Jesse A. Nelson
This enterprising farmer and stock raiser is a native of Indiana, but traces his ancestry on the paternal side to Denmark, in which country his grandfather, Christian Nelson, was born and reared. Christian Nelson spent the first eighteen years of his life in the city of Copenhagen, and then shipped as a sailor, which vocation he followed until attaining his majority, when he quit the sea and came to the United States. Locating in Rush county, Indiana, shortly after his arrival he engaged in agricultural pursuits and in due time accumulated a sufficiency of worldly wealth to place him in independent circumstances, among his possessions being a finely improved farm of two hundred forty acres in that highly favored part of the state.
On this farm was born in 1842, W. H. Nelson, the father of the subject of this sketch, now a retired farmer living in the town of Arlington, and one of the leading citizens of the place. In his young manhood W. H. Nelson married Elizabeth Adams, of Rush county, who bore him seven children, six of whom are living, the oldest being a daughter by the name of Adella, whose birth occurred September 1, 1863, and who on August 13, 1883, became the wife of W.H. Eaton, of Gwynneville, Indiana. Viola, the second of the family, was born May 1, 1865, married James Draper on October 13, 1883, and lives on a farm in Rush county; Maggie, born March 5, 1866, was married September 15, 1889 to Perry Collins, and died July, 1901; Jesse A., of this review, the fourth in order of birth, first saw the light of day December 27, 1867; John A., of Rush county, was born November 6, 1869; Mertie, who became the wife of Henry Conoway, January 1893, was born on the 22nd day of May, 1871. Fannie, born June 10, 1874, was married in 1889, to Noah Moore and resides on the family homestead, in the county of Rush.
Jesse A. Nelson was reared to agricultural pursuits on his father's farm and received a good education in the district schools which he attended at intervals until his twentieth year. Two years later, March 27, 1890, he united in with Katie Price, of Rush county, and immediately thereafter rented the paternal homestead, which he cultivated during the ensuing seventeen years with success and profit, accumulating sufficient means in that time to purchase a farm of his own to which he removed on the 5th day of March, 1908. Mr. Nelson's place, which contains one hundred sixty acres of fine land in the southeast quarter of section 6, Hanover Township, is admirably situated in one of the best agricultural districts of Shelby county, and well adapted to farming and stock raising. He cultivates his ground according to the latest methods, is a careful student of agricultural science, and by a judicious rotation of crops not only insures bountiful yields from his fields but retains in all of its fertility the original productiveness of the soil. While eminently successful as a farm he has made the greater part of his money as a stock raiser -- his cattle, horses and hogs being of improved breeds and among the finest in the county.
Mr. Nelson is a man of intelligence and sound judgment, enterprising in all the term implies and uses his influence to raise the standard of agriculture in his community and advance the material interests of his neighbors and fellow men. He keeps in touch with the times on all matters of public import, manifests a lively regard in local and state politics and votes the Democratic ticket, though not a seeker after office on public preferment.
His financial success has been continuous and from his extensive farming and stock interests, which are among the largest in Hanover township, he has ammassed a handsome fortune and is today one of the solid men of his community, as well as one of the county's most progressive men of affairs.
Mrs. Nelson was born February 13, 1893, in Rush county, Indiana; she has presented her husband with three children, namely: Bessie, born June 23, 1891; Brainard, May 26, 1893, and Warren, whose birth occurred on the 28th of October, 1897, all living and well situated as far as the future is concerned. Mr. and Mrs. Nelson are respected member of the Gwynneville Christian Church, and active and infulential in carrying forward the good work of the same, he being one of the trustees of the society and a liberal contributor to its materaial support.
History of Shelby County, Indiana, by Edward H. Chadwick, B.A., assisted by well known local talent, 1909, pages 641-643.
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