James S. Gentry (1813 – )

”JAMES S. GENTRY, an old settler, as well as an enterprising farmer and stock-raiser of this county, was born on January 9, 1813, in Kentucky, and is the second of three children given to Elijah and Elizabeth (Ware) Gentry, natives of Tennessee and Virginia, and of English and Scotch origin, respectively. James S. was reared on a farm, attended school in Indiana about eleven months, and so learned to read and cipher. His parents brought him into Indiana in 1816, and settled in Harrison County. About 1817, his father died, and his mother moved, first to Lost River, Orange County, in 1822, and then to Morgan County, and, about 1838 or 1839, James S. entered eighty acres of land, where he now lives, and to which he has added, until the number of acres amounts to 253, all cultivated, with residence, out-buildings and orchard.

On February 8, 1838, Mr. Gentry married Eliza, daughter of Joseph and Mary (Graham) Campbell, of Monroe County. Her parents came here in 1818, and her mother drew a silver medal for being the oldest settler represented at the the old settlers’ meeting, August 9, 1883. By this union, Mr. Gentry had the following children: William C.. Lemuel K. (deceased), Norman J., Mary J. (Cosner), Joseph P., James M, David D. and Thomas H. Two of Mr. Gentry’s sons, William C. and Lemuel K., were in the late war. Mr. Gentry was a member, formerly, of the I. O. O. F. and of the Grange. He and wife are members of the M. P. Church, and are very benevolent in disposition. He served on the Board of Trustees five years, and in 1859, was elected, when the law was changed, and served until 1873. In the spring of 1878, he was again elected for a term of two years. He is a Democrat. In forty years, Mr. Gentry has not lost three days of time on account of illness. He lives in a house, a part of the lumber in the building of which was made by his hands in 1837, being sawed out with a whip-saw, and he has worked with a whipsaw for a month at a time, for 50 cents per day, thinking this large pay. In using this saw, two men could saw 400 feet of lumber per day. Mr. Gentry built rafts at Mt. Tabor at an early day, and labored thus, until the construction of the New Albany Railroad, at which time rafting ceased.”

Source:  Counties of Morgan, Monroe and Brown Indiana, by Charles Blanchard, F.A. Battey and Co., Publishers, Chicago 1844, page 615

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


By submitting a comment here you grant this site a perpetual license to reproduce your words and name/web site in attribution.