Abraham C. Dorsey, farmer, Dresden, Ohio, is a representative of two of the pioneer families of Ohio, and perhaps inherits from them those sterling qualities of push and perseverance which have made him so successful in life. His grandfather, John Dorsey, was born in Virginia and was of English descent.

The tradition of this family is that three brothers emigrated from England to America at a period long antedating the Revolutionary was and from these ancestors sprang men in great numbers who subsequently became prominent in different localities. John Dorsey, the grandfather of our subject, and worthy descendant of his illustrious ancestors, was a substantial farmer and resided in his native state until 1808 when he came to the Buckeye state, settling on a farm near Shannon, now owned by Stockton Frazier. He was married in Virginia to Miss Jemimah Gist, of the same neighborhood, and to them were born these children: Joseph, Michael, Owen, William, John, Honor, Betsey, and Jemimah. Mr. Dorsey's land was covered with heavy timber and with the aid of his sons he cleared the half section he had purchased, erected a good residence, and gave all his sons land. He was a member of the Old School Baptist church and was deacon for many years. He was one of the hard-working pioneer settlers, and lived to be 64 years of age. His son, Joseph Dorsey was born in Virginia in 1796 and when a boy of 14 years came with his parents to Ohio. He assisted his father in clearing up the land and received his education in the pioneer schools. He subsequently returned to Virginia and was there married to Miss Johannah Foster, who, when an old lady, would relate how Mr. Dorsey returned five times to Virginia to see her, before they were married. They had been old schoolmates in Virginia. After marriage they settled on a farm in Cass township, where they resided for a short time, and then moved to the farm now occupied by the widow of John Dorsey. To Mr. and Mrs. Dorsey were born ten children: Benjamin, Jemimah, John, Elizabeth, Abraham, Johannah, Naomi, Joseph, Amelia, and Cecil. Mr. and Mrs. Dorsey were devout members of the Baptist church and Mr. Dorsey was deacon of the same. They were married by the famous Alexander Campbell, the founder of the Campbellite church. In politics, Mr. Dorsey was an Old Line Whig. He died in 1845, at the age of forty-eight years, eight months and a few days. He was a man of upright character, a substantial and enterprising farmer, and a citizen who had the respect of all. His son, Dr. Joseph Dorsey, of Dresden, was a soldier in the Civil war and was in the famous ninety-seventh regiment, serving until cessation of hostilities. Another son, and the subject of the sketch, Abraham C. Dorsey was born in Cass township, Muskingum county, on April 30, 1830, and was educated in the common schools of his day. It was but natural, perhaps that he should select agricultural pursuits for his calling in life, for his ancestors for several generations had been farmers. He married Miss Isabelle Lane, daughter of Jacob and Achsah (Butler) Lane. Mr. Lane was born on a farm in Huntington county, Penn., and was a prosperous and respected man. He came to Ohio with his father,Abraham Lane (whose wife was Mary Morrison), and about 1808 the latter brought his children, seven in number: Jacob, Richard, Abraham, Samuel, Elizabeth, Presotia and Mary. Abraham Lane (the father) settled in Muskingum county, Muskingum township, remained there for a short time and his next settlement was in Monroe township, where he passed the remainder of his days. His second wife, Mary Baker, bore him eight children: George, Jeremiah, Achsah, Sarah, Ellen and three who died in infancy. He was a member of the New School Baptist church. Jacob Lane received a very limited education and worked on a farm for old Capt. Taylor and here he married Miss Achsah Butler, on the 14th of October, 1814. [See sketch of Joshua Butler.] He was drafted in the War of 1812, but as it was toward the close of the war, he saw no active service. His marriage resulted in the birth of nine children: Morris, Jesse, Amos (died in infancy), Ebenezer, Jeremiah (died in infancy), Hezekiah (died in infancy), Helen (died when eight years of age), Elizabeth (died in infancy) and Isabelle. Mr. Lane first settled on the Taylor place, and there remained for a few years. Both of these farms are now owned by our subject. When Mr. Lane first settled on this farm (about 1821) there was not a house south of him within two miles. North of him the first house was at Mile run, one mile south of Dresden and three miles away. There was not a stick cut on the place and he cleared the most of it with his own hands. He was a careful business man, a practical farmer, and a prominent citizen. He owned 519 acres and besides assisted his sons in buying land, giving three of them 100 acres apiece. He had money out on interest and after the death of the widow, when his was settled up, it amount to $19,000. In politics he was formerly an old line whig and later a republican. At the time of death, which occurred February 19, 1872, he was eighty-three years of age. He was entirely a self-made man and all his property was the result of his own hard work. He was of a cheerful, pleasant disposition, thoroughly enjoyed a joke, and was very popular with the young people. Although quick and passionate, he never bore malice and soon forgave an injury. Abraham C. Dorsey settled on the old Lane homestead after marriage, resided there eight years, and then bought a farm near by, the Munson farm, and resided on that ten years. In March, 1872, he moved to the homestead which had been willed to Mrs. Dorsey and which contained 219 acres. Mr. and Mrs. Dorsey's marriage was blessed by the birth of six children: Salathial, Florida J., James L., Achsah, Johannah and George B. Mr. and Mrs. Dorsey are members of the Old School Baptist church, and he has been deacon for about fifteen years. He is now the owner of 339 acres of land has given his sons 176 acres. Salathial married Miss Sarah B. McCann and became the father of three children: Nellie I. J., Loulie A., and Charles T. He is farming in Perry township. He is interested in educational matters and held the office of school director for some time. He was justice of the peace in Perry township for three years, and although a republican, he was elected to the office by democrats. Mr. Dorsey is a good penman and possesses excellent business acumen. James married Miss Lora King and has three children: Alma, B.F. and Brice. He is farming in Colorado and doing well. Achsah married John W. Wirick, a farmer of Knox county, Ohio, and they have one child, an infant, unnamed. The remainder of the family are at home. The Dorsey family is one of the best in the county and Mr. Dorsey is well-known for his kind, genial disposition, and his interest in all good work. He is now sixty-two years old and his wife a few years younger. Her mother, Mrs. Lane, was the seventh daughter of the seventh daughter and was supposed to possess great healing powers. Mrs. Dorsey was born, reared, and has lived all he days on the same farm -nearly sixty years on the old homestead that has been in the family about seventy-one years. When Mr. Dorsey was twenty-three years of age, 1852, he assisted in driving a herd of 110 cattle from Dresden across the Alleghany mountains to Philadelphia, and was from May 10 until July 1 in making the trip. He attended the Centennial exposition at Philadelphia and also visited Washington, D.C. when a young man of twenty-one, he visited Indiana and bought 160 acres of land. This land he finally disposed of.


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