Lake County Ohio GenWeb

GEORGE ABBEY

From the Lake County Advertiser, on Friday, May 4, 1894, "p. 3," and reprinted in the January 1991 "LakeLines," the newsletter of the Lake County Genealogical Society.

retranscribed here by Kerri O'Connor.

Biographical Sketch on a Lake County Pioneer

THE LATE GEORGE ABBEY

George Abbey, Sr., a pioneer of Lake County, Ohio, died at this late residence in LeRoy township, on Sunday evening, April 8, 1894. His health had been declining for some months, but his more immediate fatal illness was about six weeks in length. His age was 88 years, lacking a few days, being born in Althorp, England, on the 29th day of April, A.D. 1806. His father's family consisted of four children, whose names in the order of their ages were William, Mary, George, and Maria. The subject of this memoir being the third child, though he outlived them all. The entire family of children came to this country early in the century, George preceeding the residue by something more than a year. On the 25th of December, he was married to Miss Ann Maltby, who still survives him to mourn his irreparable loss. This marriage was one of those which are evidently made in Heaven, for a more devoted couple never walked together through life. Their children and friends gathered at the hospitable home on last Christmas and helped them celebrate the 66th anniversary of their marriage, and no one more enjoyed the occasion than the venerable head of the household. Twelve children were born to this happy pair, to-wit: George, John, Ann, Rose, William, Ellen, Josue, Hannah, Albert, Letitia, Vashti and Walter.

George, the eldest, lives on an adjoining farm and is a well-known citizen of the town and county.

John died at the age of about 8 years.

Ann married Wesley McGee, who resides in Warsaw, Ind. Mrs. McGee is deceased, but has left five children, who are residents of the same town and state.

Rose married Wells Cone and lived near her father all her life. At the time of his decease she lay upon a sick bed, and she never knew of his death, dying a little more than a week from the time he left the world. She died on Tuesday, April 17, leaving a family of three children.

William, the fifth child, has lived most of his life on a farm a little east of the old home, and is a citizen well known to the readers of this article.

Ellen married Charles Hicks, and resides on a farm near Warren, Ill. She is the mother of seven children. She was able to visit her father during his sickness, but was unable to be present at the funeral obsequies.

Josue enlisted in the 14th Ohio Battery, and was shot dead on the 22nd day of July, 1864, while bravely serving his gun. Without flattery it is not too much to say that no braver soldier ever enlisted in the service of his country.

Hannah, the next in the order of age, is the wife of William Northard. Both herself and husband are well-known residents of Northeast LeRoy, and members of the M. E. Church in that place.

Albert enlisted in the same battery with his brother Josue, and was standing near him when he was killed. Shortly afterward he sickened and died on the 14th of April following, at New Orleans.

Letitia is the wife of Mortimer Pepoon. They are well-known residents of Warren, Illinois.

Vashti was married to John Garrett, her husband dying some eight years ago. She and her children were taken home by her father, and have lived with him ever since.

Walter, the youngest, has always lived near his father, working with and for him. They were together a great deal, and no one will miss him more than he, for each were in the habit of consulting the other on all occasions. No family within the acquaintance of this writer were happier in the family relation than this. No disagreements were ever suffered to mar the peace and harmony of the family relation, and the aged parents were ever loved and honored, and given highest place in the affections.

Immediately after his marriage Mr. Abbey came to America and settled in the state of New York, where they remained for a period of six years, or nearly so. Sixty years ago they settled in the township of LeRoy, where they have ever since resided. Few men have exerted greater influence in the community than he. He was a steadfast believer in the Christian religion, and died in the triumphs of a living faith. A man of strong will and sterling integrity. When he had once fixed upon a course of action he was not easily swerved from the line he had laid down. He loved his adopted country and cheerfully gave his sons to battle in its defense, and few men were better informed concerning the principles of government. Being a man of wide and varied information few men could talk more intelligently than he. He had not the school advantages that are possessed of the youth of this day, yet that fact would never be discovered, for he had made such good use of his later advantages that he would have been taken for one who had been much better educated. As a citizen he held nearly all the township offices and performed their duties with almost exceptional ability, being trustee, justice of the peace, and assessor from time to time. He was the youngest old man of the community, being always in touch with the movements of events, could talk intelligibly and interestingly on any topic before the people. He was a well-known figure in the county and town, was ever ready for a chat or kindly greeting, and having lived so long in the county he knew the older citizens, and was ever glad to meet and talk with an old resident. He will be greatly missed, for at the time of his death he was the oldest man in the town, and up to short time before his decease was very active in his movements, and would not be taken to be more than 60 years of age.

The funeral took place at this late residence, on Wednesday, April 11, the funeral services being conducted by Rev. Austin Wilson, an old friend, and one who had frequently participated in the family festivities.

The day was very stormy and disagreeable, yet the house was crowded with people who were anxious to pay their last tribute of respect to his memory, yet many of the older people of the community who would gladly have attended found it impossible to do so on account of the inclemency of the weather. Yes, he will be missed, especially by she who has walked in his company for 66 years, yet she lives in hope of a speedy reunion. Will be missed by children and grandchildren, with whom he was ever a child. Will be missed on the streets and in the public gatherings. But he has completed his course, run his race, and many will envy him in the fact that he died that noblest work of God, an upright, honest man.

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