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376 - History of Vermillion County Biographical and Historical Record of
Vermillion County, Indiana
ing him in May of the following year. They had a family of eight children -- one born in Pennsylvania, two in Ohio, and five in Vermillion County. Jane is now the wife of James Martin, of Grundy County, Illinois; Malinda is the widow of Solomon Stults, of Clinton Township; Delilah, deceased, was the wife of Joseph Reeder; Letitia, deceased, was the wife of Wesley Patton; John D. lives in Texas; Samuel F., and Margaret wife of William Kirkendall, live in Livingston County, Illinois. Joseph A. was the second child and eldest son, and after the death of his parents he kept the family together, until after his sisters were married. He then, April 2, 1848, married Drusilla Reeder, who was born in Vermillion Township, October 9, 1821, a daughter of Amos Reeder, one of the earliest pioneers of the county. Her mother died when she was a child, and her father February 24, 1836. Mr. and Mrs. Clover have had five children -- Jane (deceased wife of Garrett Ames); Isabell, Amos (deceased), William R., and James, of Clinton Township. Mr. Clover has a good property of 156 acres, which was formerly the home of his father, around which cling many fond memories. He abounds in reminiscences and anecdotes of pioneer life, and if anything of importance has been by him forgotten, his friends cannot be made to believe it. A practical joker, many are the pranks played by him, but none are ever wounded to the heart, and a visit to him is one long to be remembered. When fourteen years of age he killed a huge buck, and was afterward called the champion boy hunter. The chase was his delight, but when eighteen years old he shot his last deer. While hunting he had wasted his last shot on a very large buck, but succeeded in only wounding him. The deer could not run away, and the determined young hunter would not, but closing in upon him with his knife, fought it to the death, leaving the scene half naked, and wounded and torn in a way frightful to see. The deer was dead and beheaded, but complete recovery for the reserved best in the fight was a work of considerable time. When cured of his wounds he was cured of deer-hunting. The buck as it roamed at will, and the doe with the graceful fawn, were never more disturbed by him. In politics he is a Democrat. During the war he advocated the war measures, but since its close has been a man of peace.



HON. WILLIAM SKIDMORE, who was prominently identified with the growth and development of Vermillion County, Indiana during his life, was the first white child born in the county, a son of John Skidmore, the date of his birth being February 19, 1819. He was born with but one hand, his left hand, and one-third of that arm being gone. Yet in spite of this he was able to chop trees, and do other work required in the clearing and making of a farm, seemingly as well as any one. He was reared amid the wild surroundings of pioneer life, and during his early life he frequently hauled corn to the Wabash River, which he sold for ten cents a bushel, and has often taken apples to Chicago, Illinois. He was a self-made man in every sense of the word and became one of the most prominent men in the county where he has always lived. He was twice married, taking for his first wife Elizabeth Pearman, and of the three children born to them two are yet living -- Thomas J. and Mrs. Sarah J. Freeman. Mr. Skidmore was married a second time to a widow named Mrs. Amelia Helt, and to this union five children were born -- William Henry, George F. Mary E., Jasper F. and Caroline F. By her first marriage


Biographical Sketches - 377
Mrs. Skidmore has two children -- Mrs. Serena Depuy, and Mrs. Clarinda Garner. Mr. Skidmore filled many of the official trusts of his township and county, and twice represented the county in the State Legislature, in the years from 1866 to 1870. In the early history of the county he served as constable and justice of the peace. While holding the former office he was called one time by the citizens to assist in arresting a man whom they had chased into Mr. Swazey's cellar. Mr. Skidmore went into the cellar when he was shot by the man in the right arm below the elbow. Never heeding this he succeeded in arresting his man before he had time to do more harm, wresting from his grasp a second freshly-loaded pistol and holding until the citizens came to his help and bound their prisoner. He carried the bullet received there in his arm to his grave. He was a consistent Christian and an active worker in the Methodist church for many years. Even when a boy he would walk over the settlement and tell the people of the near approach of some religious meeting. He died in May, 1881, in the triumphant hope of a blessed immortality.



STEPHEN S. COLLETT, of Newport, is a representative of one of the earliest pioneer families of Vermillion County. He was born in Eugene in December, 1829, and Vermillion County has always been his home. In his youth he received good educational advantages, attending Wabash College three years. He has been an active business man, and for many years was one of the prominent merchants of Newport. He assisted in organizing the First National Bank of Newport, serving as its cashier some time. Since that time he has been connected with the banking interests of Newport, at present being general manager of Collett & Co.'s Bank. Mr. Collett married Miss Jennie Dunlap, a daughter of Alexander Dunlap, and they have four children, three sons and one daughter -- John cashier in Collett & Co's Bank; Samuel D., Fred D. and Eva, wife of Adam B. Littlepage, of Charleston, West Virginia. In politics the Colletts were old line Whigs in the days of that party, and later have affiliated with the Republican party. In religiion they are liberal in their views.



JAMES J. LEWIS, one of the old and highly esteemed pioneers of Highland Township, is a native of Maryland, born in Worcester County, January 1, 1805, a son of James and Sarah Lewis. He was early in life left an orphan, having no remembrance of his parents. After their death he was taken to the home of his grandfather Lewis, the grandfather dying when our subject was ten years of age. Two years later, when was about twelve years of age, he accompanied his grandmother and uncle to Pickaway County, Ohio, and here he had his first experience of frontier life. He grew to manhood in Pickaway County, and was there married to Miss Margaret King, a native of Ohio, whose parents removed to that State from Maryland in an early day. In October, 1830, accompanied by his father-in-law, Isaac King, he immigrated to Indiana, settling in Rush County, and two years later removed to Hancock County, where Mr. King continued to reside until his death. In November, 1837, Mr. Lewis came with his family to Vermillion County, and has since that date been a resident of Highland Township, and since March, 1851, he has resided on section