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Biography of Joseph Gaston

JOSEPH GASTON. – Joseph Gaston, the pioneer railroad man of Oregon, was born in Lloydsville, Belmont county, Ohio, in 1833. His ancestors on is father’s side were Huguenots, who were expelled from France by the Roman Catholic King in the sixteenth century, on account of their adhesion to the protestant reformation. They settled first in Ireland, and from thence in 1562 removed to North Carolina, from whence numerous branches of the family scattered out over the United States. William Gaston, the granduncle of Joseph, was chief justice of North Carolina, and for many years member of Congress from that state, and was spoken as one of the great orators of his day. He was also founder of the city of Gaston in the “old North State.” Mr. Gaston’s cousin, William Gaston of Boston, was elected governor of Massachusetts in 1874, being the first Democratic governor of that state in fifty years. His grandfather on is mother’s side was a distinguished soldier of the war of 1812, fighting with Perry in his victory on Lake Erie. His father dying, Joseph was left to the care of relatives, and at the age of fifteen set up in life for himself, working for wages on the farm and in the sawmill. By his own earnings and efforts he procured a common-school education and the means to study law, and was admitted to practice in the supreme court of Ohio in 1856. When the Southern Rebellion broke out in 1860 he raised a company of volunteers, and offered his services to President Lincoln, but was rejected by the examining surgeon for a disease...

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