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

an honorable discharge. He now receives a pension of $15 a month. In politics he affiliates with the Democratic party. He is a member of the Grand Army of the Republic, and is officer of the day in Owen Post, at Clinton.



JEREMIAH CONLEY, one of the popular young men of dana, was born in Edgar County, Illinois, December 23, 1861. His father, John Conley, was a native of County Waterford, Ireland, and in 1848 came to the United States and settled in Illinois, and in 1862 moved to Vermillion County, Indiana, locating at Montezuma, where he spent the rest of his days. Jeremiah Conley was reared in Montezuma, being only about a year old when his parents moved to Indiana. He was given good educational advantages, attending the schools of Montezuma, and thus became fitted to enter upon an active business life. In 1882 he located in Dana, where by his upright and honorable dealings and pleasant manners he has gained many friends. He is a member of the Catholic church and of the Hibernian Brotherhood.



GEORGE WELLS, deceased, was born in Sevier County, Tennessee, October 27, 1810, a son of Andrew and Eve (Houck) Wells, who were of English and German descent respectively. Our subject was reared to agricultural pursuits, and made that the principal vocation of his life. He received but limited educational advantages in the schools of his day, but close observation and contact with the world supplied to a large degree his lack of education. He was married in Sevier County, Tennessee, November 9, 1830, to Miss Sarah Earnest, a native of Greene County, Tennessee, born January 19, 1814, a daughter of Henry S. and Rachel (Lottspeech) Earnest. They left Tennessee in March 1831, each riding a horse and a third horse used as a pack horse, was loaded with household effects and wearing apparel, and in this manner they journeyed to Indiana, and settled in the then dense forest of Rush County, and in their home in that county all their children who are now living were born. In 1852 the family removed to Jasper County, Illinois, where they lived until coming to Clinton, Vermillion County, in 1866. After settling in Clinton Mr. Wells, owing to his failing health, led a comparatively retired life until his death. He died May 7, 1880. He was a member of the Methodist Episcopal church from childhood, and a consistent Christian. For a great many years he was a local preacher, and was always ready whenever and wherever he could aid in building up the Master's cause. Mrs. Wells who is yet a resident of Clinton is in good health, and bids fair to spend many more years of useful life. Mr. Wells held the office of magistrate for eight years, performing the duties of that office in an efficient and satisfactory manner. He was a strong anti-slavery man, and his hatred of slavery finally induced him to leave Tennessee. His father was one of the heroes in the Revolutionary war, from Virginia. Ten children were born to Mr. and Mrs. Wells -- Mrs. Martha Jane Birt, living in Clinton; Hannah E. died in infancy; Mrs. Louisa Mitchell lives in Parke County, this State; Mrs. Sarah Ann Walling died in Clinton township; Amos E., a farmer, living in Florida, Parke County, Indiana; Thomas B., resides in Clinton, was a soldier in the war of the Rebellion, serving three years in the Twenty-first Illinois Infantry, the regi-


Biographical Sketches - 489

ment first commanded by General Grant; William F. the youngest son. William F. Wells was born May 18, 1850, and has always lived with his parents. At the age of thirteen years he became the main reliance of his father, and as he advanced in years, he became the supporter of the family. He completed his education at Farmers Home Institute at Clinton, when nineteen years of age, and the three following winters taught school in Parke County. In 1872 he commenced working at the carpenter's trade, and while thus engaged received an injury to his right hand. He then sought lighter employment, and was engaged as clerk in the mercantile establishment of Whitcomb, Anderson & Co. He is now engaged as building contractor. In politics he is an ardent Republican, and prominent in all the local councils of his party. He is a member of the Masonic and Odd Fellows orders, and also belongs to the Knights of Labor.



JOHN W. REDMAN, furniture dealer and undertaker, Dana, is a native of Vermillion County, Indiana, born in Helt Township, January 25, 1855. His father, Wesley Redman, was a native of Virginia, coming to Vermillion County with his parents when a boy, where he lived until his death. Out subject was reared to agricultural pursuits, and received his education in the common-schools of his native county. He followed farming two years, and in July, 1876, he engaged in his present business, at Dana, where he has built up a good trade, becoming one of the leading business men of the place. Mr. Redman was married November 13, 1877, to Maria Taylor, a daughter of Samuel Taylor, one of the old and honored pioneers of the county, who is now deceased. Two children have been born to this union -- Charles (deceased) and Claude. Mr. Redman has held the office of postmaster of Dana since April 13, 1885, being one of the first appointed in Western Indiana under President Cleveland's administration. He is a member of the Odd Fellows order, in which he takes an active interest. Mrs. Redman is a worthy member of the Presbyterian church.



CLAUDE MATTHEWS, one of the leading agriculturists of Vermillion County, engaged in farming and stock-raising on section 19, Clinton Township, was born at Bethel, Bath County, Kentucky, December 14, 1845. His parents, Thomas A. and Eliza Ann (Fletcher) Matthews, were born and reared in the State of Kentucky, to which State the Matthews family removed from Maryland in an early day, the Fletcher family coming from Virginia. The parents of our subject died in Kentucky, the mother at the old home in March, 1846, aged twenty years, and the father at Covington, in 1885, aged sixty-six years. Claude, their only child, was given liberal educational advantages, and graduated at Center College, at Danville, Kentucky, in the class of 1867, and January 1, 1868, he was united in marriage to Miss Martha A. R. Whitcomb, born at Indianapolis July 1, 1847, the only child of Governor James Whitcomb, one of the prominent statesman [sic] of Indiana. Governor Whitcomb was born near Windsor, Vermont, in December, 1795, and when he was eleven years of age his father settled near Cincinnati, Ohio. At this time he began to show great fondness for study and books, and finally worked his way into Transylvania University, located at Lexington, Kentucky, and graduated from