Shelby County, Indiana
St. Paul, Ind., Oct. 18, 1910-- Editor Republican--- Being the oldest native born in Shelby county, I take the liberty to address you as such and through your paper will speak of some
of the early things. First, my father was one of the first to come to this county. He moved
here in an ox cart with mother and a young child in the cart with a cow tied behind, and after
they left Whitewater there was no road and he had to cut the spice brush out of the way in
many places. He settled in the Green woods in Shelby county before Shelbyville was thought
of and some time before it was laid out by John Walker. John Hendricks had settled on the east end of town near where the stillhouse once was, and started a tan yard. When my father
came here he had a few hundred dollars and could begin to improve. He was a brick mason
and made the first brick and built the first brick chimney and the first brick house in the county.
He made the first shingle roof and mother had the first cook stove and father bought the first
carriage in the county and opened the first hotel. Father and mother for some time rode to
church in an ox cart and when he bought his carriage the people would stare at them, and
when mother got her cook stove women would come for miles to see her cook on it. Father's
barn was the first building in the county with a shingle roof and it is standing yet, but not with
the first roof. This will do as a start and I will give you more later.
J. R. French
The Shelbyville Republican
Wednesday, October 19, 1910
Page 4, column 1
SHELBY COUNTY HISTORY
Yours as the oldest native born in Shelby county. J.
R. FRENCH Submitted by Barb Huff.