George Maxwell, BiographyPorter County biographical sketches . . . .

Transcribed biography of George Maxwell


This citizen is one of the prominent farmers and old soldiers of Pleasant Township, Porter County, Indiana. He inherits much of his push and energy from his Irish ancestors, his parents, John and Dorinda (Morrison) Maxwell, coming from Dublin, Ireland. The father was a horsemen in the old country, but about 1836, he crossed the ocean and first settled in Canada. Later he moved to LaPorte County, Indiana, in 1842, where he entered a tract of land. To this he subsequently added 160 acres, which made him a good home, and here he resided until his death, on the 24th of April, 1872, when sixty-eight years of age. He became a substantial farmer, was highly respected, and held a number of local offices, among them being Township Trustee and Treasurer. In the old country he and wife were members of the Church of England, but after coming to America they united with the Presbyterian Church, in which Mr. Maxwell was deacon for many years. To Mr. and Mrs. Maxwell were born eight children, as follows: William, John, Arthur, Edward, Susannah, George, Maria and Mary A. Mr. Maxwell was an industrious, hardworking man, and taught his children lessons of perseverance and industry, which have remained with them through life. In politics he was first a Democrat, but during the Rebellion he became a strict Republican. George Maxwell, our subject, was born on his father's farm, in Pleasant Township, Porter County, March 22, 1844, and received his education in the old log schoolhouse of that day. He began his career as a farmer when seventeen years of age, and on the 5th of August, 1862, he enlisted in Capt. Rollin M. Pratt's Company I, Seventy-third Regiment, Indiana Volunteer Infantry, and served until honorably discharged at Indianapolis, July 5, 1865, having served his country faithfully for three years. During this time he was never sick and was ever ready for active service. His first battle was at Stone River, where, out of his company of thirty-two men, sixteen were killed and wounded, and every one wounded subsequently died. After this battle the Federal troops fortified the town of Murfreesboro, and, about April 1, our subject's regiment went with Col. Straight's raid through Alabama and Georgia, the object being to prevent the Confederates from reaching the Gulf, and to destroy all munitions of war, as well as all military forts or hostile towns, and as Col. Streight said: "To kill all the d----d rebels possible." The regiment was mounted infantry and at Eastport the company was equipped with good muskets, 100 rounds of ammunition, ten days' rations, an army pack saddle, but were required to furnish their own horses. They began scouring the country for horses and Mr. Maxwell was out four days before he found a horse. He then came across a fine stallion in a fodder shed, and although the planter protested, Mr. Maxwell obeyed orders and took the horse. He then joined his command of the famous raid and fought in the following battles and skirmishes: Crooked Creek, Wildcat Hollow, Day's Gap, and Rome, Georgia. Four miles from Rome a hard battle was fought and the Federals were defeated. Contrary to the terms of surrender, the soldiers were stripped of all personal property, watches, money and extra clothing, and Mr. Maxwell had $30 taken that he had concealed in his boot leg. His watch and pocket-knife were taken, as was also a ring from his finger. After this he was sent, with other prisoners, on a box-car, to Belle Island, an annex to Libby Prison, where he remained ten days, being in a dungeon one night. After being paroled, he was taken to Petersburg and thence, by boat, to Annapolis, Maryland, Baltimore, Camp Chase, and then reported at Indianapolis. Later our subject was in the battle of Day's Gap and was wounded in the thigh, the ball puncturing the bone and making a severe wound. He had no hospital attention, but remained with the regiment and was assisted, by his comrades, out of Libby Prison. After the battle of Atlanta, he was on guard duty at Larkinsville, Alabama, but was subsequently ordered home. He then followed farming, and on the 18th of December, 1870, he was married to Miss Harriet J. Patton, daughter of George W. Patton (see sketch). For four years Mr. Maxwell remained on the farm with his wife's parents and then settled south of Tassinong, on his present farm of 100 acres, where he has a pleasant rural home, good barns and out-buildings, and is very comfortably fixed. To his marriage were born two children: Zeb and Roy. Mr. Maxwell owns a team of fine horses and has a half-mile regulation track on his farm. He has a number of blooded, horses and his stallion, "Gold Wilkes," by Dispatch, 4480, is a royal bred horse and bids fair to make a very speedy one; also "Longwood," 4968, standard and registered, by Onwood. In his political views, Mr. Maxwell is a Republican. He is an upright, straight-forward citizen, is well liked by all and has many warm friends. The family is highly respected in the county. Mr. and Mrs. Maxwell have had five children, but, as before stated, only Zeb and Roy are living. The ones deceased were, Zellie, born October 6, 1875, and died November 12, 1882; Courtie, born February 16, 1878, and died April 10, 1888, and Ray, born February 2, 1888, the latter a twin with Roy. The son, Zeb, was married February 7, 1894, to Miss Florence Niman.

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: 521-523

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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