JAMES R. DAWSON.
One of the well known farmers and citizens of Madison township, Carroll county, Indiana, during the past generation,
was James R. Dawson. Having enjoyed educational advantages superior to those which came within the opportunity
of most boys of his day and generation, he naturally became a leader in the agricultural life of Carroll county,
and at his death there was no man living in Madison township who was more highly respected than he.
Mr. Dawson was born in Democrat township, Carroll county, February 8, 1854, and was a son of Samuel and Catherine
(Travis) Dawson, natives of Indiana. The former, who was the owner of more than three hundred acres of land in
Carroll county, was a Democrat in politics and a prominent member of the Methodist Episcopal church. He was twice
married, the first time to a Miss Wilson, to which union were born two children: Isabel, the wife of James Whiteman,
one of the oldest citizens of Carroll county, and a former trustee of Madison township, and one child who died
in infancy. Mr. Dawson was later married to Catherine Travis, and to this union were born five children: James
R., the immediate subject of this review; Joseph, deceased; Charles, also deceased; Flora and Emma.
During his boyhood, the late James R. Dawson worked on his father's farm, attending the district schools during
the winter seasons. After his marriage he rented the home farm, where he lived for three years, and then purchased
an interest in Gee's mill, on Wildcat creek, where he worked for three years. Afterwards he entered DePauw University,
at Greencastle, Indiana, and for some time was a student there in the classical course. Upon the death of his father
he inherited one hundred and twenty acres of land in Democrat township, which he farmed for some time, in all about
eight years. Mrs. Dawson also inherited eighty acres, a part of her present farm, which Mr. Dawson rented. He also
bought forty six acres additional, making a total of one hundred and twenty six acres in the home farm.
The late James R. Dawson was married to Emily Jane Shaffer, the daughter of John and Mary (Shaffer) Shaffer, the
former of whom was a native of. Pennsylvania and who came alone from the Keystone state to Fairfield county, Ohio,
where he became a farmer, and where he met and married his wife. Subsequently he came to Madison township, Carroll
county, purchasing the farm which Mrs. Dawson now owns. He died on August 10, 1881. His wife, who was a native
of Fairfield county, Ohio, had passed away previously, on May 11, 1861. They were the parents of six children:
Harvey, who lives on a farm adjoining Mrs. Dawson; Esther, deceased; Catherine, who lives in Madison township,
is the wife of Frank Wood; Matilda, who died in infancy; Mrs. James R. Dawson, and Nelson, who married Lily Thomas.
Mr. and Mrs. James R. Dawson were the parents of six children: Edith, who lives in Clinton. county, Indiana, is
the wife, of Harry Kearns, and they have one child, Emily; Maude, living in Benton county, Indiana, is the wife
of John Travis; Lelia Laurel, who died in infancy; Mabel, living in Colorado, is the wife of Charles Sandifur,
and they have two children living, Mary and Ruth; Ruth, who is living at home with her mother, and Josephine,
who became the wife of N. Thompson, of Madison township. Since the death of her husband, October 15, 1907, Mrs.
James R. Dawson hags out the farm by fields, and lives in a unique old brick house, with surroundings which are
The late James R. Dawson was a Democrat in his political faith, while fraternally he was a member of the Masonic
order, and was an earnest and consistent member of the Methodist church, in which he took an active and interested
History of Carroll County, Indiana
Its People, Industries and Institutions
By: John C. Odell
B. F. Bowen & Company
Carroll County, IN
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