Biography of Prof. Roy D. Mitchell
Erie County, OH Biographies





PROF. ROY D. MITCHELL. As proprietor of the Sandusky Business College, Prof. Roy D. Mitchell is personally identified with an important educational institution of the city, and is contributing his full share in so developing the business ability of the young men and women of Erie County as to make them a self reliant and self supporting class of people. He was born November 4, 1873, in a sod house five miles north of the present site of Bradshaw, York County, Nebraska. He saw a train of cars for the first time when the Burlington road was extended into Bradshaw; he was then nine years old. He is a lineal descendant of Hugh Mitchell, who emigrated from Ayr County, Scotland, to America in 1782, the line of descent being as follows: Hugh Mitchell, John Mitchell, William Mitchell, James Mitchell, and Roy D. Mitchell.

William Mitchell, the Professor's grandfather, was born September 14,1811. At Cadiz, Ohio, October 18, 1838, he married Mary Ann Atkison, and there was a resident until 1855. In the spring of that year, accompanied by his family, he removed to Lynnville, Jasper County, Iowa, going by way of the Ohio and Mississippi rivers to Keokuk, thence by team to Lynnville, where he became a pioneer settler. At that time there were no railroads west of the Mississippi, and all of the country roundabout was in its original wildness. His wife died in 1864 and is buried in Lynnville cemetery. After farming a few years in that locality, he moved to Boone County, Iowa, and there spent his last days, at his death, which occurred June 6, 1887, being buried in the Mitchell cemetery, three miles west of Zenorsville. He married Mrs. Elizabeth Wilson at Ridge Port, Iowa, in November, 1868, who survived him at the time of his death.

The birth of James Mitchell occurred June 13, 1845, in Cadiz, Ohio, where the first ten years of his life were spent. Going then to Iowa with his parents, he was there reared to agricultural pursuits. On December 31, 1869, he was united in marriage with Lucinda Myers. The following spring he joined the Myers colony, which included his wife's father and mother, brothers and sisters, and made an overland journey, driving an ox team to York County, Nebraska. All of that section of the Union was then owned either by the Government or by the railroad companies, and antelope and other wild game native to that section were plentiful, and not very far away large herds of buffalo roamed the prairies. Each autumn the pioneer settlers used to go in parties in search of buffalo, and would cure the large quantities of buffalo meat brought home by the sportsmen for future use on the table. Securing a tract of Government land, Mr. James Mitchell built a sod house which the family occupied a number of years, and began the improvement of a homestead, doing all of his farm work and marketing with oxen, having no horses. The sod house made possible the settlement of the prairies, as no wood was obtainable without hauling it a great distance. The walls were thick and the houses comfortable both summer and winter, but the settlers endured many hardships and discouragements on the wind swept plains the first few years. Columbus, sixty miles away, in Platte County, was the nearest trading point, and he not only frequently went there, but he also made trips with oxen to Lincoln, which was still further distant. Succeeding well in his agricultural undertakings, he improved his land, erected a good set of farm buildings, and there lived until 1914, when he sold out his Nebraska interests, and now makes his home with a son who lives not far from the old homestead. His wife died November 11, 1904, leaving four sons, as follows: Charles B., York, Nebraska; Chauncey H., Oklaunion, Texas; Roy D.; and William P., who resided at Telluride, Colorado, at the time of his accidental death there May 24, 1911.

Having obtained his preliminary education in the rural schools of his native district, Roy D. Mitchell continued his studies at York College, later teaching three terms in the rural school of his home district. He then completed a full course at the Omaha Commercial College, in Omaha, Nebraska, after which he entered the Woodbine (Iowa) Normal School, where for two years he still further advanced his studies in preparation for teaching. In 1898, on July 11, Professor Mitchell came to Sandusky to accept a position as teacher in the Sandusky Business College, and taught under T. W. Bookmyer, the proprietor for nine years. On June 1, 1907, the professor succeeded to the ownership of the institution, and in its management has met with success, his school being well patronized, and its graduates being well fitted for business positions; he is also closely identified with some of the financial and manufacturing interests of the city.

On June 28, 1899, at Woodbine, Iowa, Professor Mitchell married Bertha Emily Hall, who was born in Harrison County, Iowa, a daughter of John and Camilla Hall. A woman of culture and refinement, she was educated in Iowa, being graduated from the Woodbine Normal School, and is now a teacher in the Sandusky Business College.

The professor is identified with the Masonic fraternity, being a member of Perseverance Lodge No. 329, Free and Accepted Masons; of Sandusky City Chapter No. 72, Royal Arch Masons; of Sandusky City Council No. 26, Royal and Select Masters; and of Erie Commandery No. 23, Knights Templar.

From:
A Standard History of Erie County, Ohio
By: Hewson L. Peeke
Assisted by a Board of Advisory Editors
The Lewis Publishing Company Chicago and New York 1916


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