W. E. Rudy

 W. E. Rudy, the veteran automobile dealer of Lima,
was born in Allen County 38 years ago and has been a resident of the
city of Lima for the past 15 years.  Mr. Rudy established a new line of
business for Lima when he opened his garage and entered into the sale of
automobiles, bringing the first machine to this county.  He carries, in
addition, a complete line of bicycle sundries and a good line of
bicycles.
    Mr. Rudy grew to manhood in Allen County and enjoyed the advantage
of a college education, having taken the scientific course in the Ohio
Normal University at Ada, from which he was graduated.  Two years of
practical work in teaching followed, when he became a "knight of the
grip" and for five years was salesman for a bicycle company, traveling
over Ohio, Pennsylvania, and a part of New York in his Easter territory,
and through Kansas, Nebraska and Oklahoma in the West.  In 1890 he
settled in Lima and engaged in retailing automobiles and bicycles, his
business growing to such an extent that it necessitated enlarged
quarters, when he erected his garage, a large building 100 by 5 feet,
which is located on Elizabeth street, near the post office a splendid
site and a splendid business.
    Mr. Rudy was married in 1892 to Anna Doolittle, of Pennsylvania, by
whom he has two bright children Mildred and Marcus.  Mr. Rudy is a
member of the Methodist Episcopal Church while his wife is a
Presbyterian.  He was a member of the Lima City Council for two years
and is always ready to lend his hearty support to any movement of
utilitarian import.  Fraternally, he is connected with the Elks, the Red
Men and the Odd Fellows.
 

Joseph C. Ross

Joseph C. Ross, superintendent of the handle works of
the O. B. Selfridge Company, at Lima, was born in Chautauqua County, New
York, in 1848, and is a son of Gilbert Ross, who is a resident of
Meadville, Pennsylvania, and is in his 85th year.  The family moved to
Erie County, Pennsylvania, when our subject was seven years old, and he
received his education in the common schools of that county.  He was
reared on a farm, remaining there until he was 21 when he struck out for
himself.  When our subject was 16 years of age, his father was drafted
into the army and young Ross took his place, serving three months, until
the close of the war, in Company A, 102nd Reg., Pennsylvania Vol. Inf.,
and taking part in the campaigns of West Virginia.
    In 1870 young Ross went to McKean, Pennsylvania, where he obtained
work in the handle factory of F. Lamson, with whom he remained three or
four years.  He then went to Corry, Pennsylvania, and for about seven
years was employed in the handle factory at that place.  Removing from
there to Ohio, he entered the factory of Lamson & Cleveland at Leipsic.
Four and a half years later he moved to Edgerton, Ohio, and after three
years at that place accepted a position in the factory of Selfridge,
Woods & Company, of Lima, where he is still employed.  Upon the death of
Mr. Selfridge, about 17 years ago, Mr. Ross was made superintendent of
the works, and has given to the work his most careful and conscientious
efforts.
    In 1870 Mr. Ross was married to Mary E. Cleveland, a daughter of the
late Pliny Cleveland.  They have no children of their own, but have an
adopted daughter, Nellie Ross, whom they are giving the advantages of a
good home and parental love.  They are members of the Market Street
Presbyterian Church.  Mr. Ross was a member of the Edgerton School Board
while residing there; but has devoted his entire attention to his
business since coming to Lima.  He is a member of Mart Armstrong Post,
No. 202 G. A. R., and of Solar Lodge, No. 783, I. O. O. F.

 

John Deppler

 John Deppler, well-known both as a contractor and
farmer of Richland Township, is a Swiss by birth and an American by long
residence and sympathies.  He was born October 10, 1847, in Tagerfelten,
Canton Bern, Switzerland.  His parents were John and Fannie (Shifferly)
Deppler, both of whom were natives of Bern.   The father was a
contractor and met his death a short time before the birth of our
subject by the caving-in of a sand-bank.  He was the father of two
children, Elizabeth, who died in Paulding County, Ohio, and John.  The
mother married a second time, her second husband being Rudolph Smith,
who brought the family to America in 1853.  After remaining in Wayne
County, Ohio, for a couple of years, they came to Allen County and
settled in Richland township.  Later they moved to Paulding County,
Ohio, where the mother died in her 63rd year.  By her second marriage
she had two daughters and one son, all of whom have passed to the life
beyond.
    John Deppler resided in Allen County about 10 years, being 18 or 19
of age when he went with his parents to Paulding County.  He was a
carpenter and worked at his craft after returning to Allen County in
1869.  Later he also engaged in contracting and continued this business
until about five years ago, when he gave up the more arduous work and
now enjoys the comforts of his pleasant home in well-earned ease.  In
1889 Mr. Deppler purchased a small farm of 60 acres, to which he
afterwards added an adjoining tract of 85 acres, the land lying in
sections 11 and 12, Richland Township.  This he has converted into a
most desirable home by erecting a good comfortable house and remodeling
and building the out buildings to suit his needs.  he carries on general
farming, the work having been in charge of his son while he was engaged
in carpentering and contracting.
     Mr. Deppler has been twice married. His first wife was Mary Huber,
daughter of Charles and Nancy Huber of Richland township.  She left two
sons Albert, of Bluffton, and Eli.  In 1888, Mr. Deppler was married to
his present wife, who was Anna P. Garber, a native of Wayne County,
Ohio.   Her parents Peter and Anna (Shiverly) Garber, were natives of
Switzerland.  Peter Garber died in Wayne County.  After his death, his
widow and daughter came to Allen County where the latter met and married
John Deppler.  Three children, all sons, have been born to them namely:
John Calvin, who lives at home and looks after the farm; and Daniel
Walter and Harry Edison, who are attending school.  Mr. Deppler is a
Democrat in Politics.  In religion he is a consistent member of the
Mennonite Church.
 

Henry Van Gunten

Henry Van Gunten, who was elected sheriff of Allen
County in November, 1905, is the proprietor of the large piano and organ
house which is located at the southwest corner of the Public Square in
Lima.  Here  he carries a complete line of instruments of the best and
most approved makes, and does a volume of business  which not only
embraces Lima, but extends far out into the surrounding country.  He was
born July 29, 1864, in Richland township, Allen County, Ohio, and is a
son of John and Anna (Snitter) Van Gunten.  His father has been a
resident of this county since 1834 and is a prosperous farmer of
Richland Township.
    Henry Van Gunten was one of eight children and his early life was
spent on his father's farm. In winter he attended school and assisted
with the farming in summer.  He learned harness- making and worked at
this trade of about four years, until 1889, when he came to Lima and
engaged in the sale of musical instruments, in which business he has
been eminently successful.  Determined to conduct a business to satisfy
the most critical taste, he has stocked his store with only the most
desirable instruments and those that he feels assured will meet the
requirements of his patron.  He has the satisfaction of knowing that
when a really superior article is wanted it is pretty sure to be Van
Gunten who makes the sale. Assisting him in his work is C. F. Woolery,
who has charge of the piano tuning.
    Mr. Van Gunten married Amelia Beeler daughter of the late David
Beeler, of this county, and they are the parents of three bright boys
Avery L., Verrel D.  and Loen F.  The family are members of the German
Reformed Church.  Mr. Van Gunten was elected sheriff of Allen County of
the Demcratic ticket on November, 1905.   He is a member of the Improved
Order of Red Men, Knights of the Maccabees, Independent Order of Odd
Fellows and Eagles.
 

W. C. Peltier

W. C. Peltier, whose farm of 160 acres is situated in
section 4,  Marion township, is now numbered with the retired residents
of this locality, who have earned the esteem and confidence of their
fellow-citizens, together with a comfortable amount of this world's
goods.  Mr. Peltier was born August 16, 1837, in Sugar Creek township
Allen County, Ohio, and is a grandson of Anthony Peltier and a son of
James and Jane (Clark) Peltier.
   Anthony Peltier was born in Canada, but was of French extraction.
He located at Detroit, Michigan, in early manhood and became a
successful Indian trader, continuing his residence there during the War
of 1812.  Conditions having changed on the frontier there, he removed to
Maumee City, which is now denominated South Toledo, and there he
continued trading with the Indians up to the time of his death.  He was
trusted by them and dealt honestly, being a devoted member of the
Catholic Church.
    James Peltier, son of Anthony and father of our subject, was born at
Detroit, Michigan, in August, 1806, and died at Bluffton, Ohio, at the
age of 83 years.  He spoke both the French and English languages,
understood two of three of the Indian dialects, and became a trader like
his father.  In 1830, at Findlay, Ohio, he married Jane Clark, who was a
daughter of John and Sarah Clark.  They had these children: Louisa, wife
of S. J. Brand, of Bluffton; William C., of Marion Township; John W., of
Lima; Enos, of Marion Township; Joseph O., deceased; and Charles W., of
Michigan.  Four of his sons served in Ohio regiments during the Civil
War.  In 1834 James Peltier and wife moved to Lima, and in 1835 settled
in Sugar Creek township, one and a quarter miles north of Elida, where
he cleared a farm from the forest on which he resided until 1863.  In
that year he removed to Marion township and settled on the farm now
owned by his son, William C. Peltier.   James Peltier was reared in the
faith of the Catholic Church, but after his marriage he changed his
opinions, became identified with the Methodist bodies and for 20 years
was a local Methodist preacher.  In political sentiment he was a
Republican.
    William C. Peltier was reared on his father's farm and after
completing a good, common school education began to teach.  He became
well known through Allen County as a teacher, his experience covering 23
winter terms in Sugar Creek and Marion townships.  The opening of the
Civil War aroused his patriotic feelings and he began to make
preparations to enter the army.  These culminated in his enlistment on
August 1, 1862, at Lima, in Company E, 99th Reg., Ohio Vol. Inf., under
Capt. J. C. Walters.  Three years of the best portion of his life were
devoted to the service of his country, his honorable discharge taking
place in July, 1865, at Salisbury, North Carolina.  Ohio people do not
need to be told of the doings of the gallant 99th Ohio during that
period.  Mr. Peltier participated in almost all of the battles,
skirmishes and long marches which this body was called upon to endure.
He was one of those who so bravely fought on the bloody field of
Chickamauga.  At Lookout Mountain he was wounded in the side by a rifle
ball, but took part in the Atlanta campaign from Dalton to Atlanta,
participated in the battles of Pumpkin Vine Creek, Burnt Hickory, Kenesaw
Mountain and the siege of Atlanta.  He was with General Thomas at
Nashville and fought through the two days of battle there, December
16-17, 1864.  He was in every battle of his regiment with the exception
of Stone River, when he was in a hospital.  Mr. Peltier has every reason
to feel proud of such a record.
    After his return from the army, he resumed farming and school
teaching.  He has always been interested in agricultural pursuits.  His
farm is divided into two equal portions, 80 acres being on each side  of
the road.  The tract on which his residence stands he cleared from the
forest, living in the meantime in a log cabin.  Through ditching,
draining and tiling he has made his property one of the best in the
township.  He has done much in the way of encouraging public
improvements and has always supported movements looking to the making of
good, substantial, permanent roads.
     On August 16, 1866, Mr. Peltier married Leah A. McBride, who was
born September 18, 1842, in German township, Allen County, Ohio, and was
a daughter of Alexander and Leah (Wolf) McBride.  Alexander McBride was
of Scotch-Irish extraction and was a pioneer in Allen County.  He has 10
children, Mrs. Peltier being the seventh in order of birth.  Four of her
brothers served in the Civil War.  Alexander McBride died on his farm,
aged 70 years.  He was a member of the Christian Union Church.  In
politics he was a Democrat.  Mrs. Peltier died November 18, 1887.  She
was a most worthy member of the United Brethren Church.  The children
born to our subject and wife were: a babe which died in infancy; Cora,
born June 22, 1868, who married Rev. J. J. Richards, and at her death,
September 22, 1897, left one son; H. M., born September 7, 1871 (a well
known educator and one of Allen County' s Board of School Examiners),
who married Callie Baxter, a daughter of Levi Baxter; Nelson, born March
23, 1876 (formerly a teacher, now a resident of Fort Wayne, Indiana),
who married Nettie North of Van Wert, and has one daughter, Leah
Janette; James, born December 14, 1880 (residing on the home farm and
teaching the district school), who married, on August 16, 1905, May
Edwards, of Delphos.  Mr. Peltier has given his sons 80 acres of land,
which they have divided among themselves.
    Politically, Mr. Peltier is identified with the Republican party.
In religious belief he is a Methodist and is a member of Morris Chaple.
During the period of its building he was one of the trustees and is now
a steward and class- leader.  He belongs to the Grand Army of the
Republic post, and to Hope Lodge, No. 214, F. & A. M., both of Delphos.

 

Joseph Helslip Harbison

 Joseph Helslip Harbison.  Among the honored residents
of Spencerville, whose residence here for almost a half century has been
marked with uprightness of life and sterling business qualities, is
Joseph Heslip Harbison, a worthy representative of a pioneer family of
the State.
    The earliest records of the family have been lost, but it can be
traced three generations back, through the family Bible, to the time of
the grandparents, who lived and died near a little village named
Ballamany, in the North of Ireland.  The little home was the shelter of
a large family, many sons and one daughter the names of the sons that
have been preserved were Mathew, John H. and Robert.  the birth of the
last named, who was the father of our subject, took place in Ireland,
whence he came to America about the year 1780.  He settled at Baltimore,
Maryland, where he entered into business as a flour merchant, and became
one of the prosperous men of his city.  In the great panic of 1827 he,
with many others who had been considered men of capital, lost all his
possessions and is a short space of time was reduced form affluence to
poverty.
    In this extremity Robert Harbison turned his thoughts to relatives
who were of the same lineage, and were settled in the Western part of
Pennsylvania.  It became necessary to found a new home and it is
possible that the first idea of Mr. Harbison was to locate with his
relatives, but  this plan was evidently abandoned.  About 1830, with his
wife and seven children, Mr. Harbison, with the family possessions
packed in wagons, left Baltimore and headed for the Western country.  We
may well believe the month of journeying as a long and weary time, but
without serious accident they finally arrived on the banks of Wills
Creek, in Coshocton County, Ohio.  Here Mr. Harbison took a life lease
of his brother-in-law, Joseph Heslip, on some 80 or 100 acres of land in
Linton Township, which had been originally entered by his father-in-law.
He did not live long enough, however, to develop this land or to place
his family  in comfortable circumstances.  He was a soldier at North
Point, in the War of 1812.  His death took place December 1, 1833, and
his wife survived him less than five years. Both were victims of
consumption.  Two of their children died in 1883, a son in February and
a daughter in March.
    Robert Harbison was married November 29, 1810, to Mary Heslip, whose
death took place April 25, 1838.  Her family were early settlers of
Coshocton County, Ohio, where they owned vast tracts of land at one
time.  The children of this marriage were: Robert, Eliza Ann, Margaret,
John Heslip, William, Susan, Mary, and Joseph Heslip, of Spencerville.
The eldest son of the family was born May 1, 1812, and served in the
Mexican War.  He was on his way home when stricken with mortal illness
and died at Cerralvo, Mexico, aged 35 years and 23 days.  Eliza Ann
(Platt) was born September 25, 1814, and died May 12, 1861.  Margaret
(McCune) was born Deceber 27, 1817, and died December 27, 1865.  Dr.
John Heslip Harbison, a pioneer merchant and physician, was born April
19, 1819, and died February 7, 1883, at Spencerville.  He married
Harriet Webb, sister of his business partner, and they had three sons
and three daughters, two of the latter being twins, one of whom is Mrs.
H. M. Ashton, wife of the postmaster at Spencerville, and the other,
Kitty, is the wife of Dr. M. E. Renner, of Urbana, Indiana.  William
Harbison was born November 17, 1821, and died November 6, 1860, at
Caledonia Illinois.  He married Harriet Cowgill; they are survived by a
son and daughter James and Mary.  Susan (Julien) was born March 3, 1824,
and died March , 1, 1883, at Old Plainfield, Ohio, leaving no issue.
Mary was born August 20, 1829, and died April 10, 1876.  She first
married J. C. Platt and was survived by a daughter, Luella, who is now
deceased.  Her second husband was a Mr. Ferguson.
    Joseph Heslip Harbison was the youngest member of his parents'
family of eight children and is the only survivor.  The others were all
born in Maryland, but his birth took place in Coshocton County, Ohio,
December 26, 1832.  When he was but one year old his father died and
when five years old he was bereft of his mother.  They both rest in
Linton Township, Coshocton County.  The orphan child was taken by his
maternal aunt Nancy Vance, a most estimable woman, of whom Mr. Harbison
entertains a grateful memory, who reared him carefully for the next 10
years.  She lived on a farm near Morristown and two miles from Bethesda.
He attended the local schools and enjoyed a short season in a small
academy at West Bedford.  Encouraged by his practical aunt, he learned
the cooper's trade in order to make himself independent.  He was
naturally inclined to be studious and, while working at the trade,
continued to study by himself and in this way acquired enough education
to receive a certificate to teach.
    In 1858 he came to Spencerville, a village then of some 400
dwellers, encouraged to do so by his brother, John H. Harbison, who then
conducted the only mercantile establishment in the place.   At that time
the beautifully situated hamlet bore the name " Acadia," but this was
subsequently changed to the present one of Spencerville.  During 1859 he
taught school and clerked for his brother, and continued to be
identified with mercantile interests here until 1884.  His school
teaching, beginning at Acadia (now Spencerville) covered in all some
four years.
    From the opening of the Civil War, Mr. Harbison had taken a deep
interest in its issues and the determination to do his part in the
suppression of rebellion culminated in his enlistment, on July 21, 1862,
in Company A, 81st Reg., Ohio Vol. Inf., 16th Army Corps, the regiment
being later transferred to the 15th Army Corps.  He served, with the
rank of sergeant, under Lieut, David S. VanPelt and Col. William H.
Hill, and participated in the following engagements:  Town Creek, Lay
Ferry, Rome, Cross Roads, Resaca and Kenesaw Mountain.  He took part in
the Atlanta campaign, accompanied Sherman in the "March to the Sea,"
was present at the taking of Savannah, Columbia, Lynch Creek,
Bentonville, was present at the surrender of Johnston, was in the march
to Richmond and then was in the Grand Review at Washington, which was
particularly pleasing to him as there he was commissioned a lieutenant
by Governor John Brough, of Ohio.  He was finally mustered out at
Louisville, Kentucky, July 13, 1865, and was honorably discharged at
Camp Dennison, July 21, 1865.  Through this long period he had served
his country with a fidelity which was recognized and suitably rewarded.
    After his return to Spencerville, Mr. Harbison was admitted to
partnership by his brother, under the firm style of J. H. Harbison &
Company.  This continued a few years, and then our subject purchased the
stock and the real estate of Mr. Fogle and opened a mercantile business
of his own.  He was appointed postmaster by President Hayes, succeeding
N. Meeker.  He continued in this office for seven years.   Mr.
Harbison's connections with almost all that has served to develop
Spencerville has made him one of the most prominent figures in the life
of the town for many years.  He was one of the early members of the Town
Council and had much to do with the measures which have caused its
development from a hamlet into its present prosperous activity and place
among the small cities of the State.  Realizing the importance of good
transportation, Mr. Harbison as one of the early promoters of the
railroads and to his advice, assistance and encouragement are due many
of the public utilities and successful commercial connections which are
enjoyed by every citizen.
    On March 21, 1866, Mr. Harbison was married to Sarah H. Patterson,
who was born in Wayne County, Ohio, of Irish descent.  She was a popular
teacher in the neighborhood of Spencerville at the time of her marriage.
The eldest of a family of six children, she, with one brother, is the
sole survivor.  The brother, H. M. Patterson, was formerly associated in
the mercantile business with Mr. Harbison, at Spencerville, but for 25
years has been a funeral director at Atlanta, Georgia.  Mr. and Mrs.
Harbison have two sons, Willis Grant and Charles Post.  The former was
named for the poet, N. P. Willis and for General Grant, for both of whom
his father entertains a great admiration.  He was graduated from the
Spencerville school, attended the Ohio Normal University at Ada, and for
19 years has been connected with the C. & E. Railroad.  Charles Post was
named for Mr. Post, one of the pioneers of Amanda township, a friend of
his father.  He also attended the Ohio Normal University at Ada, later
married Mary Koepling, and for some years has been the traveling
representative of a large wholesale drug firm of Chicago.
    Mr. Harbison has always been a supporter of the public schools, and
introduced many of the best-known text-books here, notably the "Appleton
Reader."  Had his early education been different and his life a more
leisurely one, Mr. Harbison would probably have developed his talent for
poetry.  He is a lover of good literature and is well acquainted with
the best poetry, being able to recite many of the gems of Robert Burns,
his favorite poet. 
    Mr. Harbison was made a Mason in 1856 and has always been an active
member of the fraternity.  He belongs to Lodge No. 306, F. & A. M. and
the Order of the Eastern Star.  For 19 years he was worshipful master of
the lodge at Spencerville.  He is known in this connection all over the
State.
    Since he was 16 years old, Mr. Harbison has been a church member.
In 1881 he united with the Baptist Church of Spencerville and shortly
afterward was elected a deacon, an office he still fills.  He has also
served as clerk and as trustee.
    Mr. Harbison owns considerable valuable property at Spencerville.
He has seen every house but one built on the Lima turnpike, where his
own handsome residence is located.  He is known to everyone and by the
younger generation is affectionately greeted as "Uncle Joe."