Also see [Railway Officials in America 1906]
Lycurgus J. Wheeler, the pioneer merchant of Nashville. was born in the town of Wheeler, Steuben Co., N. Y.,
Feb. 9, 1830. The Wheeler family are of Scotch-Irish extraction, a combination of national characteristics, energy,
and intellectual ability that has done much for the advancement of civilization and the best interests of society.
But little is known of the family history previous to their emigration to Steuben from Saratoga County, where they
were a prominent family. Jonas Wheeler, grandfather of the subject of this biography, came from Saratoga and settled
in the town which was afterwards named in honor of his brother Silas, who settled in the township a few years earlier.
He was a man of wealth, and for many years one of Steubenís most prominent citizens. He reared a family of twentytwo
children. Asa Wheeler, his son and father of Lycurgus J., was born in the town of Galaway, Saratoga Co., Oct. 8,
1797. He married Miss Henrietta, daughter of Isaiah Betts, who was an officer in the Revolution. He came to Steuben
with his father, and was also one of its leading citizens. In 1834 he came to Michigan on a tour of observation,
and, being favorably impressed with the country, returned East and the following year (1835) came back and settled
in the township of Saline, Washtenaw Co., where he followed his trade, that of a shoemaker, until his removal to
Woodland, in 1842. Here he resided until 1866. During this time he identified himself laroely with the growth and
development ofí the town. He was its first magistrate. a position he filled creditably for twenty years. He took
an active part in political matters, and was an exemplary member of the Wesleyan Methodist Church.
Lycurgus J. obtained an academical education, which he made practically useful to himself and others by teaching.
This avocation he followed, in connection with farming, until 1861, when he entered the army as a member of the
Sixth Michigan Cavalry. After a period of active service he was detailed for clerical duty at Gen. Copelandís headquarters,
where he remained until 1863, when he returned home on recruiting service.
At the close of the war Mr. Wheeler returned to Woodland; the following year he disposed of his property and came
to Nashville, where he established one of the first stores in the place. He has since prosecuted a successful business
in merchandising, and has identified himself largely with the growth arid development of the village. He has taken
the initiative in all religious and educational enterprises and has done much in building up and advancing the
best interests of society. In May, 1860, Mr. Wheeler was married to Miss Sarah J., daughter of Reuben Haight, one
of the pioneers of Woodland. She died in 1863, and he was again married, Dec. 26, 1865, to Mary J. Ellis, of Hastings.
She died Dec. 20, 1874, and Sept. 10, 1876, he married Mrs. Maria I. McNab, of Big Rapids.
Nashville is largely indebted to Mr. Wheeler for the public spirit and enterprise he has evinced in its belialf
and among its leading citizens he occupies a prominent position. He takes decided grounds on the subject of political
prohibition, and was the nominee of the Prohibition party for the Legislature for the eastern district of Barry
County in 1878.
History of Allegan and Berry Counties, Michigan
With Illistrations and Biographical Sketches
of Their Men and Pioneers.
D. W. Ensign & Co., Philadelphia 1880
Press of J. B. Lippincoff & Co., Philadelphia.