Allen F. Cooper, county treasurer of Hancock county, who is now serving his second term in that important and responsible office, is a native son of Hancock county, having been born on a farm in Center township, November 19, 1862, son of Harrison L. and Mary A. (Johnson) Cooper, the former of whom also was a native of this county and the latter a native of the state of Kentucky.
Harrison L. Cooper was born in Green township, in this county, February 27, 1839, son of Elijah Cooper and wife, pioneers of that township, who had come to this part of Indiana from Boone county, Kentucky, the Coopers having entered Kentucky by way of Virginia in the preceding generation. Elijah Cooper, who was born in 1799, was a man of large influence in an earlier day in this county and both he and his wife did much in the way of bringing about proper conditions of social and economic life in the neighborhood in which they settled. Elijah Cooper was a farmer and became a large landowner. He possessed much political influence and for some time served as treasurer of the county, the position which his grandson now holds. His death occurred in 1865, he then being sixty-six years of age. Harrison L. Cooper was reared on the pioneer farm and was a farmer all his life, becoming the owner of a good piece of property in Center township. He was a Democrat and took an active part in political affairs. He was a member of the Odd Fellows lodge and in the affairs of that organization took a warm interest. About the year 1860 he married Mary A. Johnson, of Boone county, Kentucky, and to this union four children were born, namely: Listina, who died at the age of sixteen years; Allen F., the subject of this biographical sketch; Charles E., who is manager of the telephone company at Norfolk, Nebraska, and Berilla, who died in 1899. Harrison L. Cooper died in 1881, he then being forty-two years of age.
Allen F. Cooper was reared on the paternal farm in this county and was educated in the schools at Greenfield. He then went to Boone county, Kentucky, where he worked on a farm for five years, at the end of which time he returned to Greenfield and learned the blacksmith trade under Lumbach & Barr. In 1890 he and Wallace Everson formed a partnership and were engaged together in the blacksmith business until 1896, in which year the partnership was dissolved and in Janaury, 1897, Mr. Cooper entered into a partnership with Taylor Morford, under the firm name of Morford & Cooper, which continued quite successfully until Mr. Cooper retired from business at the close of the year 1912 in order to take up his duties of the office of county treasurer, to which responsible and important office he had been elected in the preceding election. Mr. Cooper is an ardent Democrat and for years has taken an active part in the political affairs of his home county. In 1902-03 he served as a member of the Greenfield city council and in the election of 1912 was elected county treasurer by a big majority. So satisfactory was his service in behalf of the public in this connection that he was re-elected in 1914 and is now serving his second term in the county treasurer's office. Mr. Cooper is president of the local club of the "Dixie Highway" association, organized for the purpose of promoting a great trunk highway from Chicago to Cincinnati, and for seven years he was one of the most active members of the Greenfield volunteer fire department. In other ways Mr. Cooper has displayed his interest in general affairs hereabout and long has been looked upon as one of the most progressive and public-spirited citizens of Greenfield.
On June 27, 1893, Allen F. Cooper was united in marriage at Columbus, Indiana, to Elizabeth A. Coon, who was born in Ripley county, this state, August 6, 1897, daughter of Joshua and Jane (Johnson) Conn, natives of Indiana and both of whom are still living. Joshua Conn was a farmer and building contractor until the time of his retirement from active labor. He is a veteran of the Civil War, having served for four years in an Indiana regiment during the struggle between the states in the sixties. His daughter, Elizabeth, was educated in the Columbus schools and after her graduation from the high school in the city was engaged as a teacher in the city schools and taught there for five years, having been thus engaged up to the time of her marriage to Mr. Cooper. Mr. and Mrs. Cooper are earnest members of the Christian church at Greenfield., Mr. Cooper being the present secretary of the board of deacons of that congregation. For years he has been active in the business of the church and has held practically every office in the church save that of elder, having been one of the trustees of the church for more than ten years. He and his wife have a very pleasant home at 233 East North Street, which is the scene of much genial hospitality, and they are held in the highest esteem by their many friends hereabout. Mr. Cooper is a Mason and a member of the local commandery of the Knights Templar. He also is an active member of the local lodge of the Knights of Pythias and is past chancellor of the lodge.
Transcribed from History of Hancock County, Indiana, Its People, Industries and Institutions by George J. Richman, B. L., Federal Publishing Co., Indianapolis, Indiana, 1916. Pages 909-911.
Submitted by Sylvia (Rose) Duda, Laingsburg, MI September 27, 2001.
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