My Genealogy Hound

Below is a family biography included in Portrait and Biographical Album of Greene and Clark Counties, Ohio published by Chapman Bros., in 1890.  These biographies are valuable for genealogy research in discovering missing ancestors or filling in the details of a family tree. Family biographies often include far more information than can be found in a census record or obituary.  Details will vary with each biography but will often include the date and place of birth, parent names including mothers' maiden name, name of wife including maiden name, her parents' names, name of children (including spouses if married), former places of residence, occupation details, military service, church and social organization affiliations, and more.  There are often ancestry details included that cannot be found in any other type of genealogical record.

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JENIAH F. ST. JOHN. There is unquestionably a certain dignity attached to the man who maintains his residence upon the spot where he was born. Mr. St. John first opened his eyes to the light under the roof where he now resides, June 27, 1842. His parents were among the earliest settlers of Caesar’s Creek Township, Greene County, they being Daniel W. and Eliza (Bone) St. John, the former of whom was born in 1805 near Lebanon, this State.

The father of our subject was reared to manhood in his native township and after his marriage located in Caesar’s Creek Township, this county, where he had secured one hundred and twelve acres of new land. He was more than ordinarily prosperous as a tiller of the soil and invested his capital in additional land, becoming owner of four other farms and his possessions finally aggregating five hundred and thirty acres. In the spring of 1864 he left the old farm and located on one hundred and sixty acres of land near the city of Xenia. He was a very enterprising and progressive spirited man and was among the first breeders of Shorthorn cattle in this section of country. He put up a brick residence in Caesar’s Creek Township in 1841, one of the first structures of the kind in the township and which is now occupied by his son, our subject.

Daniel W. St. John was a man of devoted piety, a prominent member of the Methodist Episcopal Church, filling many of its offices and officiating as Class-Leader for many years. At an early date he became a life member of the Missionary Association and was a liberal giver to all worthy objects. During the existence of the old Whig party he was one of its stanchest adherents but upon its abandonment he allied himself with the Republicans. He departed this life at the old home in Xenia Township in February, 1872. His father, John St. John, the paternal grandfather of our subject, was a native of Vermont, whence he emigrated to Warren County, Ohio, about 1800. Subsequently he served in the War of 1812. He was married and reared a large family of children and made for himself the record of an honest man and a good citizen. The St. John family is of French descent and was first represented in America probably during the Colonial days.

The subject of this notice remained under the parental roof during the years of his early youth and manhood and until after the outbreak of the Civil War. He finally concluded that it was his duty to assist in the preservation of the Union and accordingly enlisted October 18, 1861, in Company A, Seventy-fourth Ohio Infantry. He first went with his regiment to Columbus, and participated in many important battles, being at Ft. Henry, Neal’s Bend, Nashville, (November 2, 1862) Stone River, Hoover’s Leap, Tullahoma and Dry Gap, Ga. He was also at Chickamauga, Mission Ridge, Tunnell Hill, Dalton, Resaca, Dallas Gap, Pine Mountain, Peach Tree Creek, Chattahoochie, Atlanta, Jonesboro, Savannah, Bentonville, Goldsboro and Raleigh. Although experiencing many hairbreadth escapes he was never wounded or captured and never failed to report for duty. He enlisted as a private and was mustered out as Orderly Sergeant which rank he had held about four months. He had the satisfaction of witnessing and participating in the Grand Review at Washington and then going to Louisville, Ky., was given an honorable discharge, July 10, 1865. His first term of enlistment expired December 31, 1863, when he veteranized and re-entered the ranks.

Upon leaving the army Mr. St. John returned to his old home and engaged in farming. In the spring of 1866 he took up his residence at the old homestead where he has since lived. He is now the owner of one hundred and three well-tilled acres and makes a specialty of cattle and swine. He has been an active Republican all his life. In the spring of 1887 he was elected Township Trustee and in the spring of 1800 was re-elected by an increased majority.

Mr. St. John contracted matrimonial ties August 23, 1866, being wedded to Miss Mary E. Hook. This lady was born near Xenia, April 26, 1843, to Louis and Minerva (Lloyd) Hook, who were likewise natives of Xenia Township and the father a farmer by occupation. Charles Hook, an uncle of Mrs. St. John, is represented on another page in this work. Her mother was a daughter of John Lloyd who married Sophia O. Wright. They were both natives of Virginia and came to this county in their youth with their respective parents. Mr. Lloyd engaged in farming and became well-to-do. He was born in Dinwiddie County, Va., May 28, 1785, and died at his home south of the city of Xenia, April 23, 1872. His wife survived him a year. Grandfather Lloyd served in the War of 1812. He was the son of Rev. Lewis Lloyd, a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church who settled first in Sussex County, Va., and thence in 1805 came to the young State of Ohio, locating in this county. John Lloyd was an active and devoted Christian and labored as he had opportunity to further the Master’s cause.

Mrs. St. John was the third in a family of two sons and three daughters, and by her union with our subject became the mother of nine children. These were named respectively, Clarence S., Lewis E., Walter C., Mary E., Amy E., Robert E., (deceased), James G., Julia, Maude and Clara L. Mr. and Mrs. St. John are leading members of the Methodist Episcopal Church.

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This family biography is one of the many biographies included in Portrait and Biographical Album of Greene and Clark Counties, Ohio published by Chapman Bros., in 1890. 

View additional Greene County, Ohio family biographies here: Greene County, Ohio Biographies

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