Josiah Kiger, deceased, was for several years a well-known and prominent agriculturalist of Perry township. He was a native of Ohio, born in Fairfield county, February 9, 1823, and was a son of William Kiger, who lived and died in that county. In the family of twelve children Josiah was the fifth in order of birth, and was reared to agricultural pursuits. When a young man, he came to Perry township, Wood county, purchasing eighty acres of partially improved land, in Section 7, and immediately began its further development, making his home, in the meantime, with his sister, Mrs. John Bucher.

While attending a spelling school in Perry township, Mr. Kiger first met Eleanor W. Kelley, and the acquaintance thus formed ripened into love, and they were married on June 7, 1848, in Montgomery township, Wood county. She is a daughter of John A. and Rachel (Shawan) Kelly, and was born November 24, 1828. Three children blessed this union, all daughters: Nancy E., born June 2, 1854, became the wife of Daniel M. Yates, and died on October 17, 1888. Annie C., born September 27, 1857, received a common-school education, and for a time attended the normal school at Lebanon, Ohio, where she better prepared herself for teaching, which she began at the age of sixteen, and followed the profession for ten terms, with excellent success. Subsequently she completed a two-years' course of music at the Fostoria Academy, and later taught music. In Toledo, Ohio, on the 9th of December, 1886, she wedded J. J. Harley, and to them have been born three children--Harrison C., born August 19, 1888; Ella B., born January 30, 1890; and John Arthur, born March 25, 1892. The youngest child of our subject was May E., who was born May 3, 1864, and died in infancy.

In a log house, built near the creek which flowed through his land, Mr. Kiger and his bride began their domestic life. Although it was an arduous task to develop the new land, he was young and full of hope, and soon converted the place into a valuable farm. In 1868, however, he removed to West Millgrove, where, for about three years, he engaged in merchandising, but at the end of that time returned to his farm, and continued his agricultural pursuits until his death, which occurred August 7, 1872, from the accidental discharge of a gun. His remains were interred in West Millgrove cemetery. He was an earnest defender of Republican principles, and a man whose opinions were invariably held in respect. He cared nothing for political office, though he served for a time as trustee of Perry township. In early life he had served as deacon in the Congregational Church to which he belonged, but later became a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church, with which Mrs. Kiger is also connected. He left to his widow 160 acres of good land, which she leases, and since December, 1872, has made her home in West Millgrove, surrounded by her many friends.

 

 

Commemorative Historical and Biographical Record of Wood County, Ohio; J. H. Beers & Co., Chicago, 1897