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James S. Minor


Cedar Hill Cemetery

James S. Minor was born in Brownsville, Licking County, OH on Oct. 18, 1833, the son of Jacob and Mary (Ferguson) Miner. He was a "well known painter" of Newark, Licking County. 

On April 4, 1862, at the age of 29, James married 24-year-old Angeline C. Hamilton (1838-1914). She was the daughter of Joseph Hamilton of Licking County.

Their five children were Estella Ferguson, Carrie Wilson Wilkinson, Joseph R. Minor, Herbert J. Miner and Oren Bernard Minor.

The 1866 Atlas of Licking County, published at the close of the Civil War, shows James living on Fifth Street in Brownsville, across the street from his parents. Their home was located at the northwest corner of the town's boundary, one block from Main Street, otherwise known as the National Road, U.S. Route 40 and the National Turnpike. James kept a shop of some sort attached to the house. (The map maker mysteriously labeled it "C. Sh.") Behind the residence flowed Valley Run stream.

In 1869, James and Angeline purchased Lot 34 in the town of Brownsville. They then sold a tract of land to his father in Bowling Green Township. Later, they moved to Newark, where they resided at 10 Western Avenue.

The Newark Daily Advocate said James "was an honorable, industrious man" and a "veteran painter."

When the federal census of 1880 was enumerated, James and Angeline and their family resided on Tenth Street in Newark. The census-taker recorded that there the houses were not numbered. James' occupation was listed as "house painter." That year, in addition to their four eldest children, two-year-old M. (or "W.") Charley Suter lived under their roof, relationship unknown.


Atlas map of Brownsville, 1866. The residences of James and his parents are marked with red dots, along Fifth Street at the northwest corner of town. Just a block to the south was Main Street, otherwise known as the National Road, or U.S. Route 40.


Heartache shook the family on June 26, 1881 when their 10-year-old son Herbert died, of causes unknown. He is buried in the family plot at Cedar Hill Cemetery in Brownsville.

Licking County contains many beautiful scenes and natural vistas. No doubt the Minors were familiar with some of the more well-known sites near Newark, such as Black Hand Rock.

In about 1900, James fell and injured himself, likely in a work-related accident. He never fully recovered, though he lived for another five years.


Picturesque Black Hand Rock in Licking County



Newark Daily Advocate, 1905

Sadly, in February 1905, James came down with a severe case of pneumonia. He died two weeks later, on Valentine's Day. His obituary in the Newark Daily Advocate called him a "Well Known Painter." He was laid to rest at Cedar Hill Cemetery, with the funeral officiated by Rev. L.C. Sparks. "Many friends will mourn his death," the newspaper added. 

The spring after James' passing, Angeline is known to have lived in Newark and traveled back to Brownsville with her son Joseph and Oren to visit her sister, Mrs. J.M. Kemner. This tidbit of gossip was published in the Newark Advocate on June 1, 1905. 

Angeline outlived her husband by nine years and made her home at 10 Western Avenue in Newark.

Tragedy struck on April 8, 1914 when Angeline fell while visiting at the home of her son Joseph.  She fell and broke the vertebrae in her neck, causing "instant" death.  Said the Newark American-Tribune:


Obituary, 1914

...About five months ago Mrs. Minor was afflicted with paralysis and since that time has not been able to move about the house without assistance.  This morning when she arose from bed about 7:30 o'clock she attempted to walk without aid and it was in this way she met her death....  She was a woman widely known for her beautiful character and her passing will be sadly regretted by many. She was a member of the First M.E. church and during her active life [was] one of the most regular attendants.

Evangeline was buried beside her husband in Brownsville's Cedar Hill Cemetery.

The Minors' grandson Frederick William Minor (1908-1999) was a real estate broker who owned his own firm, the Fred W. Minor agency of North Canton, Stark County, OH. He worked on the genealogy of this line in the 1970s and '80s, and many of his findings are reflected in this biography.


Copyright 2000-2003, 2013, 2019 Mark A. Miner