John Wesley Freer, BiographyPorter County biographical sketches . . . .

Transcribed biography of John Wesley Freer

JOHN WESLEY FREER. When public conditions are wholesome and normal the officials of township, county and state are usually men selected for their honesty and uprightness of character and in the case to follow this is agreeably true. In the following brief review we present the principal features in the record of a citizen of exceptional worth. Mr. Freer is a native son of Porter county, his birth having occurred in Center township, April 25, 1868, the eighth member of a family of nine children, four of whom were sons and five daughters. His parents are John A. and Sarah R. (DeWitt) Freer. Five of the children survive at the present time. Catherine is the wife of C. P. Sears, an agriculturist and resident of Center township; James C., is married and resides in Severy, Kansas, where he engages in farming; Reuben, married and a citizen of Washington township, is likewise devoted to the great basic industry; the subject is next in order of birth; and Carrie, youngest of the number, is the widow of Joseph Hamilton and makes her home in Westville, Indiana. Father Freer was a native of the Empire state his birth having been in Ulster county, July 2, 1826, and on August 16, 1908, in Morgan township, he was summoned from what had been the scene of his usefulness for many years. He was by trade a carpenter and joiner and he and his worthy wife were united in the holy bonds of matrimony in the state of New York. When they faced towards the west, La Porte, Indiana, was their objective point, and when they arrived within the boundaries of the Hoosier state they located near Rolling Prairie. The father rented land for awhile and then bought twenty acres of good land in Morgan township, the present homestead of their son John. In the matter of politics the elder Mr. Freer was a Democrat and he was held in high regard by his fellow citizens, who eloquently expressed their confidence in him by electing him overseer of his township and then many times reelecting him, until his tenure of office was of fifteen or twenty years duration. He was also at various times connected with the government of the public schools, and both he and his wife were faithful members of the Presbyterian church. He was an honest and upright man and enjoyed the respect of his community. Both he and his wife are interred in the Adams cemetery in Morgan township. Mother Freer was a native of Ulster county, New York, her birthdate having been December 30, 1827, and that of her death, October 1, 1907. She was a wise and loving mother and every day her beautiful Christian character was displayed, and her teachings will ever live in the heart of her son John, who cherishes and reveres the memory of his loved parents. The subject's deceased sister, Rose, was the wife of Clayton Humphrey and the mother of two children, as follows: Ralph, a practical agriculturist, educated in the public schools and now residing with his uncle, the subject; and Vernie, a young girl in charge of her uncle's household. The latter was educated in the public schools, and has added to her culture with much choice and elevating reading. She is a member of the Christian church. Her father also resides with Mr. Freer and their home is a happy and contented one, where geniality and cordiality exist.

Mr. Freer has devoted his entire active life to agriculture. He received only common school advantages and by his own exertions has greatly added to his culture, with such means within his power as good literature. Still a young man, a career of usefulness and honor doubtless lies before him. He possesses the universal respect and esteem of the people of Morgan township, as has been shown by the positions of trust which he has been given. Politically he gives hand and heart to the men and measures of the Democratic party, the first presidential vote cast by him was for General Hancock, and ever since he has supported every candidate put up by the party.

In 1900 Mr. Freer was elected assessor of Morgan township, and so worthily did he fill this office that he was re-elected by a handsome majority on the Democratic ticket, despite the fact that the township is Republican. Again, the citizens of Morgan township, seeing in him the honesty and straightforwardness of his character, elected him to the highest office in their bestowal -- township trustee -- of which he is the present incumbent. This election was in 1908. He has seven good schools under his supervision at the present and a corps of competent instructors. He has erected seven iron bridges in the township and more are in anticipation. The highways are in excellent condition for gravel foundation; in short, the whole township is in a prosperous state which speaks much in his favor.

In the spring of 1912 he was appointed as delegate to the state convention held at Indianapolis for the purpose of nominating the state officers of the Democratic party.

Mr. Freer's farm is located nine miles southeast of the city of Valparaiso. It has excellent buildings and is known by the poetical appellation, "The Lone Willow Farm." His home is the abode of true hospitality. His life has ever been an open volume for the public inspection and he is everywhere known for his fine character. It is indeed a pleasure to the biographer to chronicle these facts to be preserved in the History of Porter county, Indiana.

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: 594-596

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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