Local History and Genealogy

Saturday, August 7, 2010

William Ferrier

William Ferrier was born in New Rumley, Harrison County, Ohio, May 24, 1823, and was the oldest child of David and Susan Ferrier.  When a boy, his parents moved to Beaver Creek, near Pulaski, Ohio, where his father operated a saw mill and grist mill by water power.  When fifteen years of age, he commenced work for his father in these mills, and while so working, in 1838, his father sent him to what was then known as Union Mills, in LaGrange County, Indiana, for provision.  He came by way of Metz and Angola and crossed what was known as Fish Creek, east of the village of Metz.  This country was then new, almost wilderness, but he was impressed with this country and saw the advantages that a mill would be if located on Fish Creek, that afterwords persuaded his father to locate near that stream.

William Ferrier

In 1841 his father moved to Williams County, Ohio, and to Steuben County in 1846.  His grandfather, Andrew Ferrier, had moved to Fish Creek, one mile east of Metz, in 1844, where he built a grist mill and purchased a farm of another pioneer, John Croy, where he built his home.  He ran his grist mill by water power, and it was the pioneer mill of the kind in this part of the state.  In 1849 William Ferrier purchased this mill  from his grandfather's heirs, and improved and operated it for many years.  He also purchased his grandfather's farm and home after his death, including his father's store building and mercantile business, therein, and in 1849 he began store keeping and continued in business for eighteen years, when in 1867 he moved his store to the village of Metz, and went into partnership with his brother, Jacob Ferrier, where they continues in business for five years.  In 1872 he gave up active business life and moved his family to Angola, in which place he reside until his death which occurred on Thanksgiving day, November 28, 1907, at ten minutes past five o'clock in the afternoon, at the advanced age of eighty-four years, six months and four days.

On March 14, 1850, he was married to Olive Thompson.
Olive Thompson Ferrier
Mrs. Ferrier was born in Warren, Trumbull County, Ohio, March 20, 1831.  In her girlhood a school teacher, she brought to this new home longings for educational advantaged that the time and place could not satisfy, and with the passing years came the firm resolve that those given unto her to love and cherish should have opportunities and privileges that early days could not furnish,  Three children were born to them - Amanda, the wife of Dr. W. H. Waller, of Angola, William W and Dora, the latter wife of Stephen A. Powers, of Angola. 

In 1864 he and his wife became identified with the United Brethren Church known as Mt Pleasant cChurch near Metz, and until his death he was an earnest worker and devoted believer nithe teachings of that church and the Christian religion.  He was a pioneer of the old class.

In his early days he was deprived of the advantages of an education, but he believed in educational affairs and gave largely of his means to that end.  One of his latest donations was to the Tri-State College, and institution in which he took pride.  He was public spirited and gave of his means for helpful enterprises, only recently assisting the promotion of the new railroad in Angola.  He was not only generous in the expenditure and donation of his means for the advancement of religious work, but also very materially aided in the building and prosperity of our city.

Early in the sixties, by his liberal donations, he made it possible to erect a United Brethren Church building near Metz.  In 1899 he purchased the church edifice in Angola, formerly occupied by the Congregational society, and lots for a parsonage, which he afterward gave to a large extent, to the United Brethren church of this place, which church he assisted in organizing, and by liberal gifts he made it possible for its continuance to this day.  He also gave substantial support to the Congregational society since his residence in Angola and made it possible for that church to erect its present beautiful edifice.  Thus two Angola church congregations will long remember his generosity.

Steuben County Indiana Atlas 1880 Page 27-27
Steuben Republican December 4, 1907