Friday, January 20, 2006

Reeve Holland ~ Waynesville Carpenter & Builder ~ Sarah Bowman Holland ~ Devoted Methodist

The Reeve Holland house is still standing at
38 North Main Street in Waynesville, Ohio.
It was built in 1836.

Reeve Holland (January 24, 1808~May 31, 1893) was a carpenter and builder in Waynesville starting in 1835. He was the builder of the first Waynesville Episcopal Church building located on the southeast corner of North & Third Streets in 1840 (no longer extant, see photo below, a new building replaced it in 1915). Reeve and Sarah, his wife, were devoted Methodists and well loved in Waynesville. He retired from active carpentry work in 1863. Reeve Holland was also one of the first subscribers to Miami Cemetery and on the first Board of Trustees holding the office of treasurer of the cemetery.

The 1840 Waynesville Episcopal Methodist Church

Reeve was also a great benefactor to Waynesville. It was reported in the Miami-Gazette on May 3, 1876:

Thanks to Mr. Reeve Holland, the work of completing the two rows of shade trees between the bridges is nearly or perhaps quite accomplished. Mr. Holland procured over 50 trees the other day ~ going 8 miles into the Swamp for them and pays for them and setting them out, out of his private purse.

The above refers to Corwin Avenue which crosses from Corwin to Waynesville over the Little Miami River and the mill race.

Reeve was married to Sarah Bowman Holland (February 10, 1812 ~ August 26, 1907) on January 21, 1835. Reeve was one of the six children of James (May 1, 1775 ~ April 20, 1858) and Hannah Reeve Holland (September 10, 1779 ~ December 24, 1863).

James Holland's obituary was published in the Miami-Visitor newspaper on April 28th, 1858:

"DIED. ~ Of brocheal (?) affliction, on the 20th inst., in this place, JAMES HOLLAND, in the eighty-third year of his age. He was born May 1, 1775 in Burlington County, New Jersey, and emigrated to Ohio in 1817. His sickness was of but short duration and he seemed to be sensible that it was his last. He told his son he should not get well, but expressed a willingness with patience and Christian fortitude. Not a murmur fell from his lips. A few hours before he stepped into the cold waters of the Jordan of death, he said,"I am almost home." He was a loving husband, an affectionate father, a kind neighbor, and a humble Christian. Among his numerous surviving relatives, both in the East and West, is his widow ~ the companion of his youth, and comrade for more than fifty years, and six children. May they all meet in Heaven:

Servant of God, well done;
Thy glorious warriors' past;
The battles fought, the race is won;
And thou are crowned at last.

There is a biography of Reeve Holland in the 1882 Warren County History, p. 858:

"REEVE HOLLAND, retired carpenter and builder. Waynesville, was born in New Jersey, Jan. 24, 1808; is a son of James and Hannah (Reeves) Holland, natives of New Jersey. The grandparents were John and Jane Holland, natives of New Jersey; the ancestors being of Scotch-Irish descent. James and family emigrated to Ohio, and located near Waynesville in 1817, being among the early settlers of this county. He was a weaver by trade, and soon after he came here located in Waynesville, where he followed his trade the most of his life; he died in Waynesville about 1857, age 85 years; his wife died about 1861, age 85 years. They had ten children, six now survive ~

  • Reeve
  • Franklin
  • Wesley
  • Maria (now Mrs. Parker, residing at Camp Dennison)
  • Ruth Ann (now Mrs. Bodine, residing at Madisonville)
  • Emiline (now Mrs. Leatcham, residing in Iowa).

The subject of this sketch was but 9 years of age when their family came to this new county, and here he was raised and grew to manhood, fully accustomed to all the rough scenes of those early days; was married January 21, 1835, to Sarah, daughter of Abraham and Ellen Bowman, natives of Virginia, but who emigrated to Kentucky, where they resided till 1817, when they removed to Warren County, and locate near Waynesville, where they lived and ided; they had eleven children, five now survive ~

  • John, living in Indiana
  • Didema, now Widow Carr, living in Iowa
  • Sarah
  • Mary Ann, now Mrs. Retallick.

Mr. (Reeve) Holland and wife have had four children, all deceased; the youngest Joel Marshall, grew to manhood and gave promise of becoming a prominent man. During the administration of President Lincoln, he was appointed United States Mail Agent, on the C.C.R.R., which office he filled about one year; thence assumed the duties of the Distributing Department in the Post Office at Cincinnati, where, after a few months' service was prostrated with sickness and returned home, where he died, Sept. 26, 1862, aged about 24 years; his young promising life being thus early cut off.

Mr. (Reeve) Holland when sixteen years of age learned the carpenter trade and became one of the best and most prominent builders of that day; erecting a large number of the buildings in Waynesville and vicinity. In 1863, Mr. Holland retired from all active business, having acquired a good competency. He has resided on the property where he now lives for forty-five years; has erected a good substantial frame house, and has everything comfortable and convenient around him; where he and his companion have lived for almost half a century, and can now enjoy the fruits of their labors under their 'own wine and fig-tree.'"

Two of their children are buried next to Reeve and Sarah Holland in Miami Cemetery, section H (see below). Sarah's obituary only mentions two children. Other references refer to four children.

  • L. B. Holland (Nov. 22, 1835 ~ June 28, 1837)
  • Marshal J. Holland (May 9, 1838 ~ Sept. 26, 1862)

James and Hannah Holland, Reeve's parents, are also buried in the same family plot.

In 1835, Reeve and Sarah Bowman Holland celebrated their Golden Wedding. A long article in the Miami-Gazette, tells the story of their marriage day. As they were returning from their wedding, which took place on the Thomas Smith farm on Caesar's Creek (Sarah had been adopted into the Smith family), to Waynesville, Reeve received bad news.

"~ during the night the cabinet shop of John Loyd had burned down, and contents destroyed, among which were the carpenter tools of Mr. Holland, which constituted his entire stock in trade. But Mr. Holland says the thought that he possessed a brand new wife inspired him with courage , and he called on friends for help and got it, and to this day remembers gratefully David Evans and Joseph Chapman for their generosity in enabling him to again procure tools, with which he went to work with a will and cheered by the brave spirit of his wife, and seconded in all his efforts by her energy and thrift, he succeeded . . .

Mr. and Mrs. Holland went to house-keeping the Spring following their marriage in a house which occupied the same ground where they now live, and from there they have never moved, but have built and improved until they have all the comforts and conveniences they desire. They have seen their surroundings change from a sugar grove to a well improved town from their front window they now see a block of buildings where they once saw only trees and grass. They have witnessed the transition of their surroundings while they have moved on in the own tenor of their ways, quietly and unobtrusively yet factors in the progress of events. Mr. Holland has been the practical architect of many of the buildings in the town and Corwin and the surrounding country while "Auntie Holland" has been a "ministering angel" at many a bed of sichness and in many scenes of sorrow. . ."

There is a death notice of Sarah Holland's death in the Miami-Gazette on August 28, 1907. A lengthy obituary for "Aunt" Sarah Bowman Holland is found in the Miami-Gazette, August 28, 1907. It includes Rev. Phillip Trout's sermon at her funeral:


Sarah Bowman Holland was the daughter of Abram and Eleanor Bowman and was born at Flemingsburg, Kentucky, Feb. 10, 1812 and died at her home on Main Street, Aug. 26th, 1907 at the ripe old age of 95 years, 6 months and 16 days. When but a child she moved with her parents to Ohio and settled near Waynesville, on the Hall farm, now known as the O'Neall place. She was one of a family of ten children; all are now dead except one sister, Amelia Rogers, of Harveysburg, Ohio.

She was married to Reeve Holland, Jan. 21st, 1835 and went to housekeeping in a small house on Main Street, where they lived for a few weeks only, when Mr. Holland purchased the present home (in an unfinished condition.) They immediately moved into it and it has been her home from that day until the day of her death, a period of more than 72 years, and with her death the oldest home in Waynesville is broken up.

To Mr. & Mrs. Holland there were born two sons. "Together they mourned the loss of their first born Samuel Bowman, who died in 1837 a little less than 18 months old. Their second son Joel Marshall lived to comfort them and honor himself by an upright useful career of nearly 25 years, when he too passed to the great Beyond." The death of this son in the prime of his manhood was a great affliction but it was born with grace and patience.

Sister Holland united with the Waynesville Methodist Episcopal Church in the year 1836 under the pastorate of Rev. Wm. Sutton, and has been one of its most faithful and honored members to the time of her death being the church's oldest member having a continued membership for more than 70 years. For many years the prayer meetings of the Society were held in her home; also the class meeting, and once the Quarterly Conference of the Circuit was held in her home. In those early days the Quarterly Meeting brought men and women by the score from a distance to be entertained for two days or more. Her home was open to all, her hospitality knew no bounds. Many were made welcome and there were many times when as many as 30 or 35 persons were kept overnight. In those early days of large Circuits, when the preacher was away from his home most of the time, he always found welcome at her home, and for many years her home was the home of her pastor. Many of the early preachers of Methodism who afterward famous for their ability and preaching power, were entertained by her.

She has held a large place in this community for many years. she was a neighbor of the old type, ever ready to help to visit and care for the sick and all who were in distress. She was good to the poor and gave much to their relief. A long and noble life has closed. Her faithfulness to the church, her care for the sick, and her love for her fellows is something to be remembered and cherished by all who knew her. She had outlived her generation and was ready and waiting the coming of God's Chariot to take her Spirit home, and now that she has gone from us we can but say, 'The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away, blessed be the name of the Lord'. 'We shall meet again in the morning'. ~ Phillip Trout, Pastor.

The funeral of Mrs. Holland was held from her later residence Thursday afternoon at 1 o'clock conducted by Phillip Trout, her pastor, and Rev. Wm. Coffman of Sabina, a former pastor, and was attended by a large number of friends and relatives. Mrs. Holland will be greatly missed and although, she had lived to be almost a centenarian, her faculties were unusually acute and she took pride in being 'up and doing' so long as strength was given her. The body was laid to rest in Miami Cemetery to await the call on the last great day.

Holland Grave Plot in Miami Cemetery ~ Corwin, Ohio
Foreground ~ graves of James and Hannah Reeve Holland

Holland Grave Plot ~
Foreground ~Reeve and Sarah Bowman Holland

Thursday, January 19, 2006

Drs. Francis and Miriam Williamson ~ Physicians in Waynesville

Dr. Francis Williamson (November 14, 1812 ~ July 15, 1878) was a physician and surgeon, a learned, liberal minded and kindhearted man whose sudden death on July 15th, 1878 surprised his family and saddened the community. He was the husband of Dr. Miriam Peirce Williamson (May 18, 1822 ~ October 15, 1888), ten years his junior, who was also a physician with a distinguished career of her own.

Francis Williamson was a highly respected physician, an influential educator and a veteran of the Civil War. He had been a surgeon on the staff of Major-General Rosecrans. In early 1850 the Doctors Williamsons were practicing and living in Harveysburg, Ohio. By 1856, the Williamsons were living in Waynesville. They had six children together: Virginia, Richard, Agnes E., Francis (Frank) Fallis, Charles G. and Mary E. Williamson Cadwallader. See detailed references below.

A lengthy obituary (partially edited here) was printed in the Miami-Gazette on July 17th, 1878:

DEATH OF DR. FRANCIS WILLIAMSON. ~ Dr. Williamson died of paralysis at his home in Waynesville on Monday forenoon, July 15, 1878 after a very short illness. This announcement will be a shock to many friends at a distance who have long been familiar with the apparently robust form of the Doctor, and who had supposed he almost had the power to regulate the time of his own decease. But no one can at all times successfully resist the in roads of the destroyer, and the strongest man is often the one who falls pierced by the arrow of death. Dr. Williamson had been enjoying his usual health until Thursday evening last, when he was attacked by cholera morbus, after having been exercising in the hot son. He recovered, apparently, from this, only to be clasped more relentlessly in the terrible embrace of paralysis. Saturday evening his condition was so alarming that his wife was telegraphed for at Bellefontaine, and she came Sunday morning at 10, to find her husband fast relapsing into a comatose condition, which it seemed he had made a powerful effort to keep at bay until her arrival. After expressing his pleasure at seeing her, and making a few other remarks, he gradually relapsed into a stupor which became more and more heavy from that time until his death. At times he would appear conscious of what was passing around him, and would try to answer questions addressed to him, but he never thoroughly roused from the stupor into which the paralysis had thrown him, and so he passed away from earth to the realities of an unknown world. In his last moments he was surrounded by his sorrowing wife and daughters and other friends, but his two sons could not be summoned from their home in the far west in time to bid their kind and affectionate parent farewell.

Dr. Williamson was born on the 14th of November 1812 at Manney’s Neck, North Carolina, directly on the Virginia line. Indeed, we believe part of his father’s estate crossed the Virginia boundary. Dr. Williamson was justly proud of his place of nativity, and he was enthusiastic in his appreciation of the glories of the Old Dominion ~~ her distinguished sons, their chivalric deeds, and her classic ground, fit soil for the scholar, the philosopher and the gentleman. He was proud to have been born if not directly upon the sacred soil, at least within range of its classic atmosphere. Dr. Williamson’s father, Francis Williamson, was an extensive slaveholder at one time, and for twenty years a clergyman of the Christian denomination, a liberal thinker, and a progressionist in advance of his immediate contemporaries, for he liberated his slaves, sending some to Liberia while others remained in this country. At an early age the son was sent to school, and received the major part of his education under competent masters in Murfreesboro, North Carolina. He early cultivated a taste for literature. In 1836 he taught a classical school in Hanover County, Virginia, after which he read medicine with Dr. Trezvant at Jerusalem, Va. He afterwards attended lectures at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, and took the degree of M.D. in 1845. In 1837-8 he traveled over the western states, lecturing on one of his favorite themes, Phrenology. He also visited jails, lunatic asylums, and penitentiaries, traveling over twenty states of the Union, and occasionally delivering lectures before literary institutes.

His union with Miss Miriam Peirce, of Wilmington, Ohio, resulted in the birth of six children, three sons and three daughters. One of the sons and one of the daughters preceded their father to the Silent land, while the faithful, devoted wife, upon whom he relied to a great extent for his impulse of strength in his later years, and his surviving daughters and sons, feel keenly enough the irreparable loss of a husband and father whose genial nature, kind heart and strong individuality went far to make up the magnetic atmosphere of home. For the last quarter of a century or more, Dr. Williamson has been a successful practitioner of medicine and surgery in Warren County, most of that time in and around Waynesville. He was passionately devoted to his profession, and to the very last was a close student, keeping pace with the onward march of science and the unrestrainable progress of events . . .

Dr. Williamson was not a member of any church, although his predilections and tastes naturally caused him to gravitate towards the Protestant Episcopal, for whose history and liturgy he entertained the highest regard. He was thoroughly conversant with theology, and his veneration for the Christian religion was a natural outgrowth of his organization as well as sequence of his researches and experiences. In 1862 he entered into the exiting arena of the war, in the capacity of surgeon, and was at once promoted by Major-General Rosecrans to a surgeon on his own staff. Since the war, he has practiced his profession in his chosen home; leading a scholastic and domestic life suited to his nature~ fond of home, family, friends and books; and in their enjoyment he passed the early evening of his life . . . Dr. Williamson’s funeral will take place tomorrow forenoon at 10, from the family residence.

A biography of Dr. Francis Williamson can also be found in the 1882 History of Warren County, Ohio, pp. 887-888.

A brother of Dr. F. Williamson was a minister, Rev. James Williamson. According to the Miami-Gazette, December 2nd, 1874, The Rev. James Williamson, brother of Dr. F. Williamson, preached in the Christian Church last Sunday evening.” He was here in Waynesville visiting from Iowa (Miami-Gazette, November 4th, 1874).

Miriam Peirce Williamson was a member of Center Monthly Meeting of The Society of Friends in Clinton County, Ohio. She was disowned by the Quakers for her marriage contrary to discipline, out of unity. Francis was not a Quaker. On 7th mo. 18th day of 1850 she transferred her membership to Miami Monthly Meeting of The Society of Friends in Waynesville, Ohio. There she was disowned again on 9th mo 26th day 1855 (See, Encyclopedia of American Quaker Genealogy, Volume V, Ohio, pp. 142-143 and 543).

A "Miriam Wilkerson" is listed as a physician in Harveysburg on the 1856 Wall Map of Warren County. This is most likely Miriam Williamson.

The following comments about Miriam Williamson are taken from the biography of Dr. Francis Williamson in the 1882 Beer's History of Warren County, Ohio:

In December 1839 was celebrated his union with Miss Miriam Pierce, who was born in Wilmington, Ohio in 1822, she was a daughter of Richard and Mary (Fallis) Pierce, he a native of Wilmington, Del. and she of Virginia; the great-great-grandmother, Miriam Pierce, was a physican and nurse in the Revolutionary war, for which services she receive $700.00 per year. . .

His widow, Mrs. Williamson, is very pleasantly situated, having a beautiful home and residence, with the society of a loving daughter and son; she was a faithful and devoted wife, and upon whom the Doctor relied too a great extent for his impulses of strength in his later years; she is also a physican of thirty years' practice or more, and has a noted reputation over a large extent of country for her magnetic powers and skill in the treatment of disease, her field of practice reaching to the large cities of Dayton, Cincinnati, Richmond, Chicago and others."

Dr. Miriam Williamson is mentioned a number of times in the Miami-Gazette as traveling a great deal as a physican. For example:

  • It was reported in the Miami-Gazette, July 29th, 1874 that “Mrs. Dr. Williamson returned home last Wednesday from an extended professional tour.”
  • It was reported on December 9th, 1874 that, "Mrs. Dr. M. Williamson is visiting in Cleveland and Toledo."
In 1879 Miriam would be called to testify at the Willie Anderson triple murder inquest. She and her husband had dealt with a horrible tragedy of their own just six years earlier when their oldest son, Richard P. Williamson, 28 years of age, committed suicide on their farm by immolating himself. See, . People of Waynesville and Wayne Township considered this to be the most “sickening tragedy” ever to have happened in the area and the author of the obituary hoped that there would never be another horror “the like of which we hope it may never devolve upon us again to record.
The Williamsons are listed in the following Federal Censuses:
  • 1850 Federal Census, Harveysburg, Ohio, Warren County, M432_737, page 718, image 43.
  • 1860 Federal Census, Waynesville, Ohio, Warren County, M653_1047, page 82.
  • On the 1870 Federal Census, both Francis and Miriam are listed as physicans (1870 Federal Census; Wayne, Warren, Ohio, Roll: M593_1277, page: 510.
  • Widowed 57 year old Miriam Williamson is listed as "Doctress" living with two children: Agnes (30) and Charles (23). Her brother, James Peirce, her brother (50), is also living with her (1880 Federal Census, Waynesville, Warren, Ohio, Roll: T9_1075; page 482.4000; Enumeration District: 79.
Their daughter, Agnes Williamson, married John S. Wright (b. July 15th, 1850 ~ d. July 31, 1903) on December 26th, 1887 (The Descendants of Irish John Wright: An Irish Quaker Who Came to America Cir 1740 by George F. Wright, M. D. (Published by Author, 2000), p. 118. According to the 1880 Federal Census, John S. Wright was living with his father Oscar J. Wright, a retired miller, and his profession is listed as “miller” (Wayne Township, Warren Co., Ohio, Family History Library Film #1255075, N.A. film #T9-1075, page 465A). John S. Wright bought the Waynesville Mill in 1888 (see, Waynesville’s First 200 Years [The Waynesville Historical Society, 1997], pp. 234 and 236).

The Miami-Gazette reported on June 23rd, 1875 “Dr. Williamson left here Monday for a visit to this son Frank in Ellinwood, Kansas.” On July 14th, 1875, the newspaper published a long and erudite letter from Dr. Francis Williams while he was out visiting his son Frank in Ellinwood. He described his son’s business as follows: "The firm of Landis & Williamson is doing more business as merchants than any store in Waynesville. They have an area of country in this rich valley, 20 miles in diameter, and have monopolized the business, having the only large store here. They commenced business here 3 years since, in a room 10 feet square; now they have rooms as large as A. D. Cadwallader’s~~They are doing a safe business, and receive from one to 400 dollars daily in their sales.

According to Clarkson Butterworth in his Catalogue of the Members of Miami Monthly Meeting, 7th Month 1897: After the Friends of the late Cincinnati Monthly Meeting were attached to it, Mary E. Williamson (b. 1840.10.1) married Clarkson Cadwallader (b. 1833.1.1) and they had two daughters: Miriam Cadwallader (b. 1873.7.16) and Hallie A. Cadwallader (b. 1876.12.18). “Clarkson is brother of the afore mentioned Andrew W. Cadwallader, and his wife, Mary E. was the daughter of the late doctors, Francis and Miriam (Peirce) Williamson of Waynesville, Ohio . . . Clarkson and Mary live at his father’s (Jonah Cadwallader’s) old home on Todd’s Fork, two miles above Morrow.

Francis and Miriam Williamson are buried in Miami Cemetery, Section G. Richard P. Williamson (June 25th, 1846 – April 26th, 1873) is buried next to his parents in Miami Cemetery. He had joined the Society of Friends, a member of Miami Monthly Meeting of the Society of Friends in Waynesville, Ohio , but was disowned for a marriage contrary to Quaker discipline.

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Horace P. Keys ~ The Last of the Keys in Waynesville

Business Care of Horace P. Keys

This article is found in the Miami-Gazette, April 29, 1937:

This the first of a series of articles
which is being written by Grace L. Smith,
dealing with life, places, and events in
the history of Waynesville.

Many Years ago, about 1819, a father and mother, with their three children, emigrated from Pennsylvania to Ohio and located in Waynesville, Ohio to make their future home. This man was the grandfather (Isaac Keys) of Horace P. Keys, the subject of this sketch. In this span of 118 years, Waynesville has continuously known the Keys family.

Horace P. Keys was born in 1852 on the lot where he now lives ~ a period of 85 years. He was the son of Judge John W. and Sarah French Keys, a native of New Jersey. Judge John Keys had a mother of rare executive ability (Sarah Keys) and when left a widow in her new home with limited means, proved herelf amply equal to the situation in which most women would have failed. This same self reliance and courage, she handed down to her son, Judge Keys and he, in turn to his son, Horace.

Mr. Keys' father (Judge John W. Keys) was a man of great influence in the community. In 1839 he was honored with the office of Mayor of Waynesville. In 1842 he became Justice of the Peace, which office he filled for 30 years. In the Fall of 1872, he was elected Probate Judge of the county. This position he held until the year 1879. Mr. (John W.) Keys was also a cabinet maker and when Horace was but 16 years of age he entered into business with his father. After the death of his father, he continued on with the business and was an active businessman in Waynesville until a few years ago.

Mr.(Horace P.) Keys obtained his education in the Waynesville schools. None of the boys are left who with him swam in the old swimmin' hole or skated on the mill-race in the winter but Mr. Keys lives so much in the past that, to him those days are most real.

His hobby was watches and clocks and one incident he particularly remembers when the old family clock refused to run, he told his father he could fix it. His father told him to let it alone but one day his father left home, he took the clock to pieces and repaired it. Fortunately the clock ran ~ and continued to run and give good time until a short while ago.

Horace P. Keys was for years a very enthusiastic worker in the Knights of Pythias lodge. Always a bachelor, Mr. Keys and his sister, Miss Addie, made their home together until a few years ago when Miss Key's death separated them.

The home was destroyed in the fire of 1900 but a new home was erected on the same lot where since his birth, Mr. Keys has lived in his quiet unassuming way.

He says he has outlived his generation but his interests are all for Waynesville. His life has been spent here and Horace P. Keys is the last of the once noted Keys family and Waynesville's oldest businessman.

John W. Keys (Aug. 28,1814 - Dec. 23, 1882), his wife Sarah B. French Keys (April 17, 1812 - Mar. 22, 1894), and his three children, Mary G. Keys Jacobs (d. Apr. 24, 1876), Adaline B. Keys (1849-1931) and Horace P. Keys (1853-1942) are all buried in Miami Cemetery, Section F.

Also see the following for more information about the Keys family:

The Keys Brother that Went to California ~ Thomas J. Keys

This obituary of Thomas J. Keys, the brother of John W. Keys, Joseph G. Keys, and William Keys, was printed in the Miami-Gazette newspaper on January 30, 1895. It was first published in the Stockton (Cal.) Daily Independent:

Ex Senator Thomas J. Keys, died this morning at a little before 2 o'clock, after an illness of less than two days.

The deceased was born in Waynesville, Warren county, Ohio, January 16, 1823. He was reared amid the wild life of that region, then the far West, as a Quaker. His father died when the subject of this sketch was but 7 years of age, and at 15 the boy went to work as a blacksmith's apprentice. Six years later, having been an (apprentice) of the trade three or four years, he went to Vicksburg, Mississippi, where he worked at his trade several months and then went to Louisville, Kentucky. He started for California in 1850 with a party made up in that city. They went in a boat to Weston, Missouri, commencing the overland journey from that point. Upon reaching this state Mr. Keys went to mining at Hangtown, but soon gave it up and went to Sacramento where, failing to find work at his trade, he went to San Francisco. Meeting with little success there he made up a party of twenty-three men all went to Chinese Camp in Tuolumme county. A few months later Mr. Keys was at Fine Gold Gulch acting as the Alcalde (mayor) and Recorder. Becoming afflicted with the scurvy he took a mule team and started for San Francisco again and stopped at Stockton, where he went to work at his trade. Saving his wages he started a shop where Wolf's building now stands on Main street. He continued in the blacksmithing business in the city for eighteen years being located at various places in the town.

Mr. Keys became ( ? ) interested in teaming to the southern mines being, in partnership with William Hughes. When the mining boom suddenly burst he was left with sixty-seven head of miles on his hands with hay at $90 a ton and barley correspondingly high. He went to the lowlands and cut tules for the animals and then going to Stanislaus county commenced farming. He made $17,000 the first two years and lost $30,000 during the next four. When he left the ranch he had just $10. He then became interested in the manufacure of headers and threshers and in 1884 became steward of the Stockton Insane Asylum.

The deceased had led an active political life. He represented this county in the Assembly in 1855 and again in 1863. In 1872 he was elected as Senator from the District then composed of Stanislaus, Merced and Mariposa counties and was re-elected to serve a second term in 1874.

Mr. Keys was member of Charity Lodge, No. 61, I.O.O.F., and also of the San Joaquin Society of California Pioneers. He leaves a widow and several children, namely, Mrs. Oscar Atwood, Mrs. Reuter of the asylum, James C. Keys, the agent of the Southern Pacific depot in this city, John Milton, Thomas J., Jr. and Mrs. Eliza Stowell.

For more about the Keys family of Waynesville, Ohio see:

Friday, January 13, 2006

Joseph Galloway Keys ~ Quaker Cabinet Maker, Justice of the Peace, and President of the Western Star Publishing Co.

1903 Centennial Atlas of Warren County, Ohio

Joseph Galloway Keys was a brother of Judge John W. Keys and his partner in the cabinet ware business during the 1850s in Waynesville. The following biography is taken from the 1903 Centennial Atlas of Warren County, Ohio:

Joseph G. Keys, the subject of this sketch, was born in Waynesville, Warren County, Ohio on October 25, 1827. His father Isaac Keys, spent most of his life in Pennsylvania, but removed to this county in 1819, and settled in Waynesville. Squire Keys, as he is generally known, was one of the family of eight children. His brother, John, held the office of Probate Judge and other positions of trust in this county. His father died when he was but two and one-half years old, but from early boyhood he had displayed the characteristics that he still possesses, that of great energy coupled with strong will power. He secured only the limited education which the times afforded, but during his life has been a great reader, close observer and student, and in his early life, by close application and frugality, he laid the foundation, for his future success in life. He has always enjoyed the fullest confidence of his neighbors, and his mind being of a judicial turn, for twenty years, in an eminently satisfactory way, he acted as Justice of the Peace, and as a safe counsel in his neighborhood. He was married in 1857; two children, a son and a daughter, being born to the union, the son having died in early manhood. Squire Keys, at present, is the President of the Western Star Publishing Company, the oldest Republican paper in the county, and one of the oldest papers in the State. It has been his privilege and good fortune to travel considerably, and he has not only made visits to relatives in New Jersey, New York City and Philadelphia, but he has seen a goodly portion of the west, having spent considerable time in California and parts of the Southwest. Being an adept in the art of describing what he has seen, his friends are frequently entertained by accounts of his travels. In religious belief he is a Friend. He is one of Warren County's most substantial citizens, and, notwithstanding his years, is still active in affairs.

The father of Joseph G. Keys was Isaac Keys, b. June 16, 1787 ~ Jaunuary 25, 1830. His mother was Sarah Keys, b. June 4, 1788.

Joseph G. Keys (1827-1908) was married to Adeline Alice Crispin (1832-1917) on September 17, 1857 and they had two children, Charles L. (b. October 1, 1858 ~ d. June 14, 1864) and Clara E. (b. December 3,1865 ~ d. 1929). In the 1880 Federal Census Joseph G. Keys is listed as a Notary Public. In the 1850, 1860 and 1870 Census' he is listed as a merchant and cabinet maker. Joseph was in partnership with his brother John W. Keys in the Furniture Ware Room in Waynesville. For more information about this business during the 1850s see: WAYNESVILLE BUSINESSES & PROFESSIONS LISTED IN THE MIAMI VISITOR WEEKLY NEWSPAPER WITH FURTHER INFORMATION INCLUDED.

Adeline is listed as a seamstress in the 1860 Census.

Jospeh Galloway Keys departed this life on Monday April 27, 1908, aged 80 years, 6 months and 2 days. Adaline Alice Keys departed this life October 17 (Wed.) 1917, aged 85 years, 8 months and 27 days. This information is taken from the family Bible located in THE OHIOANA ROOM ~THE MARY L. COOK PUBLIC LIBRARY. Joseph, Adaline and their two children are buried in Section F of Miami Cemetery ~ Located in Corwin, Across the River from Waynesville .

I. H. Harris, Banker, Tells a Funny Story

The Harris Home, Store and Bank Building in Waynesville
(no longer extant)
Below is photograph of the staircase in the I.H. Harris Home

The following story told by Israel Hopkins Harris, Waynesville banker, was published in the Miami-Gazette on November 17, 1869:

BOARDING IT OUT ~ Our Banker, Mr. I. H. Harris, who is as fond of a good thing as anybody else, is responsible for the following amusing incident in financial operations.

A number of years ago, an Irishman, apparently a stranger in the neighborhood, called at the bank and taking a parcel from his pocket, proceeded to untie string after string and unfold wrapper after wrapper ~ a string almost to every fold ~ until he finally produced one hundred dollars, which he remarked he wished to leave there.

"For how long?" asked the banker. "For a year," carelessly replied the stranger; and forthwith a certificate of deposit was made out in his name and he departed.

Mr. Harris saw or heard nothing more of his Hiberian depositor until perhaps four years afterwards, when one day the identical individual appeared, and walking up to the counter, accosted the banker with, "Still doing business here, I see," "Yes."

The Irishman produced the same parcel, with the same original strings, from which he drew his certificate, and expressed the desire that the interest thereon should be calculated, which was done. To Mr. H.'s remark that he supposed the money was wanted now, his visitor replying in the negative, and said that instead he had some more money to deposit, which, of course, was not refused. The stranger also, from the same marvelous package of paper and strings, produced some certificates of deposit received from some private banking houses in Cincinnati, which in the panic of 1855 or thereabouts had failed; one of these he offered to sell to Mr. Harris, but was informed that "This house is not dealing in that kind of paper."

Again the man took his departure, and again nothing more was seen or heard of him for several years. ~ Whether he was dead or alive, it was impossible for the Waynesville bank to determine. But one day, not very long ago, the same singular being again entered the bank, with the former nonchalant greeting, "Still doing business here, I see."

The same roll of valuables were produced, and the business transacted as before, with the exception that this time the money deposited was taken out. Then the stranger remarked: "You remember the certificate I showed you on that broken bank when I was here the last time." "Yes," was the reply.

"Well, I had some fun over that" and he proceeded to relate how he had found out that the broken banker was doing business in New York; he went there, found that the late banker's residence was up the Hudson, and at once departed for that romantic region in pursuit of his game. He found the villa to be a beautiful place, and the wife of his debtor at home. But her husband, doing business in the city, was only at home in the evenings and on Sundays. Our hero told the lady what his business was, that he was not very well, unable to work, had spent all his money, and that he had come to try to collect the debt from her husband. He had beforehand procured the worst possible suit of clothes, and these, added to his dilapidated boots, gave him a distressed appearance. Saying to the lady that he would loaf around the village until evening, when he would call again, he turned away from the charming retreat of his debtor.

Punctually at the time, he knocked for admittance in the evening, and saw the man he wished to see. But of course the recognition was not mutual; neither could the banker remember that his visitor had ever deposited any money with him. He could not, however, deny the genuineness of the certificate but they had failed, were not doing banking business now, and were not paying any of those old claims ~ could do nothing for him at all.

"Well", said the cunning Irishman, "you see my condition; I am not able to work, have spent all my money, and I thought if you could not pay me, I'd come and board it out with you".

The host was dumb with astonishment, but could not well refuse, so our stranger entered and lodged for the night. In the morning he expressed his extreme gratification with everything belonging to the place, and said he should be perfectly happy there, he had no doubt. Here was a dilemma. The man of business took the train for New York as usual, leaving the stoical Irishman apparently settled and contented in his new quarters. He returned at night, however, with cash enough to pay his visitor's claim off.

Stairway in the I. H. Harris House

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Waynesville's First Fire Engine in the 1850s ~ "The Buckeye"

In an article written for the Miami-Gazette newspaper, Daniel R. Anderson remembers the village's first fire engine (Miami-Gazette, July 18, 1906):

"Early in the fifties of 1800, Waynesville had outgrown a very able Hook and Ladder Fire Co. by the infusion of some young Americans into the sphere of usefulness who clamored for a real fire engine, and to satisfy said lads and at the same time gain a sense of security a committee was appointed and authorized to go to Cincinnati and purchase a suitable fire extinguisher, which they were not long in doing.

Coming home they announced that they had bought the powerful 8 break, 32-man fire engine, 'Buckeye,' and that it would come up the Little Miami Railroad the next day. A Fire Company was organized that night, and my recollection is that it took in about all the available young men living at that time in the town. Mart Holland was elected engineer; John P. Kinney and myself assistant engineers in charge of the suction hose, Will Henley, Dave Parshall, Hen, Tom and Luke Manington had the care of the hose and all took turns at directing the nozzle. Everybody was in a fever of excitement for the arrival, which came and found everybody there at Corwin to give it a most generous welcome. The Buckeye was speedily unloaded and the big rope with which it was propelled uncoiled and fastened in place. Kinney and I were the ones at the tongue to guide the machine and everyone present who could took a hand at the rope, while others as willingly 'boosted', and away across the river bottom, up North Street to Main, to the Hammell House horse trough where the Buckeye took her first baptism. Some thoughtful person had pumped the water into the long trough till it was full, and we were not long in getting the suction hose into position, and then, oh ecstasy moment, what a cheer rent the air when our chief engineer shouted, 'Down on the breaks!'

Then we began to show evidence of a hastily, well drilled and willing Fire Co. The water in the trough began to disappear, soon to reappear in a hundred or more little streams from cracks in the box of the machine occasioned by standing long in inactivity and I remember that the leakage, cooled somewhat the enthusiasm of the crowd that was present in honor of the occasion and some truthful remarks were made about the 'old water pot' but we persisted till we 'swelled' her up and she began to as Dick Morrow (owner of the "Morrow House") who was a spectator said: Sq Sq Sq Sq-Squirt! ha! ha! Some how or other the nozzle got inclined in the direction of the line of fire we were under and right then and there gained our first put out. Right there too was demonstrated the total uselessness of the costly Buckeye Engine. I might call it Waynesville's first 'Gold Brick.'

There were no cisterns then and it would have been a physical impossibility to get sufficient water elsewhere. We pulled up and went on down Main street to the bridge over Camp Run which at that time had a deep hole of water and we tried that and succeeded in throwing water, considerably less than a good many feet. After exhausting that body of water we sought other imaginary fires to conquer and to show to the admiring citizens that it would work. We came back up Main street as far as the well at the Leak residence when someone suggested a 'try'. We got the suction hose down in to the well and the order, 'Down on the brakes' was given. At that time there was a barber shop in old 'broad house' kept by a colored man, Mr. Sam G. Smothers, who at the time was standing on the platform in front of his shop with one Mr. Buck Lynch, and they little thought of the attraction they were making or of the eccentricity of the machine, but they were not left long in ignorance for some one said there was a fire at the barber shop, and that was all that was required and whoever handled the nozzle done to a turn, one black and one brownie.

After that we took the Buckeye into one of the open sheds back of the Hammell House, where it rested in peace and quiet its natural life; never, I believe, was it called up for the real thing ~ to put out a fire. Nevertheless, Waynesville always had a bucket brigade, and I remember when I was broken out with measles, a fire that burned the second story of the Heighway property ~ John E. Cline and his mother occupied it then ~ was put out by the bucket brigade, and snow balls. There was a deep soft snow, and I never missed going to a fire and I threw snow balls with others to beat the band, and went back home and to bed, for only ten weeks, so that was stamped in the goods and that was in '53 or '54."

The "Buckeye" was probably built at the newly formed A.B. & E. Latta "Buckeye Works" in Cincinnati.
  • Mart Holland is Joel Marshal Holland the son of Reeve Holland, a carpenter in Waynesville. The family is listed int eh 1850 Census.
  • According to the 1850 Census David Parshall was living with the Morris Cook household. Morris Cook was a tailor in Waynesville and owned a clothing shop.
  • Will Henley is one of the sons of Moses Henley, a tanner in Waynesville according to the 1850 Census.
  • Hen, Tom and Luke (Lewis) Manington were the sons of Joseph Manington, a shoemaker, of Corwin, according to the same census.

For more information about Daniel R. Anderson see, Triple Murder in Waynesville ~ Willie Anderson.


Friday, January 06, 2006

More Reminiscences of D. R. Anderson ~ Businesses in Waynesville

The editor of the Miami~Gazette warns that Dan's memory had failed him a bit while writing these letters to the Editor. None-the-less, Dan's memories open a window onto the world of the 1850s in Waynesville, Ohio.

Miami-Gazette (June 2, 1915):

Now let us get back to Water Street and Main. The Macy livery stable was once an enterprising wagon and carriage making shop carried on by Dan Wharton, and was later a broom factory, which was moved to the house used as a currying establishment now owned by Park Leak. On up Water street to where you turn to go to the mill, was a little brick balcksmith shop run by a whole lot of Jones' many, many years ago (There is a Isaac Jones listed as a blacksmith in the 1850 Census). On the corner Main street and Mill road John A. Irwin built a brewery and also ran a broom making machine in a part of the building. I remember re-roofing the building for A. Aman, and in one afternoon drank thirty-two glasses og beer, and nailed on a whille lot of shingles and never feel off once. Am glad to say that since 1880, all intoxicants have been "but out" from my bill of fair.

And there was a cooper shop on the alley that is on the west side of the home of Geo. Mills, about the fifth lot, and was carried on by John Rhoades, a brother of the late Rebecca J. Sides. Down on the alley where the telephone exchange is, T. B. McComas had a blacksmith shop, which later on gave place to a cracker factory projected by one Lamar, who also at one time ran the Telegraph Mill. Job Rogers had a harness shop in the south room where Dr. Sherwood now lives. And Gideon and Alf Leak ran a wet and dry grocery, and ice cream parlor where Mrs. Beckett lives, and later they ran that bussiness in the property now owned by Park Leak and sister, Ella McKinsey (see, LEAK ~ McKINSEY Families of Waynesville, Ohio ).

Hats Made in Waynesville: Not many of the Gazette readers ever heard of hats being made in Waynesvile. Well, they were and embraced all kinds, from silk stove pipes to ones of fur or wool. Oscar J. Wright was the hatter, and the little shop became later the tailor shop of T. T. Dodson, and mayor's office. Then as a grocery and post office of Jonas Janney, Jr., next by Charles Clements and than by Geo W. Hawke. Where the Gazette holds forth, was a store owneed by S. S. Haines and Ben Evans, Brother of Joel and then by Thomas L. Allen, afterward by Jacob Randall.

Now up street again where Zimmerman's store is, was a meat market owned by Spence Borden, or Emmor Baily Sr., and upstairs was the tailor shop of Clayton Haynes, and was also mayor's office. And then came the store of Joseph Rogers & Son. Then it became a grocery by E. R. Printz, succeeded by Jas. Morgan, and then by Jas. Dinwiddie. Where Mahlon Ridge had his barber shop was a grocery, John Barnhart, proprietor. After which it became a "bum" old saloon, and then to where a man could get a decent shave. Where Mahlon Ridge now lives, lived the granfather of Mrs. Frank Gallaher and uncle of Horace and Addie Keys, and he was a tailor. On up the street where the residence of Chas. Cornell is, was the thtrailor shop of Morris Cook, father of Will Cook and step-grandfather of Frank Parshall. There is where Billy King learned the trade. Next door up street was a watch and clock estblishment carried on by Mr. Thomas. Across the street was the dental office of S. J. Way, and down street to the little brick building that was a jewelry store, and back of it Reeve Holland had a carpenter shop (Reeve Holland is listed in the 1850 Census as a carpenter).

On the Harris Corner (southeast corner of Main & North Streets) was a dry goods sotre kept by James Harris, the father of I. H. Harris, from that to a bank by Stokes & Harris. Jarvis Stokes, father of Frank Stokes, and I.H. Harris. Across the street on the corner was a drug store operated by Dr. Treahorn. Upstairs was the "Armory" of the old Continental Co., of Waynesville. The store became the property of A. E. Merritt and Henry W. Printz. Thent he two other Printz's, Edwin, Dock and E. R. Printz became possessors. While they held sway it was a "free and easy" ~ very wet!

Over at the old tavern stand of "Dick" Morrow was a well known hostelry (See, The Old Miami House in Waynesville, Ohio). The room on the corner where the bar was kept by ~~was turned into a store and owned by A. D. and Chas. Cadwallader, then by Chas. Cadwallader. After his death it became the private bank of S. S. Haines. There all of you fellows put your money where it would do the most good for that mythical farce of a railroad of narrow guage and an inclination to run into the ground as has most, if not all, of its projectors. Has everybody become reconciled to doing without a realroad since automobiles became the go ~ and a war yet in Europe?

Thursday, January 05, 2006

More Memories of Businesses in Waynesville by Daniel R. Anderson

The editor of the Miami~Gazette warns that Dan's memory had failed him a bit while writing these letters to the Editor. None-the-less, Dan's memories open a window onto the world of the 1850s in Waynesville, Ohio

Dan Anderson remember more businesses on Main Street in Waynesville:
Miami-Gazette (May 26, 1915):
Let us now get back to Main street. About where the residence of the late Is Wright stands, was a foundry and machine shop carried on by R. O. Crispin. Next to it was the steam saw mill of Press Ellis, and a little farther up the pike was a slaughter house built and run by John Barnhart; and I was a butcher with him tow or three years. Down on lower Third street, about where Lizzie Joy lives, was a shoe shop, and carpet loom of Old Jimmy Mills . . . On the corner of High and Third streets lived David Brown, a carpenter and builder. On Main street south of the old Henderson home was a livery stable owned by old Sammy Rogers, father of Job and "Bill" Rogers, and next to it was a little one story brick building. Right across the street from the little brick in the long frame building was one of the town halls. Exhibitions were given there, and the Cadets of Temperance used it for a hall and later they used a small room over the sales room of John W. Key's Firm, where also, the "Squire" dispensed mericful justice, and plenty of it . . .

On the corner where North street turns north, was a nursery owned by one Bobby Brainard, a bachelor, English or Scotch, who made his home with Robert Hurd, a tailor, who lived where Asher Brown lived, and carried on shop ther. Where Will White lives, there was a chiarmaker by name of Adams, grandfather of Marion Adams, who bottomed chairs with rushes from down where Oakdale Park is and his work was so well done that some of the chairs are good yet after sixty or more years.

Boyhood Memories of Daniel R. Anderson

The editor of the Miami~Gazette warns that Dan's memory had failed him a bit while writing these letters to the Editor. None-the-less, Dan's memories open a window onto the world of the 1850s in Waynesville, Ohio.

Dan Anderson remembers the intersection of Main & Miami Streets and physicians in the village:
Miami-Gazette (April 14, 1915):
Boyhood Memories: It may be you remember the first glass of soda water that you ever drank, you bought with a "gitney" (5 cents) at the ice cream parlor of John Collins, on the corner next to the Hammell House (J. & S. Collins Grocery & Bakery). Collins ran a bakery, and had two children. Ask Mrs. Samuel Rogers. The girl married Si Roberts and now lives in St. Peter, Minn; has a daughter, Alice Stark. Si (Josiah?) Roberts, was a brother of J. W. Roberts , who at one time owner and publisher of the Miami-visitor, now the Miami-Gazette, and who married a daughter of Isaac Fairholm, who lived in the brick house opposite the Hammel House, and was a blacksmith. His shop was where is now the residence of my old friend and comrade M. T. Liddy.

Then there was the big, jolly old Sam Barnhart, who was stepfather to Eliza Bunting, and lived ont he corner where Wm. Phillips now lives and then the array of physicians let me name a few: Drs. Elias and Sylvanus Fisher (see, The Waynesville Academy) , whose house later occupied by Dr. Williamson (see, Suicide in Waynesville ~ Richard P. Williamson). A little farther up main street, Dr. McGuire, then where lives Mrs. Matthews, lived Dr. Robb and two Dr. Smizers and about where the Township House stands lived Dr. McReynolds and on North street where lives George Mills, lived the peer of them all, Dr. William H. Anderson, (Dan's father) who was generous with "tannin" and did not wait for us~thats me to get sick, either.

Dan remembers the "Public Square" and the pork houses in Waynesville and Corwin:
Miami-Gazette (May 12, 1915):
Waynesville had a public square, Main and High Streets. On the east side of Main Street was a hay scale, blacksmith shop and wagon making shop. They were all on the south east corner of the square. Now where A. B. Sides is located, was the pork house of James Harris, father of the late I. H. Harris. The slaughter house was up the first creek above Waynesville a hundred yards or so, and another slaughter house stood on the east side of the railroad above Corwin, and the packing was done in the old railroad freight house in Corwin. Caleb Small did the rendering at Corwin and there was no objection made, as to number of tenderloins us kids would have dangling at the end of any kind of an old string till they were done to a frazzle. There kids, is something you've missed! Wish I had a chance this minute ~ Um! Um!

Can well remember the coming to this country of that sturdy and hardy set of Englishmen: John Hawke, Thos. Hawke and Phillip Hawke. It is to Phillip that I now contribute a few reminiscences of him. He was about my size, and large for his age; and healthy, oh my! He took a job at the Corwin pork house as a cleaver hand. Up to that time, it had always required two for the work. I was there when trouble started, and to try him on, a hog that weighed 500 pounds was rolled on the block, and Phillip, now a full fledged yankee, was on his job, and ready. He had his steel cleaver heated to nearly a cherry red and with one mighty blow, bisected that 500 pound hog at the ears, and then one more blow, and the shoulders were ready to split apart. And all went well from that on with Phillip. Thos. Southern and Wm. Retallick did the salting in the cellar. Jerry Powell, Andy's daddy, did the brine work. Oscar Wright, A. D. Cadwallader, Jonas McKay, Emmor Bailey, and other bought the hogs.

Dan remembers some of the factories and William S. Keys, who was a brother of Judge John W. Keys and owner of the Waynesville Lumber Yard. William Keys served in the War of the Rebellion, and died at Chattanooga, Tenn., in January, 1864, leaving a wife and seven children.
Miami-Gazette (May 12, 1915):
Then getting back to shops and factories, saw mills and such, we go down the Lebanon pike to the three bridges, only two of which are left, and within a hundred yards of the bridge as you turn to go down the river road, was a saw mill, then turning up the creek towards Ridgeville we will find on the farm of the late E. A. Brown, a saw mill, that finished its career under the care of Wm. Keys, an uncle of Addie B. and Horace Keys (two children of John W. Keys), who then lived in the house he built for himself, now occupied by Ed Janney. I worked for "Bill" and we hauled the logs to the mill to be sawed by oxen. Bill was a soldier, and died in Chattanooga, Tenn. His captain mistreated him shamefully, and let me record a curse to that captain, dead or alive, to what he did to Bill. I saw him a very few days before he died, and he told me how sick he was, and that he wanted to go home. I told him that I would try and get him furloughed home. I was at that time commissary of the Gen. Field hospital, Army of the Cumberland, and on speaking terms with "Pap" Thomas, Commanding Army of the Cumberland, and he promised to sign a furlough, and I hurried to break the good news to Bill, at his company quarters, where I had first seen him (and he was on guard at that time) only to learn he had been taken to a hospital where I went on a gallop. I found him~ but he was dead. Bill was peculiar in some ways, and his own wost enemy, but a good soldier and he had the biggest heart in him any man could carry and here's to our everlasting friendship ~ Bill. 'Good bye!

Dan Anderson remembers Isaac E. Keys, John W. Keys and Joseph G. Keys:
Miami-Gazette (May 19th, 1915):
Back in town already, John W. and Jos. G. Keys carried on a furniture factory and made coffins in the midst of the square in a little brick building on the lot where now lives Horace and Addie B. Keys, which was later extended on the north side, from the alley running north and south to Main street, and was a good place to go to hear funny stories. Here's one, and if not funny, is peculiar and I was present when it all happened. Dave Lashley had just been married and was buying his furniture outfit of Squire John Key's and had a big wagon loaded and remarked that was all when John says,"You've got no cradle!" "No," says Dave, and said he "might as well take one now as any time," and it was put on top of the load and carried triumpantly up Main street in broad daylight.

Up on the alley was a hearse house, two stories high. I. E. Keys shoe making in the second story.


A "Young American Guard" in Waynesville in the 1850s

In his old age, Daniel R. Anderson wrote a series of articles published in the Miami-Gazette newspaper of Waynesville which are his memories of old Waynesville from when he was a boy. One of his memories is about the "war spirit" in Waynesville in the early 1850s:

"There was a war spirit in Waynesville, early in the fifties. A company of young men 16 to 20 years of age, organized into a company of young American Guards and I remember only a few of the 50 in that company. Capt. J. M. Robb who had been in the Mexican War (1846-1848) was captain. Jos. G. Keys was first lieutenant and the rank and file was Dan R. Anderson, John P. Kinney, Will Henley, Geo. Phillips, Jasper McComas, Hen Spangler, Alf Hammell, Clarence McReynolds, and others."

Daniel Anderson continues telling a story about the Waynesville American Guards and Prof. William Henry Venable:

"Prof. Venable's Debut: About the year '53 or '54 a Sunday school picnic was held up the Xenia pike in the grove of David Chenoweth. The young American Guards were escort on that occasion and I have a fervid recollection of the debut of that Prince of all fellows of which Warren County has been embellished, Sir, Prof. W. H. H. Venable. I can see him now in my minds eye as his father assisted him onto one of the tables and that was perhaps his maiden effort, and it was well received and applauded." (Both quotes: Miami-Visitor, April 14, 1915.)
  • Captain J. M. Robb was a dentist in Waynesville famous for his "Hippodrome Liniment".
  • Joseph G. Keys was the brother of John W. Keys. They were business partners in the "Furniture Ware Rooms" located on the west side of Main Street.
  • Alfred Hammell was the son of Enoch Hammell, the owner of the Hammell House.
  • Clarence McReynolds was the son of Dr. John McReynolds of Waynesville.
  • Jasper McComas was a son of Waynesville blacksmith, Thomas M. Mc Comas. Thomas B. McComas was raised in Maryland. In 1827 he and his brother moved to Xenia, Greene County, Ohio where he was a blacksmith with Samuel Harry. Then he moved to Waynesville where he was a journeyman for a while before setting up his own successful business. He died December 27, 1878. Another one of his 15 children, Acquilla, will become a grocer in Waynesville.
  • Will Henley was the son of Moses Henley, a tanner in Waynesville, and brother to John Wesley Henley who published the Miami-Visitor newspaper for two years.
  • For more information about the Anderson family see, Triple Murder in Waynesville ~ Willie Anderson.

Power over the local state militias has traditionally been divided between the Federal government and the states. The state of Ohio had the right to appoint officers and supervise the training of the enrolled men. The Federal government reserved the right of imposing standards, although this could become rather lax on the local level. All males between 18 and 45 were required to enroll in the state militia. Another option was to form volunteer companies of men who would buy their own uniforms and equipment. The Federal government set the standard for these companies, too, and also provide a small amount of money for weapons and ammunition. Local companies, such as the "Young American Guard" in Waynesville, were usually urban or town oriented and could also be a group of men sharing the same ethnicity.