Albert Walker, farmer and stock raiser of Brown township, is a native of Hancock county, Indiana, dating his birth from the 22nd day of July, 1853. His father, Seth Walker, was a native of New Hampshire, where his birth occurred on the 9th day of September, 1800. The first wife of Seth Walker bore him seven children and died in Brown township, this county; the following are the names of the children: Ira, of Madison county, Indianan; William H., living in Valley Falls, Kansas; Elizabeth, deceased, wife of Daniel Cook; Solon, of Madison county; Allen, deceased; Rachel, wife of John Newman, of Madison, Kansas, and John H., a carpenter working at his trade in Kansas City, Missouri.
Seth Walker was reared to manhood in New Hampshire and then went to Virginia, where he lived some years, going thence to Ohio. For several years he was engaged in rafting and freighting on the Ohio River and on quitting that business came to Indiana and located in Madison county. As early as 1830 he loaded his few household effects on a cart and with a yoke of oxen made his way through the woods to what is now Brown township, settling on eighty acres of land in sections 7 and 8, which he subsequently purchased from the government. He erected a little round-pole cabin, which served as a shelter for the family until a more comfortable home could be built, and began cutting away the timber preparatory to planting a little grain and a few vegetables, depending upon his rifle for the chief subsistence of the family until his crop matured. He was one of the first permanent settlers within the present limits of Brown township, and for two or three years following his arrival he lived remote from neighbors and experienced many hardships and privations in procuring a livelihood. He was poor in this worlds goods, but rich in the essential elements of success. With strong arm and tireless energy he prosecuted his labors and in the course of a few years had a comfortable home, besides owning several other tracts of land which he entered and bought. The meantime he cleared and improved several farms and became one of the largest real estate holders in the county, owning at one time over seven hundred acres, which increased greatly in value with the influx of population. Of this estate he divided among his sons and daughters forty acres each and also assisted each of his daughters in a substantial way when the married and left the parental roof. He took an active part in county affairs in an early day, being a member of one of the first boards of commissioners, also serving ten years as justice of the peace and for a considerable length of time was the leading Democratic politician of the township in which he lived.
Mr. Walker was a man of fine business abilities and was frequently retained to settle estates and do legal and other writings for his neighbors. He stood for public improvements, inaugurated a number of enterprises for the advancement of his township along material lines, and was equally aggressive in behalf of churches and all kinds of moral reforms. A Methodist in belief, he gave liberally of his means to plant congregations among the sparse settlements, confining his benefactions to no particular denomination, but assisting to the extent of his ability all religious movements. Some time after the death of his first wife he married Elizabeth Rogers, of North Carolina, who became the mother of five children, viz: Hannah E., widow of William Davis, living in Topeka, Kansas; Jesse, a farmer of that state, with home at Valley Falls; Seth an agriculturalist of Van Buren, Grant county; Joseph, a resident of Madison county, and Albert, subject of this biography. The mother of this family died March 25, 1871, and later Mr. Walker married her sister, Nancy Rogers, a union without issue. He departed this life July 19, 1874, and his wife followed him to the grave on the 2nd day of December, 1884.
Albert Walker first saw the light of day on the family homestead in Brown township and spent the years of his childhood and youth pretty much the same as the majority of boys born and reared amid the peaceful pursuits of rural life. He attended the home school for a limited period, but was not permitted to prosecute his studies as much as he desired on account of his services being required on the farm. While a youth he worked hard and seldom took a holiday or enjoyed the recreations which are needful for the proper development of ones physical and mental faculties. As long as his parents lived he remained with them, looking after their interests, ministering to their comforts and managing the farm, which, under his directions, was made to yield a liberal income.
On the 5th day of February, 1874, Mr. Walker and Miss Almira Morris, of Madison county, this state, were united in the bonds of wedlock. Mrs. Walker is the daughter of Samuel and Eliza J. (Warder) Morris, both natives of Ohio, the father a carpenter and later a farmer. They settled in the county of Madison a number of years ago and spent the remainder of their lives there, both dying on the farm. Which Mr. Morris originally purchased. They were the parents of seven children, two sons and five daughters, of whom there are four living, as follows: Alonzo, an agriculturist is a resident of Delaware county, Indiana and wedded Lovina Roth, by whom he has three children: Arminda is the wife of Jefferson Jackson, of Delaware county, and they have four children: Mrs. Walker is next in order of birth; Jennie is the wife of Rev. John Bray, a minister of the United Brethren church at Wabash, this state. Mrs. Walker was born January 8, 1852, in Madison county, Indiana, and was there reared. After his marriage Mr. Walker engaged in the pursuit of agriculture, which he has since carried on in connection with stock raising, meeting with a large measure of success in his chosen calling. His farm in Brown township is admirably situated and with the series of substantial improvements made thereon is now one of the most beautiful and attractive as well as one of the most valuable, in that part of the county. Mr. Walker erected the present handsome dwelling in 1900; it is one of the finest country residences in Brown township and, with the comforts and conveniences with which furnished, represents a value of several thousand dollars.
As a farmer and stock raiser, Mr. Walker enjoys distinctive prestige and as one of the enterprising and progressive men of affairs his standing is second to that of no other individual in his community. His farm, consisting of one hundred and seventy acres of fertile land, is in a high state of cultivation and he seldom fails to reap bountiful harvests, as well as to realize large returns from the sale of fine hogs, shorthorn cattle and other domestic animals which he raises.
Fraternally, he holds membership with Lodge No. 411, I. O. O. F. at Warrington, and religiously he and wife belong to the United Brethren church. As a citizen he discharges his duties with commendable fidelity and few men enjoy a larger measure of public confidence. In matters of business he is careful and methodical, possessing discriminating judgment, and all of his dealings are characterized by a high sense of justice.
Mr. and Mrs. Walker have five children: Fannie married Frank Tiney of Grant county, and is the mother of two daughters, Leona and Cecil May; Edward Benton, the second in order of birth, lives in Madison county, married Mrs. Ida Kemper and has two sons, Horace E. and Russell T.; Oren E., Estella and Luella M. are unmarried and still live with their parents.
Transcribed from Biographical Memoirs of Hancock County B. F. Bowen, Publisher, Logansport, Indiana, 1902 Pages 415-417.
Submitted by Sylvia (Rose) Duda, Laingsburg, MI Sept. 22, 2003.
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