My Genealogy Hound

Below is a family biography included in The History of Miami County, Ohio published by W. H. Beers & Co. in 1880.  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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OSCAR M. THOMAS, landscape, portrait and carriage painter, West Milton; was born in Concord Township, near Troy, in 1847; his grandfather was one of the early pioneers, having emigrated from Kentucky to Miami Co. about 1803, locating on land in Concord Township when the primeval forest of Ohio was unawakened from the repose of nature’s solitude; on this land he reared his family, and there he was gathered to his fathers, at the advanced age of 89 years. Our subject’s father, John Thomas, was born on the old home place in 1827, but has resided in various places, having dealt quite extensively in lumber, though by trade he was a plasterer; his mother, Elizabeth (Wingett) Thomas, was born near Greenville, Ohio, about 1835; they are the parents of seven children, of whom five are living, viz., Oscar M., Charley F., Maple O., Beecher M. and Addie; the deceased are Belle and Caroline; his parents are living, and reside in Union City, Ind. Our subject was raised on the farm, where he assisted in agricultural pursuits till his 18th year, and during the time had the advantage of the common schools; he then entered S. G. Grier’s Commercial School, in Dayton, where he took the full commercial course; he then began his trade, and worked under instructions in Cozats Bros.’ shops in Dayton, for four years; in 1872, he removed to Greenville, Ohio, and for one year faithfully labored at his trade; thence to Troy, where for four years he was actively engaged in his business; thence to West Milton, where he is now located; he is a gentleman who is thoroughly educated in his business, fully understanding every branch of his work, and, from actual observance, we know he is master of his vocations; he also possesses good musical ability, and is a member of the home band; as a portrait and landscape painter, he possesses rare natural talent, and The Four Scenes of Life, which adorn the walls of his parlors, show good artistic skill and originality in characters; the first vividly portrays free, joyous and happy childhood, just entering the river of life in a bark canoe, with not a ripple of water to mar life’s early dream; the second is neatly and artistically drawn, representing the second scene in life, with the voyagers a little farther down the stream of life, still joyous and happy, gliding peacefully along, and unconsciously nearing the breakers where so many lives have been lost; in the third scene, the voyager is strongly depicted in the midst of the storms of life, his broken canoe is struggling violently with the surging breakers, and the occupant is endeavoring to withstand the fury of the storm; the weird grandeur of this scene is striking in contrast with the elements all have to contend with; the fourth is the closing scene of life; the voyager has drifted into more quiet waters; the angel of mercy is hovering near; the hand is palsied, and no longer controls the craft, which is entirely at the mercy of the waters, and on which angels keep a faithful vigil. His marriage with Miss Minnie Dibra was celebrated Nov. 17, 1868; her father, Henry Dibra, was born in New Jersey in 1803; her mother, Charity Dibra, was born in Miami Co. in 1813; they are the parents of seven children, six daughters and one son, viz., Lizzie, Alma, Elijah, Minnie and Nannie; the deceased are Mary and Susan. To the union of Mr. and Mrs. Thomas two children have been given, viz., Claudie, born Sept. 11, 1869, and May, born Aug. 16, 1864. Mrs. Thomas is a member of the Christian Church of Troy, and is an exemplary Christian woman.

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This family biography is one of 964 biographies included in The History of Miami County, Ohio published in 1880 by W. H. Beers & Co.  For the complete description, click here: Miami County, Ohio History and Genealogy

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

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