Leroy M. Pierce, BiographyPorter County biographical sketches . . . .
Transcribed biography of Leroy M. Pierce
LEROY M. PIERCE. The cardinal essentials of a successful business man's life are industry, honesty of purpose, integrity of character, in combination with practical business acumen. Mr. Pierce, of this brief review, is well known among his business associates in commercial affairs as a man who stands on principle. He is a native son of Porter county, Indiana, where he was born February 17, 1860, the second of eight children and one of the three sons of Andrew B. and Mary E. .(Johnston) Pierce.
Of Scotch origin, the ancestors of Andrew Pierce had come from that land of the heather and the thistle, which has been the mother of so many noble men and women of sturdy character and mind. Otsego county, New York, had been the native place of Andrew Pierce, whose birth occurred in about the year 1829. When six years of age he had come with his parents to Porter county, Indiana, which, in 1835, was, like other parts of that state, a haunt of the aborigines. In the childhood of Andrew Pierce it was not uncommon to be frightened by the occasional appearance of Indians at the cabins, to shiver at the howl of a wolf or the scream of the catamount, and to catch sight now and again of the plentiful fleet-footed deer. For that time was of the period of Indiana's almost prehistoric virginity, so far as civilization was concerned. Andrew Pierce was one of the products of pioneer life, which, despite its many limitations, was noted for its numbers of well-educated, though self-educated, men. Of these the father of our subject was one -- a man who read widely and thought both deeply and independently. A gentleman by instinct and character, he instilled into the minds of his children lofty principles, ever enforced by example, which have been of untold value to them in later years. He was a successful man, accumulating some two hundred acres of good land in Washington township. He was an ardent supporter of the principles of the Democratic party and a man noted for that democracy of spirit which, after all, is the truest aristocracy. His worthy life closed January 8, 1901, and his remains were interred in the Luther cemetery
Mrs. Andrew Pierce, the mother of Leroy Pierce, was a daughter of Judge Johnston, a man well remembered and revered by the people of Porter county. He was a probate judge of that county, devoting a part of his attention to agricultural pursuits. He was another of "nature's noblemen," whose mind was stored with the wisdom of many masters of thought and of literature. A member of the party of "oldline Whigs," he nevertheless voted for the first Republican nominee General John C. Fremont. Judge Johnston lived to the age of eighty-three, spending his last days in Porter county, the scene of his worthy life and labors. His wife, the maternal grandmother of Leroy Pierce, was a native of the Buckeye state. Their daughter, who became Mrs. Andrew Pierce and the mother of our subject, was born May 21, 1840, and when but a little maiden was brought to Porter county by her parents. She was well-educated in the public schools and was possessed of a gentle, affectionate nature. Her kindly deeds and ways will ever remain, clear and eloquent, in the hearts of her children. Of those children, but one is now living in addition to Mr. Leroy M. Pierce. His brother, William F. Pierce, is an agriculturalist of Washington township, where he and his wife are well known and greatly respected. Educated in the common schools of his county and township, he is a typical resident of that community and one who has its best interests at heart.
Leroy M. Pierce, the special subject of the present account, spent his earlier years among rural conditions characteristic of Porter county and its environs during the 'sixties and 'seventies. He received a good practical education in the public schools and was a student of Valparaiso University. After completing his education he spent a short time in the profession of teaching. Soon afterward he was married, in February, 1888, and thereupon established his home on a farm, where for seven years he followed agriculture.
Mrs. Pierce is a native of Porter county and a daughter of Jonah P. and Charlotte Jones. Her father was one of the brave men who during the Civil war offered his services in defense of the Union. He met his death in the ranks, as a soldier defending his country's honor. The mother of Mrs. Pierce is now a resident of Valparaiso, and is well known as Mrs. George Culp. The rural schools of Porter county provided for the education of Cartha Jones Pierce. She is a member of the Christian church and of the Ladies' Social Club of Valparaiso.
Mr. and Mrs. Pierce are the parents of one daughter, Lou Cartha, who is now a student of the Valparaiso high school and a member of the class of 1914. The family located in this city in about 1890, occupying a handsome modern residence with all the comforts of life.
A fine estate of two hundred acres in Washington township is a part of the property of Mr. and Mrs. Pierce, but Mr. Pierce has also many business interests of importance. These include his connection with the Valparaiso National Bank, in which he is a director, and his major activities in the insurance business. He is a representative of the best insurance companies in the United States and in that work is notably successful.
The political attitude of Leroy M. Pierce is that assumed by many of the most judicious of modern thinkers and voters -- that of independence of party lines. Socially he is connected with the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, Lodge No. 500, at Valparaiso, Indiana. He is, like his wife, a member of the Christian church and contributes liberally in all ways to all measures which tend to elevate the status of his city -- whether moral, spiritual, social or intellectual.
The cordiality and genial hospitality of Mr. and Mrs. Pierce fitly grace their attractive home at No. 505 East Main street. It is with pleasure that the reviewer presents the above condensed account of their biographical history and of the status of such a sterling business citizen as is Leroy M. Pierce.
Source: Lewis Publishing Company. 1912. History of Porter County, Indiana: A Narrative Account of its Historical Progress, its People and its Principal Interests. Chicago, Illinois: Lewis Publishing Company. 881 p.
Page(s) in Source: 857-858
This biography has been transcribed exactly as it was originally published in the source. Please note that we do not provide photocopies or digital scans of biographies appearing on this website.
Biography transcribed by Steven R. Shook