John F. Johnson, for years one of the leading merchants of Fortville, this county, president of the First National Bank of that city, for twelve years or more a member of the local school board and in all ways interested in the promotion of the best interests of his home town, is a native of Ohio, but has been a resident of Fortville ever since beginning his business career and has long been thoroughly identified with the business interests of that thriving little city and with those of central Indiana in general. He was born on a farm in Van Wert county, Ohio, June 28, 1873. His father, Wilson Johnson, was born in Salisbury, North Carolina, and his mother, Calinda J. (Mills) Johnson, in Van Wert county, Ohio.
Wilson Johnson was but a boy, when his parents moved from North Carolina to Van Wert county, Ohio, and there he grew to manhood on a farm. When the Civil War broke out he enlisted for service in Company G., Fiftieth Regiment, Ohio Volunteer Infantry, and served with that command until mustered out at the close of the war. After his marriage he lived on a farm in Van Wert county for some years and the moved to Willshire, in that same county, where for some years he conducted a dry goods store. He later engaged in the mill and elevator business. He died in May, 1879. His wife died in March, 1913. They were the parents of two sons, John F. and Walter P. Johnson, the latter married Lulu B. Bean and lives in Adams county, this state.
John F. Johnson was reared in his native county in Ohio and received his elementary education in the public schools of Willshire, supplementing the same by a course in the School of Pharmacy at Ada, Ohio, from which he was graduated in 1894. In 1897 he came to Hancock county and located at Fortville, where he opened a drug store, and has ever since been engaged in the drug business in that city, long having been regarded as one of the leading merchants of that place. Mr. Johnson has given close attention to the general business conditions of his home town ever since locating there and since the year 1911 has been president of the First national Bank of Fortville.
On October 20, 1897, John F. Johnson was united in marriage to Ada R. Bobilya, daughter of George L. Bobilya and wife, of Willshire, Ohio, and to this union four children were born, Valeria M., Bessie G., Velma Jane and Margaret Irene. Mr. and Mrs. Johnson are members of the Methodist Episcopal church and take a proper interest in the various beneficences of the same, as well as in local good works generally, ever earnest promoters of all movements designed to advance the welfare of the community at large. Mr. Johnson is a Mason and an Odd Fellow and takes a warm interest in the affairs of these two popular organizations.
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 1100-1101.
Submitted by Sylvia (Rose) Duda, Laingsburg, MI November 17, 2001.
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