owner and proprietor of a woolen mill in Manchester, Josiah S. Jones is
conducting one of the oldest industrial enterprises of the city, for this mill
had its inception in 1864 and from that time to the present, covering a half
century, it has been in the possession of the Jones family. Mr. Jones was born
at Newton Falls, Ohio, December 16, 1854. His parents, David W. and Margaret
(Davis) Jones, were both natives of Wales, and emigrating to America in 1842,
first located in Pennsylvania, but later made their way to the Buckeye state. In
1854, however, the father continued his journey .westward and coming to Delaware
county, entered a homestead in Delaware township. Three years later he brought
his family to his new home and on this farm property they lived in true pioneer
style for many years.
In 1864 he built
a woolen mill in Manchester and from that time until his death in 1898 he was
actively identified therewith, but during the last few years of his life he was
associated in this enterprise with his son, Josiah S. The mother survived for a
number of years and departed this life in 1911, when she had reached the very
advanced age of ninety-one years. Their union was blessed with seven children:
William B., deceased; Eliza A., the widow of James Russell, and a resident of
Manchester; Josiah S., of this review; and Mary Ann, J. Walter, John and Mary
Alice, all of whom have departed this life.
Josiah S. Jones received his education in the common
schools of the neighborhood and remained under the parental roof until he had
attained his majority. He was then variously employed for some years and in 1888
formed a partnership with his father in the conduct of the woolen mill, with
which enterprise he has been identified since. Upon the death of the father, Mr.
Jones purchased the interest of the other heirs in the mill and has since been
sole owner and proprietor, conducting the same with increasing success. Mr.
Jones is likewise the owner of a farm of two hundred and sixteen acres, lying on
section 20, Delaware township. Here he carries on general farming, but makes a
specialty of the dairy and stock business, raising Holstein cattle. It will thus
be seen that his interests are varied but his ability is such along business
lines that he is meeting with success in each department of his work.
It was in the year 1876 that Mr. Jones was united
in marriage to Miss Harriet A. Sly, who was born in Henrietta, Lorain county,
Ohio, a daughter of John D. and Martha (Bartlett) Sly, both of whom are
deceased. To Mr. and Mrs. Jones have been born seven children, three daughters
and four sons: Irene, the wife of John W. Bonnell, of Paris, France; John S.,
who is in the employ of the government as a live-stock inspector, located in New
Mexico; Paul B., who is employed as a civil engineer by the Chicago, Milwaukee &
St. Paul Railroad Company, and is now located in the west; Lloyd G., who is
employed as editor by the Hearst newspaper interests in San Francisco,
California; Alice E., who is supervisor of music in the public schools at
Muncie, Indiana; Ada M., who graduated from the state college at Ames, Iowa, and
later was a teacher of domestic science for several years but is now the wife of
Paul E. Miller, a professor in the State College at Morris, Minnesota; and
Carroll C., who is a high-school student.
Mr. Jones politically is a supporter of the
republican party and has served as a member of the board of education for a
number of years, while for twelve years he was a trustee of the Agricultural
College at Ames, Iowa. Thus it will be seen that he is interested in educational
matters, and he has accorded to his children good advantages in this direction.
He is a Knight of Pythias and a Modern Woodman, while his wife is a member of
the Congregational church. Through his industry and perseverance he has become
recognized as one of the substantial men of the county and has gained a position
of financial independence.