J. Quin Converse was born in Champaign County, Ohio, November 8, 1844, being the sixth heir to C. H. Converse and Louisa L. (Ketch) Converse, both from the State of Vermont. At the age of four years, he moved into Union County. Ohio, near Unionville Center, where he resided, working on his father's farm and going to the village school six months in the year, until he was eleven years old, after which he went but three months in the winter, until he was seventeen, which was all the schooling he ever got. On September 11, 1862, he was mustered into the service a a private, in Company I, One Hundred and Twenty-first Regiment Ohio Volunteer Infantry, for three years, unless sooner discharged. Capt. A. B Robinson commanding the company, and Col. W. P. Reed commanding the regiment. The regiment was hurriedly pushed through with inferior arms (Austrian rifles) and poorly equipped, were put into the field and took the baptism of fire at Perrysville (or Chaplin Hills), Ky., October 8, 1862, less than a month from the date of muster. During that fall and winter, he served in all the marches and countermarches over Kentucky to protect supplies from the depredations of the raider Morgan. In February, 1863, he went aboard the "Jacob Strader," at Louisville, and made the trip down the Ohio and up the Cumberland to Nashville, being thirteen days on the boat, in a very crowded condition, there being the two regiments with all their supplies on the one boat. Here he experienced the only sickness of his army life, being for eleven days confined to his bunk. They arrived at Nashville and marched to Franklin, where they stayed for several months and completed the splendid line of defenses which were used with such terrible effect by Gen. Thomas against Hood in the fall of 1864. Mr. Converse served in all the raids and skirmishes that ended in the battle of Chickamauga, on the 19th and 20th of September, 1863, at which battle more than half his comrades were killed or wounded, but he came through with the toe of his shoe cut open with a rifle-ball. He was with Gen. Sherman in the winter march to the relief of Gen. Burnside at Knoxville, and served on the famous Atlanta campaign, in 1864, up to Kenesaw Mountain, when, in an assault, on the 27th of June, he was wounded by a musket ball passing through his cap-box and into his right side, lodging against the right hip, from where it was cut that evening on the field. In this bayonet charge more than half his comrades were killed or wounded. He now went to the rear, and was absent from the regiment four months. thirty days of which he spent at home, where he made the acquaintance of his future wife. He rejoined the regiment in time to make the march to the sea with Gen. Sherman, then up through the Carolinas, ending with the battle of Bentonville, March 19, 1865, where he was at one time cut off and thought it best to surrender, but in the confusion got away. He was at Raleigh, N. C., when Johnston surrendered; marched from there to Washington; participated in the grand review, May 23, 1865; was discharged as Second Duty Sergeant June 9, 1865, and reached home June 17, having served near three years, never missing a single trick of duty, and never being under arrest or reproved by a superior officer. On March 28. 1866, be was married Miss Mary I. Baxter, oldest daughter of William H. and C. D. Baxter, of Urbana, Ohio. He then bought land in York Township, Union County, and worked it several years, but his old wound was a constant drawback on him, and he sold his land and moved to Urbana and worked at the watchmaking bench on repairs for two years, after which he located in Plain City in the jewelry business; has now been here over seven years, and has, by close application, brought his business up from a very small beginning to its present comfortable proportions. He owns real estate in the corporation the value of $2,500 to $3,000. He has but two children living. In politics, he is an Independent Republican, always supporting the best man in all local elections, regardless of party. He has never held any official position whatever. He was Captain of a company of Ohio National Guards for three years, 1878, 1879 and 1880 but the company was disbanded in 1851. He is a member of no religious denomination, being free to admit the good that is in all, but too broad in his ideas of religions liberty to accept the tenets of one to govern him in all things.


From HISTORY OF MADISON COUNTY - W. H. Beers [Chicago, 1883]