An American Family History



  Excerpts from Biographical and Genealogical History of Cass, Miami, Howard and Tipton Counties, Indiana  

In the War of 1812 (1812-1815) the United States declared war on England because of trade restrictions, impressment, and British support for Indian attacks. They signed the Treaty of Ghent on December 24, 1814 after reaching a stalemate.

Indiana became a state in 1819. The north was settled by people from New England and New York, the center by people from the Mid-Atlantic states and Ohio, and the south by people from Southern states, particularly Kentucky and Tennessee.

Matthias Friermood, having been born in Hamburg [Germany]. Matthias Friermood, when a boy of fourteen years, ran away from home and came to America, working his passage on a ship, and upon landing in this country made his way to Ohio, which was then a territory. There he lived and labored the rest of his life.

His son was in the War of 1812 and experienced many of the hardships incident to life in the Western Reserve at that early day. He died at a fort on lake Erie. In Clark county he accumulated a large tract of land, to the amount of eleven hundred acres, and when he died, at a venerable age, he left to his children a valuable estate. His wife, whose maiden name was Nancy, or Patsy, Hill, survived him a number of years, her age at death being about ninety.

Reuben Friermood . . .was born in Clark county, Ohio, and was there married to Miss Sarah Kizer, a descendant of German ancestry and a representative of one of the well-to-do families of that county. Her brothers, John and George Kizer, were two of Clark county's wealthiest men. One of them built the first brick house in the county, which is still standing.

Reuben Friermood and wife were the parents of the following named children: Jacob, John, Reuben, George, William, Elizabeth [married Silas Baker], Jane, Mary, Catherine and Martha. Three sons, Jacob, Reuben and George, were Union soldiers in the Civil war, and George waskilled while in the service. The father of this family died of typhoid fever at the age of fifty years. He was a substantial and much esteemed farmer of Clark county; religiously, a Lutheran, politically, an old-line Whig.

Jacob Friermood, son of Reuben and father of the subject of this sketch, was born in Clark county, Ohio, on the old homestead, May 12, 1820. There he grew up and married, the lady of his choice being Elizabeth Baker, who was born in Clark county, in April, 1822, daughter of John and Susan (Norman) Baker, both the Normans and Bakers being of German descent and having come to Ohio from Virginia.

Jacob Friermood settled on the home farm after his marriage and resided there until 1851, when he moved to Grant county, Indiana, and located in Sims township, buying eighty acres of land and subsequently adding another eighty thereto. His first work here was to build a log cabin. Other improvements followed, and in the course of time his farm was one of the best in the vicinity. He continued his residence upon it until 1891, when he returned to the scenes of his childhood in Clark county, Ohio, and there lived retired until his death, at about seventyeight years of age. He was a member of the German Reformed church. His children are Samuel, Dr. Ezra K., Sarah, deceased, Zachariah T., Susannah, William E., deceased, John T., Letitia and Jacob L.

Jacob Friermood and two of his brothers were in the army. He enlisted August 15, 1862, for three years or during the war, as a private in Company I, Ninety-ninth Indiana Volunteer Infantry, under Captain M. V. Powell, and served until he was honorably discharged at the close of the war. He was mustered out at Washington, D. C., June 5, 1865, and honorably discharged at Indianapolis on the 1 5th of the same month. In the early part of his service he was crippled from marching and was detailed for hospital and commissary service, in which capacity he was active until he was honorably discharged.

Clark County, Ohio was formed March 1, 1817, from Champaign, Madison and Greene Counties. The first settlement was in 1796. The inhabitants of German Township were German Lutherans who came from Virginia.

A Whig was originally a supporter of the American Revolution and from about 1834 to 1855 was a member of the political party that opposed the Democrats. The party supported the supremacy of Congress over the Presidency and favored modernization and economic protectionism.

Settlers often built log cabins as their first homes.

Presbyterians are Protestant Christians. The denomination originated in Scotland and congregations are ruled by elected elders. Presbyterian theology follows the Calvanist tradition and emphasizes the sovereignty of God, the authority of the Scriptures, and grace through faith in Christ.
Rockingham County, Virginia was established in 1778 from Augusta County. European settlement began in the 1740s.

Early American Colonists and pioneers had to make everything necessary for daily life and skilled craftsmen were essential.

Typhoid fever is transmitted by the eating or drinking feces contaminated food or drink. Symptons include fever, profuse sweating, gastroenteritis and diarrhea.
Typhomalarial fever has symptoms of malaria and typhoid fever.
Typhus is a completely different disease and is spread by lice or fleas. The patient has fever, joint pain, cough and headache.

from Biographical and Genealogical History of Cass, Miami, Howard and Tipton Counties, Indiana

William Friermood, of Converse, Indiana, dates his identity with this state from 1851, Grant county being the place where he first established his home. From there he subsequently came to Jackson township, Miami county, where he resides at the present time.

Reuben Friermood, [Sr.], the father of William, was a son of Matthias and Martha (Hill) Friermood, and Matthias was a son of Matthias. The younger Matthias Friermood was a Virginian by birth and by occupation was a blacksmith and farmer. He married in his native state Miss Martha Hill, and he and his wife became pioneers of Clark county, Ohio, their settlement in German township of that county being as early as 1805 or 1806, while the Indians were still there. The red men were friendly to the Friermoods and would frequently go to Grandmother Friermood and say, "Good woman, give me milk;" and she would give them mush and milk, of which they were very fond.

These worthy pioneers of Clark county acquired and improved a fine farm of six hundred acres. Their children were George [Friermood], Eva, Barbara [Friermood Baker], Martha, Catherine, Christiana, Reuben and John. John [Friermood] died in a block house during the War of 1812, and Martha died when young. The father died at the age of seventy years and his wife was seventy-two when she passed away. They were members of the Lutheran church.

Their son, Reuben Friermood [Jr.], our subject's father, was born in Virginia, September 13, 1779, and, like his father, he was both a blacksmith and farmer. As a blacksmith, however, he did only his own work. At the time his parents moved to Ohio, as above recorded, he was a boy of eight years, and on his father's frontier farm in Clark county he was reared, his educational advantages being limited to a short training in the "three R's."

He married, in that county, Miss Sarah Kizer, who was born in Virginia, June 20, 1795, a daughter of Philip and Elizabeth (Kite) Kizer. Philip Kizer was one of the frontier settlers of Clark county. He built the first corn mill, or "corn-cracker," as it was called, in his part of the country, on Mad river, and subsequently he erected a flouring mill at the same location. He was regarded as one of the wealthiest men of his locality, and left to each of his children a tract of land on which they settled. His children were William, Michael, John, George, Sarah, Betsy, Katie, Annie, Mary and Peggie. He was a middle-aged man when he died, and his wife lived to a ripe old age.

Reuben Friermood after marriage settled at the old Friermood homestead, a farm of two hundred and ninety-three acres, and there took care of his aged mother during the latter part of her life. To him and his wife were given the following named children: Jacob, John, Reuben, George, William, Elizabeth [Friermood Baker, married Silas Baker], Mary, Jane. Catherine and Martha.

Reuben Friermood, the father, died of typhoid fever, at the age of fifty-one years. He was a member of the Lutheran church and a liberal supporter of the same, and politically he was first a Democrat and later an old-line Whig.

William Friermood, whose name initiates this review, dates his birth on [the] Mad river, in German township, Clark county, Ohio, February 3, 1826, and his youthful days were passed not unlike those of other frontier farmer boys. Industry was among the first lessons he learned and the farm work he had to do left him with little time to attend school. Farming has been his life occupation. After his marriage, which event occurred early in the year 1850, he settled on the home farm in Clark county, Ohio, but the following year he came over into Indiana and located in Grant county, entering eighty acres of land. His only start in life was one hundred dollars, given him by his father, and with this for a foundation, and with the assistance of his faithful wife, he accumulated a competency and made an comfortable and attractive home, at one time owning five hundred acres of land. He is a typical pioneer and substantial farmer, who gave each of his four children eighty acres of land, retaining one hundred and eighty for his own use, all of which is valuable farming land; and besides, he owns choice property in the town of Converse.

February 14, 1850, in his native county, he was married to Miss Catherine Baker, who was born September 10. 1824, a daughter of Martin and Elizabeth (King) Baker. Her father, a weaver by trade, was born in Rockingham county [now Page], Virginia, June 16, 1770, of sturdy German stock, his father having come to this country from Germany.

His wife was born September 22, 1788. He was married in his native county to Mrs. Elizabeth Sailor, nee King, and their children were:
Mary, born August 13. 1813;
Elizabeth, November 27, 1814;
Anna, August 25, 1816;
Margaret, February 19, 1818;
William, August 13, 1819;
Sallie, July 2, 1823;
Catherine, September 10, 1824;
Maria and Lucy, twins, November 11, 1826;
Alexander, September 18, 1828, and
Samuel M., December 10, 1830.

All lived to good old ages, and five of them are still living, namely: Sallie, Catherine, Alexander, Samuel and Lucy. By her former husband, Mr. Sailor, Mrs. Baker had two children—Susan and Peter. Mr. Baker was a soldier in the War of 1812, moved to Ohio and settled in Clark county in 1823, cleared land and made a farm; and there passed the remainder of his days, being in his eighty-fourth year at the time of his death in 1855. He was a Presbyterian.

The children of William Friermood are:
Reuben, born December 30, 1850, and died when about ten years of age;
Martin B., born February 26, 1853;
Mary C., September 12, 1856;
Charlie O., January 28, 1860;
Squire S., August 23, 1862, and
William A., January 13, 1866.

A blacksmith forges and shapes iron with a hammer and anvil.

A freemason (mason) is a member of an international fraternal and charitable organization pledged to mutual assistance and brotherly love.

The first Europeans settled in the Northwest Territory in 1788. The Miami Company managed settlement in the southwest and the Connecticut Land Company managed settlement in the northeast. Migrants came from New York and New England. Ohio was admitted to the Union as the 17th state on March 1, 1803.

Coverlets (Coverlid) are woven bedcovers, used as the topmost covering on a bed.
American pioneers migrated west to settle areas not previously inhabited by European Americans.




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©Roberta Tuller 2017