Autobiography of John Campbell
Submitted by Sharon M. Kouns
Semi Weekly Irontonion
In 1890, John CAMPBELL of Ironton, Ohio made the following
statement in regard to his life:
He lived on his father’s farm, between Ripley and Georgetown,
Brown County, Ohio from birth 1808 to 1880, when in August,
he commenced clerking in the store of his uncle, Wm. HUMPHREYS
in Ripley; continued there till May 1831, then his uncle sent
him with a store to Russellville, a neighboring town, where he
remained until 1832. He then engaged as clerk on the Steamer
“Banner”, running from Cincinnati to Pittsburgh. On his second
trip, he announced in the cabin before some Iron men from the
Hanging Rock region, that he was open for engagement.
Andrew ELLISON and Robt. HAMILTON invited him to clerk for them
a Hanging Rock Region, so he stopped off there in March 1833.
The Hanging Rock Mill began in the building of “The Forge”, in
March 1833. The stockholders in The Forge were the same in the
Lawrence Furnace entitled “J. Riggs & Co.” tower; James Rodgers,
Andrew ELLISON, Robt. HAMILTON, Robt. Dyer BURGESS, Joseph RIGGS,
who subscribed, even amounts. Mr. CAMPBELL, had the privilege of
investing, but declined. He loaned J. Riggs & Co., $1500 in the
building of Lawrence Furnace. From March 1833 to August 1833, he
assisted at the books and helped superintend the men, in building
the Hanging Rock Forge.
Then he went to the site of Lawrence Furnace, called “Cranes Nest”,
and assisted in erecting the same, as Superintendent under Andrew
ELLISON, from August 1833 to January 1, 1835; then visited his home
in Brown County, Ohio for two months, til March 1835; then returning
to Hanging Rock and clerked at the “Landing” until June 1835; then he
went to Mt. Vernon Furnace as Manager, and managed until July 18, 1846.
Mr. CAMPBELL, that year, bought the residence of Andrew ELLISON from
his widow, Jane ELLISON and moved, remaining at Hanging Rock from
1846-Sept. 1850, when he removed to Ironton, where in December 1850,
he occupied his new Ironton residence. The foregoing were the only
occupations Mr. CAMPBELL ever engaged in up to 1850 and he never engaged
in manual labor after leaving his father’s farm.
Mr. ELLISON, uncle of Mr. CAMPBELL’S future wife, had managed at Mt.
Vernon Furnace from late in 1834 to Jun 1835, when he moved to Hanging Rock.
In 1838, he moved to Manchester, Ohio where he resided until his death about 1865.
The Andrew ELLISON homestead at Hanging Rock is what is now known as the Hempstead