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'HE Grant name is associated with the Scottish clans,
though it is probably of Norman origin. The clan was powerful in the early days of the Scotch monarchy. John Grant commanded the right wing of the Scotch army at Halidown Hill, in 1333. During the Jacobite troubles the Grants held large possessions in the Strathspey country, and were Protestants and Whigs. Lieutenant-General Francis Grant was buried in Hampshire, England, Dec. 2d, 1781, and his monument bears a burning crest with the motto “Steadfast.” In “Fairbain's Crests of the Families of Great Britain and Ireland” are twenty-one different crests of the Grant family. One of them represents a burning hill, with four peaks each surmounted by a flame with the motto “ Stand Sure! Stand Fast! Craig Ellachie !” Another Grant had as a crest an oak sprouting and sun shining, with the motto “ Wise and Harmless.” Others still bore as mottoes “Stabit,” “ Stand Sure !” “I'll Stand Sure," "Immobile,” “Stand Fast Craig Ellachie." These mottoes of the sturdy Grant clansmen are strikingly descriptive of the dominant traits in the character of their illustrious descendant, the subject of this volume.
Matthew Grant came to America in 1630, and settled first in Massachusetts, then at Windsor, Connecticut. In the fifth generation from Matthew was Capt. Noah Grant, the General's Great-grandfather, who fought in the French and Indian wars.
His son, Noah Grant, Jr., was a lieutenant of militia in the battle of Lexington, and subsequently fought throughout the Revolutionary War. He removed to Westmoreland county, Pa., where his son, Jesse Root Grant, was born, January 23d,
Jesse R. Grant, whose father moved to the then North west in April, 1799, lost his mother when he was eleven
years old. At the age of sixteen he was apprenticed as a tanner to a half brother in Maysville, Ky. After serving his time he began the tanning business for himself in Ravenna, Portage county, O. Though deprived of early schooling, he was
a man of large information. Blessed with a strong constitution, robust body, shrewd and comprehensive judgment, and being honest, frugal, industrious and persevering, he became prosperous and gradually extended his business to various cities and towns in the West. He was a man of strict integrity, a ready speaker and pleasing writer.
At the age of sixty he gave up his business, having ac
quired a fortune, to his sons Orville and Simpson. He subsequently divided his property equally among his children, reserving enough to support himself and wife. His son Ulysses declined to receive any part of his father's fortune,
modestly asserting that he had done nothing toward its accumulation.
Jesse R. Grant was married at Point Pleasant, Ohio, in June, 1821, to Hannah Simpson, daughter of John Simpson, a farmer of Montgomery county, Pa. She was also of Scotch extraction, and was noted for her great steadiness, firmness and strength of character. She was a consistent member of the Methodist Church from girlhood, a faithful and devoted wife, a careful and painstaking mother, and at all times and in all troubles the chief stay and comfort of her family.
It is not strange that the offspring of such parents should be sturdy, virtuous, honest and truthful, and that with opportunity they should develop all the qualities which fit men for the highest places of trust in politics, war or business.
Hiram Ulysses Grant was born on April 27th, 1822, at Point Pleasant, in Clermont county, O. His father relates that soon after his birth a family discussion arose about naming him. His mother proposed Albert, after Albert Gallatin. An aunt proposed Theodore. The grandfather suggested Hiram. The step-grandmother, a student of history, proposed Ulysses. The result was he was christened Hiram Ulysses, and passed his childhood under this name.
The year after, 1823, his father moved to Georgetown, within forty miles of Cincinnati. Here he passed his boyhood, and it was that of one growing up in a comparatively new country. At an early age he began to manifest an independent, self-reliant and venturesome disposition. He was fond of riding and breaking horses, driving teams,
and helping at whatever work he was able to do. At six he was a fearless horseman, and at twelve had broken many colts, some of which he used to ride at full speed, standing on their backs like a circus man. His quiet, gentle disposition, yet remarkable firmness, gave him wonderful control of horses.
He was in demand among his neighbors as a trainer of