Do you have county histories in your genealogy library? While younger genealogists may not be purchasing copies of these old books, I know that I have several in my collection. And while these books were (and likely still are) expensive, they have proven valuable to have at my fingertips.
But, it is unlikely that I will be purchasing similar books in the future. The major reason for this is the availability of digital books. I’m sure my readers are used to accessing books on sites like Archive.org, Google Books and FamilySearch. And those are my go-tos when I’m looking for a digital copy of a book.
However, there is another source to check for a digital book that I often forget to use: Ancestry. When I was looking for a digital copy of the book, Counties of Warren, Benton, Jasper and Newton, Indiana I found it on Ancestry.
I love that these various sites provide access to digital books. Not only do the search functions help me find all mentions of a family name in the book but they don’t require space on my crowded bookshelves!
While updating my FOSTER research, I decided to not only locate mentions of Zebulon Foster in the History of Warren County section of the book Counties of Warre, Benton, Jasper and Newton, Indiana but to transcribe those mentions.
On page 151, the author discusses the Churches of West Lebanon. Zebulon Foster is mentioned in the portion about the Methodist class.
The Methodist class of Lebanon was organized about the year 1837, in the old schoolhouse, by Rev. Ansel Beach (probably). Among the first members were Jesse Swisher, Delos Warren, Rev. Colbreath Hall, Edward P. Marshall, George Beymer, David Etnire, Zebulon Foster, Samuel Wood, Charles Hayward, William B. Owens,Josiah J. Cooper and others.
Then on page 170 is a biography of Zebulon Foster.
Zebulon Foster, one of the pioneers of Warren County, was born in Pike County, Ohio, August 19, 1808, and is a son of Richard and Rachel (Browning) Foster, both natives of Maryland; the former died in Pike County, Ohio, in 1831, the latter in the same county in 1856. Mr. Foster received what education he has in the subscription schools of Ohio. He worked for his father until he was twenty-five, when he was married to Miss Caroline Ostrander on February 14, 1833, daughter of Dr. Edward and Margaret Ostrander. To this union were born twelve children — Edward, Rachel, Eliza W., Mary, William and Harriet : the others died in infancy. After marriage, Mr. Foster came to Warren COunty, where he built a cabin 16×18 feet, and entered 400 acres, which he subsequently improved. Mrs. Foster died June 3, 1871. On August 31, 1877, Mr. Foster was married to Mrs. Juliet Russell, daughter of Andrew and Ann Fleming. Mr. and Mrs. Foster are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church. Mr. Foster is a staunch Republican and has been Township Trustee for five years.
Addendum: I was reminded by Linda Stufflebeam that she has compiled a list (with links) of the county histories that have been published. Check out her links!