James H. Vandivier, a farmer of Johnson County, was born in Mercer County, Ky., February 13, 1823, and is the son of Peter and Sarah (Garshwiler) Vandivier. His father was a native of New Jersey, born October 15, 1787, and died in this county in 1866. The mother was born in Kentucky, October 17, 1788, and died in this country June 29, 1863. This marriage was consummated in Kentucky, and they came to this country in 1826, and located on Section 25, Union Township, and lived here until their deaths. Their marriage was blessed by the following children: Madison, deceased, Eliza, Strather, John, deceased, William T., Susann, Peter, Joseph S., James H., Polly, Isaac, Henry, deceased, Jefferson and Harriet. The father was a farmer by occupation, and was a pioneer of the county. He was a member of the Christian Church. Mrs. Vandivier was a member of the same church. They came to Indiana in an early day. They endured many hardships, but lived to an advanced age, and were respected by all who knew them. Their son, James, who is the subject of this sketch, was but three years old when he was brought to this county. His youth was spent on a farm. In his days of schooling he had but few advantages to gain an education, and what he did get was gained by attending a few short terms of subscription schools. He is a man of strong judgment and possessed of a keen observation, and a store of useful and practical knowledge, which has characterized his life with utility and practicability. He remained under the parental roof until he was twenty-five years of age. November 16, 1848, he was united in marriage with Mary Ann Buckner, daughter of Avery and Margaret (Sturgeon) Buckner. Mrs. Vandivier was born in Kentucky, May 29, 1832. Her parents came to this county about 1836, and reared her in this county. The above marriage was blessed by the following births: John W., Samantha, Avery M., Joseph H., William A., Sarah M., James Thomas, and Minnie Bell. Soon after his marriage, Mr. Vandivier settled down on the place where he now lives, and has since been actively engaged in farming. He began in life with but ordinary advantages for gaining wealth, but by energy and perseverance, together with honesty and integrity, he has not only become one of the most prosperous men of the county, but a well respected one as well. He has reared a large family for whom he has cared both educationally and financially. He is one of the most extensive land holders of the county, now owning 820 acres of land in the county. He has filled several positions of honor and trust, and at present is one of the county commissioners, being elected by a majority of over 3,000 as the democratic candidate, in 1886.

Transcribed by Cheryl Zufall Parker

Banta, D. D. History of Johnson County, Indiana. Chicago, IL: Brant & Fuller, 1888, page 881.