My Genealogy Hound

Below is a family biography included in Portrait and Biographical Album of Greene and Clark Counties, Ohio published by Chapman Bros., in 1890.  These biographies are valuable for genealogy research in discovering missing ancestors or filling in the details of a family tree. Family biographies often include far more information than can be found in a census record or obituary.  Details will vary with each biography but will often include the date and place of birth, parent names including mothers' maiden name, name of wife including maiden name, her parents' names, name of children (including spouses if married), former places of residence, occupation details, military service, church and social organization affiliations, and more.  There are often ancestry details included that cannot be found in any other type of genealogical record.

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JOSHUA T. RIDGELY. The gentleman whose name appears at the head of this sketch, and whose portrait* is presented on the opposite page, is well-known in Springfield, where he has lived for more than thirty-five years, and where he has been engaged in business for almost that length of that time. His trade is that of a house painter, and his reputation in this line of business is second to none in the city. He exhibits taste in the selection and combination of colors and tints, and the building decorated by him is a thing of beauty, and an ornament to the locality in which it stands. The personal character of Mr. Ridgely is an honorable one, and few professional men — who are generally considered more intellectual than those who follow trades — are better read than he. He is an ardent lover of good literature, and many fine volumes may be found in his cozy home. In fact, his library is both large and well selected, one of its most remarkable features being the numbers of Harper’s Weekly for thirty-five years, all well bound. From these alone a store of information could be gleaned sufficient to give a man a liberal education in the progress of humanity.

Near Traptown, Md., on the Harper’s Ferry Road, Joshua Ridgely, the father of our subject, opened his eyes to the light. He adopted the profession of school teaching, which he followed for a number of years. During the War of 1812 he served his country, for which action his widow drew a pension during the last years of her life. He died at Middletown in 1864. His wife bore the maiden name of Margaret Holter. She also was born in Maryland, and was the daughter of a Revolutionary soldrer. Her death took place March 4, 1877, at the old home where her husband breathed his last some years before.

The subject of this sketch was born January 3, 1831, near Middletown, Frederick County, Md., where his boyhood and youth were spent in the usual manner of boys in those days. At the age of nineteen years he went to live with his brother-in-law, and learned his trade, at which he served three years. In 1853 he came to Springfield, where for two years he did journey work with his brother-in-law. He then engaged in business for himself, and both as workman and contractor gained steadily in reputation.

The marriage of Mr. Ridgely and Miss Elizabeth Geisinger was celebrated at the bride’s home, January, 1854, she being a native of the same town as her husband, and their acquaintance having begun in childhood. They have four children, named respectively: Clara B., Charles T., Hiram G. and Byron. The daughter became the wife of William H. Holmes. In 1856 Mr. Ridgely joined the Springfield Light Artillery, and was appointed Sergeant of the company. He is a Democrat, strong in the faith, and ever ready to deposit his ballot on election day. He has served as a member of the Board of Education ten years, and his efficiency is recognized by all. His cozy home is under the oversight of a lady who combines skill as a housekeeper with pleasing social qualities, and the virtues which make it the dearest spot on earth for her loved ones, as well as an attractive place to many friends.

*A portrait was included in the original printed volume.

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This family biography is one of the many biographies included in Portrait and Biographical Album of Greene and Clark Counties, Ohio published by Chapman Bros., in 1890. 

View additional Greene County, Ohio family biographies here: Greene County, Ohio Biographies

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