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450 - History of Vermillion County Biographical and Historical Record of
Vermillion County, Indiana

the name of Downing & Hamilton. In the summer of 1887 the interest of Mr. Downing was bought by N. C. Anderson, when the firm name was changed to Hamilton & Anderson. In politics Mr. Hamilton is a Republican. He has served on the school board and in the city council with credit to himself and satisfaction to his constituents. He is a member of both the Masonic and Odd Fellows orders.



JOSEPHUS COLLETT (second), a prominent railroad manager and business man of Terre Haute, who, however, is still a voter in Vermillion County, was born in Eugene, this county, August 17, 1831. (For his parentage, see sketch of Stephen S. Collett, Sr.) He obtained his early education in a log-cabin school-house near his birth-place, and at the age of eighteen entered Wabash College; but before completing the full literary course he was obliged to abandon study on account of feeble health and a serious disease of the nerves of the eyes. A cure of the latter complaint for some time afterward seemed hopeless; but he finally recovered, when he resorted to agriculture and dealing in live stock, in both which branches of business he had great success. About 1869 he engaged in mercantile business at Newport, including pork-packing and dealing in grain. The pork and grain he shipped to New York and New Orleans, soon commanding a fine trade. Lack of transportation facilities then engaged his attention. After the failure of several previous attempts at securing railroads, he consulted Chauncey Rose, a worthy friend of the family through three generations, who zealously enlisted his sympathies with advice and money. The result was the building of the Evansville, Terre Haute & Chicago Railroad, running through the whole length of Vermillion County. Mr. Collett became president, and held that office until the road was leased to the Chicago & Eastern Illinois Railroad Company, who now operate it. Unlike other railways, this road was built at such close contract prices, without the intermediate profits of middle men and speculators, and its alignments and grades were so perfectly surveyed, that it has been classed as a model railroad in economy of cost and constructon. While nearly all new railroad enterprises of the country have passed through the hands of receivers and assignees, this road, under the management of Mr. Collett, -- who was not only its president but also its superintendent and treasurer, -- survived the crushing effects of the hard times of 1873-'79; and by universal consent the credit for this successful management is given to him. Even in the personal supervision of the track, he has never been afraid to ride upon a locomotive; and he made it a point to see every rail, tie and timber on his route once a month. He has also been engaged in many other railroad enterprises and large business ventures. He built the Otter Creek Valley Railroad through Vigo and Clay counties, the Genesee Valley Railroad in New York State, and in the construction of the Columbus & Sunday Creek Railroad, which opens up a new approach to the Hocking Valley coal region, was superintendent of the Nevada Central Railroad two years, is now manager of the Austin & Northwestern Railroad in Texas, and is profitably interested in the improvements and extensions that have given such growth to San Diego, California, the great sanitarium of the Pacific coast. He is also interested more or less in a number of mining and manufacturing enterprises, not only at Terre Haute, but also in other places in Indiana and at various points in the west. And he has been fortunate in nearly every


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enterprise that he has undertaken. In noticing his successful career any one will readily conclude that "good luck" is a fiction, and that good management and persistent effor[t] constitute the lever of victory. Mr. Collett is also known for his many acts of kindness and benevolence which he has performed in his peculiarly quiet manner. He is a leader in all public-spirited enterprises that come within his scope of action. On the death of Mr. Rose, so widely known for his munificence, it was found that Mr. Collett had been appointed one of the executors of his will. The latter was also elected one of the trustees of Rose Polytechnic Institute at Terre Haute, and is president of the board. In his political principles our subject is a Republican; in manner, quiet and unobtrusive; toward strangers, reticent; to friends, a genial and whole-souled companion. He has also a scientific taste, being particularly interested in geology and archaeology, and having one of the finest archaeological collections in the west, in some respects the best in the world, comprising over 1,000 of the finest specimens of the stone age.



GEORGE W. JACKSON, farmer and stock-raiser, resides on section 10, Vermillion Township, where he owns 300 acres of valuable land. He was born in Clermont County, Ohio, July 3, 1816, a son of Joseph and Mary (Newkirk) Jackson, his father a native of Virginia, of English descent, and his mother of Pennsylvania, of German descent. In 1832 his parents came to Indiana and located in Vermillion Township, Vermillion County, where the father died in 1847. They had a family of eight children, but two of whom are living -- George W. and Edward, of Dana. George W. Jackson was reared a farmer, an occupation he has thus far followed. His first start as a farmer for himself was on 100 acres, to which he has added until he now owns his present valuable farm. He was married in 1845 to Mary Driver, a native of Ohio, born in Parke County in 1822, a daughter of Abram and Mary (Rogers) Driver, early settlers of Vermillion County. Mr. and Mrs. Jackson have had five children -- Joseph married Mary Lorman, and has two children -- Fray and Free; Manford married Ella Firman; Sarah, wife of Silas V. Morgan, has two children -- Maude and Claude; Charles and Harry are at home. Mr. Jackson is a member of the Masonic fraternity. In politics he is a Democrat.



WILLIAM H. HOOD, was born in Eugene, Vermillion County, Indiana, February 23, 1840, a son of Durham Hood, who was a native of Tennessee, and an early settler of this county, coming here when the surrounding country was principally inhabited by Indians and wild animals. He followed flat-boating for many years, going to New Orleans more than twenty times, and in later years he worked at the blacksmith's trade. William H. Hood, the subject of this sketch, was brought up in Eugene, and was educated in the schools of this place. He enlisted in the late war in Company M, Second Colorado Cavalry. He was in the service two years, taking part in a number of engagements, all of them being with the Indians. He with his company was stationed at Fort Douglas, Utah, guarding the overland mail route and telegraph at that place, and were sent to arrest some Indians who had murdered some white people, and in their struggle sixty-seven men out of 140