Biography of John Coy
Indiana County, PA Biographies

JOHN COY, ex-postmaster of Homer City, and a wide-awake merchant, is a son of John B. and Margaret (Empfield) Coy, and was born in Cherry Hill township, Indiana county, Pennsylvania, December 11, 1848. His grandfather, John Coy, was a native and a lifelong resident of Bedford county, where, at the time of his death, he owned a farm of four hundred acres of land. He was a man of great activity, and was quite notable among the bearhunters during the pioneer days of Bedford county's early settlers. He was an old line whig, a member of the Evangelical Lutheran church, and died in June, 1855. He married Sarah Bowers, by whom he had nine children: Lewis, Franey, John B., Adam, Sarah, wife of George Emfield; Peter, Nancy, who married Samuel Stahl; Elizabeth, wife of William Fowler, and David. His second son, John B. Coy (father), was born in Bedford county, November 2, 1814, attended the subscription schools, and learned t.he trade of shoemaker, which he followed for nearly a quarter of a century. In April, 1851, he removed to Centre township, this county, where he bought a farm of one hundred and thirty five acres, which he tilled during the remainder of his life. He was an elder and deacon in the Evangelical Lutheran church, of which he was for many years an active member. He was a republican and took quite an active part in local politics. He served as road supervisor, school director and overseer of the poor, and at this date (October 10, 1890), he is living and enjoying good health. In 1838 he married Margaret Empfield. To their union were born five children: Sarah J., wife of G. A. Mikesell; Benjamin, Alexander W., Peter and John. Of these children, Sarah J. and John only are living. Mrs. Coy was a daughter of Peter Empfield (maternal grandfather), who was a farmer of t.his county and met with several reverses in business, He was a republican in politics.

John Coy was reared on his father's farm and attended the public schools. In early manhood he worked on the farm in the summer and on a saw mill during the winter for several years. In 1872 he came to Homer City and formed a mercantile partnership with G. A. Mikesell, under the firm name of Coy & Mikesell. Some eighteen months afterward Mr. Mikesell sold out his interest to James Fenton, and the firm became Coy & Fenton. In 1875, Mr. Coy bought out his partner's share, and since that time has conducted the business very successfully. He has a large, well selected stock of dry goods, grocerics, hardware and general merchandise, especially selected to gratify the wishes and satisfy the needs of his patrons. Attentive, courteous and obliging, he has built up a good patronage. His present general mercantile establishment is on Main street, and was erected in 1865 by his father.

On September 19, 1871, he married Anna M. McFeaters, daughter of James and Elizabeth (Duncan) McFeaters, of Indiana county. Mr. and Nrs. Coy have three children: Lela Thoburn, born Nay 18, 1873; Tesora Grace, born December 14, 1876; and Jennie Ethel, born November 16, 1879.

John Coy is an uncompromising democrat, and has made an excellent record as school director, overseer of the poor and councilman of the borough. In 1885 he was appointed postmaster of Homer City, which position he held until May 24, 1889. He is a man of perseverance, sagacity and prudence, and his success in mercantile life is attributable to these qualities which he possesses in so high a degree.

Biographical and Historical Cyclopedia
of Indiana and Armstrong Counties, Pennsylvania
Samuel T. Wiley, Historian & Editor
John M. Greshan & Co.
Philadelphia, 1891

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