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JAMES H. LOGAN

James Harvey Logan Obituary
[January, 1902]

The career of James H. Logan, deserves more than the usual mention of death. His death occurred last Tuesday morning, Jan. 21, 1902 at 10 o’clock at the residence of his son-in-law Senator C.H. Scott, in this city, surrounded by his family and his physician Dr. Golden, where he had resided his the death of his wife 1897. Mr. Logan had been a sufferer of Brights disease of the kidneys for several years which was the cause of his. He was not at any time a robust man and his health had been bad for several years but in the last few months he had failed so much that he became quite feeble. His physician, who was with him at the time of his death, did all that could be done but he had so many troubles incident to extreme old age that remidies were unavaling. The funeral obsequies were conducted on Thursday at the old home of the deceased at Beverly, by the Rev. Dr. A.H. Hamilton, of Lexington assisted by the pastor, Rev. Mr. Thomas of the Presbyterian church, after which he was laid to rest beside his departed wife and amidst his children and grand children, in the cemetery at that place.

He was born in Rockbridge County near Lexington Virginia on Kerr’s creek, on the 24 day of November 1816. And was therefore in the 86th, year of his age. His ancestors were among the hardy pioneers of Virginia, where many of them become distinguished in its early history. His grandfather, James Logan who was also a native of Rockbridge, was a soldier in the Revolutionary War and lived to the age of 92 years, having died June 19, 1824.

His father Wm. Logan served in the Army of the United States in the war of 1812 with England and arose to the rank of Colonel and 1814 at Norfolk was in command for sometime of the famous Botetourt Regiment. He was once wounded and received a pension. The mother of the subject of this sketch was Elizabeth Crawford daughter of William Alex Crawford, of Lexington, who died at Valley Head in this County on August 21, 1830. And Col. Wm. Logan afterward married Rebecca Craig of Columbus, Ohio. At an early age James H. manifested an appitude for books and was sent to Granville Academy for two years and afterward he attended Washington College at Lexington, now Washington and Lee University for about six years, where he took the regular College course and completed it in 1837. He then returned to West Virginia and engaged in teaching for several years, first in Pocahontas and Greenbrier, then in Randolph. He was perhaps the first resident of the county to obtain a College education and it was largely due to his good work at Huttonsville and Beverly that foundation was laid for the interest manifested in later years by the people of the valley in the course of education, throughout his life he was greatly interested in the education of the masses of the people, and was an ardent supporter of the free school system even when other large property owners all over the state were opposing it. While he attended College he taught school during the summer vacation and some time longer, thus earning the funds with which to defray his expenses at college for the rest of the year, and after completing his education, for several years he was a teacher and met with marked success, as he was then known as a good teacher, and as scores of the best and most prosperous citizens in this section of the state were his pupils and owe their success in life to his training in their boyhood. He was united in marriage January 25, 1853, to Mary Gamble Crawford daughter of Robert Crawford of Lexington, and they had four children born, tow of whom died in infancy. The oldest daughter Frances Irvine was married on January 26, 1886 to Mr. C.H. Scott and died in 1892, leaving three children two of whom since died and one daughter, Edna now 14 years of age is now attending the Wheeling Female College. His other daughter Emma Crawford Logan became the wife of Mr. Scott on April 14, 1894, and has two children, a son and daughter the son being named James H. Logan Scott. And the daughter being born the day before his death. Mr. Logan was a man of strong and positive character, and took definite stand on all matters in favor of light and truth as he understood it. He was honorable and upright to the last farthing in his dealings and always enjoyed the fullest confidence and respect of all his neighbors and acquaintances. A reader and student of the widest range, he molded opinions of his own upon all questions, not only in politics and phylosophy, but to some extent in matters of religion. He was a democrat but he did not hesitate to support the man before the party whenever he felt like it. He would denounce the party machinery, when it sought to keep him in line, as “the slavish trapping party organized to stifle the voice of freedom”. Likewise in the matter of religion he was disposed to investigate for himself, and in his earlier life was sometimes called a free thinker. He believed in personal investigation, that this world is a system of progression and development, and that man being immortal is capable of infinite development in his intellectual being according to devine laws. He held that the race had arisen in accordance with those laws of progression from a low estate to its present exalted position. And that his development was stamped upon every age. And upon every species, and that by genius, this systematic development must continue throughout the ages. He was a man of profound reverence for the Divinity. It was a favorite saying his, that “God does not act without design. He never gave the bird wings, without intending it to fly, nor did he endow man with that noble and God-like faculty of reason, without intending for him to reason and investigate for himself.” With him everything was positive and real, and had no patience or respect for anything that looked to him like a sham.

Although not inclined to public life, he held many places of trust and honor, being commissioner on behalf of Randolph County, in the formation of Barbour, Tucker, Webster and Upshur counties, when those counties were formed all of which were taken either in whole or in part from Randolph County. He also represented this county in the boundary settlement between it and Pocahontas upon the court of Arbitration in 1882.

He was surveyor and deputy surveyor for many years, and member of the counsel and recorder of the town of Beverly for several years. The last enterprise in which he took any interest was in the establishment of the new bank in Elkins, in which owned stock and in the success of which he felt a great interest. But it can truly be said of him that his ruling idea in his life was land. He acquired an immense amount of land in Randolph and all adjoining counties owning many of the finest tracts of timber coal and farming lands in this part of the state. And he has sold small farms and located more settlers than any other man in the country. He could sell land to anybody that wanted to buy a home. And at a good figure because the purchaser knew he could have his own time to pay for it.

Holding land notes for thirty years and more he has never sued upon any purchase notes except where there was some other reason besides the mere collection of the debt. While he was opposed to litigation still when he felt that he was being imposed upon, he would contend to the end and when he once started a controversy, no matter what it was about, if he held that there was a principal of right involved, he never looked backward. He was the owner at the time of his death of more than 2000 acres of land, besides a large personal estate, which descends to his daughter and granddaughter, all of which is the result of his careful business methods and industry. Fore more than sixty years James H. Logan has been a prominent factor in the affairs of this Country, and he will be remembered by his people as a careful industrious and honorable man, whose example might well be emulated by those who shall follow him.
Requescat in peace.
X X X

True Copy of obit. in Randolph Enterprise (Handwritten at the bottom of the last page)


Retyped September 5, 2005 by Tom Hackman from typed copy in the records of Cyrus Scott Smith, great-grandson of the obituary’s subject. All spellings and wording left as in the original.

Contributed by
Tom Hackman
Assistant Professor of Theatre
Davis & Elkins College
Elkins, WV

Added October 13, 2006

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