James Madison Larimore, M. D.

Dr. James Madison Larimore, retired, who for may years was one of the best-known and most successful physicians in this part of the state, a practitioner in Hancock county since 1877 and a resident physician of Greenfield since 1893, is a native Hoosier, having been born on a farm in the neighborhood of Eagle village, in Boone county, this state, June 12, 1843, son of Joseph and Mary (McIntyre) Larimore, the former a native of North Carolina and the latter of southern Indiana.

Joseph Larimore was but a boy when his parents moved from North Carolina; pushing on west until they reached the Madison neighborhood of Indiana, where, at Brooksburg, about eight miles above Madison, on the Ohio river, they settled. The Larimores had very little of this world's goods and they had pushed a hand cart carrying their small belongings all the way from their former home in North Carolina to their new home in Indiana, much of the labor of this difficult method of transportation falling upon the lad, Joseph. Upon locating in Indiana the elder Larimore and his son worked at whatever their hands could find to do, the father being glad to work for twenty-five cents a day and the son for one-half that amount, taking their pay in bacon ad such other provisions as passed current in the channels of trade in those days, the settler of that period having might little, if any, money. Amid these conditions, Joseph Larimore grew to manhood at Brooksburg and there he married Mary McIntyre, daughter of a pioneer and immediately thereafter moved to Boone county, this state, that section of Indiana then being little better than wilderness, and bought a small farm in the vicinity of Eagle village, where the family lived until in 1856, in which year they moved over into Illinois and settled in Hancock county, where Joseph Larimore bought a quarter of a section of land and established a new home and there he spent the rest of his life, his death occurring when he was about sixty-three years of age. His wife had preceded him to the grave some years before. Joseph Larimore was a Democrat and a member of the Masonic fraternity. He and his wife were members of the Christian church. They were the parents of five children, three of whom died in infancy and of the other two Doctor Larimore now is the only survivor, his brother, Thomas Jefferson, having died at the age of thirty-eight years.

James M. Larimore received his schooling in the primitive schools in the neighborhood of his boyhood home in Boone county, this state, and later in Hancock county, Illinois, and grew up with a full appreciation of the hardships attending life on a pioneer farm. When the Civil War broke out he enlisted in Company , Seventh Missouri Cavalry, and served under General Curtis and later under General Sigel, in Missouri, doing scouting and general guard duty in the campaign against the guerillas. During the battle of Lone Jack he was severely wounded in the arm and was taken to the hospital at Macon, Missouri. He presently recovered, however, and rejoined his regiment and participated in the battle of Pea Ridge. He received his honorable discharge in 1863 and upon the conclusion of his military service returned to his home in Illinois. From the days of early boyhood James M. Larimore's mind had turned to the contemplation of the thought of being a physician and he presently entered seriously upon the study of medicine. Thus equipped by preparatory study, he entered the College of Physicians and Surgeons at Keokuk, Iowa, from which institution he was graduated in 1867. Instead of immediately entering upon the practice of his profession, Doctor Larimore engaged as a traveling salesman for a wholesale tobacco house at St. Louis and was thus engaged for some years, in the meantime saving sufficient money to see him through a post-graduate course in the College of Physicians and Surgeons at Keokuk, from which he received his supplementary degree in 1877. Thus admirably equipped for the practice of his noble profession, Doctor Larimore returned to Indiana and located at Carrollton, in Brandywine township, this county, now known as Finly- the original of the poet Riley's famous "little town o' Tailholt;"- and there he remained in the active practice until in July, 1893, at which time he moved to Greenfield and opened an office in the Arcade building, where he continued his practice until his retirement in 1907. During his long and active career as a physician in this county, Doctor Larimore has prospered, as he deserved to prosper, being the owner of four hundred and thirty-five acres of find land in this county, a handsome home in Greenfield and other substantial possessions.

On July 11, 1878, Dr. James M. Larimore was united in marriage to Florence C. Taylor, who was born on a farm in Center township, this county, five miles northwest of Greenfield, April 1, 1860, daughter of William and Caroline (Martindale) Taylor, prominent residents of that community. William Taylor was born in Warren, Ohio, April 30, 1831, and was about one year old when his parents moved to this county, settling in Center township, where they spent the rest of their lives, becoming substantial and useful members of that neighborhood. William Taylor grew to manhood on the home farm and remained a farmer all his life, being at the time of his death the owner of a fine farm of one hundred and twenty acres. On May 2, 1851, William Taylor was united in marriage to Caroline Martindale, who was born on a farm northeast of Greenfield,, her parents having been pioneers of that part of the county, September 16, 1835, and to this union ten children were born, of whom four grew to maturity, as follow: Florence C., who married Doctor Larimore; Mary, who married Charles Williams, a Hancock county farmer, both of whom are now deceased; Rose, now deceased, who married Benjamin McClarren, of Maxwell, this county, and Sarah, who married Charles Mauck, of Newcastle, who now is county surveyor of Henry County. William Taylor and his wife were earnest members of the Methodist church, Mr. Taylor for many years having been an office bearer in that church, and their children were reared in that faith. It is noteworthy that Mr. and Mrs. Taylor presented the bell now used in Curry's chapel in Center township. Mr. Taylor was an ardent Republican and during the activities of the Grange in this part of the state was one of the leaders in that interesting organization. He died in 1900, being then sixty-nine years of age, and his widow survived until 1913, she being seventy-eight years of age at the time of her death.

To Dr. James M. and Florence C. (Taylor) Larimore five children have been born, namely: Gertrude, who married the Rev. M. H. Lichliter, a minister of the Methodist church, now stationed at Cleveland, Ohio; Nellie, who married David Griffith, a draftsman, now living in New York City; Dr. Joseph W. Larimore, a graduate of the Washington University, of St. Louis, now practicing his profession in that city, where he is a Scottish Rite Mason; James T., who is a student of the Greenfield schools, now preparing for college, and Iva, who died at the age of nineteen months. Doctor and Mrs. Larimore are members of the Methodist Episcopal church, the doctor being a member of the official board of the same, and for years have taken an active part in the social and cultural affairs of their home community, being held in high esteem by their many friends throughout the county. Doctor Larimore is one of the most active members of the Greenfield post of the Grand Army of the Republic and for years has been the post surgeon. He is a Republican, with somewhat independent views, and has ever given his thoughtful attention to political affairs, though never having been an aspirant for public office. Doctor Larimore is a thirty-second degree Mason, a member of the blue lodge of that order at Greenfield, and of the chapter, the council and the commandery of the order in the same city, being eminent commander of Greenfield Commandery No. 39, Knights Templar. He is a member of the Indianapolis Consistory and of Murat Temple, Ancient Arabic Order, Nobles of the Mystic Shrine, at Indianapolis, in the affairs of all of which departments of Freemasonary he takes a warm interest.

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 830-833.

Submitted by Sylvia (Rose) Duda, Laingsburg, MI September 11, 2001.


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