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Rev. Elias Rowland

Rev. Elias Rowland, a Union veteran of the late war, and a much respected and influential citizen of Blacklick township, is one whose life has been full of incident and change. He is a son of William and Clarissa (Rundel) Rowland, and was born in Blacklick, then a part of Cambria township, Cambria county, Pennsylvania, February 16, 1833. The Rowlands are of Welsh descent, and William Rowland or Rowland Williams, as he was called in Wales, according to a peculiar custom of that country, came to the United States about the commencement of the present century, and settled in the vicinity of Ebensburg with his family, which consisted of his wife and two sons and a daughter. The sons were Ellis and Griffith, and the daughter, Janet, married William Williams, a Baptist minister; the second son, Griffith Rowland, was a farmer and a Baptist, like his father before him, but in addition to farming, he also kept a hotel. He died in 1847, aged seventy-six years, and
his remains were interred at Bethel church, where they still rest. He was an energetic man, and married Jane Jones, a native of Wales, by whom he had seven children: William, Maria, who married John B. Crumb, and after his death wedded Joseph Craig; Isaac, Jacob, who was killed in childhood; Griffith, Jr., John and Eliza, who wedded Enoch Reese. All of these children, who grew to maturity, were Baptists, and settled on farms in Cambria and the adjoining county of Indiana. William Rowland was born October 13, 18o1, and in 1838 removed to South Mahoning township, Indiana county, where he was a thrifty farmer, and owned a farm of one hundred acres of land, upon which he died August 8,1883. He was a man of broad and liberal views, well informed on general topics, and married Clarissa Rundle, a daughter of Gilbert Rundel, of Carroll township. Mrs. Rowland was born May 26, 1809, and is still living.

The children of Mr. and Mrs. Rowland were: Rev. Elias, William S., residing on the home farm; John G., a Union soldier, who was taken prisoner at Ream's Station, and died in Saulsbury prison, North Carolina; Isaac, a farmer and merchant at Lewisville, Clark county, Washington; Jacob, who went to Jefferson city, Missouri, and died there; Emma Jane deceased; Anna M., wife of I. N. Wissinger, a farmer, of Blacklick township; Elizabeth, widow of Thomas Mitchell; Mary E., wedded John Davis, a farmer and merchant, of Glen Glade, this State; Rev. Martin L., a Baptist minister, located at Dunkard, Greene county; Mahalah, died in infancy; Amanda, wife of Thomas M. Jones, of Portland, Oregon; and Sarah R., who married Coleman Miller, of Toledo, Ohio. Rev. Elias Rowland spent his boyhood days on the farm, and received his elementary education in the common schools, but is of that class of men who never cease to be students by observation, reading and self-reflection. He remained on the farm up to 1852, in which year he went to work at the Cambria Iron works. Two years later he married, and was engaged in farming for eight years, during which time he read medicine. In 1863, when an urgent call came for troops, he was about ready to attend medical lectures, but patriotically stopped on the field, where he was plowing, and enlisted on June 15th, in company A, battalion of emergency men, and served until Lee was driven across the Potomac, being discharged August 8,1863. A few months later on March 31, 1864, he enlisted in company K, One Hundred and Eighty-seventh Pennsylvania volunteers, and served in the Fifth Army corps, being in the battles of Cold Harbor, Petersburg, Second Weldon Railroad and Fort White. He was discharged at Harrisburg, August 3, 1865, and returned home where he has been chiefly engaged ever since in farming. He is a republican in politics, has held most of his township's offices, and has served continuously for twenty-six years as a justice of the peace. Mr. Rowland is a member of the Baptist church, in which he has been a deacon since 1866, and by which he was licensed to preach in 1892, being ordained to the Gospel ministry June 9,1896. He is a pleasant, congenial gentleman, a close student, and an active and public-spirited citizen, who is ready to assist or lead in any enterprise that promises benefit to his fellow-citizens. In the church he is a zealous worker in matters both spiritual or secular, and ever ready to render aid, either in the capacity of private member or minister. On November 28, 1854, Rev. Rowland was united in marriage with Isabella W. Simpson whose father, Levi Simpson, was a resident of Covode, Indiana county. To their union have been born six children: John Luther, who died in boyhood; James E., now engaged in farming in Blacklick township; Isaac E., who passed away in childhood; Alva H., a resident and farmer in his native township; Austin E., who died in boyhood; and H. C., now engaged in farming and teaching. (Samuel Wiley's Biographical Cyclopedia, Cambria Co, PA)

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