Where Ben Inman Lived
This page will trace Benjamin Inman's whereabouts at various times in his life:
Birth. When we started our family album, our only information on Ben's birth was a typed page which was handed down in our family with the birthdates and birthplaces of the Inman family. Ben is listed as "Benjamin Franklin Inman, October 31, 1846, Miami, Ohio." In all the references to him, he's listed as "Ben" or "Benjamin", but without any middle name. There is no city in Ohio called Miami. There is a Miami county and several Miami townships. We're not sure which place the chronicler had in mind.
There were numerous Inmans living in Miami county
in the first half of the 19th Century, including several Benjamins
and Johns, but none that can be identified positively with our
ancestor or his parents. Most of these Inmans
are Quakers who had left South Carolina because of their
opposition to slavery. In the 1895 Census, which lists Ben as 48 years old and born
in OH, his sister (?), Mary E. Jennings, is listed as 42 years of
age and born in PA. On the other hand, Mary's birthplace may not have
been recorded correctly.
Residences. The following are some traces which Ben Inman left in the public record:
- 1840 -- The following family is enumerated in the census in Washington township, Miami county, Ohio. We can't positively identify this John Inman as Ben's father. The children's ages don't match up with what we see in 1850, unless a boy and a girl each died between 1840 and 1850. This is the only evidence we've found anywhere to support the claim that Ben Inman was born in Miami county, Ohio. On the other hand, we couldn't find any Inmans in 1840 in Mercer county either.
Heads of Families
- 1850 -- Washington township, Mercer county, OH, about 50 miles to the northwest of Miami county. Ben is enumerated in the Census on a farm with his parents, John and Julia. He's listed as 4 years old, which agrees with a birth date in 1846.
- 1858 -- If little sister Margaret's birth date and place are correct in the next census, the Inman family is still living somewhere in Ohio.
- 1860 -- Fairfield township, DeKalb county, IN, about 80 miles northwest of Miami county, on the far side of the Fort Wayne metropolitan area. Ben is enumerated in the Census on a farm with his parents. His mother's barely legible middle name appears to be Ann. Ben is listed as 14 years old.
- Civil War -- We could find no information at the Soldiers and Sailors site which identified our Ben Inman as having served in this conflict.
- 1863 -- John Inman is listed as owner of property in section 31, range 6, in Fairfield township.
- 1867 -- A piece of property in Fairfield township is transferred 26 July from John Inman to Isaac Reed.
- 1868 -- Another piece of property in Fairfield is transferred 18 April from John Inman to Nelson Wells. Were these transfers a sign that the Inmans are about to move? The Illinois Marriage Index lists a marriage between Henry Schasteen and Lizzie C. Inman which took place 21 Oct 1868 in Logan county. This is Ben's sister, who would be about 18 years old, and is the only trace of any of Ben's siblings we've found outside of the 1850/1860/1870 census records.
- 1870 -- East Lincoln township, Logan county, IL, about 300 miles west of the Inmans' 1860 residence. Ben is enumerated in the Census with his parents once again. He's listed as 23 years old this time, which still agrees with an 1846 birth date.
- 1872 -- DeWitt county, IL. Marries Lucy Ann Jennings in this neighboring county. See their marriage license.
- 1878 -- The Lincoln city section of the 1878 Logan county history's directory, on page 358, lists a Benjamin Inman on Logan street in Lincoln.1
- 1880 -- Logan county, IL. Listed in Census as 33 yrs old, born in IN, and living in the town of Lincoln. One tantalizing question about this data is, "what is Julia Jenning's relationship to Lucy?" See Lucy's page for more census listings which include Julia.
- 1882 -- Park Rapids, in Cass county, MN, where the Enterprise, 17 Aug 1882, reports Ben's visit:
Mr. Jennings has been favored with a visit from his brother-in-law, Mr. Ben. Inman. Mr. Inman goes back to his Illinois home at once--having left on Tuesday--to make arrangements to return with his family where he will engage in business. Mr. Inman belongs to the 'blue ribbon' army. We cannot have too many of that kind of men.
- 1883 -- Moves to Hubbard county, which was created in March 1883 from portions of Cass county. As reported in a news item in the Enterprise, 17 May 1883:
Ben Inman with his mother and family, came on from Lincoln Ill., last week. Mr. Inman was here last summer and now returns to make this his home. He is stopping for a time with his sister, Mrs. Jennings.
In a 7 Dec 1883 item in the Enterprise, among a list of local businesses appears:
Restaurant, B. J. Inman. What does the J. stand for, anyway?
- 1885 -- Todd precinct, Hubbard county, MN. Ben is listed in a state census as 39 yrs old, born in OH.
- 1889 -- Ben is said to have killed a panther in Hubbard county! According to the Enterprise, 13 Sep 1889:
Geo. Rutherford, came down from Itasca Lake Saturday, he saw a panther while up there that had a tail as long as 16 foot fence rail. We understand that Ben Inman killed that same panther, and after measuring said tail, and computing the distance around Itasca Lake, concluded that, that tail would reach three times around the lake and twice around his body, and it wasn't much of a tail either.
- 1890 -- U. S. Census records for this year were destroyed in a fire.
- 1895 -- Park Rapids village, Hubbard county, MN. Listed in another state census as 48 yrs old, born in OH. While in Minnesota,2 Ben is literally an "inn man", operating the Central House in Park Rapids. Could he have learned that trade at the Inman House1 in Lincoln, IL?
- 1897 -- Colorado Springs, CO. Ben and Lucy Ann's sixth and last child, Theta Viola, is born.
- 1900 -- Ben and Lucy are enumerated at 429½ E. Willamette Street, in Colorado Springs, along with Charles, Nora and Viola. The census taker records that Ben was born in Ohio in Oct 1846, and that both of his parents were born in Ohio as well. (In the same census, Ida tells a census taker in Denver that her dad was born in Pennsylvania and her mom in Indiana!)
- 1905 -- According to the 27 July Colorado Springs Gazette:
Ben Inman, of 435 East Willamette avenue, has returned from Denver, where he was called by the serious illness of his brother.
(There was no evidence of Ben's brothers in any Colorado newspaper, cemetery or census records.)
- 1910 -- Benjamin, Lucy and Theta V. Inman are listed at 3440 S. Sherman Street, in Englewood, a Denver suburb. Once again Ben tells the census taker he was born in Ohio, of Ohio-born parents. He claims to be 63 years old.
Death. Ben Inman dies on New Year's Day, 1917, in Denver, Colorado. We don't have a death certificate or obituary yet, but believe this information to be accurate. For what it's worth, there's a Find A Grave entry for Crown Hill Cemetery, in Jefferson county, Colorado, near Denver, which lists a burial for "Ben Inman, 1846-1916", but with no further information, and no picture of a tombstone.
The directory entry says, "Inman, Benjamin, laborer, Logan st; rep; Meth; from
Indiana." Other Inmans living in Lincoln included:
- Inman, Charles, fish dealer,
- Inman, I., teamster, Hamilton st,
- Inman, Ezekiel, prop. Inman House, Kickapoo st.
Are any of the other Inmans in this very small Illinois town related to our Ben? Is Charles
Ben's brother? Is Ezekiel
the same man as is listed in the 1886 History of Logan county
, page 221, as having served as a county constable from 1857 to 1859? Possibly. There's an Ezekiel in both the 1860 and 1870 censuses, who was born in Ohio about 1825 or 1827. (In the 1880 census, the only Inmans in Logan county are Ben and Lucy and their children.) The same directory, on page 400, lists Ben's younger sister Elizabeth and her husband. We've been able to trace their descendants
, with the help of their great-great-grandson.
Minnesota information is taken from
the web site
of the Hubbard County GenWeb Project, which contains records formerly available from the Hubbard County Genealogical Society.
This page was last updated 28 Nov 2014.