John C. Beresford


JOHN C. BERESFORD, one of Richmond's most respected citizens, a notary public for thirty years and ever since its organization, a leading member of Harry Hale Post No. 427, G. A. R., is a member of a substantial old family of Jefferson County. He is a native of this county, born in ROss Township, September 18, 1838 and is a son of John and Matilda (Culp) Beresford.

John Beresford was born in England in 1795 and his parents were John and Matilda Beresford, who moved from England to Ireland and from there came to America and settled on Yellow Creek, in Ross Township, Jefferson County, when their son John was nine years old. Grandfather John Beresford went into salt making with Capt. James Mitchell.

John Beresford, the father, attended school for a short time and as soon as he was old enough he also went to work at the salt wells but later learned the blacksmith's trade and worked at it for many years. His whole subsequent life was passed on Yellow Creek, where he acquired farming land, and there he died in 1897, when he aged ninety-three years. He married Matilda Culp, who also lived into advanced age, dying in 1899, in her ninethieth year. They were both interred at the Shanetown Cemetery. Of their children almost all survived to have families of their own. The two eldest, George and Alfred are both deceased. Bateman married Sarah Crabb and they live in Benton County, Iowa. Keziah married Capt. William Sturgis, of Clarksburg, Mo., John C. was the fifth in order of birth. Katherine married Joshua Saltsman, of Somerset, Jefferson County. Robert H. died soon after the close of the war. Matilda married A. J. Graham, of Ross Township. Marion married Sadie Goodland and they reside at Mingo Junction. James, Margaret and Tillie, are all deceased. The parents of the above family were good people, members of the Bacon Ridge Presbyterian Church and their unusually long lives were filled with kind neighborliness and the virtues which the world always needs.

John C. Beresford attended the public schools of Ross Township and took a short course in Duff's Commercial College at Pittsburgh, after which he taught school for eleven winters, being located successively in Ross, Brush Creek, Salem, Springfield and Island Creek Townships. He then went back to the farm to help his father and worked also in the blacksmith shop until he enlisted for service in the Civil War. Mr. Beresford has the distinction of being the first man from Ross Township to serve out a three-year term of enlistment. He was a member of COmpany K, Second Ohio Vol. Inf., and participated in many of the hard won battles of that great struggle and he, by no means came off unharmed. His first wound was one received on his right jaw; the second one injured his leg, while the third removed the first finger of his left hand. These marks will continue with Mr. Beresford through life and to every rightminded man they are tokens of a kind that should arouse respect and admiration, indicating as they do that in 1861 patriotism meant much more than it sometimes now appears to mean. After his loss of his finger made him no longer useful as a soldier, he returned to the home farm in Ross Township, but after his marriage he removed to Richmond.

In February, 1900, he was united in marriage with Miss Elizabeth Burchfield, a daughter of Milton Burchfield. Mrs. Beresford died in November, 1905, leaving no issue.

Mr. Beresford has been very active in Grand Army matters. He has served three terms as commander of the Harry Hale Post, No. 427; for three years was department commander of staff and is serving in his second year as commander-in-chief and as a delegate will attend the annual encampment which will be held in the fall of 1910, at Atlandtic City, N. J.

In his political views, Mr. Beresford is an Independent Democrat. He has filled offices in Ross Township at different times, where he was land appraiser and for three successive terms was assessor. He attends the Presbyterian Church.

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