Charles Thomas Casbon, BiographyPorter County biographical sketches . . . .

Transcribed biography of Charles Thomas Casbon

CHARLES THOMAS CASBON. Now living retired in a comfortable home on Monroe street in Valparaiso, Charles T. Casbon is one of the citizens of Porter county who came to this vicinity in early life, acquired a liberal share of material success, and through many years contributed substantially to the progress and development of the county. With prosperity he has also won esteem, and his career has been fruitful in the good citizenship and fine integrity, which are among the best assets of any community.

Mr. Casbon was born November 6, 1840, in Cambridgeshire, England, twenty-two miles from London, the son of an English farmer, Thomas Casbon and wife, Emma (Scruby) Casbon. When the son was five years old his father determined to bring his family to America, which was then a land of opportunities and almost undeveloped resources. The children at the time were Mary Ann, Sylvester, Charles and Jesse, and another daughter, Emma, was born after their arrival in this country. The sailing vessel on which they all embarked encountered adverse winds that after several weeks drove it back within sight of the starting point, and it was a long voyage before the western continent appeared. The boat came down the St. Lawrence river, and from Buffalo the family continued on to Cleveland. Thomas Casbon then walked on to Wooster, Ohio, where James Scruby, a brother of his wife and a farmer, lived, and having obtained a horse and wagon returned to Cleveland for his family. By this means they all arrived at a place ten miles from Wooster, on the old Cleveland and Columbus state road, where Thomas Casbon began his career in the new world. In time he was able to buy land and improved a good farm and became one of the prosperous men of that vicinity. His children grew up there and attended a neighboring schoolhouse of the type which has been described so often, with slab benches for seats and the other furnishings of a similar crude character. Thomas Casbon tried to supply his children with good reading, and was himself a man of unusual information. Throughout the years of his boyhood Charles Casbon was familiar with that old and trusted periodical journal, the New York Tribune, which regularly found its way to their home and was read more or less by all members of the household. Its great editor at the time, Horace Greeley, the author of the exhortation, "Go west, young man, and grow up with the country," frequently wrote and edited the news with that sentence as his text.

It was partly with the inspiration derived from the Tribune, and also from the spirit of pioneering which had possessed his father before him, that caused Charles Casbon on arriving at his majority to start for the west. In company with a friend, George Bittner, in March, 1862, he arrived at Valparaiso, a small place at that time, where he paused in his journey and in this vicinity has remained ever since, to his own profit and to the benefit of the community. For a time he worked among the farmers, then rented a farm and cultivated it on the shares, and was soon well started toward success.

On December 31, 1868, he returned to his Ohio home and there married Miss Mary E. Marrell, who has been his companion on the road of life for nearly forty-five years, Mrs. Casbon was born in Wayne county, Ohio, December 10, 1844, a daughter of Lawrence and Catherine (Haffelfinger) Marrell, her mother being of the solid Pennsylvania German stock. The five sons and two daughters in the Marrell family, all of whom obtained their schooling in the Fairview district school of Holmes county, were William, John, Philip, Elmer, Albertus, Jane and Mary.

After their marriage Mr. Casbon bought a little farm of forty acres, paying a hundred and fifty dollars in cash and going in debt for the remainder. A little log cabin and a pole stable constituted the chief improvements, and in this humble home the young people, with willing industry and the hope and enthusiasm characteristic of youth, began their career in Porter county. In a few years they bought eighty acres more, built a residence and farm buildings, planted shade trees and a choice variety of fruit trees, and many years ago were able to witness the substantial rewards or their efforts.

Four children were born to them: Lillie, who died at the age of one year, Lodema, Sina and Lawrence. The Jones district school, was where these children learned their first lessons, and Lawrence finished his education in the normal at Valparaiso. Lawrence Casbon, who is now a progressive young merchant of Mishawaka, Indiana, married Miss May Pauter, of Hudson, Michigan. Lodema is the wife of Hiram Church, a farmer whose home is two miles south of Valparaiso, and their children are Merritt, Leon and Mary. Miss Sina remains at home with her parents, and her kindly helpfulness is the comfort and resource of her father and mother. In 1903 Mr. Casbon established his home in Valparaiso, and since then has not been very actively connected with the occupation which he so successfully followed for many years. From August to October Mrs. Casbon visited the beautiful scenery of Yellowstone Park, also San Francisco, Los Angeles, Pasadena, Catalina Island, then Camp Meeker, Seattle, Washington, Spokane Falls, Salt Lake City (where she visited the great Mormon Temple) and finally Denver, Colorado.

Though always a busy man during his residence in the country, he had the welfare of his community at heart, and for a number of years filled the office of supervisor of his township. In politics he is a Democrat, and takes a broad-minded view of the social and political problems hath at home and at the nation at large. He and his wife are members and liberal supporters of the Christian church of Valparaiso.

Source: Lewis Publishing Company. 1912. History of Porter County, Indiana: A Narrative Account of its Historical Progress, its People and its Principal Interests. Chicago, Illinois: Lewis Publishing Company. 881 p.
Page(s) in Source: 459-461

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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