Ohio History Journal

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Colonel James Kilbourne, one of the founders of

Bucyrus, was a prominent pioneer of Ohio. He was

born at New Britain, Connecticut, October 19, 1770. He

was descended from an ancient Scottish family, but his

ancestors for many years had lived in England before

emigrating to America. His father, who was a farmer,

encouraged his son to make his home with Mr. Griswold,

the father of Bishop Griswold, of the Protestant Epis-

copal Church, in order that he might study Greek, Latin

and other of the higher branches of learning. He must

have devoted some attention to applied mathematics and

theology, as he afterwards became an expert surveyor

and was ordained to the ministry. While pursuing his

studies, he spent his evenings in the establishment of a

clothier and thus acquired a practical business education

that had much to do with enterprises undertaken by him

in subsequent years.

At the age of nineteen years, he married Miss Lucy

Fitch, daughter of John Fitch, the builder of the first

steam boat - a model of the engine of which, through

the interest of Colonel Kilbourne's descendants, is now

in the possession of the Ohio State Archaeological and

Historical Society. After the death of his first wife he

married Cynthia, the sister of Dr. Lincoln Goodall.

At the age of thirty his attention was attracted to

the opportunities afforded by emigration to what was

then the far West. He became active in the organiza-