SYLVESTER C. KENNEDY. A member of the present strong and effective board of commissioners of Indiana county
is Sylvester C. Kennedy, a representative farmer of Young township and an energetic business man of extended and
successful experience. He was born in Lower Burrell township, Westmoreland county, Pennsylvania, January 17, 1843,
and is a son of Joseph and Margaret (Coe) Kennedy. The Kennedys are of Scotch-Irish descent. Thomas Kennedy (paternal
grandfather) was a native of Allegheny county, this State, served as a soldier in the war of 1812 under Gen. Harrison,
and some time thereafter removed to Burrell township, Westmoreland county, Pa., where he followed farming until
his death, in 1842, at fifty six years of age. He married Catherine Flick, who was born in 1793. Benjamin Cue (maternal
grandfather) was of ScotchIrish extraction and lived and died in Allegheny county, this State. Joseph Kennedy (father)
was a native and life long resident of Lower Burrell township, in Westmoreiand county. He was a farmer by occupation,
a democrat in political opinion and a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church, in which he had served as class
leader and steward, as well as filling all of its other local offices. He was a man of very good judgment, took
an active part in politics, served for many years as a school director and died in 1877, aged sixty five years.
He married Margaret Coe, who was reared as a Presbyterian, but is now a member of the M. E. church at Springdale,
Allegheny county, Pa., where she resides. She is in the seventy second year of her age and is very sprightly and
active for one of her years.
Sylvester C. Kennedy was reared on his father's Westmoreland county farm, He received his education in the common
and in select schools. On August 9th, 1862, be left the farm and enlisted in Co. I, 123d regiment, Pa. Vols., and
served until May 13, 1863, when he was honorably discharged at Pittsbnrgh, Pa. He was in the hotly contested battle
of Antietam and the fearful charges at Fredericksburg. During 1864 be worked on the farm and went to school, In
1865 he taught one term of school and during the next year he attended and graduated from Duff's Business college
of Pittsburgh, Pa. He then returned to his farm equipped with a first class business education, and was successfully
engaged in farming until 1879, when he removed to Young township, where he purchased his present fine and well
cultivated farm of one hundred and thirty five acres of land. He is an active and working democrat, who has been
honored with various offices of trnst and responsibility by his party both in his native and his adopted county.
He served for three years in Westmoreiand and for nine years in Indiana county as school director. He also served
two terms as justice of the peace in Young township. In 1887 he was nominated and elected by his party as county
commissioner. On January 1, 1888, he went into office, and by attention to business and faithfulness to the true
interests of the county is making a creditable and meritorious record. He is a member of Post No. 28, Grand Army
of the Republic, Arcadia Grange, No. 176, Patrons of Husbandry, and Jacksonville Methodist Episcopal church, of
which he is a trustee. In agricultural affairs be takes a deep interest, labors steadily for the promotion of the
farmers' best interests, and believes in the Grange organization as the most potent factor of the day to secure
the advancement of the laboring and farming classes.
He was married, on May 5, 1868, to Melissa E. Simons, daughter of William Simons, of Allegheny county; Pa. They
have eight children, five sons and three daughters: Albert C., Nellie G., Nannie J., William J., Edwin K., Silas
Clark, Mary Stella and John E.
He has become well known by his advocacy of grange principles and his desire that no injudicious niovernent should
be allowed to alienate the farmer from his true interests.
Biographical and Historical Cyclopedia
of Indiana and Armstrong Counties, Pennsylvania
Samuel T. Wiley, Historian & Editor
John M. Greshan & Co.
Indiana County Pennsylvania Biographies
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