Marion W. McFerran
The family of this name, though originally of Ireland,
came to America at an early day and was long settled in Kentucky.
Thomas McFerran, the founder, might have stood for the hero of the once popular song, "He is a Fine Old Irish Gentleman. One of the Olden Kind." He imigrated in youth, eventually reached the South, as an adventurous Irish lad, married in Kentucky, and in 1835 came to Shelby County. He located on a tract of timber land in Hendricks township, which had been entered by his father-in-law, and like many another pioneer, bravely confronted the task of subduing a part of the great western wilderness. Lucinda Hendricks, the girl he had selected to help him make this hard fight, was born and reared in Kentucky and had the true grit, incidental to the place of her nativity. Her father was Peter Hendricks, an early pioneer of Franklin county, where he lived out his allotted time and passed away in the fullness of years. Thomas McFerran, before
his death, added considerably to the original eighty acres given him by his father-in-law and his holdings eventually
amounted to four hundred acres of the rich soil of Hendricks township. His wife died October 21, 1865, at the early age of less than thirty-four years, after becoming the mother of four children:
Marion W., Lewis W., killed in the Civil War; Levi, a resident of Olympia, Washington; and Caroline, wife of a Mr. Walker, who having died before a year elapsed, she married William Wagoner and now resides in Johnson county. Thomas McFerran's second wife was Eliza Gully, of Kentucky, by whom he had three children: Jasper, deceased; Mary, wife of James Cutsinger, and Jessie, wife of John V. Pentzer. The mother died December 3, 1907, and is buried in Forest Hill cemetery, at Shelbyville. Thomas McFerran died January 29, 1883, at the age of nearly seventy-five and was laid by the body of his first wife in the Mount Gilead Baptist church, of which he was a deacon. In 1876 he joined the Methodist Protestant church at Marietta and was much interested in religious affairs.
Marion W. McFerran, oldest of his father's children, was born in Kentucky, December 19, 1831, and was consequently but four years of age when his parents came to Shelby county. He assisted his father in the hard work of making a home and remained with him until the completion of his twenty-fourth year, when he began to form plans of his own. September 15, 1855, he married Mary Gully, who was born in Kentucky, December 14,1832, and who was a sister of his father's second wife and a daughter of Willis and Elizabeth (Land) Gully. Willis Gully was a native of Wales, who was brought to Kentucky by his parents in childhood. After his marriage he came to Shelby county and entered land, but in 1834 removed to Decatur county, where he lived until 1865. He then went to Hendricks county, returned in 1869 to Shelby county for eight years, again migrated to Decatur county, and remained there until death put an end to his wanderings. He was the father of twelve children: Fannie, William, Lucretia, Eliza, Nancy, of Decatur county; Thomas of Indianapolis; Mildred, deceased; Lucinda, of Indianapolis; Mary, Amanda, of Boone county; John, of Shelbyville, and James, deceased. After his marriage Marion McFerran lived for ten years on his own farm, after which he returned to the old homestead and remained there until his life ended. His children are as follows: Jasper N., deceased, married Olive Smith, who now resides in Oklahoma; Lillie, wife of Leander Creek, of Hendricks township, has four children: Otto, who married May Slagle; Alta, wife of Jacob Conway, of Marietta; Esta, of Shelby county; Myrtle, wife of James Snapp; J. D. McFerran, third child of Marion, married Phoebe Pile, resides in Lafayette, Indiana, and has two children, Maude and Joe; Laura McFerran, fourth child of Marion, married John W. Pile,resides at Marietta and has seven children: Mary, wife of Charles Sheffler; Erva, married Burnice Glover; Harry married Katie Henderson; Carl,deceased; Richard, Estie and Lola. Elizabeth A. McFerran, youngest child of Marion, married Levant Strahl,of Brown county, and has four children: Elva Lorena, Harry Elroy, Adah Marie and Warren Edward. Mr. Strahl died May 26, 1905, in the flower of his young manhood, and was sincerely lamented, as everybody called him a nice young man. He was universally respected and gave promise of much usefulness, had his life been spared. He was only thirty-seven years old when called away and a large concourse of mourners appeared at his grave, when he was laid away in the Miller cemetery. Marion McFerran was a member of the Baptist church, in which he held the position of clerk. No citizen of Hendricks township was held in higher esteem, and it is doubtful if he had an enemy in the world. Since his death his wife has lived with her daughter, Mrs. Strahl, who owns one hundred and eighty acres of fine farming land, which she manages herself. Mr. McFerran died May 10, 1904, and is buried in the Miller cemetery. His wife is a member of the Baptist church, a friend of all moral causes and a fine type of the best class of farmers' wives, who did yeoman service in rescuing the county from its rough state, covered with brush and swamps, and placing it in the first rank, as a model of agricultural development and advancement.
Chadwick's History of Shelby County, Indiana by Edward H. Chadwick, B.A., assisted by well known local talent, B.F. Bowen & Co, Publishers: Indianapolis, IN, 1909, pages 550-552.
Copied by Phyllis Miller Fleming