Biographical Sketches of Leading Citizens
Lawrence County Pennsylvania 1897


[p. 566] is a prominent blacksmith of East Brook, Hickory township, Pa. He was born in Middle Lancaster, Butler County, Nov. 30, 1843. He attended the district school, and after completing the course of study found employment on a farm until 1864, when he obeyed the call of his bleeding country, and enlisted in Battery E, 2nd Pa. Art., attached to the 112th Reg. Pa. Vol. Inf., commanded by Col. Strawbridge. Mr. Ruby was severely wounded on the battle-field of Seven Pines, May 31, 1864, but did not leave his company, and bravely remained in the service of "Old Glory," until he was discharged under the general order at the cessation of hostilities.

On his return from the field of carnage, he began work in the trade of blacksmithing under the instruction of John Eppinger of Middle Lancaster, and the artilleryman became the artisan, and for three years after he had learned his trade, lived at New Castle. Returning to Middle Lancaster, his early home, he remained there until the spring of 1879, when he removed to East Brook, which has been his permanent location since. In 1871, having found a suitable partner, Mary Lehman, daughter of John Lehman of Middle Lancaster, accepted his hand and became his wife. The children, who constitute the household are: William H., born May 29, 1872; Alice J., June 8, 1874; Annie, now deceased, born March 29, 1876; Benjamin F., Feb. 19, 1878; Sadie J., Sept. 11, 1879; Catherine M., Aug. 21, 1881; and Harry J., April 23, 1887. In matters of religious interest, Mr. Ruby adheres to the faith of the German Reformed Presbyterian Church, while his wife and children have identified themselves with the M. E. Church. He is a member of Portersville Lodge, No. 909, I. O. O. F., of Portersville, Pa. William H., the eldest son, who learned his father's trade and is associated with him in business, is a member of the East Brook Cornet Band, a flourishing organization of six years growth, and one which is coming into public favor very rapidly. Father and son are Democrats. Mr. Ruby served as constable in Middle Lancaster, and as deputy sheriff under Sheriff Kelley of Butler Co.; William H. Ruby is at present an inspector of elections. Mr. Ruby has in his years of mechanical labor repaired and set up countless pieces of machinery, and by only turning out articles of the best workmanship has risen in his trade, and established a solid reputation in his line of business.

Henry Ruby, father of John N., received his education in the schools of Middle Lancaster, and on leaving school took up farming for a livelihood, and never changed his occupation. In political belief, he was a Whig, but later devoted himself to the Democratic party. He selected his helpmeet in the person of Ruth A. Campbell, daughter of Henry Campbell. Interesting events in the family history are the births of these children: Robert, deceased; John N., whose name is the heading of this sketch; George W., who married Catherine Kerr of East Brook—two children came to bless their union, Nettie and Sarah; Mary, who became the wife of Christian Lehman of Middle Lancaster, and has a son, John; Leah, who married William Lutz, and bore the following children, Annie, Louisa, Agnes, Leah, George, William, and an infant; and Martha, deceased. The Ruby family belonged to the Lutheran Church. Henry Ruby died in 1861, aged sixty-one years, and Mrs. Ruby remained with her children until 1894, when she entered into rest at the age of seventy-nine.

John Ruby, the grandfather, was of English parentage, and after his emigration to America, he settled in Maryland, in the vicinity of Hagerstown, and finding the soil fruitful began its culture, continuing after his removal to Butler Co., Pa. He made a comfortable living, and was esteemed a prosperous man in his day. His views, politically, were in sympathy with those of the Whigs. In the War of 1812, he served with distinction, although in the ranks as a private. His wife was Maggie Bumgardner, who was brought from Germany by her parents in her infancy. Their children were: William; Henry, the father of John N.; James; John; Job; Mary; Elizabeth; Charity; Catherine; and Deborah. They were adherents of the Lutheran faith. Mrs. Ruby died in 1845, her husband surviving until 1873.

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

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Updated: 17 Jul 2001