Maxwell, Norman J. - Col.

Submitted by mercercounty on Wed, 08/18/2010 - 04:43

COL. NORMAN J. MAXWELL, who has resided in Mercer county for more than half a century, going there in 1852, was born on a farm in Plain Grove township, Lawrence county, Pennsylvania, March 13, 1834. His parents were William and Nancy (Waddell) Maxwell, both natives of Lawrence county, Pennsylvania, where their respective parents were pioneers. The grandfather, James Maxwell, had entered some land, he being a native of eastern Pennsylvania, and his father was born in Scotland. On the maternal side, Mr. Maxwell comes of Irish ancestry. The father, William Maxwell, was a farmer by occupation and died in 1851, aged about fifty years. He reared a family of four sons and four daughters. The mother outlived her husband about fifteen years.

Colonel Maxwell obtained a good common school education in the country schools, but on account of his father’s death had to begin life’s battle for himself at an early age. When about eighteen years of age he went to Mercer county to learn the carriage-making trade, with a cousin, who died within a year, thus changing young Maxwell’s plans for life. He then turned to agricultural implement-making, working in a factory at this industry about five years, after which he went to North Liberty, Pennsylvania. There he remained at the same kind of work, until the Civil war broke out, and in that conflict proved himself a brave and gallant soldier, achieving high honors. He enlisted August 28, 1861, and was mustered into the army as a private soldier, in Company E, One Hundredth Pennsylvania Volunteer Infantry, known as the “round head regiment.” A few days after he was mustered in, he was promoted to second sergeant, and in October, 1861, was made second lieutenant. Six months later he was promoted to first lieutenant and March 1, 1863, was made captain of his company. April 24, 1863, he was promoted to major, and December 11, 1864, to be colonel; April 18, 1865, he was breveted brigadier-general. He was made a colonel April 18, 1865, for gallantry at Fort Steadman, March 25, 1865. He was mustered out of service with his regiment, July 24, 1865, having served four years. He very naturally found a place among the members of the Grand Army of the Republic, when that organization was perfected. He is also a member of the Loyal Legion, serving some eight years as adjutant and four years as commander of the Soldiers’ Home at Erie, Pennsylvania. His military career was all in one regiment and all promotions made by reason of true merit.

In 1866 he went to Grove City, where he located and has since resided and has been engaged in mercantile pursuits, continuing the same about twenty years. He is active in Masonry, and is now a Master Mason. In his church relations the Colonel is a member of the Presbyterian church. He was married in 1858 to Elizabeth A. Campbell, who died October 2, 1906. One daughter, Flora E., wife of Charles Welch, of Grove City, has been born to the Colonel and wife.

Twentieth Century History of Mercer County, 1909, Vol. I, pages 513-514

Col. Norman Maxwell website

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