Among the few pioneers of Franklin county who still remain to enjoy the fruits of their early toil, privations and hardships is the subject of this sketch, William Rohr. Born in Haycock township, Bucks county, Pennsylvania, September 20, 1810, he emigrated, when six years of age (in 1816), with his parents to Ohio. On the 5th day of July, of that year, a little company consisting of seventeen persons, and facetiously called Rohr's emigration company, started on their journey to the west. The emigration of Michael Rohr and wife; George Rohr, wife and sons, Jacob and Charles; John Smith, wife and daughter; Thomas Rathmell, wife and infant daughter, and a man by the name of Peter Wisel. After a journey of six weeks made with three wagons, one four-horse wagon and two two-horse wagons, the most of the way over the mountains and hills, the travelers arrived in Madison township, Franklin County, Ohio, on the sixteenth day of August. Michael Rohr purchased section number six, in Madison township, on which a small clearing had been mad by Henry Bunn, and resided upon it until his death. He was born in 1756, and died in 1818. His son George Rohr, the father of the subject of this sketch, was a native of Bucks county, Pennsylvania, and was born in 1785. He married Elizabeth Catharine Funk, who was born in Northumberland county, Pennsylvania in 1784. He died on the homestead, in Madison township, __, 1862, and she, January 14, 1854. They were the parents of four children, two of whom died when young. John is still living in Madison township, aged about seventy-one.
William Rohr was married, in 1831, to Elizabeth Wolf, daughter of Matthias Wolf, an early settler in Madison township, afterward in the east part of Hamilton. She was born in Pendleton county, Virginia, June 21, 1811, and was about a year old when her father emigrated to Ohio. After his marriage Mr. Rohr remained for over a year in the house of his father-in-law, and they together put up a saw-mill on Big Walnut creek, not far from where the residence of W. T. Rees now is. In 1833 he located on the opposite side of the road from his present residence, and subsequently purchased and settled on the farm on which he now lives. For about twelve years Mr. Rohr followed the trade of wagon-making, which he had learned from his father, and carried on the business in the little shop which is still standing near his residence. His principal occupation, during his life however, has been that of farming, in which he has been more successful than falls to the lot of the majority of agriculturists. In former years Mr. Rohr was extremely fond of the sport of fishing. The streams abounded in salmon, pike, white perch and other varieties, now nearly extinct, and no one in the settlement was a more enthusiastic and successful angler than he. His wife died February 8, 1868, and some three or four years afterward he made a division of his property, consisting of eight hundred acres of land, among his children, retaining a life lease upon the whole.
Mr. Rohr is the father of eleven children, as follows: George, born March 7, 1832, and died August 7, 1833; Matthias, born November 4, 1833, and died January 30, 1835; Mary Ann, born November 6, 1835, now wife of Joseph Shoaf, and resides in Hamilton [township]; Eliza Jane, born December 7, 1837, now widow of John B. Young, and lives in Hamilton; Absalom, born January 19, 1838, now a resident of Madison township; Lewis, born August 28, 1841, and died July 27, 1842; William Henry, born April 24, 1841, and resides on the home place with his father; Sarah Elizabeth, born August 21, 1846, was the wife of Dimmick Harris, and died November 30, 1876; Rachel Catharine, born February 2, 1849, is now the wife of William Strickler, and occupies the old Matthias Wolf farm; Louisa Ellen, born July 29, 1851, wife of Peter N. Hudson, and lives south of the home farm in Hamilton; and an unnamed child, born December 1, 1853, who died the twelfth of the same month.