One of the younger farmers of Fayette county who is making a name for himself as a successful tiller of the soil is Ralph Allen, of Concord township. Starting out as a renter eleven years ago, he now rents his father's farm of two hundred and fourteen acres. He has already gained a comfortable position in life, which is proof that it is possible for the average man to do likewise. The chief difficulty with most men is the lack of definite plans or the lack of energy to carry out their plans after they are once made.
Ralph Allen, the son of James H. and Ellen (Rankin) Allen, was born May 7, 1881, in Milledgeville. Ohio. His father was born in West Lancaster, Ohio, the son of Ethan, a native of Vermont, and a soldier of the War of 1812. J. H. Allen and wife were the parents of four children: Glenn, who married Emma Wilson; Ralph, with whom this narrative deals; Flora, single; Mabel, who married Arthur McCoy.
Ralph Allen attended the schools at Octa, Wabash and Buckeye in Fayette county and receivcd a good common school education. This has been supplemented with wide reading since he left the school room, so that he is now well informed on all the main questions before the American people today. He began farming for himself immediately after his marriage and takes a commendable pride in keeping everything about the farm in good repair and has thus gained the reputation of being a careful and conscientious farmer. He raises all of the crops usually grown in this section of the state and gives a due share of his attention to the breeding of live stock.
Mr. Allen was married on New Year's day. 1903, to Mary Myrtle Stafford, the daughter of Charles and Mary (Johnson) Stafford. To this union has been born one son, Charles H., November 13, 1904. Fraternally, Mr. Allen is a member of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows and the encampment as well. He is a genial, affable and pleasant man to meet and is well deserving of the high esteem in which he is universally held by his friends and acquaintances.
The late Abel H. Janes was horn February 11, 1839, in Jefferson township, Fayette county, Ohio, and died in Jasper township on August 17, 1910. He was the son of William P. and Mary (Mock) Janes, natives of Virginia and early settlers in Ross county. Ohio. EIeven children were born to William P. Janes and wife: Oliver, Clarissa, Johanna, Marjorie, Abel, Levi, Catherine, Ellen, John, Rosetta, Oliva and Douglas. All of these children, except Rosetta and Mary Catherine, have passed to their reward, after living lives of usefulness and honor.
Abel H. Janes was educated in the schools of Jefferson township and was working on his father's farm when the Civil war broke out. He first enlisted in 1862 in the Sixtieth Regiment Ohio Volunteer Infantry, as a member of Company C. He served two years as a member of this regiment and was then taken prisoner at Harper's Ferry and cast into a Southern prison, but was eventually exchanged and honorably mustered out of the service. However, he wished to serve his country, and accordingly re-enlisted in the One Hundred and Sixty-eighth Regiment Ohio Volunteer Infantry, and was the second time captured bt the Confederates at Cynthiana and was then paroled and came home, being for the second time mustered out of the service. Immediately after the close of the war, he returned to this county and worked out by the month for a time. He was married in 1867 and he and his wife worked hard in order to save money to pay for the farm which they bought, but their efforts were rewarded very substantially and they gradually added to their land holdings until they owned a fine farm of two hundred and eight acres in Jefferson and Jasper townships.
Mr. Janes was married February 7, 1867, to Almeda Hays, the daughter of Morgan Hays, of Paint township, and to this union five children were born: William M., Cass G., Jennie P.. Chester H., and Scott P. William M. married Margaret McMonagil and has three ciiildren, Carmel, Clarence and Luther; Cass G. married Alice White and has three children, Florence, John L. and Leonard C.: Jennie P. is the wife of Clyde Allen; Chester H. married Mary Allen and has four children, Lucile, Carl, Helen and Janice; Scott P. is deceased and is buried in the Fairview cemetery.
Mr. Janes was a stalwart Republican all his life and was always deeply interested in the success of his party, although never a candidate for public office. Fraternally. he was a member of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, and he and his wife were both members of the Daughters of Rebekah. He was also a member of the Brotherhood of American Yeoman, belonging to the lodge at Milledgeville. this county. Mr. Janes was a man of force of character and enjoyed a high degree of popularity in the community where he spent his whole life. He was essentially a self-made man, knew no such thing as idleness, and was ever ready to assist his friends and neighbors who were not so fortunate as himself.
From History of Fayette County Ohio - Her People, Industries and Institutions by Frank M. Allen (1914, R. F. Bowen & Company, Inc.)