Greenfield is fortunate in having among her enterprising citizens a number of men engaged in important industrial, commercial and other enterprises one of whom is the well-known gentleman above named, who, as proprietor of a large and finely equipped livery barn, has added very materially to the prosperity of the city. To run successfully a business of this kind requires not only energy and good management but a liberal endowment of intelligence and brain power, which the subject of this review possess in a marked degree.
John B. Huston is proud to call Indiana his native state and from early manhood he has manifested a pardonable pride in the wonderful advancement along industrial and other lines for which the commonwealth has been noted. He was born March 14, 1846, in Madison county and three years later was brought to the county of Hancock by his parents, Thomas W. and Lucinda (Woodard) Huston, who settled in Vernon township. Thomas W. Huston purchased one hundred and twenty acres of wild land, from which he developed a good farm and in addition to agricultural pursuits carried on blacksmithing, which he had formerly learned in the county of Madison. Later he disposed of his place in Vernon township and, purchasing a farm of the same number of acres in Jackson township, continued agriculture and blacksmithing for a number of years, operating a shop at Willow Branch. He was a successful man and accumulated sufficient means to place himself in independent circumstances. Personally he was held in high repute by his neighbors and friends and, as an active worker in the Methodist church, took a leading part in disseminating religious truth throughout the community in which he resided. He died on the 7th day of February, 1889, at the age of sixty-three. His widow died in Anderson January 13, 1902, aged seventy-six years. Thomas W. and Lucinda Huston reared a family of five children, the oldest of whom is the subject of this review; Mary A. married J. B. Wiseman and lives in Madison county; Sarah Jane, deceased, was the wife of A. J. Whetzel, a merchant of Fortville; Jeanette Ann died in girlhood; William is a mechanic and married Belle Collins; Margaret, the youngest, who died some years ago, was the wife of William Thomas, of Willow Branch.
John B. Huston was educated in the district school and grew to young manhood amid the stirring scenes of the farm, with the rugged duties of which he early became practically acquainted. He remained with his parents until the age of sixteen, when he responded to the countrys call for volunteers by enlisting in Company K, Eighth Indiana Infantry. His command was first sent to Helena, Arkansas, thence to Vicksburg, where it formed a part of the army under General Grant which invested and laid siege to that important Confederate stronghold. Mr. Huston served with distinction until his discharge, in June, 1865, taking part in many important campaigns and participating in more than thirty battles and skirmishes, in all of which his record was that of a brave and daring soldier who never flinched from duty and who freely became a target for the enemys bullets in his desire to crush the hosts of treason and keep intact the government which the fathers of the republic left as a priceless heritage to their descendants. He passed through all of his trying experiences uninjured, but was taken prisoner at the battle of Cedar Creek; he did not long remain in the hands of the enemy, escaping in company with a companion.
Mr. Huston was married December 28, 1865, to Miss Sarah Jane Roberts, a native of Pennsylvania, and two children resulted from this union, Luella Maud, wife of William Wilson, of Jackson township, and Charles, who entered into the marriage relation with Mary Mulvihill and is the father of two offspring, May and Pearl Huston.
Following his marriage, Mr. Huston engaged in agricultural pursuits and continued the same for some years with financial profit, accumulating a handsome property. Owning at the present time the old homestead in Jackson township and a smaller farm in the same part of the county. For a period of nine years he conducted a successful blacksmith business in the town of Fortville and in 1881 moved to Greenfield, where he now owns and operates one of the largest and most successful livery barns in the county.
Mr. Hustons place of business on South Pennsylvania street is well known to the public and since coming to the city his patronage has steadily increased in magnitude until he is now practically the most successful liveryman in the place. He keeps nothing but the best roadsters, while his buggies, hacks and other vehicles are all first class and he spares neither pains nor expense in supplying the public demand with every favor in his line. In addition to the livery business, he also deals quite extensively in horses and other live stock, buying and shipping, and to him is much credit due for bringing to Greenfield many fine animals and improving the breeds of horses now used in the city.
In public affairs Mr. Huston has been no mere spectator. For twelve years he has been a member of the city council and as such has used his influence to promote the prosperity of the municipality, standing for progress and improvement and voting for all measures having for their object the material prosperity of the town. Politically he is one of the stanch Republicans of Hancock county and, though never an aspirant for official position himself, he makes any sacrifice within his power to advance the interests of friends and deems it his duty to subordinate his own claims to the general welfare of the party. He is an enthusiastic member of Dunbar Post, Grand Army of the Republic, at Greenfield, and also belongs to Lodge No. 178, I.O.O.F., at Fortville.
Mr. Huston is a man of strong convictions and pronounced views, fearless in the expression of his opinions on all subjects and steadfast in upholding his principles, regardless of opposition. He is a friend to the poor and those who call upon him for encouragement or advice are never turned empty-handed away. As a public-spirited citizen and useful member of society he ranks with the substantial and enterprising men of his city and county and the high esteem in which he is held bears testimony to his sterling qualities of head and heart. In business he manages his affairs in a systematic and methodical manner, is straightforward in all of his dealings and by living up to his ideals of right and duty has won the confidence of those with whom he has been brought in contact. Numbered among the prominent men and valued citizens of the county and devoted to its best interests, he well deserves representation in this volume.
Transcribed from Biographical Memoirs of Hancock County B. F. Bowen, Publisher, Logansport, Indiana, 1902 Pages 291-293.
Submitted by Sylvia (Rose) Duda, Laingsburg, MI July 19, 2002.
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