WESLEY SMITH MANN
††††††††††† A record as a gallant soldier, an efficient and faithful public official and an upright and progressive citizen, fully meets the requirements of the best order of Americanism.† Such a record has been made by Wesley Smith Mann, of Modesto, Stanislaus County, California, who was born on his fatherís farm in Hendricks County, Indiana, October 28, 1845, a son of Frederick and Elizabeth (Moore) Mann.† The Mannís are an old family in Scotland, when came Mr. Mannís grandfather in the paternal line, who settled in North Carolina, where was born Frederick Mann, who early in life emigrated to Marion County, Indiana, where he died at the age of eight-three years.† His wife, also of Scotch ancestry, departed this life in the sixty-fourth year of her age.† They were members of the Methodist Episcopal Church, and were of the highest character and respectability.† Of their ten children six are living, four in Indiana, one in Texas, and one in California.
††††††††††† Wesley Smith Mann was brought up on his fatherís farm in Indiana and secured the basis of his education in the public schools near his home.† He was only sixteen years old when President Lincoln issued his first call for volunteers to put down the slaveholdersí rebellion.† The following year the great magnitude of the strife and the imperative need for more soldiers impelled him, a boy of seventeen though he was, to bear arms in defense of his countryís honor, and he enlisted in Company A, Fifty-third Regiment, Indiana Volunteer Infantry, February 6, 1862, and served through the war by re-enlistment after the expiration of his first term of service.† He was first in battle at Shiloh, and after that fought at Corinth, Metamora Heights and at Vicksburg, where he received a ball in the arm June 27, 1863, which he carries to this day.† He participated in the battle of Kenesaw Mountain, Georgia, where Shermanís army was repulsed June 27, 1864, and he was taken prisoner by the enemy.† Only thirty-two members of his company were in this engagement, in which the first and second lieutenants were both killed.† With his captain and the remnant of his company Mr. Mann endured the horrors of six monthsí incarceration in the Andersonville prison pen.† After his parole he returned home for a time to recuperate and then rejoined his regiment and had the honor of participating in the grand review at Washington, D. C., of the victorious Army of the Republic.† After that he went with his regiment to Louisville, Kentucky, where its members received an honorable discharge from the service, and he was mustered out at Indianapolis, Indiana, and returned home with the proud record of a veteran and a victor completed while he was yet in his twentieth year.
††††††††††† After the war Mr. Mann took up farming in Indiana, and in 1866 he went to Kansas, where he successfully continued in agriculture until 1874, when he came to Stanislaus County, California.† For five years afterward he resided at Tuolumne City, manager a ferry for four years and then commenced banking, which he pursued for sixteen years.† In 1896 he took up his residence at Modesto, where he opened a cash grocery, an enterprise which has been so prosperous as to place him among the prominent business men of the town.† He was elected one of the trustees of the city in 1898 and filled the office with so much ability and devotion to the interests of the people that he was re-elected in 1900.† He is a member of both branches of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows and he and his wife and daughters are members of the associate order of Rebekah.† He is the present chief patriarch of his encampment.† He has been an enthusiastic member of the Grand Army of the Republic, always active in its work and helpful to all its interests.
††††††††††† While a resident of Kansas, Mr. Mann married Miss Rose M. Schumaker, a native of Iowa, and they have had three daughters:† Ettie, who married George Armstrong, of Stanislaus County; Ida, who is Mrs. A. J. Saferite, of Stanislaus County; and Lotta, who married S. C. Geer, of Stanislaus.† Mr. and Mrs. Mann have a pleasant home at Modesto and enjoy the friendship of a large circle of acquaintances.
Transcribed by Gerald Iaquinta.
© 2011† Gerald Iaquinta.