Biography of Delos C. Ransom
Erie County, OH Biographies





DELOS C. RANSOM. More than ninety years have gone since the Ransom family first became established in Erie County, Ohio. The work and influence of several generations have entered into the fabric of present day civilization, and as farmers, business men, soldiers and all around good citizens they have played a most honorable part. DeLos C. Ransom, who has for many years been identified with the real estate business in Sandusky, is a native of Erie County, enlisted from this county for a long and active service in the Civil war, and for a number of years followed farming before his removal to Sandusky.

DeLos C. Ransom was born in Perkins Township of Erie County, August 28, 1840. He is the great grandson of Joseph Ransom, who was born in Connecticut, and with the Connecticut state troops served in the Revolutionary war. He was wounded in the battle at Saratoga. Late in life he followed some of his children to Huron County, Ohio, and lived with his son in Eldridge Township, in what is now Berlin Township of Erie County. After a few years this old soldier and his cousin John embarked on a sail vessel from Huron with the intention of visiting Connecticut. After the boat left port nothing was ever heard of it nor its crew and passengers. The wife of the old Revolutionary veteran survived him several years and was buried on the Wood farm in Berlin Township.

The grandfather of DeLos C. Ransom was Russell Ransom, who was born in Connecticut, and in 1823, with wife and children, came out to Ohio. The trip was made overland with teams and wagons, and they were a month on the way, camping out by the roadside or stopping at the inns which flanked all the roads of overland travel in those days. Arriving in what is now Erie County he bought land in Berlin Township It was covered with a dense growth of forest and his first work was to put up a log cabin. After that he began clearing off the trees and put in a crop among the stumps. As is well known to historical students, this section of Northern Ohio was still an almost unbroken wilderness, and the pioneers found abundant supplies for their table in the wild game which was everywhere in the woods and along the streams. Russell Ransom in time had cleared up a large tract of land, replaced the old log house with a substantial frame building, and lived there until his death at the age of eighty years, his wife having preceded him to the better land. Her maiden name was Wickham. Their nine children were named Isaac \V., Mitchell, Diodot, Henry, Asa, Frederick, Lydia, Harriet and Lois. When the Ransom family first settled in Northern Ohio there was practically no market for grain Most of the settlers raised their own provisions, and for supplies that could not be grown on their own land or found in the woods they paid by raising live stock, which was driven to distant markets. The opening of better communication between the west and the eastern markets through the completion of the Erie Canal about 1825 made the raising of grain profitable, and after that the Ransoms and other agricultural settlers in Northern Ohio began to prosper.

Isaac Ransom, father of DeLos C., was born in Connecticut in 1814, and was about nine years of age when he came out to Ohio with the other members of the family. Though a boy of tender years he accomplished almost the entire journey on foot. After reaching maturity he secured a tract of land in Perkins Township, erected a log house with only a small window to let in light and air. He had the usual experiences of the pioneer of the '30s and '40s, and with his own toil and the aid of his children cleared up a good farm. In time his prosperity was measured by the erection of a fine brick house with suitable farm buildings, and he lived there until his death on February 22, 1888. Isaac Ransom married Mary Wright. She was born at Fishkill, New York, in 1818 and died January 15, 1897. Her father was Benjamin Wright, who was born in Fishkill, New York, and was a soldier of the War of 1812. He came to Ohio about 1830, settling in what is now Berlin Township of Erie County, where he bought land and improved a farm and lived there until his death at the age of eighty eight. Benjamin Wright married a Miss Baker, who was also a native of Fishkill and who died before her husband, Isaac Ransom and wife reared two sons: De Los C. and George A. The latter died at the age of fifty years, leaving two sons named Ross Delos and Webster Hamilton. These boys at the time of their father's death were aged twelve and ten respectively, and after that were reared in the home of their uncle; DeLos Ransom, who was their guardian and looked after their interests and welfare until they were independent and self supporting.

DeLos C. Ransom attended the country schools of Perkins Township, and in 1860 graduated from the Sandusky High School. After that he taught for a time in the old schoolhouse near the brick church in Perkins Township, during the winter of 1860-61, his wages being a dollar a day, and as was the custom of the time, "boarding around" with the various families who were patrons of the school. The quiet pursuits of civil life were interrupted by the outbreak of the war, and in August, 1862, he enlisted in Company G of the One Hundred and Twenty third Ohio Infantry. He went south with this regiment, and was with it in its campaigns, marches and battles. The regiment was captured June 15, 1863, and for a short time Mr. Ransom boarded with Jeff Davis at Libby Prison in Richmond. After being paroled he was detailed as clerk at brigade headquarters, and was present at the surrender of Lee, and only a few rods from the "Lane House" where Grant and Lee met and arranged terms of surrender. He witnesged the stirring scenes at Appomattox, when the Confederate soldiers were disbanded and started for their homes, stripped of their arms but loaded with provisions given them by Uncle Sam. The One Hundreds and Twenty third Ohio Regiment received special praise in a report from General Grant, in which it was said that this small aggregation of troops, comprising 600 men, including a portion of the One Hundred and Twenty third Ohio and Fifty fourth Pennsylvania, had inflicted a loss upon the enemy of more than their entire number. Mr. Ransom was honorably discharged in June, 1865, and after his return to Erie County became associated with his brother George in managing the old homestead. Since 1877 Mr. Ransom has lived in Sandusky, and has transacted a large aggregate of business in real estate lines. He was a member of plating commission of Sandusky for two years which was its length of existence.

On December 24, 1869, he married Caroline Taylor, who was born March 24, 1839, a daughter of Nelson and Martha (Akins) Taylor. Nelson Taylor was a farmer of Perkins Township and served as a member of one of the early boards of commissioners of the county. Mrs. Ransom died October 6, 1901. Mr. Ransom is affiliated with McMeen's Post of the Grand Army of the Republic and has always stood high in Grand Army circles and in the general business and social life of his home city.

The engraving accompanying this article pictures the home life of Caroline Taylor Ransom and DeLos C. Ransom. He has two serial stories (partly read to her in her last sickness) to have her hear bun finish in that land of wholly happy intellectual companionship in which he soon hopes to rejoin her.

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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