Thomas Blackwell, BiographyPorter County biographical sketches . . . .

Transcribed biography of Thomas Blackwell

THOMAS BLACKWELL, proprietor of the Chesterton Mills (or Poplar Tree Mills), was born in 1845, in Isham, England. He is one of seven children born to George and Mary (Brains) Blackwell, both natives of England. The elder Blackwell was a shepherd, and from near the home of Oliver Cromwell. The ancestors all led a pastoral life. When ten years of age, Mr. Blackwell was apprenticed to learn his trade, and went to school no more, on account of a distance of an overbearing "master" of the times. His indentures provided for seven years, but the firm failed, and he was given his liberty at fifteen years of age. From that time until his twenty-first year, he worked as a journeyman miller in England, and was always successful and determined in anything he essayed. He was now in poor health, on account of hereditary consumption, so he emigrated to America and spent a year and a half in studying American systems of milling, and with health improved returned to England expecting to stay. He married Milicent H. Leeson, a native of England, and a lady of taste and refinement. His health failing, he went to Canada, and had charge of two mills, one "three-tun" and one "five-run," but after about two years he came to Illinois. He was at St. Charles about six years engaged in his trade, including millwrighting, as all apprentices of that time had to learn. In December, 1875, he came to Chesterton and bought his present mills, including a grist of "three-run," saw-mill, planer, matcher and machine shop, now valued at of $10,000. His residence, situated near the mill, is a fine two-story frame, valued at over $2,000, finely situated. In politics, he has always been thoroughly independent.

Source: Goodspeed, Weston A., and Charles Blanchard. 1882. Counties of Porter and Lake, Indiana: Historical and Biographical, Illustrated. Chicago, Illinois: F. A. Battey & Company. 771 p.
Page(s) in Source: 291

This biography has been transcribed exactly as it was originally published in the source. Please note that we do not provide photocopies or digital scans of biographies appearing on this website.

Biography transcribed by Steven R. Shook


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