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Jay County Indiana Biographies

Arthur A. GRISELL, one of the best known and most substantial farmers and land owners of Jay county, now living practically retired on his well-kept farm in Penn township, is a member of one of the real pioneer families of this county, his grandfather, Samuel GRISELL, who was of Alsatian descent and Colonial stock, having settled here as early as 1804, while the territory now included in Jay county was still a part of Randolph county. When Samuel GRISELL came here from Columbiana county, Ohio with his family there were but three other white families living in what is now Penn township, this county. He erected the first mill in the township, at the point which afterward became the townsite of Pennville, old Camden, and was in many ways regarded as one of the most influential factors in the development of the new country. Samuel GRISELL was born on August 22, 1790, and was thus in his vigorous prime when he came to this county in 1834. In Columbiana county, Ohio, he had married Anna WHITACRE, who was born in Virginia on July 29, 1793, a daughter of Joseph and Jane (SCOTT) WHITACRE, and she was an able helpmate to him in the labors attendant upon the establishment of a new home in the wilderness. Samuel GRISELL died in this county on August 8, 1864, and his widow survived until October 12, 1869. They were married on July 8, 1813, and were the parents of twelve children, so that the GRISELL connection in the present generation is a no inconsiderable one. Of these children, Albert GRISELL, former treasurer of Jay county and father of the subject of this sketch, was born in Columbiana county, Ohio, July 10, 1831, and was thus three years of age when he came with his parents to the then wilderness in this part of Indiana. As he grew up he did his share of development work and became one of the leading citizens of the county, serving in 1876-78 as treasurer of the county and in other ways contributing to the public service. On July 3, 1853, Albert GRISELL married Rachel Ann STARBUCK, who was born in Logan county, Ohio, February 23, 1835, and who was a daughter of Joseph and Grace ( LUPTON ) STARBUCK. She came to Jay county when nine years of age with the family of her maternal grandfather, Solomon LUPTON, and was reared here and when eighteen years of age married Albert GRISELL. To that union were born seven children, of whom three are now living, the subject of this sketch and his two sisters, Grace and Mrs. Mary H. WOODRUFF. Arthur A. GRISELL was born on the old home farm in Penn township on March 18, 1859, and was reared there. He was about seventeen years of age when his father was elected county treasurer and moved with his family to Portland, and he thus completed his schooling in the Portland public schools. He married when twenty-two years of age, and for two or three years thereafter lived on a rented farm, but in 1884 he bought the place on which he is now living in Penn township and has ever since resided there, gradually increasing his acreage until he has acquired an excellent farm of 120 acres, on which he has two sets of buildings, all the improvements on the place having been made by himself. Of late years Mr. GRISELL has been living practically retired from the active labors of the farm, but continues to maintain his home on the place which has so long been endeared to him by ties of intimate association. He and his family are very comfortably situated and have ever taken an active and interested part in the community's general social activities. The GRISELL's are Republicans and are members of the Methodist church, of which Mr. GRISELL is one of the trustees. Mr. GRISELL is past chancellor commander of the Pennville lodge of the Knights of Pythias. It was in 1881 that Arthur A. GRISELL was united in marriage to Mary SOMERS, who also was born in this county, daughter of Aaron L.. and Margaret L. (FIELDS) SOMERS, and to this union two sons have been born, Elbert Lynn GRISELL, who married Emily DOUNLEY and has two children, Lynn, a graduate of the United States Military Academy at West Point and now a captain in the regular army, and Don; and Edward R. GRISELL, traveling auditor for the John Hancock Life Insurance Company for the southern Indiana district, who married Greta LEWIS and has one child, a son, Ted Lewis.

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