Ohio Biographies

Samuel Ward

No man with any pretensions to wisdom fails to insure his property against loss by fire. A name which renders the business of insuring one of the most popular in Circleville is that of Samuel Ward, who has been associated with the business for some time. He is noted for his straightforward methods of conducting his affairs and is doing a heavy business in the city and surrounding country. The number of fire insurance companies doing business in Ohio is a large one, but the solidity of an insurance company and its promptness in paying claims are most important points. In this respect, the companies represented by Mr. Ward are entitled to due prominence and recognition, from the high character and reputation they enjoy. He represents twelve companies, viz: Phoenix, of Brooklyn; Eire Association, of Philadelphia; Milwaukee Mechanics', Ohio Farmers', and many others.

Our subject was born in Dudley, Worcestershire, England, on the 4th of November, 1837, and his father, Richard Ward, was also born there, as was also the grandfather, William Ward. The latter was a tradesman and died in his native country. Richard Ward was a hoop-iron roller in the early part of his life and later was Superintendent of coal mines. He first came to this country in 1822, and afterward he returned, but came again in 1847 with his wife and children, settling in Connecticut, near New Britain, Hartford County, and was engaged in farming until his death, four years later. In politics, he was a Free-soil Whig, and in religion was a Regular Baptist. His wife, whose maiden name was Sarah Elwell, was a native of England. She was first married to a Mr. Brooks, by whom she had one child, who is still living. Her subsequent marriage to Mr. Ward resulted in the birth of six children, only four now living, two in England and two in this country. After the death of Mr. Ward, his widow continued to reside in Connecticut for some time and then returned to her native country, where she passed her last days.

Samuel Ward, the original of this notice, was the youngest of the above-mentioned children, and he remained in his native country until ten years of age. In December, 1847, he left Liverpool, England, on the sailing-vessel "Andrew Foster," and after a nine-weeks' voyage landed with his parents in New York. From there, he subsequently moved with them to Connecticut and worked on a farm until sixteen years of age, in the meantime acquiring a very limited education in the common schools, for he was obliged to spend most of his time in youth in labor on the farm. In 1853 or 1854, he went to Harrisburgh, Pa., and clerked for some time for the State Mutual Insurance Company, in which his brother was Secretary. In 1855, he came to Ohio, staying in Pickaway and Fairfield Counties about one year. He then went to Champaign County, Ill., where, with his brother John, he bought three hundred and twenty acres of land, and on this raw land they commenced making improvements. There our subject remained until the breaking out of hostilities between the North and South. For the first few years on the farm, crops were very poor and they were obliged to pay eighty cents per bushel for corn to feed their stock In 1881, they raised the first good crop, but the freight in shipping it was so great that they realized but little from it. During that winter, Mr. Ward burned corn for fuel as he had to haul wood fourteen miles.

In December, 1861, our subject enlisted in the Tenth Illinois Volunteers, and was mustered in at Camp Butler. He was appointed Commissary Sergeant of the Second Battalion and was sent to Quincy, Ill. He remained there one month and then went to Benton Barracks and then to renew the forces of Curtis at Pea Ridge. From there, he went to Missouri, but was injured in the left leg by a kick from a horse and went home on a furlough. He later took part in the battle of Pine Bluff and afterward was at Fayetteville until the spring of 1863. General Order No. 126 from the War Department changed the organization from Battalion to Regimental and mustered out the supernumerary offlccrs, botli commissioned and non-commissioned. Our subject was mustered out in April, 1863, and returned to Champaign County, Ill., staying but a short time. The same year, he went to Chillicothe, Ohio, and was foreman for Emmett Bros, until the summer of 1864, when he came to Circleville and clerked for Emmett Bros, in the grain house for five months. While in Chillicothe, he learned telegraphy on the private line owned by Emmett Bros, and in the fall of 1864 he was employed by the Western Union Telegraph Company at Washington C. H. office. In the spring of 1865, he was appointed to the Lancaster city office, but, being offered better pay in Circleville, Ohio, he went there in the fall of that year, and was manager of the same for nineteen years. In 1884, he quit this business and opened an insurance office in the Independent Order of Odd Fellows' building.

Mr. Ward organized the Edison Electric Light Company and was its Secretary for three years. He was married in Champaign County, Ill., on the3d of Januaiy, 1860, to Miss Ellen Post, a native of Dane County, Wis., and they are the parents of six children, four living: Abbie, Mrs. F. A. Barr;Nellie, Mrs. T. A. Boyle; Lillie, Mrs. H. M. Rife. Samuel died at the age of three years; Charles died at the age of twenty-two months, and Ruby is athome. Mr. Ward is a member of the Masonic fraternity, the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, and Groce Post No. 156, G. A. R. He is a member of the Baptist Church, and is Trustee in the same. He has been Superintendent of the Sunday school until recently. In politics, he is a true-blue Republican.