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William McLellan is a prosperous farmer living eight miles north of Kearney in Divide township. He was born November 18, 1837, at Washington C. H., Fayette county, Ohio, and is the sixth in a family of twelve children born to William S. and Margaret (Wright ) McLellan, who were natives of New England; the former, a farmer by occupation, was born in at Portland, Me., in 1795; the latter was born in 1810. The other members of the paternal family are as follows--Maria L., Mary J., Eliza, Alfred, Theodore, Joseph, Elizabeth E., Maggie, Horton H., Oscar W. and Frank. His paternal grandfather, Joseph McLellan, was of Scotch-Irish descent and was born April 18, 1762. He was captain of a boat on the Atlantic ocean, and the chart which he used has been handed down and is now in the possession of our subject. William in his early days attended school in the country until a rudimentary education was obtained, after which he attended the high school in Washington C. H. He engaged in farming until the war broke out, and on April 20, 1861, he responded to his country's call, enlisting in the Twenty second regiment, Ohio volunteers. He accompanied his regiment to Parkerburgh and Clarksburgh, Va., and was mustered out at the expiration of his time, August 19, 1861, at Athens, Ohio. He returned home and remained two months and then re-enlisted October 19, as a musician, with the same regiment, playing first baritone. The first engagement of note under this enlistment was the battle of Shiloh, where, on account of many of the soldiers being sick, the band boys left their horns in their tents and took guns, participating throughout the fight. In pursuance of an order sent out from head-quarters to discharge all band men who desired to go, he was mustered out April 24, 1862. He returned home for a short time, but the old war fever was too strong within him for resistance, and he accordingly volunteered August 9, 1862, and continued in the service until the close of the war. He did guard duty at Washington city, was with Kilpatrick on his raid to Richmond, and in all participated in seventeen battles, including the battles of Gettysburg, Brandy station (at which battle he had his horse shot from under him) and many others of note. He was discharged June 13, 1865.

Mr. McLellan was married August 26, 1862, just before returning to the war the third time, to Mary E. Saunders, which union has resulted in the birth of eleven children, as follows--William, born December 28, 1863; Nella, born August 5, 1865; Charles, January 28, 1867; Etta, January 31, 1869; Harry, March 13, 1871; Edwin, February 13, 1873; Alvora, January 19, 1875; Maggie, March 4, 1878; Horton, December 8, 1883; Oscar, September 13, 1885; and Grace, born September 18, 1887.

Mr. and Mrs. McLellan continued to reside in Fayette county, Ohio, until March, 1880, when they came West and located on their present farm in Divide township, which they have greatly improved, having built a neat frame dwelling and put one hundred and thirty acres of their quarter section under cultivation. They are both active members of the Methodist church, he having been one of the trustees of the first organization in their community. Mr. McLellan, politically, is a staunch republican, and is now serving as the clerk of his town.

From BIOGRAPHICAL SOUVENIR of the Counties of Buffalo, Kearney, and Phelps in Nebraska, Chicago, F.A. Battey and Company, 1890.
Submitted by Ann Cherry

Buffalo County NEGenWeb Project