It All Starts Here

It all starts here, with a man of determination and cunning, ambition and drive. 

John Pierson Minor was born in 1791 in Middlesex, New Jersey, the eldest child of Abia and Margaret Pierson (Pearson) Minor.  The couple moved their family to the wilds of Greene County, Pennsylvania in 1796, and there John Pierson grew up and prospered.  

A veteran of the War of 1812 he began his family in 1816 with Hannah McClelland.  They had two boys, Abia and Robert, before she died.  John P. then married Isabella McClelland and together they had Hannah, Mary Ann, Margaret, Rebecca, Samuel Pierson, Francis Marion, Isabelle, Sarah Ellen, and Frances Caroline.  John P. Minor was a cattle drover, a farmer, a dry goods store entrepenuer, and in his later years a cattle dealer.  Recognizing the land as the asset of his century, John P. purchased hundreds of acres around his home farm in Greene County, Pennsylvania, in addition to hundreds of acres in Iowa, Missouri and Illinois.  Much of this land was passed on to his offspring; the rest was sold as seemed prudent.  John P. was a Democrat throughout the Civil War, supporting the reunion of the country but opposing the abolition of slavery.  He lived out his later years in the home of his middle son, Francis Marion and Mary Jane Gwynn Minor with their children, John Pierson, Olfred, Sarah Priscilla and baby Robert (b. 1869). He died at home in 1874.  

This portrait of my great-great-great-grandfather was taken near the end of his life by Greene County photographer, Thomas W. Rogers of Public Square, Carmichaels, Pennsylvania.  

3 thoughts on “It All Starts Here

    • Now that I can stare into those eyes, I want to reread the ledger books that have survived, particularly the ones detailing his cattle droving partnerships in the 1830s. Fascinating man.

  1. Pingback: The Minor Family Album: Mr. Chin Whiskers | Shoots, Roots, and Leaves

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