Mathew J. Tracy, a prominent citizen of Whiteland, and president of the Whiteland Fruit Packing Company, was born near Whiteland, January 6, 1832, and was the son of James and Mary (Tanner) Tracy, both of whom were natives of North Carolina. His father was born in the year 1783, and was the son of Nathaniel and Mary Tracy, the former of whom was a native of Maryland. His mother was born December 31, 1788, and was the daughter of Josiah and Martha (Wooten) Tanner, who were both natives of Virginia. Both of his grandfathers served in the Revolutionary War. His paternal grandfather, Nathaniel Tracy, served under the immediate command of Gen. George Washington. His maternal grandfather, Josiah Tanner, was wounded in the battle of King’s Mountain, in the month of September, 1780. Nathaniel Tracy was born in 1736. He was married to Mrs. Mary Hill, in 1765. He died in Kentucky in 1816. His wife, Mary Tracy, was born in 1734, and died in Kentucky in 1820. Josiah Tanner was born in 1744, and was married to Martha Wooten, in 1767. He died in Kentucky in 1818. His wife, Martha Tanner, was born in 1747, and died near Vernon, this state, in 1844. The father and mother of our subject were married in the State of Kentucky, in 1805. They removed from Henry County, Ky., to Johnson County, Ind., in 1827, and became early settlers of Pleasant Township. They located on a farm five miles north of Franklin, where the father died February 14, 1833, and where the subject of this sketch was born, and where his early boyhood was spent. James Tracy was a farmer by occupation, and a whig in politics. He was a soldier in the War of 1812. The mother of our subject died in Franklin Township in 1848. Our subject was the. youngest of fourteen children, seven sons and seven daughters. He received a fair knowledge of the ordinary branches of learning, and at the age of sixteen, he began to learn the carpenter’s trade. For a period of over thirty years, he was a contractor in that branch of mechanics. In connection with this pursuit, he controlled farming interests. His place of residence has always been in Pleasant Township. He resides at Whiteland, where he has a comfortable home. He helped to organize the Whiteland Fruit Packing Company in December, 1887, and besides being a stockholder, he was elected president of the company, which position he now fills. Mr. Tracy served in the War of the Rebellion from July 25, 1861, to September 1, 1864. He served in Company F, Third Indiana Cavalry. He participated in the battles of South Mountain, Antietam, Upperville, Fredericksburg and Gettysburg. He was also in the campaign of Gen. Grant, through the wilderness to Petersburg. In all, he served in fifty-two battles and skirmishes. Mr. Tracy has been twice married, the first being to Susan M. Smith, December 2, 1852, the second to Mary K. Varner, April 20, 1859. He had five children: Louis F., born November 10, 1853; James B., April 10, 1855; Richard M., March 7, 1860, deceased; Mathew V., February 23, 1862, deceased, and Clarence A., December 9, 1867. Mr. Tracy is a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church, the F. & A. M. and the G. A. R. lodges. He began life in very moderate circumstances, and he has become one of the well-to-do and influential men of the county.

Transcribed by Cheryl Zufall Parker

Banta, D. D. History of Johnson County, Indiana. Chicago, IL: Brant & Fuller, 1888, page 820.