Biography of S. L. Stockstill
Miami County, Ohio Biographies

S. L. STOCKSTILL, farmer; P. 0. New Carlisle. Clark Co.; born in Bethel Township, Miami Co., Ohio, Aug. 27, 1817; is the son of Thomas and Catharine Stockstill. He was one of the very early settlers of this county; his native State was Maryland, but when quite young he removed to Tennessee with his father, who was a speculator in slaves. Thomas, being conscientiously opposed to the slave traffic, left Tennessee at the age of 16, and came to Ohio. At this time, there were only five or six huts in Cincinnati, and a very few between that and Dayton, which then consisted of one cabin, in which a man by the name of Acres kept a store, and carried on quite a traffic with the Indians. Northeast of Dayton for a distance of twelve miles, there was not a house, and no road but an Indian trail. He stopped with old man Hain, an acquaintance of his from North Carolina, located in what is now Bethel Township, Clark Co.; his wealth then consisted in a horse, saddle, saddle bags, a few chisels, two gimlets and a broad ax; he never served an apprenticeship at any trade, but was handy with tools and did a considerable amount of work in wood, and at shoemaking; he made the first coffins used in this part of the country. In those days, it would have been thought sinful to make any charge for services of that kind, so that he has made many coffins without charge; his chief business was farming, and after his arrival in this State he took a lease for twelve years of Leonard Hain, whose daughter Catharine he married about 1801; in 1806, he left his lease and bought 80 acres in Bethel Township, Miami Co., and once more commenced in the woods. In addition to clearing up his farm, he bought 120 acres more. He was a strict Methodist, and aided almost any church of that faith within his reach. Eight of his children grew to maturity - Elias, Rachel, Sarah, Susan, John N., Stephen L., Irvin J. and Catharine. Our subject has always followed farming; in connection with his farm work, he has made several useful inventions, as he felt a need for the several articles invented. His first was a grain drill, the distributing principle of which is now used in the Superior Drill, built at Springfield, and others. His other patents were for a clover harvester, for heading clover in the field; a riding attachment for breaking plows, and a meat cutter. His livelihood has been gained principally by the sale of these patents. On the 18th of February, 1847, he married Mary S. Lucas, a native of Clark Co., born June 4, 1826; by this union they have had nine children - James A., Catharine O., Chalmers T., Nannie C., Insco H. (deceased), Maggie M., Summerfield S., Minnie J. and Etta B.

History of Miami County, Ohio
Published by: W. H. Beers and Co.
Chicago 1880

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