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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ELI McKINDEY ARBOGAST can number among his ancestors two of the early settlers of this part of Ohio, and he himself was born in this county, and has ever since made his home here, with the exception of a year elsewhere. In his business as a contractor and builder he has done a great deal to promote the growth of Springfield, his place of residence, and the surrounding country. When he came here in early manhood the city was but a village of three or four thousand people, and he has seen it grow from a mere commercial town, the metropolis of an agricultural community, to be one of the most flourishing manufacturing cities in the State, with a population of nearly forty thousand inhabitants.

Mr. Arbogast was born in Moorefield Township, March 4, 1830, a son of George Arbogast, who was born in Pendleton County, Va., August 10, 1793, a son of Michael Arbogast, a native of the same State. His father, great-grandfather of our subject, was born in Germany, and coming to America in Colonial times, he settled in Virginia, and eventually died there. The grandfather of our subject was reared to agricultural pursuits on his father’s plantation, in the Old Dominion, and made his home in that commonwealth until 1816, when he emigrated to Ohio, accompanied by his wife and their five sons and two daughters — George, Silas, Eli, Enoch, Solomon, Elizabeth and Abbie. He settled in that part of Champaign County now included in Clark County, buying a tract of land in Moorefield Township, of which he thus became one the earliest settlers, and where he resided until his mortal career was closed by death. The maiden name of his wife was Buzzard.

The father of our subject was the eldest son of the family, and at the time of their location in Clark County it was a wilderness, with deer, wolves and other wild animals haunting it, and he being an expert marksman, won a reputation as a skilled deer hunter. He bought a tract of land in Moorefield Township, and engaged in farming there for a long time with good profit, accumulating considerable property, but he lost it all by going security for some friends. He subsequently removed to Springfield Township, and there his life was rounded out by death in the month of April, 1868. He had lived to see the county quite well developed, with fine farms, busy towns, and flourishing cities, where he once saw but primeval forests, wild prairies and uncultivated meadows, with settlements few and scattering. The maiden name of his wife was Elizabeth Hullinger, who was a native of Pennsylvania. Her father was Daniel Hullinger, an early pioneer of Ohio, coming to this State in 1816, and settling in Champaign County, near Fremont, where he improved a good farm, upon which he spent his last days. The maiden name of his wife was Shackey. The mother of our subject died in Springfield Township, in July, 1867. She and her husband were the parents of sixteen children, of whom the following thirteen were reared to maturity: Eliza, Melinda, Catherine, Nancy, Enoch G., Matilda, Eli M„ Charles, Harvey, Seth, William H., John and Isaac.

Eli McKindey Arbogast was reared and educated in this county, and at the age of eighteen commenced to learn the carpenter’s trade, serving an apprenticeship of three years, and becoming a master of his chosen calling in all its details. He then did “jour” work until 1857, when he established himself as a contractor and builder, and has ever since carried it on with excellent pecuniary results in this county, with the exception of a year’s residence in Dayton. He has always conducted a thriving business, erecting many residence buildings, etc., in this city, and even carrying on his building operations in other parts of the county, and has gathered together a comfortable amount of property, and by wise investments of his money has increased his bank account. During the long years of his residence in this city his fellow-citizens have always found him prompt, truthful and even dealing in all his business transactions, in which, moreover, he has displayed excellent discernment and sound sense. He and his estimable wife are members in high standing of the St. Paul Methodist Episcopal Church, of which he is a Trustee, and they are earnest in their endeavors to further the cause of religion. Mr. Arbogast first joined the church on Columbia Street, and later connected himself with the Center Street Church, and which he has since been identified. He belongs to the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, as a member of Springfield Lodge, No. 33.

Mr. Arbogast has been blest in his domestic relations. He has been twice married. November 6, 1851, he was married to Catherine Coffield, a native of Butler County, Ohio, and a daughter of John Coffield. After a happy wedded life of twenty-seven years that woman of sainted memory passed to her reward, and her household knew the comfort of her presence no more, her death occurring November 11, 1878, five days after the anniversary of her wedding. Of that union our subject has three children — John, George and William.

The marriage of our subject to his present amiable and true wife, who devotes herself to making his home pleasant, took place December 27, 1880. She has also been twice married. Her maiden name was Annie Gano, and she was born in Asbury, Hunterdon County, N. J., May 6, 1811. She was first married June 15, 1857, to Johnson Elliott. He was an attorney and practiced his profession first in Bucyrus, this State, and later in Wapakoneta, the county seat of Auglaize County, and there he died while yet not far past the prime of life.

Mrs. Arbogast’s father, William Gano, was born in Asbury, N. J., while his father, Asher Gano, is thought to have been born in either Germany or Pennsylvania of German parentage. He was a well-to-do farmer, owning a large farm near Asbury, and died there. Mrs. Arbogast’s father followed the trade of a carpenter in Asbury until 1842, and then left New Jersey to make a new home in Ohio, and located near West Liberty, in Logan County, and died in 1844, in the home that he purchased there. The maiden name of his wife was Jemima Smitt. She was born in Asbury, and was a daughter of Joseph Smitt, who was a farmer and spent his last years in New Jersey. The maiden name of his wife was Wykoff. She was a native of New Jersey, and a life-long resident of the State. Mrs. Arbogast’s mother spent her last years with her children, and died at the advanced age of eighty-four years.

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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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