My 2nd great grandaunt Rachel FALLS (abt. 1823 Virginia-1884 Indiana), daughter of my 3rd great-grandparents John FALLS, Jr. (1793-1874), & Elizabeth [JENKINS?] (1782-1871), married John W. ESTEP (1815-1891) on Feb. 6, 1840, in Indiana. They had five children together, Isaac Newton (1841–1932); Caroline M. (Carrie) (1844–1880); John (1846–1860); James H. (1847–1865); and William L. (1853–1879).
After Rachel’s death, John married Nancy Jane (Jennie) HURDLE (1842 Indiana–1903 Indiana), daughter of Robert HURDLE (1815-1864) & Ester WEAVER (1818-1904).
The following biographical sketch of John is from the 1885 “History of Hendricks County, Indiana, together with sketches of its cities, villages and towns, educational, religious, civil, military, and political history, portraits of prominent persons, and biographies of representative citizens:”
“John W. Estep, a retired merchant and farmer of Danville, was born near Richmond, Wayne Co., Ind., Oct. 17, 1815. His parents were John and Jemimah (Wright) Estep, his father a native of Maryland, and his mother of Pennsylvania. They came to Indiana in 1812, and lived in Wayne Connty until their death. Our subject’s educational advantages were very limited. He helped his mother prepare flax for weaving, and assisted his father on a farm till his eighteenth year, after which he was allowed to keep whatever he earned. At the age of twenty he began teaching in the public schools of Washington Township, Wayne County, which be followed a part of three years. By the time he had reached his twenty-first year he had accumulated enough money to purchase 200 acres of Government land in Whitely County, Ind. He was married Feb. 6, 1840, to Rachel Falls, of Wayne County, a native of Virginia, by whom he had five children, all of whom are deceased except one son, Isaac Newton, a farmer of Center Township, near Danville.
“In 1853 Mr. Estep sold his farms in Wayne and Whitely counties, for which he received $1,000, and purchased a farm of 180 acres in Floyd Township, Putnam Co., Ind., for $3,800, where he engaged in buying and selling hogs till 1859, when selling part of his property, he having accumulated about 600 acres of land, he came to Hendricks County. Here he settled on a farm adjoining Danville, having purchased a half section of land in that vicinity. In 1861 he was one of the prime movers in founding the Danville Academy, and was the first man to subscribe toward building it. The Academy is now known as the Central Normal College of Danville. He lived on his farm, carrying on farming and dealing in everything in which there was any money, until 1877, when ho retired from business and is now living in one of the most pleasant residences in Danville. He has accumulated about $90,000, much of which he has given to his children and to charitable, church and educational purposes. His wife died June 4, 1884, being a member of the Society of Friends. He is a member of the. Methodist Episcopal church, having connected himself therewith in June, 1832. He was also of Methodist parentage. His present wife, nee N. J. Hurdle, was also of Methodist parentage, and is a member of the same church.”
John, Rachel, and John’s 2nd wife, Jennie, are all buried at Danville East Cemetery, Danville, Hendricks County, Indiana, USA.
1. “History of Hendricks County, Indiana, together with sketches of its cities, villages and towns, educational, religious, civil, military, and political history, portraits of prominent persons, and biographies of representative citizens,” Volume 2, Inter-state Publishing Company (Chicago, Ill.). Published 1885. — Archive.org, numerous formats, at https://archive.org/details/historyofhendric02inte , accessed June 12, 2016.
2. FindAGrave.com, “John W. Estep,” at http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=8375316 , accessed June 12, 2016. Photo of John W. & Rachel (FALLS) ESTEP grave marker; and, photo of Danville East Cemetery, contributed to FindAGrave by J. Sullivan. Photo of smaller Jennie (HURDLE) ESTEP stone, contributed to FindAGrave by Terry Kinman. Photo of larger [James H. ESTEP &] Jennie (HURDLE) ESTEP stone, contributed to FindAGrave by Cheryl Swanson.