Biography of Stephen Watson
Madison County, Ohio Biographies





STEPHEN WATSON, President of the Madison National Bank, and Acting President of the London Exchange Bank, was born in Union (now Paint) Township, Madison County, June 4, 1827. His father, David Watson, was born in Maryland October 17, 1783. He was a son of Walter Watson, also a native of Eastern Maryland, who was one of six brothers, said to be the smallest, and his average weight was 235 pounds. After David's birth, he moved to Virginia, and came to Ohio in 1806. He located in Ross County, near Chillicothe, and one year later moved to this county. David came to Madison County in 1805, to help his father in law, Peter P. Helpinstine, in surveying. Mr. Helphinstine's father was a Major in the Revolutionary war, and had a land want calling for 5,011 acres. His son, our subject's father, came along to survey it. They laid it out in three places on Oak Run, Walnut Run, and Deer Creek. After the land was divided there were 100 acres overplus, which Mr. Watson purchased at $2 per acre, giving in exchange a horse valued at $100, and a watch valued at $20, and owing the balance. In 1807, he settled on the land in Madison County, boarding with Jonathan and Eleanor Minshall, his brother in law and sister, until a cabin was built on his land by friendly neighbors. His wife was Mary Helphinstine, a native of Frederick County, Va., who died in 1852. Mr. Watson was a farmer and stock raiser through life, and died in April, 1870. They had twelve children, five sons and seven daughters, of whom only tour, two daughters and two sons. are living, viz.: Susannah, wife of Wesley Yocums, of Champaign County, Ohio; Isabella, wife of A. H. Nixon, a wholesale tobacco dealer of Dayton, Ohio. Our subject, the eighth child and fourth son; and David, one of the County Commissioners, residing on the old homestead, in Paint Township. Our subject was reared on the home farm, and received his early education, which was limited, in a log schoolhouse on his father's farm. When twenty two years of age, he purchased, with his brother Samuel, 258 acres of land, which they kept three years and then sold it at an advance of $3,000. With the proceeds, he purchased 145 acres, to which he has since added until he now owns about 600 acres. He was engaged in farming and stock raising until 1871. In 1868, he came to London, and purchased his present residence. He and Mr. Charles R. Cover engaged in the business of brokers on November 9, 1869, and have been engaged in it since. On July 1, 1870, a stock company was formed and bought the Madison County Bank of Addison Shanklin and Robert Boyd. Mr. Watson was appointed Vice President, and the name of the bank changed to the Exchange Bank. He has since been Acting President. In June, 1880, he was elected President of the Madison National Bank. He is a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church, and a trustee and treasurer of the church at London. On December 23, 1852, he was married to Elmira, daughter of John Dungan.

From:
History of Madison County, Ohio
Published by: W. H. Beers and Company
Chicago, Illinois
1883


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