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Jay County Indiana Biographies


Lewis STONE, a former member of the board of county commissioners of Jay county and one of the best known farmers and landowners of this county, proprietor of an excellent farm in Jefferson township, rural mail route No. 2 out of Redkey, where he makes his home, is a native son of Jay county, a member of one of the real pioneer families of this county, and has lived here all his life. Mr. STONE was born on a farm in Noble township on May 13, 1853, and is a son of William I. and Margaret (WARNOCK) STONE, natives of Ohio and both of whom had grown up amid pioneer conditions in this county. William I. STONE was born in Gallia county, Ohio, March 10) 1820, and was ten years of age when he came to Indiana with his parents, James and Sarah (DENNEY) STONE, the family settling in what later came to be organized as Noble township in this county. It was on September 10, 1830, that the STONE's came here and settled down on a woodland tract which James STONE had picked out as a place of residence. On November 9, 1832, he entered at the Government land office his claim to a quarter section of land covering that tract and obtained title to the same, thus having been the first man to enter land in what presently came to be organized as Jay county, this land at that time having been within the confines of Randolph county. During the year following James STONE secured title to an adjoining tract and it was not long until he had there a well developed farm, early coming to be recognized as one of the useful and influential pioneers of that neighborhood. James STONE and his wife were born in North Carolina, where they were married and where four of their twelve children were born. In 1819 they moved to Gallia county, Ohio, and there remained until they came to Indiana. On their pioneer farm in section 35 of Noble township they spent the remainder of their days, doing well their part in the development of proper social and economic conditions in the formative period of that now well established and prosperous community. James STONE was an energetic man and increased his land holdings until he was able to give to each of his children an "eighty" and at the time of his death was still the owner of 234 acres. His death occurred, in 1849. His wife had preceded him to the grave in the spring of 1848. William I. STONE, father of the subject of this sketch, was the fifth in order of birth of the twelve children of James STONE and wife and, as noted above, was but a boy when he came here with his parents in 1830. He grew to manhood on the pioneer home farm and on his twenty-fourth birthday, March 10, 1844, married Margaret WARNOCK, who also was born in Gallia county, Ohio, November 4, 1825, and who was thirteen years of age when she came with her parents, Francis and Sarah (CLINE) WARNOCK, to Jay county, the family settling on a woodland tract in section 27 of Noble township in 1838. Francis WARNOCK was a Virginian by birth and his wife was a native of Pennsylvania. They created a good home on the tract they had entered from the Government and there spent their last days, his death occurring in the summer of 1884, he then being eighty-four years of age, and hers, in the spring of 1886, she then being eighty-nine years of age. They were the parents of eight children and the WARNOCK connection in the present generation is a numerous one, even as is that of the STONE's. Some time after his marriage William I. STONE made his home on an ''eighty" in Noble township which his father had given him and made an excellent farm out of it. On that place he spent the rest of his life. His wife had long preceded him in death, her passing having occurred on March 16, 1866. They were the parents of fifteen children, of whom six are still living, the subject of this sketch and his sisters, Sarah, Rose, Nora, Rita and Angeline. Reared on the farm on which he was born in Noble township, Lewis STONE received his schooling in the neighborhood schools and continued as an assistant to his father in the labors of developing the home place until he was twenty-two years of age, after which he rented a farm in the neighborhood and began farming on his own account. The next year he married and established his home on that place, remaining there for twenty years, at the end of which time he bought an "eighty" in Jefferson township, the place on which he is now living, and has since resided there, he and his family being very comfortably situated. Since taking possession of that place Mr. STONE has added to his land holdings by the purchase of an adjoining "forty" and now has a well kept farm of 120 acres and a 'very well equipped farm plant. Mr. STONE is a Republican and has long been regarded as one of the leaders of that party in this county. In 1916 he was elected a member of the board of county commissioners from his district and served in that important capacity for four years, thus having been a member of the board during the time of the erection of the splendid new Jay county court house. In June, 1876, Lewis STONE was united in marriage to Mary J. SCOTT, who was born in Ohio and who died on March 12, 1880. To this union two daughters were born, namely: Bertha E., who married J. O. MANOR, of this county, and has two children, Jewel and Marjorie, and Mary J., who married William HOPPES, also a member of one of the pioneer families of this county, and has three children, Ralph, Mary H. and John.

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