G. W. FRESHWATER, is the postmaster and prominent merchant of Collins, Brooke county, W. Va. The year 1853 is the date of his birth, and Cross Creek township, Brooke county, W. Va., the place where he was born. The old home is still occupied by his father, J. R. Freshwater. The mother's maiden name was Lydia Ridgeley and she as well as her husband are natives of West Virginia. Until he was twenty-three years old Mr. Freshwater remained at home attending school and helping his father. At the expiration of this time he left home and engaged in the mercantile trade at Collins, where he still resides. About 1882 Mr. Freshwater was appointed postmaster by President Hayes and has since held the office with the exception of a short time that he was relieved during Cleveland's administration. In 1877 he took Miss Amy J. Swearingen to wife. She is the daughter of John C. and Ruth Swearingen, both natives of this state. They are the parents of five children, all of them living, they are: Charles R., Earl G., Neva E., George W. and John R. Mr. Freshwater has been more than ordinarily successful in all of his enterprises, and is surrounded by a cultivated family and a large circle of friends. He is a member of the I. O. O. F. The cause of education and the public highway measures have no firmer friend than G. W. Freshwater. J. R. Freshwater, father of G. W., was born March 21, 1811 in Cross Creek township, Brooke county, W. Va., or what was then Virginia. His father and mother, Reuben and Nancy (Beall) Freshwater, were also natives of this state. Until his marriage to Lydia Ridgeley, a West Virginian, and a daughter of William and Jane Ridgeley, the former was a native of Maryland, Mr. Freshwater remained with his father, assisting him, and acquiring an education. After his marriage, which took place in 1842, he purchased the farm on which he now resides and which he has since operated with good success. His children are: John E., William, Sarah J., deceased; George W. and David F. Mr. Freshwater has, since his residence in Collins, been prominently identified with the school improvement and highways, having held several minor offices in both departments. He is prosperous and contended, and although now at an advanced age, he is still active and efficient, giving promise of many years of life. Such men as this are the mainstay of a community.
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