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 Little Home Histories, Part 88 -- Thomas Webster, Sr., 1782-1858.

by Hall, Edward.

See previous entry: Little Home Histories, Part 87 -- Samuel Walton.

Thomas Webster Sr. the oldest son of John and Hannah (Plummer) Webster was born at little Britain, Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, on the 6th of the Third Month 1782. He came to Ohio with his father's family in the later part of year 1806. He remained here for about two years, working with other members of the family. During a part of this time, he made some improvement upon the land designed for his future home -- this being the southeast quarter of section Number 26 in what is now Millwood Township, Guernsey Co, -- the farm now owned by Norval E. Day.

He cleared a few acres on the site of the present residence and on the hill to the north of it. He planted a small orchard of apple trees on the upper part of this ground. These were probably small seedling trees, either procured from the older settlement in the vicinity of Barnesville or trees raised from these seed. The family brought apple seed and seeds of other fruit at the time of their move here from Pennsylvania.

Thomas, after remaining here for about two years, returned with his brother William to Lancaster county, Pennsylvania, and resumed their labors at the carpenter trade. After remaining there about two years, they both returned to Ohio and ever after resided in this vicinity. When Thomas Webster returned to Ohio, he found his fruit trees so nearly destroyed by rabbits and the ground so overrun with bushes, he abandoned the orchard and started a new one elsewhere.

During Thomas Webster's first residence here -- either just before or after his return from Pennsylvania -- he had an encounter with a bear. My father (Cyrus Hall) left upon record the facts in the case, which I shall reproduce here. Thomas Webster was out one morning prospecting over his intended future home; he carried his axe in hand. The ground was slightly covered with snow.

A large bear came along being pursued by a dog, which manifested the most unceasing vigilance and daring courage. This was reinforced more as Thomas fell in with the line of pursuit, giving constant encouragement to the dog from the shrill sound of his voice, and the threatening attitude of his axe as he gave chase. Thus encouraged, the dog would lay hold on the bear, and hold on checking his speed, by bracing back. The bear was compelled in his onward march to drag the dog by his superior force and massive strength, rather than risk an encounter with the approaching woodsmans axe. Whenever an opportunity offered, the bear would wheel around and smite the dog with his fore paw. The dog, to evade the blow, would instantly loosen his hold and retreat. Thus this noble specimen of the canine race proved true and equal to the present emergency, resuming his hold on the bear on every opportunity.

Thus the chase was continued until they were near the cabin of Michael King. He owned the land east of Thomas Webster's and adjoining Quaker City on the west. As they came within calling distance, Thomas requested Michael to shoot the bear. With that, Michael's two dogs ran up to the bear holding him at bay for the time being. At this juncture, Michael attempted to shoot the bear, but by some means he unfortunately missed the bear and killed one of his own dogs. Thomas got the gun and loaded it with the only remaining bullet Michael had and shot the bear in the flank, without much effect, Thomas happened to have two rifle balls of smaller size in his pocket. He reloaded the gun and shot the bear in the head without killing him. Such was the tenacity of the bear, when they finally approached him with an axe, the bear reared up boxing off the dogs. But the ax finally brought an end to this combat.

Source: Written by: Edward Hall, Quaker City, Ohio.

Ancestry of Frederick Stuckey Webster, b. 2-28-1928

Gr. Gr. Grandfather,
Thomas Webster, Sr.
b. 3-6-1782
d. 4-21-1858
m. Anne Gore,
m 12-13-1813

Gr. Grandfather,
Thomas Webster, Jr.
b. 10-26-1832
d. 12-1-1913
m. Lydia Richardson
m. 4-21-1860

Willis V. Webster
b. 3-1-1861
m. Emma Stanton
m. 8-23-1888

Thomas Webster
b. 6-25-1897
m. Helen Louise Stuckey
m. 6-17-1922

See next entry: Little Home Histories, Part 89 -- John Webster, Jr., 1791-.

For the table of contents and first entry in this series, please see: Little Home Histories, Part 01 -- Table of Contents and Introduction.

This entry is adapted from Little Home Histories in Our Early Homes, Belmont County, Ohio, which was published in 1942. Its publication was coordinated by Robert D. and Beulah Patten McDonald. This entry has been reedited for inclusion in the Pierian Press Fulltext eBooks database, and is included on the Stratton House Inn Website by special permission. This entry is licensed for use ONLY on this Website. It may be used for educational purposes and personal pleasure under fair-use provisions via this Website. Please note that the Stratton House Inn iteration of this entry does NOT include the subject headings assigned each chapter for use in the Fulltext eBooks database.

DATABASE: Fulltext eBooks: Copyright (c) 2002 The Pierian Press, Inc. All Rights Reserved

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