Clark County, Ohio

History and Genealogy



Biographies

JOHN HUMPHREYS was a native of Ireland, Tyrone County, born March 6, 1764; emigrated to America in August, 1780, landing at Philadelphia, and, in October of the same year, he settled in Greenbrier County, Virginia. On the 25th of November, 1790, he was married, to Miss Jane Ward, whose father was killed in an engagement with the Indians at Point Pleasant, Va. In 1793, he removed from Virginia to Mason County, Kentucky, where he remained till April, 1799, when he came to Ohio and settled on Mad River, about two and a half miles north of Springfield, on the same section of land on which he died, his death occurring March 19, 1857, he being ninety-three years of age, and having been a citizen of Clark County fifty-eight years. He was one of the pioneers, and truly an invader of the forests of Clark County; was a valued and highly esteemed citizen, who contributed much by his virtues, as such, to edify the social interests of the community of which he was a member; but, what was better still, he was an earnest, consistent Christian, one whose memory will long be cherished by those who knew him. He professed religion in Ireland, and became a member of the Presbyterian Church in the year 1787, and in that church lived and died, having sustained the life of a professor for seventy years; was one of the two elected to the office of Elder upon the organization of the Presbyterian Church at Springfield, July 17, 1819, and duly ordained to that office August 19 of the same year. This office he continued to exercise until superannuation disabled him from performing its more active functions.

Though very aged, he was peculiarly cheerful and happy, possessing an unusual amount of vigor and vivacity, which he retained till death. He was the father of fourteen children, eleven of whom grew to maturity and became heads of families.

He left as survivors six sons and two daughters, fifty-five grandchildren and thirty-seven great-grandchildren — in all, one hundred descendants.

Mr. Humphreys was one of the parties who came here in 1799 with Simon Kenton and made the settlement on the forks of Mad River. (see "First White Men," in another part of this volume.) His grandson, John A. Humphreys, is now one of the business men of Springfield, and has the time-stained "church letter" which his grandfather brought from Ireland nearly one hundred years ago. This unpretentious little document is interesting as having been present during many a scene in the early days of the Western settlements, of which

"No record exists, and no whisper is breathed."


From History of Clark County, Ohio, W.H. Beers & Co. 1881. Page 342







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