euben T. Webb. One of the respected and venerable citizens of Randolph Township, Tippecanoe County, and an honored veteran of the Civil War is Reuben T. Webb, who was born on the 28th of March, 1817, in Jackson Township, Brown County, Ohio, a son of Reuben H. and Annie (Thompson) Webb. He springs from sterling English ancestry on both the paternal and maternal sides. The founders of the Webb family in America settled in Virginia in colonial days, and representatives of the name fought for the independence of the nation. Reuben H. Webb was a native of Orange County, that state, was reared there on a farm, and when a young man went to Kentucky, where he married Miss Thompson, a daughter of James Thompson. Her father was a native of England, and having crossed the Atlantic took up his residence in Pennsylvania, whence he afterward removed to Kentucky, and from there to Brown County, Ohio, becoming one of the substantial farmers of the last named place. He took no active part in the Revolutionary war. He was a member of the Methodist Church, a straightforward and honorable businessman, and his death occurred when he was about eighty years of age. His children were James, Annie, Elizabeth, Alice and Minta.
Reuben H. Webb located near Cynthiana, Kentucky, at the time of his marriage and conducted a tavern for several years. Subsequently he went to Brown County, Ohio, where he purchased and partially cleared one hundred and sixty acres of land, but not being able to secure a clear title to the property he lost it. He then settled on a new farm of fifty acres in the woods, which by dint of hard work he converted into a comfortable pioneer home. He was a very energetic and enterprising man and his business methods were above question. He, too, belonged to the Methodist Church, and in his political belief was a stanch Jacksonian Democrat. He died at the age of eighty years, having reared an excellent family. His children were Reuben T., Mary Ann, James, Rittie Ann, Elizabeth, Alexander, Alice, Jacob, Nathaniel and George; and Nathaniel died in early manhood.
In the pioneer schools of Brown County, Ohio, Reuben T. Webb acquired his early education. School was conducted on the subscription plan and was held in a little log building with a stick chimney and an immense fireplace, ten feet long. On the fire was placed a high backlog, which was rolled in by the big boys and would last two days. Windows were made by taking out a section of a log from the side of the room and covering the aperture with greased paper. The cabin floor, seats and desks were made of puncheon, and the instruction was almost as primitive as the furnishings of the schoolhouse. Mr. Webb attended school only until he was nine years of age, for after that his services were needed on the farm. When a youth of thirteen he began learning the cooper's trade, which he readily mastered. He was a large, strong boy and could do a hard day's work, taking the timber from the tree and making it into barrels. He worked for one year and received half the sum that came from his work --- two hundred dollars, which was quite remarkable wages for a boy in those days. He gave his money to his father and it proved a great help in paying for the family homestead. He afterward worked in a carpenter shop on his father's farm and his great industry made him very capable.
On the 5th of May, 1835, in Brown County, Ohio, when only eighteen years of age, Mr. Webb married Miss Annie Sidwell, who was born in that county, November 13, 1816, her parents being Henry and Casandra (Slack) Sidwell. Her father was of English descent, his parents having come from England at an early day and located in Mason County, Kentucky. Henry Sidwell became a farmer of Brown County, Ohio, where he secured one hundred and sixty acres of wild land, which he cleared and improved, making it a valuable property. He set out a good orchard, transformed the place into fertile fields, and throughout his remaining days continued its further development and improvement. He belonged to the Methodist Church and gave his political support to the Whig Party. His life was an honorable one, and his death, which occurred when he was about sixty years of age, was mourned by many friends. His children were Horace, John, Sewell, Hugh, Henry (who died in childhood), Annie, Jane, Emily, Warren, Ellis, Abraham and Catherine.
Mr. and Mrs. Webb began their domestic life upon his father's farm. He worked at the cooper's trade for some years, and on the 1st of October, 1849, removed to Indiana, making the journey with horses and wagon and reaching his destination after eleven days of travel. He brought his family with him and spent the first winter in Wingate, Montgomery County, but in the spring came to Tippecanoe County, locating on the division line between Jackson Township and Fountain County. During the next few years he resided on several different farms and in 1861 purchased the property in Corwin, where he now makes his home. The marriage of Mr. and Mrs. Webb was blessed with seven children: Casandra; John H., who died at the age of five months; Reuben Horace; Emily; James; Ellis and Elizabeth.
On the 12th of October, 1861, in Corwin, Mr. Montgomery enlisted, under Captain Henry Leaming, in Company C, Fortieth Regiment of Indiana Volunteers, to serve for three years. After fifteen months, however, he was honorably discharged, on account of blindness. He participated in the battle of Shiloh under Buell and many skirmishes on the way from that point to Corinth and on to Perryville. He was about forty-five years of age at the time of his enlistment, but was a very rugged man, and though past the age limit was accepted. He was ill with lung fever in the hospital before he went to the front, but was granted a furlough and returned home. On recovering he rejoined his regiment, then in the south, and afterward suffered from the jaundice, but was not placed in the hospital. After the battle of Shiloh he nursed the sick for eight months, until at last he was stricken with blindness while in camp in front of Corinth. Thus totally disabled for military service he was honorably discharged, and has never yet recovered his sight. He was a most patriotic and loyal soldier and the same qualities were manifest by two of his sons, who went to the front. James, who was in the Twentieth Indiana Infantry, re-enlisted in the United States Regular Army and served for about six years. He acted as one of the guards to Jefferson Davis, when the president of the Confederacy was held as a prisoner in Fortress Monroe. James participated in many battles and faithfully followed the stars and stripes for almost a decade. He is now deceased. Reuben Horace served for four years in the Sixty-third Indiana Infantry, veteranizing and participating in many battles. He was wounded in the battle of Resaca, but recovered from his injuries. Franklin L. Perkins, a son-in-law of Mr. Montgomery, was also in the army, as a member of the Sixty-third Indiana, and died of typhoid fever.
After the war Mr. Webb returned to his home in Corwin and has been totally blind ever since. He and his wife are both sincere and faithful members of the Methodist Church and contribute liberally to its support. The lady united with the church in Brown County, Ohio, when only fourteen years of age, and Mr. Webb became a member in the same county, at the age of twenty years, since which time they have lived faithful to the teachings of the church, following in the footsteps of the Master. Mr. Webb cast his first presidential vote for William Henry Harrison and voted with the Whig Party until 1856, when he supported John C. Fremont, and has since been an earnest and zealous Republican. His patriotism has ever been most marked, his loyalty to all duties of citizenship is one of the prominent traits in his character, and he has ever endeavored to instill into the minds of his children the same commendable principles. He and his faithful wife have traveled life's pathway together for sixty-four years, their mutual love and confidence increasing as time has passed. Many descendants now revere and honor them, and a large circle of warm friends esteem them for their sterling worth.