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Below is a family biography included in the Biographical Annals of Montgomery County, Pennsylvania published in 1904 by T. S. Benham & Company and The Lewis Publishing Company; Elwood Roberts, Editor.  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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I. N. BUCKWALTER, Vice-President and Superintendent of the Buckwalter Stove Works at Royersford, Pennsylvania, is a native of Chester county, Pennsylvania, where he was born November 24, 1838.

Although reared to farm pursuits, young Buckwalter gained an insight into mechanical occupations by means of a saw mill and machine shop to which he had access. He received his education at the ordinary schools of the vicinity in which he lived. He remained under the parental roof until he was twenty-two years of age. Then, about 1861, he went to California, did some prospecting, spending a year or more in mining and as much more time on a ranch, returning to his home in 1864, and again taking charge of the saw mill and machine shop. After two years he made a second trip west, going, however, no further than Illinois, where he was employed as a carpenter about a year, when he again returned to the mill and shop. A little later he went to Kansas, pre-empted one hundred and sixty acres of land, made improvements and did some farming on his new acquisition, remaining three years, at the end of which time he returned to his home. While he was west he built a house in Burlington, Kansas. In 1872 he went to Royersford, Pennsylvania, and was employed at the Francis Buckwalter Stove Works, continuing with that firm until 1883, when various firm changes ensued, ending in incorporation as the Buckwalter Stove Company, when I. N. Buckwalter became a partner. He was foreman of the mounting department, and so continued until 1899, when he was made superintendent. Joseph A. Buckwalter is president; I. N. Buckwalter, vice-president and superintendent; A. L. Buckwalter, assistant superintendent; Augustus Dotterer, secretary; T. D. Buckwalter, treasurer. The establishment has a large output of stoves and ranges, about fifteen thousand annually, and their products have a high reputation for excellence, not surpassed by any in the state or country. The number of employes is about one hundred and seventy-five, and the company have repositories for their goods where they are on sale in Philadelphia, New York and Chicago. The company is known all over the United States, and it has contributed very materially in the building up of Royersford.

Mr. Buckwalter inherited mechanical genius from his ancestors, he being descended from a long line of mechanics and machinists. The present generation, including I. N. Buckwalter, have brought the name prominently before the public throughout the entire country. (See J. A. Buckwalter’s sketch, in another part of this work for a more complete account of the Buckwalter Stove Works).

Isaac N. Buckwalter married, in 1875, Miss Irene F. Buckwalter, she being a daughter of Daniel R. and Hannah R. (Williams) Buckwalter, the mother being of Montgomery, and the father of Chester county. They were married at Phoenixville. He had a large farm which he later sold, and bought a small farm at Spring City. The latter part of his life he was employed with the Buckwalter Stove Company. Early in life he was a farmer. Daniel R. Buckwalter’s parents were Daniel and Mary (Roudenbush) Buckwalter, both of whom were members of the Mennonite church. Their children: Mary (Mrs. M. Schrack; Samuel, Sarah (Mrs. D. Yost); David; Barbara (Mrs. Zimmerman). Of these Daniel (father of Mrs. I. N. Buckwalter), was a Republican in politics and a member of the Lutheran church. He died several years ago, but his wife yet survives, at an advanced age, residing at Royersford. She was the daughter of Samuel and Maria (Richards) Williams. Their children: Hannah R. (mother), Charles, Samuel, Maria (Mrs. Sassaman); John, Eliza (Mrs. Walker); Emma (Mrs. C. Spare); Mary (unmarried). The parents were Friends.

The children of Daniel and Hannah Buckwalter: Samuel W., died in 1901; Clara (Mrs.E. Moore, who died leaving one daughter, Phoebe); Irene F., (wife of Isaac N. Buckwalter); Crawford A., deceased; Maria J. (Mrs. B. B. Brant); Anna (Mrs. William Melotte); Theodore, of Royersford.

Mr. and Mrs. I. N. Buckwalter have two children: Madge W. S., who was educated in the schools of Royersford and Shisler’s Business College of Norristown; and Samuel Emmet, who is teller of the Royersford National Bank. Isaac N. Buckwalter is the son of Abram and Rachel (Ortlip) Buckwalter, he of a Montgomery and she of a Chester county family. Mrs. Buckwalter (mother) was a daughter of Henry Ortlip, who operated the old Ortlip mill, a well-known structure in its day. For many years he kept the Black Horse hotel at Shannonville, now Audubon. He died on his farm near Norristown. His children: Henry, Andrew; Abram, Osmun, Samuel, died and left a son, who is also deceased; Rachel (mother of I. N. Buckwalter); Mary (Mrs. Osmond); Rebecca (Mrs. Minter); Eliza (Mrs. G. Eppehimer); Julia (Mrs. J. Teany).

Abram and Rachel Buckwalter’s children: Elias, died at the age of twenty-two years; David R., died at the age of seventeen years; Henry, one of the original Buckwalter firm, who started the stove works, who died in May, 1880, leaving a widow and seven children; B. F., died unmarried; J. A., president of the Buckwalter Stove Company; I. N., subject of this sketch; L. C., machinist of the Stove Company; four other children died when quite young. Both parents belonged to the Spiritualists. The father died at eighty years of age; the mother at ninety-three.

Abram Buckwalter (father) was born near Trappe. The first of the family in America came from Holland to Pennsylvania. Abram married and located in Chester county. He was a mill-wright, and an excellent mechanic, owning and operating a saw mill and machine shop for many years, and thus educating his children to the exercise and cultivation of inventive genius which proved exceedingly valuable to them in after years. Abram Buckwalter was a very active temperance worker. He started the pledge with his own name, and had over seven hundred names enrolled in an incredibly short space of time, showing what can be done by earnestness and enthusiasm. The original pledge or roll is still in the possession of the family, being kept as a memento of their father’s work for the good of humanity.

Isaac N. Buckwalter is a worthy son of such a sire, as are all the others. He is public spirited and a thoroughgoing business man, exerting himself for the benefit of Royersford in every possible way. He, in common with the other members of the Company, has accomplished much in building up the town and advancing its prosperity. Mr. Buckwalter built the large brick house in which he resides, and in 1896 altered and constructed what is now known as the Buckwalter Block. He is a Republican in politics, although in the past he affiliated with the Greenback party. He has served three years as a member of town council. He is an active member of the Royersford Fire Company, a stockholder in both banks, and is otherwise identified with the interests of the community in which he lives. He and Mrs. Buckwalter are both Spiritualists in religious faith.

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This family biography is one of more than 1,000 biographies included in the Biographical Annals of Montgomery County, Pennsylvania published in 1904 by T. S. Benham & Company and The Lewis Publishing Company.  For the complete description, click here: Biographical Annals of Montgomery County, Pennsylvania

View additional Montgomery County, Pennsylvania family biographies here: Montgomery County, Pennsylvania Biographies

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