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Clement Evard, a prosperous farmer of Jackson township, was born in Switzerland, March 2, 1845. He came with his parents to Allen county, Ind., and first settled in Milan township, coming to Jackson township November 8, 1873, where he now resides. His father, David, born October, 1806, died in America, March 29, 1883/ The mother, Mary A., was born November 24, 1803. Mr. Evard married Eliza J. Sapping, born November 8, 1868. Her father Jacob, was born in Pennsylvania, March 20, 1817, and the mother Mary, was born in Allen county, Ind., in 1833 and died in Whitley county. To Mr. and Mrs. Evard have been born six children: Margaret, August 5, 1869; Minnie M., September 17, 1870; Celia, July 17, 1873; David M., January 17, 1877; Ida G., July 25, 1880; Hattie E., February 16, 1886. Margaret married Benjamin Mooney November 22, 1888. Mr. Evard enlisted in Company H, One Hundred and Forty-second Indiana volunteers, April 12, 1865, and was discharged July 14, 1865. He and wife are members of the Methodist Episcopal church.
Notable among the settlers of Jackson township who have caused the forests to disappear before their laborious efforts, is John Taylor, who was born December 15, 1839, in Auglaize county, Ohio. His father, William, and mother, Jane, her maiden name being Smith, are natives of Ohio. Mr. Taylor was married to Elizabeth Williams, April 16, 1865. Her parents were from Ohio; the father, John S., was born July 31, 1820, and the mother, May 20, 1825. Mr. Williams was a lawyer and practiced in the Auglaize county courts, and was at one time elected probate judge. To Mr. and Mrs. Taylor have been born six children, all living: Edward, January 19, 1866; Charles, February 28, 1868; John, November 17, 1869; Arthur, December 27, 1871; Ibby, November 2, 1875; David, April 14, 1883. Mr. Taylor's father died when he was young, and being the eldest of the children, the burdens fell upon him. He has followed farming with the exception of three years and three months, when he was in the military service of the United States, in the Seventy-first Ohio. He participated in the battles of Shiloh, Atlanta and Nashville. Mr. and Mrs. Taylor are both consistent members of the Methodist church.
It is believed that the first permanent settlement within the limits of this township was made by Jared Whitney and his family. He came in May, 1833, and remained during the summer on the Maumee river, but in the fall took possession of a tract on section 7, which he afterward brought into cultivation. In the summer of the same year, Wilhelm and Henry Tuschknagen and families settled, and became industrious and esteemed citizens. But several years later, one of the sons, while at Fort Wayne, took a piece of cloth from a store and was arrested. One of the neighbors becoming bail, the culprit was released, and returned home, but a few days before the day of trial disappeared forever. The
disgrace so affected the family that they were broken in spirit, and the ostracism by the community affected their reason. It is related that the elder men were to be heard night after night breaking stone in the woods, for the purpose, they said, of building a temple. The last survivor was a mental wreck, was known as the "Prophet," and fancied he was divinely directed in every action. During 1^33 there also came Christian Wolf, Joseph Grunauer, Mr. Blackmore, a transient resident, William Henderson, Simon Rogers. The latter sold his clearing to Eben Burgess, who took possession in 1834. On this farm the first frame house was erected by one Blakely, and was used as a barn by Mr. Burgess, who erected the first brick house in 1837. William Henderson was married in March, 1835, to Elizabeth Rogers, the first ceremony of the kind in the 'township. In 1835 the first death occurred, that of a child of Mr'. Blackmore. In 1834 a settlement was made by Aretas Powers, who was born in New York in 1800. He brought with him his wife, Sarah Stilson, to whom he was married in 1828, and their children afterward increased in number to eleven. James Post came also in 1834, but was not a permanent settler. A sad event of that period was the loss of a little son of the latter. He strayed into the woods, and his body was found by a party of neighbors many days later in Seven Mile creek. Mr. Powers was the first justice of the peace elected in 1840. In 1835 or 1836, Henry Castleman settled near the center of the township. They were famous hunters, and were known to bring at one load to Fort Wayne, on a home-made sled, forty saddles of venison. Henry Castleman is said to have killed 1,678 deer and twenty-three bears. A celebrated event of the early time was the clearing up the Sugar ridge or Vanwert road. On New Year's eve, 1837, about twenty residents went to a point near New Haven, provided with cooking utensils as well as axes, and began the work. The road had been merely a foot path before, but this winter's campaign made it a well-defined highway.
Alanson Whitney opened the first store in 1850, his stock being a barrel of whiskey and a keg of tobacco, but this was soon enlarged and he did a prosperous business. When the Vanwert road was opened Henry Castleman opened a tavern, and prospered until the day of railroad communication. During this period there was a postoffice on the road, kept by Socrates Bacon subsequent to 1850. The first saw-mill was built by Green & Burgess, near the center of the township, and subsequently a run of buhrs was put in, and these two mills were operated for many years. In May, 1851, the village of Besancon was platted by Peter F. Beugnot.
The quiet little village of Maples had its origin in the lumbering business. Here Lewis S. Maples came in 1852 from western Ohio, to take charge of an engine for a saw-mill. August 12, 1853, the town plat was made by O. Bird and J. Bowser, and Mr. Maples made an addition in 1873. Saw-milling, stave manufacture, and the like have been the leading industries. In 1880 the population was 139. Stores are kept by Adam Crawford and Nicholas Ladig, the former of whom is postmaster.
Lewis S. Maples, for whom the village was named, was born in Greene county, Penn., September 20, 1825. He engaged in the manufacture of staves and heading in 1872, but since 1876 has been farming. He was married to Deborah «Ritter in 1853, and they have six children living.
Among the earliest settlers in Jefferson township was Joseph Gronauer, a native of Germany who immigrated in about 1828, and first settled in Virginia. In 1832, putting all his possessions in a one-horse wagon, he set out for Indiana, and established a new home on the Maumee, in the northwest part of Jefferson township. The government had not then,surveyed the land, and he was allowed when the lands were opened to settlers, $300 for the improvements he had made. He died November 16, 1872. His wife was a native of Germany, who came to this country in 1834, and srie is sti^ n.v'ng, having made her home on the old homestead for forty-one years. She well remembers the old times, when wolves and Indians were numerous, and the great event when the last Indians were taken west from Logansport. Their son, George F. Gronauer, was born April 28, 1851, in Jefferson township, and is one of the leading citizens. He was married October 5, 1875, to Caroline Muhlfeith, whose parents came from Germany about 1840. The mother died September 19, 1883, but the father is still living. Five children have been born to Mr. and Mrs. Gronauer: Norah, July 12, 1876; Clara, June 22, 1879; Lizzie, March 1, 1882; Julien, September 19, 1884, and an infant March 20, 1889. The remains of the old road and bridges built by Anthony Wayne are to be seen on Mr. Gronauer's farm, also many relics of his expedition have been found.
Edward Harper was born in Jefferson township, March 26, 1856. His grandfather, John Harper, died aged eighty-four. The dates of birth and decease of his grandmother, Elizabeth Harper, are unknown. His grandfather, John Hunter, on his mother's side, died aged eightyfour, and his grandmother, Rebecca McMullin, died at the age of ninetytwo years. Edward's father, William Harper, was born in Tyrone county, Ireland, March 10, 1810. He emigrated to this country at the age of twenty-one years, and finally settled in Jefferson township, in 1836. He married Mary Hunter, who was born in Erie county, Penn., December 25, 1812, and they had eight sons and four daughters. Edward's childhood, youth and manhood were passed in Jefferson township. From his early youth he seemed not to care for toys, but greatly enjoyed a hammer and a few nails. The advantages of his district school were for him of short duration. Four of his brothers having entered the army, the responsibilities of home duties rested upon him. He first devoted his attention to farming in which he was successful, but his youthful proclivities now began to manifest themselves so that by his ingenuity and close observation, he soon became an excellent framer. He possesses wisdom and tact in financial matters, and takes good care of his own interests, being a wise manager in business, yet