History center presents pioneer family awards

BROWNSTOWN — James Marsh settled in Redding Township in Jackson County after playing a big role in the establishment of Bartholomew County.

Daniel Boone Cooley’s relatives traveled with famous American frontiersman Daniel Boone, going from North Carolina to Kentucky to Indiana and winding up in Sparksville. He later was in the Civil War.

Patrick Quinn came to America from Ireland and made his way to an area south of Seymour, married and had a son named William and became a prosperous farmer.

Relatives of these Jackson County pioneers recently were presented awards for keeping their stories alive.

During the Jackson County History Center’s 11th annual Pioneer Dinner on Oct. 20 at Pewter Hall in Brownstown, Marsh’s great-great-great-granddaughter, Judy Stockhoff, received the Founder Family Award, and Thomas Cooley (for Daniel Boone Cooley), M. Sue Quinn Camp and Jane Bradley (for William Quinn) and John A. Quinn, Carl Quinn and Ruby Quinn Kindred (for Patrick Quinn) received the Settler Family Award.

The Jackson County Pioneer Society recognizes any person showing direct descent from someone living in the county in one of four time periods. They are before 1820 (First Families), 1820 to 1850 (Founders), 1851 to 1880 (Settlers) and 1881 to 1910 (Builders).

Stockhoff said her interest in genealogy started about 10 years ago when she wrote a book about Redding Township. While researching at the history center and Jackson County Public Library, she learned a lot about her family.

“I got involved with genealogy and really liked it. It’s addicting, really addicting,” she said, smiling.

After joining the history center and becoming a volunteer there in recent years, she learned a lot more about her family.

In the Pioneer Society application process, she found out her great-grandfather, also named James, was a legislator in the late 1890s, and her grandfather at one time was one of the largest landowners in Redding Township.

“I started finding out all of this stuff, and I was like, ‘Wow! This is really interesting,’ so then I really got into it,” Stockhoff said. “I’ve done family trees for probably a dozen of my friends. I did for all my family. You just find out all this stuff. It just amazed me.”

Cooley said for 60-some years, he has owned the property where Daniel Boone Cooley settled in Sparksville.

“His dad was Steven Cooley, and Steven’s brother, Thomas, was the same as me. He originally bought where our property is right now,” Tom said. “It’s all timber. I lease it out every year for hunting, so it has worked out pretty good.”

Daniel and his brother, John, both fought in the Civil War, and John is buried in a cemetery on the top of Tom’s property.

“All of our property is there on the White River at Sparksville,” Tom said. “My grandfather was a fisherman and worked in the quarry in Sparksville, Lehigh Quarry. I own the quarry property.”

Tom lives in Seymour and has been a longtime member and volunteer with the history center, so he considers it an honor to be inducted into the Pioneer Society.

“I just love the whole group, and they are all nice people to work with,” he said. “It has been really interesting, and I’m still working a little with the genealogy side, too.”

Bradley said her great-grandfather, Patrick Quinn, owned a lot of land south of what’s known today as Meadowbrook Drive in Seymour. She grew up in a home there when it was known as Rural Route 2 and left when she went to college. She now lives in Fishers.

When she and her sister, Sue, who lives in Arizona, were visiting Kindred at her home in Brownstown earlier this year, they saw an article in The Tribune about the Pioneer Society.

“(Sue) is the one that does the ancestry in our family. She’s the one that keeps track of all of that and has the records. She is really into it,” Bradley said.

They agreed it was important to pursue the opportunity to remember their ancestors.

Bradley and Kindred both said it gives them pride that their family is part of Jackson County’s beginnings.

“We appreciate it all. I’m glad to be a Quinn,” Kindred said while accepting the award.

Along with the awards, the recent event included dinner from Pewter Hall, entertainment from Freetown native Larry Wayt and Soldiers’ Joy String Band and a drawing featuring more than 70 prizes.