Biographical Sketches of Leading Citizens
Lawrence County Pennsylvania 1897


[p. 439] The subject of this sketch is one of the leading and best known men of Chewton, Wayne township, where he is engaged in conducting a general store under the firm name of William H. Marshall & Co. His birth occurred June 1, 1845. He grew up and worked with his father until he attained his majority, and then began teaching school. As he had lost his right arm in a threshing-machine he was unfitted for manual labor to any great extent, and so was thrown into other fields of labor. He sold sewing-machines for a while and in 1875 embarked in mercantile life in company with William O. Kirkland and Phillip Fisher, succeeding Jackson & Potter at Chewton. This venture proved successful and the trade of the new firm grew apace, thanks to the enterprise and energy of our subject and his partners. In 1895, the firm name was changed to William H. Marshall & Co., and the large general store, well stocked and fully equipped, continues to draw an ever increasing patronage. Mr. Marshall built a handsome modern home in 1892, and among the rest of his real estate holdings, he has several tenement houses in Wampum. In 1883, the firm of which Mr. Marshall was a leading partner built a large lime kiln in Wayne township, and that was afterwards sold for a handsome consideration to the cement company. He still retains his interest in the sandstone quarry. They also owned and operated quarries on the McMillen, Allen and McQuiston farms. Mr. Marshall is a man of thorough-going business methods, clean dealing, and honest principles.

Mr. Marshall won for his wife Edna McMillen, whose father is William McMillen of Wayne township. They have one son, Hermon Everett, who is a student. Mr. Marshall is a Republican, and has held minor township offices, and has been director of the schools. The family unite with the Presbyterian Church.

Mr. Marshall is a son of David C. and Margaret (Davidson) Marshall, grandson of John and Elizabeth Marshall and great-grandson of Hugh and Hannah Marshall. Hugh Marshall who was a native of northern Ireland, left the beautiful Emerald Isle at an early date and with his wife and children came to this country, making their first stopping-place in Pittsburg. From there Hugh Marshall in company with a Mr. Crawford set out for what is now Big Beaver township. They made a small clearing, but were hindered by the Indians to a great extent, and made little progress until William Penn made his memorable treaty with the Indians and bought the territory from them, by that act establishing peace between the savages and the advancing pioneers of civilization. There were four sons in this pioneer family: John, Robert, Hugh, and William, and the work of carrying on the improvements begun by Hugh Marshall fell to John, after his father's death.

In the course of time, by inheritance and by his own strong arm, John became the owner of four hundred acres of land, and was able to give to each of his sons a good farm of large dimensions. He was a stirring, hard-working pioneer, and brought about all the increase in his worldly possessions by his own efforts. He lived to the age of seventy-five, while his wife had reached the age of seventy-eight when she was called to lay down life's burdens and enter into rest. Their children were: David C., our subject's father; John; Marvin, who lives on the homestead; Margaret; and Hugh James. Mr. Marshall served in the War of 1812 as a private, being stationed at Fort Erie.

David C. Marshall spent his boyhood days and youth at home, and when he came of age he bought the Roberson farm of 104 acres, a great portion of which he cleared in the subsequent years of his occupancy. In 1857 he built a home on it, and made the whole place to take on a spirit of thrift and prosperity, adding extensive barns in 1873, and completing many other important improvements. He has had large interests in sheep-raising, but of late years because of the low tariff on wool, which has taken away a chance of profit in that industry, he has paid more attention to dairying and to grain producing. At the present time, because of the weight of his years, being in his eighty-second year, he rents the farm, and is leading a life that is to all intents and purpose retired.

Our subject's mother, Mrs. Margaret (Davidson) Marshall, whose father was a native of Ireland, was born in Beaver Co., Pa., July 1, 1815, and passed away July 5, 1895. The children in the parental family are as follows: Elizabeth Jane, who has devoted herself to caring for her parents in their declining years, and who is now keeping house for her father; John, whose biography is spread on another page of this work; Sarah Margaret, who married I. T. Spangler, and is now demised; Andrew, who died at the age of six; William Hillis, the subject of this narration; Mary M.; and Nancy Rachel, who died in girlhood. Originally, David C. Marshall was a Whig, but since the war he has been faithful to the principles of the Republican party. He has held various offices of trust in the township, and is a strong, virile character. It is scarcely necessary to say that this upright man and good citizen is receiving his just reward in the appreciation of his many friends and neighbors.

Biographical Sketches of Leading Citizens Lawrence County Pennsylvania
Biographical Publishing Company, Buffalo, N.Y., 1897

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