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Ellwood Roberts.

Biographical annals of Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, containing genealogical records of representative families, including many of the early settlers and biographical sketches of prominent citizens (Volume 1) online

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GENEALOGY COLLECTION



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PENNSYLVi>r\



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CONTAINING

l^A[,OGICAL RECORDS OF REPRESENT
MANY OF THE EARLY SETTLERS



TIVE . . lNCLLDlN(i

AND BIOGRAPHICAL



SKETCHES OF PROMLNENli CITIZEN'



ELL \V (JO IJ K ( J l; J -. W T ir-. EDIT



Kaoirlfdge of kindred and 1/ie i/eneit/iif/ifs irf the illicit
'Hh a part of the knoicledr/e of a m<in\o own nelf. It

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VOL I.



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THE LKWIS PU




I



BIOGRAPHICAL ANNALS

OF

MONTGOMERY COUNTY

PENNSYLVANIA

CONTAINING

GENEALOGICAL RECORDS OF REPRESENTATIVE FAMILIES, INCLUDING

MANY OF THE EARLY SETTLERS AND BIOGRAPHICAL

SKETCHES OF PROMINENT CITIZENS



KLLWOOD ROBER TS. EDITOR



••Knoirledye i>f kindred and the (jineulofiifs of th, unrinit f.iuiilu.s disirrttl, th, IdyUest praise, lleirin
niiisixtct/i II pari of the knoicledye nf n miin'>: oim stlf. It i\ ,i ijrmt .ipur to rirtiie to look hack oh the irorth
of our line."— Lord Boron.

■■There i« no heroir poem in the world tint /.v ,// //„ Ijott ,oi the life of ,t mao.:' — s'/c Walter Sroft.



ILLUSTRATED



VOL.



T. S. BENHAM & COMPANY

AND

THE LEWIS PUBLISHING COMPANY

Nkw York Chicago

1 i1 4



INTRODUCTORY 1136168



lleginning- with the Cdiiiiiis;- df the Swede-, to the hanks of the n\er Delaware, in the
early ])art of the sexenteenth eeiUiin-. ilown to the present day, the twentieth century of the
great region known 1)_\- the distinguishing nauie of I'ennsyhania, at first a province and ncnv
a commonwealth of eoiumanding importance, has held, at whate\er stage in its de\-elop-
ment and progiiess, a conspicuous and highly important place in its relationship to the sis-
terhood of states comprising the great and unhroken Federal I'nion. It was the central
colony an.d the connecting link between the north and south for many years during the
t\)rmati\-e governmental epoch; its men of influence molded the political history of the
American people during many years. Its principal city was long the seat of government
of the I'nited States, and has been, from the earliest days to the present, a i)rincii)al centre
of all that marks the progress of civilization — in the arts and sciences, in e\ery product of
hiuiian mind and hand. Not once in the almost two and a half centin'ies of its existence
has I'enns_\-l\ania retrograded. Its career has e\"er l)een a steadfast and unfaltering "for-

The histor}- of this great commonwealth and of man)- of its sul)di\isions has been
written along civil, political and military lines b_\- \-arious authors and at different times,
each succeeding- writer adding a new chapter of annals, or giving a different coloring to
a story already told, treating the subject from a different view point, or in the full glare
of a light which to his i)redecessor was l)ul dim and uncertain. The splendid narrative
affords an inspiration to the men and women of the present day. as it assuredly will to
those who are soon to succeed them, and entirely justifies the pregnant words of Martin-
eau : "To have ha<l forefatliers renowned for honor.aljle deeds, t<i l)elong by nature to
those wild have bravely borne their part in life, and refreshed the world with mighty
thoughts and healthy admiration, is a privilege which it were mean and self-willed to
despise. It is a security given us of old, which it were false-hearted not to redeem, and
in virtues bred of a noble stock, mellowed as they are by re\erence. there is often a grace
and ri])eness wanting- to self-made and brand-new excellence. Of like \-aIue to a people
are hemic national traditions, gi\'ing them a determinate character to sustain among the
tribes of men, making them familiar with images of great and strenuous life, and kind-
ling them with faith in gloriotts possibilities."

While Montgomery was not ci-eated as a sepai-ate county until 17S4. its history is.
until tiiat time, identical with that of the three original counties organized by I'enn —
Chester, Bucks and Philadelphia — and at least a portion of its territory was the scene
of some of tlie most important of the transactions wiiich marked the forniati\e period of
tlie great commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and .some of its people were actors in those
stirring and momentous events. Here the foundations of civil and religious liberty were



iv INTRODUCTORY

laid deep and strong. The indi\"idual was exalted in all his best attributes. Fe;:n had pro-
claimed to all who wcjuld come that they should feel assured, for themselves and for all
generations to come after them, of their freedom as men and christians, "that they may
not be brought in bondage but by their own consent, for we put the power in the peo-
ple." He made it his greatest care to frame a constitution "as near as may be conven-
iently to the primitixe. ancient and fundamental laws of the Kingdom of England." but
introducing the democratic method of making all offices elective, and a new principle of
perfect religious freedom — "that no man nor numljer of men upon earth hath power or
authority to rule o\er men's consciences in religious matters" — which stood in marked con-
trast with the theocratical ideas of the Puritans in Xew England, and to the aristccrati-
cal reign of Locke in Carolina.

In response to Penn's liberal scheme of government, his declaration of his intention
to "try this holy experiment of a free colony for, all mankind," there came a sturdy peo-
ple — men, and women, too. of brawn and brain and conscience, their hearts fervent in rev-
erence of God and a desire for religious and ci\il liberty — who had voluntarily separated
themselves from their natixe land in order to enjoy the pri\-ileges which had been denied
them there. It woidd lie wirth much could we be affordetl a glimpse of these pioneers.
They were men of no ordinary mold. Great as was their strength of character, and broad
(for the times) as was their mental scope, they were building far better than they knew.
Simple and clean in their lixes, tlie homes which they builded were humble, but they were
the seat of all the domestic virtues, and the children they reared inherited the athletic frame,
rugged constitution and noble principles of their forbears.

Montgomery county affords a peculiarly interesting field for such research as has
been required in the making of the volumes now presented to the reader. Her sons at home
and abroail haxe shed lustre upon her name by deeds of gallantry on land antl sea. bv
achievements in the arts and sciences, in the professions, in statesmanship, and in com-
mercial affairs, ^^d^erever they hax'e dispersed, in the long-ago or in more recent davs,
they liaAc been a power for ideal citizenship and good government. Even in the colon-
ial period, when its territory yet formed a portion of the county of Philadelphia, were men
there of the highest attainments and of world-wide renown. Here lived the Aluhlenbergs,
David Rittenhouse. John Lukens, Benjamin Lay, and many others who. b}- natural ability,
scholarly acquirements and, above all, by their intense patriotism, shed upon their age. a
lustre \\hich yet illumines our own, and will be transmitted to the latest generation. The
Revolutionary era abounded in memorable events in T\Iontgomery county. At \*alley Forge
the army under ^\■ashington endured with patience privations unparalleled in behalf of free-
dom and independence. The valleys of the Schuylkill and Perkiomen were the scene of
some of the most remarkable strategic movements of the heroic period. Washington. La-
fayette, Wayne and other famous leaders were familiar figures to the forefathers of that
day, and of whose own number were men who fought at Germantown, at Brandy wine and
at ]ilonmouth. In the great Civil War. men of Montgomery County were among the
most valiant and faithful defenders of the l'ni(jn. It gaxe to the country Hartranft, Han-
cock, Slemmer, Zook. and a luist of others whose names are emljlazoned upon the roll of
fame. Three go\ernors of the State — Portel", Shunk and Hartranft — were born within



INTRODUCTORY v

the limits of this historic old county, and the home of Pennypacker. a descendant <if diie
of its oldest families, is upon the bank of the Perkiomen.

Thus, in each succeeding generation, and at every stage of i;s progress, the pe iple
of the county nf Montgnmery have had the service of men of the Inftiest character and
liighest capaliility, in arms, in the arts of peace, in statesmanship, in affairs and in letters.
It is to connect the acti\e progressix'e men of the present generation with their illustrious
ancestry that the present volumes have been undertaken, in the convection that

"It is indeed ;i blessing when tlie \irtiies
Of noble races are hereditary.
And do derive themselves from the imitation
Of virtuons ancestors."

The pul)Iishers here take Dccasicm to express their obligations to the editor. 'Sir. VA\-
wood Rob.erts. "Xatixe here, and to the manner born," he has given to his labors not
only diligence and industry, Imt something of that enthusiasm which is praiseworthily be-
coming in him who hokls a proper appreciation of a noble people from whom he sprang
ami amidst whom he xvas reared. With reference to the biographical matter it is to be
said that the utmost care has been exercised. Yet, in some cases, it may be that a sketch
will be found incomplete or faulty, and such shortcoming is ascribable to the paucitv of
data furnished, many families being without exact records in their familv line. In all cases
the sketch has been submitted to the subject or to his representative for correction or
rexision, and upon him rests the final responsibility in case of omission or inaccurac\-.

It is confitlently believed that the present work will prove a real addition to the
mass of literature concerning the people of the historic region under consideration, and that,
without it, much A'aluable information therein contained would be irretrievably lost, owing
to the passing awa}- of many custodians oi family records and the disappearance of such
matter. PUBLISHERS.



INDEX.



Alderfer, John B., 319
Allebach, D. Melvin. 17-'
Allebaugli, Elmer S., 255
Anders. Samuel K., 19
Anders, William S.. 499
Anderson, John F.. 124
Argue. Andrew K., 63
Arnoldy. Henrie. 300
Arthur, Albanus C, 393
Ashton, Charles B.. 95
Auchenbach, William. 525
Ayars, Matilda M., 419

Bach, William P., 215
Baker, Andrew H.. 21
Barlow, Harvey, 199
Barlow, Joel, 394
Bate, Richard H., 4S7
Bate. William T., 484
Bauer, George, 195
Bean. Wilmer M., 97
Beaver, Barnet K., 438
Beeber, Thomas R.. 30T
Beener, Christian. 219
Bellows'. Horace M.. 436
Benner. Milton B.. 307
Bergey, David H., 50
Berlvliimer. Charles, 155



Berkhinier. (


'.eorge


BerkhniHT,


nhn.


Kinder, Will


am J


Hishoi). Dan


rl M.


KlaltneV, Jol


n 177


P.lnck. ]Wuy.


ii'm r


R,>„r... FJi.


ilicth



Bradle



.104



y. Andrew J., 4S0
r.rant. Samuel S., 427
l^recht, John E.. 364
Brooke, William. 205
Rrophy. Joseph J., 360
Brownljack. Henry M., 2.
Huckman, Thomas, T12
Rnckwaltcr, I. \.. J^2



Butcher. William, 1.?.*^
Bnzby, Thomas P., 528

Caley, Cyrus H., 107
Cameron, James S., 355
Carey, Joseph H., 203
Cassel, Benjamin C, 174
Cassel, Isaac R., 394
Cas-selberry, Clarence 'M.. 181
Castner, George W., 296
Chain. B. Percv. 89
Childs, Louis M., 42
Childs, S. Powell, 127
Clamer, Francis J.. 56
Clark, Isaac J., 528
Clayton, Abraham T., 59
Clayton, Hamilton, 65
Clayton, William L., 469
Cleaver. Chalkley K.. 338
Cleaver, Jonathan. 540
Clemmer, Josiah. 247
Clymer. Frank M.. .^94
Colton, John M., ^24
Comly. Harry. 380
Couard. Henry F., ij'i
Conrad, John M.. 159
Cooke, Jay, 62
Corson, Ellwood M.. 292
Corson, Isabella F.. 471
Corson. Mary. 471
Corson, Jos'eph K.. 44
Coulston, Joseph P.. 524
Coulston. Walter. 74
Cox, B. Wilson. tI ?
Cox. Charles A., 510
Cozens, James A.. ,^yj
Crawford, .•\lbert, 224
Cressman. Henry C, 102
Custer, Horace .A., 2ro

Davidhciser, Franklin 1! . 43
Davidheiser. Milton R , 430
Davidheiser. Willi.nm W.. 416
Davis, Jesse B., 93
Davis, Jesse M.. 322
Davis. Tohn. 182
Davis. Mary .\., 463
l)a\i-, rile Family. 71



DePrefontaine, Charles. 147
DePrefontaine. Walter, 150
Detwiler. George M., 358
Dingee, Albert H.. 529
Dingee. Lester I.. 529
Dotterrer. Augustus' \\'., 395
Dresher, Samuel, 460
Duddv, John. 448
Duffie'ld. Frank W., 158
Dyer, John T., 35
Ebert, Horace M., 9
Edwards, Jacob, 527
Egbert, Allan C. 257
Eo'olf, George L., ,?96
Ehst, Jacob M., 407
Ellis, David M.. 3-'S
Erb, Israel M., 381
Es'penship, Matilda B., 347
Evans. Benjamin, 297
Evans, L. Krvder, 213
Evans. Miller' D., 222
Evans. Montgomerv. 4
Evans, Oliver M.. u(>
Evans, William, 298

Famous, Benjamin F., 164
F'arrall, Frank P., 330
Feather, Hiram B., 187
Fegelv, Calvin. 191
Fegely. W. O., 369
F'egley. FVanklin G.. 27^
Felty, L. R., 540
Finkbiner, U. S. (j., 2.v8
F'isher, Adam, 452
Fisher, Harvey S., .184
F'isher, John F.. 175
Fisher, Samuel R., 2,?o
Fisher, S. Wilson, 264
I'leck, Byron M., 463
FornancL-. Jos'eph. 373

■•"reed, Elias K., 4<)i
l-'reed. William G,, \(v)
Fretz, Allen M., 245
Fritz, John S., 202
Fritz, John S., 493
'•"ronhiser, Samuel, 183
IVorer. Henry. 350
I'ryer. Josiah. .^90



INDEX.



Gable. Percival K., 77
Garber, Joseph S., 420
Gehman, Abner H., 277
Gehret, George W., 361
Geist, Howard W.. 351
Gilbert, Elias H., 220
Gilbert, James \\'., 20?
Gilbert, John G.. 132
Gilbert, ^laurice E., 250
Gilbert. William, 404.
Gillin, Robert H., 451
Gillin, Thomas S., 449
Glenn. Thomas .\., S31
Godshalk, Frank S., 318
Godshalk, George D., 31 ^
Godslialk. T- \V., 493
Gov:]..'. r^..:'r:' U,. 252

Go.v, > . I G.. 362

Gntv ' , ; - I. . 312
Gol«.Ji.. J c !. \'.. 8
Groff, Heurv A.. 27
Groff, Joseph W., 36S



Hainer, Levi .\V.. 295
Hall. Joanna, 379
Hall, William 'SI.. 379
Hallman, Harry F.. 265
Hallman, James M.. 253
Hallowell, Alfred P., 66
Hallowell, Jacob L., 435
Hallowell, Joseph W., 136
Hallowell, William J., 481
Hamel, George, Sr., 539
Hampton, John. 52
Harrv. Edwin M.. 203
Hart.' Andrew L.. 458
Hart, Elwood L., 14:
Hart. Zieber, 220
Hartenstine. Samuel. 406
Hartranft. Caroline K.. 266
Hartranft. John F.. S17
Harvev. David G.. 67
Hawkin^, Charles G.. 413
Heckler, Isaac R.. 3S2
Heebner. Jacoli W.. ^V
Hclffenstein. Albert,' 118
Hendricks, Abraham H., 186
Hendricks, Joseph H.. :'^:^3
Hcrner, Henry H., 447
Herner, John R., 475
Hieh. David K.. V'8
Hiali. .SanuK'i 11.. 530



Jarrett. John H., 354
Jarrett, Samuel F.. 444
Jenkins. Earl A.. 11
Jenkins. Howard ^1.. 38
Jenkins, Parker, 426
Johnson, Jacob S., 237
Jones, George W., 289
Jones. Jonathan R., 542

Kane, Edward F., sSS
Kane, James J„ 538
Keeler, Henry A., loi
Kehl, Albert G., 542
Kennedy, David R., 119
Kepler, Fnrman, 422
Kepler, Levi F., 453
Keyscr, Esther W.. 308
Keyser, Milton T., 114
Kibblehouse. Ralph K., 268
Kirk, Tesse 7.7^
Knipe. Irvin P , 02
Kratz. FKiiry W" . 432
Kranse. Anna J . 267
Kriebel. -^Ijraham. 421
Krieble, Jesse S , 290
Krieble. John K.,-I7S
Kulp. Sa-nnel N,. 86
Kurt.?. Irwin B., 196

Landis, T. Horace. Sr
Landis, Jonas SL. .364
Laros. Jesse S., 478
Larzelere, Nicholas H., 6
Latch, Edward B., 121
Leaf, Henrv P., 19=;
Lee, J. Ellwood, 22
Leitenl)erger, John, 316
Lenhart, John E., 446
Levengood. Peter Y., 260
Lewin, T. Milton, 482
Lewis, Effie jNI., 494
Linde, C-'tbarine. 279
Linde. Chris-Han. 279
Lindsav, .-\ndrew. 69
Livezev, M. - R., 6o
Livezey, T. Ellwood. 32
Livezey. Thomas H., 5:0
Lodge. John W.. 176
Longstr^tb. Sarah H.. 454
Looniis. John. 251
Longhlin. .Mexander, 472
Lovett. Ribert, J.90
Lowery. Ha.rv S. 531



Hill.v,


.^. \l.,lil>H,,'47^


Lukcn-. CharlL-.. ^o;


H,ll...


\^.:t, 1, S.,^308


Lnkenv. (i,.,r,e W."?I7


H.n.i.


" -:... ; i,„i7 A., 4S9


Luker., (n'M-Kc T.. so6


Hi.i,..,


.n .-.^H iw\ .,1 Montgomery


Lukcns, lawond, VJd


(


iiiiiii\. .;4[


Lukens, The Familv, ,02


Hobart


Wiili.ini Al . 189


Lukens, William E., 521


HoI.MM


, b'rr, l.Ml.l C, 12




Hoff.. ■


' f' ir>' n |-.. 16


Manv. Charles H . 476


HoU-.


■.!^- . '..rles.96


March. Tb.p.as J. 324


Hoi'..


^; 1. ...... _C.. 197


Martin, Williim 1., s4


HolK.




Afatlier. Charles. ^,


Hoot. I


Hwiind ^^5^


Mather, K:r„-. ,S,


Hoover


Franci^'C. 162


Matlu-u- l-:,l' .r. '^o


Hoovei


Hiram C. >o


Manck. ri'u biiiiilv. ^00


Hower


Frank A., T6:;


McCap.i. I,,~ ■■', W., ',^4


Hughes


, The Faniilv,'282


McFarland. The 1-amilv.



JMcGinlev. Joseph J., 225
McHarg, John S., 446
McHarg, William, 367
McKinlay, John, 348
McMahon, George, 423
Meschter, George K., 306
Messinger, S. L., 216
Metz, Abraham K., 445
Metz, John K., 309
Mills, Ellis, 3^1
Mintzer, William :\I., 25
Moore, Herbert L'., 4,9
^b.nre. M .\nna. 497^
.AbiruM;;. ( K'^rge C. 109
,\b.n-|-, .b-lin R. 139
\b.rri~. ( il'vcr G., 409
M' 'I'l' .n. I I'r 1-arni. .^19
M.y.v. i./.a, E.. 470
.Mnrpli), .\,„lrew J.. 479
.Murpliv, lieniamin F.. 163
.Alurphy, George D., 141

Nash, Daniel, 502
Nash, Harrv L., 228
Nash, Joseph v.. 125
Neiman, Howard Y., 214
Newlni. Franklin. 271
Newport. David. 129
Nipp.v William D., s^i
Noble. Snnnel. 6!
Nyce. Edwin S., 404
Nyce. Jacob P.. 315

Oberholtzer. :\ [orris B.. 360
O'Brien. Michael P.. 76"
Ortt, Rowley K., 83

Penrose, Benjamin F., 383
Phillips. Thonias W.. 140
Pifer, Georee W., 228
Porter. T. Elmer. 400
Potts. William W.. 326

Rambo. Charles W.. 231
Ramev. Cl'arles. 227
Ramsev. Kllcn D . 343
Rapp. Piln- s 4_>ij
Raudenl.-i-.li. ( )ueii M,
Reifs:n-,U-r. Horace 1^-514
Reigner. Jesse B.. 350
Rex. John H., 64 "
Richards, -\".ia F. . 190
Richard^-. William B , 321
Richard. -> I'-n. 1 D.,' 10
Ri.ghter, li.-r;-.-.' I'.. |j8
Roberfs, \l-.u-iio-i I'... ,12
Roberts, Cinidis 1|., 274
Roberts, F.llwnod. 542
Roberts, Hnqh. 88*
Roberts. Willis R . 160
K idrnb.-iivdi. \N-illnm H.. 11
'-• ■■-. Tl,^. l-'amilv, ^16



Ku>er. J -h-i D., 303
Rupert. William W.. 207
Ruth, Jacob K.. 310



Sands, Jfor-iti,
Sassaman, He



206
■y S.,



INDEX.



Saylor. Albert G,, 198
Saylor, Elmer E., 422
Schall. John W., go
Scheldt. Adam, 104
Schirmer. John. 157
Schneider. Henry W., 269
Schrack. Tohn, ,^98
Schreiher. Jolm S., 138
Schreiber, Theodore. 133
Schwab. George M., 152
Schwenk, Samuel Z., 399
Schweyer. Henry A., 346
Seiple. Samuel C, ,S44
Seipt. George A.. 311
Shade. Jacob. 414
Shade, John M., 208
Shaner, Harry A., 413
Shellenberger. Edwin M.. 170
Shelly. Daniel W., 543
Shelmire, Tohn S.. 401
Sheppard. William. 261
Shoemaker. Jesse C.. 164
Shoemaker. Joseph A.. 144 1
Shoemaker, Lonis' R.. 378
Shoemaker, Marv S.. 148
Shoemaker. Witfiam H., 146
Shiiler, William R., 357
Simpson. Charles. 417
Slingluff, Henry G, 142
Slmglnff, Willi.im lb. 280
Slough, l-lpbrann h\. 303
Smith. Frank L.. 424
Smith. Newberry A., 46
Smith. O. P., 212
Smith. Thomas V., 258
Snell. William C, 392
Snyder. John C. 294
Snyder. Stephen. 319
Sonnner, Henry J., 499
Sonder, Elmer N.. 476
Soudcr, Harvcv. 3=2



Spang. Joseph. 204
Springer. Daniel J., 239
Stager, John, 544
Stahlnecker, Henry W., 467
Stannard, Edward J., 153
Stannard, Lewis J., 323
Steele. Thomas C, 211
Stmson, Charles H., 87
Stong, Lewis B., 133
Stout. Amanda, 492
Stout, John D., 420
Stover, Christian, 401
Strahan, J. A., 107
Strasser, Ernest W., 461
Streeper, Thomas' S,, 332
Strehle, August, 474
Styer. Freas, 320
Summers, The Family. 534
Summers, William, 536
Supplee, J. Henderson, 506
Supplee, Joel. 249
Swavely, Samuel B., 412

Taft, Eugene L., 254
Taggart, William, 235
Taubel. Louis E., 223
Templeton, Charles. 85
Thomas. Benjamin, 36
Thomson, James K., 49
Thomson. Thomas, 522
Titlow, Jacob R., 234
Todd, John, 188
Townsend, Edward Y., .46
Townsend, Henry T., 48
Townsend, John W., 48
Twaddell, John H., 200
Tyson, John H.. 99
Tyson, Joseph H., 310

Updegrove, E'rancis B., 349
Vanderslice, John }il., 192



VanHorn, James. 167
Voorhees, J. Frank. 396

Wagner. John T., 221
Walt, Abram. 370
Walt, Andrew, 462
Walton, Amos, 149
Walton, William E.. 143
Wanger, Irving P., 28
Wanner, Ell wood J., 509
Watt, George W., 299
Weber, J. Howard, 173
Weigner, John K., 314
Weinberger, J. Shelly, 432
Wells. Mary M., 270
Wells, William J., 440
Wentz, Abram, 70



W<



135



West, Willi.-ini, 168
White, Daniel H., 483
Wiand. William H., 457
Wickersham, Frank, 466
Wieand, Charles' S., 408
Willauer, William, 384
Williams, Irvin C, 229
Williard, Philip, 456
Wise, Henry Y.. 426
Withers, M. Augustus, i8o
Wolford, Benjamin D,, 380
Wood, Charles S.. 513
Wood, David E., 430
Wood, Horace C, 159
Wood, John. 532
Wood, Richard F., 464
Woodward. S. B., 542



Yeager. Samuel S..
Yerger, Samuel M.



Ziegler. Elmer B..



MONTGOMERY COUNTY.



COLONEL JAMES BOYD. The bar of
every county in Pennsylvania has its oldest mem-
ber, the honor being handed down from one to
another as each in turn departs from the scene of
his earthly labors and triumphs. Colonel James
Boyd enjoys special distinction in this respect.
He is not only the nestor of the bar of Montgom-
ery county but he is the oldest attorney in active
practice at this time in the state of Pennsylvania.

James Boyd, grandfather of Colonel Boyd,
was a native of County Tyrone, Ireland. Emi-
grating to this country, he settled at Connellsville,
in the coke region of Pennsylvania.

Colonel Boyd is the son of Jeremiah and Eliz-
abeth (Long) Boyd. He was born in the old
homestead in Fayette county, Pennsylvania,
March 29, 1821. He was educated in the com-
mon schools of that vicinity in his earlier boy-
hood days, and when he was eighteen years of
age his father and the family removed to Ger-
mantown, in Philadelphia county, where the son
completed his education at the old academy con-
ducted by Professors Green, Smith and Collum.
The family then removed to Norristown, where
the question of a profession for the son arose, he
being upon the threshold of manhood. It was
the father's wish that his son should become a
druggist, and, without consulting with him, the
elder Boyd purchased a drugstore in Norristown
at the corner of Main and Cherry streets then
owned by Dr. Huddleson, an early practitioner of
medicine who is long since deceased. The son
entered the store and, after a trial of business for



three months, came to the conclusion that he was
not fitted by nature for that occupation, and so
disposed of it to another person. He then went to
his father, who was greatly displeased at the turn
of affairs, and informed him that he had decided
to go west. The mother of Colonel Boyd pre-
vailed on him, however, to remain at home.

At that time debates in the public school-
houses were very common, and young Boyd soon
became talked about for the forcible arguments
which he advanced for the side which he hap-
pened to take, whatever might be the subject of
dispute. Being six feet three inches in height
and endowed with a clear voice and pleasing
mode of address, he invariably commanded atten-
tion when he spoke. The father, hearing of the
success of his son's efforts in this line, at once
made the suggestion that he enter the legal pro-
fession through the usual course of preliminary
study. The idea was acceptable to the young
man and he acted upon it at once, entering the
office of Daniel H. Mulvany. a Norristown law-
yer of great learning and ability. In response to
a request of the elder Boyd, Mr. Mulvany en-
gaged in conversation with the son, the result of
the conference being that Mr. MuLvany accepted
him as a student, and he immediately started in
to read law.

Mr. Boyd applied himself to his legal studies
with his habitual earnestness and diligence and
he soon mastered the intricacies of the law, being
admitted to the bar August 16, 1842, by Judge
Fox. He then opened an office for himself in the



MONTGOMERY COUNTY.



same building in which he is now located, and
■waited, as is the custom, for his first client. ^Ir.
Boyd made a success for himself in his profes-
:sion from the start. Attorney Freedley, who soon
gained a lucrative practice, was thought to have
• done exceedingly well by securing four hundred
-dollars in fees for his first year's work, but Mr.
!Boyd outstripped all his competitors by his per-
severance and attention to business. His fees for



Online LibraryEllwood RobertsBiographical annals of Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, containing genealogical records of representative families, including many of the early settlers and biographical sketches of prominent citizens (Volume 1) → online text (page 1 of 98)