No name is more worthy of honor and distinction in the annals of Pickaway County than that of Boggs, which is inseparably linked with its rise and growth from the very first days of its settlement to the present time. It is one of the members of this family whose portrait and life sketch are here presented, Lemuel Boggs being one of the fourth generation of its representatives that have had their homes in this beautiful and highly favored region. He is a native of the county, born in Pickaway Township January 16, 1845; is a leader in its business and financial circles, is one of its most successful farmers, and is a conspicuous figure in its public and political life.


Our subject is descended from an old Virginia family. His grandfather, Maj. John Boggs, was a son of John and Jane (Irwin) Boggs, who lived on a small stream in Virginia that empties into the Ohio, and is called Boggs' Run. During the time of the Indian troubles, the family took refuge in the fort at Wheeling. Prior to that, the Indians had surprised and captured the eldest son, William, within sight of the other members of the terror-stricken family, whom the red-skins intended to capture too, or to massacre; but upon questioning the boy, whom they had conveyed to a place of security, he told them that there were seven or eight men at the house, and so saved his friends, as the Indians considered that too great a number for them to attack. They believed the lad 's story, as they had seen several men about the farm engaged in harvesting, and supposed that they slept at the house at night, which was by no means the case, the father being the only man there.


The capture of the Major's brother occurred in 1781 or 1782, when the Major was but six years old. The brave boy was taken to West Liberty, near the present site of Urbana, Ohio, where he was detained about nineteen months, and then exchanged and sent home. His father did not recognize him in his Indian habiliments, even after an extended conversation with him. Another son of John and Jane Boggs was killed on Ohio soil, opposite Wheeling, by the Indians. He was returning from a hunting expedition, with half a dozen comrades, and they were encamped for the night, when the savages stole upon them and fired into their midst as they slept. Young Boggs was wounded, but, sitting crippled on the ground, made a desperate fight before he was finally dispatched with a tomahawk, his companions escaping in the meantime.


Maj. John Boggs was born May 10, 1775, and came to Pickaway County in 1798. His party floated down the Ohio River on a keel-boat to the mouth of the Scioto, and from there went by barge up the latter stream to the station below Chillicothe. At that place, they left their boat, and proceeded towards the source of the stream on foot, to a point within the present limits of Greene Township, Ross County, from which they could look far up the valley upon a scene of the richest and most peaceful loveliness. Little did they dream of the teeming life that that lovely and fertile valley would one day hold, or of the signs of industry, wealth, culture and happiness it was destined to display.


The Boggs family found that some pioneer had been before them in selecting land in that region, and as in the ethics of the early settlers it was considered highly dishonorable to locate where another had made a beginning, however small, they continued their course up the stream to the Pickaway Plains, where John Boggs, Sr., selected a site, and subsequently entered six hundred and forty acres of land. His son, the Major, went up the Congo to the place where stands the Logan Elm, beneath whose boughs Logan, Chief of the Mingos, made his famous speech, when Lord Dunmore, Royal Governor of Virginia, in 1774, concluded the treaty of peace with the Indians, whereby the Northwest Territory was thrown open for settlement.


After selecting a suitable location for his future home, and preparing a rude dwelling, Maj. Boggs returned to Boggs' Run, Ohio County, Va., and was there married in the year 1800 to Sarah McMecken. He brought her back with him to the spot he had chosen for their habitation, and here they dwelt in peace and plenty for many years, and reared a large family of children, nine in number, namely: William, Jane, Lemuel, John, Nancy, Lydia, Moses, James, and Sydney, all of whom are deceased. The Major was a man of very industrious habits, who did with a will whatever he undertook, and toiled early and late in the work of clearing a farm, working patiently against many disadvantages to make improvements, but with ultimate success. In time, he became one of the wealthiest men of the county, accumulating a valuable property, including eighteen hundred acres of land in Pickaway Township, and two thousand acres in Indiana, beside his personal effects. The humble log cabin in which he and his wife first began their wedded life he replaced by a more commodious residence, built probably in 1816, and still standing in a good state of preservation. Soon after settling here, he erected a flouring-mill near the mouth of Scipio Creek, which was the first gristmill in the Scioto Valley north of Chillicothe, and was known for many years as Boggs' Mill.


In 1810, Maj. Boggs commenced boating, and took the first load of flour to New Orleans that was ever sent out of the Scioto Valley. He made three trips to the Crescent City, and returned on foot or on horseback, having to pass through the country of the Indians, and to keep a sharp lookout for robbers in all parts of the journey. He met with no mishap or bodily harm, and with but one loss of money. That was when a tavernkeeper, with whom he and his friend, Daniel Crouse, stopped, picked the lock of his saddlebags and took from them $300 in silver, with which he paid a debt to Crouse. The Major did not discover his loss until he arrived at home; but, though the tavern-keeper, to whom he applied for information, acknowledged his guilt, he never recovered the money.


Maj. Boggs received his title for active service in the War of 1812. He was a man who was universally respected, and, though not a member of any church, was a warm friend to religion, and contributed liberally to aid its progress. He was a Democrat, and a great admirer of "Old Hickory." He died February 6, 1862, at the home of his son Moses, that date being the anniversary of his father's death, Februaiy 6, 1827, and it is a curious fact that they had attained nearly the same age at the time of death, for had they lived until their next birthday they would have been eighty-seven years old. Maj. Boggs had been twice married. His first wife died December 31, 1851, and he subsequently married her sister, Mrs. Jane Taylor, in Zanesville. He had been living in that place a number of years, when he was taken sick, and he then returned to Pickaway County "to die," as he said.


Moses Boggs, the father of our subject, was the third son, and seventh child, of Maj. John Boggs, and was the last of the family born in the old log cabin which his father built on Congo Creek, near the Logan Elm, the date of his birth being August 27, 1814. He became a farmer and large  landholder, having about twelve hundred acres, and he also dealt in stock to a considerable extent. August 3, 1841, he was married to Miss Margaret S., daughter of Judge Cook, of Ross County. His death occurred December 7, 1865, when he was not much past the meridian of life. His wife died in 1887, aged seventy years. The following of their seven children are living: John M., a graduate of the Ohio Wesleyan University, a prominent farmer, residing near La Fayette, Ind., and President of the Indiana State Board of Agriculture; Scott, a farmer of Pickaway Township, who is mentioned elsewhere in this volume; William, a graduate of the Ohio Wesleyan University, and now a farmer, residing near La Fayette, Ind., and Sarah T.


 Sarah T. Boggs is an intelligent and highly cultured lady, who has been liberally educated. She attended a select school at Chillicothe some time during her girlhood. In 1872, she entered Cornell College, at Mt. Vernon, Iowa, where she was closely engaged in scientific studies for two years. After she left college her mind was further broadened by travel, as she journeyed with her mother, who had poor health, for several years. She has resided at Kingston since 1885, where she has a pleasant home. She is wealthy, and an extensive landowner, having one thousand and forty-five acres of land in Pickaway Township, of which five hundred and eighty are located on the Scioto Bottoms. The boyhood days of Lemuel Boggs were passed on his father's farm. He was given every advantage to obtain a fine education, laying its foundation in the local district school, afterwards pursuing his studies at Mt. Pleasant Academy, at Kingston, and finally graduating with honor from the scientific course at the Wesleyan University, in 1866. When his college days were over, he returned home, and immediately took up farming and stock-raising. He has four hundred and fifty acres of very fine land in his home farm in Pickaaway Township, known as Elmwood, which is a beautiful and sightly place. His large brick residence stands on a high elevation in the midst of a fine grove of forest trees, and other commodious buildings adorn the place. He also has three hundred and thirty acres in Perry Township, and handles a good deal of stock, besides dealing extensively in grain. In 1876, he built an elevator at Elmwood, a station on the Norfolk &: Western Railway a few rods from his residence, and has bought and shipped large quantities of grain ever since, as he is surrounded by one of the most productive corn and wheat regions in the State.


Mr. Boggs has, on several occasions, served as executor of estates some of them very large. He was executor for that of his uncle, the late John Boggs, which was one of the largest ever settled in this county. It comprised large personal interests and about nine thousand acres of land, nearly three thousand of which were located in Pickaway County. Our subject settled up his father's estate, too, and has been actively engaged in business affairs ever since. In 1883, he assisted in organizing the Scioto Valley Bank, at Kingston, and has served as its President ever since 1885, his vigorous and healthy administration of its affairs making it a powerful factor in local financial circles. He is a thorough business man, is possessed of fine social qualities, and stands high in the estimation of all who know him, and his friends and acquaintances are many.


In 1870, Mr, Boggs was married to Miss .Jennie, daughter of the Hon. John Groce, who is mentioned elsewhere in this work, and their domestic relations are of the pleasantest. Three children have been born unto them: Nellie G., Margie C, and John.


Our subject is a stanch and influential Republican, and his counsels are often sought by his party. In 1877, he was a candidate for State Senator, showing himself a strong man in the race, but his party was too hopelessly in the minority to elect him. The following year he was honored with the nomination for Representative, and ran ahead of his ticket. His popularity is best shown by the fact that he has held the responsible ollice of Treasurer of the Township for the past six years, although the township is overwhelmingly Democratic. He is well known in social circles as a member of the  Independent Order of Odd Fellows, of the Knights of Pythias, and of other orders of like character.

 

From PORTRAIT & BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD OF FAYETTE, PICKAWAY AND MADISON COUNTIES, OHIO - Chapman Bros. [Chicago, 1892]