Biography of Lewis D. Harcourt
Rush County, IN Biographies





LEWIS EDGAR HARCOURT, a member of the advisory board of Anderson township and a substantial retired farmer of that township now living at Milroy, was born in Rush county and has lived here all his life. He was born on a farm in Orange township oti October 16, 1862, son of James A. and Harriette (Kealer) Harcourt, who in their generation were among the best known and most influential residents of that community, and whose last days were spent in this county. James A. Hareourt was born in Rush county of pioneer parents and grew to manhood on the old home farm in Orange township, in time becoming a farmer on his own account and as his affairs prospered became the owner of two farms, one of 120 acres, a part of the old home place, and another of 240 acres. He is well remembered hereabout as the patentee and manufacturer of the Harcourt Hoosier grain drill, a device which had a wide popularity throughout this region in the days before the one way drill was introduced. For some time after patenting the Hoosier drill he manufactured the device on his farm, his little shop being operated by horse power, and he would turn out ten or twelve machines a year simply for the use of the neighbors, but as the popularity of the drill extended and demands began to come in from other sections he bought the old Scull woolen mill on Big Flat Rock, two and a half miles north of Moscow, and equipped the plant for the manufacture of 1,000 or more of the drills a year. This manufacture he kept up until the improved drills entered the general market, when he abandoned the business and retired to his farm in Orange township and was there engaged in farming the rest of his life. James A. Harcourt and wife were the parents of nine children, five of whom are still living, those besides the subject of this sketch being Alonzo Harcourt, of Orange township; Melissa, wife of John Hungerford, of that same township; Elmazie, wife of John Hardick, of Rushville, and Wilbur Harcourt, the well known blacksmith. Lewis E. Harcourt was reared on the home farm in Orange township; received his schooling, in the excellent schools of that neighborhood and until he was twenty three years of age was engaged in work in his father's drill factory. He then rented his father's farm in Anderson township and thus occupied that place until after his father's death. In the distribution of the estate he received a tract of forty acres, to which by purchase he added an adjoining "forty." This place he presently sold and then bought the old Rickets farm of 117 acres, moved to the same and there made his home for fourteen years, at the end of which time le retired from the active labors of the farm and moved to Milroy, where he has a very pleasant home and where he and his family are quite comfortably situated. Mr. Harcourt is an ardent Republican, as was his father before him, and has ever given his earnest attention to local civic affairs, at present and for some time past serving the public as a member of the advisory board of Anderson township. In 1886 Lewis E. Harcourt was united in marriage to Martha C. Hodges, who also was born in this county, daughter of Alfred Hodges, and to this union five children have been born, Faud, Ertel, Callie, Clifford and Jewel (deceased). Faud Harcourt married Nellie Whiteman, who died leaving one child, a little daughter. Lois Ertel Hareourt married Grace Kiplinger and Clifford Harcourt married Carrie Brown. Mr. and Mrs. Harcourt are members of the Methodist Episcopal church and have ever taken an interested and active part in church work, Mr. Harcourt now and for some time past serving as a member of the board of trustees of the church.

From:
Centennian History of Rush County, Indiana
Edited by: A. L. Gary and E. B. Thomas
Historical Publishing Company
Indianapolis 1921


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