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

postmastership of the province of Pennsylvania. Governor Spotswood died at Annapolis, Maryland, June 7, 1840 [sic], while on his way to Central America to take charge, as Major General, of the British troops in that country. Dr. Edmund T. Spotswood is a son of Robert and Eliza L. (Henning) Spotswood, the father dying when he was a child of five years. His mother was a daughter of William Walter Henning, who was a prominent lawyer of Virginia, and an author of law books. The mother of our subject was a woman of culture and refinement, and possessed of high scholarly attainments. She was a poetess of high rank. After the death of Mr. Spotswood she married Rev. John F. Schermerhorn, of New York. They subsequently came to Indiana, and settled in Carroll County. The mother died at the home of Dr. Spotswood, at Perrysville, March 8, 1873, at the age of seventy-three years. Dr. Spotswood, the subject of this sketch, was fourteen years old when he accompanied his mother and stepfather to Carroll County, Indiana, and there he grew to manhood on their farm near the Tippecanoe River, receiving his literary education at home under the instruction of his mother. In 1852 he graduated from Rush Medical College, Chicago, Illinois, and the same year located at Perrysville, Vermillion County, where he has since resided. He was married May 17, 1853, to Miss Sarah Schermerhorn, a daughter of Rev. john F. Schermerhorn, of New York. Five children have been born to them, of whom only the two youngest survive -- Edwin, living in Terre Haute, and Mary, at home with her parents. Edith died at the age of twenty years; Welford at the age of four years, and Bernard aged seventeen years. Soon after the breaking out of the war of the Rebellion Dr. Spotswood extended his professional services to the Government. Immediately after the battle of Shiloh, in April, 1862, he, in company with Governor Morton and Miles Fletcher, the Superintendent of Public Instruction, started as a volunteer surgeon to the field of battle. On arriving at Evansville it was found that a large number of the wounded had been transferred to that place. He therefore accompanied such of the wounded as were able to be removed, to Indianapolis, where he was offered by the Governor any position as surgeon that was in his power to grant, but none being desirable, the Doctor returned to Perrysville. August 18, 1862, he was appointed Surgeon of the Seventy-first Indiana Infantry, and remained with the regiment about eighteen months, when he was compelled to resign on account of disease of the eyes acquired in the discharge of his official duties, and from this affliction he has never fully recovered. As soon as he had sufficiently recovered he resumed his medical practice at Perrysville, in which he is still engaged. He has long been a member of the American Medical Association, and in his profession ranks high. The doctor has always taken a deep interest in politics. He was elected to the Legislature as an anti-Nebraska Democrat. He was the first man to give his allegiance to the Republican party in Vermillion County, and affiliated with that party until 1876, when he became connected with the National Greenback party. He is now independent in his political views. He is a speaker of marked ability, and inherits much of his mother's poetical genius. In 1854 Dr. Spotswood was elected to the General Assembly of Indiana, and with one exception was the youngest member in the House of Representatives at the following session. While a member of the Legislature he introduced the following resolution, which was the first ever offered in the Indiana Legislature relative to


Biographical Sketches - 469

the establishment of State Normal Schools: "Resolved, That the committee on education be instructed to inquire into the expediency of establishing a State Normal School, in which persons who design to make teaching a profession shall receive instruction free of charge; Provided, they bind themselves to teach for a specified term of years within the State of Indiana; and also if it is deemed expedient to establish such schools, whether it would be practicable to establish it on the 'Manual Labor Plan,' so as to make it a self-supporting institution as near as possible, with leave to report by bill or otherwise." The doctor was also the first to agitate in the Legislature the establishment of a State Bureau. The subject of this sketch was reared in the Episcopal faith, but there being no church of that denomination in his neighborhood, he has affiliated with the Methodist Episcopal church. Genial in his manner, well informed on the general topics of the day, and possessed of fine conversational powers, the doctor is an interesting and instructive companion, and no man is better known or more highly respected throughout Vermillion County than he.



DAVID A. RANGER, one of the early settlers of Vermillion County, was born in Colerain, Massachusetts, May 20, 1827, a son of Moses and Jane (Smith) Ranger, both of whom were natives of the same State. Moses Ranger, Sr., and Orin Smith, grandfathers of our subject, were heroes of the Revolution, and Moses Ranger, Jr., was a soldier of the war of 1812. David A. Ranger left the old home in Massachusetts when sixteen years of age, and coming to Clinton, Vermillion County, Indiana, that year, 1843, he entered the employ of James McCulloch, general merchant and pork-packer. He was a faithful employe, and was often entrusted by his employer with large interests, making trips to the northwest in charge of stock for sale, and to the lower rivers in charge of pork and grain. He remained in the constant employ of Mr. McCulloch util the opening of the war for the Union, when his patriotism would not allow him to remain in the rear. His work became known, and he was commissioned First Lieutenant, and October 19, 1861, he was mustered with Company I, Forty-third Indiana Infantry. Their first effective service was at New Madrid, and they also participated in the engagements at Island No. 10, Tiptonville, Fort Pillow, and the capture of Memphis. July 4, 1863, they fought and repulsed General Price's army at Helena, Arkansas. The winter of 1863-'64 Lieutenant Ranger spent at home, recruiting for his company. March 15, 1864, with sixteen recruits, he joined his regiment, which was with General Steele at Little Rock, Arkansas. In the campaign of 1864, at Mark's Mill, Arkansas, Lieutenant Ranger was wounded in the left thigh, breaking the femur bone, and cutting the sciatic nerve, thus disabling him for further service, and of course necessitated his discharge. He now receives a pension of $24 per month. Never since his return from the army has he been able to resume his busy, active life of former years, but he has by no means been simply a looker-on. In 1865 he was elected to the office of magistrate, an office he held continuously until 1873, when he declined a re-election. He is now a member of the city council, where he has served many years. He is one of the oldest Masons in Vermillion County, and is at present secretary of Jerusalem Lodge, where he has been a honorable and useful member for over a third of a century.