James Edmund Bryant, BiographyPorter County biographical sketches . . . .

Transcribed biography of James Edmund Bryant


Special adaptability to any particular calling in life is the one necessary adjunct to permanent success. No matter how much the determination which characterizes a man's start in business, unless he is to the manner born, he will find to his sorrow that his line has been falsely cast, and the quicker he draws aside and takes up another calling, the better it will be for him. The career of James Edmund Bryant has been a successful one, and he is today in the enjoyment of a competency which is the result of noble energies rightly applied. He is a member of the firm of J. E. Bryant & Co., grain dealers of Hebron, Indiana, and as he was born in this city March 5, 1839, and has resided here all his life, he is deeply interested in the progress and welfare of the place, and has lent material aid in its improvement. Simeon and Elizabeth (McCauly) Bryant, who were among the first settlers of Boone Township, Porter County, Indiana. The father is of German descent, and is a relative of the eminent American poet, William Cullen Bryant. Both parents were born in Sandusky County, Ohio, but about 1835 removed to Indiana and settled near Pleasant Grove, Lake County, but they soon after came to Boone Township, Porter County, and here made his home until his death, which occurred in 1871. Politically he was an ardent Republican, and during the progress of the Civil War was an abolitionist. He and his wife were connected with the Methodist Episcopal Church, and the latter survived him until July, 1893. In the public schools of Hebron, James E. Bryant received his early educational training, but later he attended school at Valparaiso, Indiana, then pursued his literary education in the State University at Bloomington, and finally finished at Valparaiso. After completing his education he returned to Hebron, soon after which he enlisted in the Fifth Indiana Cavalry as Sergeant of Company I, with which he served for nearly three years, participating in many severe skirmishes. He was several times surrounded by the enemy, one time had his horse shot from under him and barely escaped with his life. He was captured at Sunshine Church, Georgia, while on the Stoneman raid, which was organized for the purpose of capturing Macon, at which time Mr. Bryant was acting as orderly and was carrying messages. He afterward had several opportunities of escaping, but would not desert his friends who could not go with him. He was kept a prisoner at Andersonville for about a month, was later removed to Florence, where he was exchanged near the close of the war. At the close of the war he returned to Hebron where he followed farming for about a year, then turned his attention to mercantile pursuits at Hebron, but his establishment unfortunately burned down November 24, 1891. During all this time he was engaged in the buying and selling of grain also, and now carries on this business exclusively, being more than ordinarily successful. His business has run from $20,000 to $40,000 per year. During the administration of President Lincoln he was appointed Postmaster of Hebron, but was removed by Andrew Johnson. Later he was returned to the position by Congress, and held the office continuously for twelve years. He has always been a Republican politically, has served his township as Trustee, and has always been prominent in the political affairs of his section. In April, 1871, he married Sarah S. Pratt, a native of Crown Point and a daughter of C. N. Pratt, one of the old and honored residents of the county. To Mr. and Mrs. Bryant three children have been born, two of whom survive: William P., born March 31, 1872, and died October 14, 1873; Nellie, born June 3, 1874, and Florence born September 12, 1889. Mr. Bryant is the owner of a magnificent stock farm about one-half mile south of the village, where he gives considerable attention to the raising of that noble animal, the horse. He is a member of Walter's Post of the G. A. R., belongs to the I. O. G. T. at Hebron, and is an active member of the Methodist Episcopal Church at that place. He is a worthy citizen in every respect, which fact is borne out by the good will and esteem of his fellow citizens.

Source: Goodspeed Brothers. 1894. Pictorial and Biographical Record of La Porte, Porter, Lake and Starke Counties, Indiana. Chicago, Illinois: Goodspeed Brothers. 569 p.
Page(s) in Source: 333-334

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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