"John Earhart, born Oct 11, 1777, in the state of Pennsylvania, came here (Brown Co, OH) in the spring of 1815 (at age 38), and purchased the farm on which he ever afterward lived, located southwest of of Locust Ridge, now the property of George F. Moyer, and present residence of Lydia Thompson. Although he spent much of his time on his farm tilling the soil, he was a cooper by trade, and timber being plenty and of little value until manufactured into implements of utility, the profits of his labor were such as to enable him to live comfortably and happily.
He died in Feb, 1851, and was laid to rest in the little family graveyard on the farm. His sons - Adam, David, John, and William - are still living (when this history was written, which was 1883) Adam and William being present residents of the township. The former was born in Lancaster Co., Penn; came with his father to Ohio when boy not yet four years old, and lived at home until he married and moved on the farm on which he now lives; he also purchased part of the homestead of his father, which joined his first purchase. He (Adam) is in his seventy-first year, and has always made farming his occupation. William was born five years after his father settled at the old home. He, like his father, is a cooper, but does not work much at his trade of late."
Note that Benjamin is not mentioned as son of John in this biographical sketch. By 1880, Benjamin has been gone for more than 20 years Whoever gave the info for this sketch probably didn't know anything about him. Benjamin IS mentioned in John's will.
A cooper is one who makes barrels and casks.
Another biography, of son Adam Earhart, says John's wife's name was Martha, but no clues yet as to her maiden name.
Adam's biography says that John and Martha had 12 children. We have only accounted for nine. If there were 12 children, we believe they died at a young age, but it's possible that we may be missing a branch!
Per Beer's History of Brown Co, OH: "In the western part of the township, religious services were held at the residences of John Earhart and others as early as 1824, by Rev. Beck, a Methodist minister."
John would have been of age to have been in the War of 1812, but we have no evidence that he served. His boys would have been of age to have served in the Mexican - American War (1846-48), but, again, we have no evidence that any of them were. However, a bunch of John's grandchildren were in the Civil War. See our Veteran's Page.
The location of the Earhart home place, which is where John and Martha Earhart are buried, is: left off of Oakland-Locust Ridge Road just before the Locust Ridge city limits. The cemetery has been pastured and neglected for years, all the stones were down and broken in many pieces in 1976, when the Brown County Cemetery Index was made.
There are three Earharts shown as being buried in the family cemetery at Earhart Cemetery No. 1 who we have not been able to place in the family yet. We hope to be able to as time moves on: David, d 06/09/1868, age 72, Andrew H., d 1860, age 32, and Benjamin F, d 1845, age 13.
We have accounted for 387 descendants to date (588 counting spouses) to date, but we have lots of missing downlegs. We believe there are several thousand descendants of this pioneer couple.
Andrew's Civil War recap states: Andrew was the only person present when Gen. McPherson was killed at the battle in front of Atlanta. He (Thompson) was captured here. He is now (1883), and has been for nine years, Superintendent of the Brown County Infirmary. (History of Brown Co / Beers 1883).
Unlike many of his siblings, who seemed to stay in Ohio, Benjamin was a traveling sort. He migrated to Putnam Co, Missouri in 1854, when that area was still in its settling stage. Then, sometime in the late 1870's / early 1880's, he homesteaded in Cloud Co, Kansas (Homestead Certificate 3074, application 17117) and was there in the 1885 census. He was at an advanced age at this time, 83. He sold this farm and moved back to Putnam Co, MO where he died in 1894. Sarah followed him in 1903. See his Timeline Biography.
Per Beer's Brown County History: "Adam Earhart was born in December 24, 1811, and is a native of Pennsylvania. He is a son of John and Martha Earhart, both natives of Pennsylvania, where they matured and married about the year 1800. Thirteen years later, they emigrated to Virginia, and July, 1814, they pressed onward to Clermont County, Ohio, and in 1815, they moved to Pike Township, Brown Co, Ohio, where they purchased a farm and cultivated it until within a few years of his death, which occurred in Pike Township; our subject being the second son and fifth child of a family of twelve children, of whom six are living. He has been a resident of this county since 1815, where he was raised and schooled, in the pioneer days of the county, passing through many privations and hardships that can be described by only those that experienced the trials of those days.
In August 28, 1833, he married Nancy Shotwell, with whom he lived a long and pleasant life until July 7, 1877, at which time she died, leaving him and six children to survive her. Soon after his marriage, he began farming for himself as a renter; he continued renting for a period of seven years, when he bought eighty-two acres, where he now resides; has since added twenty-three acres, and now owns, in all 105 acres, which has undergone great changes, and is now a fine grain and stock farm operated well.
Mr. and Mrs. Earhart were the parents of nine children, of whom six are now living (in 1883) - Caroline, Alonzo C., Leavitt T., Benjamin, George, and Adam E."
Alonzo C. became a postmaster in Brown Co, Ohio, and was Postmaster in 1883. George was a charter member of the Pike Grange, No. 448 in 1874. Alonzo, Leavitt T., and Benjamin F. were in the Civil War. Another son, John, died at the age of 17, in 1870.
Adam's sons Leavitt T. and Benjamin F. both served in the Civil War. They both served in the Fifth Ohio Volunteer Cavalry, a unit in which several of their cousins were also in. Although most of the Earharts were shown as privates, Leavitt's record in Beers shows: "enlisted as a private, and was regularly promoted for good conduct to the rank of First Lieutenant."
William, according to his father's biography, was primarily a cooper (i.e. one who makes barrels, and possibly also wooden wagon wheels), one used to forming wood into curves.
About the researchers: Most of what we know about this family before 1900, is from the research of Linda Emry, who has been following this family for twenty years. Norris Taylor and Gay Nyce have joined with Linda recently with details of their branches and have helped fill in some "holes" here and there. This collaboration was made possible by connecting on the internet. We are still missing "live" people in parts of this large family and hope to connect with more branches as time goes on.
Linda is John > Benjamin > Samuel....
Norris is John > Benjamin > Martha Jane > Adolphus Millirons....
Gay is John > Adam > Benjamin Franklin....