, established and maintained by the Catholics of Indiana.

During the period of the World war Mr. Niezer entered fervently into the various financial campaigns, although his membership in the Allen County Council of Defense, the clearing house for all local war activities, demanded the major part of his attention. As chairman of the Speakers' Bureau and of the Liberty Loan campaigns; as city director of the Third War Savings Stamps campaign; as a member of the committee of organization of the Deferred Classification League; as state vice chairman and member of the local executive committee of the Knights' of Columbus War Fund; as a member of the state committee and vice county chairman of the United War Work campaign; as chairman of the Civilian Relief Department of the Home Service Bureau, and through other channels, Mr. Niezer gave freely, not only of his time and money, but legal knowledge as well.

In addition to his connection with the First and Tri State National Bank & Trust Company Mr. Niezer is affiliated; as an official or stockholder, with a number of the different financial and commercial concerns of Fort Wayne, being a director of the Tri-State Loan & Trust Company; president of the Home Telephone & Telegraph Company; president of the General Hosiery Company and counsel for the Medical Protective Company.

He is an active member of the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, and is a trustee of the cathedral congregation, of the cathedral fund for the education of boys who do not possess other means to secure their schooling. As a member of the board of governors and of the board of auditors of the cathedral, and of the Catholic Extension Society of America and a trustee of "Our Sunday Visitor," a nationally known and influential publication, established and edited for many years by Rt. Rev. John F. Noll, Mr. Niezer broadens the vista of his field of usefulness. During the summer of 1920 he took an extended trip abroad, touring Europe.

On October 8,1906, Mr. Niezer was married to Miss Rose M. Fox, a daughter of the late Louis Fox, a prominent manufacturer and financier, and a member of the Fort Wayne board of park commissioners. Mr. and Mrs. Niezer have three children: Louis Fox, Rosemary Lou and Margaret Sarah.

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By Charles Roll, A.M.
The Lewis Publishing Company, 1931

GEORGE S. CLIFFORD was one of the leading citizens of Evansville. His energy and spirit were permeated by civic ideals and an enthusiasm for larger things that made his life a constant source of constructive advantage to his community.

He was born at Evansville, April 8, 1858, and died at Phoenix, Arizona, while seeking recuperation for his health, on December 10, 1927, when in his seventieth year. His parents were Samuel and Susanna (Grant) Clifford. His father was born in Maine, graduated from Bowdoin College, and was in the milling business at Evansville. Susanna Grant was of a Kentucky family. Her great- grandmother was a sister of Daniel Boone. Her mother, America Letcher, was a sister of Robert Letcher, governor of Kentucky in 1840 and later minister to Mexico.

George Sonntag Clifford was a small child when his parents died, and he and brother and sister grew up in the home of their aunt and uncle, Mr. and Mrs. George Sonntag. He attended public schools; private schools, the Academy of Professor Sterling, for two years was a student in Hanover College of Indiana, and in 1879 was graduated from Vanderbilt University at Nashville, Tennessee. He studied law in the office of Major Alexander Gilchrist, was admitted to the bar, but never used his knowledge for practice. He was in the insurance business with John Jay Chandler, but chiefly his business energies identified him with the George S. Sonntag Hardware Company. After the death of his uncle he and his brother, Alexander, formed the Clifford Hardware Company, and they made this one of the largest wholesale hardware houses in Southern Indiana. George S. Clifford withdrew from the active management in 1913 and was manager of the James L. Orr Investment Company during his later years.

He was associated with the foremost people of Evansville, whether in business, in civic promotions, in special good fellowship, and it is possible to record the important elements in his life and character from the tributes of his friends. A former editor of the Evansville Courier said that his "interests were so wide that they included measures for the protection of bird life to the founding of a college. He worked for women's suffrage and for prohibition when to advocate either was the sign of eccentricity rather than of vision. His former pastor wrote: "He loved flowers, birds, books, music, poetry, eloquence, and, with the passion of an Isaiah for Jerusalem, his City, which he would have adorned with beautiful monuments and rare paintings, with stately avenues and happy homes."

”On all the finer things of the life of the city is to be found the impress of his lofty character, his large and puissant personality," declared Howard Rossa. "In many of these his name may no longer be associated in memory, though we need not go far to seek the reasons. He had in remarkable degree the talent to inspire others. They carried on the work and reaped the outward reward, but chiefly it was because of his selfishness. He was so absorbed in the end to be obtained that his own part in its fulfillment seemed to him, in comparison with the goal achieved, to be of little note.

Two noble monuments stand to his memory, Evansville College and the union of the two ,oldest Presbyterian churches of Evansville. The memorial resolution adopted by the trustees of Evansville College declared that “he was fully entitled to the name that he has achieved as the 'Father of Evansville College.' He not only dreamed, but he, with patience and enthusiasm and great skill, brought the dream to realization. His devotion to youth, his love for his city and his desire to make life at its best possible for the use of his city created the dream, so that he became possessed of the idea that a college in Evansville would minister to these fundamental needs of the community. The problems that confronted old Moore's Hill College, and which made its removal a necessity, developed the opportunity for action; and through the power of the leadership in the community that was given by Mayor Benjamin Bosse the dream has worked out, and the foundation laid for Evansville College. . . . . He was properly named as one of the charter members of the board of trustees of the institution. He has given untiringly of his time throughout all the years. No interests of the institution have been beyond the reach of his support."

Another monument to his memory is the union of the two oldest Presbyterian churches of Evansville. He was a member of Grace Presbyterian Church until his marriage and then joined the Walnut Street Church, in which he became a ruling elder. He was chairman of the committee to consider uniting the two congregations and had a leading part in effecting the union, resulting in the First Presbyterian Church of Evansville, formed in 1926.

During the World war Mr. Clifford was chairman of the County Council of Defense and fuel administrator for Southern Indiana. He was a charter member of the Crescent Club, Rotary Club and Country Club of Evansville, organized the Evansville Academy of Science and the Audubon Society, and was the first president of the Art League. He was a director of the men's board of the Young Women's Christian Association, was on the board of Associated Charities of Vanderburg County and a member of the State Board of Charities, and was on the board of Thornton Home for retired ministers and their wives, of the Presbyterian Church at Newburg. The first honorary degree granted by Evansville College was conferred upon him in 1922.

Mr. Clifford married, October 23, 1894, Miss Emily Orr, daughter of James Laughlin and Kate (Howes) Orr. Her grandfather, Samuel Orr, was one of the earliest settlers of Evansville and founded the Orr Iron Company, an industry still in existence, his grandson; Samuel Orr II being president of the company, while Samuel Orr III is a young man preparing to take a place in the business. The Howes family came from New England. Mr. and Mrs. Clifford had two sons, George Orr, born in 1897, and James Lowry, born in 1901. George O. is vice president of the Evansville Tool Works, and James L. is a chemical engineer. Both sons are graduates of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology at Boston. George O. Clifford married Mary Mitchell, daughter of Dr. Samuel C. Mitchell, of Richmond, Virginia, and they have two children, George 0., Jr., born in 1924, and Alice, born in 1927.

By Charles Roll, A.M.
The Lewis Publishing Company, 1931

Deb Murray