Squire Daniel D. McGinnis, Dresden, Ohio, is numbered among the prominent farmers of Cass township, and is one of the old and respected citizens. He was born March 16, 1822, in Fayette county, Penn., and was of Scotch-Irish descent. His great-grandfather, John McGinnis, came from Ireland to the United States when quite advanced in years. He had been connected with the Irish rebellion and obliged to leave his country. Of the thirteen children born to his marriage nine were sons, and the ones now remembered are: John, Hymus, Samuel, Daniel, Hannah, Elizabeth, and Mary. A number of the children not named settled in Baltimore, Md. Mr. McGinnis lived to be eighty-fours years of age, and died near Lancaster, where he was a large land owner. He was a Scotch Presbyterian in his religious belief. His son, Daniel McGinnis, grandfather of our subject, was born in Scotland, but went to County Tyrone, Ireland, when a boy, with his brothers, John, Hymus, and Samuel, and his sisters, Hannah and Elizabeth, all of whom came to America before the father and settled in Philadelphia. There they remained but a few years, and then settled on land near Lancaster, Penn. There Daniel received a good common-school education, and learning to read and talk both German and English. At an early date he settled in Fayette county, Penn., when that country was an unbroken wilderness, and the Indians were plentiful and very troublesome. Daniel was an Indian fighter and had many desperate encounters with them. While working he always had his rifle near him, and often left his work to chase them when they were more troublesome than usual. The settlers, when attacked, or threatened with an attack, would seek shelter in a block house (called the Three Cabins Block House), and at one time they remained there all winter. They were attacked several times by the savages but succeeded in repulsing them, and the Indians revenged themselves by driving off the stock and burning the cabins. In the spring the troops, under Col. Dunbar or Col. Mountz, came to their relief, and the Indians were driven from the country. Daniel McGinnis's sister, Hannah, was in the Block House, and being an unusually strong woman, could handle a rifle as well as a man, and took a prominent part in driving off the Indians in the attack on the Block House, rendering valuable assistance in that way. She was a fearless horseback rider, and could mount a horse bareback without assistance, springing from the ground. She was a noted frontier character and married Samuel Crozier. She could do a man's work, and her husband became a successful and prosperous farmer. After his death she carried on the farm with great vigor. Daniel McGinnis married Annie Lynch, daughter of Robert Lynch, and to them were born George, Samuel, Robert, Mary, Hannah and Elizabeth. Mr. McGinnis served in the War of 1812, as did also his brothers, Hymus and John. He was large and strong, and was an artilleryman. He was pushing the gun to get it in position to load, when a cannon from the enemy struck the gun carriage, demolished it and threw it upon Mr. McGinnis, who remained senseless until the next morning, when he was brought to consciousness by the rain in his face. He was in the hospital for some time, and for nearly a year he was disabled. He was crippled for life, did not again enter the service, and received a pension from the government. He became a farmer, was hardworking and industrious, and was the owner of 300 acres of land. He was a member of the Presbyterian church, was respected and esteemed by all, and lived to ninety-four years of age, retaining his mental faculties to the last. His son, George McGinnis, father of subject, was a native of Fayette county, Penn., born on the old homestead on January 28, 1797. This property is still held by the McGinnises. George McGinnis' educational advantages were very good, for he had an excellent teacher, a Mr. Paxton, who was educated in Glasgow, Scotland, and who taught a subscription school near Daniel McGinnis' for twenty-one years in the same building. George McGinnis learned readily, and thus became a well educated man. He was married on January 5, 1821, in Fayette county, to Miss Mary Wood, who was born May 3, 1805, who was the daughter of Abinah and Susannah (Humphrey) Wood, the former an American of English Irish descent. Mr. Wood was an only child and served through the Revolutionary war, being in several of the prominent battles. He became a soldier at the early age of fourteen, and was away from his parents seven years. His father had been to Camden, and there learned that Washington was in need of men. Returning home during the night he and wife talked the matter over, and decided that their boy would better go. How to provide clothing for him the question, for he had but one suit of homemade linen. With the help of neighbor women they wove enough for a new suit, and made it the next day. Abinah, although but fourteen years of age, was a large, strong, bony youth, almost as strong as a man, and provided with his new suit and a linen knapsack, he started out the next day. On the way to the cap he met a neighbor boy of about the same age (Sam Bunton), and he was joined by the latter, who had nothing with the homespun suit he had on. Abinah gave him his new suit, and they proceeded to camp. They served together seven years and became fast friends. Sam Bunton never married, but made his home with Mr. Wood until his death. When Abinah reached home, after seven years' service, he was not recognized by his mother, who had not heard from him during the entire time. He was a shipbuilder and carpenter by trade, and followed the same in Pittsburg, during the latter part of his life. He was comfortably well off, and lived to be ninety-six years of age, attending his business up to the last day of his life. He died suddenly after dinner, having worked during that forenoon. He had never lost a week from work. Mr. Wood was a member of the Methodist church, and was a class-leader in the same. Of the thirteen children born to this marriage several are settled in Pittsburg. After his marriage George McGinnis settled in Tyrone township, Fayette county, Penn., followed farming and boatbuilding, and here passed the closing scenes of his life, dying when seventy years of age. He was a member of the Masonic fraternity, and he and wife held membership in the Presbyterian and Methodist churches, respectively. His children were: Daniel D., Abinah W., Susannah, Samuel H., Jonathan, Hannah, Burris, Elizabeth, Robert, Ellen, Mary J. and John. Mr. McGinnis was a man of moderate means, and his integrity and uprightness of character were never questioned. His son, and the subject of this sketch, Daniel D. McGinnis, secured a good common-school education in his native county, and learned the cooper's trade and boatbuilding. In 1844, he came to Ohio, resided at Frazeysburg one year, and was then married Miss Maria Morgan, daughter of James and Susannah (Lovett) Morgan. Her father was one of the first settlers of Jackson township, locating there in 1805, and became one of the substantial farmers. He owned 600 acres of land in this county and 240 acres in Indiana, and gave his children all good farms. His death occurred when he was seventy-six years of age. He held a number of local offices, and was a prominent man. Of the eleven children born to his marriage the following lived to be grown: Eva L., Washington, Maria, Martha J., Mary E. and La Fayette. Mr. Morgan was a member of the Old School Baptist church, and a man of high moral character. He was a soldier, under Col. Cass, in the War of 1812, but as there were more men than were needed he received his discharge. After marriage Mr. McGinnis settled on the farm where he now lives, and now has 160 acres of excellent land. His marriage was blessed by the birth of five living children: James M., George W., Mary E., John S., and Tirzah. Mr. and Mrs. McGinnis are active members of the Disciple church, and he has been elder for many years. In politics he is a strong democrat. Mrs. McGinnis has held the office justice of the peace for eighteen years, has been assessor of chattels two terms, township trustee three terms, township clerk sixteen years, and real estate assessor two terms. He is also interested in educational matters and served on the school board many years. When single he taught school for seven years in his native state and in Cass township, and was an able and successful educator. Squire McGinnis stands deservedly high as an honorable and respected man.


Biographical and Historical Memoirs of Muskingum County, Ohio: Chicago, 1892: The Goodspeed Publishing Co.