John D Grafton


JOHN D. GRAFTON, who has resided on his valuable farm of 230 acres, situated in Island Creek Township, since his father came here with his family, in 1844, is one of the township's representative citizens. He was born in this township, March 10, 1834, and is a son of Isaac and Jane (McFarland) Grafton. Isaac Grafton was born in Maryland but was brought early to Island Creek Township by his father, who was later killed here by a stroke of lightning, this happening before the birth of his grandson, John D. Grafton. In 1844, Isaac Grafton settled on the farm now owned by his son, John D. He lived into advanced age, dying in 1882. He married Jane McFarland, a daughter of William McFarland, who settled in Island Creek Township about 1812. There are three surviving children of Isaac and Jane Grafton: John D.; George W., who lives near Smithfield, O., and Jane, who is the widow of Thomas Robertson, (formerly of Steubenville, but she now resides in Stafford County, Kansas.)

John D. Grafton was ten years old when his parents settled on the present farm and here his life has been spent, his occupation always having been an agricultural one. He began to work independently in 1859 and has always met with reasonable success in his undertakings. During the Civil War he bought and sold a large amount of livestock and, being a man of excellent judgment, was able to make it profitable. He has a well cultivated farm and its value reaches what would be an impossible price to the ordinary purchaser of land. Mr. Grafton has devoted many years of his life to its cultivation and improvement. He has taken a good citizen's interest in public matters in his township and has been willing to take up himself the responsibilities of office when his fellow citizens have selected him for the same and has given faithful and efficient service. He is a Democrat and on the Democratic ticket was a candidate for county commissioner and was defeated by a very small majority. He has served as judge of elections and a number of years ago served as township trustee, to which office he was again elected for a term of two years, in November, 1909, while for a quarter of a century he has been a school director.

On January 21, 1858, Mr. Grafton was married, to Miss Sarah J. Palmer, who was born in Island Creek Township, Jefferson County, February 19, 1839, and is a daughter of George and Elma (Coulter) Palmer, the former of whom died in 1863. To Mr. and Mrs. Grafton seven children have been born: George P., who lives in Summit County, Ohio; Elma J., who is the wife of O. L. Swickard, of Island Creek Township; James, W., Isaac H. and Alonzo B., all of Island Creek Township; Martha A., who is the wife of J. W. Fleming, of this township; and Nancy A., who is deceased. Mr. and Mrs. Grafton are members of Pleasant Hill Presbyterian church.

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