James H. Banta, a prosperous farmer of Clark Township, was born January 8, 1835. He is a son of Abraham and Emma (Ramsdall) Banta, the father was a son of Peter A. and Margaret (Voris) Banta, and was born about 1807, and died about 1872; the latter was born in 1813, and died in 1857. Our subject was reared on the farm which was entered by his father, about 1830. He received a common school education. At the age of twenty-one years, he began life for himself, his vocation being that of a farmer. In 1861, when our Union was threatened with dissolution, and in answer to his country’s call for 300,000 troops, he shouldered his musket and marched to the front. He enlisted on the 14th day of July, 1861, at Indianapolis, under Capt. Wood’s Company F, Eighteenth Indiana Infantry, and served until the 12th day of May, 1864, when he received an honorable discharge at Baton Rouge. March 4, 1868, he was united in marriage to Mary A. Brooks, daughter of Henry and Lydia (Barnes) Brooks. This union was blessed with the following children: Carl E., born December 14, 1870; Minnie M., born January 26, 1873, deceased. The mother of these children was born May 30, 1849, departed this life, August 26, 1873. He was married October 19, 1875, to Mary M. Mangun, a daughter of Benedict W. and Jane (Wiley) Mangun; the former was born April 29, 1818, the latter was born June 11, 1820, died January 16, 1873. To this union the following children were born: Arthur M., born December 31, 1877; Emma J., deceased, born January 2, 1880; William A., born April 16, 1882; Mary C., deceased, born August 30, 1884; Edith, born October 30, 1885. The mother of these children was born October 25, 1841. She is a member of the Presbyterian Church. Mr. Banta is a member of the James Wagner G. A. R. Post, at Greenwood, Ind. He is a republican, and served as trustee of his township, two years, and it is a democratic township. He now owns 160 acres of well-improved land in Clark Township.

Transcribed by Cheryl Zufall Parker

Banta, D. D. History of Johnson County, Indiana. Chicago, IL: Brant & Fuller, 1888, page 475.