Fred V. Hardin, son of Charles V. and Susan (Marsh) Hardin, was born in Fortville, Indiana, February 14, 1876. His father was a native of Pennsylvania, his mother of Indiana. Fred V. Hardin was educated in the public schools at Fortville and for fifteen years was employed in the general merchandise store of A. J. Wetsel, in Fortville. In 1908 he engaged in the grocery business on his own account, and is still in that business. He was married in 1897 to Grace E. Bills, of Fortville; they have two boys, Philip N., and Richard V. They are members of the Methodist Episcopal church. Mr. Hardin's fraternal affiliations are with the Free and Accepted Masons, the Knights of Pythias, the Independent Order of Odd Fellows and the Modern Woodmen of America. His political affiliation is with the Republican party. He served four years as clerk and treasurer of the town board, and is now on the fourth year of his term as president of the board.
Fred V. Hardin is of Scotch-Irish lineage. On the paternal side his great-grandfather was Isaiah Hardin, who was of Irish descent and was a resident for many years in Delaware. He died in Philadelphia, June 30, 1821, in the fifty-fourth years of his age. He became the father of eleven children as follow: William, Susannah, Thomas, Isaiah, Philip, Mary A., Elizabeth, Margaret, Catherine, John and Jacob.
Philip Hardin, the fifth son of Isaiah, and the grandfather of Fred V., was born in Delaware, but removed with his parents to Philadelphia when but a small boy. He was engaged in the tobacco business in Philadelphia for several years, associated in that business with his brother, William. In 1839 he removed to Huntsville, Indiana, making the journey by wagon which required six weeks of tedious travel. He bought a farm of eighty acres, located near Alfont, but only resided on the farm for one year when he returned to Huntsville where he learned the wagon-making trade. He afterward established a wagon and blacksmith shop, associated with his brother, John, and carried on that business for many years. He died on February 5, 1878. He was an active member of the Baptist church. His widow survived him for several years; she died in April, 1887, at the home of her daughter, Margaret, in Pendleton, Indiana. His wife's maiden name was Mary Freeborn, who was born on April 22, 1808, the daughter of Robert and Mary (Ingham) Freeborn. The other children in the family of Robert and Mary Freeborn were: Elizabeth, Catherine, Margaret, Mary L., and Charles V., all born in Philadelphia; John, William and Evelyn were born in Huntsville.
Robert Freeborn, father of Mrs. Hardin, was of Scotch ancestry. He was a seafaring man, being captain of a vessel, and followed this vocation for the most of his active years. After the death of his wife he made his home with his daughter, Elizabeth, in Philadelphia.
Charles V. Hardin, father of the subject of this sketch, was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, September 26, 1838. He was the fifth in the family of Philip and Mary (Freeborn) Hardin. In 1840, when about eighteen months old, he came with his parents to Indian, and was reared and educated in Huntsville. On August 12, 1862, he enlisted as a private in Company G., Twelfth Regiment, Indiana Volunteer Infantry. This company was organized by Capt. James Huston. The regiment was commanded by Col. William H. Link, who died from wounds received in the battle of Richmond, Kentucky, and was succeeded in command of the regiment by Lieut-Col. Reuben Williams, who commanded the regiment during the remainder of its service and was breveted brigadier general at the close of the war. Charles V. Hardin served until the close of the war and was mustered out with his regiment at Washington, D.C., June 8, 1865. He participated in the battle of Richmond, Kentucky, August 30, 1862, in which the regiment suffered severe loss in killed and wounded, and most of the regiment were taken prisoners; Mr. Hardin being among the number. After being exchanged the regiment was sent to Grant's army, operating in Mississippi, and it became a part of the Fifteenth Army Corps, commanded by Gen. John A. Logan. Under this command Mr. Hardin participated with his regiment in the battles of Vicksburg and Jackson, Mississippi; and then joined Sherman's army and participated in the battles of Missionary Ridge, Resca, Dallas, New Hope church, Kenesaw Mountain, Nickajack creek, the several battles around Atlanta, the battle of Jonesboro, the march to the sea, the battle at Savannah, Georgia; the battles of Griswoldville and Columbia, South Carolina; and Raleigh and Bentonville, North Carolina. He then participated with his regiment in the Grand Review in Washington, at the close of the war, and was soon afterward discharged.
Mr. Hardin was a blacksmith by trade and worked at this trade prior to enlisting in the army. On his return from the army he set up a shop at Alfont where he worked at his trade until 1874, when he changed his location and business to Fortville. In 1891 he was appointed postmaster at Fortville, under the administration of President Harrison, and held the office for four years, after which he resumed his work in the blacksmith ship for four years, when another change occurred and Mr. Hardin was re-appointed postmaster under the administration of President McKinley, and continued in office until the administration of President Taft. Since then he has not been actively engaged in business.
Charles V. Hardin has been a Republican from the time of the organization of the party. He cast his first vote for Abraham Lincoln, and has voted for all the Republican candidates for president since that time. He is a member of Sol. D. Kempton Post No. 228, Grand Army of the Republic, and has held all the offices of the post, including three years as post commander. For the past several years he has been adjutant of the post. He is a member of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows; has passed through all the chairs of the lodge, and has represented the local organization in the grand lodge of the state. He is a charter member of the local lodge of the Improved Order of Red Men; has been sachem and has represented the lodge in the grand council of the order in the state:
Charles V. Hardin was married on January 19, 1860, to Cynthia S. Marsh, a native of Madison county, Indiana, a daughter of David and Sarah Jane (Jordan) Marsh, he a native of Ohio and she of Virginia. They were among the early settlers of Madison county, Indiana, coming to that county with their parents at an early day in the history of the county. There were seven children in the family of Mr. and Mrs. Hardin, namely: William D., Maude F., who married E. N. Gray; Jesse L., Neva K., Fred V., Len and John M. Mr. and Mrs. Hardin are members of the Methodist Episcopal church.
Transcribed from History of Hancock County, Indiana, Its People, Industries and Institutions by George J. Richman, B. L., Federal Publishing Co., Indianapolis, Indiana, 1916. Page 1061-1064.
Submitted by Sylvia (Rose) Duda, Laingsburg, MI November 8, 2001.
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