The Families of Adam Keith

The Founders and Pioneers


Bellville, Jefferson Twp. Richland Co. OH

Samuel Garber [1804-1893]/Catherine Leedy Garber [1809-1879]


Ancestry: Adam Keith1>Adam Keith2>Lewis Keith3>Elizabeth [Keith] m. [John] Leedy4>Catherine [Leedy] m. [Samuel] Garber5



OBITUARY: Richland Co., Ohio Obituaries - Samuel Garber, Source: BELLVILLE INDEPENDENT: 11 May 1893, Vol. 5, No. 52


" The INDEPENDENT today chronicles the history of one who has been a landmark so far in the history of the country. The children's children for ages to come will point back with pride to the life of Samuel Garber. Almost forgotten he was by the fast going times, but today we pause to do honor to the hero who so quietly passed over to the majority. We cannot do too much honor to those who endured the hardships of pioneer life, whose ax felled the mighty oak, whose courage defied the scalping knife of the Indian, enduring privations and want that these then "western wilds" might be made habitable for man. May the rising generation never forget the debt, while the Clearfork runs on to the gulf or the hills cast their shadows about them extol the memory of the noble and true.


Samuel Garber was born May 8, 1804, died April 27, 1893, aged 88 years, 11 months and 19 days. He was born at York, Pa., and died at the home of his son, Theodore, 2 miles east of Bellville, O.


His mother's maiden name was Anna Mock. His father, John Garber, enlisted in the war of 1812, and never returned, and is supposed to have been killed in the battle of Lundy's Lane, July 25, 1814. The family consisting of his mother and three sons, John, David and himself, moved to Morrison's Cove, Bedford Co., Pa., where his mother married Sim Brollier for her second husband.


After her marriage he lived for awhile with his uncle Jacob Mock, and afterward learned the shoemaker's trade with his stepfather. He also teamed for him over the mountains to Pittsburg, hauling the pig iron, which was prepared in the mountains, and now to the historic city of Johnstown, where he came near having a fatal accident by the breaking of ice while he was crossing the river with a heavy load of this iron.


In 1822, at the age of 18, he emigrated to Ohio with his uncle Jacob Mock's family, who settled in Knox County, near the north line, where the B. & O. R.R. now crosses. He worked at shoemaking for a short time, "Whipping the cat" as they called it, going around from house to house. He soon engaged to work for John Leedy who had settled at the early date of 1811, were Frank Garber now lives, near the south line of Richland County. At this date there were only fourteen families in the county, eleven in Mansfield and three outside. At one time they all fled to the Block House at Fredericktown to escape the ravages of the Indians in 1812.


On Sept. 17, 1825, he married Catharine Leedy, a daughter of his employer. He commenced housekeeping on the farm of is father-in-law, when his brother David lived. He entered Sec. 28, Jefferson Twp., where Hezekiah Sweet now lives and soon bought part of Sec. 35, the present home of his son-in-law, Aaron A. Leedy. He added to this and lived here till the death of John Leedy, his father-in-law, where he bought the old Leedy farm and moved on it in 1851. In 1863 he traded his farms for those of Aaron Leedy and Jacob Garber, located 2 miles east of Bellville. Here four years after celebrating their golden wedding, Mrs. Garber passed over to the majority, Oct. 24, 1879. His son, Benton Garber moved in and kept house for him till Nov. 1891, when Benton removed to the mill west of town. He then made his home with his son, Theodore, till the time of his death.


Father and mother Garber were blessed with nine children, nine of whom are living -- seven sons and two daughters. One daughter became the wife of Aaron A. Leedy, one of the first farmers of this county. Another the wife of O.B. Rummel of our town; John L. Garber, one of our first farmers; Lewis L. Garber, a well known mechanic of our town; L. Garber, an extensive farmer of St. Louis; David L. Garber, deceased, the father of Rev. Garber of Ashland; Elihu and Levi of our town; Jehu L. Garber, our much respected County Commissioner now on his second term; Washington L. Garber, in the powder business at Cincinnati; Theodore Garber, lives on one of the most beautiful farms in the Clearfork Valley, made so by his industry, the old Garber homestead in later years; Benton L. Garber, doing a first-class milling business west of town. It is due to say, and we will say it truthfully, that a more honorable, upright family cannot be found -- not a black sheep in the whole flock. They have not departed from the landmarks which the father and mother set up. There are forty-nine grandchildren and forty-six great-grandchildren living.


Father and mother Garber became members of the Universalist church about 1850, and continued to the end. They were faithful and consistent members. All their children living are members of the Universalist church together with the seven daughters-in-law, one son-in-law and twenty-three grandchildren -- forty-nine in all.


Samuel Garber was well fitted for the life of a pioneer. He was strong physically, mentally and morally. He was noted for his honorable dealing, and his neighbors and friends speak in very highest terms of his noble, upright, manly character. Industrious, honest, frugal and strong, he succeeded of course, and was blessed with a competence. He had no opportunities of education in his day and never attended anything but a writing school when he was twenty-one years old, yet he did all his figuring and calculating readily and was a great reader in his later life. All his possessions were tied up in a bandana handkerchief when he came from Pennsylvania. Father Garber began to distribute $1,500 to each of his children as they were married. He distributed thus to ten. Afterwards he increased this to $3,000 each. He leaves an estate yet of at least $20,000.


His funeral took place from the Universalist church in Bellville, April 29, 1893, Rev. John Richardson officiating. Interment at Bellville Cemetery. All the children were present except for Mrs. A. Leedy, who is quite ill. Six of the sons, full of manly strength, acted as pallbearers on this solemn occasion."