Also see [Railway Officials in America 1906]
Among the venerable pioneers none are more worthy of a prominent place in the history of Berrien County than
the gentleman whose name heads this brief sketch. He was born in Scotland, Feb. 20, 1820, and was the third in
a family of eight children. His father came to America in 1826, settling in the State of New York; he was a farmer
by occupation. James’ younger days were spent the same as most farmers’ boys, assisting on the farm summers, attending
district school winters. Industry, economy, and integrity were the first and last lessons of his boyhood. He remained
at home until reaching his majority; then he went to Canada, where he hired out by the month in the lumber woods,
remaining there seventeen years, commencing with twelve dollars per month, but was getting fifty dollars at the
time he left. In 1861, October 14th, he married Miss Elizabeth, daughter of Thomas and Helen Gilkison. This union
was blessed with one child, Sarah, born Jan. 3, 1863. Mrs. Hannah’s parents were natives of Ireland. In the spring
of 1862, Mr. Hannah and his young wife came to Michigan, settling on the farm where they now reside, which consists
of one hundred and twenty-seven acres, on section 26, in the township of Hagar, having about one hundred acres
improved. He has always given his undivided attention to farming in general, taking pride in raising the best of
everything. He is fond of good horses, having raised some very fine ones since his locution here. Commencing life
with only his natural resources for his capital, a willing heart and strong arm, he cannot help looking back on
his past success with pleasure. In polities he is a Democrat, though never an office seeker; has often been solicited,
but would not accept. In religion his views are liberal. Mr. Hannah’s father died in 1850, at the ripe old age
of eighty. Two brothers and one sister are still living, all that remains of their once unbroken family.
History of Berrien and Van Buren Counties, Michigan
With Illistrations and Biographical Sketches
of Its Prominent Men and Pioneers.
D. W. Ensign & Co., Philadelphia 1880
Press of J. B. Lippincoff & Co., Philadelphia.